Loggers ‘the ultimate conservationists’: Abbott’s environment vandalism policy

Speech delivered by Tony Abbott to the Forestworks Dinner in Canberra Tuesday, 4 March 2014 Julie, I want to thank you very much indeed for that kind introduction. It’s nice to have a list of things recounted to an appreciative audience – it really is nice. But the most important fact, at least insofar I suspect as this audience is concerned, is omitted from the official resume, because I had the great good fortune of having as my maternal grandfather a shipwright and as many of you would know a shipwright is a marine carpenter. That’s what a shipwright is. A shipwright is a marine carpenter, at least that’s what a […]

Reza’s death demands a judicial inquiry, but where is the pressure? @GregDyett reports

[clear] By Margo Kingston  @margokingston1 27th February 2014 Here is the transcript and audio of  this evening’s SBS World Radio item by Greg Dyett @GregDyett on the Manus Island detention centre review and whether it will do the job. I’m thrilled there are a few journalists who understand how important this matter is for the victims and their families. Thanks for caring, Greg. Still no Manus review terms of reference? Anyone demanded judicial inquiry so G4S staff give fearless evidence, powers to gather evidence? — Queen Margo (@margokingston1) February 25, 2014 After his piece, I’ve taken the liberty of publishing a piece by David Marr in the SMH on the […]

Abbott’s attack on ABC proves politicians are free press chameleons – @journlaw reports

[clear] By Mark Pearson  @journlaw 5th February 2014 Politicians are free expression chameleons. Regardless of their political colours, they are inevitably staunch advocates of a free media and the free flow of information while in opposition. When they win government they tend to shut down criticism and negative press by implementing policies and passing laws to limit scrutiny. We saw this happen in Australia this week Prime Minister Tony Abbott’scriticisms of the Australian Broadcasting Corporation on the eve of his government’s announcement of an‘efficiency study’ on the independent national broadcaster. Less than a year ago, the former Gillard Labor government’s proposed media regulations which risked journalists and media organisations being shackled by a new privacy […]

Griffith grudge match: Glasson’s Gladiators vs Butler’s Battlers @GriffithElects reports

By Jan Bowman  @GriffithElects 25th January 2014 Having a Prime Minister as the sitting member drew significant attention to Griffith during the 2013 federal election, but there is a sense that this time around the eyes of the nation will be on Griffith with renewed interest, many seeing this by-election as the first test for Tony Abbott’s government. On one side of the ring we have LNP candidate Dr Glasson, who is well liked in the electorate, and his personal appeal may be his greatest asset. He projected as much himself, when he was reported in the Fairfax press as saying that: “If we try to sell it (the election) […]

Best Polly Ticks Quotes and Moments of 2013

by Sarah Capper 23 December 2013 A week is a long time in politics. A year is an excruciating amount of time, and as we near the end of 2013, our third prime minister for the year has just reached his first 100 days in office. Awww. In many senses, it’s been Tony Abbott’s year. So what does this year in politics look like – in the “suppository of wisdom” of quotable quotes? Beyond the delivery of our PM’s trademark “Umm, Ah, Yeah, Um,” response? Some people said Abbott’s election would provide Australia with its ‘George Bush’ moment [shiver], but in terms of adding to the rich history of Australian political […]

To Zip or Not to Zip … And Other Tragedies

By Sarah Capper 23 November 2013 In announcing his resignation from parliament last week, it seemed quite fitting that former Prime Minister and Member for Griffith Kevin Rudd quoted Shakespeare’s Hamlet – a tragedy about treachery and madness. Rudd referred to the “slings and arrows” suffered during his political career (and by his family in recent months). The phrase is part of ‘Hamlet’s’ ‘To be or not to be’ soliloquy, “the question” being followed by: And so it goes. The quote queries what is the “noble” course of action – knowing when to cop things on the chin, when to bow out gracefully, versus pushing back and taking down everything (and […]

It’s time, Finance and AFP: Randall’s Cairns claim must be investigated

[clear] By Margo Kingston 20 October, 2013 OK, we’re starting to get to the pointy end of the political travel rorts scandal. My understanding of the Don Randall matter is this. In November 2012 the Perth MP and a family member flew to Cairns for an overnight stay. . He claimed the $5259 trip was “electorate business”. A week after returning from Cairns, on November 26, he updated his pecuniary interests register, saying:  “My wife and I have taken possession of the house at the Cairns location. We intend to rent the house as an investment.” When Fairfax revealed this after a tip-off from a citizen journalist, he said: “The claims […]

The fruitless push for a Parliamentarians’ code of conduct

By Rose Iser 16 October 2013 The latest spate of entitlements scandals is unlikely to bring about a code of conduct for federal parliamentarians given that, for the past 40 years, multiple attempts to enact a code have failed. Since 1975, federal leaders and parliamentarians have investigated the possibility of a code of conduct, but reports and proposals have never resulted in a wide-ranging code covering the behaviour of MPs. In 1980, the House of Representatives noted a report from the Bowen Committee, chaired by the Chief Justice of the Federal Court, Sir Nigel Bowen, recommending changes to Standing Orders to enforce a code of conduct – a breach of which […]

Bob n Beattie BBQ: @stephaniedale22 reports

[clear] By Stephanie Dale 1 September 2013 There’s been a curious absence of fight in Peter Beattie during the last couple of weeks on the 2013 campaign trail – but today that changed, with the former Queensland Premier charging out of the corner into the Forde ring, following Labor’s campaign launch in Brisbane. Fiiiiiinally, Beattie had something he could stick his teeth into – jobs’ initiatives announced by Prime Minister Kevin Rudd an hour earlier. And he had Australian political royalty to escort to a barbecue organised by the party faithful in Beenleigh – the nation’s most popular living former prime minister, Bob Hawke. Two hundred people in red t-shirts crushed […]

Forde hosts Beattie: @StephanieDale22 reports

View Larger Map Forde Seat Profile By Stephanie Dale @stephaniedale22 12 August 2013 For most south-east Queenslanders, the Division of Forde can be summed up in two white words on a green signpost: Beenleigh and Logan, exits off the MI between Brisbane and the Gold Coast. To a zillion daily commuters and travelers heading north and south along the Pacific Highway, these signposts mark the motorway at its widest Queensland point, 10 lanes wide. Only residents and freight deliveries exit at Beenleigh and Logan, suburban heartland pockmarked with loose strings of franchise and corporate retail monoculture. For the rest of the nation, the Division of Forde is an extraneous somewhere you […]