The End Of The Age Of Enlightenment

My thanks to Alan Moir for permission to use his eloquent cartoon, which appeared so promptly in the Sydney Morning Herald after Joe Hockey’s ‘entitlement’ speech. Thanks too to Miglo and Min for their encouragement in offering this a wider reading after its first posting at http://polliepomes.wordpress.com/

Friday, April 20, 2012.

Joe Hockey travelled to London,
To make his declaration
That it was time to turn the page,
And bring to an end the age
Of what he called Entitlement.

You may well ask why didn’t he
Announce it in North Sydney
That we’re citizens of Asia,
Neighbours of Malaysia
And the Indian subcontinent.

There, he said, they are satisfied
With what their families provide
To support them when they’re old.
Now Oz could save amounts untold,
With something the equivalent.

When asked to whom the scheme applied
He hesitated and then replied,
“Oh, we’d have to have a means test
Which would eliminate the rest……..
…….Of us who prove ourselves non-indigent.”

NOTES: Joe Hockey, the Shadow Treasurer, made a speech in London on the other side of the world from here a few days ago  which included an unambiguous statement about the age of unlimited and unfunded entitlement to government services and income support being over in the Western world.   He then made the mistake of appearing on Lateline that same evening and answering very pointed questions from Tony Jones about exactly what that might mean under a Coalition government.

He repeated again his statement that “with an ageing population and an entitlement system that has seen extraordinary largesse built up over the last 50 years, Western communities, Western societies are going to have to make some very hard and unpopular decisions to wind back the involvement of the state in people’s lives.”   At the same time he talked about Australians riding on the back of significant growth in Asia and the Government,  if serious about their much vaunted “Asian Century,  should start comparing us with our Asian neighbours when it comes to understandable levels of economic growth,  inflation, employment and so on, rather than comparing us to countries in Europe and North America.”   He then agreed with Tony Jones this included “entitlements……….a significant issue.”

Having got this beautiful “Gotcha!” out of him, Jones did his best to tie Hockey down as to exactly which benefits he had in mind but got a lot of squirming and waffling in reply about it all depending and case by case issues!  It’s worth watching!  I won’t link you to the stories about it which appeared in the MSM next day but if you google ‘the age of entitlement’ you’ll be reading for hours.   He wouldn’t be pinned down as to exactly which Asian countries he’d compare us with on social benefit entitlements, but he mentioned statistics for Hong Kong, Korea and Japan.  You’ll have to forgive my poetic license in using India and Malaysia for rhyming reasons. After all,  they are our neighbours in Asia and millions of people in all of those countries and elsewhere in Asia are currently living in abject poverty.

I was appalled to hear Joe Hockey talk about how we should look to our region for a model on welfare spending!  Not so!  We need to maintain and improve our mutual support standards here so that we can be a beacon to other countries around us!  We are an example of what they can strive for!  I can’t imagine living in a modern state which hasn’t found a way to look after its weaker and poorer members.  Medical, educational and other social benefits should be fairly available to all regardless of economic status, and yes all need to make a fair contribution to their cost where they can.

Listening to the man who could be our next Treasurer I feared for our future more than ever before.   He was talking as if he had no real understanding or appreciation of the enlightened society most of us are beginning to enjoy only now after centuries of struggle from the earliest days of organised labor in Western Europe.  Almost a thousand years ago journeymen and their craftsmen employers were striving for improvement in their lives through the Guilds.    In the 18th century ‘Scottish Enlightenment’ economist, Adam Smith noted the imbalance in the rights of workers in regards to owners or ‘masters’ in The Wealth of Nations.

Today more than ever in Australia working people at all wage and salary levels need to join together in their unions and professional organisations to work with and within all political parties.  They must make sure that the well-being of our society,  its economy and its environment,  is such that the fair entitlements of all its citizens are protected.  This Coalition team led by the likes of Tony Abbott,  Joe Hockey and Andrew Robb must not come to power.

91 comments on “The End Of The Age Of Enlightenment

  1. I’m a strange bloke at times. I actually don’t mind my taxes going towards helping a fellow Aussie whose situations are dire. If his or her situation is beyond their control then they need all the support they can get. I don’t give a stuff what they do in Hong Kong, Japan or Korea, Mr Hockey. Think about the Aussies first, please.

  2. Only the other day I was thinking how nice it would be to have zillions of dollars and not have to work. Then I realised that many people who have nothing can’t work.

    Reality check.

  3. I recently read about a Greens MP who is living on the Unemployment Benefit for a month to prove a point. Unfortunately, I fear she will be preaching to the converted as the likes of Hockey believes his own advertising, that polticians work ‘hard’ and therefore deserve more. Why voters believe them is beyond me, especially when we have the rememdy in our own hands. The current LNP cabal are a disgrace to the generations of Australians on all sides of the political spectrum who actually did some work, to ensure there is a social safety net to protect those who for whatever reason might otherwise be even more greatly disadvantaged.

  4. Patricia, didn’t Abbott squeal in 2007 when his salary dropped after being relegated to the benches of the Opposition? Life became so tough for the little diddums.

  5. Unfortunately, Christine, the disadvantaged are just mere political footballs to be kicked around the park.

  6. Roswell, your comments have bought a smile to my face. Yes poor little diddums did it tough. Thank christ he didn’t stay in the seminary for too long. Imagine the holier than thou crap we would be treated to as he is over the top with his backward way of viewing the world and thinks he is just a step away from being god’s right hand man!!!

  7. The Age of Entitlement cannot be allowed to end until Mr Abbott has received his entitlement & moved into the Lodge. After that, all bets are off.

  8. Bob Brown on Q & A

    How is this for enlightenment. When answering a question on Murdoch and his press and its influence in the UK, Tony Jones butted in, after getting a call from the producers, and saying Murdoch hasn’t done anything in Australia.

    Bob Brown quickly replied you are forgetting Camillgate. He then explained that when the Murdoch press had the telephone tapes between Camilla and Charles, Fleet street did not run with them in the UK. Instead New Idea, a Murdoch publication ran the telephone extracts in its magazine. After that publication in Australia, the Murdoch UK papers were then free to go with the story back in the UK.

    I had forgotten that piece of Murdoch manipulation. And so have the Australian media. So thanks Bob for reminding the ABC and the audience.

  9. ………didn’t Abbott squeal in 2007 when his salary dropped…..

    Like a stuck pig, Migs.

    Patricia, I think another Henry VIII would have been a good thing when Liealot was in the seminary. A dose of Henry’s benign treatment wouldn’t have done him any harm at all. :mrgreen:

    Have just watched Q&A with Bob Brown taking it up ever so politely to idiots reading from the Liars Party handbook. I really enjoyed their stricken looks as they realised they’d just been exposed as fools in front of the country. Onya Bob!

    And I’ve just watched Nicola Roxon cut Emma Alberici off at the knees wrt Peter Slipper. The minister also managed to put in a lot of plugs for what the government is doing and drawing comparisons with the sterility and lack of policy of the Liars Party.

    Go Nicola!!!

  10. Sue, I thought Bob did a sterling job sticking it to the Empire. I had also forgotten Camillagate and the Emperor’s manipulation to allow him to print his tawdry exposé.

    I really wanted to slap Tony Jones’ smug mug when he made that crack about Rupert’s benign presence in this country. Bob certainly called him on that.

  11. So Mr. Nutt denies the allegations. The relationship was consensual.

    Slipper has only been married 5 years.

    Nutt said allegation are defamatory,

    I would remind Mr. Nutt, it is his side making the allegations.

    Does that mean the first half of those court papers are based on lies.

    I suggest the second half might just be based on someones feverish imagination.

    Why does one crawl through a window, in a consensual relationship.

    I just cannot take any of it seriously.

    I want to add, I strongly take sexual harassment and abuse seriously.

    I also take domestic violent orders as seriously.

    What I find appalling is people that use these protections of the law for their own benefit, agenda and political reasons.

    They devalue the laws that are put into place to protect people.

    People who call wolf, put other people in danger. They should be highly condemned.

    When does a interviewer makes a point. What was wrong as far as the interviewer was concerned, she was not getting the answer she wants.

    Roxon sure made mince meat of her. Are these allegations really that serious. A 33 year old spin doctor, who could have walked away at any time. A man who made no complaints to those in the authority. A man who asked no one for help.

    If the interviewer is right, 90 or whatever percentage, agrees with Abbott that these are more serious allegations than usual. God help us.

  12. Roswell, Mr. Abbott had to remortgage his home for nearly a million dollars so he could continue the standard of living he had come used too. No cutting the cloth to suit your income there.

    Lateline tonight is shocking. The journalist seem as upset as Abbott in this matter.

    Criticism because Ashby is still employed. How can they sack him now.

    Talk about grabbing at straws.

    Why are they asking all Abbott’s questions.

  13. I believe Ms. Roxon might have been lying when she said it was a pleasure.

    At least she was stirred up by what I can only call a idiot to s

  14. Daughter just asked me “did anyone, {meaning an alleged victim} make an official complaint in 2003″.
    It doesn’t look that way as there is only mention of the two women who said they saw the video.

  15. Pip, the alleged victim was supposed to be seen bashing his fist against a brick wall, complaining about Slipper. He scabbed his knuckles.

    I have some problem with the story of Slipper entering the room through the window, then someone else videoing his actions on the bed, I assume through the same window.

    I wonder how early they start their drinks.

    If the stories have no basis, this man has been badly abused by the party.

    Especially if nothing he has done is a crime or wrong.

    I suspect much might be an urban myth.

    Ashby did belong to the local party branch.

    I also suspect we have another Grech, doing his bit for the party.

  16. Cu, I’m having a problem taking any of it at face value.
    As far as I can see there was no official complaint in 2003 by any alleged victim.
    It’s very obvious that every news outlet is using the same lines and
    questions – Liberal lines.

    Abbott spoke very reasonably when Slipper took the Speakership which should have been warning enough that he was up to no good under the circumstances, because the fury from all the Coalition Mps was huge.

    In the middle of this we see Kathy Jackson being mentored by a lawyer connected to the HR Nicholls Society and receiving legal representation
    pro bono

    The method of attack hasn’t change much since Abbott arranged the cash stash to get rid of Pauline Hanson although I’d bet he’s not the one who is steering it this time.

    I’m not sure now which report mentioned “political operatives” which is the equivalent of the “faceless men” tag.

    On Lateline Emma Alberici was pushing Nicola Roxon about who would pay Peter Slipper’s legal fees when she should have, and could have, asked who would be paying Ashby’s fees!

  17. You’re right, Pip. Even Emma Alberici was such a hot member of the lynch mob after Speaker Slipper that she wasn’t interested in the complainant. She seemed almost crazed with the smell of blood. She certainly wasn’t her usual sane self.

    Well, all this smutty talk is certainly taking the media focus away from Joe Hockey and the end of entitlement, isn’t it? And it looks like it’s planned to overshadow the Budget too.

    What will Tony Abbott not stoop to? Watching him tonight on 7.30 I saw a wicked man, a hypocrite and a liar, hungry for power and status. Surely the Liberal Party are too proud to have him as their Prime Minister? They’ll want to remove their dirty gloves just before the election. Who’s their choice? It can’t be Hockey now, surely?.

    Is it true that the real LIberal power brokers don’t want Malcolm Turnbull? If so, I’m glad to hear it.

  18. Sue @11.33pm, Jones interevention to smack down bob Brown’s criticism of Murdoch was very clearly a case of the hand in the back ventriloquist trick.

    What a come down for Jones this far into his career and what a disgrace.

    Hi patricia, I found the “political operatives” article. No surprise that it’s The Australian who invented the euphemism for ‘faceless men”.

    Out in the open: what really went on inside Peter Slipper’s office
    by: HEDLEY THOMAS AND MICHAEL McKENNA
    From: The Australian April 24, 2012 12:00AM

    http://www.theaustralian.com.au/national-affairs/in-depth/out-in-the-open-what-really-went-on-inside-peter-slippers-office/story-fndckad0-1226336627179>

    SIX months ago when Peter Slipper was spectacularly reinvented by the Gillard government as Speaker, seething kingmakers in the Liberal Party organised a dump.
    Slipper, the member for Fisher who had been begrudgingly tolerated by his party despite his penchant for stretching the public purse to accommodate premium travel and perks, was officially a turncoat. The gloves were off.

    Among the documents provided to The Australian by political operatives last November was an email exchange dating back to 2003 when Julia Gillard was in opposition and Tony Abbott a minister in John Howard's government. In themselves, the emails are hardly explosive – they evince a warm relationship between two adults: the boss, Slipper, and his employee, Tim Knapp. They discuss plans for a private weekend meeting. It would be thwarted because, as Knapp wrote, "it may be awkward … unless you want me to introduce you as my boyfriend to them all".

  19. patricia, I get the feeling that Minchin is up to his neck in all of this, he’s now a faceless man, or is that “political operative’?
    Apart from his appearance a few days ago to smack down Turnbull he’s rarely seen in the commentariat space, but with HR Nicholls working behind the scenes and kathy Jackson being represented pro bono by a lawyer with links to the HR Nicholls Society, I smell a rodent.

    Remember it was the HR Nicholls Society that Nick Minchin was addressing when he was reported to have said that WorkChoices didn’t go far enough?

    Reading the story below I don’t think Turnbull has a chance of regaining the leadership. Remember also it was Minchin who travelled everywhere with ‘smudgy bugglers’ during the election campaign…..someone had to do it!

    —-
    Nick Minchin lashes Malcolm Turnbull for not defending record
    by: Stefanie Balogh and David Uren From: The Australian April 21, 2012

    http://www.theaustralian.com.au/national-affairs/nick-minchin-lashes-malcolm-turnbull-for-not-defending-record/story-fn59niix-1226334795237

    FORMER finance minister Nick Minchin has given Malcolm Turnbull a clip across the ears, chastising his fellow Liberal for failing to defend the Howard government’s reputation for responsible economic management.

    On Thursday, Mr Turnbull called on the Gillard government to adopt a culture of thrift, acknowledging before an audience of Australia’s foremost economists that spending in John Howard’s final term was excessive.

    I saw an add on ABC24 for a program advertising a conversation with Nick Minchin and Anna Rose, and he was waving his fist furiously at her

    I think she is the wife of GetUp’s Simon Sheik and from that scene he apparently thought it was permissible to bully her!

  20. I find it odd that many Australians would want to lose their pension in preference to paying $2 a week in carbon tax.

  21. As much as I disagree with what Hockey muttered, do you realise it was one of the very rare occasions where the Opposition actually talks about a policy?

  22. Patricia Ryan, that is one thing which concerns me a great deal about Tony Abbott, that being that he does sincerely believe that he is God’s Ordained. He allowed his Roman Catholic beliefs to rule when he was Health Minister and I would expect that he will do likewise as PM.

  23. El gordo, fear not..Minchin already pulls a substantial number of strings in the LNP and I should imagine that he will do so in the foreseeable future.

  24. .Was not Slipper a secretary to Mr. Minchin, as well as to Mr. Howard.

    Nutt has denied the stories as defamatory. If this is the case, why should the PM not appointed Slipper. All rumours and allegations of travel rorts have always been cleared.

    The Australian is being supplied by the Liberal dirt unit, which they cannot now be bothered with hiding the fact.

    it appears that it does not even matter if Slipper is cleared of any wrong doing, he is still responsible for the stories against him. The PM is wrong.

    I consider the behavior of Mr. Abbott and the Liberal party to be blackmail and bullying. You thwarted us by increasing your numbers, you will pay the price.

    Nothing the PM did in supporting Mr. Slipper is illegal or against the Constitution.

    Mr. Punch this morning on the ABC radio local slid we need to remember the problems had with the Carmel Lawrence affair. It went on for ages and hurt the government. At the end of the day, she was cleared of all charges. The same applied to Griener, which led to his own party dumping him. He was later cleared. The same for Mr. Turnbull with the action taken against him.

    History seems to say that in most of these cases, the final result is there is no basis for the outcry. The Grech affair is another.

    I cannot recall any that resulted in a negative result. It is just dirty politics being played.

    Another interesting thing that Punch had to say. He said the reason Badergy airport did not go ahead was because of Ansett Airways and the ownership by New Ltd. They wanted to remain at Kingsford Smith, because it ensured that the two airway policy remained in place.

    We have Mr Brandis still trying to make this out as the crime of the century.

    If proven, it is a serious matter but not the crime of the century.

    Mr. Ashby and the Opposition have taken a sledge hammer to crack a nut.

    It should have been dealt with by normal processes and only taken to the courts if this was unsuccessful.

    How many people in this position lodged up to the high Court as a first course of action.

    There are procedures that one are expected to follow. This has not occurred.

    Procedures are in the act as a means of having complaints dealt with at their source.

    While this is , I am sure an action of this Opposition, it should be treated with in that light. One has to ask what is the agenda of the allegations. To right a wrong, I am sure is not one of them.

    It is to get rid of a legitimate government.

    There is now a chance Mr. Abbott could take over. Take over because dubious actions initiated by them.

    The presumption of innocence is important and is what our legal system is based on. Also it is important, that once legal proceedings are put in place, they should be allowed to take their course.

    What we are seeing is an attack on our parliamentary system and our democracy. Our judicial system is being used for political means and in the process being undermined.

    Yes it is the end of the age of enlightenment, we are entering a new dark ages.

    It is important in this case, who is picking up Mr. Ashby’s legal bills.

  25. He is using the centre for purely political purposes.

    This is not the time and place.

    He is really going over board. New slogan, there is a better way.

    He is there to hand over money raised by his polli ride.

    This in my opinion is a new low.

    A woman’s centre, even in Manly deserves better.

  26. Sue @11.21am. Well done Mr Slipper! For that alone he’s earned every cent of his salary.

    I think the PM is pretty confident wrt Slipper. She would have grilled him to ascertain the truth. Hopefully, thexpenses thing will be dealt with pronto and Slipper cleared and ready to sit in the Speaker’s chair when Parliament sits.

    If i were the government, I’d be hinting that as allegations have been made against Slagalbella, she should step aside until they’vebeen tested in court.

    The Liars could hardly argue with any conviction against that suggestion, so they’d still be down one and the goevernment could get on with governing.

    I had a phone call this morning from a disability support charity asking for a donation and while I had the woman on the phone I asked her how she felt about the proposed Disability Insurance legislation.

    She didn’t seem to know a great deal about it, but was very positive about it. So I took the opportunity to slag off Liealot and made sure that she was also aware of Liars hypocrisy on a number of other issues.

    After I bent her ear for a few minutes, i hung up, hoping that I might have set her thinking.

  27. Darren Chester won the by-election for McGauran’s seat of Gippsland in 2008.

    He flouted the rules and was rightly suspended

    Tony Pricasso has painted his self portrait as everyman on a country wide canvas,
    and I don’t doubt for a minute that the current course of events was meticulously planned months ago, including the fundraising ride which gives reason for the artist to visit a women’s centre. Every other move has been choreographed so why not take this opportunity to show what a good fellow he is.

    http://sale.yourguide.com.au/news/local/news/politics/chester-suspended-from-parliament/2498910.aspx?src=rss

  28. Jane, I’ve been thinking about Slagabella Cruella sitting, scowling in the HoR,
    bold as brass, protected of course by her boss…. but that protection doesn’t apply to opponents and ‘traitors’.
    She has to apply for probate before a certain date and I have no idea what that time frame is, but she’s no doubt been hanging off thinking that they’ll be in government before it all hits the fan.

  29. jane, I see you share the general confidence in the PM covering all angles. That’s why Oakeshott and Windsor supported her. She’s the real thing. Whereas…………..

    Lyn’s links this morning took me, as they often do, to something written by Clarence Girl at http://northcoastvoices.blogspot.com.au/2012/04/abbott-on-slipper-in-2011-hes-mate-of.html She described Abbott’s manner as one of hypocritical manufactured outrage. That’s the best I’ve seen.

    It’s worth reading for the amount of detail Clarence Girl has managed to dig up which seems to have been overlooked, perhaps deliberately, by the Canberra Press gang.

  30. patricia, It’s worth reading for the amount of detail Clarence Girl has managed to dig up which seems to have been overlooked, perhaps deliberately, by the Canberra Press gang

    No, really? :shock:

  31. patriciawa and pip

    abbott hypocrisy, deliberately overlooked, possibly not, it was just not in the media information kit handed out by credlin.

    jane and pip

    as brandis has defined what is stand down from parliament abuse, the press could ask him to judge slagabella against sleazy.

    young against old
    understanding against dementia
    free choice against removed from family

  32. Sue, spot on. Isn’t elder abuse of a bed ridden senile old bloke involving a pile of money as serious as the claim of mild sexual harassment by a mature fit man who chooses not to complain and walk away but to stay, make record copies and diarise the story of his victimisation?

  33. What is so sad about the Mr. Abbott’s action in destroying every one and every thing in his quest to be PM is that none of it is necessary.

    What Mr Abbott is undermining and putting at risk our parliamentary system and our democracy. He is using the judicial and police systems as a political ramming rod on his behalf.

    He is trashing the right of the voter to elect who THEY choose.

    58% of electors did not vote for him last time.

    As everyone seem to agree on, he will win the next election. Why not wait, as everyone else would do in his place.

    This government has every right to expected to govern to the next election.

    By any stretch of the imagination, it has not put Australia at risk. The economy is strong and it has also been a reformist government.

    Today we have the lowest inflation since the 1990’s.

    All the so called fuck ups of the government have all been orchested by Mr. Abbott and the Opposition.

    Mr. Abbott should be strongly condemned for what he is doing.

  34. Coalition is not the problem: Joe as Treasurer could well be. Turnbull should be Treasurer (if not leader). Joe – if you really (REALLY) want to beef up the Treasury coffers, how about clawing back all the money Baby-Boomer Lawyers & QCs/SCs; Doctors, Dentist & Medical/Dental Specialists; Accountants & Stockbrokers DIDN’T pay for their (FREE) education at all the Ivy League Universities.. just maybe. Peter too. he increased the rate and lowered the income for repayment. And politicians taxed on a cashed-out basis – for all the plethora of their generous tax-payer funded,(i.e pensioner -to be- deprived peasants)

  35. Brian, I agree, Joe as Treasurer is the big, big, worry. He displays nothing that fills me with any confidence he can handle any portfolio he holds. I doubt he can add up.

  36. Thanks, for the link patricia. There’s no perhaps, it’s quite deliberate.

    Brian Bligh, the baby boomers free uni education was 40 years ago and it didn’t seem to prevent the Howard government from racking up surpluses. So I’d say it’s a fair bet it has absolutely nothing to do with the $70bn hole in the Noalition’s pretend coffers.

    Just for interest, would you like to name all these Ivy League universties? For example there were 2 universities in Adelaide 40 years ago and there are still only 2.

    I’d say the solution is a little closer to home like middle class welfare. Get rid of the baby bonus, private health care rebate etc.

  37. Jane, all to do with a restructure of society. We had that the wealthy by reason of their status would go onto higher learning, while we dregs might hope to work in Coles Cafeteria using icecream scoops to dish out the mash potato.

    Actually, the above was my Life Goal when I was in junior High School, that I might get a job in Coles Caf’, peferably in Bourke Street being the most upmarket place around. And especially for a girl of my working class status.

    However Fate took a hand and I ended up qualifying for an Arts Degree at Melbourne Uni. My mother was horrified! I couldn’t possibly go to uni..what a waste!!!

    Jane again..how STUPID does a Baby Bonus seem in the year 2012. Private Health rebate – if you can afford it, pay for it..the proviso on this one is that the public system has been so run down over the past decade or so, that for many there is little other option other than private. Imagine if: all that money given to the well to do was instead put into the public health system…value for $$s anyone???

  38. CU @12.39am, you’ve just taken the words out of my mouth.

    Liealot and that crew sould be trussed up in a sack and chucked in the drink. To encourage someone to make false allegations of sexual harrassment in the workplace has set those hard won rights back 50 years! it is an absolute disgrace.

    I blame James Ashby less than the conniving tawdry mongrels who put him up to this! I see him as a rather Grech-like pathetic, impressionable creature, overawed at the fuss made of him by his heroes, thinking he is fighting for a noble cause.

    I wonder if he’s starting to worry now that theounds have got his scent-Mr Slipper is refusing to lay down and let Liealot and the barrackers wipe their feet on him!

    It’s going to be a real worry for the sleazy dozen when Mr Slipper produces the evidence that his expenses are surgically precise, because if he’s clean as a whistle over that, people will see that he’s been set up.

    And if the expenses are a set up……….

    Min @6.09pm, couldn’t agree more. The opportunities for really top class infrastructure, health and education in this country were utterly squandered in the Howard years and the wool was firmly pulled down over eyes which admittedly didn’t want to see.

    It makes me so angry that people were so eager to believe that letting the public education system go to rack and ruin was just fine. And for what? A few grubby toys and a bank loan they couldn’t jump over.

  39. Yes, jane, it seems that Speaker Slipper is tweeting and reminding Tony Abbott of a thing or two. He seems to be in good form which suggests he knows he can’t lose. I wonder how comfortable Abbott and cohorts are, particularly Ashby if he is lying which seems likely. Nothing worse than having your case picked apart while you are lying low.

  40. The news on the front of The Australian that “political operatives” gave them a “dump” of information about Peter Slipper was casually wiped off by the ever present Peter Reith on The Drum, and the rest of them were hanging on his every word!

    I wonder how many of Lateline viewers were amazed at the irony of the unintended clanger by Emma Alberici last night when she asked A-G Nicola Roxon “why have the public stopped listening to Labor”, and minutes later declared that ‘the commentariat are all echoing the opposition”.

    No shit Sherlock!

  41. hi patriciawa

    i just read some of those tweets, fun times beginning.
    and peter may be feeling used by his friend tony.

  42. Sue, interesting interview. Lewis is obviously directing procedures.

    We back to the media, creating the news they report.

  43. The ‘Old Phartes Born to Rule’ boys are saying that “everyone knew” about Peter Slipper, implying that we might as well just hang him now,
    No need for legal processes to take their course., we want an election and that’s all that matters!

  44. CU

    it may come to, how long has lewis been in contact. lewis admits he has been chasing slipper for years. so as happened in the grech business, was there pressure on ashby to provide “evidence” for lewis.

  45. Pip, we do away with the expensive judicial system we have in this country. We may as well fold up the police as well.

    All we need is the media. All the evidence one needs is hearsay and rumour.

    Look at the money that money that the government can save.

    Rumour and hearsay in a City like Canberra being truth, that is a laugh.

    Mr. Slipper has also been investigated on all these rumours. I believe he might have return some money, but so have many others.

    We ignore that this man has two children and has been married twice. His last wife married him, I would say knowing the rumours. She does not appear to be mentally delayed.

    He could be as guilty as sin. It is not up to anyone but the courts to decide this.

    I am sure by today, the PM would be aware if there were problems with Cabcharge. Both the PM and Mr. Albanese are still standing behind their choice. I do not see them taking this stance if they had any doubts.

    I am sure that the government along with many of us were expecting something like this, maybe not this fast.

    The comment tonight, I heard, was that it could be another Grech, but this is not so, because there is no evidence indicating otherwise. What poor memories they have. It was not until the Senate Hearing that Grech fell to pieces. Up to then, the case looked sound.

    In my opinion, the Grech one sounded more likely to be true at the time.

    This one has not since day one.

    One thing for sure, the way the Opposition is using it for political purposes is not right.

    Surely the law makers should obey the law of the land.

  46. Maybe the PM should announce all travel expenses are being reviewed for that last four and half years.

  47. Sue and Cu, there are so many things to say about Steve Lewis.
    He said he’s been investigating Peter Slipper for abuses of the “public purse”‘ for two years.

    Gee that wouldn’t tie in with the Qld., campaign for Mal Brough I s’pose?

    Does he realise yet that his Godwin Grech story was a fizzer.

  48. The Liberal party have slipper on tape being sexually intimate with another male. Public misuse of parliamentary entitlements is a matter of public record. Who is looking ratrher foolish, Huh?

  49. A tape that there is much discussion about whether it exists or not. Who takes videos through bedroom windows of fellow workmates?.

    What is on public record is innuendo, hearsay and rumour.

    All these accusations up to this time have been investigated and found to have no basis.

    He would be among a great number that have muck up their travel entitlements.

    There is generally a long list of names each year that have to pay money back.

    Yes the man could be guilty but he has NOT been charged with any crime.

    Mr. Ashby has lodged a claim for compensation and demand that Mr; Slipper seek counselling. Who is he to demand this. What is about.

    Mr. Ashby has chosen not to follow the normal and I believe accept procedures in this matter.

    Most are expected to lodge complaint with the alleged perpetrator. If that does not work, go above the man. Seek address withing the company or in this case the government.

    It is only after all avenues of seeking address have failed, one then normally seeks help in the FWA.

    It is not normal and I imagine rarely does one goes to the highest ranking solicitor in these matters and lodge a case in the Federal Court.

    There are two respondents named in the court papers. The first has denied the truth of what is connected to him. Going as far as saying the so called facts are lies and defamatory.

    The first matter mentioned in these papers, is there for one reason, to snare the PM, blaming her for Mr. Slipper to be in an position to abuse the so called victim.

    Mr. Ashby had another course of action, he could have went to the police. Some in that first matter, borders on criminal abuse. The problem with going down this track, the evidence has to be beyond reasonable doubt. Also they have no control over how long investigations would take.

    They have not been successful in this course in relation to Mr. Thompson. If anything, it has prolonged the investigations and decisions being made.

    I am not saying Mr. Ashby is not genuine in the action he is taking.

    What I am saying, there could be another agenda.

    What I am saying, it is very convenient at have this flare up at this time.

    What I am saying is Mr. Slipper must be a complete idiot to behave this way in front of a new employee from day one. He must be the most naive or trusting man in this country.

    I have never among all the rumours and allegations against this man, hear anyone say that. In fact he is labelled as a tricky dicky. The Opposite of being stupid.

    I find it amazing that anyone could be seen as stupid for being suspicious and questioning the truth and the agenda of this action.

    After all the leader of the Opposition and many others have form in this regard.

    The Grech affair did not happen by accident.

  50. Cu and “A tape that there is much discussion about whether it exists or not. Who takes videos through bedroom windows of fellow workmates?”

    And who would have told a 3rd party to be ready to record the event. And is this recording illegal. I’m with Migs, the whole thing smells of being a setup.

  51. Is this limousine fare that high. Could city to city be between say Parramatta and Liverpool. Both cities. I do not know.

    Maybe using more than one voucher might be suspicious. The question is, is it illegal. Maybe one gets fed up with having every trip questioned. The still are only allegations by one person, who has been sought out by the media.

    It could be that it is more like blackening his name.

    According to Berris Crossin – a driver with Canberra Hire Cars – Mr Slipper would ask to fill out four or five Cabcharge dockets to cover a single trip because ‘it didn’t look as bad as one big fare’, News Limited reported on Wednesday.

    and

    According to Department of Finance records, Mr Slipper spent $575 for six trips on April 19, 2010 – with one fare costing $75.68 and described by Mr Slipper as ‘city to city’, News Limited reported.

    http://bigpondnews.com/articles/Politics/2012/04/25/Driver_talks_about_Slippers_cab_dockets_743269.html

  52. CU

    in the radio interview of Hadley with Steve Lewis. Lewis said he had been in contact with Ashby for some time. Did Ashby and Lewis discuss the “sexual harrassment”, the best lawyers to engage, the forensic testing of the phone, the angagement of a PR consultant? And who is paying the Lawyers? Is the PR consultant considering a tell all interview. What agreements have been signed or considered with Steve Lewis and the Telegraph.

    But I digress the first question should be who approached who? Ashby to Lewis or Lewis to Ashby? Was there an intermediary?

    Oh if only there were an investigative journalist somewhere but instead all we have are these punks accepting what Lewis choses to expose.

  53. This does not appear to be a problem for Ms. Jackson or Mr. Ashby. This article is about the legal profession and small business. Surely the same holds true for Mr. Ashby.

    There are alternative and probably more satisfying routes that could have been taken.

    One at the first instance does not head for the Federal Court. The government by this action is now not in the position to handle of investigate the allegations of Mr. Ashby.

    Is the action Mr. Ashby taking appropriate.

    Have you ever been to a lawyer? Have you ever been a party to a Court case? If you have or know someone who has, then you will know how expensive lawyers and going to court can be.

    and

    No wonder the lawyers may discourage or even attack attempts to promote alternative dispute resolution processes. Alternative dispute resolution processes are those processes that are alternatives to the traditional court system.

    and

    In contrast, alternative dispute resolution processes are cooperative in the sense of trying to get the parties together to help them find some common ground as a way of trying to resolve the dispute. In an alternative dispute resolution process, such as mediation, an independent third party will try and assist the parties in having a constructive dialogue with a view to getting the parties themselves to resolve the dispute.

    http://www.thepunch.com.au/articles/cost-of-australian-justice-spirals-out-of-control/

  54. If (ha) it is a setup, and remembering “the Grech” do you think the msm will finaly have a good go at Abbott and co. or will the lead story be about Julia’s bum or other such waffle….. I know what im bet’n

  55. Of course the media are going to give us records of other MP’s to make an comparisons. The question is, has he done anything illegal. They are going to name others as well.

    …and Mr. Wilkie will get what he wants under Mr. Abbott. I believe not. He will do as he always has, what is best for him.

    We had Mr. Reith saying last night,, that there is no way Mr. Abbott will do a deal with Mr. Wilkie. We have Mr. Abbott , being so cocky at this moment, saying he does not make deals. Adding that it was making deals that got the PM into trouble.

    ANDREW Wilkie has become the second independent MP to declare that Peter Slipper should not reclaim the Speaker’s chair before he is cleared of all fraud and sexual harassment allegations, in a blow to the government’s hopes of a quick return.

    http://www.theaustralian.com.au/national-affairs/in-depth/andrew-wilkie-adds-to-angst-over-peter-slipper/story-fndckad0-1226337561531

  56. The Courier-Mail can also reveal the name of the limousine driver, Antwan Kaikaty, who has driven the Queensland MP around Sydney for the past 19 years, including in recent months in a luxurious $230,000 black Audi A8.

    Mr Kaikaty confirmed that Mr Slipper would supply multiple Cabcharge dockets to pay for Sydney travel, including for three trips in January and February. But he disputed claims made by staffer James Ashby in the Federal Court that the MP would hand over blank documents to cover the fare.

    Mr Kaikaty said Mr Slipper had been “my client” for several years and would provide him with a “few vouchers” at the end of travel.

    Last night Mr Slipper said all Cabcharges were “completed correctly and we

    http://www.couriermail.com.au/news/queensland/bizarre-travel-by-slipper-exposed/story-e6freoof-1226337545181

  57. Mr Ashby, a 33-year-old adviser to Mr Slipper, is suing the Commonwealth and claims he was sexually harassed by Mr Slipper.

    He also plans to provide a statement to the Australian Federal Police about his claims that he saw Cabcharge dockets being misused.The fresh claims about Mr Slipper’s Cabcharge use involve a possible breach of the Commonwealth Crimes Act. Canberra Hire Cars, which is owned by the Aerial Capital Group, said it was willing to co-operate with the Federal Police, including providing detailed GPS records that track of each individual trip its limousines make. Group managing director Mark Bramston said: “We have information on any trip and if the police request the information, we are required to give it to them”.

    The Commonwealth Criminal Code Act makes a crime of supplying information that is “false and misleading” or “omits any matter or thing without which the information is misleading”.

    The offence carries a potential jail term of 12 months.

    http://www.dailytelegraph.com.au/news/sydney-nsw/speaker-peter-slipper-disguised-lavish-limo-trips/story-fn7q4q9f-1226337480234

  58. With thanks to Tony Abbott Will Never Become Prime Minister FB group..

    Thanks to Ken Williamson, for this tweet from Slipper to The Australian:

    “Slipper to the Australian on twitter. Peter Slipper MP@PeterSlipperMP
    Follow
    @AussiePlease#auspol If I had voted another way, My ”friend” Tony wouldn’t have become Leader”.

  59. with one fare costing $75.68 8O

    That wouldn’t even get Mr Slipper from the airport to his electorate in a taxi! It’d cost me that much to get from Brisbane airport to home by taxi. (last time I did that over a decade ago, it cost >$50) What is this beat-up about??

  60. CU @12.18am, I think you’ve hit the nail on the head. won’t there be a scurrying and sweating.

    Anyway, if Slipper is as confident as it seems, he may have a devastating blow to deliver. I wouldn’t be surprised if he has.

    If he is found not to have fiddled the cabcharge books, it will cast doubt on Ashby’s honesty, I believe.

    And if that’s the case, the government may be able to weigh in and have Ashby investigsted. That would set the cat amongst the pigeons, because Ashby is such a flake and would probably crack under the pressure of a couple of large wallopers.

    What is also suspicious imo is if Ashby is being represented free of charge by a high powered H R Nicholls lawyer.

    As for Steve lewis, didn’t he say he had the goods last time?

  61. CU

    how about this proposition, but first a bit of background information.
    In the UK there was the Max Mosely case, a story on the sexual partying of Mr Mosely. It was found that News tried to blackmail the women at the Mosely party, even though they were consenting adults, they informed Mr Mosely.

    Now for the Slipper story. The day it was in the papers News Ltd ran photos of Mr Slipper accompanied by his wife. To me it appears News Ltd were trying to put undue influence on her, to others it could appear to be blackmail. Or even just applying pressure to a marriage.

  62. Jane and:

    Getting Liealot into the Lodge, Bacchus.

    That’s about it..it melds with The Theme that this government has no legitimacy.

  63. It appears the wife is standing by him. In this case, I believe that counts. They have been married five years, after a long relationship. She must have known about the rumours before she married him.

    It is starting to appear he did try to cover the cost of his journey by using more than one voucher. The question is, is it illegal. If the trip is legal, one wonders why he did it. There does not appear the allegations are about illegal trips but how he paid for them.

    It is alleged, if found guilty, the sentence could be one year jail. Maximum I believe. I am not too sure what he could be found guilty of.

    It is still an orchested means of getting rid of a government.

    Why are they not willing to let things run their natural course. Much better for democracy.

  64. A complex man, but not one without supporters.

    Seems that larrikan and liar is OK for a PM but not Speaker.

    With Abbott, it is little like the kettle calling the pot black

    This morning, Archbishop Hepworth told AM Mr Slipper was “in the tradition of the Australian larrikin MP … that is, people who are interesting, have bad patches and very good patches”.

    “He’s a daily mass Christian when he’s in Canberra. And his speech-making and voting record in the House, over many years, has been consistent on the life issues, abortion, euthanasia, capital punishment, on religious freedom issues,” he said.

    Archbishop Hepworth said he had been “surprised” by the recent allegations which have forced Mr Slipper to stand aside from the Speaker’s job.

    “I’ve heard rumours,” he said.

    “I’ve pursued some of these rumours in connection with Peter Slipper and I have been satisfied that there was no proof existing, so I carry on.

    “There are a number of Peter Slippers. There’s the very devoted husband to [wife] Inge, and she is a strong defender of Peter, [a] strong Liberal woman you’d say in the Menzies tradition.

    “I’ve also seen Peter drink too much. I’ve spoken to him about this. I’ve seen the arrogance that comes about when that happens.

    “So I’ve seen the complexity of Peter Slipper. And what we’re seeing at the present time is one of those sides, although he, let it be said, denies the moral and sexual wrongdoing in the harassment case and also denies the criminal matter.”

    Stand aside

    AUDIO: Peter Slipper asked to stand aside from his church duties (AM)
    Archbishop Hepworth repeated his calls for Mr Slipper to stand down from his church roles while the allegations against him are investigated.

    “I’ve said to Peter that I think it is not appropriate to stand aside from the speakership and not stand aside from an important office in a church position,” he said.

    “We’re having an exchange of texts. I’m meeting him later in the week in Brisbane and his wife. They’ve both actually got flu at the moment, so I’m not pursuing that until Friday when I’m in Brisbane.

    “He’s obviously quite shattered by this. I think he had – well I know that he had made a very significant personal effort to improve the standing of Parliament, and particularly Question Time.

    “I’m just trying to qualify the good with the bad and to note that Peter Slipper is a complex character.

    “I have an open mind about the current things because I’m in no position to make a judgment.”

    http://www.abc.net.au/news/2012-04-25/anglicans-want-slipper-to-stand-aside/3971334

  65. jane, the problem I believe the government might not be able to ask one question of Mr. Ashby by him taking the matter to the Federal Court.

    A little sub judice,respect would not go amiss in this matter. It appears everyone can say what they like, except the government about the court matters.

    I read somewhere, it is two prong attack. In the media and in the courts. Somehow that does not seem fair.

  66. Says it all.

    Everyone has a book in them
    April 25, 2012 – 11:38 — Admin

    The Daily Telegraph’s Steve Lewis and the ABC’s Chris Uhlmann have teamed up to write a fictional work centred on Federal parliament.

    Perhaps Steve Lewis got a taste for writing fiction after Utegate?

    http://www.blogotariat.com/node/341826

  67. This is what is important, not whether Mr. Slipper used one or three vouchers to pay for his transport. Whether or not in his own home, he made sexual advances.

    This is what has happen in the UK,in spite of the massive cuts they made to welfare. Why can people see it is not as easy as cutting spending or wasted as some say.

    I do hope that Mr. Swan is being extra careful in the cuts he intends to make.

    If not, we are in trouble.

    The only saving grace, is that it would be many times worse under Mr. Abbott.

    Their cuts would be on the grounds, not of waste but ideology.

    Ideology like religious fanaticism can be dangerous.

    In terms of that data for March 2012:

    The budget deficit was higher deficit than in March 2011.
    Government net borrowing was higher than in March 2011
    Public sector net debt at the end of March 2012 was £1022.5 billion (66.0 per cent of GDP) compared to £905.3 billion (60.5 per cent of GDP) at the end of March 2011.

    and

    These are the facts. They are telling us a story about what is actually happening on the ground in these nations. The question that any reasonable person has to ask themselves is what is driving this data – the causal mechanisms.

    Further, one has to ask – which economic theories predicted these trends and which theories suggested otherwise.

    Modern Monetary Theory (MMT) predicted that as a result of the fiscal austerity plans, the British economy would slow down again as private consumers and firms cut back on their own spending driven strongly by the fear of unemployment and flat sales conditions that accompany that situation.

    Mainstream theory pushed the notion of Ricardian Equivalence which claims that that private spending is weak because we are scared of the future tax implications of the rising budget deficits.

    and

    Conclusion

    I will check the UK National Accounts data later. Given that the government has not been able to cut its spending significantly over the last year I expect the data will show a further slowing towards total stagnation if not modest recession.

    But if the policy choices remain in place then it is certain that the UK economy will follow the path of its European neighbours, which are deliberately undermining any chance that their economies will grow any time soon.

    The data is not just about inanimate facts. It records a mounting human tragedy as the elites play out their fantasies and ideologies at the expense of the rest of us. At the bottom of the heap, poverty rates are rising and other dysfunctional pathologies (family breakdown, suicide, drug and alcohol abuse, crime and the rest of them) are rising rapidly.

    When will this experiment end?

    That is enough for today!

    http://bilbo.economicoutlook.net/blog/?p=19152

  68. As I said, one can read what they like into that transcript. Maybe even what the limousine drivers are saying.

    Remember, Mr. Ashby works as a spin doctor. He would be, I believe verse in such knowledge and skills.

    This whole Slipper thing got me thinking.

    I remembered an exercise I loved to use with actors. You basically craft a small two hander between two partners and you get actors out to perform the piece. Say the lines are

    ACTOR ONE: Where the fuck are the tickets

    ACTOR TWO: How the fuck should I know. You would lose your own head if it wasnt screwed on.

    ACTOR ONE: Whereas you just screw around.

    On its own the actors are already making decisions about their character and composing how they would get up and act this out. They have made assumptions. They are guessing at how their acting partner will deliver a line so they can deliver the one they already set in their head. A very dangerous thing to do as an actor. Expect something and therefore rehearse for that. Hence the reliance on all those improvisation games.

    But expecting the unexpected is prempting yourself to expect something. So while you should be ready for anything, you should also not be. The actors paradox. Anyway, a pair would volunteer and would be just about to start when I change the scene they have in their head. They are probably expecting a row in the privacy of the characters in the scenes home. An intimate place. One where they can get all shouty at each other.

    I tell them I want this scene to be at a crowded line entering an event. I tell them that they dont want to cause a scene. Of course it can end in a scene. My instructions are to try and avoid one. Suddenly what they had expected to come and may even have rehearsed in their head is gone. The context of the scene changes from an intimate row to a discreet one. Same lines. Same intent. Different situation.

    And that got me thinking about context. The text messages released in the Slipper/Ashby matter is a script. But what is the context? What is the situation?

    For example. Allow me to pen a piece of script. It is a SMS conversation between a character called John and a character called Mike.

    John: You getting your rocks off?

    Mike: Shit yeah! Charlie is about to explode! Its fantastic! You should be here.

    Now lets paint in some context. John is checking on a date Mike is having with Charlie. Rocks off can be literal.

    Lets shake up that context. Lets say John, Mike and Charlie are talking about a football game. John is not watching as he is at work while his house mates are watching at home. John and Mike support one team and Charlie supports the other. John and Mike’s team are winning.

    Same words. Completely different meaning.

    Something to think about while you all get your rocks off on the next juicy piece of gossip.

    http://ashghebranious.wordpress.com/2012/04/25/get-your-rocks-off/

  69. Last night I wrote a poem for Joe Hockey.

    The dog whistlers

    The dog whistlers are diseased,
    poisoned by their cultivated ignorance,
    loved only for their carefully metered benevolence.

    They breath heavily,
    and let the spittle fly when it is time for speeches.
    They happily spread their diseases with their bad breath and flying saliva.

    They would prefer the people to feel sick,
    as it helps them to cultivate more of their beloved ignorance,
    and make diminished versions of themselves.

    They will not be found drinking in the inn with strange travelers and angry locals.
    They keep their distance from true reason,
    as it harms the veneer they apply to their crust-like words.

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