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Politics live: February 6, 2013

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  • Good morning Katherine, I look forward to another day in question time and the unlikely event of a hint of a new policy from the opposition. On behalf of all sane voters in the next election could you please pass on our pleas to your colleagues in the press gallery to ditch the easy options of trivial articles about Rudd Conroy ski lodges etc and give us some analysis of any policies put out by any side of politics

    Commenter
    antiques/tweedheads
    Location
    Gold Coast
    Date and time
    February 06, 2013, 9:54AM
    • Good morning Katharine, I look forward to another day in question time and the unlikely event that the PM will answer any questions.
      I also look forward to the unlikely event of the Speaker holding the PM accountable to answer the questions being asked.

      Commenter
      beasleyst
      Location
      Sydney
      Date and time
      February 06, 2013, 10:13AM
    • Welcome back to the blog antiques/tweed heads. Personally I hate skiing.

      Commenter
      Katharine Murphy
      Date and time
      February 06, 2013, 10:17AM
    • Oh Katharine, I doubt you've given skiing a fair go. Bracing fresh air, the excitement of pitting your body against the mountain slope at speed, the pathos of watching somebody else hurt themselves and thanking your lucky stars it wasn't you. Then there's the thrill of opening the next credit card bill.

      Won't miss it for quids.

      Commenter
      SteveH.
      Date and time
      February 06, 2013, 10:25AM
    • I totally agree @antiques. How dare the media report on Federal Labor links to the biggest ever corruption scandal enveloping a state political party, Labor or Liberal. The media should indeed be following the scripting released to ministers by McTernan this morning to downplay the links and basically say "nothing to see here" in the hope it goes away. Because if it does not, it is indeed the final nail in the Gillard Government coffin.

      Commenter
      Tim of Altona
      Date and time
      February 06, 2013, 10:31AM
    • I'm really fond of Victorian Detectives staying the night in a Terrigal 4 star hotel before making a midday arrest (cameras in tow) on the same day Abbott has a Press Club address.

      Commenter
      J. Fraser
      Location
      Queensland
      Date and time
      February 06, 2013, 10:50AM
    • Looks like "SteveH." is an out there sporty feminist.

      Commenter
      J. Fraser
      Location
      Queensland
      Date and time
      February 06, 2013, 10:51AM
    • @beasletst

      I'm not overly optimistic on either count. What about you J.Fraser ?

      Commenter
      Hasbeen
      Location
      Umina
      Date and time
      February 06, 2013, 11:19AM
    • @"Hasbeen"

      I will wait until I see "SteveH." on the piste.

      Commenter
      J. Fraser
      Location
      Queensland
      Date and time
      February 06, 2013, 11:36AM
    • beasleyst
      I look forward to the opposition asking a question of ANY minister. But then, asking a question might expose their lack of knowledge on anything other than gossip and mudslinging.

      Commenter
      Steve
      Date and time
      February 06, 2013, 1:14PM
    • @JFraser, you seem to want to share a conspiracy theory with us? Is it that Mr Abbott is behind all the issues facing Mr thomson? Or is it Rupert Murdoch?

      Commenter
      Carstnndog
      Location
      Here
      Date and time
      February 06, 2013, 2:36PM
  • Will the Abbott team be commenting on the children's school uniforms.

    Will the Abbott team be commenting on the colours being used (predominantly Green), with no one using red.

    Abbott team comments always follow their leader and talk about the most inane things.

    Commenter
    J. Fraser
    Location
    Queensland
    Date and time
    February 06, 2013, 10:14AM
    • @JFraser, you may not be the first to comment, but you are the most active commenter....

      Commenter
      Carstendog
      Location
      Here
      Date and time
      February 06, 2013, 12:19PM
  • I'm losing the nerve. Has someone got a vodoo doll on the ALP? Why is it that every move in the right direction we take, something bites our rear? If it's not Thomson, it's now Obeid and his tentacles. Any why can't Rudd just go to China on an 8 month diplomatic mission?

    Commenter
    Jackthelad
    Date and time
    February 06, 2013, 10:30AM
    • It is simple to understand.

      Bbig busines want Libs to win the next election and the media survive by paid advertising.

      When Labor are in office, there is a more towards greate equality. When Libs are in office, big business gets bigger

      Commenter
      ccb
      Date and time
      February 06, 2013, 11:22AM
    • Are you for real or just naive? Have you ever heard the adage "you reap what you sew" or "if you lay with dogs you'll get fleas"????

      Commenter
      Naive?
      Date and time
      February 06, 2013, 12:09PM
    • Karma. You can fool the punters some of the time, but no longer any of the time. It is all a matter of 'the law' Bring more on I say......go back to the last 50 of politics and see who and what jumps out :)
      ALLLL pollies , state , federal and territories.

      Commenter
      220 sleeps
      Location
      to go
      Date and time
      February 06, 2013, 12:45PM
    • Rudd should have quit last election. He joins the wrecker Hughes and the clown McMahon. maybe a hybrid of both

      Commenter
      Peter warrington
      Location
      marrickville
      Date and time
      February 06, 2013, 12:51PM
    • ccb another way of looking at things is that the ALP enacts laws beneficial to their friends in the union leadership whereas the coalition are focussed on laws that will be of economic benefit for Australia... I guess how we word it depends on our political views and who we want to win the election...

      Commenter
      A Bodhi Nuisance
      Date and time
      February 06, 2013, 1:02PM
    • a Bodhi nuisance, how does the National Disabilty scheme benefit union members. Or the NBN benefit union members.

      I suppose raising a flood levy for QLD for the 2011 floods is for the benefit of unions as well.

      Or what about the educational reforms and funding? Do they benefit unions as well.

      Union membership is negligible in comparison to the number of workers in Aus.

      If anything, although unions achieved many reforms in the early to mid 1900's unions started to change by the 1980's.

      Commenter
      ccb
      Date and time
      February 06, 2013, 1:37PM
    • well if there is one thing I'll give the Libs credit for is their ability to hatch up a good conspiracy whether any substance to it all, doesn't count. the compliant MSM publishes accusations and innuendos day after day and the public consumes it. The damage is done.
      Ashbygate, Thomson, AWU.
      Whatever the outcome the poison has been instilled.That is what I can give them credit for. Smear.
      Children Overboard anyone, that was a prime example of smearing refugees.
      Big end of town wants their boys back, and at no expense.

      Commenter
      A country gal
      Date and time
      February 06, 2013, 1:49PM
    • I like your tinted logic ccb.

      How does Abbott's overly generous paid parental leave scheme help big business, seems to me it would work directly against them..

      Lawyered, kid.

      Commenter
      AllAbbott'sFault
      Date and time
      February 06, 2013, 4:56PM
  • The Pulse 10:48AM

    The "new" Abbott.

    No chance of the "new" Abbott team though.

    Commenter
    J. Fraser
    Location
    Queensland
    Date and time
    February 06, 2013, 10:57AM
    • Ohhh snap!

      Commenter
      AllAbbott'sFault
      Date and time
      February 06, 2013, 4:42PM
  • Does Gillard not see that having Hawke there is bad karma ? He is her mentor, and I think he has given her some bad directions.
    I long to see the stories that will be given out about the time in the snow.
    I am curious to see if any other labor person has had any other free board and meals at any other ' place' that the Obeids own. Or just how many others have had the same luxury of 'free' stays.

    Commenter
    220 sleeps
    Location
    and counting
    Date and time
    February 06, 2013, 11:12AM
    • Try waking up.

      Anyone who sleeps for 220 days solid deserves the government they get.

      Commenter
      J. Fraser
      Location
      Queensland
      Date and time
      February 06, 2013, 11:38AM
    • Now Now Mr/Ms/ ? Fraser, it is no good trying to push my buttons. A big fail for you :)

      Commenter
      220 sleeps
      Location
      at eden monaro
      Date and time
      February 06, 2013, 12:43PM
  • Expect to see plenty of complaining from Abbott.

    And of course his cheer team has started earlier.

    At least they lead in something.

    Commenter
    J. Fraser
    Location
    Queensland
    Date and time
    February 06, 2013, 11:27AM
    • J Fraser two words only for you "tick tock"

      Commenter
      homer j
      Date and time
      February 06, 2013, 1:36PM
    • Here's an interesting one ..."tick tock".

      2 words.

      Keep up the good work.

      Respectfully yours
      Fork Awf.

      Commenter
      J. Fraser
      Location
      Queensland
      Date and time
      February 06, 2013, 4:39PM
  • Katherine, interested in you link to Keane's Crikey column. It was my take exactly since the PM's Press Club speech on media coverage across all platforms.
    Did you link the article because you agree with his analysis on the Press gallery's group think re `chaos' headlines when no chaos existed?

    Commenter
    T J Maller
    Location
    East Perth
    Date and time
    February 06, 2013, 11:30AM
    • G'day T.J. Thanks for asking. I'm a big fan of Bernard Keane. He's one of the best commentators on the political park in my view. We don't always agree on every point, but I think he brings a cut through perspective. Cheers.

      Commenter
      Katharine Murphy
      Date and time
      February 06, 2013, 12:02PM
    • Yes, I think Keane can be a bit too cynical sometimes (the press gallery disease), but he has nailed it this time.

      It is a tragedy that the collective press journalism of this country is not doing its job of presenting the serious issues of policy today so that people have facts to decided which Party will best govern after September 14 and which policies will serve Australia's interests best.

      I have my views, which are obvious from my other posts, but this is a more serious issue than political partisanship. When journalists fail to do their job properly and let politicians of all stripes get away with subterfuge and superficial slogans, we finish up with the AWB wheat scandal and the Obeid circus.

      it is not enough to get plaudits for scoring points and calling the moves; good journalists should be holding all politicians to account in the details, not the gaffes.

      Commenter
      Whyalla Wipeout
      Date and time
      February 06, 2013, 12:35PM
  • The Pulse 11:12 AM

    Good informative article by Mark Russel.

    Wonder if the Abbott team see the picture of Thomson's wife attending court with him and wonder if they hang their heads in shame at their kangaroo court "Comments" that would be so hurtful to her.

    Not likely considering their leaders previous comments.

    Commenter
    J. Fraser
    Location
    Queensland
    Date and time
    February 06, 2013, 11:33AM
    • I am not sure the Federal Opposition is responsible for Mr Thomson being charged. I'd suggets the police have built up a case and the charges are before the court. Mr Thomson has plenty of opportunities to defend himself.

      if you believe that the Opposition is interfering with "Natural" Justice, I'd suggest you take your concerns to the police or the Victorian DPP..... Otherwise your comment is just pure spin

      Commenter
      Carstendog
      Location
      Here
      Date and time
      February 06, 2013, 12:24PM
    • castendog, a Lib lead state laid the charges and a Lib lead state arrested and strip searched Thomson where the press were waiting for the arrest.

      154 charges and no witnesses?

      Sounds like another Slipper/Ashby debacle to me.

      Commenter
      ccb
      Date and time
      February 06, 2013, 1:34PM
    • I think you will find it was the witness list that wasn't produced. I'd be very surprised if all the witnesses were there at a committal mention.

      Commenter
      Carstnndog
      Location
      Here
      Date and time
      February 06, 2013, 2:34PM
    • CBC what does the state government have to do with Thompson being arrested? Do you think Thomson would be off scot-free if Labor were in charge?

      You are willing to believe in some unfounded conspiracy case involving law enforcement and the state government, but you can't (refuse to?) accept the huge body of evidence built against the guy who can only manage to deny any wrongdoing.

      Commenter
      AllAbbott'sFault
      Date and time
      February 06, 2013, 4:41PM
  • @J.Fraser

    >>Expect to see plenty of complaining from Abbott. And of course his cheer team has started earlier<<

    15 posts so far this morning on this forum, 6 of which are from you, condemning Abbott and Victoria Police over the Thomson affair. Who is the cheer team?

    Commenter
    Ben C of Canberra
    Date and time
    February 06, 2013, 11:44AM
    • I'm not going to check your count.

      Hope you have better luck with your next endeavour.

      Commenter
      J. Fraser
      Location
      Queensland
      Date and time
      February 06, 2013, 4:36PM
  • Skiing is one of those expensive but easy forms of snobbism, in Australia anyway!

    Otherwise and until the elections, I think Tony Abbot should be very wary of his back from Bishop's knife! The same goes for the Gillard & Rudd's knife...

    Commenter
    majid
    Location
    highgate hill
    Date and time
    February 06, 2013, 12:03PM
    • Bishop as PM - aagh although she does have better hair than Tony (or did b4 his makeover).

      Commenter
      zacca
      Location
      adelaide
      Date and time
      February 06, 2013, 12:34PM
  • 154 charges against Thomson and no witnesses. Ooops. who stuffed up

    Commenter
    ccb
    Date and time
    February 06, 2013, 12:35PM
    • Yep,but it took six cops to arrest and strip search him - they have no time to provide witnesses.

      Talk about Keystone Cops - this would be funny if it was not so serious.

      Commenter
      zacca
      Location
      adelaide
      Date and time
      February 06, 2013, 1:27PM
    • It's a filing of the charges. No witnesses are called at this stage, or didn't you know that?

      Commenter
      Rodrigo
      Date and time
      February 06, 2013, 2:05PM
    • Rodrigo, according to the 2011 Listing Protocols for Magistrates Court of Victoria on a first mention an application for adjournment must state the status of the case, whether a brief has been received wehther a case conference has been held and other relevent information.

      A brief would include all witness statements.

      Now I have lost track of the case against Thomson so please feel free to step in. But do not the allegations relate to events quite a few years ago?

      And how long have the police been looking into the allegations? From at least last year? Two years or more?

      Me thinks that there has been a rush at the last moment to get Thomson arrested just after Gillard announced the election date.

      I hope I am wrong because otherwise politics is far dirtier than I suspected and it is nothing to do with justice

      Commenter
      ccb
      Date and time
      February 06, 2013, 2:32PM
    • All you Craig Thomson apologisers should calm down a little. The police has a long and complex path to filing charges against anyone. After all, it has taken how many years for this to make it through "Fair Work Australia" (quotes deliberate)? The FWA (Fairly Worthless Agency) process was a pre-cursor for the police even touching it. Yes, there may have been a poor brief of evidence, but that does not mean the evidence isn't there. The police may have a reluctant witness (maybe an escort with a day-job), so cut them some slack. Most police are union members themselves and a case like this would not sit well with them - but they certainly would not be taking a political angel in support of the coalition. To assert that is pretty out of touch with reality. So drop the conspiracy theories, accept that the police is doing their thankless job and just wait for the courts to take their grindingly slow time and enjoy that justice delayed is ALP kept in power.

      Commenter
      Art
      Location
      Melbourne
      Date and time
      February 06, 2013, 3:58PM
    • Agreed! it seems rather odd that the Vic Police had a dodgy warrant, set the bail conditions to inflict portrayal of guilt and there are no witness. By the way what is the cost to the tax payer for all this nonsense?
      It will all come out, the truth will prevail!

      Commenter
      Neenie
      Date and time
      February 06, 2013, 4:02PM
  • Propaganda? Why would a politician's use of social media tools call into question their message, if it's in line with their position? Wayne Swan appealed to the younger generation, to come out in full force on social media on the ALP website in 2011. What's sauce for the goose is sauce for the ganda.

    Commenter
    Catherin
    Date and time
    February 06, 2013, 12:42PM
    • I watched to the end of Joe's bleat. At the very end he asserted that only the Coalition had 'real solutions'.

      Well, what are these real solutions? I have seen nothing other than a couple of piecemeal policies involving stripping government benefits from low-income people saving for their super and from low and middle income parents needing funds for their children's school uniforms and books at the start of a school year.

      In the meantime, they insist that they are better economic managers. Where is the evidence? No good pointing at Costello. He did a runner when the going got tough. Howard is out of the game too. I've seen no evidence that anyone on the front bench can count beyond 10 without taking off their shoes and socks.

      Come on Joe, if you have 'real solutions' show them. Otherwise, you should shut up and leave the economic discussion to those who know what they are talking about.

      Commenter
      Whyalla Wipeout
      Date and time
      February 06, 2013, 12:46PM
      • +1. WW

        P.S. Love the new improved site Katherine.

        Commenter
        Julia
        Date and time
        February 06, 2013, 1:59PM
    • Katharine, which meaning of "homily" did you intend re Mr Oliver's speech?

      Commenter
      Peter warrington
      Location
      marrickville
      Date and time
      February 06, 2013, 12:53PM
      • How classic of Murdoch to have the temerity to tweet he is being hacked by the Chinese!
        Guess he knows a thing or two about hacking and a multitude of other privacy invasive means.
        Just desserts.

        Commenter
        A country gal
        Date and time
        February 06, 2013, 1:29PM
        • I think it was probably his most humble tweet of the day.

          Commenter
          J. Fraser
          Location
          Queensland
          Date and time
          February 06, 2013, 4:33PM
      • I do think the current Labor party is doomed doomed doomed.

        How can a party alienate its base (workers/unions) with its Workchoices lite, 457 Visas etc etc, lose the progressive left to the Greens and fail to pick up any Centre Right votes as this is where it has re-cast itself expect to win an election?

        Shift to the centre right, lose the left and pick up not a single vote of their new, self chosen constituency?

        Its game over man, its game over! :)

        Commenter
        Mark S
        Location
        Melbourne
        Date and time
        February 06, 2013, 1:40PM
        • +1 Mark S. I'm a young university student who basically fits the definition of left-wing, latte-sipping youth [despite my distaste for coffee of any kind]. I should be part of the ALP's target audience - but I'm pushed to the Greens because the ALP are too far to the right. Conservative friends of mine, meanwhile, are nervous about voting for Mr Abbott, considering him too socially conservative even for them! [Major issues on which they tend to disagree are abortion and same-sex rights]. Really, it's a global trend in Australian politics whereby it shifts to the social right.

          Commenter
          kentaurides
          Date and time
          February 06, 2013, 3:13PM
        • kentaurides, your conservative friends might fairly question and disagree with the Liberal Party position on gay marriage (as a conservative I know I do) but go back to them and ask them how important an issue is it and is it a vote changer?

          Commenter
          Scott
          Date and time
          February 06, 2013, 3:52PM
        • @Scott - a fair question. For a couple, yes, on its own it is (although I suspect they intend to do something with their vote other than give it to the ALP/Greens). For others, it combines with other concerns they have so as to make them vote no. For the vast majority, I'd probably say that the fact that the ALP's stance on same-sex rights is similarly muddled prevents much movement - they don't have an alternative.

          Commenter
          kentaurides
          Date and time
          February 06, 2013, 4:27PM
        • kentaurides, traditionally Labor was the party of the workers. Henceforth the union connection.

          If you were a youthful Labor type person you would be out there is a job instead of sipping late

          the late set are the right wingers, youth whose parents have money and can support their children in their luxury.

          Commenter
          ccb
          Date and time
          February 06, 2013, 4:43PM
        • @ccb - I'm fully aware of the origin of the ALP. Nonetheless, there is definitely a tradition of stereotyping uni students who are left-leaning as being 'liberal latte-sippers' - I've had that hurled at me as an insult before. These days, more young people than ever before are engaging in tertiary education due to the fact that it seems you cannot get a job that offers opportunities for advancement without a qualification. [Bit hard to be out there working if nobody will employ you].

          Commenter
          kentaurides
          Date and time
          February 06, 2013, 4:55PM
      • I am not surprised by Mr Oliver's non-answer re the HSU. Even the police couldn't give Thompson's lawyers a list of witnesses today. Really strange that police can charge someone with something but be unable to say who their witnesses to the fraud are. So Oliver's stance seems half-way understandable to me. The whole HSU thing is weird from beginning to not-yet-end.

        Commenter
        Long Xuyen
        Location
        Viet Nam
        Date and time
        February 06, 2013, 1:41PM
        • Did the PM really not know what a 5-sided shape is called?? Maybe Bob Hawke should make a comeback (with Kev as deputy).

          Commenter
          JJ
          Date and time
          February 06, 2013, 2:08PM
          • Don't worry, the PM also forgot about not having a "carbon tax under a Government she led". I think helpful voters will remind her of that promise come September.....

            Commenter
            Carstnndog
            Location
            Here
            Date and time
            February 06, 2013, 2:41PM
          • Great news "carstendog" .... that way voters wont have to remember the b/s from Abbott and the Abbott team.

            Commenter
            J. Fraser
            Location
            Queensland
            Date and time
            February 06, 2013, 4:30PM
        • Whyalla WIpe Out ,Scary stuff. Abbott
          There will no carbon tax BUT I DETERMINE TO PUT THE PRICE ON CARBON. Gillard
          Who do we trust?
          .

          Commenter
          Wendyv
          Date and time
          February 06, 2013, 2:10PM
          • Piste is what you get on most skiing trips.

            Commenter
            bratman
            Location
            mount druitt
            Date and time
            February 06, 2013, 3:00PM
            • WS to TA: "I'll see your Stop The Boats and raise you Jobs And Growth."

              Who's three-word sloganeering now?

              Commenter
              brian
              Date and time
              February 06, 2013, 3:19PM
              • Gee Peta lovely shot. Things not going to plan today.
                Have a break and join Wyatt on the floor with his "surplus" Lego blocks.
                I was hoping QT would've moved on but oh no, it's the same old same pettiness.
                How about some real questions and debate.

                Commenter
                A country gal
                Date and time
                February 06, 2013, 3:26PM
                • I wonder how Credlin and Bishop (the younger) must have felt when Abbott was doing his childless rant.

                  Squirming like a worm on a hot plate perhaps.

                  Abbott doesn't even have the class to empty my rubbish bin and recycle bin once a week.

                  Commenter
                  J. Fraser
                  Location
                  Queensland
                  Date and time
                  February 06, 2013, 4:50PM
              • Don't you think Mr. Abbott looks oddly like a Thunderbird puppet with his new makeover look?

                Commenter
                Neenie
                Date and time
                February 06, 2013, 3:57PM
                • Checkout Denise Allens take on it on IA. More about why the MSM didn't run with it as per PMs glasses.

                  Commenter
                  A country gal
                  Date and time
                  February 06, 2013, 4:26PM
                • Hmmm, wasn't there also a stringed muppet on t'birds with glasses?

                  Commenter
                  Max
                  Date and time
                  February 06, 2013, 4:29PM
              • Think it's a bit ridiculous that QT being used up by Labor's obvious abandonment to a commitment of restoring the budget to surplus.

                Even more ridiculous is the fact that nobody has raised or addressed the article that was subtly pushed over the weekend about the government no longer continuing to fund school laptops and the implications for families and what this government intends to do. Will the continue to fund this? Will it be removed from the curriculum if not? What has been achieved by having laptops in our schools apart from being "modern".

                Commenter
                El Seano
                Date and time
                February 06, 2013, 3:59PM
                • Very good point. Perhaps Fraser and Country gal would like to answer you instead (though I'm sure it'll be some dribble about Abbott instead of anything constructive to convince voters the ALP is not abandoning its base).

                  Commenter
                  Max
                  Date and time
                  February 06, 2013, 4:32PM
              • When is the MSM going to go in hard and ask some insightful questions about policy to Abbott instead of giving him a free ride? Like it's a given he will be PM? Seriously...what has happened to Australian journalism?

                Commenter
                Neenie
                Date and time
                February 06, 2013, 4:05PM
                • You have to feel sorry for Eddie Obied. His memory has been very hazy lately and it sounds like the Lodge required a turnstile to count the many visitors who just accepted the favour of full service accomodation with no questions or return favours asked. The true believers are leading the way.

                  Commenter
                  enough is enough
                  Location
                  Labor party La La Land
                  Date and time
                  February 06, 2013, 4:15PM
                  • Katharine@3.43pm: Who's the little girl being so shamelessly used as a prop on JG's twitter feed? Did she come with the new glasses?

                    Commenter
                    brian
                    Date and time
                    February 06, 2013, 4:35PM
                    • Hey Katherine, An interesting photo of Peta Credlin. In your opinion, who's Leader of the Opposition? It's definitely looking more and more like Tony's Peta's Puppet.

                      Commenter
                      Long Xuyen
                      Location
                      Viet Nam
                      Date and time
                      February 06, 2013, 4:49PM
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