Category Archives: Scandal

NSW votes.

Well the people of New South Wales have sent a clear message to the out going Labor Government.
The last time I wrote here was just after the Federal Election in November last year and the Federal Labor Party narrowly got into government with the now famous hung parliament.
New South Wales Labor has suffered an overwhelming loss and has lost power.
What will this mean for New South Wales?

Well that is hard to know. The Liberal Party have not given us a lot of information on what the plan for NSW. They certainly have a big job ahead of them to bring NSW back to its previous standing as the “Premier State” and the leading state economy in Australia.
With a predicted majority of 66 seats in the lower house the Liberals will have a lot of power but will they get the same power in the upper house.
As we saw with the Howard Federal Government, such absolute power is a dangerous thing. As Labor have said in their campaign, such great power is like a blank cheque. Lets hope that they don’t get a blank cheque or if they do that they use it wisely.

Kristina Keneally while retaining her seat has stepped down as leader of the Labor party. I guess it is understandable. No one wants to be Opposition Leader after being Premier. So what will this mean for the next Labor leader and who will take on this poisoned chalice. Only time will tell.
I am sure there will be plenty happen in the coming months and hopefully the Liberal Party will step up to the plate and put things right in the state of New South Wales.

Keneally insults everyone and is running out of luck.

Poor Kristina Keneally doesn’t seem to be having much luck lately.
First David Campbell leaves the front bench to deal with personal issues after his secret gay life is exposed and then she looses two more Minsters in one day. What can go wrong next? I know lets just insult the whole of Australia by down playing Barry O’Farrell’s Kokoda trail achievement as something so easy even Miss Australia has done it. Nice work Kristina.

Kristina Keneally made the gibe at Barry O’Farrell saying “Well, so did Miss Australia – so congratulations, Barry.” after he had used his completion of the trail as proof of his personal strength in a media interview.

Clearly Kristina doesn’t fully understand the significance of the Kokoda Trail to Australia. By down playing Barry O’Farrell’s effort she has insulted not only all Australians but the soldiers that that made this trek out of necessity during World War II and people who have completed the Kokoda Trail since then. She has also insulted all Australian women by suggesting that if a women, and more particularly 2007 Miss Australia winner Caroline Pemberton, can complete the trail then I can’t be so hard.

I would suggest that perhaps Kristina needs to do the Kokoda Trail and even though she claims it is something she would like to do when her kids are older I would suggest that the sooner the better. Until then maybe a bit of research about the Kododa Trail and perhaps the broader subject of Australia history would be in order.

Perhaps some research of the people that Barry O’Farrell did the trail with wouldn’t have gone astray either as Caroline Pemberton is an experienced adventure racer and one of his other fellow participants was Liberal Upper House MP Charlie Lynn has completed the trail 59 times, so Barry O’Farrell was not among beginners by any means.

After the shock loss of two Ministers when Ian McDonald and Graham West resigned from their Ministries the Keneally Government was in a state of panic. Not only did it have to fill two more ministries but it will now have to go into damage control again over Ian McDonald’s alleged travel rorts.
The New South Wales Labor Government would seem to have quite a task ahead of them if they are going to have any success in the next state election in March 2011. Kristina Keneally certainly hasn’t made the task any easier and has perhaps shown how out of touch she is with the people who she claims to represent.
I certainly look forward to an interesting election campaign that seems to be developing in New South Wales. I am sure it will provide many interesting points for discussion.

Grubby Politics? and Roads to nowhere.

It seems that the NSW Labor Government can’t get an even break these days. Part of this is their won fault and other parts are, for want of a better word, bad luck.
The latest set back to befall the NSW Government are the David Campbell Affair and the revelation that no major improvements are going to be made to the road system until 2026.
My feeling on the David Campbell affair is that it is a case of grubby politics. I can’t help but feel that this has come out at such an opportune time for the Liberal Opposition and at a target they wanted for such a long time.
The fact that David Campbell is gay does not affect his ability to represent his constituents and carry out his ministerial duties. Perhaps being hidden does damage his credibility a bit but I can understand why he did chose to hide his sexuality. He grew up and would have come to realise his sexuality in less accepting times and effects of passed attitudes would have been heavily imprinted in his mind making it scary to come out in the first place and almost impossible to come out once he had created his life with a heterosexual cloak. You can only imagine how he could have felt all these years.
Anyway moving on. I feel this is mostly a private matter between David Campbell, his wife and his children. It is sure to be a difficult time and I hope they are able to get through it in good shape.
So why do I think it is grubby politics? Well like I said it is mostly a private matter. David Campbell has not broken any laws or parliamentary rules. He has always represented his electorate well and been a good hard working Parliamentarian. Where things get grubby is when I wonder why a reporter was hanging around the front of a gay venue waiting for David Campbell to leave, and who told him he would be there. It seems like a lucky break or the reporter was given information from someone who wanted to bring David Campbell down. I don’t think anyone is about to tell us what the truth is and we will all be left to make our own conclusions. I think some significant conclusions to come from the footage are that David Campbell was sneaking out a back entrance or trying to hide from anyone as he was leaving this building. The NSW Opposition has been after David Campbell for a long time and it just seems too convenient that this happened in way that they not even got any dirt on their hands with the Opposition hardly even making a comment on the matter. Enough of that for now. I am sure those of us intelligent enough to know how politics works will know why this has been revealed in this way at this time.

It has also been revealed that the NSW Government has no plans to make any further significant improvements to the Sates road network until atleast 2026.
This is quite unbelievable. Anyone who travels in Sydney or uses the states other major roads knows that there is an urgent need for a significant upgrade of the road system in NSW. This is another example of the failure of the NSW Labor Government to properly run the State of NSW. The most unfortunate thing in my opinion is that there doesn’t really seem to be any good alternatives on the opposite side of NSW politics.

One thing is for sure. The Labor Government is going to have hard task in the up coming state election and the people of NSW have some hard decisions to make. Keep the current non performing Government or elect a seemingly ineffective Opposition. A tough decision, which way will the people decide?

Turnbull Concedes Rudd Is Not Involved But Attacks Anyway

Malcolm Turnbull has finally conceded attacks on Kevin Rudd cannot be sustained. This has not, however, stopped him from going on the attack.

Of course there was another lively session in Federal Parliament today with calls from both sides of the house for the relevant parties to resign. Despite Malcolm Turnbull’s concession that attacks on Kevin Rudd couldn’t continue in regard to the Utegate affair, he tried a different line of attack. Turnbull’s attacks on Kevin Rudd today centered on a Bennelong car dealer.

The car dealer approach Rudd “at a small business function” that he “attended with the member for Bennelong.”

So what is the point that the Leader of the Opposition is trying to make here. Surely Kevin Rudd is allowed to talk to people at functions he attends and if people ask questions of him surely they are entitled to answers. The purpose of this car dealer approaching Mr Rudd was to ask about the OzCar scheme and whether it was up and running. Surely this was reasonable and attacks of this nature can not be sustained either.

Is this just a tactic by Mr Turnbull to divert attention away from the fake email the he relied so heavily on?

The last week has shown that Malcolm Turnbull lacks the judgment to be the alternative Prime Minister. Not checking the validity of information before launching such a vicious attack and not knowing when move on are pretty basic skills required of any politician. Mr Turnbull needs to move aside as Leader of the Opposition or the Liberal Party needs remove to him to save themselves and get on with the business of opposition and leave these poorly founded attacks behind them.

Wayne Swan has tabled documents which show that he did not give preferential treatment to John Grant. So the subject should be closed.

There clearly has not been any corruption from Kevin Rudd or Wayne Swan and the opposition needs to stop flogging this dead horse. It clearly is not going anywhere.

There is important work to be done in Parliament. The politicians in Canberra need to get on with it and stop their petty bickering before Parliament breaks.

Utegate Email Is A Fake.

Investigation by AFP officers into the email at center of the OzCar affair have tracked its origin to a computer in the Treasury Department.

It has been revealed that the email originated from the Treasury Department and was sent to Treasury official Godwin Grech. Federal Police this morning raided Grech’s home. Grech was interviewed by Police with Police emerging from his home at about 1 pm with three hard cases.

Police have also established the email as a fake.

Police also want to interview a former staffer of Malcolm Turnbull, Paul Lindwall, who is also a former Treasury colleague of Godwin Grech.

A firm link to Malcolm Turnbull has does not seem to have been established at this stage and there are people from both sides of the political spectrum working at Treasury, but it does seem to be getting closer.

During a fiery session in Parliament today The Government focused much of its attack on the email issue with the Opposition calling it a diversion from the issue of Wayne Swan misleading Parliament. While this may be the case it could also be said that the Opposition trying to steer focus to Wayne Swan could be a diversion away from Malcolm Turnbull and the fake email.

With the Opposition still trying to attack Wayne Swan about providing assistance for Ipswich car dealer John Grant it also seems clear that he hasn’t received anything that he wasn’t entitled to. If this is what assistance from Wayne Swan gets you then I don’t think I will be going to him if I need help.

So what happens next?

As far as I see it Kevin Rudd seems pretty much clear, although there will be a bit of mud still to clean off.

Wayne Swan has some explaining to do and does not seem to be completely clear. It will be a tough week for him.

Malcolm Turnbull is also in for a tough week. Although he is not in any real trouble yet things seem to be hotting up and it is yet to be seen what his involvement in the email scandal is, if any at all.

Things are continuing Stay tuned.

Kevin Gives Malcolm An Ultimatum and Swanny Says He Is Not Going Anywhere.

Kevin Rudd has given Malcolm Turnbull and ultimatum to produce the email at the centre of the Oz Car scandal within 24 hours or resign.

Speaking outside a church in Canberra, Mr Rudd said “Mr Turnbull and the Liberals have been boasting for a long time now that they are in possession of this information. Well the time has come to produce this information to the parliament for authentication.

“If when parliament resumes in 24 hours, Mr Turnbull fails to produce this email, this email upon which his entire case against the Government is based, for authentication he has no alternative but to stand in the parliament, apologise, and to resign.”

The Opposition has been looking for a chink in the Labour armour and they obviously thought this was their best chance yet. Unfortunately for them the pivotal evidence that they claimed to have doesn’t seem to exist and they need to produce it now to justify their allegations.

Deputy Prime Minster Julia Gillard told ABC television “Mr Turnbull’s got a very big problem.

“It turns out that there is no such email so Mr Turnbull … has got a pretty big decision to make, he can either produce the email that he’s been carrying on about for days or he can tender his resignation.

“His credibility has been so shot that there will be no other alternative.”

Treasurer Wayne Swan has fended off calls for him to resign saying media reports that his position hangs in the balance and that he should resign over the OzCar affair are “ridiculous” and “absurd”.

Opposition Leader Malcolm Turnbull claims Mr Swan has misled parliament over claims that he did not assist car dealer John Grant. “If you look at the emails that are on the public record, what you can see is Mr Grant didn’t receive any assistance from OzCar or Ford Credit. He didn’t receive any assistance at all,” Mr Swan Said.

Certainly Mr Rudd seems to be in clear air at this stage but Mr Swan would seem to have a bit of work to do yet before he is in the clear. Email records tendered to a Senate inquiry on Friday into the OzCar program showed that Mr Swan was being kept in the loop regarding Mr Grant’s application for finance. Whether any undue influence was applied is yet to be seen.

Shadow Treasurer Joe Hockey however has chosen not to speak on the affair today. He refused to comment on the email or who had seen it.

He did say that Wayne Swan would be hounded by the Opposition on the matter over the next few days. “Wayne Swan this morning dodged a few bullets. Over the next few days he will not be able to avoid answering questions, detailed questions, about his relationship with John Grant and exactly what he did to help John Grant,” Mr Hockey said.

“Over the next few days we will be asking a lot of questions of the Treasurer. We expect a lot of detailed answers.

Clearly it has become an issue to hot to handle except in the sanctuary of parliament.

Stay Tuned.

Could The Oz Car Scandal Mean The End For Kevin Rudd?

Could an attempt to help a mate mean the end for Australia’s Prime Minister Kevin Rudd?

Certainly if he is found to have used his position to help his car dealer friend, John Grant, get finance through the Governments Oz Car scheme it bring the end of his days as Australia’s Prime Mininster.

It has been claimed by the Opposition that Mr Rudd’s office had contacted Godwin Grech, the head of the Government’s $2 billion OZ Car scheme to help for Mr Grant.

Of course Mr Rudd denies this communication ever happened and has claimed that an email allegedly sent by his senior economic adviser Andrew Charlton to Mr Grech is an elaborate fraud. After an investigation by Mr Rudd’s office they have been unable to find any record of this email originating from his office.

Kevin Rudd has now called for an Auditor Generals enquiry into the affair.

If it is found that any influence did come from Mr Rudd’s office then he surely would have no other choice but to resign.
Mr Rudd has set a high standard of conduct for his Government colleagues and to fail to live up to this standard would surely be unforgivable.

If it is found that the email is a fraud then who knows who’s head will roll? If this is found to be a fraud then not only could there be the political fallout from such a scandal but also the possibility of criminal action as the Australian Federal Police have also started investigations into the affair.

Stay posted for updates on this. It could get very interesting.

Could Pelosi Be The Chink In Obama’s Armour?

U.S. President Barack Obama has always maintained a nice clean down to earth image. He appears to be very approachable and friendly. As far as we know hasn’t bothered any White House interns, yet, and he is the dedicated family man. How could anybody find anything wrong with him. Ok maybe people will criticise his political leanings but these are just their opinions of his ideology and not a real criticism of the person.

Then you have Nancy Pelosi, the Democratic speaker of the House of Representatives, the most powerful woman in Washington. It is Pelosi who the Republicans seem to be going after now.
With her perfectly coifed hair, perfectly tailored suits and her rich banker husband she is exactly the type of out of touch ‘Limousine Liberal’ that the Democrats have been looking for. She is also not so clean when it comes to scandal. Pelosi is one of a handful lawmakers who was briefed by the Central Intelligence Agency in 2002 on “waterboarding” and other extreme interrogation tactics used against prisoners in the Bush era. She now accuses the agency of lying to her and hiding what it was doing.
Republicans have attacked Pelosi for making unsubstantiated and damaging accusations against a crucial national security agency.
The man who once had her job, former Republican speaker Newt Gingrich, says Pelosi is lying in a way that is “despicable, dishonest and vicious.”
Now that Obama has ordered that such methods be stopped Republicans are asking why other Democrats who could have stopped these tactics, did nothing.
This is where Pelosi becomes the chink in Obama’s armour. The House of Representatives is the place where taxes and spending starts. So almost every one of Obama’s plans will have to pass through Pelosi.
Obama is still remarkably popular and most of the country hopes that he’ll succeed in rebuilding the economy and ending the war in Iraq.
The President would seem to be immune from easy attacks so the opposition needs someone who isn’t. In steps Pelosi. As far as targets go she is the one. She has the out of touch image and the back door scandal to be the weak Democrat link the the Republicans are looking for.

The British MP’s Expenses Mess Gets Messier.

British MP’s have had a bad time lately with revelations that some of them have been rorting their expenses in private spending.
The latest of the MP’s to be caught up is Conservative MP Sir Peter Viggers, who has been forced to announce his resignation Thursday over the STG1,600 ($3,253) duck island installed in his estates pond.

MP Viggers, who has been MP for Gosport on the southern English coast since 1974, was ordered by Conservative Party chief David Cameron to quit or be fired after the revelation.
Other MP’s caught up in this scandal include Tory MP Andrew MacKay with his wife Julie Kirkbride also facing calls to quit as an MP, Labour MP Eric Joyce, Welsh MPs Hywel Williams, Elfyn Llwyd and Adam Price who used expenses to research a possible impeachment of Tony Blair, Senior Liberal Democrat MP Malcolm Bruce, Conservative MP Derek Conway are just a few to be named.
And the scandal just gets messier as it is revealed that the former SAS soldier who blew the whistle, John Wick, has left a trail of bad debts from a succession of failed businesses.
Mr Wick has reportedly left a string of 16 collapsed businesses behind him, with debts totalling more than £7million. His failed business ventures are said to have left former military comrades tens of thousands of pounds out of pocket.
I guess the question has to be asked have his action really been done out of a public duty or has it just been a greedy move to sell his big story to the media.
I don’t think this story has finished here so I would keep my eye out for more news on this one.

Hot Liberal Chicks.

What a scandal it as for Australian politics it as when a blog site posted sexy pictures of women from the Australian Liberal Party in an effort to recruit more young men to join the party.

In a media frenzy the site was exposed as terribly sexist and shameful. However the websites author, Washington-based blogger and member of the Ashfield branch of the Young Liberals Tim Andrews wrote “To put it simply, we have all the hot girls”.

Amongst the frenzied reaction to the blog were comments from the likes of the former federal sex discrimination commissioner and NSW Liberal MP Pru Goward “I’m disappointed that he’s misjudged the importance of a political party like ours, which for so long has defended the dignity of men and women,” she said. “We do need to recruit young people . . . and I commend Tim for having a go, but I think that we have to remember that people join political parties because of the facts, not the figures.”
It is good to see that the Liberals not only have the pretty women but the witty ones as well.
NSW Liberal leader Barry O’Farrell was not so impressed, he said “I find it a disappointing and unacceptable posting,” he said. “I am offended by the some of the blog responses.”
Mr Andrews based his blog idea on conservative commentator P.J. O’Rourke’s “babe-theory”, which suggests if you have attractive women in a party, there is an exponential rise in the number of men wanting to join.
I am sure it is a commendable theory but is this really the motive you want for people joining a political party.
Australian Labor Leader Prime Minister Kevin Rudd refused to be drawn on the quality of women in the Labor Party saying only that they had people with “qualities of their own”.
While I am sure the site was meant as a bit of fun, it is a shame that the Australian political scene can be distracted by such a trivial matter when there are so many more important issues in these times.
Tim Andrews has taken the post down, but has promised that a revised version will be published very soon. I am sure we can’t wait for that.