The Global Mail has ceased operations.
MEDIA

Judge, There’s a Grub In My Scoop

The irrepressible reporter Steve Lewis has been bounding around the Canberra press gallery for a couple of decades. He’s been with the The Australian Financial Review, The Australian and, these days, is still in the News Ltd stable writing on national politics for a spread of Murdoch’s local papers.

Lewis is no hard-drinking, hell-raising, out-all-night hack. He’s a family guy, an industrious, diligent reporter, a founding member of the Press Gallery’s singing group, the House Howlers. It was Lewis who mostly conceived the Press Gallery’s now fabled Midwinter Ball, which has raised thousands for charities. He’s an enthusiast for the old rule bashed into newspaper cadets (remember them?): get it first and get it right.

Print journalists achieve longevity in Canberra either because their commentary and analysis is good enough to attract a decent following, they’re standout writers, or because they get scoops. Lewis is a scoops man, in the business of getting exclusives where others can’t or won’t look. They may not be all memorable but they’re frequent.

It’s the hardest of all career platforms to maintain within the press gallery; scoops take more shoe leather, cold calling and shoulder-rubbing time than does an incisive piece of commentary or a gilded piece of writing. Fine writers and insightful commentators have the protective bulwark of reputation and following. For scoop-getters, they’re as good as their last; when the scoops stop, so does the career. Lewis was a journalist in need of the next scoop.

And that’s how Steve Lewis came to be the journalist who broke the whole reeking Peter Slipper saga, abetted by the political insiders who wanted Slipper out of the Speaker’s Office and out of Parliament.

<p>Mike Bowers/The Global Mail</p>

Mike Bowers/The Global Mail

The plan all along? Sexual harassment charges against Peter Slipper were thrown out on December 12, but not before the former Speaker resigned in disgrace.

Justice Steven Rares showed touching empathy — for a man of the bench — for the lot of a parliamentary scoop-seeker such as Lewis, when he handed down his 200-paragraph judgment on Wednesday that tossed out the sexual harassment allegations against Slipper. They were sensationally reported by Lewis in News Ltd papers.

While His Honour excoriated Slipper’s former staffer James Ashby for conspiring for his own ends to ruin Slipper’s career by getting his allegations that Slipper had sexually harassed him into the media — under the protection of a Court action — the judge looked more favourably upon Lewis’s role in the affair.

Justice Rares finds Lewis enthusiastically followed up the information Ashby gave him but adds that the reporter could not be said to have shared Ashby’s interests to further his own career prospects with Mr. Slipper’s enemies, the Queensland Liberal-National Coalition. Nor could it be said that Lewis was trying to aid the return to national politics of the former Howard government minister Mal Brough, who was eyeing off Slipper’s seat.

Rather, Justice Rares hit the nail squarely, if rather too bluntly for some squeamish Canberra journos, writing: “It is more likely Mr Lewis was focused on obtaining good copy for stories to sell newspapers.”

The judge goes on to acknowledge that the reporter was probably not blind to the motivations of Ashby or Mal Brough (a confidant of Ashby’s) and doubtless wanted to keep encouraging Ashby and Brough to provide new material for more stories.

The judge even ventures that any hack worth his salt would have done what Steve Lewis did: “Once presented with sources such as Mr Ashby and Ms Doane (Ashby’s colleague in Slipper’s office) together with the prospect of a story such as in the originating application, it is difficult to think that any journalist would have acted differently to Mr Lewis in pursuing and publishing that story.”

“It is more likely Mr Lewis was focused on obtaining good copy for stories to sell newspapers.”

Indeed, Lewis was able to write a cracker exclusive when he broke the story back in April, opening in the Daily Telegraph with the choice paragraphs:

“SPEAKER Peter Slipper is facing explosive allegations he sexually harassed a young male adviser and misused taxpayer-funded Cabcharge dockets in a major new crisis for the Gillard Government.

“The man who holds the highest parliamentary office in Australia is accused in court documents by James Ashby of making ‘unwelcome sexual advances’ and ‘unwelcome sexual comments’,” Lewis wrote.

So is the judge right? Do Steve Lewis and his employer, News Ltd, emerge with clean hands from this sordid business? Certainly the judge did not believe all that Lewis said about his own gathering of material for his articles. Specifically he rejected Lewis’s explanation for a now well-publicised text message exchange between Lewis and Ashby after the pair met in a Sunshine Coast café to discuss Ashby’s allegations against Slipper.

This was two weeks before Lewis published. Lewis had travelled from Canberra for the meeting:

Lewis: “Ta Abt to hop on plane Will call later We will get him!!”

Mr Ashby: “Great Thanks for coming up”.

Mr Lewis: “I am here to help!!!”

The judge rejected Lewis’s claim that he had been referring to a hire-car driver who had information about Slipper in his ‘we will get him’ text to Ashby. Further, Lewis’s second text implied the reporter was collaborating with Ashby to damage Slipper.

The judge wrote: “I am not satisfied that Mr Lewis was texting Mr Ashby, while he was boarding a plane, about “getting” a driver. It is difficult to see why Mr Lewis would use the words “get him” rather than “find him” if he was talking of locating a driver. Moreover, Mr Lewis’s next comment: “I am here to help!!!”, in response to Mr Ashby’s thanks for his visit, again suggests collaboration with Mr Ashby and Ms Doane in damaging Mr Slipper. I find that on 4 April 2012, Mr Lewis referred to Mr Slipper when he wrote: “We will get him!!”.

If, as the judge finds, the whole of the Slipper affair was a calculated effort by James Ashby to politically damage Peter Slipper by abusing the court process, then some might say that Steve Lewis and News Ltd were remiss for going along with it by relying on the protection of court filings for their stories; that indeed Lewis should have seen through Ashby’s motivations from the outset.

But that would be naïve. More likely was that Lewis was well aware of Ashby’s motivations and those of other players, such as Mal Brough. Sources have all sorts of motivations for giving up information. What matters to the reporter is whether the material offered is newsworthy, factually correct and can be defended once published. The facts of the various sexually charged exchanges between Slipper and Ashby aren’t in question (what can be drawn from this most certainly is). And Lewis had waited to publish with the legal cover that came once Ashby had commenced his court action.

News Ltd paid Ashby’s hotel accommodation in Sydney while Lewis was researching his story. Again, that’s defensible. Any prudent news organisation might well have done the same.

What matters to the reporter is whether the material offered is newsworthy, factually correct and can be defended once published.

What we didn’t get from News Ltd and Steve Lewis was anything like the full story. All Lewis reported was that the Speaker was being accused of sexually harassing a staffer.

The bigger story is tightly told in one paragraph — number 138 — in Justice Steven Rares’ judgment: “I am also satisfied that Mr Ashby and Ms Doane by about 29 March 2012 were in a combination with Mr Brough to cause Mr Slipper as much political and public damage as they could inflict on him. They believed and hoped that Mr Lewis would publish unfavourable stories about Mr Slipper concerning whatever they could help Mr Lewis find in relation to Mr Slipper’s use of his travel entitlements in the areas of Mr Lewis’s curiosity. That is why each of Mr Ashby, Ms Doane and Mr Brough were anxious to provide Mr Lewis with the diary entries he sought. It is not clear whether Mr Brough had passed on to Mr Lewis Mr Ashby’s foreshadowed complaint of sexual harassment in late March 2012. They also believed that Mr Lewis, and the media generally, would report on any legal proceeding against Mr Slipper in which Mr Ashby alleged sexual harassment. At this time, Mr Ashby and Ms Doane saw Mr Brough as their means of obtaining favour from the LNP in seeking new employment. It was obvious that once what Mr Ashby was then planning became public, he and Ms Doane could no longer work as members of Mr Slipper’s personal staff. The relationship of trust and confidence (if it still subsisted) between Mr Slipper and the two staff members would have been destroyed by their acts of calculated disloyalty.”

We can thank Justice Rares for a judgment that took us inside the shrouded political backrooms of in Canberra and Queensland, exposing the real grubby self-interest of those who made the allegations against Peter Slipper.

And we thank Steve Lewis. He didn’t get the real story. But without Lewis it would never have been told.

35 comments on this story
by phil

Bernard,

Good story.

How about some deeper investigation further up the chain?

What actual connections exist between the Coalition and News Limited and other main stream media outlets? Is there explicit coordination between at high levels?

There seems to have been collaboration between News Ltd and ACA on the Craig Thompson prostitute story. What connection exists between channel 9 or its owners and News Limited and its major shareholders?

Who are the figures at the top of these organisations and what are the issues motivating them to conduct such operations to bring down a democratically elected government.
How about an analysis of the potency of tabloid papers such as the Herald Sun and The Daily Telegraph and how they are used so effectively by the elite to influence what such a large proportion of the think about.

What are the motivations for the ABC following the lead of the News Ltd papers so closely and giving legitimacy to rubbish like 'Newspoll', are they afraid of retribution from News Ltd or is management slowly moving it right?

I’m still yet to see a no holds barred analysis of the main stream media environment in this country which includes looking at the money behind these organisations, the politics of these people, the connections, the dumbing down, the use of tabloids, the use of sport to distract and draw people to news mediums, the influence of advertisers. Perhaps The Global Mail has the balls?

I would suggest that The Global Mail will get more bang for its buck (and more hits) by focusing more on issues in Australia since I can already go to plenty of other sites for stories about foreign lands, we desperately need as much quality journalism in this country about our country as possible, and it needs to happen soon, or else I can see us looking a lot like the US in 10 years time.

Thanks.

December 13, 2012 @ 7:41pm
by Andrew Reilly

Why does the RSS feed for this story finish with applause for Peter Hartcher, who is not mentioned in the article itself?

December 13, 2012 @ 9:59pm
by Darwin Dingbat

Does Steve Lewis and News Ltd emerge with clean hands?

The fact that they utterly failed to follow the equally compelling, and according to Justice Rares at least, true story of seeking to influence Australian politics in an underhand, not to mention disgraceful fashion would suggest that they failed spectacularly in their role as journalists and informers of the public.

The fact that the newspapers and media that covered this story so voluminously and prominently have all of a sudden gone all shy when the judgement revealed that they were so widely off the mark suggests to me that much of the media had its own agenda all along.

December 13, 2012 @ 11:59pm
by Joe Morrison

As a former (state) public servant, it has always bothered me that Ashby's supporters did not simply redirect him to his own department's Sexual Harassment procedures. This surely has to be an essential first step and a very confidential step with the best interests of all concerned taken into consideration. By stepping immediately into the legal and public arenas, Ashby's real motivations were pretty clear from the outset.

It has also astounded me that even after the court's determination, that some commentators are still repeating the fiction that Slipper called Sophie Mirabella a "botch". He did not. That was Ashby himself. Slipper merely repeated the descriptor whilst replying to Ashby's remark.

From start to finish, a sad example of the manipulation of the media at the expense of truth an fair process.

December 14, 2012 @ 9:23am
by TGM

Hi Andrew,

The RSS feed was pulling some text in from an earlier draft of the story that was never published. We've amended it now.

Thank you for pointing that out.

December 14, 2012 @ 11:43am
by John

Phil,

The ABC's move to the right isn't slow, nor is it nuanced.

December 14, 2012 @ 1:02pm
by steve

@ Joe Morrison (14 Dec, 9.23am)

Why would you be "bothered" by Ashby's failure to seek redress through sexual harassment procedures Joe. Do you not yet see that it had nothing to do with sexual harassment!

December 15, 2012 @ 8:27am
by Max

I'd definitely agree with Phil that The Global Mail could cover itself with glory by stepping into the echoing emptiness of decent journalism in and about this country and its politics which has been created by the ABC, News Ltd and Fairfax.

I'd also have to say, in contradiction of Joe, that the Ashby affair and its results have arisen not because of manipulation of the media but manipulation by the media. Without Lewis and his ilk, there would not have been an Ashby affair with its sad results for Peter Slipper, a flawed man like most of us, but no less innocent for that.

December 15, 2012 @ 8:30am
by Margo Kingston

Gutsy, Bernie. What did you think of how the Tele reported the judgement, guven how iit reported the scoop?

December 15, 2012 @ 9:02am
by peter mott

Thanks Bernard,

Puzzled by this view of what Steve Lewis was doing. Surely there is a fine line where he becomes part of the story that he is seeking to cover? At the very least it appears he lost sight of the bigger story conveyed so clearly in your article and the judgement.

December 15, 2012 @ 9:06am
by Norman

A good article. Insightful and well written However, Justice Rares is not infallible. He has had his judgments overturned before. The Full Bench of the Federal Court upheld his decision that permitted Optus to effectively steal live TV coverage of AFL and NRL games and feed it to Optus mobile phone customers, after only a few seconds delay. James Ashby worked and lived in political circles. In my opinion it was completely understandable that he sought Mal Brough's advice, without it amounting to a conspiracy. If I recall, perhaps incorrectly, Brough sensed a problem and made sure his wife was present at his advice sessions for Ashby. It wasn't smart of Brough, though. he lid himself open to perceptions (that's all) of wrongdoing and we have long been told that perceptions are everything in politics. Overall, though, wait for the appeal ...

December 15, 2012 @ 9:35am
by Judy

We all desperately need the media to do some extensive self-examination. Can it think clearly about what it might regard as 'news'? Why was the obvious set-up by Ashby et al of Slipper, with all the between -the-lines implication of corrupt politics and self-interest, not as much a 'news' story as the actual accusations against the Speaker? Surely, surely, the judge's decision could have been foreseen? And why did our revered commentators take so long to recognise the PM's mysoginy speech as something more than a political ploy? Yes, of course the worst offenders come out of the Right-wing media, but the rest folow suit. To not even posit the alternative view - even when it is self-evident - is not just slack, not just shockingly lazy, but goes counter to the role the media must play in our society if we want to call ourselves a working democracy.

December 15, 2012 @ 10:00am
by Anne Hollingshead

The ABC has failed to adequately report the verdict of the court nor has it taken note of this in reporting on subsequent commentary and questioning of the players. The judge clearly stated that it was a conspiracy yet Abbot gets away unchallenged in saying it was not a conspiracy

December 15, 2012 @ 10:18am
by Numbat

If I were Peter Slipper I'd be suing for libel. Embarrass them and cost them money - that's how you change behaviour. Tony Abbott took the opportunity to demonstrate integrity, and has instead endorsed Mal Brough's behaviour. Would you buy a used car from this man? Re the ABC, we should recognise their achievements as well as their shortcomings. Who else would have given us the brilliant Q&A, Hamster Wheel and Gruen Transfer?

December 15, 2012 @ 10:33am
by Brian

It's one thing to get a juicy scoop from a source, it's another to skew the story to fit the source's agenda. Lewis effectively made Ashby's "Get Slipper" agenda his own.
Lewis failed to tell readers the whole story, as it was known to him, which is a grievous ethical failure. By selectively reporting only on the "explosive sexual harassment claims" without alerting readers that the claims were part of a wider plot to bring down Slipper (which he knew about), Lewis did journalism a great disservice.
The problem with Lewis' coverage, and that of News Limited more generally, is that it tries to pick winners and then ignores or fudges facts to suit the pre-plotted course.

December 15, 2012 @ 10:48am
by Markie

Bernard, VIP (very interesting piece).
I see a fine line between the reporting of 'exclusive' stories and colouring reality.
Either you're breaking news or you're writing opinion. It's very tempting, I'm sure, to pad out exclusives with innuendo and supposition - even if it means passing judgements in the process.
Yes, reporters have to 'cosy up' to sources to get their story but it shouldn't mean ending up in the sources pocket - the reader is left with the taint of biased reporting.
This was certainly the case with Mark Baker's AWU 'exclusives' in the Fairfax press over the last months. The reader is left with nagging doubt about the motive of the writing. It seems, to this reader, that there was not an objective sentence in most of his reports on this matter.
Reading between the lines you have to ask yourself; what's the agenda here?
The same applies, in my opinion, to what I've seen of Steve Lewis' work…

December 15, 2012 @ 11:46am
by Bill Birnbauer

Good story Bernard. One thing jarred and that's Justice Rare's assertion that Lewis was motivated by a desire to sell newspapers. In my view, this reflects a fundamental and popular misunderstanding of the culture of journalism. I've never known a serious journalist to be motivated by this. More so, it's a combination of the hunt, the sniff, ego, the scoop, chase for truth/ justice, bagging a scalp, and flogging the opposition that makes journalists somewhat different to the public perception.

December 15, 2012 @ 12:36pm
by PrayforTruth

I also find it rather infuriating that the MSM continually manipulates a story for thier own political agendas, rather than giving 'all the facts of the matter, letting readers decide'. They wonder why large amounts of the public are leaving the MSM to source their news/information, as they are sick of the alteria motives (whether blatantly obvious, or deceptively hidden). I too refuse the source anything from the Murdock Empire or Fairfax Media, as the news within the news article frustrates the hell out of me.
The thoughts that we are possibly moving towards a US-style media landscape is rather belatedly reported. I feel we are ALREADY at this stage. The problem is that other media organisations either waits for the MSM to report to prevent victimisation from them if a different slant on the story is portrayed, OR fail to report on the story whatsoever.
The ABC/SBS independant news groups need to step up even more now, however, I feel Mark Scott is worried about the backlash from his Liberal collegues if he does. Perhaps it's a kind of sensoring-by-proxy.
A great piece mind you and YES the Global Mail too can be that shining beacon of Truth in what appears to be a political cesspool we are currently in, thanks to Mr Abbott and Co.

December 15, 2012 @ 2:26pm
by Steve Carey

The whole issue of the "disgusting" emails is a classic case of lack of context. How many of us particularly the moralising politicians, would be amenable to our private emails being aired? What is the context of "normal' behavior in the online world? Is Slipper a disgusting deviate or an all too familiar voice in a blokey and sexist milieu? These hyperventilating and hypocritical journalists know only too well that his attitudes are commonplace. Same with Craig Thompson. How many well paid middle ranking executives would agree to their credit cards being forensically examined and expose their peccadilloes and rorts. His behavior is all too typical of many execs and is an example of how the morality of business now thoroughly pervades the Union movement. If Lewis had some spine he would write a front page story on the Slipper judgement for the Terrorgraph without the despicable rats whiskers.

December 15, 2012 @ 3:33pm
by Trevor Harrison

The role of Lewis should be seen in the larger longer-term context of News' consistent determination to undermine and displace the Gillard Government in favour of their LNP running mates. The judge was never going to mention that specific context...it's 'opinion' albeit one based endlessly in evidence.

December 15, 2012 @ 3:36pm
by Lee

Right on Phil, and Joe, no media investigation into the grubby details that led to this disgraceful episode. Nor will there be.

The object was achieved however, the government was damaged, Peter Slipper's political career has been destroyed, probably much of his personal life and any other LNP dissident has been well and truly warned of the consequences of not towing the LNP line. All on behalf of "those who wish to serve us".

Very vicious indeed.

December 15, 2012 @ 4:02pm
by Steve

It's more than obvious that Lewis had an agenda here. This is not the role of a journalist, they are supposed to report the news not make the news to suit an agenda. He got off lightly and would be counting his lucky stars right now along with the extra dollars in his wallet courtesy of a very grateful Uncle Rupert.

December 15, 2012 @ 4:50pm
by Patriciawa

<b>We Want Our Speaker Back!</b>

Mal Brough ambitious office seeker,
James Ashby mercenary leaker,
Though their case could not be weaker
Still brought down a first rate speaker.

How could that have come to pass?
Remember Slipper kicking ass?
And doing it with gravitas!
In Oz speak that means ‘bit o’ class.’

It wasn’t just the way he dressed
In long black gown and fancy vest.
What had watchers most impressed
Was the end of uproar and unrest.

The Chamber filled no more with cries
Of outraged members screaming, “Lies!”
In other simple ways and wise
He brought calm; fewer lows, more highs.

Prissie Pyne, censured, had to use
‘Time Out’ to find the Members’ loos,
Fearing the Speaker might refuse
To let him rise to make more POOs.

He cut time-wasteful SSO’s
Used by Abbott against his foes.
Will there be many more of those?
If Slipper’s gone for good, who knows?

His talent is too good to miss!
Pollies! Make friends, shake hands, or kiss!
One thing you must agree is this -
Order in the House with Pete was bliss!

http://polliepomes.wordpress.com/2012/12/14/we-want-our-speaker-back

December 15, 2012 @ 6:32pm
by Pablo

Fair enough BL, but why didn't he frame the story as a conspiracy to defame Slipper if he was aware of the motivations. It shows his bias.

December 15, 2012 @ 7:14pm
by Joe Morrison

Re: Steve Today, December 15, 2012 @ 8:27am

Steve, I'm not disagreeing with you. Whatever it was really about, if Ashby chose to label it sexual harassment, he should have been strongly advised to use the established public service process as his first option. Doing so would have provided a confidential environment for both of the individuals concerned. Having chosen not to take that course of action, he should have been sent away from court on day one.

Justice Rares got there in the end but Peter Slipper's privacy has been invaded for the rest of his life and there's no way to properly compensate him for that.

December 15, 2012 @ 7:37pm
by denise

how do we get this story out to people who have no computer or may have one but no knowledge of on line press.

lets hope that the jouranlists on this site and others go on radio on tv every oportunity you can find our democracy is counting on you

i do like you new format its great and easy to read

December 15, 2012 @ 8:30pm
by Steve

@ Joe Morrrison (15 Dec @ 8.27am)

"Whatever it was really about" ..... as the good Judge held, it was really about slandering Slipper in an attempt to weaken the government.

The Judge commented WTTE that in the many emails contemporaneous with the alleged harassment, Ashby made no reference at all to any harassment to any of his friends/associates.

Plainly he didn't seek the support of available workplace remedies because at the time he (later) alleged that harassment was occurring his own notes make no mention of it. There was no harassment .... it was created later as a vehicle to pursue crass political outcomes.

December 15, 2012 @ 8:44pm
by John Fraser

Up here in Queensland things haven't changed with the Murdoch "only paper in town" devoting the first 7 pages to a possible murder that has not even advanced to the committal stage let alone trial.
Shades of the Slipper "trial" by coalition & online Abbotters.
I'm beginning to think that even though there would be a hell of a lot of interest into who will be paying the Ashby costs ( Harmers did it pro bono but there were Barristers and PR , and not forgetting he has to pay Slippers considerable costs) that story will disappear down the same sewer that Abbotts replies to the Electoral Commission, in relation to the slush fund set up to fight Pauline Hanson, appear to have gone.
The one who appears, at the present time, to have suffered little no damage is M. Brough .... unbelievable !

December 15, 2012 @ 9:27pm
by rob

So to try to overturn or damage a government using underhanded means, isn't that Sediton?

Isn't that the real story here? A judge finds (so its not just speculation) people were conspiring to use the courts to damage or remove elected representatives and change the balance of power of the Government of Australia and its not front page news??

I don't usually think like this but how big is this conspiracy?

December 16, 2012 @ 11:17am
by Terence

What is slightly disturbing is that, after the Federal court exposed this conspiracy, Lewis and the News Ltd tabloids completely dropped this story after having devoted so much in the way of energy and significant resources in the original revelations. With respect to Steve Lewis, it seems that he lost objectivity in original this story which has now prevented him from giving some analysis to court findings.

December 16, 2012 @ 11:48am
by vincent

Interesting comment about the Queensland press situation with Murdoch the only paper in town.
I actually think Murdoch is the most dangerous person on the planet as he has far too much power in the media world wide. His conservative representatives feed us a diet of political bias mixed with junk news and celebrity crap every day. It is a real shame most other news sources seem to be going broke as they have fallen under the wheels of the Murdoch "entertainment" juggernaught.
More power to the gllobal mail and independent commentary.

December 17, 2012 @ 9:16am
by William Telfson

"Isn't that the real story here? A judge finds (so its not just speculation) people were conspiring to use the courts to damage or remove elected representatives and change the balance of power of the Government of Australia and its not front page news??"

It's only front page news when it damages the Government. Anything else is buried somewhere on page 17. That's the reality of the mainstream media in Australia at this point in time.

December 17, 2012 @ 12:43pm
Show previous 32 comments
by my say

how low will the coalition sink to win power,they have ruined the reputation of mr slipper,just to bring down a minority government,and the msm who reported page after page of the sexual harrasement case against him are all very quiet,they must be too busy washing the egg off their face;s thank god we have your site, IA ,and crikey ,to keep us informed, otherwise it would be dead and berried,keep up the good work

December 17, 2012 @ 2:03pm
by Susan Thorman

I quite agree with William's observation that the real story in the Slipper affair is conspiracy to bring down the government by knowingly bringing false claims against Slipper to have him removed from office without fair or due process. The use of the courts to besmirch a person's reputation is surely a step too far. This opposition is the most ruthless and unethical of all time and the mainstream media don't even seem to notice! Thank you Global Mail for saving my sanity in these "interesting" times.

December 17, 2012 @ 10:02pm
by W Stuart McCann

Despite the outcome of this last election, I'm afraid that the behavior of the government when in opposition, prejudiced me against them, for all time. The continuing refusal to be "open and transparent" when in government, The refusal to act upon the Gonski report, perhaps the best gathering of educational expertise ever assembled, is not only spiteful but downright stupid! The appointment of two liberal hacks to replace them, proves my point The revelation of a Liberal member of some twenty three years hiring his wife to work for him, without appearing in his office, is prima face evidence of a likely scam, Dare I mention the travel scams requiring the return of over enthusiastic claims by members? One could be forgiven for thinking our parliament is little short of a den of corruption! With or without the Slipper fiasco!

January 18, 2014 @ 11:41am
CLOSE
Type a keyword to search for a story or journalist

Journalists

Stories