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Federal Politics 2013-

Aug 21, 2014

BludgerTrack: 51.6-48.4 to Labor

Another placid week for the BludgerTrack poll aggregate, suggesting a new equilibrium has been struck between the government's budget disaster and MH17 recovery.

The only national poll this week was the regular weekly Essential Research, which is joined in the BludgerTrack poll aggregate by Galaxy’s result from Queensland. That adds up to no change whatsoever on two-party preferred, but the Greens are up on the primary vote at Labor’s expense. There’s some shifting of the deckchairs on the seat projection, with Labor down one in New South Wales and Victoria and up one in Queensland and Western Australia, but it cancels out on the total score. Nothing new this week for leadership ratings, which serves as a sad reminder that in the past we would have expected Nielsen to come due this week.

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[ The appellant claimed (in the absence of the jury) that he had heard Mr Terracini have a verbal altercation with a person in the Courtroom shortly before the commencement of proceedings. He claimed that he heard Mr Terracini say ‘Don’t you stare at me like that you flea’. It would seem that this assertion was made by the appellant in the absence of counsel after Mr Terracini had informed the Court that all instructions had been terminated, although the transcript does not record the withdrawal of counsel.]

Anyone who complains that the silks don’t earn their money has not sat in a courtroom 😉

Strong UnionsStrongCountry
Strong UnionsStrongCountry

Under the Abbott Government changes to university degrees.

If you earn $40,000 a year you will end repaying $105,000. This is very likely for women who leave the workforce to raise a family.

If you earn $75,000 a year your degree will cost $87,000


ICAC revenge?

[The New South Wales Central Coast is set to become the first region in Australia to experience a roll-out of the Federal Government’s fast broadband network using fibre-to-the-node technology.

The Communications Minister, Malcolm Turnbull has announced the NBN’s existing pilot project at Umina will now be expanded to 54-thousand homes and businesses in surrounding suburbs, including Saratoga, Killcare and Kincumber over the next 12 months.]

Strong UnionsStrongCountry
Strong UnionsStrongCountry

The threat from Islam will only be controlled when the Islamic nations of this world choose to end it. West cannot.

While Abbott carries on about the threat from the Middle East, more Brits are now fighting as Jihadists than there are Muslims in the British Army.

Perhaps we should fear Abbott’s birth place more than the Middle East

comment image



Nobody forthcoming in any sensible way.



Jack Waterford sums up my feelings.

[Jack Waterford, editor at large for the Canberra Times, who has closely followed the case since the murder, told Guardian Australia there was a missed opportunity in the inquiry earlier this year for police to reopen the investigation as a cold case.

“Police chose not to do it. What that means is that the police case and prosecution cases, such as it is, is 19 years old,” said Waterford.

In the 19 years since Eastman was convicted, some of the evidence has been thoroughly discredited and witnesses from the trial have died.

“I’ve never asserted positively that Eastman is innocent, but I’ve always been disturbed about two things,” said Waterford.

“First of all whether whether he really is guilty, because there’s some nagging doubts about that, and secondly whether he was proved to be guilty, and in my opinion he was not.”

Waterford said the trial was a “travesty, actuated by considerable bias, but also aggravated by what you might call police and prosecution tunnel vision – they fixed on Eastman very early and then engaged on a search to find evidence that tended to prove his guilt”.

“I’m not saying they framed him or set him up or anything like that,” he said, “but it leads to a psychological situation where you tend to dismiss anything that doesn’t confirm your prejudice.”

“This was not a very good or very competent, though it was a very expensive, investigation.”]


Spy chief will continue to be allowed to spy on others, by being reappointed for another 5 years:

“The foreign minister, Julie Bishop, said Warner has served with distinction and professionalism in the role.”



Retweeted by Stephen Koukoulas

“What is the point of economic policy if not to build more inclusive, more harmonious societies” – Angel Gurría


Winchester was playing a dangerous game with Operation Seville. Allowing criminals to grow marijuana at Bungendore in an attempt to infiltrate the “mafia” was always going to end in strife.


Retweeted by Richard Chirgwin
Tarah Welsh ‏@Tarahwelsh 6m

Filming #tubestrike outside station (public property) and @TfLOfficial staff have called the police on us!!


[The obvious fact that Eastman is a is a “difficult” personality does not make him guilty of murder.]

Such stupidity is certainly worthy of jail but perhaps 10 years rather than 20 – leaving aside the question of the actual murder.


[I wonder if perhaps we need to legislate some clear statutory provisions, such that a newspaper would be subject to damages if they published scuttlebut needlessly. For example publishing details about sexual liaisons (legal) of politicians (and other celebrities) would incur damages if found to be unrelated to the public interest.]

Why should the famous receive protections not available to the rest of us? Why not a general tort of privacy?



Of course. Erratic and disruptive behaviour in front of a jury to the extent of not being able to be present at your own trial is unhelpful



The obvious fact that Eastman is a is a “difficult” personality does not make him guilty of murder.


[It’s an offer you can’t refuse: rustic abodes in a picturesque hilltop village on the island of Sicily, once home to Italian peasants and their donkeys, are up for sale for just one euro.

Hewn into the Madonie mountains and dotted throughout the town of Gangi, the houses were left empty after their owners emigrated in the 1920s.]

Very long one. How Eastman was legally (un)represented at his murder trial: [Before proceeding to a consideration of the grounds of appeal it is necessary to say something about the appellant’s legal representation during the course of the trial. It would not be an exaggeration to describe it as chaotic. On the first day of the trial, 2 May 1995, Mr Williams QC appeared but only to announce that his instructions and those of his junior and his instructing solicitors had been withdrawn. The appellant sought an adjournment of the trial because he was unrepresented, saying that if the adjournment was not granted he would not take part in the proceedings. The appellant informed his Honour of his reasons for withdrawing those instructions. He said that police intimidation had been ‘condoned’ by the Court; he claimed that the Court had refused to take contempt proceedings at his request against certain police officers and he claimed that Mr Williams had refused to conduct the defence in accordance with his instructions. The application for an adjournment was refused and the matter proceeded. On 15 May 1995, the fifth day of the trial, Mr Williams QC appeared, informing the Court that he had, once again, been instructed to act on behalf of the appellant. He unsuccessfully sought an adjournment of the trial and a permanent stay of the proceedings. On the next day, shortly after the jury had been empanelled, Mr Williams’ instructions were again terminated and the appellant was, once more, without legal representation. On 18 May 1995, the eighth day of the trial, Mr O’Donnell announced his appearance for the appellant but on 22 May (which was the next day of the trial), he advised the Court that he had withdrawn from the case. The appellant, however, made it clear that he had terminated Mr O’Donnell’s instructions because he had allegedly walked out of a conference. On 22 May, Mr Peter Baird appeared for the appellant but on the same day he sought leave to withdraw. On 31 May 1995, the 15th day of the trial, Mr O’Loughlin announced his appearance for the appellant, informing the Court that he would be led by Mr Terracini. He sought an adjournment until 12 June to enable him and Mr Terracini to read the brief and prepare the defence. His Honour refused that application, stating that it was his opinion that the appellant had… Read more »

If a trucking company found that drivers were picking up young hitchikers and abusing them, it probably wouldn’t protect them, transfer them to another depot or give them a job at head office.


And this is a huge surprise to no one —

[TIM McCurdy (MLA, Murray Valley) concedes Big Buffalo dam is unlikely to come to fruition…]

This was one of the hundred dams Abbott committed to.

For years, sensible conversations about water resources in this area were stymied because the local Coalition MPs (including our own dear Sophie) would not rule out the expansion of the dam – even though they knew it could never happen.

In the meantime, investment opportunities have gone missing, and the Myrtleford community have clung to the false hope that the dam would be expanded as soon as there were Coalition governments in place.

Here we go —

[ONE of two North East lakes could be turned into a super dam under proposals to water and feed the nation.

Expanding either Lake Buffalo, near Myrtleford, or Lake William Hovell was highlighted in the federal ]Coalition’s draft discussion paper for water management…

The idea was highlighted during a visit to Lake Buffalo in October, 2011, by the Coalition’s dams taskforce chairman, Andrew Robb…

…Mrs Mirabella, who invited Mr Robb and the taskforce to the region, said she had always advocated Big Buffalo.]