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Day to Day Politics: Slipper’s life was destroyed for $900, yet Joe goes free.

Thursday 2 June 2016

1 Politics is a murderous beast that can destroy people’s lives over seemingly trivial matters. Former House of Representative’s Speaker, Peter Slipper saw his political career and his marriage implode over some cab charges that could have, had he been given the same opportunity as other politicians, easily been repaid.

Instead the Party for which he had worked for so diligently for many years decided for reasons of revenge, to annihilate him. And so they did, publicly with devastating effect. They ruined him financially and some may argue, mentally.

Now it has been revealed that Joe Hockey at the time when he was talking about “reckless spending” and that “the age of entitlement is over” was indeed himself taking advantage of taxpayer-funded entitlements. It has been alleged that his Cabcharge card was being fraudulently used for “phantom journeys” amounting to thousands of dollars.

You might recall that Joe was at the centre of a push to have Slipper removed as Speaker:

“I’m a Member of Parliament, I have standards, this is not up to my standards,” he said.

The “commonsense view” was that Slipper should stand down from “the most significant position in the Parliament” until he was cleared of allegations against him. He went on.

The Cabcharge company apparently told Hockey they intended reporting it to the Federal Police. The then Department of Finance and Deregulation investigated. Fairfax Media under FOI found that in relation to Mr Hockey’s account the rules for MPs using privately chauffeured hire cars were repeatedly broken. Cabcharge dockets upwards of $10,000 were signed with a hand written signature of the driver. The same method used by Slipper.

Hockey went to extraordinary lengths to not have the information released, even claiming to do so would put him at risk allowing the prediction of his movements in a heightened terrorism environment even though the events took place years before.

Hockey withdrew his objection to the release of the information when he decided to quit Parliament.

The point of course is how he could sit through the assassination of Peter Slipper knowing that he was guilty of the same crime. Unbelievable isn’t it, but there were probably more like him.

2 Petra Credlin is making her presence felt at Sky and her demeanour fits in with the station’s “let’s be controversial” format.

This time she is saying that the Deputy Prime Minister, Barnaby Joyce’s comments about Abbott wanting his job back as “horse shit”. ’She went onto tell Barnaby, “Honestly, Barnaby, get back on the wombat trail – please leave this alone”.

3 Isn’t it remarkable that more Commonwealth collected taxes are going to private schools than public schools? That the taxes of middle and lower paid workers are going to the richest schools.

A paper by The Centre for Policy Development has called for the Government to arrest the growth in inequality in schools. It says that privilege and social status in schools is becoming more entrenched and calls for a Gonski consensus to fix the problem:

“The data also reveals that we are in fact over-investing in many advantaged students. They receive, depending on sector and level of advantage, between $1,300 and $14,000 extra per student each year in funding from both parents and governments, but have similar achievement levels to lower-funded equivalents.”

4 BludgerTrack: 50.2-49.8 to Labor. Essential Research and Roy Morgan have both reported over the past few days, in accordance with their usual weekly and fortnightly schedules, giving BludgerTrack a completed weekly cycle’s worth of polling results to play with. The results indicate no real change on last week, with the recent ReachTEL, Essential and Morgan results exciting the aggregate neither collectively or individually. ReachTEL and Essential in particular recorded less week-on-week movement than their headline figures might suggest. The seat projection has ticked a point in favour of Labor, the gain coming off Tasmania in response to a fairly radical result in the Morgan breakdown this week. The only new data on leadership ratings since last week is from Essential Research, and it’s strengthened the impression that Malcolm Turnbull’s polling plunge has levelled off at a net value of zero, while slightly blunting Bill Shorten’s recent trend up

5 The Canberra Times today has this headline:Australian Christian Lobby likens gay marriage and Safe Schools to ‘unthinkable’ Nazi atrocities”,

If you think the plebiscite will simply be an endorsement of what the majority of Australians think, then think again.

My thought for the day.

Love is when there is an irresistible urge for the need of the affection of another and the irresistibly is of its nature mutual. It has no gender“.


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  1. lawrencewinder

    It still surprises me that the obvious hypocrisy of the ruling rabble of the past few years still hasn’t been seen through by the majority of Australians.Their “Pot-Calling-Kettle-Black-Bum” routine is so puerile and adolescent when the facts are pointed to it reaaly does the intelligence of the electorate no favours.

  2. Terry2

    Hockey was a sham , you may remember him on the subject of the regional processing and settlement of asylum seekers in Malaysia . He shed tears when saying he could not see little children being sent to Malaysia – evidently Nauru is fine, what a hypocrite.

    I assume the Cabcharge excesses are being referred to the AFP ??.

  3. Kaye Lee

    Cabcharge did not proceed with a police referral as the issue was “resolved” with the department of finance.

  4. helvityni

    How revolting they all are; the less I know about the Coalition, the better I sleep.

  5. John Lord

    Kaye as you would be aware Slippers Cabcharge could have been resolved in the same way.

  6. Kaye Lee

    Yes John, as were Bronnie’s helicopter and limo excesses. How many millions were spent pursuing Slipper for $900?

    “Mr Hockey withdrew his appeal to the AAT against the release of his destinations and other details in November after announcing he was leaving Parliament”

    Suck eggs you lot, I got myself a better job!

    And now we have to endure Bronnie and Credlin as political commentators – no doubt they will be objective.

    It seems the Coalition love to reward bad behaviour.

  7. Terry2

    Actually, Kaye, there is a pattern of former Liberal party acolytes actually becoming objective and learning to tell the truth once they break their ties with the Liberal Party . Foremost among these are Malcolm Fraser and John Hewson who both became valued members of society once they eliminated the Liberal virus from their systems.

    The same could happen with Bronnie and Peta.

    Studies so far have indicated that this condition is viral and immune to antibiotics but recovery is possible if those suffering go cold turkey and cut off all contact with the Liberal Party : more study needed though.

  8. helvityni

    Terry2, when I’m trying to find reasonable Liberal politicians, I can only think of those two, Fraser and Hewson, Fraser had a heart and Hewson a sense of humour.

  9. Peter F

    John, thanks for your ‘thought for the day’. I believe that the question of gay marriage is of concern to many because it exposes the sham that many ‘straight’ marriages are. “What is being defended?” is the question many are not willing to address. As a member of a gay group in which it is not unusual to have partnerships of 20-30 years standing, and some over 50 years, I can see the hypocrisy of those who oppose or delay the change.

  10. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    The best slap for Joe Hockey will be to publicly and unceremoniously sack him as the US Ambassador.

    Then, the New Alliance Government can instruct the AFP to institute belated fraud charges against Hockey for misappropriation of public funds for private purposes.

    Not a pretty fate but then Joe Hockey proved himself to be not a pretty politician and person.

  11. kerri

    I beg to differ John! Joe does not go free he goes rewarded with a plum job in a more than nice home in an exciting locale and all for a job poorly done. The worst treasurer in Australian history!

  12. Matthew Oborne

    Yes another Christian told me a gay couples home smells of arse. an elderly christian lady talking about leakage and all sorts of fabricated sick rubbish that is now flying around churches because of this being essentially a vote. It can not be a vote to give rights to groups, rights that many already have.

  13. jimhaz

    I always thought of Hockey as being the sort of bloke that would be an exec in a suss cleaning or waste company. One that overcharged clients, underpaid staff, cheated on tax, bribed for contracts etc.

  14. Florence nee Fedup

    Remember Slipper was cleared any wrong.

  15. Kaye Lee

    And that, for me, is the whole point Matthew. Since when did we get to vote about entrenching discrimination?

    It all gets back to the religious idea that the function of marriage is to condone sex and that sex is for purposes of procreation only.

    These edicts come from very old, supposedly celibate, white men who refuse to allow any women to be part of their hierarchy.

    If I was looking for relationship advice, a Catholic priest would be the last person I would consult.

  16. Kaye Lee


    Funny you should mention “an exec in a suss cleaning or waste company”……

    Turnbull and Wran’s cleaning company, Allcorp, lost in a tender a contract to a competitor, Tempo, to clean a State Bank building. Three days before Tempo was to begin the contract, a State Bank officer rang a Tempo executive: Tempo no longer had the contract, Allcorp would be retaining it, even though Tempo consultant James Cook claimed it had bid up to $70,000 a year less than AIlcorp. (“Odd things happen,” says Tumbull, “but whether that’s odd or strange I don’t know.”)

  17. Miriam English

    John, my favorite quote about love is by the famous science fiction writer Robert Heinlein:
    Love is that condition in which the happiness of another person is essential to your own.

    Many definitions of love allow for and include jealousy, which I think is a big mistake. A feeling of ownership can so easily be mistaken for obsessive love. That isn’t love; it is illness.

    A note about Robert Heinlein: He was a brilliant writer, engineer, and thinker. Unfortunately he was also sucked in by the libertarian beliefs that were circulating at the time and he worked very hard to expand and promote them in his writing. Often his main characters served largely to expound his political and social views (which come perilously close to eugenics). In spite of that, his stories are often great adventures with lots of interesting insights and ideas.

    I’m always surprised by the paradoxical way exceptional people like Heinlein can promote the idea of individualism and anti-state, anti-society philosophies, yet somehow be so proud of their society, often being more patriotic and gung-ho about humanity than people whose more moderate views about society let them see the importance of taxation and public services. Libertarians and right-wing extremists tend to reconcile the conflict in their views by using eugenics to see one group as worthy, and the other group as unnecessary, able to be discarded, thus improving the world for the worthy group.

    I’m glad eugenics is gradually falling out of favor. It certainly has had a long run. It reached its high-point with Hitler and his determined affort to rid the human race of “inferior” genetic stock to “purify” the species. We now know how very misguided that was. Eugenics was invented (or at least the word was invented) by wealthy and influential scientist Francis Galton in the late 1800s. It ended up being one of the worst ideas ever conceived and was used to justify racism and class-separation. It still is. A lot of the desire to dismantle the social safety net and public services has eugenics at its base, though it generally gets disguised though obfuscatory language, “user pays”, “eliminating waste”, “reducing taxes”, “financial incentives”, and so on. But if you peer beneath the words you’ll find the same writhing maggots of racist, classist eugenics. You can hear it pretty clearly in some of the LNP politicians’ unguarded moments. “Poor people don’t have cars”, “just get a well-paid job”, “dole-bludgers”, and so on. They’re still carrying on that tradition of eugenics — they honestly don’t think we deserve to live, unless we’re serving them.

    I do worry that with the coming hard times from climate change will see a resurgence of eugenic thinking. And you know who will be seen as dead weight. Hint: it won’t be the mega-wealthy leisure class and those politicians who get fat on the blood of society instead of doing their job.

  18. Luke

    I believe it is also illegal to buy a house from a friend or family member at a reduced price. Joe Hockey bought a house from a mate at a reduced price of $350,000,we the public payed the mortgage, Re overnight allowances, I believe he recently sold it for $1.3 million. As for Slipper, I believe Hockey, Pyne and Abbott knew and where involved in bringing Slipper down. What gets me down is they all get away with it. Politics is starting to get like America,polies are getting more and more like Trump.

  19. Ian Carter

    Hockey, the Biggest Leaner.

  20. Backyard Bob


    Then, the New Alliance Government can instruct the AFP to institute belated fraud charges against Hockey for misappropriation of public funds for private purposes.

    What? I mean, what? I think I’m gunna just pretend you didn’t suggest this.

  21. Deanna Jones

    Thank you, John. The idea of a plebiscite is causing a lot of distress among LGBT people, myself included. Let straights vote on whether or not we are human enough to share their rights? It’s sick. It also appears that random incidents of homophobic violence and abuse are increasing in certain areas. Blimey how did it come to this?

  22. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    I’m not entering into another debate with you ByB. 🙁

    Besides, haven’t you heard the common enemy is the LNP and my comment centred on the justified penalties that could await Hockey with some sensible leadership shown.

    Keep your eyes on the ball ie the LNP defeat on 2/7! 🙂

  23. Backyard Bob


    I’m not entering into another debate with you ByB.

    I wasn’t looking for a debate. There is no debate to be had. I was prodding you to consider the nature of what you suggested, which was that a Government ought instruct a police force to institute charges against a political enemy. You might wish to read this interview to see how bad things can get when politicians get this stuff wrong:

  24. Wayne Turner

    More proof the AFP are puppets of the Liberal party.They ONLY went after Slipper,after he fell out with the Libs.

    AFP don’t go after B. Bishop or Abbott for all their rorts.

    AFP raided a Labor party office,but nothing has happened about Liberal leaks eg: National security leaks,leaks to the media,etc,etc…

    When Labor is in next the AFP needs to be cleaned up.Including having a Royal Commission if need be.

  25. my say

    Judge Rares said the actions of Brough/Ashby were designed to bring an elected government down ,Isn’t that a crime,
    The police have been investigating emails between Brough/Ashby for a long time now ,when are the findings going to be made public

  26. Backyard Bob

    The Rares judgement was overturned so it’s legally irrelevant. As for when the current Ashby investigation will produce some sort of result – who can say? Maybe the incoming Alliance Government can instruct the AFP to charge someone. :/

  27. Vikingduk

    These sloppy joe journeys were, I think, being charged at $95 per hour, at least one journey was $750. Cabcharge proposed in April 2012 to refer the “apparent Fraud” to the AFP. Cabcharge did not proceed with referral as the issue was “resolved” with the Dept of Finance.
    John, wasn’t there a slight difference, I.e., hockey’s driver signed for Joe and Slipper signed blank dockets to be filled out later?
    As to schools, apparently some NSW public schools have either banned running in the playground and have had to stagger lunch breaks,etc., because of overcrowding.
    I struggle to retain hope that the brain dead don’t vote these thieving, lying pack of twunts in again.
    An intelligent unbiased MSM would be appreciated.
    Cheers all.

  28. Bolly

    A thought for Terry 2-
    If we collectively vote out Malcolm at this election, he may well have the opportunity to become the best ex-PM the country has ever had. I can see him now, released from the need to pander to the del-cons… arguing for all his past causes he is currently pretending he has never heard of.

  29. Florence nee Fedup

    The Rares Judgement wasn’t over ruled. What was over ruled was Ashby not being able to continue with the case. Permission was given, then Ashby dropped the matter. Slipper then was cleared. Complicated. As far as I know the allegations of Rares still stand.

  30. diannaart

    I am sure that in some amazing fantastical utopia, justice really happens.

    For myself, I am glad Hockey isn’t even here in Australia.

    @Miriam English

    Heinlein was indeed a good sci-fi writer of the 40’s, 50’s & 60’s. I got fed-up with his all conquering male protagonists, surrounded by increasingly more beautiful women who were as smart as they were beautiful (just to really rub in the salt to we lesser beings) and who would ‘share’ the love with other besotted beauties…. I’m starting to feel quite nauseous.

    Yes, I did take some interesting concepts from Heinlein – but, ultimately not edifying enough.

  31. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    ByB @ 12.13 pm,

    I accept that the direction of the reporter’s questions centres on the Separation of Powers dictates of Australian parliamentary systems.

    However, if the AFP is too gutless to investigate Hockey itself and should not be engaged by the New Alliance Government to bring Hockey to account, then the New Alliance Government should immediately institute a Federal ICAC, which will bring Hockey to account with the severe penalties I suggested above.

    Furthermore, since the AFP has proven itself to be prejudicial in doing the LNP’s dirty work while failing to keep the LNP to account itself, the AFP should be disbanded upon the Landslide defeat of the LNP on 2/7.

  32. cornlegend

    “New Alliance Government ”
    give it a rest, it ain’t gonna happen and you must be the only one not to realise that

  33. Jennifer Meyer-Smith



  34. Miriam English

    diannaart, heheheh 😀 I agree totally with what you say about Heinlein, though I give him a little allowance for the fact that he was a product of his time.

    My favorite two SF writers of all time are James Tiptree Jr (Alice Sheldon’s pen name) and John Wyndham.

    Alice Sheldon’s writing is superb. She was able to fit complex concepts into small spaces, alluding to things rather than describing them completely. Her stories tend to be a bit dark though… even her beautiful works. She was a master of the short story form. Her novels are less great than her short stories.

    John Wyndham wrote very accessibly. His style never got in the way of the story and his major characters were often women who were surprisingly well realised for the era. (Although when you consider he was raised entirely by his mother after she divorced her asshole violent husband perhaps it’s not so surprising.) My favorite of his books is “Trouble with Lichen”. Amazing story. Hmmm… it’s about time I reread it, as I do every several years.

  35. Miriam English

    cornlegend, I wouldn’t be surprised if an alliance developed between the progressives. Sure, Bill has said there won’t be, but I have a feeling that’s to avoid alienating the rabid anti-Greens members of his own party (and I think he’s made a mistake to do so). After the election if he is faced with having to share the power I expect he would be pragmatic enough to realise an alliance makes sense, even if it is unofficial.

    I think Jennifer is right to beat the drum on this. If progressives would stop attacking each other (as opposed to constructively criticising genuine shortcomings) then we would gain ground much more effectively.

  36. cornlegend

    No, there is no need for some formal ‘Alliance” with the Independent MPs and Bandt on power sharing, either by the LNP or ALP.
    If there was a hung Parliament there would only need to be an informal agreement as to Supply and the Bills before Parliament could each be negotiated on their merits.
    It is not the case that Shorten gave in to “rabid anti-Greens members of his own party” Plibersek, Butler, Albo and others as well as various ALP Premiers had spoken out on this issue. Even Chris Bowen said, “We are not interested in any Coalition agreements with any party,” he said. “I wrote about this in my book in 2013; Labor governs alone or not at all. Who parties vote for in a confidence vote is up to them. If there is a confidence vote after the election, and independents and other parties have to choose who to support, that’s a matter for them. We will not be entering into any agreements, coalitions or deals with the Greens or anybody else.”
    There is no reson at all why the Green and any Independents or Micro Parties elected to the H.O.R. can’t form their own little alliance of, on current numbers, 5, but I couldn’t see the Greens being too bound by that as they would only be a minority 20% of the alliance of 5, and their Party also has rules that members agree to abide by
    A hung Parliament would then get down to the GG accepting which Party could have a degree of certainty over Supply and he would decide

  37. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    Plibersek, Albo, Shorten, Bowen, Butler et al in Labor have a DUTY to the Australian people to provide a meaningful alternative government to the current neoliberalist monstrosity that calls itself the LNP.

    If those named above and others, purport to state they will not enter into any ALLiance (NB capitals), then they are committing injustices on all of us, who want and need a change of government on 2 July.

    Maybe cornlegend, your comfy Labor mates are complacent about their cushy jobs and their expected lifetime pensions so winning government is not their primary concern and NO skin off their backs, if they lose to the LNP Degenerates.

    If that is the case, I want Labor to fizzle out a lot sooner than I would have otherwise have considered because that would prove to me that those cynical Labor political arseholes are hardly worse than the dummies in the LNP.

    I suggest cornlegend, you and your ‘numbers’ wo/men start to advocate to the higher Labor hierarchy to get their effing bums into gear, or consider themselves undeserving of any right to provide any part of leadership in alternative government in Australia.

  38. cornlegend

    Jennifer Meyer-Smith
    Your continued veiled anti Labor sentiment is now bubbling over.
    ” to provide a meaningful alternative government ” and that is what they are attempting to do,, just not the way YOU want it.
    The ALP Leader, MPs, Premiers and rank and flie Tasmania have all made their position quite clear and I have no problem with that, in fact I am supportive.
    If in future there are some independents tthe calibre of Oakeshott and Windsor, or some MPS elected from a couple of the Micros I might have a change of heart but not now
    I want an end to LNP government but not on terms you specify.
    ” I want Labor to fizzle out a lot sooner than I would have otherwise have considered”
    If that is your position then settle down and accept Fizza and his mob of LNP degenerates.
    I am entitled to my point of view and whatever actions I take or do is my business.
    The ultimate arbiter will be the voter so my destiny, and yours is basically in their hands
    I will convey your message “or consider themselves undeserving of any right to provide any part of leadership in alternative government in Australia.” once you tell me who in your lifetime is going to provide this “alternative government” when, and how
    Now, back to converting the masses

  39. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    How dare you misinterpret my prolonged activism for anti-talk against Labor!

    You stubbornly characterise it that way when YOU know and so do other AIMN people know, my anti-LNP sentiments.

    To pretend that I am just anti-Labor shows YOUR insincerity, cornlegend.

    And yes, if the Canberra set of those I named above, are unable to stretch themselves to the BETTER goal of bringing the wide forces together to form Alternative Government (which might also be named The Alliance), then they don’t deserve government either.

    Unfortunately, you Labor and LNP bastards have got us ALL over the barrel. It’s either the devils you know or the devils you don’t know.

    Which one is your lot, cornlegend?

  40. cornlegend

    “Unfortunately, you Labor and LNP bastards”
    I’d have to pick “Labor bastard” 😀
    “How dare you misinterpret my prolonged activism for anti-talk against Labor!”
    would that also be those “Labor bastards”?

  41. Jennifer Meyer-Smith


    Be a Labor Bastard and Lose.

    Lose the affection of your stalwarts and your allies.

    Also, lose the affection of your potential longterm allies that could form the Alliance.

    If you and the other nutters can’t abide a sustainable, alternative and progressive NEW Government

    then it is Doom to Australia for yet another term of the effing LNP losers in Government.

    Enjoy your trip with the missus to Canada while the rest of us sweat.

    SHAME on you for being an ALP Apologist!

  42. Peter F

    How is it that we can have a ‘coalition’ on one side, but not an ‘ALLiance’ on the other? From where I sit, as a Labor supporter whose ABC votecompass puts me right amongst the Greens, it seems perfectly reasonable.

  43. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    Thank goodness Peter F and corvus boreus have brains and can see the Big picture.

  44. corvus boreus

    Correction of 7:58 post based upon clarification;
    ‘then gloatingly brag that they would strive like ‘a mythical place that you tell someone to go to’ (based on obscure WA slang rather than standard dictionary and legal usage of the term).

  45. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    🙂 corvus

  46. Bighead1883

    Peter F June 3, 2016 at 7:58 am

    You actually believe Vote Compass as the arbiter ?
    My goodness
    Vote Compass is rigged beyond Conservative measure this year and a discombobulation

    There will never be an Labor/Greens alliance=ever
    The sooner those who think this get it into their heads the better for them

  47. Jennifer Meyer-Smith


    I don’t believe it; you’re using Big words!

  48. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    Looks like censorship from above is alive and well today. 🙁

  49. Michael Taylor

    Yes, it is. By the looks of it, it needs to be.

  50. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    Where is the moderator when one needs one?

    Your definition of an internet troll and mine are poles apart, Bighead. And by the way, I’d say your wrong accusation is the pot calling the kettle black!

    Whatever my crimes, at least you can see my beautiful face and you know my real name. That makes me authentic. What are you?

  51. Michael Taylor

    Jennifer, moderators are expensive. It’s far more efficient if people think before they comment.

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