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Day to Day Politics: When only the truth will do, Mr Turnbull.

Sunday May 22 2016

In the progress of an election campaign the Communications Minister is informed that the AFP intends raiding the home of the Deputy Opposition leader in the Senate Stephen Conroy. Later he confesses he already knew about it.The raid is in relation to leaked documents that are embarrassing to the Prime Minister’s performance when he was Communications Minister.

The leak revealed cost blowouts, costing errors and delays. In other words it revealed Turnbull’s gross incompetence during his tenure as Communications Minister.

The Minister in question says he didn’t inform the Prime Minister. The Prime Minister says he shouldn’t have. Even though he, Mitch Fifield, is a director of NBN he says he was not involved in the decision to refer the leak to the AFP.

AFP commissioner Andrew Colvin says that no one in the Communications Minister’s office had been aware of the investigation before Thursday’s raids.

And The Australian newspaper reported that: “Fifield and the NBN chief executive, Bill Morrow, had kept in contact about the government-owned broadband company’s internal efforts to track down the leaker of the documents, and as those efforts proved fruitless, Morrow made clear he was considering referring the case to the AFP”.

An employee of NBN acting as a special constable tags along with the police and during the raid takes a number of photographs and sends them to NBN. God knows who else they have been forwarded to.

Penny Wong said: “The Government should tell Australians who got the photos and the Government should make clear they’ve been destroyed”.

It was also rumoured that another leak was imminent that would be very damaging to the Prime Minister. Andrew Colvin said “the offending has been ongoing”.

Why was this leak given precedence over others involving matters of national security?

Bill Shorten’s response was to say that it was “inconceivable” that Senator Fifield did not tell Mr Turnbull or the Prime Minister’s office about the possible investigation:

“It’s either gross incompetence or indeed its far worse and we’re not being told the truth”.

My response was:

“When you tell a lie you deny the other person’s right to the truth, or go pull the other one”.

My thought for the day.

Free speech does not mean it should be free from ethics. Like truth, for example”.

 

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24 comments

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  1. Duffa

    There are big concerns about the NBN and why we aren’t we being told about the state of the NBN.
    Also big concerns why the AFP have made such a highly publicised raids at this time!
    But I am not sure about the claim Mr Fifield confessed to knowing about the raids his statement said
    “I have had no interaction with the AFP during their investigation. Nor did I have any knowledge of, nor involvement in, matters that occurred this week, as was confirmed by the AFP Commissioner yesterday.”

  2. Terry2

    The coalition are desperate to get border security back on top of the agenda but Dutton’s slurs on illiterate, non English speaking migrants taking all our jobs (and languishing on unemployment queues while bludging on Medicare) have derailed the strategy and rather than Labor being shown up as weak on border protection, Dutton has managed to insult generations of migrants and their far from illiterate descendants.

    But rest assured the coalition spinners want to get back on border security as soon as possible once they have diffused the NBN debacle. I note that Peta Credlin has been recruited to get the coalition’s attack back on track writing an opinion piece for News Corp, flagged :

    ‘They [Labor] are mired in a debate about border protection and immigration that they simply cannot win.’

    Wrong Peta, Labor are not ‘mired’, the coalition are caught in their own spin cycle and it’s hurting them.

  3. Jaquix

    Anyone would think the NBN was the top security agency in the country. If it were, leaking information from within would indeed be a serious matter worthy of AFP attention. But this is just a glorified government department. Owned and financed by the people, who should be getting the information as a matter of public interest and accountability. A midnight raid on a political opponent mid election campaign is a serious matter indeed. The story put out by stony faced AFP chief starts to unravel when government minister says Oh no, I did know about it but I didnt tell anyone else, certainly my good mate the Prime Minister. Lots more will be coming out about this Im sure. Funny too how the Australian knew so much background information.

  4. Garth

    Among other questions i want to know who gave the press a heads-up so they were standing by to cover the raids. That to me, more than anything else, shows this whole mess to be the political exercise it is. And when we have the government (or wholly owned government agencies /companies) using security forces to oppress their opponents, we are now living in a pseudo – democracy. I know many in the street don’t give a crap about this whole debacle but it can’t be left to just drift away in the news cycle. I’m just disgusted.

  5. Wam

    Great words today, lord! You are a must do, as soon as possible each day. What an effort and greatly appreciated.
    Is it ironic that an employee of the NBN puts ‘a cloud’ over the investigation and that I cloud the ‘destroyed photos’?
    Are Mal, Mitch and the boys so agitated, consternated and trepidated with the demons of Nixon that they would organise a break in?
    Do we have a Bernstein and Woodward?
    ps thought???
    Thanks for the thought!!
    I imagined that free speech was truth as long as you believed it was or non-truth was not a lie as long as it would lead to truth.
    Too confusing for my simpleton brain. So I’ll stick with:
    If one man’s truth is a woman’s poison does she drink?

  6. Kaye Lee

    The thing that absolutely flabbergasts me is that the Senate is entitled to ask for information about the NBN. It is a Government Business Enterprise. The cost and rollout and any problems are information that the public is entitled to know.

    But when it comes to foreign bribery cases…..

    In a recent report, the OECD was scathing of Australia’s record, pointing out that Australia “has only one case that has led to foreign bribery prosecutions, out of 28 foreign bribery referrals received by the Australian Federal Police (AFP) … this is of serious concern”.

    One of the 28 cases referred to the AFP related to two properties in Chinese Macau part owned by James Packer’s company, Crown.

    A former Macau official is currently serving a 289-year sentence for accepting bribes of up to $100 million, with various suspect projects named, including the casinos.

    The OECD report notes Australian police did not launch a domestic investigation into any possibility of Crown’s involvement.

    Crown says none of its staff or officers was cited or indicted in the case.

    The one case they did pursue, the RBA’s Note Printing Australia case, was put under a suppression order so we can’t even find out what is going on, other than that the whistleblower was sacked.

    Brian Hood, former company secretary at the Reserve Bank-owned Note Printing Australia, blew the whistle on bribery and kickbacks allegations.

    “I didn’t get the sort of protection that I expected. I lost my job. I was made redundant,” he said.

  7. townsvilleblog

    The organization that I used to work for (the Industrial wing of) OPSM had a couple of brothers named hood, there was Robin, their parents must have thought he would be a good salesman, and I can’t recall the others name. However Kaye, he seems brian that is, to be a very nasty piece of work, which without doubt places him in the same family as the Robin Hood I used to know at Protector Safety. Kaye your writing in particular is invaluable in the current campaign.

  8. corvus boreus

    Currently, any oversight of the AFP lies with the ‘Integrity Commissioner’, supported by the ACLEI (Australian Commission for Law Enforcement integrity Commission). This commission’s powers seem to relate only to the various agencies of enforcement, not to those involved in formulating and facilitating the different laws, policies and actions .
    https://www.aclei.gov.au/acleis-role.

  9. andrew moran

    Fifield didn’t need to tell Turnbull. Turnbull knows he made a pigs breakfast of the NBN. He just hopes voters don’t care.

  10. Zathras

    After all the noise they made about making public a “Cost Benefit Analysis” for the NBN while in opposition it’s a bit unreasonable for them to be secretive about how they are spending our money now.

    It’s not like there’s a Commercial-In-Confidence excuse at work here.

  11. kasch2014

    When the government commits crimes, the people are charged and prosecuted. If we want effective government (management) we have to resort to total open everything in “business and government” – we need to be able to force out corrupt and incompetent people in all areas of public life whenever necessary. We need guidelines which are short and simple, and that way maybe some sort of democracy can function. See http://www.lifesupportinternational.org for an idea for a new Australian constitution which has values and structure to enable that, perhaps. It’s short and sweet, with a downloadable booklet with lots of pictures and whatnot, called W Tree Missive.

  12. Duffa

    On Insiders this morning Mathias Cormann claimed the AFP was investigating the theft of Intellectual property. I wonder what that could be or if Intellectual Property is now covers that is written down or recorded. If so almost anything could be classed as Intellectual property and taking such without permission can be used to base an investigation. Or Maybe Cormann was just making it up as he went along.

  13. Jaquix

    Corman is such a drone. He drones on and on and puts listeners (and interviewers) to sleep. Barrie Cassidy did his best with him this morning, but let him get away with a few things, like calling the paperwork “intellectual property” and not asking him to comment on the fact that the Labor Party has claimed that some of the documentation was their own draft policy on the NBN. The whole thing stinks to high heaven on so many levels.

  14. jim

    Amazing job he MS media do in covering up Turnbulls incompetence Amazing.

  15. Kat

    Question to Malcolm Turnball ? Why did you go into politics ?

  16. Bill Morris

    Free speech has the same value as it’s content, “Nothin’ ain’t worth nothin’ but its free” (Kristofferson/Foster). The truth is priceless, so In the reign of Malcolm the Excited (aka Malcolm the Waffler) we are not going to see much of that, unless of course it makes a profit..

  17. Jack

    Extreme Capitalism doesn’t work !!!!!

  18. Glenn K

    The most alarming aspect of all of this is the proactive support of the ruling LNP by the AFP. As if our black uniformed border force is nor enough, the AFP are now actively protecting the LNP, or at least trying to. This is shocking, this is behavior one see’s in dictatorships. I am horrified, it is a slippery slope we are going down. In fact, it scares me more than anything i have see in Australia before. I didn’t expect Keating’s caution of a banana republic would head in a security state direction….

  19. Jack Russell

    Emperors, praetorian guards, corrupt politicians, patricians, military coersion, resources theft, genocide, religious support, bread, circuses, slaves . . . it’s not like it isn’t familiar and we don’t know how it all works . . . is it?

  20. mark

    malcolm the master race.mark

  21. oldfart

    who is going to investigate the leak from within the LNP or AFP, as to who alerted the media to the fact a raid was going to occur? so this is a leak about a leak. The ship of state is the only ship that leaks from the top (Hacker et al)

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