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Turnbull’s Yellow Peril 2.0 is the panda in the room.

“The horrible thing about the Two Minutes Hate was not that one was obliged to act a part, but, on the contrary, that it was impossible to avoid joining in.” George Orwell, 1984

Nothing in our politics excites such primitive passions than a public shaming of a traitor – and his expulsion from our virtuous midst. Especially if this involves a public lynching. And so it is with the extraordinary story of the casting out of diabolical Sam Dastyari which dominates the week in politics eclipsing even the Bennelong bunfight, a bit of a non-event save for a 6% swing to Labor so far which would win it the next federal election. But nothing will ever rescue Sam.

Spurned by his leader, abandoned by colleagues, tormented by Coalition foes, Dastyari is hounded from office, Tuesday, amidst a frenzy of anti-Chinese hysteria, or “Chino-phobia” as Bill Shorten says, which fuels wild accusations of betrayal all cynically engineered by an embattled Turnbull government desperate for distraction and a scapegoat for its woes.

Yet it’s overkill. The harrying of Sam has all the fecund irrationality of a witch hunt. Which it is – at least in part.

Perhaps, also, somehow we’ve dredged up a monster from the deep. Phil May’s Mongolian Octopus has re-surfaced, its writhing, slimy Chinese tentacles threaten every element of our innocent nation’s virtuous (multicultural) ways of life.

One thing is clear. Expulsion is too good for Sam. Even after his exit, Dastyari’s detractors continue their insults.

What is so dastardly about Dastyari? Ben Eltham writes, “Dastyari has been forced to resign, not so much for taking money from foreign donors, but for so obviously showing the political favour that can be bought with such largesse.”

The tragedy of Dastyari’s forced political exit results less from being found by the kangaroo court of Sydney talkback radio to be a spy – or, in Grand Inquisitor Peter Dutton’s dud phrase, “a double agent” – than from his leader, Bill Shorten’s expediency. Shorten must sacrifice Sam lest he mess up Labor’s chances in the Bennelong by-election.

And worse. The Coalition and its media claque are destroying Dastyari to redouble their attack on “Shifty Bill” Shorten’s trustworthiness, his credibility and leadership. Sam must go. Yet nothing about the decision is easy.

Even Sam’s carefully scripted exit lines evoke the self-styled party martyr more than any type of penitent confession.

I’ve been guided by my Labor values, which tell me that I should leave if my ongoing presence detracts from the pursuit of Labor’s mission … It is evident to me we are at that point, so I will spare the party any further distraction.”

Dastyari is a talented politician; a factional ally and a party power broker with a history of personal loyalty to his leader.

And Shorten is indebted to Sam the king maker. As NSW Labor Party Secretary, he rallied Labor’s Right and managed Shorten’s campaign well enough to gain victory over Anthony Albanese in Labor’s leadership stakes, 13 October 2013.

It was a close contest. In Labor’s first leadership ballot to include grassroots party members, the ALP parliamentary caucus gives Shorten 63.95% of the vote while with 60% grass-roots support, Albanese is more widely popular.

Yet Bill doesn’t shilly-shally. Unlike Turnbull’s 18 months agonising on the banks, Shorten takes 13 days to sack Sam. Aaron Patrick in The Australian Financial Review admires the Labor leader’s decisiveness . But how has it come to this?

Sam’s fate is part-sealed when a patriotic Fairfax publishes Sam’s South China speech, a talk he gave in China 17 June 2016 in which he backs the Chinese Government’s refusal to abide by international court rulings on the South China Sea.

“The Chinese integrity of its borders is a matter for China,” he says.

The “Iranian-born-Australian”, (how the ABC loves to diminish Dastyari’s citizenship) opposes Australia’s and Labor’s position on China’s bullying in the South China Sea. He tells his listeners and benefactors what they want to hear.

Labor and Liberal Party donor, billionaire businessman and head of YUHU group, Huang Xiangmo is present.

It’s not the carpeted Persian’s first offence. Sam’s already been pilloried mercilessly in parliament and press; endured a year of gibes for allowing another fat cat, Dr Minshen Zhu, to pay a $1600 office travel expense for him.

Neither of these comes within cooee of Andrew Robb’s $800,000 PA secret China contract for a part time position with Chinese company Landridge which in the words of former NSW supreme court judge Anthony Whealy, means “on the face of it, he is required not to do anything and still get a whacking great fee”.

The Turnbull government is to come up with a beaut new public register for those who lobby on behalf of foreign interests which will capitalise on the anti-Chinese hysteria it’s created while cracking down on GetUP! And crippling the vital advocacy work done by overseas charities and other international bodies who may criticise offshore detention.

Robb is upbeat. The register would not apply to him because” he doesn’t do business here”. But not so Dr Zhu.

Dr Zhu, a senior adviser at the University of Sydney’s Confucius Institute, and principal of Top Education Institute, donates to both Liberal and Labor. Photos show him with pals Malcolm Turnbull, Tony Abbott, Kevin Rudd, Julia Gillard, Scott Morrison, Kim Carr, Bob Carr, Brendan Nelson and Julie Bishop in various roles across government and opposition.

Australian Electoral Commission records show Top Education gave $230,000 to both parties since 2010. Like Huang and almost every other outstandingly successful businessman in our political Yum Cha he has Beijing links.

Yet the Fairfax story 29 November is a bombshell. Using material that Labor figures contend came from “intelligence sources”, a shadowy but beguiling oxymoron, Fairfax reports another meeting between Dastyari and Huang.

On the unlikely face of it, good old Sam is just doing his pal a favour. Weeks after Dastyari had to quit the shadow ministry, he is said to have warned Huang his phone was most likely being bugged by intelligence agencies.

This is either insultingly gratuitous advice or a clumsy intelligence operative’s ex post facto attempt to verbal Sam.

Now the shit hits the fan-tan. Inveterate ham actor that he is, Turnbull milks the incident for all its worth.

“Here he is, an Australian senator who has gone to a meeting with a foreign national with close links to a foreign government and advises that foreign national Mr Huang to put their phones inside to avoid the possibility of surveillance.” Turnbull bellows in the house. “Whose side is Sam on?”

As Dave Donovan notes, Sam’s quite reasonable caution about likely phone-tapping tells us a great deal about the era of Turnbull and Trump. And it beggars belief that Huang would not suspect his phone was being bugged. But that’s what double agents do. Is this the obviously fake detail to throw us off the scent? Make us miss the habeas corpus?

No habeas corpus exists. As from this week an MP can be hounded out of office just if government makes enough fuss.

Dastyari’s major crime … was telling a contact their privacy may be compromised because he was most probably under surveillance by the CIA. Given subsequent events, it appears Dastyari was on the money. Apparently, wanting to exercise your rights to privacy and free association is prima facie evidence of treason in this new Orwellian age, says Dave.

Has Sam been set up? There are disturbing clues that Sam may be the fall guy in some bigger intelligence sting. As Labor figures suggest, Dastyari’s phone advice could come only from some intelligence agency. Unless, of course, Huang, himself is a double agent. Yet, regardless of source, the story becomes terminally damaging to Dastyari.

Clearly Sam has stuffed up. Now his opponents and some of his party accuse him of fatal errors of judgement.

What follows, however, is more serious and disturbing for a nation which prides itself adhering to the rule of law, especially the cardinal principle that all people are presumed innocent unless proved otherwise.

Sam is judged guilty of treason based on unfounded accusations made without due or proper regard for evidence. Dutton’s nonsense that he is a double agent, for example, is endlessly repeated verbatim. If Sam were a double agent, he’d be pretending to spy for China while actually spying on them for Australia.

If Sam were a double agent, the AFP would be busting his place apart with crews from all major TV channels filming.

The government, assisted by the media and hyper-egomaniac George Brandis, a bulked-up Big Brother body double, aka the Attorney General from hell, who dubs Sam “a serial offender” despite Sam’s never having been convicted of a crime, subjects Dastyari to a McCarthyite witch trial.

Sam is tried in a theatre of extreme cruelty with a lynch mob’s contempt for his right to a fair and just process. In CIA jargon, his career is “terminated with extreme prejudice”. Yet, even then, voices are baying for his blood.

“He should get out of the Senate, and Bill Shorten should boot him out of the Labor Party,” Turnbull shrieks on 3AW.

Knowing – as he surely must – that the second call is nonsense, doesn’t get in the way of hate-speak. The PM’s vindictiveness is echoed by Liberals’ deputy leader, Julie Bishop who makes another stupid demand,

“Sam Dastyari should resign effective immediately. He shouldn’t receive another cent in salary from the Australian people.”

It’s an unprecedented dismissal, as Phil Coorey notes in the Australian Financial Review.

“Plenty of politicians have committed acts of stupidity and worse over the years but it’s hard to recollect anyone who has been frog-marched out of Parliament.”

What has Sam done wrong? Everything, it seems. A political tall poppy in all but height, the mildly obnoxious, self-promoting Dastyari has long been unjustly caricatured as an over-ambitious, self-promoting, attention-seeking creature of Labor’s shady NSW Right even though, at 34, he is one of the youngest ever state Labor Party secretaries.

Yet, in April 2015, he led a crusade to get multinational corporations to pay tax. He chaired a Senate Inquiry into Corporate Tax Avoidance. This July, when he ran a senate committee into the future of public interest journalism, another tantalising oxymoron, he clearly recognised the gravity of its decline.

“This is a serious problem. We have got to the point of no return. If we want to have a proper journalistic industry here in Australia then we have to actually start taking steps to protect it.”

Sam was also highly effective in questioning the CEOs of our Big Four banks.

Yet all of this is irrelevant unless you subscribe to the theory that Sam’s fatal career move was to take on the banks. And upsetting multinationals who are funny about being asked to pay tax. Not only is he outed as some sort of spy, moreover, his own leader is so wedded to his own political survival that he is prepared to throw Sam under a bus. Yet there’s a wider perspective, also in which Sam is merely a bit-player in the murkier interstices of our US Alliance.

The political lynching of Dastyari, forced to resign over accusations he’s a mole; a “double agent” betraying his nation’s interests by being a paid advocate for China’s policy in The South China Sea, may also make him a casualty of a Coalition keen to play craven sycophant to its “great and powerful friend” the USA – a Turnbull government which will do anything to boost its chances of winning a Bennelong by-election on which rests its parliamentary majority.

Right on cue, Sam’s downfall is seized upon by US commentators keen to point up how China threatens western democracies, Australia and New Zealand. Marco Rubio, former Republican presidential candidate, brings up Sam at a bipartisan, congressional executive commission, during a two-hour hearing he just happens to be chairing Wednesday.

“What we saw in Australia [was] a member of Parliament resigned after there were accusations made that, not only had he tipped off a Chinese national of some alleged intelligence operation being conducted against him, but that he had allegedly received cash from a wealthy Chinese national,” Senator Rubio says.

The hapless Dastyari could also be the canary in our nation’s political coal mine. Surely this weekend’s battle for the Bennelong by-election is the low point of a long campaign of Liberal gutter politics, smearing AWU unionists, refugees on Manus and now a Labor senator – if not the nadir of Malcolm Turnbull’s career?

Surely, also, it is another epic failure of political judgement; a serious miscalculation of consequences?

Certainly, the government’s frenzied attack on the Labor senator, eagerly inflamed by its unctuous toadies, the mainstream media, including the increasingly partisan ABC, is widely condemned both within Australia and in China.

“Needlessly nasty” Labor heavyweight mate Graham Richardson, former Hawke and Keating numbers man, writes in The Australian of the wanton destruction of the Labor senate back-bencher’s political career. He would know.

“Carpet-bombing” says Paul Bongiorno, needing military metaphor to capture Malcolm Turnbull’s over-the-top attack.

“Hysterical, paranoid and racist” says The China’s People’s Daily, our largest trading partner’s official voice.

Wednesday, the Chinese rag accuses Turnbull of “pandering to anti-China bias”. Is Yellow Peril 2.0 the Panda in the room? Never one to skimp on rhetorical reiteration, the paper also alleges Fairfax Media and the ABC are “jointly whipping up an anti-China backlash”. Turnbull is buying into “an orchestrated media falsehood”.

China is not happy. Whichever pejorative term you prefer, the despatching of Dastyari is classic Turnbullian over-kill. Experts warn that reprisals may follow although given the volume of our vast trade, they have yet to narrow the field. Fewer tourists? Cuts in overseas students? Options for payback are vast.

James Laurenceson in the Australian Financial Review cautions that “cooperation on removing outstanding bilateral trade and investment barriers, not to mention on bigger regional challenges, might be put in the slow lane.

Chinese households might start to find that California wine tastes better than ours and the views at Waikiki eclipse those along the Great Ocean Road.”

A manic Turnbull is all over the airwaves like a man possessed. The magic pudding of public hysteria gets endless stirring. He dubs Dastyari a double-agent. Excoriates Sam for jeopardising our national security. Helping China to spy on us, even though Sam says he has no secrets to sell. The slur is unsullied by a shred of evidence yet impossible to refute.

Dutton calls him shady. He has no evidence, he says, but his slur is based on “what he knows of Dastyari so far”.

The government elevates Dastyari to Public Enemy Number One in order to dent Labor’s chances in Saturday’s Bennelong by-election, a one-sided contest between parliamentary seat-warmer, John Alexander, who boasts of putting table tennis tables in Bennelong’s schools and not missing a local fair or fete.

A courageous raconteur, his anecdotes and cringe-worthy off the cuff remarks speak for themselves.

Charges against Sam are laid in the court of Sydney talk-back by Peter Dutton, an MP who is tasked with protecting our borders from the Armani-wearing people-smuggler enabling riff-raff who would come in the backdoor via boat as illegal maritime arrivals instead of hopping on the next plane. Or that’s Dutto’s potted version of his brief.

Nasty Dastyari is a “double-agent”, alleges Dutton, leading an orgy of public denunciation in an attempt to hound him out of office in a warm-up to his assuming super-minister powers when he becomes Home Affairs Minister next week. Perhaps then, he’ll find some way of stripping Sam of his citizenship and repatriating him to Iran.

Panjandrum Pete will head up a super-ministry which does not include a Hate-Speak department by name, as yet, but which, innovatively, sets up an Orwellian Office of National Intelligence. Expect it to call out spies, denounce GetUP! and other enemy agents in our midst, whilst it supports Sydney shock-jocks in denouncing un-Australian activity.

Home Affairs’ powers remain nebulous. What is clear, however, is that details will soon become scarcer. As we have seen with Border Force, operational matters preclude transparency and accountability. It’s all part of Pooh-Bah Dutton’s watching brief over us. He will keep Australia safe, protect our freedoms and nurture our multi-cultural democracy. Don’t you worry about that.

Not only will Home Affairs persecute traitors like Sam, it will be a one-stop shop for cradle to grave protection. An English language test, for example, for new citizens, is undergoing a bit of fine-tuning after initially being howled down by a Coalition-dominated parliamentary committee last September – a rare achievement in this government.

But it’s not just about language. The test is part of an exciting new package proposal which has passed the lower house and aims to introduce a four-year waiting period for permanent residents before they can apply for citizenship while imposing tough English language requirements and a test on “Australian values”. Even if these are yet to be articulated.

Home Affairs (HA) is clearly keen to ensure we get the right kind of migrant and for this alone it needs be a huge outfit.

HA will combine ASIO, the AFP, the Coalition’s pet police force and our quiet achievers, the secretive Australian Border Force, who only this week, returned a boatload of 29 Sri-Lankan asylum-seekers to Colombo and certain persecution.

Given Dutto’s conspicuous lack of success in merging Immigration with Border Force, the wisdom of Turnbull’s over-promotion of the Immigration Minister is self-evident. It’s simple self-preservation. Keep the mongrel so busy he can’t make trouble. Every man for himself is team Turnbull’s motto.

Dutton will be so busy, schemes strategic genius Turnbull, that he won’t pose any leadership threat. The flaw in this cunning plan is that Dutto’s alarming lack of success in any department is certain to continue into HA. Combining so many departments may have a crisis-multiplier effect. But given operational secrecy, no-one will ever know.

The nation has much to give thanks for now that our state show trial apparatus is set up. Enemies of the state beware.

We look forward to feeling hugely more secure with the elevation of paranoid Peter Dutton, Australia’s most unpopular, most secretive, least competent minister to a position of unparalleled power in a Home Affairs super-ministry which experts universally expressly warned the Turnbull government never to set up. Expect a show trial next week.

Given the huge success of the lynching of Sam Dastyari and building on recent AFP union raids to recover ten-year old receipts, the nation can expect to see similarly brilliant strategies deployed against Labor or indeed any other organisation including GetUp! or unions which pose a threat to Liberal rule – or any other outfit or individual whose actions or beliefs may interfere with the enlightened despotism of Menzies’ sensible centre as mediated through Malcolm Turnbull’s top secret Coalition agreement with the Nationals.

This week has seen the nation take another step into emulating the political dystopia George Orwell warned us about in 1984. The trouble with the Coalition – and their pals in the United States of America is that they think it’s a primer.

 

 

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19 comments

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  1. Vixstar

    Thank you David great article I am shocked that this Liberal formula of accusing and harassment of Labor politicians until they resign is the only way they think of to win an election or a newspoll. Gone are the days of good policies it’s all about playing hang -man and the Liberal Rupert chairman Mal are becoming masters of the game. Soon Australia will have sold its soul and be known as little America “home of the unfree,” the statue of Liberty will weep forever.

  2. Robert REYNOLDS

    Full marks for your very colorful attempts to defend the indefensible David.

    Face up to the facts, Sam Dastyari did the wrong thing. He was caught out. Whether it was a ‘sting’ operation by security forces or not, he had to go. That is the reality.

    When you take on the big-end of town as Sam did with the banks, you must not only be absolutely ‘squeaky clean’ but you must be seen to be so or the plutocrats will get you somehow.

    I could say more but I am pressed for time at the moment.

  3. Peter F

    The links to US spy agencies cannot be ignored: remember 1975.

  4. Peter F

    Robert Reynolds. I agree with the thought that anyone who tries to expose corruption on the many fronts that Sam Dastyari has done must himself be above reproach otherwise he will be destroyed by the very people whose corruption he is exposing.

    His work in the Senate has been put to an end, but in whose interests? Certainly not Australia’s,

  5. Robert REYNOLDS

    Hi Peter F,

    yes I certainly do remember the events of 1975 -vividly! At that time I was paid up member of the ALP and looking back I made all sorts of excuses for the silliness of the Tirath Khemlani loans fiasco. I defended the Labor Government just as trenchantly then as David defends Sam Dastyari’s actions now. But I think that I have become a little more objective in my thinking since those days.

    Yes, it is a pity also, that Sam is no longer in the senate grilling the banks. He was doing a very good job, there is no doubt about that but he made the mistake of leaving himself open to attack and he has paid the price. If the Labor Party was doing its job properly then there would be others in the party who would take his place.

  6. Audioio

    I would encourage Dastyari to sue Peter Dutton for defamation.

  7. townsvilleblog

    Vixstar, I agree we have almost lost our Australian identity, and have nearly become the 51st State of the USA.

  8. townsvilleblog

    Dastyari dis do the wrong thing in attempting to have a Chinese businessman pay for his expenses, no question there. He was on a Senators pay of all but $200,000 per annum, and he looked greedy which put him offside with the public. He is another aberration of the dreaded NSW Right wing of the ALP. Worth noting that in general Australia wide it is usually the right wing members of the party who bring scandal to the party, not always but in the main, in my humble opinion.

  9. Zathras

    While I’m not trying to justify Dastiyari’s actions, having a local mining billionairess pay to fly certain politicians to attend another billionaire’s wedding in India and having them flying back home at taxpayers expense under the confected excuse of a “fact-finding mission” could never be seen as anything dodgy could it?

    Politicians and journalists accepting all-expenses paid excursions to Israel in return for favourable media coverage and support must be totally above board as well. Nothing to worry about there either.

    As well as Andrew Robb breaking the 18month convention before working for private interests associated with his previous portfolio, Peter Reith ended up working for a company closely involved with his Defence portfolio. There must be many others if anyone bothers to check.

    Like the racist genie the Liberals let out of the bottle that can’t be put back in they should be careful where these allegations may eventually lead, not to mention using intelligence information for political advantage.
    For example, Andrew Bolt was illegally shown classified so-called WMD “evidence” specifically for Howard’s political purposes.

    A Federal ICAC would certainly uncover a lot of interesting things.

  10. Ricardo29

    Colourful attempts to defend the indefensible? Robert Reynolds. I think David has done an excellent job of exposing, in a comprehensive way, the hypocrisy and dirty dealings of the LNP. I think we all accept that Sam did some silly, even stupid things, but were they sufficient to have him hounded from the Senate in the way he was? I don’t think so and I am enough of a conspiracy theorist to see the grubby fingers of our intelligence agencies involved in the leaks to Fairfax which pinged him. I agree with Tony Burke that Turnbull, Dutton, Bishop et al will live to rue the day they took us into these uncharted waters.

  11. Bert

    Any parliamentarian that does the wrong thing should be given a very quick one way trip to the exit whatever the party, I know it’d be a bit harder with the L/NP. As for the cartoon/pic at the top of the article, does anyone else see a passing resemblance to spud head Dutton?, or is it just me?

  12. Kaye Lee

    George Brandis is heading off to be the Next High Commissioner in London. The new Attorney-General, who will be the only oversight of Dutton’s gig, will be one of two people – Christian Porter or….wait for it….Michaelia Cash.

  13. Phil

    I didn’t read a defence of Sam’s actions in David’s article. What I read was an expose of strategy and tactics that power under threat always stoops to. In this case Sam was the useful trigger for the red scare. It’s common knowledge that the business lobby and the donations regime has thoroughly corrupted our politics and until this racquet is terminated, we have every reason to call a pox on the parliament.

  14. Jon Chesterson

    Prime cuts:

    HATE SPEECH, RIOTOUS ACCUSATION, POLITICAL LYNCHING, DEATH BY MARTYRDOM – DUTTON’S BRAVE NEW WORLD

    VITRIOLIC LIBERAL THUNDER – ‘What has Sam done wrong? Everything, it seems. A political tall poppy in all but height, the mildly obnoxious, self-promoting Dastyari has long been unjustly caricatured as an over-ambitious, self-promoting, attention-seeking creature of Labor’s shady NSW Right even though, at 34, he is one of the youngest ever state Labor Party secretaries’.

    THE PUBLIC TRUTH AND INTEREST UNSPOKEN – ‘Yet, in April 2015, he led a crusade to get multinational corporations to pay tax. He chaired a Senate Inquiry into Corporate Tax Avoidance. This July, when he ran a senate committee into the future of public interest journalism, another tantalising oxymoron, he clearly recognised the gravity of its decline. Sam was also highly effective in questioning the CEOs of our Big Four banks’. Now that was a threat to the crumbling towers of capitalism.

    RIOTOUS MARTYRDOM ON THE EDGE PARLIAMENT – ‘Charges against Sam are laid in the court of Sydney talk-back by Peter Dutton, an MP who is tasked with protecting our borders from the Armani-wearing people-smuggler enabling riff-raff who would come in the backdoor via boat as illegal maritime arrivals instead of hopping on the next plane. Or that’s Dutto’s potted version of his brief’.

    LIBERAL INQUISITION – ‘Nasty Dastyari is a “double-agent”, alleges Dutton, leading an orgy of public denunciation in an attempt to hound him out of office in a warm-up to his assuming super-minister powers when he becomes Home Affairs Minister next week. Perhaps then, he’ll find some way of stripping Sam of his citizenship and repatriating him to Iran’.

    KANGAROO COURTROOMS – ‘Panjandrum Pete will head up a super-ministry which does not include a Hate-Speak department by name, as yet, but which, innovatively, sets up an Orwellian Office of National Intelligence. Expect it to call out spies, denounce GetUP! and other enemy agents in our midst, whilst it supports Sydney shock-jocks in denouncing un-Australian activity’.

    TRUTH IS IN THE MOTIVE AND THE OUTCOME – So here we are and liberals got what they want, Bennelong! And a Labor Parliamentarian as bonus, a thorn in the corporate fabric of US capitalist interests, and all when the government was almost certain to sink to the bottom of abyss, as Turnbull himself said if Keneally gets in, Shorten would be perilously close to PM, now wouldn’t that sound like a CRIME!

    CRIME NOT DEMOCRACY – OUCH!

  15. David Tyler

    Kaye, Christian Porter bound to get the nod for AG. Buggered up the same job in WA. As he did the treasurer’s gig. Anything to get him away from welfare. Remember when as treasurer of Western Australia, he argued that unemployed people should face cuts to their welfare benefits if they refused to move interstate (to Western Australia) for work?
    “If you are unemployed in Wollongong, is there any repercussion whatsoever for not taking up a job or even trying to take up a job in WA?”
    Flash of genius – almost worthy of Brandis.

  16. Kaye Lee

    Porter’s father was Charles “Chilla” Porter, who during the 1970s and 1980s was director of Western Australia’s Liberal Party. His grandfather, Sir Charles Robert Porter, was a Queensland Liberal state MP between 1966 and 1980 and served in the ministry of Joh Bjelke-Petersen.

    Cash is the daughter of former Western Australian state MP, Minister and President of the Legislative Council, the Hon George Cash

    These dynasties are a worry. Seems to me they groom themselves from birth to suck on the public teat. The very inadequate Georgina Downer is also hoping to take up the reins via appearances on the media home of the IPA, “our” ABC.

  17. Kevin Arnold

    Back in the 50s and early 60s in Newcastle, the only way to get any left wing literature was either the miner’s Common Cause or the Communist Party bookshop. Both were in Union Street a block away from each other.
    If you went to the bookshop you were told very quickly that your picture was being taken from the building across the road. Now I would not know if this was true or not but we believed it. This came to mind when Sam Dastyari got himself in so much trouble recently. No matter if you are guilty of anything, and in those days we were far from being terrorists in the making, or just working class kids looking for a cause, if you are not on the side of the establishment assume they are watching. Also remember that Labor is not the natural government for Australia and has to be whiter than white. Good Labor governments do not last long and from my experience they get brought down by people who either don’t know or are too stupid to appreciate this fact.

  18. Jeanne Hart

    I couldn’t agree more Kaye, listening to this bi product of Alexander Downer on ‘our abc’ is infuriating. The ipa has taken over the lnp.

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