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What hope have we got when the rorters make the rules?

Bridget McKenzie’s blatant misuse of public money for political purposes should surprise no-one. We have been enabling this behaviour for a long time.

That the excuse is that “no rules were broken” shows just how utterly corrupt the people who make the rules have become.

Even if McKenzie is demoted, it is rarely an impediment.

Look at Stuart Robert, briefly stood down for pretending to represent the government on a private trip to China with a fellow investor and Liberal party donor when he went to secure a mining deal.

Robert has had a plethora of shady dealings aside from that trip – Rolex watches, internet bills, local government elections, tour guide to Israel, elderly parents unaware they were directors of his company, connection to business getting government contracts – the list is seemingly endless, yet Scotty From Marketing promoted him to a senior portfolio regardless as a reward for being his numbers man.

After Jamie Briggs was stood down for sexually harassing a public servant and later sharing her photo, he lost the next election. Not to worry – he was given a job as a director for the government-owned Moorebank Intermodal Company Limited.

In fact, it was reported in 2017 that nine of the fifteen Liberal MPs who lost their seats at the 2016 election had since been handed well-paid government jobs.

Arthur “I can’t recall” Sinodinis stood down during the ICAC hearings, but has now tagged dumped Treasurer Joe “cigar” Hockey for the plum posting of US Ambassador.

Angus Taylor must be thanking the cosmos for Bridget’s bungling but #watergate, #grassgate and #clovergate haven’t gone away. He nevertheless enjoys the confidence of our PM, Scotty From Marketing.

That’s the same PM who interceded to make sure valued-member Craig Kelly remained in government against the wishes of local preselectors and despite everybody except Rowan Dean knowing the guy is a fruitloop.

Sussan Ley was demoted for rorting expenses – all is now forgiven as they need more “skirts” on the front bench.

George Christensen, having spent the majority of his time over the last few years consorting in ‘adult’ clubs in the Philippines, just pays back the money he misspent on domestic flights and comcars to pursue his passion. Well, that’s ok then.

Leaks from J Edgar Tuber’s office to the Murdoch rags, or from veteran union-basher Michaelia Cash to the tv camera crews, are no problem, but whoever leaked that colour-coded sports rort evidence will be hunted down.

Most of us would get sacked if we turned up to work drunk, or used the excuse of sorry I was pissed and fell asleep for missing an important meeting. In parliament, you end up leader of your party – I’m looking at you Tony and Bananababy. They even ask in surveys about political leaders, who would you rather have a beer with, and we are barraged with photos of politicians vying for the title.

(As an aside, one wonders if the new gasfields to be opened up in NSW or the inland rail will increase the value of Bananababy’s ‘farm’ in the Piliga.)

The decline in party membership has made branch-stacking easy as the Mormons in Victoria displayed. The IPA provides a steady stream of aspiring youngish political hopefuls to the ABC panel shows and maybe to Sky too – I don’t bother watching that trash.

The quality of people entering politics, particularly on the conservative side, has plummeted. We are lumbered with inadequate hacks only interested in the gravy train and, as such, willing to do whatever it takes to keep their noses in the trough.

Public servants have been replaced by political staffers as advisers.  These staffers often go on to become MPs themselves – it’s a career path where rocking the boat is not recommended.  Consultants provide the answers the government wants. Lobbyists pay for access and dictate policy.

And the whole time this rorting has been getting further and further entrenched, our ability to do anything about it, is being eroded.

We can’t strike. We can’t protest. We can’t find out (or publish) the truth despite having freedom of information laws.

We can’t change the rules about politicians’ expense claims, or political donations, or election funding and spending.

When we demand a corruption watchdog, we are offered something that would have no power to investigate any of the “within the rules” wrongdoing that has become entrenched.

The Auditor-General even found that the Liberal Party’s money-laundering scheme, Parakeelia, which funnels millions of dollars of public money directly to the Liberal party coffers, was not in breach of electoral and parliamentary rules.

Deregulation, privatisation and ‘flexible workplaces’ have given a green light to businesses to reap profits at the expense of services, workers, and the environment

What hope have we got when the rorters make the rules?

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50 comments

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  1. Kim Kucera

    Right on the money again, Kaye Lee!

  2. crypt0

    When the rorters make the rules, and the MSM run protection for them, and the electors are sufficiently unable to think for themselves to throw this lot out at the “climate change election” … well … it’s gotta be limited, not to put too fine a point on it.

  3. New England Cocky

    There is local gossip that Barnyard may soon be for the long paddock as a local Mayor appears to have been appointed before official pre-selection for his handling of the Armidale “water crisis” where Armidale drinking water is alleged to have been pumped into the Guyra Tomato Farm overnight to maintain the profits for foreign shareholders while ratepayers are held on Level 5 Water Restrictions.

  4. Kaye Lee

    The thing that really annoys the tripe out of me is that the government thinks that announcing things fixes our problems. Every day we are subjected to a press conference announcing tuppence ha’penny to save the world. Or another inquiry, or the appointment of another special envoy or some such title.

    It is their job to invest our money where it is needed. Must we endure the photos and nodding heads and touring entourage every time they do so? Every electorate has a local member. How about letting them inform the community? Think of the emissions reduction if you left it to them and a media release.

    How about building an accommodation wing at parliament house? If they choose not to stay there ok, stay where you like at your own expense – at least we wouldn’t be paying for their investment properties. How about making parliament house an alcohol free zone like other workplaces and public spaces?

    How about showing integrity rather than looking for loopholes to get away with whatever you can?

    How about even living up to the standards we expect from our rugby league players? Is that too much? Lord knows we pay for enough minders for you that you should be able to behave appropriately.

    Stop wasting money on videos and advertising trying to hide the fact that all you ever do is announce.

  5. Phil Pryor

    Morons, thieves, pisspots, whores, sluts, con men and women, swindlers, agents for crooks, no, it’s not society or even any city, it’s the Government!! Toss in the bonsai adolfs, the minimussolinis, the perverted Perons, the nasty Napoleons, the Crooked Capones, and, we have on display the worst possible lot of representatives who fail to represent, unless it is their own greed, selfishness, ego, vanity, pose.

  6. Harry Lime

    Kaye Lee
    We hound the bastards out of Office.Their sins are piling up,something will give,there will be one lie too many.

  7. David Evans

    Has there ever been a more corrupt mob of a..holes in ANY “government” in Australia?… Anybody?

  8. Brad Black

    Kaye Lee, your well written litany of highly questionable dealings within the government rabble (non exhaustive I would have thought), one that’ll be remembered as the worst in the history of this country, marginally pipping tony the idiot’s, gives the opposition a reasonably good platform for an assault on government credibility as we approach the next election. They might even adopt a LNP strategy of using a 3 word slogan or 2. ‘Stop corruption now’ for instance. Hopefully it’s not a missed opportunity.

  9. whatever

    Anyone else see the “Massive Green Energy Deal” headlines?
    The Federal Govt. is going to allow huge NSW gas fracking ventures, mainly around the Narrabri district.
    Hey!!! That’s where Barnaby Joyce made some real-estate acquisitions in recent years.

  10. Presser#1

    Similar situations happening somewhere else in the world are usually labeled ‘Crony Capitalism’ – even by our own mainstream media. Is it different when it’s us? I dont think so.

  11. Lambchop Simnel

    Acccurate post, unfortunately.

    Behold, the two speed economy, where the TNCs get away with colossal murder re dodged tax and unpaid royalties and an entire nation is coopted regardless of cost for the myopic, narcissistic benefit of a few in the energy and mining and other resources sectors and their international allies; that is at one end, with shabby deals seeing defence and procurements as targets for tens of $billions worth of bodgy secretive deals with huge TNC’s offshore.

    But no worries. slashed social and material infrastructure spending will cover the move to offshore havens.

    Then you get, locally, crude bludging conservative politicians, bureaucrats and capitalists- the local kleptocracy- at the other end,it hoards of polite consultant parasites, while the working poor and welfare claimants are gouged by schoolyard bullies.

  12. Geoff Andrews

    One can’t blame the Hon Ms McKenzie but one can blame Labor.
    The Liberals knew they were in for a flogging last election; even THEIR polling said so. There was $100 million wisely, soberly and thoughtfully sloshing around looking for a bank balance or two and they knew that when Labor came to power they would immediately waste it on clubs that nobody in their right mind would want to join because of the shitty facilities AND it meant that it would be at least three years before the Toorak Polo Club’s swimming pool could be heated.
    The money just had to be spent on something “decent”.
    Also, Labor would have to budget for another $100 million, conveniently raising “debt & deficit disaster” howls of derision.
    It’s a win win move

  13. Kronomex

    LNP, Robber Barons Extraordinaire Co. Inc.

  14. Lambchop Simnel

    Geoff Andrews, that is microscopically close what it has been really about with Bridgetgate.

    Caught out by an unpredicted weather change re their miserable and greedy scorched earth policies…serves some of the bastards right.

  15. Barry Thompson.

    An accommodation wing at parliament house ! Christ Kaye Lee can you imagine the midnight manoeuvres. Don’t encourage the buggers to inbreed.
    I agree though, it isn’t a bad idea. Should return a saving very quickly considering how they rort their accommodation allowance.

  16. John lord

    and maybe to Sky too – I don’t bother watching that trash. You should. Seeing is believing.

  17. DrakeN

    Thank you once more Kaye.

    Your frequent aggregations of facts and figures help to clear the red cloud of rage which contributes to my often irrational hatred of so much of that which passes for National governance.

    “Revenge is a dish best served cold” is also applicable to political debate and I am often guilty of displaying more anger than I am of cool, collected and factual debate.

    How I wish for a sane, equitable, kind and generous society lead by benign, rational and well informed lawmakers and administrators.

    There is no value in praying for such, since the worst offenders seem to be the ‘servants of God’.

    I guess that I will go to my death thoroughly disappointed and disillusioned.

  18. LambsFry Simplex.

    Now it transpires that some of Bridget’s grants were handed out 6 months AFTER the close of applications.

    To emergency cases in poor places?

    Do pigs fly?

  19. LambsFry Simplex.

    Next step is air.

    User pays for oxygen masks.

  20. Lambchop Simnel

    whoops..should be in the water column.

  21. Kaye Lee

    Outgoing Sport Australia Chief Executive Kate Palmer raised concerns about the grants process before her contract was discontinued last year.

  22. Kathryn

    The MILLION DOLLAR QUESTION is this: Will the Murdoch-manipulated idiots who actually VOTED for this pack of rampaging, self-serving, paedophile-protecting, soulless thieves, liars and conniving rorters REMEMBER just how BAD, how CORRUPT, how HYPOCRITICAL and the level of unspeakable scorn and sneering contempt the LNP have for ordinary Australians – will they REMEMBER all of this when the NEXT election rolls around or will they, once again, push the worst, most unspeakably corrupt, non-achieving, environmental vandals, elitists and heartless psychopaths in living memory across the electoral line?

    You can NEVER UNDER-ESTIMATE the irrational lunacy of the Australian voting public! Not a day goes by that we are not INUNDATED with the latest Lieberal scandal, the latest rort, the latest criminal incident of fraudulent misappropriation of taxpayer funds, the relentless lies, the staggering hypocrisy, the fact that the LNP have caused Australia to become an international laughing stock, despised and condemned around the world for our criminal, illegal maltreatment of legal asylum seekers and our government’s insane, reckless, climate-change-denying idiocy! At this stage, I am so ashamed to be an Australian and totally lost for words!

  23. Matters Not

    Re Kate Palmer and:

    her contract was discontinued last year

    Sounds like she was sacked. Yet the SMH has her:

    electing not to seek to renew her contract as chief executive of Sport Australia.

    While this particular reality is probably a very minor matter, seems to me that the language used both effects and affects the meanings that are subsequently given. And of course both of the above could be ‘true’ (factual and all that). So is that a problem?

    https://www.smh.com.au/sport/kate-palmer-steps-down-as-ceo-of-sport-australia-20191028-p53548.html

  24. RosemaryJ36

    Civil disobedience is the only weapon we have. Join Extinction Rebellion!

  25. wam

    Great read, Kaye!
    The Kerr intervention was a cunning plan accomplished by kerr’s curs who are now the smirko rorters.
    Sadly labor has no stomach for inciting the commercial media or the autocuists would be scrabbling for any details to eliminate smirko’s smirk. With silly Sam and Karl baby, each speculating their arses off every morning .

    ps lord sorry for the error in arithmetic at your last causerie it was a lie caused in haste. The life span of the year of the horse was 68 so we snakes probably just less so we are only 11 years over the projected lifespan.
    pps we only have had 4 clp federal pollies one from a great family and a nice block he got Norfolk, a twit who sat behind the rabbott wearing an inane grin she got Xmas island (this is in Snowden’s electorate and he was not in the loop of the recent quarantine efforts but Natasha was and, as expected made no effort to include warren but rubbed it in.
    ppps Kathryn the labor voters who deserted were frightened of jobs and the economy and that was not just Rupert’s editors. The morning shows and the ABC was full of it day after day pictures of Bobby’s van and the slogan labor and the green oops sorry Kaye.

  26. corvusboreus

    A tendency towards intellectual indolence leaves strayans ripe for soaking up misinformation.
    This morning I opened the local paper, and which is now largely owned by Rupert.
    I saw that the letters page contained the usual gish-gallops of factually challenged mouth breathers claiming that the oceans are not rising, and I pondered the prevalence of such basic ignorance in what is supposed to be the ‘age of information’.
    Then I turned the page and there it was.
    An entire page devoted to the opinions of serial liar and racist agitator andrew bolt.
    Today I shall be calling the paper to lodge strong grievance and inform them that, since they are abandoning any attempt at factual credibility, their putrid product is no longer welcome or wanted, and today I shall be painting and erecting a sign for my front yard to notify the delivery-person of my choice to forgo my dose of propaganda. .
    Since Murdoch syndicates his lies and his evil minions all screech from the same shill sheet, I suspect that other households across the nation will wake to find their once-local rags have been similarly contaminated with bolt’s toxic bile.

    As our biosphere fractures and the climate tips towards runaway disaster, it is sickening to be reminded of the sheer amount of corporate resource being actively deployed to fuel the flames of stoopid.

  27. Kaye Lee

    MN,

    From what I can gather, there may have been tension. There was a review underway into Sports Australia by a previous Liberal Sports Minister. Palmer’s boss had been focusing on elite athletes. She wanted to focus on increasing participation. She “raised concerns” about the sports grant program – possibly that did not sit well with the minister.

    She ‘chose’ to not seek to renew her contract. I speculate that the reaction to her concerns may well have contributed to that decision.

  28. PeterF

    Did you hear Gladys say that there would be “more gas for(business) ……. and IMPORT facilities at Newcastle and ….. “?

    Yes, that is what she said -in spite of all the damage they will do to the Liverpool plains and the Pilliga, THEY WILL CREATE FACILITIES TO IMPORT GAS.

    Read the fine print. You can bet that there is a great financial benefit for their MATES hidden in the detail, apart from the more obvious ones.

    I despair……. perhaps it is the heat.

  29. Pingback: What hope have we got when the rorters make the rules? #newsoz.org #auspol - News Oz

  30. Terence Mills

    Interesting to see that the Murdoch approach to this rorting [sports grants] is to attack the messenger. In this case their target is Mark Dreyfus, Shadow Attorney General who initially raised the matter of the ‘novelty’ cheque being presented by candidate for Mayo Georgina Downer to a bowls club. His simple question was
    ” how can a candidate who has not been elected be given government funds to distribute”. That is where the matter started and since then it has grown like Bridget.

    On sky-after-dark, they are attacking Dreyfus, they say he ‘has form’ because he was leading the charge to uncover the truth about the forged documents used by Angus Taylor to attack Clover Moore : Dreyfus referred the matter initially to the NSW police who have now referred the matter to the AFP.

    So, if you looking for the culprit, according to Murdoch Media it’s Mark Drefus or is it the Murdoch spin machine and their fake news ?

  31. Kaye Lee

    Peter van Onselen
    @vanOnselenP

    This is seriously their concern? Not that they rorted community sporting grants. Not that no one has been held accountable. Not that worthy applicants missed out. Their concern is who leaked it. Unbelievable… #auspol

    https://twitter.com/vanOnselenP/status/1222118525394776064

  32. paul walter

    Peter F, that was some comment.

    God, these people lie in their sleep.

    Interesting to watch Morrison at the presser re Xmas Island. He is at one side to Payne, who is doing much talking. Morrison’s face looks like it has been hit by a brick, perhaps as part of the aftermath the Van Onselen/Channel 10 revelations in the wake of the press club liefest.

    I tried to force myself to listen, but the mere sight of them nauseates and angers me, so I could only watch the expressions and that only for a short time.

  33. paul walter

    What do you know. You can get kicked off Twitter as well. They kicked me off for referring to possible toxic effects of bushfire smoke on Canberra politicians at Lenore Taylor.

    Welcome to Das Reich?

  34. corvusboreus

    Out of curiosity….
    Did anyone else find that their weekend ‘local’ paper had suddenly sprouted an entire page devoted to the divisive and dishonest opinions of convicted racist and serial liar andrew bolt?
    If not, then I am relieved to hear that the sudden unwelcome insertion of bolt-bile into the local ‘newspaper’ is just a localised abheration rather than (as I suspect) the result of a nationwide directive from newscorpse head office.
    If so, what then isn’t anyone else here at least slightly concerned by this sudden saturation of divisive misinformation at the most basic grass roots level?

  35. LambsFry Simplex.

    They have to shore up a failed regime.

    Laura Tingle at the ABC was as disappointing

  36. corvusboreus

    To clarify, that was a specific question requesting factual information, not an invitation for expressions of opinion.
    Repeat, did anyone else find their weekend local newspaper has suddenly started syndicating andrew bolt’s opinion page?

  37. Kaye Lee

    cb,

    I haven’t seen a local paper but there was this story from a few years ago.

    News Corp has completed its purchase of APN News & Media’s regional newspapers portfolio.

    The deal sees 12 daily newspapers, 60 community titles and 30 websites based in regional Queensland and northern New South Wales shift into the hands of News Corp. The titles include the likes of The Sunshine Coast Daily, The Toowoomba Chronicle, The Daily Mercury in Mackay, The Warwick Daily news, the Morning Bulletin Rockhampton and the Tweed Daily News.

  38. johno

    I never buy newspapers. Use my mum’s old papers to light the fire etc. Surely many newspaper sales are diminishing to the point of unviable.

  39. Lambchop Simcard

    I think a very naive Josephine Cashman will rue the day she went on Andrew Bolt’s Show Corvusboreus!

  40. Kaye Lee

    I don’t understand the Cashman thing. She was doing some good work apparently. Why go off on this ridiculous witch hunt that seems like a very personal beef for no reason? Why hang with Andrew Bolt whose form on this shows what an ill-informed idiot he is?

  41. corvusboreus

    Kaye Lee,
    My area’s own newspaper (Coffs Advocate) was one of those bought out by newscorp.
    Hence my general query for reliable information as to whether any/all of the other APN regional papers you mentioned had simultaneously suffered similar editorial changes.
    As yet I remain ignorant.

    Repeat again, did anyone else (particularly in north NSW and regional Qld) suddenly get a dose of andrew bolt in their weekend local paper?

  42. Terence Mills

    Kaye, not to forget the Cairns Post : in our local newsagency we only have available the Cairns Post, the Australian and Courier Mail all Newscorp publications and all with the same editorial spin.

    Baffling that Josephine Cashman has taken up the role of a professional aboriginal even though her father was white – no doubting that she like many others has some aboriginal heritage but she denies that to Bruce Pascoe and seems to be suggesting that a national DNA database of aboriginality be set up.

    It now seems that Large tracts of text from a letter supposedly written by a Yolgnu Elder Terry Yumbulul and sent to Andrew Bolt by Cashman were actually lifted from other documents available online.

    Mr Yumbulul said that whilst he was contacted by Cashman regarding elements contained in the letter published by Bolt, he did not author the letter and was not responsible for the alleged section plagiarized from academic papers.

    Very strange !

    https://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/2020/jan/28/josephine-cashman-sacked-from-indigenous-advisory-body-after-letter-published-by-andrew-bolt

  43. corvusboreus

    So I can infer that the broad answer to my simple question is a general mix of don’t know and don’t really care.
    Thanks to Kaye Lee for at least having a go at providing some kind of factual answer.

  44. Lambchop Simcard

    Kaye I don’t know if she was doing good work or not.Though going the short route via the Bolt show is a bad move as we all know his
    predisposition.The moral of the story is fight your own battles on your own.

  45. Kaye Lee

    cb,

    I googled the Coffs Advocate to get an Andrew Bolt headline then googled that headline, “The truth on climate change that warmists continue to dodge”, to answer your question. The article is paywalled but you can see from the search result that his crap is being shared far and wide..

    https://www.google.com/search?q=THE+TRUTH+ON+CLIMATE+CHANGE+THAT+WARMISTS+CONTINUE+TO+DODGE&rlz=1C1CHBF_en-GBAU709AU710&oq=THE+TRUTH+ON+CLIMATE+CHANGE+THAT+WARMISTS+CONTINUE+TO+DODGE&aqs=chrome

  46. corvusboreus

    Kaye Lee,
    Thank you.
    So, as I suspected, bolt’s crap is now being peddled by the once local newspapers that have been bought out by newscorp.
    I shall be making official complaint to the Advocate office tomorrow and informing them that I will be boycotting their product, as well as actively encouraging others to do so.
    It may achieve three-fifths of phuqall, but I do not think we should passively permit local news services to be perverted by the prostituded opinions of a climate science denying racist from Melbourne.

    Ps, the scientist that blot willfully misquoted has already previously clarified his exact remarks, but I wouldn’t expect a lying arsehole like andrew bolt to acknowledge any factual corrections unless he was legally compelled to do so.

  47. Kaye Lee

    cb,

    I have decided that I will no longer hold my tongue with friends and family. I am tired of not saying things because it might upset them or cause an argument. I have ignored things that have upset me for years. Let’s compare facts is now my approach. All of a sudden no-one wants to talk about it. Go figure.

    Perhaps your complaint should go to people who advertise with your local paper. Ask them do they endorse the local paper’s stance?

  48. corvusboreus

    Kaye Lee,
    Approaching regular advertisers will be amongst my next steps.
    First up is to notify the paper’s management of my intended actions and the reason behind them: namely that I expect my local paper to accurately cover local news, not peddle the socially divisive and anti-scientific rants of a serial liar for hire from Victoria.

  49. Phil

    I corresponded with the editor of a local rag where I live in Perth and his honesty to my own comments was breath taking. He din’t deny the bias in his paper and indeed, didn’t deny the propaganda value for his beloved coalition. His reply to me was, ” Buy your own paper and you too can put in it anything you like.” Simple really.

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