Australia's totalitarian Gillard urged to 'go harder' at media

(image Pickering Post)

UPDATE: Julie Bishop, former managing partner of the Perth office of national law firm Clayton Utz, believes Gillard’s conduct is a serious breach of professional or ethical conduct:

“If a partner didn’t open a file for work they were doing for a client with whom they had an intimate relationship, and then had no reasonable explanation for it, that would be viewed very seriously within a law firm.

“You have to have a file number, so you have to open a file so that other partners can see what work is being done.

“It would give the impression that there is something to hide and partners would view that very dimly.” (source)

Cue Gillard’s cracked record response, no doubt: I’ve dealt with this all before and I’ve done nothing wrong.

It’s wearing very, very thin, Julia.

Just a reminder that when you read the following, it’s 21st century Australia we’re in, not 1970s Soviet Union. The implications for press freedom (which includes the right for blogs such as this to publish views which challenge the government position) are significant.

Australia’s Prime Minister Julia Gillard is floundering amidst allegations regarding her conduct as a lawyer in the mid-1990s, in particular the setting up of an association which was used – allegedly – to misappropriate union funds.

The Australian and talkback hosts are on the trail, and more of the media is becoming alerted to the story, yet instead of coming clean about it and making a statement, Gillard’s first instinct, and that of her party, is to deny everything, say nothing and instead shut down the legitimate questions by “regulating” the media (i.e. suppressing dissent and only allowing acceptable views to be printed – acceptable to Labor, Gillard and the Left, of course). The mark of a true totalitarian.

The hypocrisy is breathtaking. If this was a Labor opposition making the same claims of a Coalition Prime Minister, the ABC and Fairfax would be screaming from the rooftops, but naturally, because it involves their mates, Labor, both of those organisations have been virtually silent on the issue.

JULIA Gillard has lashed out at her online accusers over the circumstances of her departure from law firm Slater & Gordon in the mid-1990s, as her caucus colleagues urged her to “take the gloves off” in a fight with the press.

The Prime Minister took aim at news coverage of her personal life and blasted internet blogs for their “gender-based” attacks on her leadership, amid increasing scrutiny of her link to a disgraced union official and her departure from Slater & Gordon in the mid-1990s.

In a heated discussion within the Labor caucus, MPs urged backbencher John Murphy to “go harder” as he attacked News Limited, publisher of The Australian, over its coverage of the government.

Ms Gillard responded by vowing to proceed with media reforms by the end of the year, keeping the threat of regulation hanging over the sector.

The remarks came as Tony Abbott said the circumstances of Ms Gillard’s departure from Slater & Gordon were the subject of “legitimate media interest” and the Coalition would give her “every opportunity” to make a statement on the matter to parliament.

Ms Gillard has refused to discuss claims by two former Slater & Gordon partners that she left the firm in 1995 after an internal investigation into her dealings with her then boyfriend, Bruce Wilson, a former Australian Workers Union boss who was later accused of corruption. (source)

Janet Albrechtsen asks Gillard some hard questions:

PRIME Minister, you once said News Limited had hard questions to answer. When pressed, you couldn’t elaborate. Allow me to elaborate on some questions for you. Simply repeating that you have answered questions previously is a political tactic that treats voters as stupid. But we are not. You may have answered other questions long ago. But new information has raised new questions.

On ABC1’s Q&A on Monday night, Graham Richardson said you don’t get the best advice from your staffers but the buck stops with you. He said that you have shown a lack of sound political judgment in the way you have dealt with this issue to date. Please reconsider your strategy. Surely you don’t believe that this is simply the work of feral bloggers? To be sure, a scurrilous online campaign is being waged. But completely separately, important issues are being raised by serious people in serious places. You might not like it but democracy depends on an intellectually curious media. (source)

The Australian‘s editorial is also on the same subject:

 On Sunday, Ms Gillard attacked our editor-at-large, Paul Kelly, arguably the nation’s most eminent political journalist, because he dared to follow up allegations made through this newspaper by former Slater & Gordon partner Nick Styant-Browne. “The central point was that the partner alleged you had to resign because of this issue,” said Kelly. “Is that correct or not?” “Look, Paul,” Ms Gillard responded, “I did resign from Slater & Gordon, that’s a matter of public record. I made the decision to do that. I mean, join the dots for me, Paul. What matters about this today for Australia and me being Prime Minister? Just articulate that … I did nothing wrong.”

While Ms Gillard dodges the question, Thomas has now confirmed through a second senior partner at the time, Peter Gordon, that the firm considered “terminating” Ms Gillard’s employment over her handling of the AWU matters before accepting her resignation. Mr Gordon and Mr Styant-Browne are not “birthers” – they are experienced lawyers who have been cautious and deliberate about their statements.

At the heart of this matter is the allegation Ms Gillard, while a salaried partner, carried out undeclared legal work for her then boyfriend and AWU boss Bruce Wilson and his bagman, AWU official Ralph Blewitt. This included establishing an entity named the AWU Workplace Reform Association – later revealed to have received hundreds of thousands of dollars from companies that were then used by Mr Wilson and Mr Blewitt for private purposes, including buying a house in Melbourne’s Fitzroy. Ms Gillard attended the auction with Mr Wilson, who moved into the house. Mr Wilson and Mr Blewitt later sold the property, keeping the proceeds.

And there’s plenty more. Rather than accept that a free press is one of the fundamental features of an open democracy, and difficult questions asked of a prime minister must be answered, the Left’s response is always to regulate and control the media, for their own selfish ends.

Comments

  1. S&G will never tell an obvious lie as that will then result in an investigation into fraud and allegations of misconduct on the part of the entire firm. This will result in expulsion from the Bar association, criminal charges and the possibility that all work carried out by them may be reviewed for additional “questionable” actions! Not having studied law, but being involved in a fraud investigation [as an investigator], all the interviews were taped and transcribed so that the facts could be signed off as being true and correct. No signing off on an affidavit of fact is in itself a criminal offense under the Evidence and Oaths Act!

    • The people get the Government and Prime Minister they deserve . Most recent opinion polls say that Labor’s and the Prime Minister’s approval ratings are going up.

  2. Ken Ward via Facebook says:

    Sounds like your leader is even worse than obama, so far.

  3. “gender-based” attacks – how lame!
    Try “dishonesty and corruption based” .
    For some reason I don’t remember Margaret Thatcher trying to play the victim card like that.
    If the government wants to have the same power to muzzle free speech as the old communist regimes had (and they do want it) then they are going to have to have the balls to adopt the same strategies of midnight disappearances, executions and gulags. The fact is they don’t have the nerve and they have no chance of success.
    So they can make whatever laws they like but eventually when it comes down to it they cannot stop people saying and blogging what they like.
    It is very instructive to examine the mindset of these people however. I always wondered how the communist regimes managed to get people to do their dirty work and who would give such orders to have people detained for speaking their mind.
    I assumed there must be something odd about East German or Soviet culture but now it is obvious that the kind of arrogance needed to be able to tell the general public what is good for them is present in all cultures and such people happily take control if not opposed.
    Can’t wait for the next election.

  4. Actually Ken the parallels are interesting. On almost all policies they have the same cluelessness. Immigration, tax, carbon etc.

  5. Betty Whiffin says:

    Men and women founght and died that this country would be a democratic and free country. Now people and media are being threatened which leads one to believe that not only is dishonesty at play but the very freedom that these men and women fought for is long forgotten. Journalists have lost their jobs, denied interviews on air and threatened as with Kernohan who spoke up against this fraud. Just tell the truth Prime Minister in an affdavit instead of “I have done nothing wrong” without any expanation. It does seem she did not file the incident which she should have done and resigned herself as she knew Slater & Gordon would ask her to leave.

  6. Chickens coming home to roost, if you want to tell fibs you sure as hell need an exceptional memory.

  7. Make a great movie!

  8. If you type “Gilliard” into the search area of ABCs web you get an interesting result.

  9. To right glen

  10. Confusious says:

    Reminds me of my youth wasted whilst vegetating behind Iron Curtain.
    Leftwing Lawyers and Ultra Left Fabian Socialists usurped power by deceipt and with assitance of few sell out rats.
    It looks like that the pres censorship will soon be followed by “One Party Peoples Democracy” modelled on North Korea!
    Australians must be the laughing stock of the world by allowing this bunch of welsh, scottish and malaysian Marxist Leninists to grab power.

  11. This woman is an embarrasment to all Australians.

  12. Simon Colwell says:

    Simon, while I don’t disagree with anything written above I can’t help but wonder if a climate change blog is the right place to be airing such opinions ie by going off topic and attacking the PM on a non-climate related issue do you run the risk of painting yourself as partial to one side of politics, which in turn could lead to all your future attacks on climate change madness being dismissed as merely the utterings of someone who is naturally against Labor anyway and is attacking Labor’s climate policies not because they are wrong but because you are against Labor’s policies in general. Should such a scenario develop you run the risk of diminishing the efficacy of your genuine rebuttals of the government’s climate change policies.

    [REPLY – I agree in principle, however, this issue relates to free speech and therefore impacts on the climate debate directly, and on this blog. Hence I believe this story is relevant.]

  13. David Rosser-Owen via Facebook says:

    And to think this awful harridan’s family originated in Swansea.

  14. Colin S Tonks via Facebook says:

    She has to go and now!

  15. Time to send her on a walkabout!!!

  16. She’s Jodie foster.lol

  17. http://www.thevinnyeastwoodshow.com/uploads/1/3/1/2/1312301/4542787_orig.jpg download this picture and plaster it everywhere! There’s no place like home, ditch the witch!

  18. David John Abbott via Facebook says:

    I wonder how many people, who voted for Gillard because she would be the first female Australian Prime Minister, are now aware of what a mistake that was. If not they will most likely vote for her again for all the wrong reasons again.

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