Wednesday, 2 December 2009

Media wrap - Hardly an explanation from a press which got the leadership contest so wrong


Leadership - federal

Abbott's climate poll dare – Tony Abbott will steer the Liberal Party back to its conservative roots with a 2010 election campaign portraying Kevin Rudd as a Whitlamesque big spender whose climate change policies will smash Australian jobs – The Australian

The Tony Abbott scare campaign begins – Christian Kerr writes in The Australian  that Tony Abbott knows all about scare campaigns. He had to deal with one of the toughest and longest of them all. Mr Abbott was John Hewson's press secretary when Fightback turned into a fight to the death between the opposition leader and Paul Keating, and when the Liberals lost the unloseable election of 1993. He hopes a scare campaign of his own on the emissions trading scheme might make what looks like an unwinnable election for the opposition at least less of a blow.

Abbott dives into action – The scene is set for a climate change election after the Liberals elected Tony Abbott as leader and immediately set about killing off the emissions trading scheme Malcolm Turnbull negotiated with Labor – Sydney Morning Herald

Abbott win dooms the ETS – The Liberals are poised to vote down the emissions trading legislation today, giving the Government a trigger for a possible early poll, after they shifted decisively to the right yesterday with the election of Tony Abbott as leader – Melbourne Age

Liberals vow to unite behind new leader Tony Abbott – The Liberal party is desperately vowing to put forward a united front and fall in behind Tony Abbott as the new Liberal leader, who has vowed to oppose the Rudd Government's emissions trading scheme and fight the Government on economic management and range of other issues – The Australian

Barnaby Joyce relishes his attack role – The  Nationals have declared the Coalition is well in the race to win next year's federal election after being liberated in a policy sense by Tony Abbott's election as Liberal Party leader – The Australian

Judge me on the future, forgive my mistakes – Tony Abbott has begun his leadership of the Coalition with a plea to voters to judge him on his future record as Opposition Leader rather than on his reputation as a political hard man and right-wing ideologue – The Australian

Malcolm Turnbull takes time to rethink his future – Malcolm Turnbull will move to the back bench and spend the Christmas break considering his future, but he will not force a by-election in his Sydney seat of Wentworth. Emerging calm and still upbeat after his narrow defeat in yesterday's Liberal leadership spill, Mr Turnbull vowed not to quit before the next election – The Australian

Julie Bishop keeps job continuity as deputy leader – Despite her best endeavours, Julie Bishop has become the Liberals' great survivor. The party has had three leaders in less than two years, but Ms Bishop, as deputy, remains the one constant. Peter Dutton was touted as a new deputy, but it was not to be. The position never even went to a vote – The Australian

I'm not afraid of an early election, says Tony Abbott – Liberal leader Tony Abbott vowed last night to win a likely election by tackling the Government over broken promises, rising rates and wasted money. Almost certainly facing an early poll after his one-vote victory effectively killed off the Emissions Trading Scheme, he levelled his opening campaign shots at the Prime Minister and said: "It will be a clean contest, but where I think that Kevin Rudd deserves to have his follies and fatuities exposed, I will do it." – Sydney Daily Telegraph

Inside the 50 minutes that rocked the Liberal Party – A  middle ear virus called labrynthitis and an informal vote cost Malcolm Turnbull his leadership yesterday – Sydney Daily Telegraph

ETS doomed as new leader Tony Abbott starts a fight – Tony Abbott has vowed to muscle up on Kevin Rudd, saying he can win next year's federal election by turning the heat on the Labor Government. Mr Abbott set his sights on the Prime Minister within hours of his stunning victory in yesterday's Liberal Party leadership showdown. But Labor hit back at the former amateur boxer with a blunt advertising campaign which signals a new intensity in federal politics – Brisbane Courier Mail

Malcom Turnbull steps back, Joe Hockey stands tall, Tony Abbott wins all – Malcolm Turnbull is keeping his options open after being dumped as Liberal leader. The other loser in the contest, Joe Hockey, was also keeping his own counsel. He declined to say if he wanted to continue in his role as treasury spokesman – Melbourne Herald Sun

Tony Abbott dares Prime Minister to early poll – Hardline new Opposition Leader Tony Abbott has dared the Prime Minister, Kevin Rudd, to let Australians decide on emissions trading. The show of bravado has sparked the genuine prospect of a double dissolution election – Adelaide Advertiser

Even the new leader seemed surprised by his win -  writes David Marr in the Sydney Morning Herald recounting the days events in Canberra.

Forgive my sins and let me start anew, leader saysSydney Morning Herald on the new leader’s first press conference.

Leadership state

Nathan Rees on borrowed time as Premier – State Labor Party bosses are believed to have privately withdrawn support for Premier Nathan Rees, the final sign that his days may be numbered. Senior Labor figures said both Labor Party secretary Matt Thistlethwaite and assistant secretary Luke Foley have told them they would support a new leader if MPs moved against Mr Rees – Sydney Daily Telegraph

Roozendaal's job was threatened, say sources – The NSW Treasurer, Eric Roozendaal, cancelled a tilt for the premiership yesterday after his job was threatened by the Premier's chief of staff, Graeme Wedderburn, Labor sources say – Sydney Morning Herald

Political life

Time to retire the budgies, Tony Abbott – Australians love the beach, but some things are best left there. Tony Abbott must ditch those Speedos and don some board shorts – Melbourne Herald Sun

Our Malcolm defiantly confronts turning tide – Katharine Murphy looks at the vanquished Liberal Leader

Economic matters

Westpac 'cynically' doubles RBA interest rate rise – Westpac has shocked the Rudd government by raising its home loan rates by almost double the 0.25 per cent lift in the official cash rate ordered yesterday by the Reserve Bank board – The Australian

Bank doubles RBA increase 'to recoup costs' – Westpac has defied a furious Treasurer and increased its standard variable mortgage rate by almost double the 0.25-point increase that the Reserve Bank decided upon at its board meeting yesterday – Sydney Morning Herald

Market doubtful but RBA likely to press on – The debt futures market says there is a less than 50 per cent chance the Reserve Bank of Australia (RBA) will raise interest rates against at its next opportunity. And the next opportunity is two months from now, when the RBA's board holds its next monetary policy meeting following the usual January hiatus. Those odds suggest there will be long gap - three or even four months - between interest rate rises, after a rapid-fire three increases in three months of December, November and October. But neither the state of the economy nor the RBA's commentary suggest any reason to expect such a dramatic shift in the RBA's approach – Sydney Daily Telegraph

Foreign affairs

Unbidden by the Obama administration, Prime Minister Kevin Rudd has sent more police to Afghanistan – Kevin Rudd has headed off a push by the Obama administration to boost Australia's troop commitment in Afghanistan by agreeing to send more police trainers and civilian aid to help the war effort – The Australian

Kevin Rudd's mission to host Obamas in Australia – US President Barack Obama could visit Australia for the first time next year - and he may even bring the First Family. Prime Minister Kevin Rudd said a trip was on the agenda after his 45-minute meeting with the President in the Oval Office yesterday – The Australian

Australia an Asian nation, say Chinese - A Lowy Institute poll of Chinese public opinion on world affairs, to be released today, shows Australia is accepted as an Asian nation, with an important role to play in regional organisations, attractive values and a good political system – Melbourne Age


Watchful Labor flirts with double dissolution – The Federal Government is playing down the likelihood of an early election on climate change but is canvassing the option internally – Sydney Morning Herald

Rann rejects extra parliamentary sittings – Premier Mike Rann has dismissed calls for extra parliamentary sittings, saying that having no sittings until after the March election is nothing new – Adelaide Advertiser

First test comes on Saturday – the Sydney Morning Herald previews this weekend’s federal by-elections.


State lobbyists forced to show their hands - companies must now be on a new register to gain access to State Government ministers and departments. The register, launched yesterday, already lists 21 lobbying firms, representing some of the nation's largest companies, including Shell, Linfox and CSR – Melbourne Age


The great conservative revolt – Tony Abbott's victory is a fundamental change in the power and ideology of the Liberal Party, says Paul Kelly in The Australian. It is a smashing win for the conservative wing that has outsmarted and outmuscled the progressives.

Tug of war for party's soul – Michelle Grattan in the Melbourne Age says the Liberals, by a single vote, have taken a big risk.

Winner of the tussle for leader was the one with the bigger punch - The reason Abbott is Liberal leader today and Turnbull is a backbencher is because, in the political ring, Abbott packs a bigger punch. Roughly equally matched in intellect -- both were Rhodes scholars -- Abbott has had the better of the political contests – Mike Steketee in The Australian

Tony Abbott is a political rarity - an MP who says what he thinks -  writes Ben Packham in the Melbourne Herald Sun

War on ETS – Andrew Bolt in the Melbourne Herald Sun calls it a pure fluke of course but the Liberals have voted to stand up at last and fight.

No salvation for Rudd's ETS – Terry McCrann in the Melbourne Herald Sun writes that on amazing hair's breadth events are the fortunes of nations decided. Just one vote saved us from the disastrous insanity of Kevin Rudd and Malcolm Turnbull's Emissions Trading Scheme.

The Monk enjoys a day of miracles – Tony Wright in the Melbourne Age

Rudd faces fight for his future – Peter Hartcher in the Sydney Morning Herald writes that Malcolm Turnbull lost his leadership but Kevin Rudd lost the most important reform of his prime ministership. The Liberal Party has destroyed the national consensus on how to deal with climate change.

Mr Right arrives in budgie-smugglers - According to party legend, it was Tony Abbott's mother ''Pete'' who famously predicted her son would end up either as Pope or prime minister writes John Huxley in a pen portrait of the new Liberal Leader.

Hot debate demands cool heads – Ross Gittins in the Sydney Morning Herald says Kevin Rudd has not bothered to explain or defend his emissio0ns trading scheme, preferring to keep public attention on the brawling Libs.

Westpac raises rates with unfettered confidence – The banks are in the business of lending money. But their real mission is to make money - out of us. And they're very good at it. Why did Westpac almost double the Reserve Bank's interest rate rise when it passed it on to mortgage loans yesterday? Because it could. It's probably got a pretty good idea that the other banks won't embarrass it by holding their rates down. And the non-banks can't raise money, so they have none to lend – Tim Colebatch in the Melbourne Age

A mad era best forgotten - along with Hewson and Latham – Peter Costello gives his verdict in the Melbourne Age

ETS may be for Rudd what Work Choices was for Howard – Miranda Devine strikes an optimistic noted for Liberals in the Sydney Morning Herald

Climate sceptics have made their triumphant return – writes Marian Wilkinson in the Sydney Morning Herald

Lodge is a long way off, but new man will shore up base – is the view according to Gerard Henderson in the Sydney Morning Herald

Australia must add a dash of nuclear ambition to its energy agenda - The scenario pointing to the need to cut global greenhouse gas emissions by 60 per cent by 2050 relative to 1990 levels is scientifically based. Many countries have adopted that target; few know how to achieve it. Ziggy Zwitkowski in the in the Sydney Morning Herald makes the case for nuclear power.

The Liberal base had already voted – Paul Sheehan in the Sydney Morning Herald explains how Malcolm Turnbull had long languished in the opinion polls, but now his party's grassroots had mobilised against him.

Climate scorches Liberals' unity – Paul Strangio in the Melbourne Age argues that so trenchantly opposed to Labor's emissions trading scheme was the Liberals' conservative camp of climate change sceptics that its members were prepared to unleash mayhem to coerce the party towards their position.


Mixed messages: rates up, borrowing down - There was an unusual juxtaposition going on in the Australian financial and economic landscape this week. A couple of days ago details of monthly banking volumes were made public. They showed credit growth (the volume of lending) in Australia had slowed to its lowest level in 17 years, a meagre 1 per cent growth. Yesterday the Reserve Bank of Australia increased the cash rate by another quarter of a percentage point. This represents a somewhat confused set of signals – Elizabeth Knight in the Sydney Morning Herald

Frozen $15b still out of reach – Investors trying to reclaim up to $15 billion frozen for the past year in a range of mortgage funds have been unable to recover all their money, with redemption requests overwhelming the money funds have at hand. Perpetual, one of the industry's giants, yesterday said investors, mostly retirees, who sought to redeem their holdings in the past year had received 91c in the dollar. Others have paid out a lower proportion of claims to retail investors, who bought the assets for their higher returns and perceived safety – Sydney Morning Herald


Maleny, Dalby face water crisis in scorching heat – As the effect of an unseasonally hot spell takes hold, two Queensland towns are on the brink of running dry as councils urge residents to turn off taps – Brisbane Courier Mail

NT Govt to dump climate stalling – The Northern Territory will go it alone on climate change - despite the impending demise of the Commonwealth's Emissions Trading Scheme (ETS). Chief Minister Paul Henderson had promised to have a climate change policy in place by February this year, but pushed it back 10 months while waiting for the Federal Government to release its plan – Northern Territory News



GPs bombarded with multiple ailments – The pressure on family doctors is growing, with new figures showing they are being asked to diagnose or manage an increasing number of health problems at each patient visit – The Australian

The drink

Alcohol before the age of18 OK, half of Australian parents say – Half of all parents think teenagers should be allowed to drink alcohol before they turn 18. The concept has its greatest support among wealthy Australians, a survey conducted by health fund MBF showed – Sydney Daily Telegraph

Under-age drinking OK, says half of Australia - The survey prompted the Australian Drug Foundation to renew its calls for Victoria and other states and territories to fall into line with Queensland, where adults are banned from supplying alcohol to minors in private homes if they lack the consent of the minor's parents – Melbourne Age

Brumby won't stop new licensed venues opening – Premier John Brumby says Melbourne's nightlife will be allowed to keep growing, despite a claim by Chief Commissioner Simon Overland that the city has too many licensed venues – Melbourne Age

Not so fantastic plastic: Ivy takes on glass ban – When Ivy and Establishment challenged new alcohol restrictions in the Supreme Court, there was laughter at the prospect of using plastic cups to serve drinks in the venues' upmarket restaurants. Yesterday Justice Clifton Hoeben said it was not surprising, and that requiring the use of plastic drinkware in expensive restaurants like those at Justin Hemmes's flagship nightspots was clearly inappropriate – Sydney Morning Herald

Health and hospitals

Hospitals face meltdown if pandemic hits QueenslandQueensland’s emergency departments are headed for meltdown in the event of a "true" pandemic after a near-catastrophic winter – Brisbane Courier Mail

Law and order

Police Commissioner Bob Atkinson wants robot plane to track speedsterQueensland police have demanded unmanned aircraft to track hoon cars as new figures reveal almost one in four high-speed pursuits end in a crash – Brisbane Courier Mail

Overland defends police moves – Victorian Chief Commissioner Simon Overland has been forced to defend his controversial rotation policy as a second experienced murder investigator quit the force after he was moved from the homicide squad – Melbourne Age

Send young offenders straight to court: MP - Police would be stripped of the ability to issue juvenile cautions for graffiti and other antisocial behaviour under a plan to send young offenders straight to the courts or a juvenile justice team – The West Australian

Porter rushes Bill to ban troublemakers - The State Government has rushed the tabling of draft legislation which, if passed, would give courts the power to "name and shame" and impose bans on antisocial offenders – The West Australian


Intimidating and violent: defector - A former Scientology leader says bullying is widespread in the church – Sydney Morning Herald

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