The decorum of Tony Abbott’s Libs versus The Fibs election strategy revealed today didn’t last long.
The Opposition Leader presented a nicely-nicely persona, a bloke who wanted policy to the fore and who would not call Prime Minister Julia Gillard a liar. He would merely make broad references to fibs.
“So my pledge to you is that I won’t say one thing before an election and do the opposite afterwards because fibbing your way into office is what’s brought our public life into disrepute,” he told the National Press Club.
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You can’t believe Anthony Mundine is whingeing that he was robbed. You just can’t believe it. That said, it’s Anthony Mundine we’re talking about here, so actually, who’s surprised?
Daniel Geale failed to land a knockout blow last night but he was clearly the better fighter. A bit quicker, a bit smarter, a bit more resilient and as ever, a whole lot more humble.
As a sportsman, Mundine is no longer relevant. He was world class in his day but like Ricky Ponting, he is now in his late 30s and clearly past his prime. Maybe he’ll fight on, may be he won’t. The real question now is whether he is still relevant as a public figure.
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For a country obsessed with home improvement, we are remarkably apathetic about any attempts to renovate our national emblem.
From overhauling the kitchen to playing amateur interior designer, there’s no limit on our collective desire to spruce up our residences.
But turn the conversation to the topic of a little long-overdue remodeling of the national flag and suddenly it all gets far too difficult.
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Prime Minister Julia Gillard has done the right and brave thing in telling the country when the election will be. Right because it focuses the year on policy and takes the focus off process.
Brave because it cedes her prime ministerial prerogative to keep Tony Abbott guessing.
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At the weekend, News.com.au published a piece by The Punch’s Daniel Piotrowski. Dan took a tour of the Church of Scientology in the Sydney suburb Glebe and wrote a piece about what he saw.
In the piece, Dan described eerie corridors intentionally filled with white noise, hardcore study camps, and said he found the place “bewildering”. He pointed out that Census figures show the Church’s following in Australia has shrunk recently.
On Saturday morning, representatives of the Australian Church of Scientology, Vicki Dunstan, told Dan the piece “ridiculed” the Church. So The Punch has given Scientology spokeswoman Virginia Stewart room to reply to the piece, below.
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Last week I visited the largest refugee camp in the world, Dadaab in northern Kenya, home to almost 450,000 Somali refugees.
I also visited the Yida refugee camp in northern South Sudan which has 60,000 Sudanese inhabitants fleeing from the conflict in South Kordofan, Sudan.
My expectations of an African refugee camp were shaped by the images on our TV screens of skeletal starvation and desperately malnourished kids.
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You’d be hard pressed to find an opening news paragraph this week more ludicrous than “Tim Mathieson has apologised for making a joke about small Asian women and prostate examinations”.
It’s not quite up there with the classic “Gordon Ramsay’s porn dwarf double eaten to death by badgers” from 2011, but as far as news leads go it’s pretty much got everything going for it.
Well in 2013 it does, anyway. There used to be a time when a story about the Prime Minister’s boyfriend saying something stupid might have raised a few eyebrows on the gossip pages. (Actually, in years past the fact that the Prime Minister HAD a boyfriend was probably a more exciting story to begin with, but I digress).
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It’s the thirty-oneth of the month. Let’s hope February brings happier times for these mandarin growers of Gayndah, Qld, whose crops have been ruined by the floods.
What, in your humble opinion, is the monarch of citrus fruits? Oranges? Mandas? The mighty grapefruit? Cumquats, perchance?
Anything else got you feeling especially sweet or sour today?
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Despite her denial, Julia Gillard has indeed called on the world’s longest election campaign by nominating September 14 as polling day.
The Prime Minister today was daring Tony Abbott - and to a lesser extent Kevin Rudd—to put up issues of substance or fall behind in the political debate.
And in yet another of the demonstrations of strength she has come to feel necessary, she has made clear she does not intend to be cowed into an early poll. Even if the May Budget is badly received or public opinion surveys don’t lift the way Labor wants, she will go to the voters on her terms, and on her timing.
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One of the most telling moments in the super-hyped Lance Armstrong confession was when he came clean about his vehement assertion that he was the most tested athlete in cycling history - so how could he be guilty?
It had been his war cry against all the non-believers; but in his tell-all with Oprah Winfrey, he scoffed at the cycling authorities’ hopelessly inadequate testing regimen.
He was never, he claimed, tested out of competition, almost never randomly, and almost always on the day of competition.
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