Who cares about the Budget? We’ve got Craig Thomson!
Right now the nation’s brightest political minds are trapped in the recycled air of Budget lock up, sniffing out black holes and poring over numbers. Shuffling papers and press releases and pinning down wonks.
As they drift past the tables of quartered chicken sandwiches and party pies to congregate at the figurative water cooler, do you think they’re avidly discussing the ramifications of the wafer-thin surplus? Do you think the drip filter coffee-fed excitement is centred around cuts to foreign aid?
There’s a fair to middling chance that it’s not. While there is a rumour doing the rounds that there will indeed be something big in today’s Budget papers that wasn’t already detailed, the chances are that people are still chinwagging about the Craig Thomson affair.
Fair Work Australia dropped its report into the Health Services Union at 5pm the night before Budget Day. But it still didn’t get buried; plenty of papers had it on the front page.
It fairly bluntly named and shamed former-Labor-MP-turned-independent Craig Thomson.
For an enormous bureaucratic tome, it’s actually good reading in parts – you can see the whole thing here.
Fair Work Australia investigator Terry Nassios said Mr Thomson spent nearly $6000 on the procurement of escort services, and spent $500,000 overall on his union credit cards.
Mr Thomson has repeatedly denied any wrongdoing and claimed his innocence.
That hasn’t stopped Opposition Leader Tony Abbott from calling on Prime Minister Julia Gillard to disavow his vote, or Workplace Relations Minister Bill Shorten declaring the findings “disturbing”.
Political scandals are always fun – and when there’s sex involved there’s even more excitement. But if I was a Health Services Union member I reckon I’d be more pissed off about supporting his political career than his piss ups and peccadilloes.
There have already been so many words written about the Thomson affair, and there will be many more to come. And of course we’re going to have plenty of weighty Budget content for you to gorge on. So for now we just wanted to entertain you with a silly little video. Enjoy!
PS I have no idea why the gun is in the clip or where it came from. The characters in this clip are fictitious and any accidentally included props are entirely incidental. No Craig Thomsons were harmed in the filming.
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