Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Wed Feb 19th Todays News

A momentous day, where former ALP parliamentary member and union leader Craig Thomson has been convicted of misusing union funds for whore-ing and inappropriate personal use. Apparently it was felt that his use of a union credit card to access porn in hotels was ok by members. That is how they expect their union dues to be spent. Also today, Peter Slipper's case is being heard. Queen Mary 2 docks in Sydney, as a powerful electrical storm approaches. Flannery said it would never rain again. It wasn't the only thing he got wrong. 

Today is a momentous day. Copernicus, Merle Oberon, Lee Marvin, Smokey Robinson, Seal and Lisa McCune were born on this day, providing eternal entertainment value to the reality challenged Sarah Hanson-Young. Edison patented the phonograph, allowing us to hear again Thomson's heartfelt protestations of innocence before parliament, which we now know were lies. It is the day Democrat FDR signed executive order 9066 so that anyone identified as Japanese was placed in a camp regardless of virtue. And the day GOP President Ford rescinded that executive order. A day of justice. Give thanks to someone born on this day. 
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Hatches
Happy birthday and many happy returns Stephanie AnnSylvia PhanMatthew TjongJacob BozdasSylvia Te and Jacki Bailey. Born on the same day, across the years, along with
Matches
Despatches
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The Craig Thomson charade is over

Miranda Devine – Tuesday, February 18, 2014 (8:10pm)

SO Craig Thomson is guilty. Surprise surprise. Now we can drop the whole farce of pretending we buy his ridiculous story that someone stole his credit card, misappropriated his driver licence, cloned his phone, forged his signature, and tried to set him up with prostitutes.

Icon Arrow Continue reading 'The Craig Thomson charade is over'
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If Iran is so evil, why this protest?

Andrew Bolt February 19 2014 (12:34pm)

I thought the “asylum seeker” unfortunately killed on Manus Island was actually seeking asylum from the wicked Iranian regime. So why this protest over his fate?
IRAN’S foreign ministry has reportedly summoned Australia’s ambassador to protest the death of an Iranian asylum-seeker during rioting on Manus Island...
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Bolt Report back - and bigger

Andrew Bolt February 19 2014 (11:59am)

The Twitterverse has exploded in rage, but I trust lovers of reason won’t be displeased:
NEWS Corp Australia columnist Andrew Bolt is being given more airtime with his Network Ten show to double in length to one hour when it returns on March 2. 

The new-look The Bolt Report will include a new segment, called News Watch, which promises “to put the media under genuine scrutiny”.
The fun starts at 10am and 4pm on Sunday, March 2.
I believe this is meant to be a complaint, but I shall treat it as a request:
image
Among the guests for the first show: Peter Costello, Michael Costa and Gerard Henderson.  We have invited Bill Shorten to come on the show on the very near future, of course, and hope the old Labor ban is lifted. I did think it counter-productive.  
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Freedom-loving fox in ABC Lateline’s henhouse

Andrew Bolt February 19 2014 (11:50am)

Tim Wilson, being a classical liberal rather than of the Left, gets a hostile introduction from the ABC’s Lateline, which normally treats “human rights” advocates with the most studied respect:
MARGOT O’NEILL, REPORTER: ....A former media commentator specialising in trade and climate change for the free market think tank the Institute of Public Affairs, he has no conventional professional human rights experience.
What on earth is a “conventional professional human rights experience”? What was the “conventional professional human rights experience” of Race Discrimination Commissioner Tim Soutphommasane, a former Labor staffer? 
Fuming Leftists are interviewed, making ludicrous analogies that, if they had any merit, could be equally applied to Soutphommasane but were not:
BEN SAUL, UNIVERSITY OF SYDNEY: I think the process for his appointment was not fair or open or transparent. ... You can’t just have opinions about human rights, in the same way that I wouldn’t be appointed Chief Medical Officer of the Commonwealth just because I’ve got opinions about hospitals.
The interviewer then starts with a hostile question containing a strange non sequitur:
EMMA ALBERICI, PRESENTER:  ...: Do the other commissioners have any reason to fear your appointment, given that 12 months ago the IPA was actually calling for the abolition of the Human Rights Commission?
How would the views of some IPA members (not Wilson himself) on the abolition of the HRC make Wilson’s appointment to that body something to “fear”?
EMMA ALBERICI: Well, can we just talk about - just so that we can really understand your position here, ...
Who is this “we”, Emma? Who is this “we” that demands to be reassured?
And then a string of questions such as this, showing just where the ABC sides:
EMMA ALBERICI: But your view presupposes a level playing field, where in fact it becomes survival of the fittest, doesn’t it?
Just nail him:

EMMA ALBERICI: But if I could just get - that’s all hypothetical. But as the law currently stands, I just want to pin you on this matter, particularly: is it discriminatory, in your view?
And then almost a gasp of surprise at the audacity of freedom:
EMMA ALBERICI: OK. Well this is the Attorney-General’s view. He wants to abolish Section 18C of the [Racial Discrimination Act] ...
TIM WILSON: Well he’s actually said he’s going to - looking to change it.
EMMA ALBERICI: Changing it.
TIM WILSON: I want full repeal.
EMMA ALBERICI: Pardon?
UPDATE
Reader Stephen Dawson:
Yesterday I was jolted awake by AM on ABC Radio National. In its report ‘Indonesian foreign minister responds to leaked trade spying report’ the reporter, Helen Brown, called Marty Natalegawa ‘The consummate diplomat’:
HELEN BROWN: The consummate diplomat made the remarks in both English and Indonesian, well knowing that Western and local media reporters were taking note.

I wonder if she would ever term, say, Julie Bishop as ‘the consummate diplomat’.  
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Parliament could jail Craig Thomson for lying

Andrew Bolt February 19 2014 (8:23am)

I was wrong on 2GB last night to suggest Craig Thomson could escape punishment for lying to Parliament:

CRAIG Thomson faces a fresh inquiry for allegedly misleading the parliament over a 2012 speech in which he denied spending union money on prostitutes. Senior government sources have confirmed consideration is being given to re-referring Thomson to parliament’s powerful privileges committee, following yesterday’s court ruling that he defrauded the Health Services Union…
The House of Representatives has the power to impose jail terms of up to six months and fines of up to $5000 for a “breach of privilege”. It could also publicly admonish the former MP by calling him “to the bar”, and seeking an apology.
UPDATE
Great skills at the ABC. It publishes a long article on former Labor MP Craig Thomson - a man defended by Labor with Labor Party money - without once mentioning the word “Labor”.
(Thanks to readers Peter of Bellevue Hill and Baldrick.) 
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Green policies are killing manufacturing - and for what?

Andrew Bolt February 19 2014 (8:13am)

Brendan Pearson, chief executive of the Minerals Council of Australia, on how green policies made our power prices among the world’s highest - and for what?.
Less than a decade ago, Australia enjoyed the lowest energy costs in the developed world… But today that advantage has largely gone.
As a result of the carbon tax, the renewable energy target and a range of other energy policy interventions at the federal and state government level, Australia has some of the highest electricity costs in the developed world.
Household electricity prices have increased by more than 110 per cent in the past five years… Australian businesses - which account for 70 per cent of total electricity use in Australia - have experienced an almost 80 per cent increase in prices since 2009 and there are more rises on the way.
The causes are not hard to find.
The carbon tax accounted for 16 per cent of the electricity bill for a typical large industrial user in NSW in 2012-13.
In 2013-14, the carbon tax added an estimated $6.4 billion to the nation’s tax bill.... Official estimates suggest that the RET will generate a transfer of $20bn from householders and industrial users by 2020…
These green policies are helping to destroy manufacturing in Australia. But even Pearson shies away from nailing the true insanity of them: the carbon tax and renewable energy target actually make essentially zero difference to the global temperature they are meant to lower. All this astonishing pain for zero gain. The scale of the madness is for most Australians simply beyond comprehension.
UPDATE
And workers and the poor o pay most for this new religious mania of the disenchanted urban elite:
Alan Morris and Lynne Chester, The Conversation, September 20, 2012:

AN increasing number of low-income households are suffering from energy poverty ... the lowest 20 per cent of Australian households had an average weekly income of $314. Their average expenditure on household energy was 7 per cent of disposable income, three times more than the wealthiest households ... The Salvation Army recently found that in regional NSW, just over half the people are going without meals to pay for electricity. A third of these people could not afford to heat their homes. Many ... were plagued by constant anxiety and depression was common ... 
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Human Rights Commission silent when boat policies fail, outraged when they don’t

Andrew Bolt February 19 2014 (7:50am)

In six years of Labor Government, the Human Rights Commission held just one inquiry into the policies which had lured 50,000 boat people to Australia, drowned at least 1100 of them, crammed our detention centres to overflowing and had thousands of boat people released into the community without proper vetting or permission to work. And that inquiry was into only the jailing of the younger people smugglers:
The outgoing President of the Australian Human Rights Commission, Catherine Branson QC, recently completed an Inquiry into the treatment of individuals suspected of people smuggling offences who say that they are children.
Not six months into the Abbott Government, and the Human Rights Commission is already holding one inquiry and now demanding a second into policies that have stopped the boats, stopped the drownings and cut the number of detainees. Following the riot and death on Manus Island:
The president of the Human Rights Commission, Professor Gillian Triggs, said Australia was not upholding its international responsibility to asylum seekers, and also called for an inquiry.
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Natalegawa fools the ABC again

Andrew Bolt February 19 2014 (7:30am)

Indonesian foreign minister Marty Natalegawa is a blowhard who seems to be getting off on the eagerness of the ABC and Fairfax to report his every attack on the Abbott Government’s attempts to stop Indonesians from smuggling illegal immigrants to our shores. Take last week:

Dr Natalegawa told reporters Indonesia does what it can to stop boats leaving the country and that Australia’s actions are “against the values of humanity”.
He says he will inform US secretary of state John Kerry - who will visit Jakarta next week - about Australia’s actions and let officials draw their own conclusions.
“There is no need to ask; we only need to inform it, and let America draw its own conclusion,” he said.
Bait swallowed. ABC Insiders on Sunday:
BARRIE CASSIDY: You are being true to yourself and true to your policy, as you say, but nevertheless it does seem to be offending the Indonesians, to the point where they’re now going to raise this issue with the US Secretary of State, John Kerry.
SCOTT MORRISON: They’re welcome to do that…
BARRIE CASSIDY: What do you think John Kerry would do about it anyway, even if he does regard it as a global issue?
SCOTT MORRISON: That’s a matter for secretary Kerry, it’s also a matter for the Indonesians.
But once again Natalegawa is all headline and no story:
EMMA ALBERICI: How concerning was it for yourself and secretary Kerry to hear the foreign minister of Indonesia raise the issue of border protection vis a vis the relationship with Australia? Does it concern you that the relationship between Australia and Indonesia is becoming so strained as a result of those policies?
DANNY RUSSEL [US assistant secretary of state for East Asia]: Well I didn’t see in our conversation evidence that the issue of border control was something that the Indonesians wanted us to understand let alone do anything about. In the press conference that secretary Kerry and foreign minister Natalegawa gave, of course the Indonesian foreign minister memorably referred to the disclosures reports...
(Thanks to reader Peter.) 
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Traitor: Edward Snowden tips off Al-Shabaab terrorists

Andrew Bolt February 19 2014 (7:14am)

Al-Shabaab, the terrorist group behind the Kenyan mall massacre, gets a heads-up from US traitor Edward Snowden:
In January, Al-Shabaab issued a 15-day ultimatum for local giant, Hormuud Telecom [Somalia’s biggest telco], to stop proving mobile internet and fibre optic services because it said they were used by Western spy agencies to collect information on Muslims…

The Mayor of Mogadishu, Mohamed Nur Tarzan, told the media that Hormuud officials had said company staff were forced “at gunpoint” by Al-Shabaab fighters to switch off the mobile internet service…
Mohamed Yusuf, an academic in Mogadishu, said that the extremist group actions to ban mobile internet services in southern and central Somalia were triggered by the Edward Snowden revelations of widespread U.S. government surveillance programmes it maintained in and outside the country…

Yusuf also said that the major reason for the group decision was the possibility that mobile internet connections could be used to track the leaders and commanders of Al-Shabaab, which the U.S. government considers a terrorist entity and a legitimate target for its drone attacks.
(Thanks to reader Tabitha N.) 
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In praise of politics

Andrew Bolt February 19 2014 (6:47am)


In praise of politics. Professor James Allan on Q&A:
YASSMIN ABDEL-MAGIED: That’s the crux of the matter. I mean, the discussion [about a carbon tax] is political. The discussion - The discussion is political. You guys are making something that’s about the future and our environment into something that’s about politics and that’s not what we want to hear. What we want to hear - I mean John Kerry got up and said “Climate change is the weapon of mass destruction”. I mean isn’t that clear? We were people - we were a country that ... HEATHER RIDOUT: He’s a serious guy, John Kerry. Yeah. And Christine Lagarde is a serious person.
YASSMIN ABDEL-MAGIED: Exactly. And so it’s something that we need to tackle with the seriousness that it deserves and I think reducing it to simply a policy discussion is disrespectful and…
JAMES ALLAN: Yassmin, life is about politics when people disagree.
YASSMIN ABDEL-MAGIED: Well, this is true.
JAMES ALLAN: And there is no way you can attend that we are all going to be in a Coke commercial holding hands and singing. People disagree and when you disagree you have politics and politics is a good thing and to say that it’s just about politics misses the point. It is good that it’s people disagree and you have to discuss it and you end up having to vote. It is the only way to resolve disagreement. Unless you believe in some world experts who sit on climate commissions or something deciding these things, which is a bad thing, you have to decide by politics and politics is a good thing.
YASSMIN ABDEL-MAGIED: I mean, look, politics is a good thing but not when it stops progress…
ERIC ABETZ: But who determines what progress is? I’m old-fashioned. I believe in the ballot box and the say of the people.
A proto-autocrat and a hand-maiden to the corporate state are confronted by two democrats. Thank heavens.

In praise of even brutal politics. House of Cards writer and show runner Beau Willimon on his creation, the murderous US congressman Francis Underwood:
We tend to make heroes out of folks like Martin Luther King and Gandhi – as we should – who give voice to major ideas that are world-changing. But then there’s the people who actually have to go and enact it into law, figure out how it’s going to work, work with the people Gandhi and Martin Luther King won’t speak to, the other half. And that’s where pragmatism comes into play. Pragmatism is the vehicle of idealism....
We offer an extreme version of unapologetic self-interest, someone who has no discernible moral code whatsoever other than self-preservation and advancement of himself and his wife. And yet he manages to get more done than most people around him. Is that OK?
There is a case to be made that progress should be divorced from motive. I could have the best motivation in the world, I could be a saint, but if I achieve nothing what good is it?…
I do have to agree with Francis Underwood to a degree. Ideology is a form of quicksand. It’s prescriptive behaviour. You give yourself the illusion of choice – ‘I’m choosing not to support these people’ or ‘I refuse to negotiate because I’m standing up for what I believe in’ – but really you’re just doing nothing. You’re sitting on a white stallion that’s not going anywhere.
Government is the business of compromise. And if people don’t find a way to loosen themselves from their own ideologies … nothing can ever be achieved.
Mmm. Ronald Reagan? Margaret Thatcher?  I wonder whether Willimon, a former Democrat staffer, is speaking more to the Left. But still...
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Corrupt. How Labor blew $40 million on its favorite union

Andrew Bolt February 19 2014 (6:07am)

Julia Gillard was propped up by the AWU and blew $40 million of our money on fluffing the pillows of a dying smelter than featherbedded AWU members.
Grace Collier:
JOE Hockey is dead right: the $40 million of our money given to Alcoa in June 2012 has gone “down the tube”.
Alcoa spent a lot of money on three new enterprise bargaining agreements… Thanks to the EBAs, perhaps up to half of the $40m was committed to cash pay rises and flow-on labour costs. The rest may go towards the closure bill, estimated by Alcoa as between $250m and $270m. Roughly divided, this equates to a budget of $250,000 to $270,000 in redundancy pay and associated benefits for each employee…
The Point Henry Rolled Products EBA gave pay rises totalling 12 per cent from September 2012.
Under the life of that EBA, the entry-level wage for a continuous seven-day shift worker was hiked from $82,106 annually to $91,571 by 2015. The wage for an experienced continuous seven-day shift worker went from $119,334 annually to $133,092 in 2015.
Union representatives get up to 10 days a year paid union training… . Should any other business be contracted to provide labour, Alcoa will force it to match its own terrible wages outcomes....  An employee with 20 years’ service would receive a severance payment of more than two years’ pay.
Gillard did not just want to guarantee the AWU’s support for her against Kevin Rudd. She also wanted to buy the union’s support for the carbon tax that threatened to kill Alcoa’s Point Henry smelter prematurely. From 2012:
The Commonwealth is contributing most of the $40 million [actually all] and the Victorian Government is putting up $4 million to go into a fund to help Alcoa’s supply chain…
Australian Workers Union federal secretary Paul Howes welcomed the deal and said it guaranteed Australia could continue to produce aluminium…
Mr Howes, who negotiated with Alcoa over the carbon tax, denies the tax’s impending introduction will force the closure of the smelter when its viability is reviewed in 2014…
“[As] all economic modelling shows, the carbon price impact on aluminium smelting is the equivalent of a one cent appreciation in the value of the Australian dollar.”
By sheer coincidence, $40 million is what Alcoa had said the year before was what the carbon tax would cost its Victorian plants:
Its general manager of climate strategy and federal government relations, Tim McAuliffe, told a Senate select committee inquiry into carbon tax pricing mechanisms that Alcoa faced extra costs of $40 million per year if the tax was introduced.
No wonder Howes demanded the handout. Check the pain Labor’s carbon tax caused Alcoa last financial year:
Alcoa Australia, which is reportedly close to shutting down its Point Henry aluminium smelter, paid $137.2 million.
Another shameful story of subsidies and Labor politics. The word “corrupt” can’t be far off the mark in describing this rank opportunism. And as for the madness of forcing a company to pay $137 million just to make a useless symbolic gesture about global warming…
Meanwhile, Alcoa has no carbon tax in the United States, and fewer pro-union workplace restrictions on how it runs its operations. So while it has closed some uneconomic potlines there, too, it nevertheless last month announced:
Alcoa (NYSE: AA) today announced it has completed a $300 million expansion at its Davenport, Iowa facility dedicated to supplying aluminum sheet products to the automotive industry…
According to automakers, demand for aluminum to produce vehicles—already the second-most-used material used to make cars today—is expected to nearly double by 2025…

In addition to its expansion in Iowa—for which long-term supply agreements have been secured—Alcoa is adding automotive capacity in Alcoa, Tennessee which is scheduled to be complete in mid-2015; and at its joint venture rolling mill in Saudi Arabia, to be complete by the end of 2014. Alcoa is investing approximately $670 million in the three expansions ...
Message received yet? 
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Freedom training

Andrew Bolt February 19 2014 (5:46am)

A new course is offered on the economics that actually works:
Most universities teach a biased version of political economy that promotes big government and failed Keynesian policies. In response, the Australian Taxpayers’ Alliance (with the support of the Atlas Economic Research Foundation) last year launched “Foundations of Liberty & Free Market Economics” in Sydney, to introduce students to free-market ideas, and the people behind these ideas.
We are now delighted to announce that we shall be launching Foundations of Liberty & Free Market Economics in Melbourne during Semester 1, 2014.
The Melbourne program will be jointly run by two of Australia’s leading economists, Professor Sinclair Davidson and Professor Jason Potts, and is a must for all students and recent graduates interested in expanding their knowledge of economics and the fundamental underpinnings of a free society.
The course shall consist of 10 interactive 2 hour evening seminars and will include student-led discussion, stimulating debate, and structured material, followed by further discussion over beer and pizza…
The cost of the full program is $750. However, both full and half scholarships will be awarded to up to 15 deserving applicants.
This course is open to EVERYONE and not just currently enrolled tertiary students.
Enrol here.
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Bad news for Barry: we’ve got more readers than ever

Andrew Bolt February 19 2014 (5:35am)

Paul Barry seems to have been in too much of a hurry to bury News Corp:
NEWS Corp Australia has hit out at the ABC’s Media Watch for lacking professionalism after host Paul Barry failed to seek any response before airing an episode “littered with errors”.
“You’d think after the national bollocking the ABC rightly received just this month about the lack of fact checking and serious lack of balance they would have been a little more careful with Monday night’s Media Watch,” News Corp CEO Julian Clarke said on Tuesday…
“Paul Barry subjects his viewers to a lecture about the state of our business and the standards of journalism and fails to contact a single executive from our company while compiling his report,” Mr Clarke said…
“Barry quoted the Herald Sun’s circulation as being under 400,000 sales per day. If Media Watch was attempting to give the viewers some insight into the newspaper business, it may have pointed out that the Herald Sun’s total audience, print and digital, is larger this year than last year and that the public are happily paying for the digital version,” Mr Clarke said.
“He should also have pointed out that The Australian has over 57,000 digital subscribers, with paid digital sales growing 45 per cent over the last year. Total print and digital sales are up 4.4 per cent over the year."…
Given the chance to reply, Mr Barry repeatedly refused to say whether Media Watch had a duty under the ABC code of practice to give News an opportunity to respond.
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Turnbull denies telling Channel Seven mate he regretted police raid

Andrew Bolt February 19 2014 (5:11am)

A misjudgement, if true:
SEVEN’S commercial director Bruce McWilliam says a senior Abbott government minister regretted the raid at his network [yesterday] over a Schapelle Corby deal…
“I did speak to someone in government and they didn’t know this raid was occurring,’’ he said. “When they went back and checked they were told what I believe to be a falsehood, that we weren’t co-operating (with police), which is completely untrue,” he said.
A bad look, given the police investigation is and should be independent of government, although Turnbull denies he apologised:
FEDERAL communications Minister Malcolm Turnbull ... phoned the Attorney General George Brandis and Justice Minister Michael Keenan after receiving a call from Seven commercial director, former business associate and friend Bruce McWilliam after scores of armed AFP officers descended on the Pyrmont headquarters yesterday morning over Seven’s planned paid interview with the convicted drug smuggler…
Mr Turnbull last night said his actions were “entirely appropriate”.
“I’m the communications minister and it’s perfectly natural for a television business that’s got problems of any kind to call me — I’m their minister.” he said.
“They rang me about the AFP raid and I rang or got in touch with and spoke to the relevant ministers, Michael Keenan and George Brandis, just to ascertain what was going on.
“And then I told Channel Seven that if they wanted to discuss the matter further with the government they should call George Brandis. And that’s it.
I didn’t express any sort of views about the merits of it either way.’’…
COMMUNICATIONS Minister Malcolm Turnbull and Bruce McWilliam go back a long way. Both lawyers, the pair formed their own firm, Turnbull McWilliam, in 1986...
McWilliam is aggrieved by the even the slightest inconvenience caused by police checking to see if, as is widely suspected, his network is in the process of breaching laws against criminals benefitting from their crimes:
Poor Kim Wilson, the editor of New Idea, had all her fabric samples pushed aside while they sought evidence of criminal offences in her office...
UPDATE
As far as I can tell, Seven’s story is that it has a deal with Corby but doesn’t, and that it wouldn’t pay her - well, at least not more than $1 million. And how dare the police believe it’s about to help a convicted criminal from benefitting from the proceeds of crime.
Channel Seven seems to me to feel peculiarly free to play the law and the public for suckers:
Seven itself initially reported an agreement with the Corbys for an exclusive interview had been made and provided to the police, although Mr McWilliam subsequently said that “no one has reached an agreement — I think that’s the element the federal police don’t accept”.
Mr McWilliam said Seven’s offer for the exclusive interview with Corby was well under $1 million — not the $2m reported…
Veteran journalist and Sunday Night reporter Mike Willesee fronted the media in Bali yesterday, reiterating that no deal had been signed with Corby but said Seven was in the box seat when it was appropriate for her to give an interview.
That’s not how Channel Seven’s own David Koch and Samantha Armytage understood the deal last week:
“I reckon we should have nothing to do with her as a network. Totally disagree with paying a convicted drug smuggler $2 million,” Koch said.

His co-host, Samantha Armytage, responded: “Too late for that.”
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Law upheld

Andrew Bolt February 18 2014 (8:32pm)

It is reassuring to know that not even Channel Seven is above the law. Less reassuring is that some Liberal Minister is apologising for that inconvenience:

SEVEN’S commercial director Bruce McWilliam says a senior Abbott government minister regretted the raid at his network this morning over a Schapelle Corby deal.
He is furious more than 20 Australian Federal Police officers barged into the offices of Channel Seven at Pyrmont and New Idea to examine their paperwork and correspondence with the Corby family.
UPDATE
Chris Berg of the IPA:
As I argued in this recent FreedomWatch post, Australia’s literary proceeds of crime laws are a restriction on freedom of speech. An AFP on a media organisation is an incredibly serious thing.
I disagree. Corby is perfectly entitled to speak to whomever about her experiences as a convicted drug smuggler. The legislation merely prevents her from being paid for it. The only thing that’s being kept shut here is Channel Seven’s wallet. 
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What does Labor say now about Craig Thomson and the money it gave him?

Andrew Bolt February 18 2014 (7:37pm)

September 2010:

Neil Mitchell:
You’ve run a union, you understand these things, do you support him?
Bill Shorten:
Oh, yeah, I believe him.
Neil Mitchell:
You believe him [Thomson], no case to answer?
Bill Shorten:
I believe him;
August 2011:

Mrs BRONWYN BISHOP (Mackellar) (15:26): My question is to the Prime Minister. I refer the Prime Minister to her statement that she retains complete confidence in the member for Dobell but that she had not undertaken a thorough investigation into the allegations surrounding that member. Has she now conducted an investigation of her own into the allegations surrounding the member for Dobell and is she satisfied that her confidence in the member for Dobell is warranted?
Ms GILLARD (Lalor—Prime Minister) (15:27): I thank the member for the question. It gives me the opportunity to say I have complete confidence in the member for Dobell. I think he is doing a fine job representing the people of his constituency in this place and raising their concerns in this parliament, as is appropriate for a local member. I look forward to him continuing to do that job for a very long, long, long time to come.
June 2012:
THE NSW Labor Party paid almost $350,000 in legal costs for Craig Thomson before the troubled MP was suspended from the party in May.
Today:
FORMER Labor MP Craig Thomson has been found guilty of defrauding the Health Services Union during his time as national secretary.
Melbourne magistrate Charlie Rozencwajg today ruled Mr Thomson had dishonestly obtained a financial advantage by using his union credit card to pay for prostitutes.
Labor has been soft on union corruption. The links between Labor and the union movement need to be investigated by the royal commission into the union movement.
PS: Has anyone ever met such a brazen, shameless liar?
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Who is minding the gate?

Andrew Bolt February 18 2014 (7:29pm)

Once again, I would like some assurances on how our immigration program is being run to our benefit. Yes, we import families who produce brilliant medicos, but we also seem to import people seemingly ill-equipped to join in:
Kareem Al-Salami, 48, was charged with attempted murder after he allegedly stabbed highly respected surgeon and award-winning researcher Dr Michael Wong in the foyer at the Western Hospital in Footscray about 8.30am…
His lawyer said the man spoke “very broken English” and was assisted by an Arabic interpreter during the police interview, but not while speaking with his lawyer.
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Dogs should not take steroids .. ed
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MADU Odiokwu Pastorvin
PRAY.
Father,I thank You for Your exceeding, abundant promises.I thank You for giving me everything I need to fulfill the dreams You’ve placed in my heart. I choose to stay focused and press forward into the good things You have for me.I invite You to have Your way in and through me. Show me Your ways that I may walk with You and honor You all the days of my life in Jesus’ name. Amen.
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Power at Work!
Now to Him who is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think.
(Ephesians 3:20, NKJV)

Today’s verse tells us that God will do exceedingly, abundantly above all we can ask or think. But here’s the key: the next part says that it’s “...according to the power that works in you.” It’s not according to the power that’s in your neighbor, your boss, your pastor, your priest, the bank or the stock market. It’s according to the power that works in you. In other words, it depends on what you’re believing. If you go around telling yourself, “I’m just average. I’m not that talented. I come from the wrong family,” then the exceeding greatness of God’s power is not going to work in you. That treasure is going to stay buried.

But when you acknowledge God’s greatness in your life, when you see yourself the way He sees you and live by the Word of God, that’s when His power works in you Remember, you’ve been created in the image of Almighty God. You have treasure on the inside. If that treasure is going to come out, you have to have the attitude, “I’ve got what it takes. I’m not waiting on it. I’m not hoping to get it one day. I’m not begging somebody to give me a break. No, I’m equipped, empowered, talented and creative, and I will fulfill the destiny He has in store for me.Reason that way and you will see the difference.God bless you.
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Father,I thank You for giving me everything I need to fulfill the dreams You’ve placed in my heart. I choose to stay focused and press forward into the good things You have me in Jesus’ name. Amen.
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I REPEAT THIS TOPIC BECAUSE IT IS DEADLY.
The Topic Is Worry. 
lots of people are worried about their bills,marriage, health, kids, wrinkles in their faces and all other things. It's an unconscious habit that people are doing that.
Listen. In Matthew 6:25-27 Scripture says that we shouldn't be anxious about our life because "worrying" won't add a single hour in your life. So how do you break the habit of worrying? The WORD.Instead of meditating on the negative, why not meditate on God's Words and promises to you.God bless you.
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Celebrate IDF diversity
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Changsha bowls from the Belitung shipwreck
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“For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.” -Romans 8:38-39
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Morning and Evening by Charles Spurgeon
February 18: Morning
"Shew me wherefore thou contendest with me." - Job 10:2
Perhaps, O tried soul, the Lord is doing this to develop thy graces. There are some of thy graces which would never be discovered if it were not for thy trials. Dost thou not know that thy faith never looks so grand in summer weather as it does in winter? Love is too often like a glow-worm, showing but little light except it be in the midst of surrounding darkness. Hope itself is like a star--not to be seen in the sunshine of prosperity, and only to be discovered in the night of adversity. Afflictions are often the black foils in which God doth set the jewels of his children's graces, to make them shine the better. It was but a little while ago that on thy knees thou wast saying, "Lord, I fear I have no faith: let me know that I have faith." Was not this really, though perhaps unconsciously, praying for trials?--for how canst thou know that thou hast faith until thy faith is exercised? Depend upon it, God often sends us trials that our graces may be discovered, and that we may be certified of their existence. Besides, it is not merely discovery, real growth in grace is the result of sanctified trials. God often takes away our comforts and our privileges in order to make us better Christians. He trains his soldiers, not in tents of ease and luxury, but by turning them out and using them to forced marches and hard service. He makes them ford through streams, and swim through rivers, and climb mountains, and walk many a long mile with heavy knapsacks of sorrow on their backs. Well, Christian, may not this account for the troubles through which thou art passing? Is not the Lord bringing out your graces, and making them grow? Is not this the reason why he is contending with you?

"Trials make the promise sweet;
Trials give new life to prayer;
Trials bring me to his feet,
Lay me low, and keep me there."
Evening
"Father, I have sinned." - Luke 15:18
It is quite certain that those whom Christ has washed in his precious blood need not make a confession of sin, as culprits or criminals, before God the Judge, for Christ has forever taken away all their sins in a legal sense, so that they no longer stand where they can be condemned, but are once for all accepted in the Beloved; but having become children, and offending as children, ought they not every day to go before their heavenly Father and confess their sin, and acknowledge their iniquity in that character? Nature teaches that it is the duty of erring children to make a confession to their earthly father, and the grace of God in the heart teaches us that we, as Christians, owe the same duty to our heavenly Father. We daily offend, and ought not to rest without daily pardon. For, supposing that my trespasses against my Father are not at once taken to him to be washed away by the cleansing power of the Lord Jesus, what will be the consequence? If I have not sought forgiveness and been washed from these offences against my Father, I shall feel at a distance from him; I shall doubt his love to me; I shall tremble at him; I shall be afraid to pray to him: I shall grow like the prodigal, who, although still a child, was yet far off from his father. But if, with a child's sorrow at offending so gracious and loving a Parent, I go to him and tell him all, and rest not till I realize that I am forgiven, then I shall feel a holy love to my Father, and shall go through my Christian career, not only as saved, but as one enjoying present peace in God through Jesus Christ my Lord. There is a wide distinction between confessing sin as a culprit, and confessing sin as a child. The Father's bosom is the place for penitent confessions. We have been cleansed once for all, but our feet still need to be washed from the defilement of our daily walk as children of God.
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Rufus 
[Ro̅o̅'fus] - red.
1. A son of Simon the Cyrenian who was compelled to bear the Cross (Mark 15:21).
2. A believer in Rome greeted by Paul as "the chosen in the Lord" together with "his mother and mine" (Rom. 16:13). Some writers feel that these two may have been the same persons. "Simon's widow might have emigrated to Rome with her two sons, where they became people of eminence in the Church, and that this is the reason why the brothers are mentioned by Mark (15:21), who probably wrote in Rome" (Hastings Dictionary).
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Today's reading: Leviticus 23-24, Mark 1:1-22 (NIV)

View today's reading on Bible Gateway

Today's Old Testament reading: Leviticus 23-24

1 The LORD said to Moses, 2 "Speak to the Israelites and say to them: 'These are my appointed festivals, the appointed festivals of the LORD, which you are to proclaim as sacred assemblies.
The Sabbath
3 "'There are six days when you may work, but the seventh day is a day of sabbath rest, a day of sacred assembly. You are not to do any work; wherever you live, it is a sabbath to the LORD....

Today's New Testament reading: Mark 1:1-22

John the Baptist Prepares the Way
1 The beginning of the good news about Jesus the Messiah, the Son of God, 2 as it is written in Isaiah the prophet:
"I will send my messenger ahead of you,
who will prepare your way"--
3 "a voice of one calling in the wilderness,
'Prepare the way for the Lord,
make straight paths for him.'"


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