Articles

‘The Libs’ grubby little secret’

Andrew Wilkie* Media Release. Satire: Ted Mead. Anglicare Media Release
22.02.18 5:30 am

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The shocking pokies losses for every pub and club in Tasmania … “When I revealed the most 20 harmful poker machine venues earlier this month, Tasmanians were quite rightly shocked,” Mr Wilkie said. “Now that this more detailed data is out there for all to see, it paints an even grimmer picture of just how much money is sucked out of communities and lost in these venues. And it confirms that big business is the big winner from gambling addiction because the same names pop up over and over again …

• Alliance for Gambling Reform ... … Mr Costello engaged in a 30 minute debate (listen to full 19 minutes conducted on air, https://www.tasmaniatalks.com.au/the-show/25720-tim-costello-compares-aus-pokies-debate-to-nra-in-us) with Tasmania’s most pro-pokies journalist, Grant Broadcasting’s Northern Tasmania presenter Brian Carlton, this morning and made the following points: # As the recent Australia Institute study revealed, Australia has 76% of the world’s pokies in pubs and clubs as most countries recognise the danger of mixing alcohol with addictive pokies at venues which are not exclusively focused on gambling services …

ABC: Pokies are big money in Tasmania — election campaign shows just how contentious they are

Greens: Liberals Plundering Protected Areas, Underfunding Parks

Andrew Wilkie: Yet another grubby Liberal Party pokies secret ... The Independent Member for Denison, Andrew Wilkie, will join Monash University’s Dr Charles Livingstone ( http://tasmaniantimes.com/index.php?/weblog/article/Removing-Tasmanias-pokies-would-help-gamblers-witho/ ) and author and historian Dr James Boyce ( http://tasmaniantimes.com/index.php?/article/will-the-alp-dance-to-lennon-and-/ ) to condemn the Liberal Party’s poker machine policy, which will see the industry benefit to the tune of $250 million. “Make no mistake – the Liberal Party’s poker machine policy isn’t to keep the status quo,” Mr Wilkie said. “Not only will it entrench poker machines in hotels and clubs for decades, but it will in effect hand the poker machine industry an enormous $250 million windfall … ”

UTG: Call for more ethical principles in politics - UTG releases A New Ethic … “It is very clear in today’s politics that the political parties do not adhere to any sets of principles – they act according to expediency or what they think will appeal to the media for that day. It is not even clear, for example, what the philosophical issues are concerning the poker machines. If ‘pokies’ are a social problem then, given that 2,300 problem gamblers* in Tasmanian indulge in four or more types of gambling then why isn’t all gambling the focus for reform?” “If the issue is the dominant control of pokies by one organisation or family, then that is another issue,” Dr. Holloway said …

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NATION: ‘One way or another, Barnaby’s cactus’ and Turnbull’s gov’t may be ...

Urban Wronski (aka David Tyler*) Pic*
22.02.18 5:15 am

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… As Jack Waterford, former editor of The Canberra Times writes, “The government has never narrowed the gap. At present rates, Aboriginals will remain the poorest, sickest, least employed and least educated group in the community 80 years from now – and still without a plan, as opposed to a vague hope and intention, to make it different.” Happily for the PM, there is a distraction. Poor, rich, white, boy, Barnaby, a lad who enjoyed a privileged upbringing, a St Ignatius College Riverview private school boy, - one of Sydney’s most expensive schools - who at home could roam Rutherglen an 1821 hectare farm estate, a New England University accountancy graduate who loves to play the battler from the bush is now acting hard done by. It’s all about soliciting free accommodation; favours from a mate …

… In true Nationals’ fashion, a mob of rugged if not roughshod individuals, whose contempt for bureaucracy matches its war with science and the environment, Barnaby decided to relocate the Australian Pests and Veterinary Medicines Authority (APVMA) from Canberra to Tamworth. It’s a cheap pork-barrel at a mere $26 million when you compare it with $10 billion for Joyce’s Inland Rail boondoggle which will never turn a profit either but which is also a nifty source of pork …

… The APVMA invites an advisory committee of 20 odd to stay, reports ABC Saturday AM. Of course, as public servants, all are parched and on the tooth and primed for wining and dining. My, how they enjoy a welcome dinner of prawns with kimchi, truffle oil risotto, New England lamb and sticky date sponge; great value at $80 per head. Our shout …

… The Ayatollah, as he was mocked at Goldman Sachs, the PM succeeds in suppressing Chief Economics Correspondent Emma Alberici’s heretical analysis of how tax cuts to business don’t stimulate jobs or growth.  One in five don’t pay tax for the past three years at least. Those who do, moreover, pay a seventeen per cent tax rate, on average …

Richard Ackland, Guardian: Michelle Guthrie, the ABC and the turning of a once-shining jewel into mainstream sludge All public broadcasters are engaged in a constant process of chopping, slicing and reinventing, and every boss spreads his or her own brand of unhappiness

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Regulars | Urban Wronksi | Politics | International | National | Economy | Editor's Choice | Opinion | History | Legal | Personal | Society | Transport

The Blue Sea ...

John Hawkins* Pic*: John Hawkins
22.02.18 5:00 am

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After her recent axing by Mercurius, the Roman god of financial gain, commerce, trickery and thieves, we offer a big welcome to our erection guru Windi who is visiting Van Diemen’s Land as the Tasmanian Liberal government’s senior advisor on tourism, bovine effluent and methane …

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Writers | John Hawkins | Politics | International | National | State | Forestry | Economy | Environment | Editor's Choice | Opinion | Legal | Society

Liberals new anti-protest laws doomed to failure!

Ted Mead* Pic: Bob Brown Foundation
22.02.18 4:45 am

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Desperate times call for desperate measures!  This is the egregious Hodgman government’s mantra at the moment as they just recently announced their intention to draft another legal bill to prohibit workplace forestry protests.  History shows us that with politicians consistent desire to suppress dissent, then this is destined to be another protracted and draconian process, which will probably be challenged all the way through the courts again … !

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Writers | Ted Mead | Politics | International | Local | National | State | Forestry | Economy | Environment | Editor's Choice | Opinion | History | Planning/Heritage | Legal | Society

Outrage over Oxfam investigations into paedophiles, sexual misconduct ...

Isla MacGregor* Pic*
22.02.18 4:29 am

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… use of prostitutes leading to staff dismissals, resignations and cover ups Yesterday’s news about NGO Oxfam’s 2011 internal investigation into allegations against some staff over sexual abuse, harassment and illegal use of prostitutes revealed a totally abhorrent culture within some elements of the world-renowned aid organisation …

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Writers | Isla MacGregor | Politics | International | National | Economy | Editor's Choice | Health | Opinion | History | Society

Save the Waratah Reservoir Dam ...

Bill Smith*
22.02.18 4:16 am

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What seems clear from last Tuesday’s (13.2.2018) ‘consultative’ meeting in Waratah is that TasWater, as an authority, have very little-to-no concept of community and social licence …

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The rise and fall of Hobart property values ...

Mal Graham*
21.02.18 3:15 am

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I would like to share with you the extraordinary rise and fall of real estate values in Hobart in just seven years …

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Plastic ...

Cartoon: Martyn Turner, used with permission
20.02.18 5:20 am

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Cartoon: Martyn Turner, used with permission

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‘TCT’s Fish Farm Election Policy Scorecard’

Peter McGlone* Media Release. Pic: Flickr
20.02.18 4:15 am

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The Tasmanian Conservation Trust has released a scorecard of the fish farm policies of the political parties and this week a copy of the scorecard will be delivered to 30,000 households in the electorate of Lyons …

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‘Review of Party Planning Policies’

Friends of the East Coast Media Release Pic: Flickr
20.02.18 4:00 am

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Friends of the East Coast Inc has reviewed the planning policies of the major parties for the forthcoming State Election …

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‘Community Energy to power the future’

Jack Gilding*, Anton Visktrom* Media Release. Pic*
20.02.18 3:45 am

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A gathering of community groups is today calling on all parties to support community renewable energy, the missing third sector between large scale wind and hydro and individual homes and businesses going solar …

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Tasmania’s Ailing Health System and Forestry Debt – It’s inextricably linked ...

Ted Mead* Pics*
19.02.18 4:30 am

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Let’s face it on all accounts the Tasmanian Health system is failing, and is not far from a real crisis scenario.  To those who are desperate for quality health care it probably comes as no surprise to hear that Tasmania has the worst public hospital system in the country. Everyone in the medical profession knows it is mostly due to the lack of funding, so why are our governments’ at the cost of public health, continuing to prop up the clinically-dead native forest industry to the sum of over $100 million per year … ?

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Writers | John Lawrence | Politics | International | National | State | Forestry | Economy | Environment | Editor's Choice | Health | Opinion | History | Planning/Heritage | Legal | Society

Removing Tasmania’s pokies would help gamblers without hurting the economy

Charles Livingstone* Pic: Michael Coghlan, Flickr
19.02.18 4:15 am

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Debate over poker machines is at the centre of the lead-up to this year’s Tasmanian state election. Labor’s promise to remove pokies from Tasmania’s pubs and clubs by 2023 if it wins government has been met with both praise and fierce criticism from lobby groups. Announcing the Liberals’ gaming policy recently, Premier Will Hodgman said: “Unlike Labor, we believe that Tasmanians should be able to choose how to spend their money, not be dictated to by the government … “

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Fifteen years after Iraq war protests, peace is further away than ever

Emily Thornberry, Guardian via John Tully. Cartoon: Martyn Turner, used with permission
19.02.18 4:00 am

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Jeremy Corbyn’s warnings on Iraq, Libya and Syria have proved terrifyingly right. And now Iran looks like the next battleground

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Cultural and Physical Genocide: The Kurdish Case in Turkey

Dr. Hussein Tahiri* via John Tully. Pic: Pic: of Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, Turkey's President
19.02.18 3:45 am

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Introduction Genocide is a systematic use of violence or oppression with the aim of physically eliminating or culturally destroying a social group. The savagery involved in physical genocide often attracts international attention whereas the use of cultural genocide over time often goes undetected …

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Taylor-made failing of local democracy

Tom Allen* Pics: Crowds at the candidates' forum
18.02.18 5:00 am

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Adriana Taylor, Huon Valley Council ‘Commissioner’ – ie, one-person Huon Valley Council – sat mostly in silence at the Huon Valley Rate Payers’ and Residents’ Association candidates’ forum at Huon Town Hall on Tuesday evening. But then she stood up and said something incredible: that local councillors were unnecessary …

… The second point was the issue of local democracy: a single person deciding the fate of the controversial project instead of nine councillors. Again, this was blithely dismissed. Taylor’s jaunty logic, such that it was, was that she would simply abide by the advice of the council planning department. As this, in her view, was simply what responsible councillors should do, she saw no difference in one person making this decision instead of nine democratically-elected councillors. Trouble is, she was wrong again. Good councillors will interrogate a proposal, ask for more information, reject some assertions, seek clarification – in short, do everything they can to assess, analyse and consider a proposal to ensure that it’s in the best interests of the local area …

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Huon mayoral wannabe picks at an old scab

Bob Hawkins* Pics*
18.02.18 4:45 am

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Huon Valley Guessing Games Some weeks ago, Mike Wilson — eternal valley mayoral aspirant — gave me a call, and, as is his wont, invited me to have a coffee. Having had a mug or two over the past decade, I agreed: although we might be at odds over many things about Huon Valley Council, I have always found him an affable, if not always credible, bloke with whom to chew the cud …

 

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Writers | Bob Hawkins | Politics | Local | State | Economy | Environment | Editor's Choice | Opinion | History | Planning/Heritage | Legal | Personal | Society

‘84% of Tasmanians want donations disclosed before the election’

Leanne Minshull* Media Release
18.02.18 4:30 am

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New polling ( HERE ) released yesterday by The Australia Institute Tasmania shows that voters want all parties to disclose the donations they have received before people go to the polls on March 3rd …

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‘Liberals bent on destroying college system ... ’

Peta-Maree Revell-Cook* Media Release. Pic: Flickr
18.02.18 4:17 am

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The Tasmanian Liberal Party’s education policy reveals a Government set on destroying the college sector, the AEU’s Secondary Colleges Committee of Management (SCCOM) …

Rebecca White: Labor will remove fees for students at all Tasmanian public schools

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Liberal health pledge cooks the books

Martyn Goddard* Pic: Flickr
15.02.18 3:35 am

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The Liberal Party has artificially inflated its election health package by over $200 million by including Commonwealth funding in its totals – but without saying so. The Labor package, nominally $560 million, does not include federal funding. But when the Liberals’ nominal $753 million spend is put onto equal terms, it is likely that the Labor policy is worth more …

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Writers | Martyn Goddard | Politics | National | State | Economy | Editor's Choice | Health | Opinion | History | Planning/Heritage | Legal | Personal | Society

NATION: Turnbull’s Joyce will cost him dearly ...

Urban Wronsk*i (aka David Tyler) Pic: Barnaby Joyce at an Adani protest ...
15.02.18 3:32 am

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… A salary of $191,000 for Vikki is now in the news. So, too is The Daily Telegraph‘s Miranda Devine writing about Barnaby telling his estranged wife, Natalie that Vikki is expecting a boy. “A dagger to Natalie’s heart.” Even Murdoch’s purple press has turned. 26 dud Newspolls plus one Barnaby fiasco may be too much for Rupert Murdoch. The Coalition’s major backer may be turning sour over Turnbull’s bungling ineptitude …

… In his own way, too, Turnbull’s Aussie icon Barnaby Joyce is a self-styled Cultural Warrior on his own crusade for moral decency. Why, he even fought against girls being inoculated with anti-HPV vaccine Gardasil lest it promote promiscuity. He opposed gay marriage claiming it went against traditional family values. Now look at him …

Fairfax: Barnaby Joyce’s career hangs in the balance

news.com.au: Is Prime Minister Turnbull responsible for the Barnaby Joyce scandal?

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Regulars | Urban Wronksi | Politics | International | National | Economy | Editor's Choice | Health | Opinion | History | Planning/Heritage | Legal | Society

Fragmented Review of Climate Change

Keith Antonysen* Pic: Mark Temby
15.02.18 3:31 am

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Munich Re 1 which underwrites Insurance Companies has indicated that 2017’s high costs for climate change are the “new normal” 2. It could be regarded as merely an argument to increase premiums; except, a number of climate parameters suggest otherwise. Carbon Brief provides a summation of situations which have progressed over time: 3 …

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Caring for humans ... as wildlife

Brandt Teale*
15.02.18 3:30 am

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Socially induced stress can be fatal for some people and an emerging branch of medicine explains why. But the revelation has come almost too late for a woman campaigning to give sufferers a suitable place in which to heal. Support worker and former Tasmanian journalist BRANDT TEALE tells her story . . .

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Writers | Brandt Teale | Environment | Editor's Choice | Health | Opinion | Society

Sea of Blue

John Hawkins* Pic*
15.02.18 3:30 am

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Mercurius, the Roman god of financial gain, commerce, trickery and thieves, bids welcome to the election guru Windi Ding who is visiting V. D. Land as the Tasmanian government’s senior advisor on how to lose the election …

… Readers, perhaps you have noticed the Sea of Blue surrounding every city, town and village as the visible evidence of the power of the gambling lobby to subvert the system while the Tasmanian born-to-rule strive to lower the bar using their clever new advertising slogan: Taking Tasmania to the next Level …

… Cynics say that this burning is designed to force those who cannot breathe, and the tourists, the undeserving poor and those addicted into those magnificent entertainment centres that are our Tasmanian pubs and clubs. If Hodgie and his team are to be believed our social fabric will completely implode without the $110 million a year so kindly donated by the players to the bandits when and if they are rounded up and shown the door …

Ted Mead Satire ...

ABC: Tasmanian poker machine licence holder Federal Group joins pro-pokies campaign

Ted Mead Satire: The new Lib-rals

Nick O’Malley, SMH: Sydney family takes 54 times more revenue than Tasmanian clubs from their pokies With the Tasmanian election becoming a battle over pokie machines, new research shows Tasmanian clubs keep just 0.9 per cent of their pokie revenue, while the Sydney-based family that owns a monopoly license over the machines in the state, keeps 49 per cent …

READ for yourself ...

The Australia Institute: Tasmanian club and pub pokies revenue: 0.9% to clubs, 48% to Farrell Group A report released today by The Australia Institute Tasmania written by Dr Charles Livingstone from Monash University has found that The Farrell Group’s share of EGM revenue (47.8%) far exceeds that of the clubs that house many of the poker machines, with the Farrell family reaping fifty-four times more than that derived by clubs which took just 0.9%. “The big winners from pokies in Tasmania are the Farrells, taking nearly half the net revenue,” Senior Lecturer at the School of Public Health and Preventive Medicine at Monash University, Dr Charles Livingstone said. “Clubs end up with less than 1% of the money that goes into the pokies. The Farrells take nearly half,” Livingstone said. Leanne Minshull, the Director of The Australia Institute Tasmania commented on the report: “The clubs and hotels are not getting much, and neither is the taxpayer. The Farrells a reaping $19.4 million more than the Tasmanian government … ”

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Writers | John Hawkins | Politics | International | Local | National | State | Forestry | Economy | Environment | Editor's Choice | Opinion | History | Planning/Heritage | Legal | Personal | Society

How much are they paying ... ?

Mal Graham* Pic: Hobart buildings ...
15.02.18 3:15 am

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A lot of the following properties are full of State and Commonwealth Government offices. I’m currently trying to find out just how much the Commonwealth and State Governments pay to lease office space in these buildings

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And this is a leading light in the battle to save pokies ...

Philip Ritchie*
14.02.18 4:55 am

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And this is a leading light in the battle to save pokies …

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‘Cable Car scandal a case in point – Tasmania needs robust planning laws’

Sophie Underwood* Media Release Pic*
14.02.18 4:50 am

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The revelations that the Hodgman Government secretly approved an ‘Authority’ for the Mt Wellington Cable Car Company to enter protected land on the summit of kunanyi/Mt Wellington to begin drilling as part of the controversial Cable Car project, just days before the State Election was called, highlights the lack of proper process and need for robust planning laws …

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Bugger off Barnaby ...

Bob Hawkins* Pic: Barnaby Joyce slopes off at an Adani protest ...
14.02.18 4:40 am

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Who does this political thug Barnaby Joyce think he is? Fresh from 13 years of defrauding the public purse by masquerading as an MP, he waltzes through the by-election he was responsible for, hops back into parliament (his visage glowing with all the rosy complexion of a bible-belt red-neck) and — oops! — it comes out that he’s pregnant, a delicate condition that I am certain he was fully aware of in December when he was on the hustings wooing the gormless voters of New England …

ABC: Barnaby Joyce corrects Army Reserve record after claiming he served for longer than he did

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Writers | Bob Hawkins | Politics | International | National | Economy | Editor's Choice | Opinion | History | Legal | Society

Mental health services are in crisis ...

Andrew Wilkie*, Speech in the Federation Chamber
13.02.18 6:00 pm

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Speech on mental health services in Tasmania ... … But in fact it’s being overlooked once again. Yes, both the Liberal Government and the Labor Opposition have promised they’ll boost mental health funding and open more beds. But while these are steps in the right direction, they simply don’t go far enough because it’s an undeniable fact that mental health services in Tasmania are in crisis and the Royal Hobart Hospital is bearing the brunt …

Andrew Wilkie: State Government misleading the community on cable car

ABC: Tasmanian election: Cable car works get green light before March poll called, documents show

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It’s all John Howard’s fault ...

Lindsay Tuffin*, Mike Seccombe*, The Saturday Paper, Virginia Trioli*, SMH
13.02.18 6:59 am

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It’s all John Howard’s fault. And Kim Beazley’s for going along with the Tampa incident of 2001 ...

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Writers | Lindsay Tuffin | Politics | National | Economy | Opinion | History | Society