Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Battleground of Ideas - Parliamentary Legend Has It

What really flatters a man is that you think him worth flattering.
-George Bernard Shaw, John Bull's Other Island

Labor's general-secretary, Sam Dastyari has claimed that on the eve of former premier Nathan Rees being dumped in favour of Kristina Keneally, Mr Torbay called him into his office. Mr Dastyari claims that the 51-year-old, who was parliamentary speaker at the time, pulled out $200 from his wallet and said he would join the party if he was given the job of premier, Fairfax newspapers reported on Sunday Torbay says Labor man's claims false ; Richard Torbay and his coat of many political colours

A truly diabolical craziness in NSW politics Keneally may pass ball to Botany Bay Mayor Ron Hoenig

I n a scene littered with MPs who have entered into polygamous political arrangements throughout their careers, the intrigue is astounding.

KRISTINA KENEALLY'S decision to quit politics has renewed tensions with her colleague Nathan Rees, who has described as ''fiction'' a claim that he apologised for labelling her a puppet of Joe Tripodi and Eddie Obeid. Ms Keneally, who as NSW premier led Labor to a historic defeat at last year's election, has announced she will leave politics to become chief executive of Basketball Australia. In an interview published yesterday, she was asked about Mr Rees's statement during her challenge for the leadership in 2009 that whoever replaced him as premier would be a ''puppet'' of the then Labor powerbrokers Mr Tripodi and Mr Obeid. Ms Keneally told her interviewer: ''Nathan has apologised, but in the end it is laughable and it has been utterly dispelled.'' But Mr Rees, who has wished Ms Keneally well in her new career, yesterday denied ever apologising for his comment. ''I note Kristina Keneally is reported today as saying I apologised for the 'puppet' remark. That is a fiction,'' Mr Rees said. In the lead up to the 2011 election, Mr Rees did a sudden about-face and publicly declared his support for Ms Keneally, but stopped short of recanting his ''puppet'' comment.

Rees stays firm on puppetry remark ; Swimmer Robertson wishes well Basketball player [Former NSW premier Kristina Keneally insists she doesn't feel any sadness about leaving politics. Keneally isn't sentimental about quitting ; THE US-born MP made history in late 2009 when she became the state's first female premier. Kristina Keneally's anger over being called Kim Kardashian ]

• · Obeid ; MEMBERS of the Obeid family, including the former Labor powerbroker Eddie Obeid, expressed interest in buying a Denman farm nearly three years before an Obeid family friend and financial adviser was granted a coal exploration licence over the property • · · A FRIEND and financial adviser to Eddie Obeid and his family, who had no mining background and a $1 company, won a coal exploration licence worth millions of dollars in a controversial tender run by the disgraced former resources minister Ian Macdonald ; In 2003, Mr Obeid's family acquired the three cafes from his former associate and Labor party donor Tony Imad for $2.4 million. But, on paper, the leaseholder was Mr Obeid's brother-in-law John Abood

• · · · Google ; Obeid told to pay $12m debt within seven days ; A Former IRS agent has been given a three year prison sentence for his part in an investment scheme that conned victims of More than $8 million

• · · · · Ex-Labour leader says he spends 'a fortune' on lawyers and accountants to make sure his business affairs are within the law Tony Blair insists that he does not avoid paying tax ; Barber: “Some people would say, ‘He loved power; he was right on top of the world for 10 years, and now he wants to be top of the world in business; he’s very competitive, Blair: “That is not true! That really is a lie; whoever is telling you that is lying. That is not true. Get me my lawyer! Get my expensive American lawyer.”
Barber: “So are you prepared to go on the record and say that you are prepared to pass to people so that they can score goals?” Blair: “I certainly am, partly because I was never very good at scoring them myself.”
Barber: “But you are very competitive.” Blair: “Look, I am very competitive.” Barber: “And you like making a lot of money … ” Blair (exasperated): “This notion that I want to be a billionaire with a yacht; I don’t! I am never going to be part of the super-rich. I have no interest in that at all.” Tony Blair: an exclusive interview

• · · · · · The twenty-first century is hectic. We live our lives at break-neck speed. We make snap judgements and decisions, which often harm us more than they help. Partnoy makes mincemeat of the idea of “thin slicing” – the art of making snap decisions based on very little information – that was made so popular by Malcolm Gladwell in Blink. He gives the delightful example of the international dating network It’s Just Lunch, which became successful by forcing its clients not to make bad snap decisions. Thus, it refuses to let them see photographs of possible partners and instead makes them eat lunch, a meal taking just the right amount of time for two people to work out if they want to see each other again. Nowhere in Wait is there anything as useful or liberating as something my economics tutor at university once told me: the more difficult a decision is to make – ie the more equally the pros and cons are stacked – the less it matters what you decide Therefore we should not wait. We should cut the dithering and get on with it. ; Legend has it that, during the Sydney Olympics, Bob Carr was caught reading Fyodor Dostoevsky's Crime and Punishment at the beach volleyball finals.

Work is a necessity for man. Man invented the alarm-clock. -Pablo Picasso (quoted by Janet Flanner in The New Yorker, Dec. 9, 1939)