A Grub: Laurie Oakes On Alan Jones

Channel 9’s political reporter Laurie Oakes made his view of Alan Jones clear in this television discussion with Karl Stefanovic.



Craig Thomson Says He Was Set Up

Craig Thomson has defended himself against allegations of misuse of union funds in an extraordinary interview with Laurie Oakes on Channel 9.

Thomson claims threats were made against him in 2004 that he would be set up with “hookers” to “ruin my potential political career”.

He argues that other members of the Health Services Union had knowledge of his credit card and driver’s licence numbers. He says “proof of a phone call is not proof of who is on the end of the phone…cutting right through it, Laurie, it was not me.”

  • Listen to Thomson’s interview with Oakes (18m)

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Laurie Oakes Wins Gold Walkley For ALP Leaks Stories

The Channel 9 journalist Laurie Oakes has won this year’s Gold Walkley award for his coverage of the ALP leaks during the election campaign.

The first leak was used by Oakes in a question to Prime Minister Julia Gillard at the National Press Club on July 15.

  • Listen to the question and Gillard’s response

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  • Listen to Oakes’s speech of acceptance at the Walkley Awards presentation night

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Day 12: Peril

There was no mistaking the danger the Gillard government faced yesterday.

That there is someone inside the government, someone “close to home”, who is leaking damaging allegations to the media, brought intrigue and treachery to the election campaign. It wreaked havoc with the political messages Labor has been transmitting for the past two weeks.

The allegation that the Prime Minister spoke out in Cabinet against pension increases and the parental leave plan fed into the most damaging impression of all, that she is not what she seems.

It is especially dangerous because it’s the very same allegation that hovered around Kevin Rudd before Gillard deposed him a month ago. [Read more…]


The Narrative: Week Two Begins

If a weekend can be said to start on Friday morning, this past weekend began with Julia Gillard throwing away whatever credibility she had left on the issue of climate change. It ended with a poll showing Labor leading the coalition by 52% to 48%.

Gillard’s speech at the University of Queensland on Friday morning to announce a revised climate change policy had been eagerly awaited. Everyone knew that Rudd’s poll numbers had dropped almost instantly he dropped the Emissions Trading Scheme last April.

At any other time, her announcement of a raft of measures to promote renewable energy and to halt the building of new coal-fired power stations might have been well received. [Read more…]


‘Moving Forward’, Gillard Addresses Press Club; Laurie Oakes Steals The Show

As speculation about an early election continues, the Prime Minister, Julia Gillard, addressed the National Press club today. [Read more…]


Howard Rejects Call For Royal Commission On Intelligence Services

The Prime Minister, John Howard, has rejected a call by a senior security official, Lieutenant Colonel Lance Collins, for a Royal Commission into Australia’s intelligence services.

In a letter to the Prime Minister, John Howard, leaked to The Bulletin magazine, and reported tonight by Laurie Oakes on Channel 9 news, Collins alleges a long list of intelligence failures:

“Iraqi weapons of mass destruction, delay in the (Willie) Brigitte case, warning of the Bali bombing, breakdown of order in the Solomons … the independence of East Timor, death of an intelligence officer in Washington, resumption of Indian nuclear testing, fall of Suharto, the media-reported Indonesian capture of an ASIS officer, the Sandline affair and the testing of sarin nerve agent on an Australian farm by a Japanese religious sect”.

The Prime Minister said tonight that he will provide Lt. Collins with a detailed reply, but rejected the call for an inquiry. [Read more…]


Laurie Oakes, Cheryl Kernot And The Unreported Story

For some years now, Australian media outlets have refused to report widespread rumours concerning the private life of Cheryl Kernot.

KernotThis claim is made by Laurie Oakes in an article in today’s edition of The Bulletin.

Oakes refers to the publication this week of Kernot’s book, Speaking For Myself Again, a title the veteran Canberra journalist says should be Making Excuses For Myself Again. [Read more…]


Howard and Costello in Conflict as Republic Referendum Hots Up

The battle between monarchists and republicans has taken a new turn as Howard government ministers adopt increasingly belligerent positions for and against the referendum due on November 6.

The Prime Minister, John Howard, issued a major statement to his Bennelong constituents earlier this week outlining his arguments against a republic.

This was followed by a speech from Treasurer Peter Costello that rebutted Howard’s argument point by point. [Read more…]


Abbott And Costello Defamation Action

This is the full text of the Judgement by Mr. Justice Higgins in the Abbott and Costello defamation action against Random House, publishers of “Goodbye, Jerusalem”, by Bob Ellis.

The Hon. Peter Howard Costello and Tanya Pamela Costello v Random House Australia Pty Limited

and

The Hon. Anthony John Abbott and Margaret Veronica Abbott v Random House Australia Pty Limited

[1999] ACTSC 13
Defamation


IN THE SUPREME COURT OF THE AUSTRALIAN CAPITAL TERRITORY

HIGGINS, J

File nos – Nos. SC 224 & 228 of 1997

No. of paras – 469

CATCHWORDS:

DEFAMATION – Publication of defamatory matter – False allegations of shallow political commitment and lack of chastity – Whether matter capable of conveying alleged imputations – Test of ordinary reasonable reader – Natural and ordinary meaning to apply – Mere speculation of reader not relevant – Whether inferences defamatory in fact – Whether ridicule of plaintiffs’ political commitment defamatory in fact – Whether allegation of lack of chastity defamatory in fact – No requirement for special damage where allegation of unchastity – Standard of middle class morality to apply – Imputations held defamatory.

DEFAMATION – Publication of defamatory matter – True innuendos – Whether extrinsic facts sufficient to convey alleged true innuendos – Innuendos held not to arise.

DEFAMATION – Compensatory damages – Extent of damage to reputation where plaintiff is public figure – Whether damage mitigated by defendant – Extent of injury to feelings – Whether aggravated damages appropriate – Whether defendant’s conduct unjustifiable, improper or lacking bona fides – Aggravated damages awarded.

[Read more…]