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Lessons in democracy …

Iran held presidential elections on the 12 June with four names on the ballot but only two that mattered: Mahmoud Ahmadinejad (the incumbent), and Mir-Hossein Mousavi. With high turnout paralleled only by the growing anticipation for change – the official results were announced – a landslide win to Ahmadinejad. As the news broke tensions flared followed by broad public dissent, protests, accusations of fraud, and according to unverified reports the Grand Ayatollah Yousof Sanei has declared the elections unlawful and Mehdi Karroubi has stated that he does not recognise the election result. There are also suggestions that the supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei may be under threat. If there is something to learn here – it’s that even in a limited democracy, the people have a voice – one way or another.

For more on the emerging story:

Huffington Post : News : Iran Election
New York Times : World : Countries and Territories : Iran
Wikipedia: Iranian presidential election, 2009
Twitter : #iranelection

Images: TehranLive.org

714 Responses to “Lessons in democracy …”

  1. 601
    David Gould says:

    Fair enough.

    But would you say that having murderous dictators with nuclear bombs is:

    a) good or
    b) bad?

  2. 602
    Catrina says:

    David Gould at 601

    Have you stopped beating your mother?


    A better question would be if it’s a good thing for someone with a direct line to God to be playing with plastic buttons with shiny lights inside.

    Oh, wait, we had that already – GWB!

  3. 603
    David Gould says:

    That is my point. There is only one possible answer. Thus, it should be prevented. Now, if people believe that the Iranians are *not* going to try to get nuclear weapons, then that is fine. But I hope you can understand why I, who do think that they are going to try to get nuclear weapons, talk the way I do about possible military action.

    And, yes, I have stopped beating my mother. I am having lunch with her today, though, so I might start up again. ;)

  4. 604
    David Gould says:

    I would also argue that no-one should have nuclear weapons. The US having them is *not* an argument for Iran having them.

  5. 605
    Catrina says:

    David Gould at 604

    In this particular scenario – it’s not the US that is the issue – it’s Israel.

  6. 606
    David Gould says:

    In that case: Israel having nuclear weapons is not an argument for Iran having them.

  7. 607
    HarryH says:

    stop fantasizing about mushroom clouds and chastened Arabs and Persians David.

    It is getting repetitive.

  8. 608
    David Gould says:

    Yeah, HarryH, that’s what I’m doing …

  9. 609
    HarryH says:

    How many posts do you have to make essentially saying:

    Um, regretably, yeah regretably, Iran is going to need to be attacked and/or invaded.

    And it’s fairly easy to say, from your side of the fence, that “the U.S. and Israel having them is “NOT” an argument for Iran having them.”

  10. 610
    David Gould says:


    If you do not want to discuss it, you don’t have to; if you have a pertinent argument you want to make, you can make it.

  11. 611
    David Gould says:

    I would note that I put my position on this particular occassion in response to someone else putting the opposite position and raising a new argument for it.

  12. 612
    David Gould says:

    However, in the interests of harmony, I will not raise it again.

  13. 613
    Kirribilli Removals says:

    Can we get back to important stuff please, like, er, um, TailGate perhaps? LOL

  14. 614
    HarryH says:


    All i will say is that your 594 was uncomfortable to read. Especially from one who still supports the Iraq attack and invasion.

    But i understand that sometimes what comes across on paper when we hit “enter” isn’t necessarily what we intend.

  15. 615
    paddy says:

    Oh for God’s sake Kirri.
    How can you talk about such dreadful trivia as “tailgate”…..
    When Michael Jackson has just died!!!! :mrgreen:
    Get a grip man and concentrate on the *important* things in life.

  16. 616
    David Gould says:

    A post on climate change:


    I am hoping that the Democrats who are thinking of voting with the Republicans get some sense slapped into them.

  17. 617
    Enemuy Combatant says:

    * David, help me out here and go fidget with your Rubik’s Cube a spell, mate, while I dicuss you in the third person. Muchas gratias, comrade*

    Harry, Our Man in Canberra is quite an enigma. He comes on like a neocon, but reckons he votes Green. He’s a leading candidate for our highly sought after inaugural TAP Award (Ticster Anniversary Paddle), indeed, Gouldie’s a specialist in making heads hurt, however, over the year have grown quite fond of him. Not enough to get a room though! :mrgreen:

    * Ta awfully, DG, you can come out of your cage now. :) *
    Hussey, your canonization has been duly noted and entered into our annals.

    “Santa Hussey De Vermiformis…”

    “Ora pro nobis.”

  18. 618
    HarryH says:


    Saw a crawling message along bottom of screen on Sky/Coalition News earlier saying Jacksons death is bringing the same shock as Kennedy, Elvis and Di.

  19. 619
    David Gould says:

    Until this blog, I avoided politics blogs, having discovered that neither the left nor the right accepted me as on their team, so to speak. Discussions with raving homophobic creationists were always much more civil. But I like this place. :)

  20. 620
    HusseinStWorm says:

    DG, bare knuckle blogging isn’t for the faint hearted but you’ve been a trooper.

    Cat, did you record the live date on the ‘tic so we can mark this inaugural anniversary with much kind words to yourself for a sterling effort?

  21. 621
    paddy says:

    Glad I’m not the only one to realise the *extreme* gravity of today’s tragic news.

  22. 622

    “neither the left nor the right accepted me as on their team, so to speak. Discussions with raving homophobic creationists were always much more civil. But I like this place.”

    “One of us,
    One of us,
    We accept you
    One of us.”

    Ignore blondie’s reaction and the last 10 seconds, but I’m sure you get the drift, DG. :)



  23. 623
    paddy says:

    But I like this place. :)

    And we enjoy having you David. :mrgreen:

  24. 624
    Enemy Combatant says:

    Despite his blemishes, felt sad when I heard the news today.
    Track 4 (click to start) gives a take on another African-American who got to the top yet died owing a motza.
    Wonder how long before MJ’s goods and chattels are auctioned off to “defray his debts”?

    Mutha-fuckah could dance! Can’t take that away from him.

  25. 625
    Catrina says:

    HusseinStWorm at 620

    did you record the live date on the ‘tic so we can mark this inaugural anniversary

    Jul 9th, 2008
    Welcoming the AU/US Political Contingent

  26. 626
    Kirribilli Removals says:

    on Poss’s twitter:

    Reports of Michael Jackson having a heart attack are incorrect, he has been found in the children’s ward, having a stroke!

    …gotta say, it is, er, ah, very funny.

  27. 627
    Kirribilli Removals says:

    And yes Ecky, he was a sad and fucked up individual with a unique genius.

    Philip Larkin comes to mind:

    They fuck you up, your mum and dad.
    They may not mean to, but they do.
    They fill you with the faults they had
    And add some extra, just for you.

    But they were fucked up in their turn
    By fools in old-style hats and coats,
    Who half the time were soppy-stern
    And half at one another’s throats.

    Man hands on misery to man.
    It deepens like a coastal shelf.
    Get out as early as you can,
    And don’t have any kids yourself.

  28. 628
    HarryH says:

    627 Kirri

    Exactly sums up my feelings on Jacko.

    Excellent find.

  29. 629
    paddy says:

    Bloody hell you lot.
    Farrah needs some equal time.
    From the true and trusted keyboard of Guy Rundle in today’s Crikey.

    In the teenage bedrooms of the mind
    Everywhere today you’ll find
    The blutacked smash hits posters fading fast

    You were taping ‘off the wall’ off radio
    Or choking a quick one over Quatro
    When someone yelled that you’d be late for class

    So, old, you wake from reverie mid-whack
    To find that Jacko’s going back to black
    And an angel’s died of cancer in the a-se

    It’s a bad week for the mullahs
    But a worse one for the pullers
    When an angel dies of cancer in the a-se

    And so you think it’s all red rover
    Then the ute you ride flips over.
    Well you realise that Christ! The

    thing with nailing someone’s cronies
    When the emails turn out phony
    Is you come off looking like a shyster.

    But you’ve no real cause to kvetch
    If you were relying on a gretch
    And an angel got the big C in the keister

    And Wimbledon is over
    If there’s no more Sharapova
    And an angel got the big C in the keister

    Between sleep and waking all is pretty
    But dreams die in the Committee
    Plain as the nose that’s fallen in your glass

    Still, ride the blow-wave of history
    It’s not a thriller, it’s a mystery
    What will come to pass

    If you want to put it honestly
    Life’s less History than colostomy
    The posters all come down
    There’s voter riots in boogietown
    Truth? What is the truth?
    Only dogs ride backs of utes
    And we’re all going blind
    In the teeenage bedrooms of the mind

    When an angel dies of cancer in the a-se
    When an angel dies of cancer in the a-se.

  30. 630
    Enemy Combatant says:

    From the Archives of International Promiscuity, a special report, Ticsters.

    Calvin “Pants Man” Coolidge, a Republican President in the Roaring Twenties, was arguably the most potent satyr in the history of GOPperdom. Deadset uncontrollable away from the public view.

    (orright JFK and Bubba were Dem Potuses who couldn’t keep it in their pants, but Jimmy Carter was not noted for casting a roving optic because he ate too many peanuts as a child apparently)

    Maybe it’s the “chick-magnetism” of power or as Tony Montana so delicately put it to his best mate not long before blowing said mate away because he was balling Tony’s sister:

    “First you get the money, then you get the power, then you get the women!”

    Enchante, n’est-ce pas?

    “In biology, the term Coolidge effect describes the re-arousal of a male animal by the introduction of a new female. (applies equally from Alaska to Argentina)
    The term comes from an old joke according to which President Calvin Coolidge and his wife visited a government farm one day and were taken around on separate tours. Mrs. Coolidge, passing the chicken pens, inquired of a supervisor whether the roosters copulated more than once a day.
    “Yes,” the man said. “Dozens of times.” “Tell that,” Mrs. Coolidge replied, “to the president!”
    Some time later the president, passing the same pens, was told about the roosters – and about his wife’s remark. “Same hen every time?” he asked. “Oh, no, a different one each time,” the supervisor replied. “Tell that,” Coolidge said with a sly nod, “to Mrs. Coolidge.”






  31. 631
    paddy says:

    Interesting read.

    Frédéric Tellier: Iran’s tectonic shift
    The events that have roiled Iran since its highly questionable presidential election are the product of a perfect storm, the confluence of several crises that simultaneously have come to a head.
    Of these, the immediate electoral crisis might well be the least significant, insofar as it opposed two men – President Ahmadinehad and Mir Hossein Moussavi – who are less important that the array of forces that back them. More importantly, the events brought to the surface an old conflict that has now become unmanageable between the Islamic Republic’s two principal ruling factions. Their clash is nothing new, even if it was long ignored by Western policymakers single-mindedly focused on the nuclear issue.


  32. 632
    Kirribilli Removals says:

    Alert: Nerd Joke

    Stephen Long talked about various crazy indicators tonight on Lateline, and one was the Latvian Hooker Index, which, as it indicates, prices the rate of certain personal services in the Baltic region.

    Well, there’s also the more usual Baltic Dry Index, the rate of dry cargo shipping which is used everywhere for an indicator of economic activity.

    So now, Stephen Long has introduced us to the Baltic Wet Index!


    (I warned you! I really did!)

  33. 633
    paddy says:

    the Baltic Wet Index!
    Cough splutter!!
    Bugger you Kirri.
    That just sent a perfectly good glass of shiraz all over the floor.

  34. 634
    Catrina says:

    A tribute to the people on the street over in Iran delivered somewhat posthumously by Michael Jackson (and all you nasty boys out there – take a pause before you post).


  35. 635
    paddy says:

    Hmm..scrolling back over last night’s efforts.
    There certainly is an air of Liniment and the locker room about the place. Apologies to all.
    Time to switch back into adult mode.

    BTW Is anyone else having trouble accessing the ABC website?
    It’s 10’23 am where I am and I’m still getting this message.

    ABC Site Maintenance

    The ABC Website is currently unavailable and undergoing important scheduled maintenance. The complete site will be back online from 6:00am AEDT. In the meantime please read a selection of our latest ABC News stories below.

    Thank you for your patience.

    No big deal. But there’s also an old page up with this.

    Exchanges of fire puncture fragile Gaza truce
    Posted January 18, 2009 21:02:00

    Seems a bit strange.

  36. 636
    Kirribilli Removals says:

    Peter Hartcher in today’s SMH quotes an ex-leader:

    “I can honestly say I have never encountered anyone else like him in my life. He can read a balance sheet but he can’t read a human being,” Nelson has remarked privately about Turnbull.

    …the stories are all coming out, aren’t they?

  37. 637
    Catrina says:

    paddy at 635
    Everything seems to be back in order over on the ABC.

  38. 638
    paddy says:


    Ah thanks Cat.
    All up and running again here as well.

  39. 639
    Catrina says:

    Iranian Intelligence Ministry
    Informational Video for the people of Iran
    (watch it though to the end)

  40. 640
    Jen says:

    Is it really a whole year since we moved into our new home??
    And barely a stain on the rug – apart from paddy and my nasty habit of spurting wine all over the place – but mine’s white so not as bad.
    Well Ticksters, we haven’t solved all the world’s problems but we have put Obi in the whitehouse and added fuel to the self-immolating fire that that the Libs keep reigniting under their sorry arses. So while spoe aprts of thw world are in uproar others are settling quite nicely .
    And like DavidG I like it here.
    although frankly I always hated Michael J’s music .

  41. 641
    Jen says:

    spoe aprts of thw world..

    That in fact is meant to be ‘some parts of the world’.
    Sadly, after a whole year more of partipating on this site I still type like a mad woman. :roll:

  42. 642
    Catrina says:

    For everyone at Politic 101
    WARNING: watching *will* cause involuntary spasms of laughter!

  43. 643
    Jen says:

    642- gorgeous!!

  44. 644
    paddy says:

    Well I watched it through to the end Cat. Then dialled 113 to report my neighbour for being a PITA…..but it was engaged. :evil:

    As for 642…. :lol:

  45. 645
    Jen says:

    just realised i jumped the gun on the birtday-although i like`the idea of a 2 week celebration.

  46. 646
    Jen says:

    paddy -thanks for the firstdog link.
    i didn’t know, but apparently Michael Jackson has died.

  47. 647
    Jen says:

    which is ironic, as i was just saying earlier that i have never liked his music.

  48. 648
    Enemy Combatant says:

    Cat , the Iranian dob in your family mmbers for their own good has chilling overtones from uber-authoritarian regimes past.

    A deft contemporary response from Al- Greenies would be something akin to the end of Lawnmower Man where The People make all the Secret Police’s hotline dob phones ring simultaneously. Jam the lines a la DOS attacks on websites.
    Like this; on the hour, every hour, thousands of green armbanders call and dob in family members of the regimes’s enforcers. This would throw something of a spanner into their cyberworks as well as wasting time and resources on wild goose chases.

    The whole caper could be organised via Twitter.

    Also mass demos with participants all wearing Neda Masks (a la V for Vendetta) would not only provide anonymity, but would really fuck with the regime’s heads, especially when it hits Al-Jazeera and El Arabia. Every casuality would echo the barbarity of Neda’s cowardly execution and perhaps make many in the goon squads less inclined to slaughter their own citizens. Revolutions happen in hearts and minds before they spill en masse into the streets.

    Mind you, when a tool like Ahmadinejad whips up ongoing widespread hatred with his Holocaust denialism and demonization of Israel, we shouldn’t be too surprised when his handlers adopt tactics like “dob in your family”…. so favoured by the Stasi and before them, the Gestapo.

  49. 649
    Enemy Combatant says:

    Bloody hell, paddy, fancy shelving your Pita-head neighbours for not rising to the occasion.
    That’ll show them the importance of keeping up with the Croissants!

  50. 650
    Catrina says:

    Enemy Combatant at 648
    I think we have to recognise up front that the same thing is happening here but it’s just a little more sophisticated in it’s presentation – things like the adds of TV “I saw a suspicious website..” stuff.
    Having said that – what I found strange about the piece was the lack of message maturity – it just seems out of whack relative to the content coming from real Iranians.

  51. 651
    Jen says:

    650 Cat
    – and let’s not forget the disappearing cats ….something sinister is afoot here for sure.

  52. 652

    Yes, Cat , it’s pitched at dummies because perhaps only they would buy that giving up their own to the Secret Police was….. for their family members’ own good. Any tweaks of conscience the shelvers might have is salved by the promise of a light sentence if “wrongdoers” admit “the error of their ways”.

    Re the anti-terrorism hotline here, can’t recall any prosecutions for “home-grown” terrorism as a direct result. Pretty sure they were onto that little’league shit-kicker, “Mad Jack”, from W.A. from near the get-go and he wasn’t drawn to their attention by “information received”. Maybe not. Could check the court transcripts, I suppose. Most people I’ve spoken to about it saw the whole Howard fridge magnet fear campaign for the downscale gee-up that it was, although the legislation as you note, is still current.
    I don’t dismiss the threat of something major happening here, but think the “threat” is overblown to buggery. ASIO’s budget got a huge boost under Howard and their HR was ~doubled. Regardlees of weather our spooks and monitors of “The Lives of Others” are doing a good job, all who have sworn to uphold our freedoms are getting regular paychecks, perks and super in challenging economic times.

    Nice work if you can get it. Only trouble is; living with consequences of the inevitable Faustian moments that all handlers and field agents must “negotiate” in the course of duty.

  53. 653
    Catrina says:

    Cleaner, costlier climate bill slips past House
    Obama, Democrats face difficult test in upcoming Senate vote

    WASHINGTON – In a triumph for President Barack Obama, the Democratic-controlled House of Representatives narrowly passed sweeping legislation Friday that establishes the United States’ first limits on pollution linked to global warming and aims to usher in a new era of cleaner, yet more costly energy.

    The vote was 219-212, capping months of negotiations and days of intense bargaining among Democrats. Republicans were overwhelmingly against the measure, arguing it would destroy jobs in the midst of a recession while burdening consumers with a new tax in the form of higher energy costs.

    The legislation would require a 17 percent reduction by 2020 in carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gas emissions in the United States from 2005 levels and by about 80 percent by mid-century.


    Finally, Obama speaking to the subject of the legislation.

  54. 654
    Jen says:

    and Jacko is distractig the eyes of the world from the reportedly increasing violence in Iraq. Not the first time either..

    “It’s not the first time Michael Jackson has been accused of sucking up press coverage of more serious events. In a memorable comedy routine in 2004, comedian Dave Chappelle suggested that the Gloved One was working in league with President George W. Bush to distract from more politically explosive news.

    “Every time the war is going out of control, the economy is bad, and something is bad with the world at large, it’s always these moments in history that Michael Jackson will coincidentally [molest] a kid,” Chappelle told the audience.”

  55. 655

    SCENE: The office of the Iranian President, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. Dwarfed by the room’s dimensions and opulence, Mr Ahmadinejad sits at a huge, ornate desk, on one side of him a large cardboard box and on the other a pile of slips of paper. He takes a slip, scribbles on it and inserts into the box. His quiet, purposeful work is disturbed only occasionally by chanting demonstrators outside calling for his death, or when gunfire or stones smash a window pane.

    M. Ahmadinejad: 66,428,241.

    He writes another slip.

    MA: 66,428,242.

    He repeats the process a dozen times before stopping and shaking his writing hand, clearly in pain.

    MA: Ahmed! (He claps his hands twice in the air. Ahmed, an aide, opens a door and rushes in.)

    Ahmed: You called, Mr President?

    MA: Here’s another box full. This one’s from the city of … ahmm … (Squints at a map on the wall) Esfahan. Take it out to the tally room, will you? And bring me another carton when you get back. (Exit Ahmed with box.)

    Chris Henning: Above the infidelities of politics

  56. 656
    Jen says:

    and back at home Michelle Grattan tells it like it is…
    “By yesterday, Turnbull was still secure in the leadership, but for the negative reason that there is no one else…”

  57. 657
    paddy says:

    Also back at home. There’s a fine article by Tony Wright in The Age re:
    How the heck we’re going to feed ourselves as the population bomb goes off.
    There’s some scary figures in there that make me awfully glad I’m old as dirt and don’t have kids. :(
    What sort of toxic legacy are we leaving for the next generation?

    Whetting the appetite with the absurd while farmers wonder where we’ll find our next meal
    * Tony Wright
    * June 27, 2009
    AS THE subject of an old ute and a deceptive email engulfed Parliament and the nation’s media this week, hundreds of envoys from Australia’s heartland descended on Canberra, desperate to capture the ears of decision makers.

    You can be forgiven for not knowing this, yet all those hundreds of representatives of places beyond Canberra — mayors and councillors from across the nation — bore the real concerns of ordinary Australians, and a lot of their messages were much grittier than the fate of the mighty.

    One frozen morning, your correspondent was persuaded to journey through the dawn fog to breakfast at Parliament House with a group of these messengers from the beyond and was confronted with the most basic question of all: how are we to continue feeding ourselves? ….more.


  58. 658
    Kirribilli Removals says:

    Can the Oz stoop any lower than this hilarious compilation of names that have more degrees of separation from the PM than most of us do to a nematode. But hey, what’s a tenuous connection when you’ve got Utegate?

    This is so funny, it’s worth a geek:

    Ipswich Inc at heart of Utegate by Natasha Bita


    …you’ll be gobsmacked at how Ipswich is really the centre of corrupt power in Australia! LOL

  59. 659
    paddy says:

    Apologies if this has already been posted and I’ve missed it.
    Certainly worth a read.
    Iran’s debate over theocracy

    A debate rages about the nature of clerical rule

    THE Koran is the word of God, which every Muslim must follow, but its commands can be hard to interpret. So people should submit to the rule of a properly trained religious scholar. The idea is a simple one, and the father figure of Iran’s revolution of 1979, Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini, made it the central principle of his Islamic state.


  60. 660
    Catrina says:

    Alikhani’s Speech in Majlis in Support of Mousavi (English Subs)
    It’s a video of a speech inside the Iranian Parliament (sort of like our question time but with real passion about important things):

  61. 661
    Kirribilli Removals says:

    Who’s crying now? Well it’s poor old Truffles:

    Mr Turnbull complained that the government had it in for him from the start. They have called for him to resign and raised issues from Mr Turnbull’s past since the email affair broke.

    “All they have been flinging against me, in fact they’ve been doing it ever since I became leader, is one smear after another.”

    Mr Turnbull said the government had been “vicious and personal” in their “fear and smear” attacks on him.

    (The Oz)

    …oh, spare me!

    From all accounts, if there was ANYONE in the Liberal party that had even a modicum of leadership potential, Malcolm would be a hanging carcass.

    It’s a great testament to the Howard years, isn’t it? All they had was Peter Costello and he ain’t got the stomach for Opposition.

    Watching Truffles try to ‘stamp his authority’ is going to be funny now, eh?

  62. 662
    Enemy Combatant says:


    “TPM calls this “the latest installment in the Obama administration’s tendency to mimic the Bushies on war on terror tactics.” And the article itself points out the obvious: “Such an order would embrace claims by former president George W. Bush that certain people can be detained without trial for long periods under the laws of war.” Revealingly, the article quotes two Bush national security officials justifying the need for detention without charges.”

    Re political prisoners; the difference between “preventive detention” and “prolonged detention” is what exactly?

    POTUS 44, a former Professor of U.S. Constitutional Law, doesn’t give a stuff actually as long as such “throw away the key” barbarities are meted out “fairly and nonabusively”.
    “fairly and nonabusively” eh? Gotta love him when The Kid gets cute.

    Americans should recoil as one against the idea of preventive detention , imprisoning people indefinitely, for years and perhaps for life, without charge and without giving them an opportunity to demonstrate their innocence.
    And yet we’ve embraced it, asserting that there are people who are far too dangerous to even think about releasing but who cannot be put on trial because we have no real evidence that they have committed any crime, or because we’ve tortured them and therefore the evidence would not be admissible, or whatever. President Obama is O.K. with this (he calls it “prolonged detention”), but he wants to make sure it is carried out — here comes the oxymoron — fairly and nonabusively.


    The Rachel Maddow and Jon Stewart clips at bottom of Greenwald’s article are de rigeur viewing for unconditional Obamaphiles.

  63. 663

    Ute-gate: Police speak with Turnbull

    Federal police have spoken with Opposition Leader Malcolm Turnbull about the fake email affair.

    The police want to know who created the fake email, which indicated Prime Minister Kevin Rudd was seeking favours for a car dealer mate.

    The opposition knew about the email early and used it to point the finger at Mr Rudd.

    The attack backfired, leading to a horror week for Mr Turnbull.

    “I’ve met with the federal police, I’ve given them a statement,” Mr Turnbull told the Ten Network today.

    “Let the police do their work.”

  64. 664

    AdelaideNow: Liberal Party poll slump

    A NEW new poll shows the [South Australian] State Liberal Party faces virtual annihilation at the next election in the wake of the dodgy documents fiasco.

    Opposition Leader Martin Hamilton-Smith’s faltering grip on the Liberal leadership is under more strain with the Sunday Mail poll – conducted on Wednesday night – finding two-party preferred support for Labor has soared to 64 per cent and the Liberals’ has plummeted to 36 per cent.

    The massive gap between the major parties has opened up since the 56 per cent-to-44 per cent two-party preferred margin in a poll conducted by The Advertiser on March 16.

  65. 665
    Chris B says:

    Making the Internet work for you. Have a look at the way they are using the Internet in the USA. Firstly to identify lobbyists, then to help change peoples vote Turning The Camera Around: Health Care Stakeholders and Whip it! George Orwell would be smiling. I can see the use of the Internet in this manner being used everywhere. We are just a bit slow here.

  66. 666
    Catrina says:

    Aljazeera: Iran detains British embassy staff

    Iranian authorities have detained eight employees of the British embassy in Tehran, accusing them of involvement in post-election unrest in the Islamic Republic, the semi-official Fars News Agency has reported.


  67. 667
    Kirribilli Removals says:


    Hmm, how appropriate.

    Another ‘hostage crisis’ in the making?

    Well, it did work well for the first grand frommage Ayatollah, did it not?

    Looks like they might be trying a mini-me re-run!

  68. 668

    Sri Lanka astrologer is arrested

    The authorities in Sri Lanka have arrested a popular astrologer who predicted that the president will be ejected from office, police say.

    Chandrasiri Bandara announced last week that the government would flounder in September and October because of political and economic problems.

    The opposition have condemned the arrest and warned that the country is heading towards a dictatorship.

    Astrology is taken seriously by numerous Sri Lankan politicians.

  69. 669
    Catrina says:

    Thousands march in silent Tehran protest

    TEHRAN, Iran (CNN) — About 5,000 protesters marched slowly and silently through Tehran on Sunday near a mosque where the government was allowing a demonstration for the first time in days.


  70. 670
    Kirribilli Removals says:

    Turnbull has been mauled in the polls.

    What a surprise.


  71. 671
    Kirribilli Removals says:

    And over in the Oz, Shamaham:

    MALCOLM Turnbull’s political career has been smashed in just one week, and senior Liberals believe there could be moves within the party to remove him as Opposition Leader within days or weeks.

    After Mr Turnbull’s disastrous call for Kevin Rudd to resign over alleged preferential treatment for a car dealer and Labor donor, the standing of the Coalition and Mr Turnbull has slumped in polling, leaving him in an untenable political position.

    Senior Liberals said last night that if parliament had been sitting this week there would have been immediate moves to replace Mr Turnbull, probably with NSW frontbencher and Opposition Treasury spokesman Joe Hockey.

    …it’s time for….drum roll…..Joe the Plumbob !

  72. 672
    Kirribilli Removals says:

    A quick trawl of the press, and it’s Truffles on toast for the Liberal Party!


    And the funniest bit: the punters would prefer Costello by a mile!

    That was, without doubt, one of the most fascinating weeks in Oz politics. To watch Mal, self-immolate, in the parliament, in the media, was a sight to behold.

    And now, he MUST cut a deal on the ETS or Rudd will DD, or at least threaten to, and Mal cannot take the risk.

    He’s down, he’s wounded, and both the government and his own party stalkers, will run him down.

    Dead man talking.

  73. 673
    Kirribilli Removals says:

    Oh, Tehran’s march has turned nasty, just in the NYTImes:

    Witnesses in Iran say police have clashed with up to 3,000 protesters near a mosque in north Tehran.

    They say security forces fired tear gas to disperse the crowd, and some demonstrators fought back, chanting: ”Where is my vote?”

    Witnesses at the scene tell The Associated Press that some protesters claimed they suffered broken arms or legs in Sunday’s clashes around the Ghoba Mosque.

    They say some young demonstrators screamed at police and then attacked them after the officers allegedly beat an elderly woman.

  74. 674
    Catrina says:

    Followup to 669
    Iranian police clash with up to 3,000 protesters

    Riot police clashed with up to 3,000 protesters near a mosque in north Tehran on Sunday, using tear gas and truncheons to break up Iran’s first post-election demonstration in five days, witnesses said.

    Witnesses told The Associated Press that some protesters fought back, chanting: “Where is my vote?” They said others described scenes of brutality — including the alleged police beating of an elderly woman — in the clashes around the Ghoba Mosque.


  75. 675
    Catrina says:

    KR at 673 – snap

  76. 676
    Kirribilli Removals says:

    Yeah, Catrina, you’ve got to get up early to beat me! You were one minute too late!

  77. 677
    paddy says:

    Speaking of truffles on toast…….This page (esp the picture) is a fairly good summary of truffle’s week in Canberra. :lol:

  78. 678
    David Gould says:

    The brilliant ruthlessness of Labor. Love it.

  79. 679
    Kirribilli Removals says:

    DG, it could only have happened if Truffles carried on like a pork chop, and he obliged. When you accuse the PM of lying and ‘crony capitalism’, then expect the full force of front benches against you. If they hadn’t, it would have looked weak.

    (All over nothing anyway. So what if Swan held Grant’s hand for 2 minutes, FFS)

  80. 680
    Jen says:

    Michelle Grattan tells it again…(Kirri- you are showing a distinct lack of campassion for poor Malcolm :lol:)
    “More than twice as many people (37 per cent to 18 per cent) would prefer Peter Costello than Mr Turnbull as Liberal leader, despite Mr Costello already announcing he will not run for another term. Shadow treasurer Joe Hockey, on 21 per cent, is also outshining Mr Turnbull as preferred opposition leader, with Tony Abbott on 10 per cent. Pressure is also mounting on Mr Turnbull to cut a deal on emissions trading. In the Age poll, about two-thirds support the Government’s scheme, and legislation for a similar scheme has now passed the US House of Representatives.”
    Labor has it in the bag as a DD would be Definite Demise for The Libs – oh glorious days :lol: :lol:

  81. 681
    David Gould says:

    Oh, yes. But Labor have had all this up their sleeve since Turnbull looked like a leadership contender. They were just waiting for the moment to strike with it. He gave them the moment, all right.

    It has shown to the public that Rudd is actually one tough hombre. I do not think that that is going to hurt. The public likes ‘strong leaders’.

  82. 682
    David Gould says:

    I do not think that the Liberals will provide them with a DD opportunity. If they do, then they are dumber than a group of very dumb people doing a very dumb thing.

  83. 683
    Jen says:

    Also love it that even when they are down to scraping the slime off the bottom of the barrel Abbott STILL only polls at 10 percent :mrgreen:
    Jasper the cat would do better that – if he wasn’t in protective custody. :cool:

  84. 684
    Kirribilli Removals says:

    Ah, sweet Jasper, may he live out all his nine lives (unmolested by Truffles!) LOL

    Turnbull now has the impossible task of cutting a deal on the ETS while holding his fractious party together while they, presumably, look for a leader who doesn’t have the curse of Makr Latham upon him/her.

    He’s in no man’s land politically.

    This is deliciously sweet, after all the years of that Howard worm wedging his way to success. To see the Liberal party so gutted, so bereft of leadership, with an injured captain and rebellious crew, it must make the Ruddmeister smile.

    And of course, we are still to find out the gory details of just how hard Truffles stamped on the wretch Grech to cough up the ‘evidence’.

    That will be something, eh?

  85. 685
    Kirribilli Removals says:

    David Gould

    It’s so funny now, to watch Turnball vaulting razor blades! As you say, he dare not give Rudd the trigger, but how in hell does he get that rabble to vote of the ETS?

    There’s Barnyard (over my cold dead body) Joystick just for starters.

    I can’t wait to see Truffles try to save his skin on this issue.

    And by the way, the polls did exactly what I suspected, and mauled Mal. Anyone carrying on like a pork chop, over such a crappy issue of no financial import, who then messes up so monumentally, is spurned by the punters. They won’t forget it for a long time either.

  86. 686
    David Gould says:

    Well, Turnbull has no choice but to ignore the National Party on this issue. One of the things he could do would be to allow a conscience vote on it. That way, it would pass, as there are enough climate change believers in the Liberals to get it through, but the deniers would get their day, too. Thinking about it, that is what I would do. I think the benefits outweight the negatives re division.

  87. 687
    Jen says:

    This is as much fun as watching GB getting shoes thrown at him. The libs are truly busted – no one can lead them (or would want to, surely). Cossie must be on his knees thanking the gods that he got that announcement in early or he would have been virtually obliged to pick up the poisoned cup. Abbott stinks so badly that it would be certain obliteration and Hockey = Workchoices. The Bishop twins are both repugnant in theiriown ways and sophie, (ah, bring it on…) represents all that teh electorate despised about Howard – finally.
    So, there’s only one answer – Bring Back Dolly !!!

  88. 688
    David Gould says:

    Christopher Pyne? ;)

  89. 689
    Jen says:

    Oh Yes DG!!! Fantastic idea – really it just gets better and better :lol: :lol:

  90. 690
    Jen says:

    Or… maybe they should try and co-opt Senator Fielding and they’d get his 1.8% which would surely give them the best chance they’ve got
    (oh my poor splitting sides)

  91. 691
    paddy says:

    Jen Says:

    Bring Back Dolly !!!

    Egads!! Wash your mouth out Jen. :mrgreen:
    Clearly, the opposition needs a “statesmanlike” figure to fill the gaping hole in their front bench…….
    Vote 1 Phillip Ruddock.
    (ducking, running and swiming away as fast as I can)

  92. 692
    Jen says:

    paddy – you can run but you can’t hide :cool:
    God, isn’t this great – every name anyone suggests sounds like a total joke – cos it is !

  93. 693
    Jen says:

    Actually paddy – that may explain why Phil was on Chasers teh other night doing a bit of the
    “see, I really do have a GSOH and can laugh at myself and am not really a mean-spritied racist who likes to ensure children suffer permanent damage as a result of my barbaric policies, kinda- guy”.
    Fuck him.

  94. 694
    Flaneur says:

    Last week, Phillip Ruddock was given a guernsey during Question Time, *and* he appeared on The Chasers…

    His blood is up (making it nearly luke warm) and is making a run I tells ya! Or about to retire.

  95. 695
    Flaneur says:


  96. 696
    Jen says:

    you get to do ! as well Flanners

  97. 697
    Chris B says:

    The Prison Dancers tribute to Michael Jackson.

    If you have seen the original Jail House rock.
    They have gone from one of the most violent prisons, to zero violence.

    I wonder if Australia and USA will learn from this?
    My source was the ABC Foreign Correspondent.
    They showed the prison on a Family day where families came in and strolled around as if it were a Sunday picnic.

    There is a You Tube video that tells a story the opposite to what Foreign Correspondent told.

  98. 698
    Chris B says:

    683 Jen The next step after a cat killing, is a serial killer!

  99. 699
    paddy says:

    Stuff the moonwalking corpse.
    Catch a blast from the ghost of leaders past by the *real*
    First citizen of the moon. :)

  100. 700
    Jen says:

    CB- too true :lol:

    Oh paddy – would you stop!! so little wine and so much staining of rugs