Royal Commission thread: May 15, 2014

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348 Responses to Royal Commission thread: May 15, 2014

  1. Vicki

    “With the benefit of hindsight, was this home insulation rushed?”

    A simple enough question.

    Poor Potts. He’s a pretty good criminal lawyer, apparently. But he’s not going to get a useful answer from this strange, strange man.

  2. Gab

    Rudd is being far too clever and cocky.

  3. H B Bear

    As others have observed, one thing Rudd did was disabuse people of the idea that somehow the Commonwealth was more competent to deliver government programs than the States.

    That is an important outcome of his failures.

  4. val majkus

    Rudd never stopped the HIP after the first man died. Nor did he stop it after the second man died. Nor did Rudd stop the HIP after the third person died. Nor did he stop it immediately after the fourth person died.

    and he gave as a reason the light did not change to red; that’s the bottom up system of management
    from my understanding he says that’s the way the process worked at the relevant time

  5. bystander

    Jeez, Brett Walker looks like he is having an enjoyable time listening to his client.

  6. Vicki

    Rudd is being far too clever and cocky.

    The defence mechanisms of a narcissist are almost unassailable. That is why is persists with this unending verbal garbage.

  7. val majkus

    I repeat

    it should not require a change from green or amber to red for the Govt to accept there may be a problem when the first young man died;
    in Rudd’s version the top waited to be alerted to any probs from the bottom
    that’s not a way to manage because in the first instance it requires a degree of assessment from those below
    But Rudd’s way would be the bureaucratic way and he has been a career bureaucrat
    The CEO way is to manage from the top down and that’s more hands on and more action positive I would have thought

  8. Rabz

    “Speaking as a human being*, nothing affects you more fundamentally than to see young people die in industrial accidents.”

    What an extremely odd statement.

    *and not as an utterly preposterous facsimile of one

  9. A summary of Rudd’s several hours of testimony:

    I am extremely clever but, since I’m so wonderfully modest, I shan’t claim any more that wondrous wisdom; for all the faults of my hastily planned schemes, they saved Australia, if not all of mankind, from the global financial crisis; I am too kind to lay blame on other, lesser ministers who were really responsible for all difficulties apart from those mistakes made by the wonderful public servants whose incompetence I shall never mention—for example, I shan’t criticise Garret, whom I esteem as a bloke, since I replaced him with Combet not because Garrett knew little of OH&S but because Combet knew a whole lot more—; in short, I am deeply moved by any tragic death so I take full responsibility insofar as I will always loudly and publicly say sorry for unfortunate past actions without actually making any sacrifice or doing anything else to atone therefor.
    I done nothing wrong.

  10. Anne

    Lawyers, please…

    Is there ANY chance he’ll get jail time?

  11. Delta A

    Thanks again, Cats, for the expert and informative posts today. (Not to mention the snappy, sesquipedalian repartee.)

  12. Gab

    “Speaking as a human being*

    Sociopaths cannot relate to normal human emotions and do much to study the language appropriate to emotions and, in a sense, to convey the correct emotion or verbal response themselves. That is to say, they are clever at mimicking an appropriate response.

  13. Pickles

    Brettles is trying to figure out if at $20k a day babysitting this pasty little grub is worth the pain of listening to him. And if his nails need a buff.

  14. Baldrick

    Is there ANY chance he’ll get jail time?

    You’re kidding Anne, surely. The way TA’s going he’ll end up giving Rudd a knighthood.

  15. Grigory M

    Is there ANY chance he’ll get jail time?

    Probably not. It’s a pity we cannot apply the December 1989 Romanian style of justice in this instance.

  16. Vicki

    Sociopaths cannot relate to normal human emotions and do much to study the language appropriate to emotions and, in a sense, to convey the correct emotion or verbal response themselves. That is to say, they are clever at mimicking an appropriate response.

    Absolutely Gab.

    Many would say he is a classic eg of someone with NPD (Narcissistic Personality Disorder). But this is also commonly known as a Sociopath.

  17. val majkus

    Is there ANY chance he’ll get jail time?

    not from these proceedings

  18. cohenite

    Is there ANY chance he’ll get jail time?

    Well he is trapped in his own body. True justice would make him aware of that. Normal incarceration is not going to happen to this man who has overseen the deaths of hundreds of people.

  19. Rabz

    It’s a pity we cannot apply the December 1989 Romanian style of justice in this instance.

    Speaking as a human being (and not as a cardboard box), I concur.

  20. Gab

    Is there any chance the families can sue Rudd via a civil suit?

  21. Vicki

    Potts can’t even look at him anymore & is turning away.

  22. val majkus

    Is there any chance the families can sue Rudd via a civil suit?

    that’s an interesting thought Gab; through one of those no win no fee (and add no disbursements) firms
    what do others think?

  23. entropy

    The taxpayer would end up paying any civil damages

  24. Gab

    For a man who was the prime minister at the time and gave the go-ahead for the pink batts scheme, he sure know nothing about any aspect of it.

  25. Steve of Glasshouse

    So, how come no-one was signing today for the hard of hearing ? Then again, what is the sign term for prolixity?

  26. H B Bear

    Is there any chance the families can sue Rudd via a civil suit?

    No. Not even remotely.

  27. coz

    I could be wrong but I think Garrett had never had a job (prior to being selected for a safe seat) apart from music biz, so he would have no experience of office procedures or any other kind of work.

  28. Grigory M

    “I have no familiarity with” is the new “I don’t recall”.

  29. David

    I watched it live for a while. I had forgotten what a verbose, evasive little shit he was – bugger it I am now back to square one in the forgettery process.

    On the other hand we should never forget the little scumbag as we all know the saying about those who do not learn from history.

    Off topic but the 18C dismemberment has gone quiet – I hope the bastards currently in “gummint” are not going to go back on that one as well.

  30. johanna

    Des Deskperson
    #1306942, posted on May 15, 2014 at 4:26 pm

    ‘ for public servants, a quick transfer to the War Graves Commission.’

    The two Environment ‘workers over the weekend’ were promoted. Mary Wiley Smith who was an acting SES band 1 at the time, is now a substantive Band 1. Beth Bronoro, a Director at the time (EL2, I assume) is now also a substantive SES Band 1. This may, of course, be another example of the public service version of voodoo, namely ‘if, when a project is a success, people get promoted, then if the people got promoted, the project must have been a success’.

    OMG. So Wiley Smith was only a substantive EL2 at the time? That is the equivalent of asking a branch manager at the NAB or ANZ to provide urgent advice about a possible takeover, without telling anyone, over the weekend.

    The question is, why did they pick her? There would have been many people, not least her Division Head (boss), better placed to do the job.

    And now she has been promoted for taking one for the team. What a fucking shambles.

  31. Anne

    Is there ANY chance he’ll get jail time?

    “You’re kidding Anne…”

    “not from these proceedings”

    “Probably not.”

    “Well he is trapped in his own body.”

    So…NO! . Bugger!

    Well, maybe it will raise awareness that people with personality disorders should not be allowed access to power.

  32. Pickles

    Joanna you just typed the f word. It’s a slippery slope when the Sheilas start talking like they’re hanging off the rails trying to fill a book for Borthwicks.

  33. Leo G

    “Speaking as a human being*, nothing affects you more fundamentally than to see young people die in industrial accidents.”

    A non-sociopathic human being would be more fundamentally affected by deaths of young people when responsible for the deaths.

  34. Notafan

    On the radio news just now they said Rudd took full responsibility

  35. Grigory M

    So Wiley Smith was only a substantive EL2 at the time?

    The question is, why did they pick her? There would have been many people, not least her Division Head (boss), better placed to do the job.

    Yeah, substantive EL2, but Acting SES 1 – and therefore taking responsibility at the higher level. Others, including her then boss were actors too – very common in the public sector. Why did they pick her? Maybe she was a kindred spirit Labor person with contacts in PM&C, a self promoter with a fix-it reputation (lots of those in the public sector, too) – they came directly to her, didn’t go through her boss – and she didn’t tell her acting boss and others very much in those emails. Sure, she puts a different slant on things in her statement – but who’s to know what the real situation was?

  36. Denise

    bystander
    #1306978, posted on May 15, 2014 at 4:46 pm

    Jeez, Brett Walker looks like he is having an enjoyable time listening to his client.

    He’s happy ‘cos he’s feeling the same way a taxi driver does, late afternoon, waiting outside a pub, meter ticking, and his client the town drunk inside. Zippety doo dah, zippety day…

  37. harrys on the boat

    Jail him.

  38. harrys on the boat

    Actually no, jails too good. Strung up from the nearest lamppost.

  39. kae

    Rudd said, paraphrased:

    “I am ultimately responsible for the tragedies of the Batts scheme…. but public servants and Mark Arbib.”

    Weasel.

  40. kae

    kaboom, if you’re watching – so am I!

  41. MT Isa Miner

    Des Deskperson

    #1306942, posted on May 15, 2014 at 4:26 pm

    bye the bye, I don’t mean ALL public servants are bastards, Des. I’m sure most are but I’m sure a few are flying false flags :)

  42. Docket62

    Jail won’t serve any purpose to Rudd. Simply put him in a room, tell him the UN is being disbanded and he is no longer required, and then tell him his entire wife’s fortune has been confiscated under proceeds of crime. Fairly certain you’ll need a large bucket.

  43. Delta A

    Alternatively, Docket62, put Rudd alone in a room without a mirror or a hair-dryer.

  44. Rudd should simply have told the truth – which is that these young men were killed by irresponsible spivs, motivated by the worship of the almighty dollar. Market fundamentalism is as deadly as militant Islam.

  45. Oh come on

    Market fundamentalism is as deadly as militant Islam.

    That’s impressively stupid and offensive even by your standards, Numbers. Well done!

  46. Delta A

    That’s it for this thread. Can’t stand the smell when numbers comes sniffing around.

  47. Docket62

    Oh I don’t know, there’s value in strapping 3KG of trinitrotoluene to K Rudd and asking him to attend labour cabinet.

  48. Notafan

    Was it a market or rivers of government money?

  49. kae

    Hmm

    Echoes brings back some memories.

  50. wreckage

    Was it a market or rivers of government money?

    Precisely. More accurately with reference to his own example, Numbers might have said “Huge government expenditure is as dangerous as militant Islam”. It was only upon commencement of the big government spend that disabled kids got press-ganged into ceilings with grotesque haste and a lack of proper oversight.

    The steady run of the insulation industry “river” turned into a flash flood, with disastrous results.

    Actual businessmen and women with networks of obligation within their own communities were crowded out by crooks and spivs and an unaccountable government. And suddenly, Numbers, who has suffered all these years, all these terrible years, from the unaccountability of our ruling class, is defending them! Demanding that not only do we all kow-tow in spite of their culpability, but that we hand every aspect of our life and work into their hands to run as they see fit.

    The proprietor of the local servo didn’t send you to ‘Nam, Numbers. Profit didn’t. GOVERNMENT DID.

  51. Oh come on

    Numbers might have said “Huge government expenditure is as dangerous as militant Islam”

    Now I can certainly get behind that. In fact, I’d say huge government expenditure has the potential to be far more dangerous than militant Islam.

  52. Tel

    I could be wrong but I think Garrett had never had a job (prior to being selected for a safe seat) apart from music biz,

    I seem to remember he was a lawyer for a while so it makes sense that he ended up in Parliament sooner or later. No idea how his legal career went, nor what he did exactly.

  53. “GOVERNMENT DID” – absolutely – government like the government we have now. A government in thrall to vested interest, corporate fascism and the cowardly arrogance of those who believe they have a divine right to rule.

  54. entropy

    The irony, oh, the irony

  55. cohenite

    And out slinks numbers;

    Market fundamentalism is as deadly as militant Islam.

    Yeah I can just see Gina and fat arse Palmer going around beheading people.

    Kudos for saying Islam is deadly numbers; and a big kick up your bony arse for being redundant and saying militant when islam is inherently militant and ignoring the fact that the treasonous left is directly responsible for Islam’s inroads into the West.

  56. On the radio news just now they said Rudd took full responsibility

    Well, Notafan, he said that he “took full responsibility” but, as I intimated earlier, did nothing else. It’s easy to say things (for instance, I hereby take full responsibility for the Roman defeat at Cannae and the crash of the R101). Rudd, however, has done nothing substantive to shew contrition, such as donating personal funds to the families of victims, or volunteering as an OH&S officer on weekends, or telling the complete truth, or ensuring that we never again have such an incompetent ministry…

  57. wreckage

    corporate fascism

    No such thing; fascism reverses the relationship you’re implying. Because businesses, left to themselves, don’t wage wars.

  58. Docket62

    @numbers:
    “government in thrall to vested interest, corporate fascism and the cowardly arrogance of those who believe they have a divine right to rule.”

    A wonderful description of K Rudd, Gillard et al, and the entire labor caucus.

  59. Notafan

    I know it Deadman, I just liked how it was reported in comparison to what was being blogged here during the day.

  60. Notafan

    BER, Pink Batts and Green Audits scammed from top to bottom, no doubt.

  61. Splatacrobat

    Rudd should simply have told the truth – which is that these young men were killed by fiscally irresponsible spivs lefties, motivated by the worship of the almighty dollar Gaia.

    FIFY

  62. Delta A

    Oi, Splat, have you no shame, puffing on that cigar like a spiv while pensioners are choking to death on their fiscal belts.

  63. one thing Rudd did was disabuse people of the idea that somehow the Commonwealth was more competent to deliver government programs than the States.

    Its place in this is when all the states agree that a particular program is what they need. It’s far easier and less confusing then for a single authority to run the whole show.

  64. Jessie

    Queensland Officer of the Coroner
    Findings of Inquest
    108 pages

  65. Jessie

    Office of the State Coroner

  66. Jessie

    Department of Climate Change and Energy Efficiency, any mention in RC coverage?

  67. iamok

    This guy is typical of someone who uses all the words and when it all boils down has absolutely no understanding of anything he is saying. He is a prime bullshit artist. FOFG, that’s for good.

  68. rafiki

    “no understanding of anything he is saying”.
    yes. At one point he said he was ‘making an inference’ and not stating a definitive conclusion. This is sheer nonsense. Some conclusions – such as a finding of guilt – are necessarily inferences drawn from a range of facts. This is illustrative of his almost endemic incoherence.

    I felt sick watching his performance. And puzzled that the Commissioner did not tell Rudd to cut down his answers and avoid attempts at humour. My hope is that the Commissioner’s thinking was that if Rudd were left to run on, listeners would more clearly see just what a shit is KRudd.

  69. iamok

    I absolutely cannot cop this creep. I applaud you who have watched on behalf of the common good. If Rudd arrived at my house, and I had no other choice, I would leave post haste.

  70. Zulu Kilo Two Alpha

    If Rudd arrived at my house, and I had no other choice, I would leave post haste.

    Glad you ruled out no other choice. Setting the dogs on Rudd has a certain appeal.

  71. wreckage

    Cruelty to animals, ZK2A. Likely to give them digestive trouble at best, brain damage at worst.

  72. manalive

    Rudd is purported to be proficient in Mandarin although I’ve read somewhere that to a native speaker he sounds like an elevator announcement.
    His real language specialty is officialese or bureaucratese aka ‘cancer of the language’.

  73. 1735099

    Scores of Australians were killed and hundreds maimed in the barrier minefield debacle.
    Royal commission now!

  74. Notafan

    I think we should do a deal with the UN, they can have Rudd and we can have our money back.

  75. Tel

    A government in the thrall of vested interests… like unions for example. Hmmm, we should have a Royal Commission into that.

  76. Dr.Sir Fred Lenin

    The krudsters officialese is a credit to Sir Humphrey Appleby,a worthy pupil,Hompy would have been so proud! A lot of it he would not understand,JOY! That is the purpose of Officialese,were the krudster in the UK civil service ,he would be a knighthood shoo in.

  77. Rabz

    Wonderful – today’s guest at the Commission is that foul moron, Dreg Zombet.

  78. .

    123456789
    # Jenny (867-5309) posted on May 16, 2014 at 3.22 am

    Scores of Australians killed in the collapse of the Gallipoli Front under a Labor Prime Minister! Royal Commission now!

  79. Splatacrobat

    Spud tries to derail another thread with an all roads lead to Nui Dat comment.
    Disgusting pillock

  80. Mike of Marion

    Vietnam will declare a national day when Numbers kicks on.

    Vietnam will ecstatic that they won’t be mentioned every day in a blog-site called Catallaxy by a bent and twisted blogger!!!!!!!!

  81. Zulu Kilo Two Alpha

    Anybody taking any bets that, if Shorten forces a double dissolution, and wins the subsequent election, his first act will be to shut down the Royal Commission into union corruption?

  82. john constantine

    prime minister shortens first action will be making sure that his own personal brand of justice is applied to the ‘senior labor figure’ and that the chick who came forward with the rape allegations gets his standard whistleblower outcome.

  83. Andrew

    It’s a pity we cannot apply the December 1989 Romanian style of justice in this instance.

    Speaking as a human being (and not as a cardboard box), I concur.

    LOL – quite so*.

    *NADT

  84. cynical1

    You can see why that gall bladder had it’s Kevin removed…

  85. Des Deskperson

    Here’s something else interesting about the allocation of praise and blame for public servants who may have been involved in the pink bats scheme.

    Here’s a list of the Department of the Environment employees who were awarded the Australia Day Achievement Medallion in 2010 (you have to scroll right down to the entries for early February)

    http://www.psnews.com.au/archives/ArchivesFebruary10.html

    The medallion is not regarded particularly highly by many staff because its prestige has been severely diluted by the need to ensure that an ‘appropriate’ number of women, Indigenous and ‘ethnic’ employees get them, but managers still seem to think it important, and Environment dished out a extraordinarily large number to its people at the very time when the pinks bats scheme was going pear shaped. I’m not sure how many recipients were directly involved in the debacle, but it makes an interesting contrast between the awards being showered than and the blame being ladled out now.

  86. Greg Combet says he was mindful of “the need to prevent fraud” when arranging the Renewable Energy Bonus—though his scheme was predicated on his irrational belief in the giant fraud of blaming supposedly catastrophic global warming on emissions of carbon dioxide.

  87. Toiling Mass

    Rudd’s accepting responsibility is as opportune and inauthentic as his apology for the stolen generations.

    Back then he was highlighting his virtue by apologising for something he had not done. There was a kind of ‘winking’ to the audience. They were all in the know – Rudd was innocent, but taking a hot for others.

    It is a bit like Jesus being crucified, when Christ did the divine Kevin-like thing of dying for other people’s sins.

    Now here he is accepting responsibility for the batt deaths – yet every other word he utters unflinchingly sheets blame to others, and protests his own innocence.

  88. Anne

    Still pretty funny Cynical1. ;-)

    Remember when it was guys like Combet who represented the extreme left wing of the party.

  89. Mike of Marion

    Toiling Mass
    #1307635, posted on May 16, 2014 at 10:15 am

    Can you imagine the uproar if the Royal Commissioner reported that he had little faith in Witness Rudd (unreliable witness) and his statement was full of contradictions of established fact.

  90. Jessie

    val at 4.46, johanna 5.54 et al,
    Bearing in mind that state and local government public servants are enamoured with the gravy pot of anthropogenic climate change and social justice at all costs, the possibility of redirecting/controlling funding or programs and implementing the same under this monopoly, as their leaders, is a highly coordinated effort. A consensus monopoly. Be interesting to see the ‘risk matrix’ used.
    CPA Australia Detecting and Protecting Against Fraud

  91. Toiling Mass

    Mike,

    I beleive the technical term for my reaction would be:

    ROFLMAO

  92. Kevin Fuller is really ripping into Kevin Rudd and a number of his apparatchiki right now.

  93. Gab

    Fuller is going well and I wish he would state that government has no business getting into home insulation business.

  94. rafiki

    This is about the trade union RC. Reading the first day transcript I was struck by these bits of the 12 May hearing (pages 79-80). This question seems to arise. Why would the Slater & Gordon people arranging a mortgage repayable by Blewitt without enquiring fully about his capacity to repay? Was it because they knew where the money was going to come from?
    45 Q. Did anyone from Slater & Gordon or anyone else ask you about whether your wife was working at the time?
    47 A. No.

    2 Q. Was your wife working at the time?
    3
    A. Yes. In a casual capacity as a part-time hairdresser.
    4 Her income was pocket money for her.
    5
    6 Q. Did anyone ask you about what your assets were at the time?
    8 A. No.
    9
    10 Q. Did anyone ask you how much you were required to pay to service the mortgage over your home in Duncraig?
    12 A. No

  95. Armadillo

    Why would the Slater & Gordon people arranging a mortgage repayable by Blewitt without enquiring fully about his capacity to repay?

    Because it doesn’t fall under the Consumer Credit Code. The loan was specified as being for ‘Business or Investment Purposes’. Business people are assumed to be smart enough not to require protection under the legislation. They are private funds from wealthy individuals who charge a premium over the banks. For instance, let’s say the banks are charging 8% interest on a loan and paying 4% interest on a deposit. The funder of a private mortgage might charge 12% (a much better return than putting their money in a term deposit at 4%). The advantage to the borrower is that there are ‘No questions asked eg. Ability to repay’ (as would be asked by a bank). The protection to the funds provider is that they ask for a big deposit (usually 40% as opposed to 5% with a bank). If the borrower misses a repayment, they sell them up quickly. The risk in minimised because of the large deposit. S&G would be getting the conveyancing work, part of the application fee plus a percentage of the interest charged (usually 0.5%) of the outstanding loan amount each month. Get enough funds under management, it’s quite lucrative.

  96. Armadillo

    I might add that JEG waived all those upfront fees, and the file was ‘scant’. It appears to me that she wasn’t interested in money to the firm (although they would have still got the monthly trailing commissions). She was doing a ‘favour’ for the bloke lying on top of her at night. IF what Ralph says is correct (he knew nothing about it), then it raises some serious questions about exactly what she knew. The fact that Ralph had a couple of loan repayments come from his own account puts that in doubt.

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