Public shaming can’t replace justice

Today in The Australian

As extremely serious accusations proliferate about behaviour by senior politicians that is claimed to have occurred years or even decades ago, the greatest damage is likely to be to the cause of justice itself.




About Henry Ergas

Henry Ergas AO is a columnist for The Australian. From 2009 to 2015 he was Senior Economic Adviser to Deloitte Australia and from 2009 to 2017 was Professor of Infrastructure Economics at the University of Wollongong’s SMART Infrastructure Facility. He joined SMART and Deloitte after working as a consultant economist at NECG, CRA International and Concept Economics. Prior to that, he was an economist at the OECD in Paris from the late 1970s until the early 1990s. At the OECD, he headed the Secretary-General’s Task Force on Structural Adjustment (1984-1987), which concentrated on improving the efficiency of government policies in a wide range of areas, and was subsequently Counsellor for Structural Policy in the Economics Department. He has taught at a range of universities, undertaken a number of government inquiries and served as a Lay Member of the New Zealand High Court. In 2016, he was made an Officer in the Order of Australia.
This entry was posted in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink.

39 Responses to Public shaming can’t replace justice

  1. mundi says:

    If it took place in victoria…

  2. Robbo says:

    Who gives a stuff about justice and the rule of law when there are votes to be won? Certainly not the Labor Party hypocrites and their craven allies.

  3. Iain Russell says:

    We need to resurrect historic institutions and means of justice to deal with histories allegations. Star Chamber, trial by combat, auto da fe, the Inquisition, dunking and ordeal by fire spring to mind.

  4. Cui Bono says:

    Excellent contribution by Ergas. This is a battle between civilization and barbarity, order and chaos.

  5. Snotball says:

    Watched Albo deliver his knockout punch interview on this yesterday. Someone should tell him the Akubra isnt working that well for him. The little wear marks and stains look as contrived as his pathetic delivery. Is it just me? Or does this bloke seem slightly retarded to anyone else? Could be the speech pattern or the slightly vacant expression or the slightly odd facial expressions but for some reason I feel he isn’t the full six pack!

  6. Texas Jack says:

    Is it time to make the case for tightening-up the existing statutes of limitations? Blasey-Ford law reforms?? At least make sure every budding teenager knows there are limits and that the Lady of Justice is blind-folded for a reason?

    Human brains obviously don’t all decay at the same rate, and are active when we sleep. While we’re gifted with the ability to recall vivid dreams, surely there are some people for whom these can fray and blur into actual life occurrences? With the passing of the years the risk of people mixing perception with reality must become real, and if they happen to have told they little stories to anyone who’ll listen….??

  7. Bruce says:

    “… the greatest damage is likely to be to the cause of justice itself.”

    That’s the plan, Stan.

    Is everyone familiar with the term; “Star Chamber”?

  8. Snoopy says:

    Someone should tell him the Akubra isnt working that well for him.

    He resembles a mushroom.

  9. Dave in Marybrook says:

    Anyone who crowed along with the Albo rub-n-tug rumours, or believed the Abbott punching a wall saga, or clutched their pearls at Latham breaking arms accusation- just check yourself. Any little public scuttlebutt cannot be justified merely by the accused being your ideological enemy, and cannot be accepted because the stakes may be small- these little scandals are given oxygen by clicks and Strewth! inches, and unless and until they are handled by the police and the courts, they are the same species as the Shorten [email protected] accusation and Porter’s woes.
    Gossip whets the knives of the assassins who stalk the courts of public opinion.
    Don’t be part of it.

  10. Rex Anger says:

    Gossip whets the knives of the assassins who stalk the courts of public opinion.
    Don’t be part of it.

    If that’s not a Liberty Quote right there, it sure could do with being popped up on billboards, splashed all over cheap and nasty cotton T-shirts and sold in preference to framed Live Love Laugh posters in all the homewares stores…

  11. W Hogg says:

    Time to go on the offensive.

    SloMo should declare it a fabrication based on the key “bathtub” and “Hard Rock Cafe” not existing. Then he would be free to unload on AnAl and the Wong Chap, and drag Ita into Senate oversight to explain why they run the hoax without checking basic, trivially disproven elements like the venue not even existing.

    How far do you think Kathy would have got with her allegation if Young Labor hadn’t existed until a year after the alleged rape? She would have been pilloried by the entire meeja and everyone would have called for A666ott to resign on suspicion that he orchestrated it.

  12. max says:

    Deuteronomy 19:15-21

    Witnesses

    15 One witness is not enough to convict anyone accused of any crime or offense they may have committed. A matter must be established by the testimony of two or three witnesses.

    16 If a malicious witness takes the stand to accuse someone of a crime, 17 the two people involved in the dispute must stand in the presence of the Lord before the priests and the judges who are in office at the time. 18 The judges must make a thorough investigation, and if the witness proves to be a liar, giving false testimony against a fellow Israelite, 19 then do to the false witness as that witness intended to do to the other party. You must purge the evil from among you. 20 The rest of the people will hear of this and be afraid, and never again will such an evil thing be done among you. 21 Show no pity: life for life, eye for eye, tooth for tooth, hand for hand, foot for foot.

  13. Andre Lewis says:

    Now another has-been-that-never-was, Spot Destroyer is buying into the Porter issue opining that a woman’s accusation of sexual assault is all that is needed to have non judicial ‘investigations’ even though police have already done this and found no case to answer. The harpies of the left (and few on the right) need to be put back in their box with defamation suits flying in their direction.

  14. Diogenes says:

    Spot Destroyer is buying into the Porter issue opining that a woman’s accusation of sexual assault is all that is needed to have non judicial ‘investigations’ even though police have already done this and found no case to answer.

    Find a few girls to accuse a few ladies of rape…

  15. Cassie of Sydney says:

    “Dave in Marybrook says:
    March 5, 2021 at 8:56 am
    Anyone who crowed along with the Albo rub-n-tug rumours, or believed the Abbott punching a wall saga, or clutched their pearls at Latham breaking arms accusation- just check yourself. Any little public scuttlebutt cannot be justified merely by the accused being your ideological enemy, and cannot be accepted because the stakes may be small- these little scandals are given oxygen by clicks and Strewth! inches, and unless and until they are handled by the police and the courts, they are the same species as the Shorten [email protected] accusation and Porter’s woes.
    Gossip whets the knives of the assassins who stalk the courts of public opinion.
    Don’t be part of it.”

    Excellent comment….though you left out Cardinal George Pell.

  16. Cassie of Sydney says:

    “Andre Lewis says:
    March 5, 2021 at 9:31 am
    Now another has-been-that-never-was, Spot Destroyer”

    This would be the same “Spot Destroyer” that the Abbott government appointed to a prominent post shortly after winning office in 2013?

  17. It is alleged that malcolm turnbulls grandfather behaved inproperlywith mizz milligans great grandmother in 1924 , charges may be laid in a Victorian court . We cannot have this errant sexual behaviour by priveleed white men of a certain age , no ferkin way .

  18. Jannie says:

    Isn’t it funny that this article appears in The Australian, which is one of the chief Witchburners.

  19. duncanm says:

    Dave in Marybrook says:
    March 5, 2021 at 8:56 am
    Anyone who crowed along with the Albo rub-n-tug rumours , or believed the Abbott punching a wall saga,

    nup. I disagree.

    Albo’s actions were never illegal, and no-one ever accused him of breaking a law (that I can remember).

    Ditto Abbott punching a wall.

    Both are discussions surrounding character and behaviour, which is certainly something I want to know when I have to choose who to vote for.

  20. duncanm says:

    Careful with the Hard Rock Cafe inconsistency.

    As Terry Pederson has pointed out, she probably has mistaken the Oz Rock Cafe, which was in Kings Cross at the time of the alleged incident.

  21. Cassie of Sydney says:

    “she probably has mistaken the Oz Rock Cafe, which was in Kings Cross at the time of the alleged incident.”

    I think she was mistaken about a whole lot of things…beginning and ending with the “sexual assault”.

  22. duncanm says:

    Cassie – that may well be, but the Hard Rock Cafe data point is not one to pin that argument on.

  23. Cassie of Sydney says:

    “duncanm says:
    March 5, 2021 at 10:23 am
    Cassie – that may well be, but the Hard Rock Cafe data point is not one to pin that argument on.”

    I’m not.

  24. V says:

    If the alleged victim has a case, they can presumably bring charges as a private prosecution? I don’t know if the ACT government gives the police/DPP a monopoly on initiating indictable criminal prosecutions.

    https://lylawyers.com.au/private-prosecutions-how-can-i-charge-someone-with-a-crime/#:~:text=According%20to%20the%20Criminal%20Procedure,body%20for%20any%20indictable%20offence.

    If the alleged victim feels they have enough evidence to secure a conviction, it should be allowed to presented in a court without interference from government.

  25. Roger says:

    Now, if there were a brave and non-conformist theatre director out there he or she might do well to consider a run of The Crucible, suitably updated for the times.

  26. Des Deskperson says:

    ‘SloMo should declare it a fabrication based on the key “bathtub”’

    Interestingly, there’s firm in Sydney called Porter that supplies and installs bathtubs:

    https://www.porterbathroom.com/product-category/bath/

    Of course, I have no evidence that this has added to any confusion.

  27. Tintarella di Luna says:

    It’s over! Except the slavering ‘ogresses and and fake Boudicas’ (thanks currencylad) are not sated of feeding on the carcass of ChristianPorter’s reputation and character and now we have the useless ‘Just-a-Spoiler’ swamp creature come to supas well but is there enough left for her appetite?

  28. sabena says:

    duncanm and cassie
    I think your missing the point on Hard Rock Cafe v Ozrock Cafe.
    Porter and the Claimant were both teenagers under 18.They would have been supervised.It would be unlikely that they would go to such establishments on their own.

  29. Snoopy says:

    Prof Ben Saul
    @profbensaul
    ·
    16h
    3) The govt is not legally required to establish an ad hoc inquiry into the matter. It is a political question of what our democracy expects of the character and fitness of any politician, particularly a cabinet minister and first law officer

    Prof Ben Saul
    @profbensaul
    ·
    16h
    4) and whether we trust the Prime Minister alone to judge it when he has a clear partisan political conflict of interest, the matter is so serious, and larger issues of violence against women are of such public concern

    That’s what elections are for, Perfesser Fuckstick.

  30. Leo G says:

    As Terry Pederson has pointed out, she probably has mistaken the Oz Rock Cafe, which was in Kings Cross at the time of the alleged incident.

    The Oz Rock Cafe trademark (trademark number 558476) was registered on 27 June 1991. There is no corresponding record of an Oz Rock Cafe ABN, suggesting that it operated under a different business name.

  31. Cassie of Sydney says:

    “sabena says:
    March 5, 2021 at 11:12 am
    duncanm and cassie
    I think your missing the point on Hard Rock Cafe v Ozrock Cafe.
    Porter and the Claimant were both teenagers under 18.They would have been supervised.It would be unlikely that they would go to such establishments on their own.”

    Agree sabena.

  32. TBH says:

    Gossip whets the knives of the assassins who stalk the courts of public opinion.
    Don’t be part of it.

    Singularly the best sentence I’ve seen written on the subject.

  33. min says:

    Dave from 8.30 on writes about gossip . It maybe gossip when one witness claims to have seen the behaviour ,however in Albo’s situation photos with times and dates were the evidence . When questioned in parliament he claimed that he went in because of a bad back . Really getting a massage by girls in such places whose training maybe minimal on a back problem especially when a physiotherapist who with private health you can claim , has a premise next door to your office. ?

  34. Buccaneer says:

    Trying to equate the Abbott wall incident and the Porter wape incident to the Albo RnT incident is a bit of a stretch. Please show me the media blow up about Albo visiting an illegal brothel, this is the only place I know where it’s documented rightly or wrongly. https://www.michaelsmithnews.com/2013/07/the-deputy-prime-minister-photographed-one-hour-visit-to-a-thai-massage-provider-operating-an-unlice.html?cid=6a0177444b0c2e970d0192abd34b51970d#comment-6a0177444b0c2e970d0192abd34b51970d The only correlation is that if the photos exist then both the other incidents had a stronger case to be treated like Albo…

  35. Rorschach says:

    DuncanM:

    Albo’s actions were never illegal, and no-one ever accused him of breaking a law (that I can remember).

    Ditto Abbott punching a wall.

    Both are discussions surrounding character and behaviour, which is certainly something I want to know when I have to choose who to vote for.

    For the record:

    The Abbott wall punch incident is VERY unlikely to have happened in the circumstance described,

    https://thesydneyinstitute.com.au/blog/issue-154/
    https://thesydneyinstitute.com.au/blog/issue-155/

    but there are photos/video of Albo – and the visit was not denied.

  36. Really, who gives a shit about the entire affair?

  37. JohnJJJ says:

    I don’t know how Henry E. does it, but he nails it again. It is the reversion to tribalism. I have seen it in a variety of countries and it is quick and very hard to overcome. To refer to the Greeks and barbarism is spot on. The recent story on MinterEllison is a typical example. The only ways out are: kingdom, fascism/socialism ( both are a versions of one tribe ruling), religion (Islam is a good example) or the Magna Carta.
    Don’t know why the comments are off in the Australian. It would be a good discussion.

  38. JohnJJJ says:

    I don’t know how Henry E. does it, but he nails it again. It is the reversion to tribalism. I have seen it in a variety of countries and it is quick and very hard to overcome. To refer to the Greeks and barbarism is spot on. The recent story on MinterEllison is a typical example. The only ways out are: kingdom, fazism/socialism ( both are a versions of one tribe ruling), religion (Izl am is a good example) or the Magna Carta.
    Don’t know why the comments are off in the Australian. It would be a good discussion.

  39. JohnJJJ says:

    I s l a m
    Just testing the moderation algorithm. Did they account for spaces? Did they pay enough to test blank spaces? How much is a blank space worth? Well I’ll find out. I love IT, it is so convenient and fast, yeah, nah, yeah

Comments are closed.