It is much clearer now with the 9 month break behind me – that fog of despair confronting me at the time was but a symptom of how inadequate my efforts were in trying to help do something about the corruption within Gillard’s Leadership and the larger Global Leadership.
Hillbilly’s comment has restored some perspective and shown how the collaborative efforts of so many is now beginning to flower …
Hi TE-BO: Long time no see! Hope this isn’t too long for you. On accountability, you’re spot on and Vive la difference!
As you know, I have no agenda except to get to the truth to try and help rid Australia of the endemic toxic corruption which has blighted our great nation for too long. I don’t care which partys’ members are caught and punished if they’re found to be involved in corrupt behaviour. A return to honesty and integrity in many professions, including journalism, is long overdue!
Waleed Aly’s ill-informed and obviously unresearched article seeks to perpetuate a diversionary myth Julia Gillard, John McTernan and many others have tried to create,- that it is all “muckraking” by the Liberal Party.
His claim equates with many such examples from several taxpayer-funded ABC employees, particularly Jon Faine who the ABC holds out as a legal expert. He described the matter that has sparked so much investigation by police and other authorities, including the current Victorian Fraud Squad and the Royal Commission, as an “internal spat in a law firm” and “it’s a stack of cards that’s built on the thinnest of foundations and I can’t see the substance in it” – “I’ve been consistently saying that from the beginning”.
The reality is far different as I’ll detail later in this post, I have edited one of Waleed Aly’s main claims to better reflect the true position.
‘At every opportunity, the ABC has sought to make the connection between the Liberal Party and driving the push for exposure of the scandal surrounding the AWU and the Australian Workers Union Workplace Reform Association Inc Fraud, and Julia Gillard’s time as a Labor lawyer .
Hence its bizarre pursuit of an effort to portray that scandal as a complete non-scandal, despite the vast amount of documented and sworn evidence to the contrary. The point is clear: that the ABC tried to cover its failure over many years to report on Labor’s rot, by excessively biased and over-the-top coverage of matters such as ‘Tony Abbott allegedly punched a wall 30+years ago, and more recent allegations of emerging Liberal rot!’
1995. The original allegations about the scandal were all raised by Union/Labor officials: Robert F Smith and Ian Cambridge in particular. This ultimately resulted in Gillard’s forced resignation and exit from S & G and the legal profession on 11/9/95. Her employers had found after their incomplete investigation of the documents and circumstances, that “the nature of the wrongdoings alleged required us to believe that she had knowingly participated in a fraud and deceived her partners about it for a year or more.”
In 1995, Mr.Phil Gude was Minister for Industry and Employment in the Victorian Liberal Kennett Government and as such, was the appropriate person for two Labor/Union whistleblowers, an AWU Official accompanied by a Labor MP, to approach with allegations of improper use of Union monies. Mr.Gude was given certain information which, as recorded in Victorian Hansard, he brought up in Question Time on October 12 1995.
In 2006, Julia Gillard acknowledged in her ABC ‘Australian Story’ that it was her Labor and Union factional enemies who had approached and given the material to Mr. Gude.
In 2001, Mr. Geoff Leigh was contacted by 20yr Union/Labor member, Bob Kernohan and given sworn affidavit/Stat.Decs and many other supporting documents he’d been served with and saved from a related Court case. The AWU had tried to collect and destroy all such documents from others who held them. As recorded in Hansard, Mr. Leigh raised the matter in the Victorian Parliament on 28/2/2001.
In 2006, the matter was raised by Julia Gillard in an interview for the ABC program, “Australian Story”. Again she offered no credible explanation but in acknowledging it was her own side of politics that raised matters with Phil Gude, she said it was: “another thing that happened in what had been an ongoing set of very unpleasant battles and experiences within Labor about getting preselected, so in some senses I guess I wasn’t surprised, it make you angry and all of that but it certainly doesn’t shock you when you have been around Labor politics for a while”.
In 2007 Glenn Milne wrote an article and he too, sourced a lot of information from Labor/Union stalwart Bob Kernohan’s sworn Statutory Declaration and other documents including the 19/11/96 affidavit of Ian Cambridge. That detailed all the AWU Rules breached in the creation of the AWUWRA. Inc.
In spite of the obvious conflict of interest, Gillard admits she advised and assisted her lover Wilson to set up, register and incorporate the bogus entity, enabling him to open and operate the unauthorised bank accounts through which cheques made out either to the AWU or the entity ‘passed off’ as the AWU by the unlawful use of its name. Wilson then allegedly misappropriated, laundered and converted the monies to his own personal use.
Milne checked with Julia Gillard before he published. She claimed for the first time, that she had been “young and naive”. but didn’t say why. *****.
*****(In his statement prepared 17 years after the 11/9/95 exit interview, Peter Gordon falsely claimed : “There was no evidence which explicitly or even indirectly controverted the explanation Ms Gillard made at the time and has made publicly since as to her dealings with Mr Wilson; namely that she had been‘naïve’ and had been ‘taken in by a conman.”
Contrary to Peter Gordon’s claim, and the fact that current chief of Slater & Gordon, Andrew Grech, also supported it, there is no evidence whatsoever in the redacted transcript of the Gillard exit interview he and the late Geoff Shaw conducted, that Gillard advanced that, or any other “explanation”. She has never publicly claimed Wilson was a conman or involved in any criminality).
In 2011 Glenn Milne again raised the AWU Fraud matter that was based on Bob Kernohan’s Stat Dec and related documents. Ms.Gillard arguably abused the office of Prime Minister in trying to further stifle and if possible, end, investigations into her actions when a lawyer, by an intervention at managerial level with the newspaper organisation concerned, Her intervention led to Glen Milne losing his job and also regular guest spots on the ABC “Insiders” program.
Also in 2011, Bob Kernohan contacted Michael Smith of 2UE and provided him with all the information that, despite an offer of a safe seat in Parliament in the ’90’s if he was silent, followed on his refusal by constant threats, intimidation, a bashing and with-holding of his financial entitlements for several years after he was forced to leave the Union, he had tried to have raised in the interest and service of his former Union members on so many occasions.
Again, because of Ms.Gillard’s arguable abuse of the office of Prime Minister, by intervening at managerial level with the 2UE hierarchy, Michael Smith was not allowed to go to air with his pre-publicised proposed interview with Kernohan. He refused to compromise his principles as required by an ultimatum from management, and as a result left his job.
In 2011. WA Labor/Union official Kevin Reynolds raised the Gillard/Wilson relationship at a union meeting. Accusing Ms.Gillard of hypocrisy, Mr Reynolds told members it was just one of many secrets he would reveal about Labor’s inner circle.
In 2012, Labor MP Robert McLelland, who had been Attorney-General under Gillard until she demoted him because of his support for Kevin Rudd, raised the matter in Federal Parliament. As award-winning investigative reporter at the “Australian”. Hedley Thomas explained when asked a series of questions by the ABC’s Media Watch, “the reporting was motivated by a conclusion I reached in late June 2012 after Mr. McLelland’s speech, and one piece of information from a source, that a vexed issue in which the Prime Minister played a central and important role, had not, in fact, ever been forensically examined.”.
In 2012, former Labor/Union official Ralph Blewitt expressed his intention to return to Australia and confess to his part in the AWU Fraud with Gillard’s lover Bruce Wilson. As a result, Labor lawyer Nick Styant-Browne, one of the former Slater & Gordon equity partnership employers of Ms.Gillard, made public statements and soon after released material including a draft statement of his former colleague, Peter Gordon.
He then released a transcript of a recorded 11/9/95 exit interview with Gillard, a document he had agreed with Peter Gordon in 1995 should be held ‘for our individual benefit in the event that it was needed to protect their position in any subsequent external investigation of the AWU matters.”
They had kept it secret for 17 years but Styant-Browne said: “when Blewitt emerged I formed the view, and Peter agreed with me, that the story had some traction and that it could rebound to us in a very unhappy way”..
Leaving aside the Royal Commission, the current state of play in Waleed Aly’s non-scandal being investigated by the Victorian Fraud Squad, is described in the recent ruling by Magistrate Lauritsen and covered very well in today’s ‘Australian” by Hedley Thomas, but these are some main points..
‘The evidence identified in this investigation points strongly towards establishing that the creation of the Australian Workers Union – Workplace Reform Association Inc. was for the sole purpose of legitimising the ‘false’ invoicing for ‘work’ provided by the association.’..
(Det.Sgt. Ross Mitchell says) ‘he is investigating the commission of four types of offence in relation to Wilson and others – obtaining property by deception; receiving secret commissions; making and using false documents; and conspiracy to cheat and defraud. He now believes Wilson, Blewitt and others were involved in committing these offences.’
‘For those documents answering the description in s.118, I am satisfied that, in each instance, the communication was made or the document prepared in furtherance of the commission of a fraud or an offence.
I will make the order sought by Mitchell.’
CONCLUSION: Almost without exception, every time the Gillard/Wilson//Blewitt/AWU Fraud Scandal has been raised or surfaced, the primary reference has been from a Labor or Union source, contrary to the claim made by Waleed Aly, several ABC and various other apologists for Gillard and Labor in the MSM and other fields.
Some of the information in this post has come from a strident critic of Rupert Murdoch, News Limited and other Murdoch institutions. Stephen Mayne was the founder of largely left-wing supportive site Crikey.com. I suspect he would be deeply offended if someone tried to call him a conservative, or worse, a right-wing misogynist nutjob on the internet.
However, to his credit, he has provided some fair and reasonably unbiased coverage which the ABC, as it is currently run, could only dream about achieving, but it’s one taxpayers wish they would make at least some effort to try to do so!
This Fairfax Waleed Aly article which mentions his position with the ABC “Drive” program, presumably to try and give him some credibility, reveals it’s a forlorn wish.
The ABC’s constant and continuing sustained effort over many years to mislead, misrepresent, frustrate and sidetrack proper investigation of the AWUWRA Inc Fraud Scandal appears to be deserving of a separate judicial inquiry into its part in a coverup Ian Cambridge has recorded appeared to be in place and under way in the Union, Labor law firm and political arenas in 1995/96.
Ian Cambridge Address to QLD AWU Delegates:
Finally, the fact that Waleed Aly and Jon Faine are both lawyers and yet could still make make such ridiculous statements unsupported by one shred of credible evidence, indicates just how low standards in the legal profession and the ABC have sunk over the last few years!. Where are the Law Institute of Victoria guardians and those of other regulatory bodies that they stand by and allow these grubs to bring even worse odium on lawyers and the profession in general?
The pursuit of Gillard and all those with involvement in the AWU scandal has taken its toll on all pursuers … is not and never will be a media victory. If not for the support and sponsors of those against all political corruption and in this case against the depth and breadth of the AWU/Gillard case – including the mass of bloggers, the commentators, the researchers, and all following in the footsteps of the tenacious AWU identity Bob Kernohan, with late-starter support from Ralph Blewitt, the story would have died a long time ago. Add to the same mix the people from the journalist profession who were shunned by their own kind for taking a stand that stood against the mainstream media wanting to shut down this story.
Those who would not be silenced despite Gillard and her cohorts attempts to the contrary, are the one’s now looking down the barrel at those involved and targeted by the Royal Commission and Police investigations. It now only needs for good people to do their job for Gillard and all those involved in the AWU scandal to face judgement and be delivered into another world of hurt and suffering for what they have done.
This battle is far from over and as we know – there are many with a vested interest in protecting their own involvement – i.e. Roxon, Shorten, McClelland, Richardson, Carr, Arbib, and so many more bit players – including the Media Proprietors and Editors – [i.e. primarily The ABC and Fairfax Media] – who allowed themselves to be hushed by Gillard. These are the cowards and no longer should be allowed to call themselves a member of any media membership with all its privileged entitlements and access.
In Australian Media History – never has there been such a collective group of media/journalists who have been so bad at doing their job.