Sunday, March 04, 2007

Rudd, Campbell & Brian Burke

What a week! Revelations that Opposition Leader, Kevin Rudd had thrice met with disgraced former Labor WA Premier Burke, occupied much news, Parliamentary and political "10-second" media bite.

Mr Rudd met Mr Burke and others three times in 2005. At the time he was Shadow Foreign Affairs Minister, and "future Labor leader". Despite his protestations to the contrary, many political observers see the meetings , including dinner, as political flesh-pressing, designed to enhance Mr Rudd's future leadership plans.

Mr Howard's current Minister for Human Services, Ian Campbell is a WA Senator. Since Treasurer Costello said in Parliament that "Anyone who deals with Mr Brian Burke is morally and politically compromised." Mr Campbell was then Minister for the Environment, and met Mr Burke about a proposed Aboriginal Cultural Centre, to be built as part of a racecourse redevelopment.

It seems to me that, in both cases, politicians and their minders ought to have have avoided any meeting with Brian Burke, or his "management", just because he had been convicted of corruption. That was an "error of judgement" from both of them.

Having made their respective political points, if either side had any evidence of corrupt behaviour, they would have referred it to the Federal and WA police. Wouldn't they?? Well, no, because in the end, politicians look after themselves. Any bagging they do is "part of the game".

Perhaps it is time for a Federal body to oversee and investigate possible cases of corrupt or illegal behaviour by politicians.

In the meantime, I'd be happy if they returned to the job of governing Australia. We need details of plans for a national school curriculum, the Health system needs overhauling, we need a fairer IR system than WorkChoices (and workers employed by Tristar to do nothing productive, need a just outcome), plans for the new Murray Darling Catchment Authority need to be detailed, the budget prepared, and there are nearly 500 Bills before Parliament that have not yet been finalized! (See Below)

41st PARLIAMENT – 1ST SESSION – 2004-05-06-07
(but not yet passed)
Bills introduced in 2004 — 93 (Including 11 received from the Senate)
Bills introduced in 2005 — 182 (Including 24 received from the Senate)
Bills introduced in 2006 — 188 (Including 32 received from the Senate)
Bills introduced in 2007 — 34 (Including 3 received from the Senate)

And there's a Federal election due before November! Get on with the real job of governing.

The Analyst