tony abbott; Where There Is Smoke

Proverbially, There Is Fire!

A naughty biography of Tony Abbott’s Life

or is it

A biography of Tony Abbott’s Naughty Life?

Tony Abbott has never come under close, critical scrutiny. Murdoch puff pieces are not a suitable basis for knowing the truth about a person.

There have been many reports of his actions and alleged actions over the past four decades. Each one, individually, has received a contemptuous flick from the now Prime Minister and his supporter. Perhaps it is time to look at them in totality. After all, Tony Abbott says it is “perfectly reasonable” for the media to probe a politician’s past to assess their fitness for office. [1] We all know how to treat Tony Abbott’s public comments on any subject because he told us.

Remember this when you hear his statements on these matters.

What follows is not encyclopaedic
and so
I shall make additions as I find (or am told about) them

(Last update 19th Aug 2015)

1957, 4 November

Anthony John Abbott born to Richard Henry Abbott and Faye Abbott (nee Peters) in (maybe) Lambeth, London, Middlesex, England. I have been unable to confirm the statement his mother apparently made about young Tony and food, “I could not fill my son up.”

There have been many rumours about Tony Abbott’s family history and his father. Here is a page dedicated to Richard Abbott and his forebears.

1966

Frances Abbott recounts a story her father used to tell.. “When he was at Riverview; he was hiding in the garden after school (when he was nine) because he felt like he didn’t have any friends and his dad came out and said to him ‘To have friends you need to be a friend.'” [2]

1975

TONY ABBOTT’S EARLY VOTING

abbott1In typical Murdoch Mania not a single mention has been made of the fact that Tony Abbott’s mentor in his youth was one BA Santamaria, ex-ALP and founder of the DLP. [3] The Catholic Church was pressing the claims of the DLP to be a major player in the Australian political landscape. Are we to believe that at that same 1975 election, young Anthony John Abbott voted for Malcolm Fraser’s Liberal Party at a time the DLP was holding the balance of power? At a time Tony Abbott was very close to the Catholic Church. I don’t know and I don’t think we will ever find out because he will not be asked by the Murdoch owned gutter journalists we have creating Australia’s opinions.

1976

Destroying a Glass Door at University.

Published university reports show that after a narrow defeat in the university senate elections in 1976 – Mr Abbott’s first year of an economics-law degree – he kicked in a glass panel door.In the ensuing two years, he was repeatedly accused in the university paper of being a right-wing thug and bully who used sexist and racist tactics to intimidate his opponents. Lawyer David Patch, who is a Labor candidate in the federal seat of Wentworth, recalls an AUS conference in the mid-1970s, which had initiated a special “women’s room” for females to discuss political issues. “Tony used to stand outside the women’s room with his right-wing mates and loudly tell sexist and homophobic jokes,” he said. [4] There are a number of other “accusations” against Tony Abbott from this time. From encouraging indecent behaviour towards women, running a mob of heavies to calling on the KKK to destroy the Left Wing of University politics. They are all a part of a pattern and I won’t go into them here.

1977

Charge of sexual Assault

Helen Elizabeth Wilson, whose age was given as 29, a former student teacher, claimed she was assaulted in October 1977 when she was addressing students at Ku-ring-gai College of Advanced Education in a debate about whether the college should withdraw from the Australian Union of Students (AUS). She told the North Sydney court that someone had called out: “Why don’t you smile, honey?” Then a youth had touched her on the upper part of her leg. Mr Abbott, then 20, pleaded not guilty. [4] The Daily Telegraph report said: “Miss Wilson said as she approached the microphone . . . two youths moved up behind her. “She said: ‘I had just commenced speaking when I felt a hand between my legs on my lower buttocks. I was wearing jeans. I jumped back, turned around, and saw Tony Abbott laughing about two feet away. The people in the audience began laughing and jeering’, Miss Wilson said.” When it came to court the following January, Mr Abbott was flanked by his parents, a legal team including a QC, and seven witnesses. Advocates for Ms Wilson are to this day flabbergasted at the firepower Mr Abbott wheeled in, which left their under-represented side wilting.[4]

Punching a Wall

In the latest Quarterly Essay, journalist David Marr quotes former Sydney University student Barbara Ramjan as saying an angry Mr Abbott threw two punches at a wall near her after she beat him for the student representative council (SRC) presidency ” [4] When he was interviewed for the article, Mr Abbott said he had no recollection of the incident. “It would be profoundly out of character had it occurred,” he is quoted in the essay as saying. ” David Patch, is a barrister and former judicial registrar of the Industrial Relations Court. In 1977 he was Ramjan’s campaign manager. Patch claimed that although he did not witness the incident reported by Marr, he did speak with Ramjan moments after it took place. ”She is a small woman … She was very shaken, scared and angry. She told me Abbott had come up to her, put his face in her face, and punched the wall on either side of her head.’ [5]
Simple common sense suggests that Patch was telling the truth. It is unlikely that a barrister would have lied about such a matter. But if he had, why would he have weakened his testimony by revealing that he had not actually been an eyewitness to the incident? [5]
Next day another witness emerged. This man told The SMH that he saw ”Abbott’s famous flying squad of goons” arrive at the SRC office. They ”threw me against the wall, kicked in the doors of the SRC, and started creating havoc”. The witness followed the squad into the SRC office. ”I saw Abbott throw a punch at Barbara Ramjan but didn’t see it land … When I next saw her, she was in an extremely shocked condition …” The witness wanted to remain anonymous. He said he was, however, willing to sign a statutory declaration. [5]

2014 update on this event.
Richard Ackland wrote in the theguardian.com, Thursday 10 July 2014 “Every time someone pops up and accuses Barbara Ramjan of lying over the infamous university incident when Tony Abbott flew his fists into a wall, there has been a handsome apology to her. If only you’d been listening on Monday night you’d have heard the latest in a series of grovels, this one from Andrew Bolt on 2GB’s Steve Price show.” [6]
On 19 May, I made some statements on air concerning an incident involving the prime minister which took place at the University of Sydney approximately 30 years ago. I have been told by Barbara Ramjan that my statements might have been understood to suggest that her evidence of the incident was not truthful. I have never accused Ms Ramjan of lying in giving her evidence of that incident. In referring to the incident I did not intend to suggest that she was a liar or that she had acted dishonestly and if anyone understood my statements to suggest that, then I apologise to her unreservedly.[6]
OK, so we have already seen his character.

1976

When Abbott was 19, his girlfriend became pregnant and claimed he was the biological father. The couple did not marry and put the child up for adoption. For 27 years, Abbott believed that he fathered this child. In 2004, the boy sought out his biological mother and it was publicly revealed he was an ABC sound recordist who worked in Parliament House, Canberra, and was involved in making television programs in which Abbott appeared. The story was reported around the world, but DNA testing later revealed that Abbott was not the man’s father. (Wikipedia)

Late 1977

Lindsay Foyle recounts an evening meeting with Tony Abbott and his klingons at a pub; . . . . The interlopers were soon identified as radicals involved in student politics at the University of Sydney. We were about to chip our colleague about bringing contacts into such a low-class establishment when he brought them over and introduced them to us.It did not end well. They quickly explained how the world went around and why they had to extinguish their opposition at the university and the rest of the country. Unfortunately, I did not agree with everything that was said and a few feathers got ruffled. The main point of contention was a woman’s right to control pregnancy, either via contraception or abortion. My view was that it was something those involved should settle on, not people like me who didn’t have to live with the consequences of the decision. To the activists that view was just as unacceptable as abortion.The largest of the lot was a person named Tony Abbott. He decided the quickest way to settle our differences was to take me downstairs and demonstrate how I was wrong by punching my head in. This was not the way I wanted the evening to go. Yes, we could have gone downstairs. Yes, he probably could have punched my head in — provided I did not faint of fright first — and yes, the evening’s discussion would have been brought to an end.[7]

Convicted

While celebrating passing his final economics exam, Tony Abbott was also charged with bending a street sign, which was witnessed by two policemen. Tony Abbott was found guilty of this offence, although no conviction was recorded. [4]

1978

Punching Peter Woof
Monday, 8 January 2007 sydney alternative media posted; “The editor had an interesting interview recently with long time qualified high school teacher here in NSW, and Canada, Peter Woof, a long time supporter of environmental causes.” The post continued, ” In 1978 25 year old Woof stood up to student politician, now federal government health minister, Tony Abbott who he says was allegedly caught doing unethical or perhaps illegal things like changing the locks on the student union offices and other things.

Click image to embiggen

Woof says Abbott, a well known boxing enthusiast now if not then, punched Woof in the face. Woof was a 24 year old technician employed at Sydney University. The date can be corroborrated by reference to civil assault suit documentation against Abbott presumably created for Woof in the Glebe local court at the time. Woof represented himself but was totally out muscled financially, he says, by ‘half a dozen’ barristers and lawyers who turned up at the preliminary hearing turning the civil suit into a high risk of huge legal costs against the alleged assault victim Woof. Woof assumes these expensive lawyers taking a student activist dispute to another level were paid for by Abbott’s ‘rich father’. (It also suggests a serious fear of a blossoming conservative political career almost destroyed at birth.) [8]

Editor’s comment; This is the second time (check the Wilson incident) that we read of Tony Abbott fronting Court with a swarm of Legal people. It seems Abbott always works best in a pack. Is that what he has turned the Federal Opposition Front Bench into? A pack of slavering wolves following an alpha male? It was Tony Abbott who was called John Howard’s Attack Dog and now “Poodle” Pyne is known as Abbott’s Attack Dog.

1979

APARTHEID

When Abbott was President of the Students’ Representative Council at Sydney University, he wrote in Honi Soit that Voluntary Student Unionism “would finally stop all students being taxed so the SRC can fund groups such as International Socialists, South African Terrorists, the Spartacists, Lidcombe Health Workers Collective etc. which are quite irrelevant, not to say obnoxious, to student purposes.”
Abbott’s “South African Terrorists” were the members of Mandela’s African National Congress (ANC) political party, to whom the SRC had previously been giving money. Yet, upon the death of Nelson Mandela in December 2013, Prime Minister Tony Abbott had this to say of his legacy: “The world mourns the passing of Nelson Mandela. Nelson Mandela will forever be remembered as more than a political leader, he was a moral leader. He spent much of his life standing against the injustice of apartheid.” [9]

1980

RHODES SCHOLARSHIP

Abbott was awarded a Rhodes Scholarship in 1980. There has always been a little disbelief that he gained this most prestigious award when he was a mid-range student and a mid-range sportsman.

abbottrhodes1The ABC has thrown a little light onto this conundrum discovering some of the selection committee. [13]

Although there were seven members including three previous scholars, on three people are named on the list.

Sir Roden Cutler, the Governor of NSW and the businessman Richard John Lee (Rhodes Scholar 1971) were joined by the now Chief Justice J. Dyson Heydon (Rhodes Scholar 1974)

The Canberra Times added to the published information. “According to the list, the 1980 panel included Michael Birt, a former vice-chancellor of the University of NSW, war veteran Harold “Jack” Dickinson, who was appointed chair of the NSW Public Service Board in 1971. Academic Alice Erh-Soon Tay was also a member.” [41]

abbottrhodes2The three applicants whose names have been redacted were all honours students. It would be interesting to know just how the mediocre Abbott was able to get the nod from the committee.

Abbott wrote in Battlelines, “As much, I’m sure, through my role in student politics as through academic or sporting prowess, I was chosen as a NSW Rhodes Scholar at the end of 1980.” [42]

Justice Heydon would appear to have been suitably rewarded with his appointment to the Union-Bashing Royal Commission.

In his 2012 essay Political Animal, journalist David Marr, recounts how Mr Abbott “impressed a panel of worthies chaired by the governor of NSW, Sir Roden Cutler”. “For Anglophiles and rugby players, the Rho­des was died-and-gone-to-heaven time. Winners must be scholars fond of sport who display “moral force of character and instincts to lead”. The award to Abbott came as a surprise, particularly to those who had seen him up close on the SRC. One jibe at the time was, ‘second-grade footballer, third-rate academic and fourth-class politician.’,

1981

INDIA

This was the year abbott spent three months backpacking through India. John Menadue wrote, “He spent six weeks at the Australian Jesuit mission in Bihar state. He was fascinated by the country’s many contrasts, from its bullock carts to its nuclear power stations.” [10] Samantha Maiden reported in the Daily Telegraph of 1st Feb, 2015 that “TONY Abbott likes to tell the story that he accidentally downed a marijuana-laced lassi in India as a young man and spent 12 hours “off with the fairies’’.” [11]

SOUTH AFRICA

In 1981, the Fraser government refused permission for the aircraft carrying the Springboks to a tour of New Zealand to refuel on Australian territory. Abbott, however, accepted a rugby scholarship to tour South Africa in what former Federal Labor Minister Barry Cohen described as a “universally acknowledged… promotional tour of Apartheid”. [9]

CITIZENSHIP

Anthony John Abbott was born to an English father and a first-generation Australian mother at a general lying-in hospital in York Road, Lambeth, London, on 4 November 1957, his parents did not register him as an Australian infant born overseas or immediately apply for Australian citizenship on his behalf.

Click to embiggen

Click to embiggen

It was not until over twenty years after the family had arrived in Australia as subsidised assisted migrants that Tony Abbott’s parents applied to register his birth with the Dept. of Immigration and Ethnic Affairs and apply for his citizenship, in a document/s dated 19 June 1981. This application appears to have been treated as urgent by departmental staff. His parents were subsequently informed in a letter dated 1 July 1981 that Anthony John Abbott was now deemed to be an Australian citizen under Section 11 of the Australian Citizenship Act 1948 which allowed citizenship by descent. At this time Tony Abbott was 23 years and 7 months of age and, had either applied for a Rhodes Scholarship or was intending to apply for this scholarship to study at Oxford University in the United Kingdom. [12]

Read the Full article here – North Coast Voices

There is something unexplained here – WHY was the application treated urgently? How come the son of a dentist began receiving preferential treatment at the age of 23? And why has the record now been put “off the record”?

A POSSIBLE ANSWER

Found on Facebook, a pictorial question about the timelines of the two previous sections of this tale. [43]

plot1

OXFORD UNIVERSITYabbottdegree

abbott began his course at Oxford in October 1981 and took his final examinations in June 1983.

A degree in Philosophy, Politics and Economics (PPE) was conferred on him on November 21st, 1989.

The image was found on Junkee.com [44]

 

1987

Abbott wrote an article in the Bulletin (August 18. 1987) on his time as a Seminarian. The article was republished on Margo Kingston’s “No Fibs” blog.abbottseminary In an anecdote which should send shivers down the spine of any believer in a Free National Health Systen (such as Medicare) Abbott wrote, “I had been appointed college infirmarian. This post was a legacy from quasi-monastic days and involved supervising the medicine cabinet and ensuring that the ill were not forgotten in their rooms.But during winter, when up to 30 percent of the college would be down with “flu” at any one time, the infirmarian spent much of his day ferrying food and aspirin to the rooms of the sick. My view was that I knew nothing about medicine and that those too sick to eat in the dining room ought to be in hospital.Anyway, I thought, most were malingering. So I encouraged “self-service” of medicines and suggested that meals would be better fetched by the friends of the sick. Many deeply resented this disdain for college’s caring and communitarian ethos. And, I confess, I did not have the courage to refuse room service to members of the seminary staff.” On his final decision to leave, he wrote, revealingly, “I think I had subconsciously stipulated that the Church needed to forget the usual considerations of prudent caution and simply agree, just once, to what I wanted.” [14]

It would seem that since the Church would not do as he wanted, he was no longer interested in being a part of the Church. Not quite the team player we have been presented with as he took his bat and ball, or rather his dog collar and bible, and went home!

Late 1980’s

Knocking Joe Hockey Out

JOE Hockey still regales colleagues with stories about the day Tony Abbott knocked him out cold with one punch. Australia’s alternative treasurer was left with two black eyes. The big man of Liberal politics later blamed a “personality clash” for the fabled rugby punch-up. It was the late 1980s and Hockey was at boiling point about not getting picked for Abbott’s team. Abbott was nearly 10 years older and the coach of the Sydney University 2nd XV. Hockey was playing in third grade and regularly getting picked to play first grade. But Abbott wouldn’t give him a berth. So when Hockey saw the opportunity, he went straight for Abbott’s kidneys. Journalist and author Peter Fitzsimons saw the clash and says it was “a blistering array of uppercuts, hay-makers and wild swings. But Hockey only remembers one punch. Abbott knocked Hockey out.[15]

1988 – 1994

The BULLETIN

In 1987 as he left the seminary, Abbott had been employed by The Bulletin. This was his first step into journalism.

Margaret “Margie” Aitken,

Margie was born in 1958 in Lower Hutt, New Zealand. Both her parents were members of the New Zealand Labour Party and Margie was also a member for a while. Her family has always been very sport-oriented; Max Aitken, her father, is a senior soccer administrator, and Margie played soccer and netball for a number of years. She is a Catholic, like her husband. She has a brother, Greg, who is a private investigator. Margie Aitken attended Fernlea School and Wainuiomata College, where among other studies she took part in a pioneering Maori-language course. At the age of 16, she entered teachers college in Wellington, and after graduation taught primary school in Upper Hutt and Wainuiomata. She taught Maori both there and later in Australia. She later worked at a recruitment firm, and in 1983 followed her boss to Sydney, Australia when he sold the company. Her next career move was to the marketing department of Rothschild Australia, a merchant bank in Sydney. In 1988 while at Rothschilds, she met Tony Abbott at a Sydney pub. He was then a journalist with The Bulletin. He proposed after taking her on the Kokoda Track. They married at Riverview Chapel on 24 September 1988. She now runs a community-based not-for-profit child care centre in St Ives, New South Wales Sydney, which employs 10 staff and provides a service to about 100 families.(Wikipedia)

JOB HUNTING

In the same year that he married, Abbott decided that writing for The Bulletin was boring and he wrote to a number of “business leaders” asking them for a job. His plea for a job was answered by Sir Tristan Antico, a “prominent member of the wider Jesuit network” who offered Tony Abbott the position of Plant Manager at Sydney Concrete in Silverwater, a job for which he had no qualifications nor experience. Either thumbing his nose at the lifeline he had been offered, as it “wasn’t paying enough money” or being fired for bullying the workers he left this job. Next he accepted a position with The Australian as a journalist. He stayed in this job until John Howard recommended him for a position as the then Federal Liberal leader John Hewson’s press secretary. On 26th March, 1994 he was elected Member for Warringah at a by-election to replace Michael MacKellar.

1997

Defending and Vouching for a Paedophile Priest.

Fr John Gerard Nestor, who attended Sydney’s St Patrick’s Seminary with Mr Abbott in the 1980s, was a priest in the Wollongong diocese in NSW when he was charged with the indecent assault of a 15-year-old altar boy in 1991. Fr Nestor, then aged 44, was convicted in Wollongong Local Court on February 18, 1997, and sentenced to 16 months in jail, with the magistrate describing the case as a “gross breach of trust”. In court, the priest admitted he had – while dressed in boxer shorts and a singlet – slept on mattresses on a floor in the presbytery with the boy and his younger brother some time between June and September 1991 He denied assaulting the boy. Mr Abbott, then a federal parliament backbencher, told the court Fr Nestor was an upright and virtuous man who he had known since 1984. “He was … a beacon of humanity at seminary,” Mr Abbott said …the church never allowed the priest to return to ministry and about four years ago he was struck off the clergy list, or “laicised”, by the Vatican. It is understood Mr Abbott communicated with Fr Nestor twice after the court cases, but has had no contact with him for almost 15 years. “In 1997, Mr Abbott provided a reference for Mr Nestor in an open court. He was subsequently acquitted by a District Court judge,” a spokesman for Mr Abbott told AAP. After the court case, a church professional standards inquiry found Fr Nestor should not be reappointed to the ministry..[16]

The Catholic Weekly,

in its 4th March 2001 issue, wrote; “Fr Nestor was convicted in the Wollongong District Court in 1997 of having molested a former altar boy and was sentenced to 16 months in prison, but the conviction was overturned on appeal the same year. However, the Church remained concerned about Fr Nestor’ suitability for pastoral work. Bishop Wilson asked Fr Nestor to undertake an “appraisal”, which he has consistently refused to do, Fr Jones said. Bishop Wilson then issued a decree that Fr Nestor was not to publically celebrate liturgy. Following this, Fr Nestor appealed to the Vatican, whose view is that Fr Nestor was exonerated by the civil judicial system so should be able to undertake pastoral duties. The Australian bishops, and Bishop Wilson in particular, have earned praise for the tough approach they have taken to the issue of clerical sexual abuse.. [17]

1998

Anti-Pauline Hanson Slush Fund

In 1998, Tony Abbott established a trust fund called “Australians for Honest Politics Trust” to help bankroll civil court cases against the One Nation Party and its leader Pauline Hanson. Prime Minister John Howard denied any knowledge of existence of such a fund. Abbott was also accused of offering funds to One Nation dissident Terry Sharples to support his court battle against the party . . . . Abbott conceded that the political threat One Nation posed to the Howard Government was “a very big factor” in his decision to pursue the legal attack, but he also claimed to be acting “in Australia’s national interest“. [18]

Howard also defended Abbott’s actions saying “It’s the job of the Liberal Party to politically attack other parties – there’s nothing wrong with that.”

June 21st, 2000

ABBOTT PHYSICALLY ATTACKS LEGLESS VIETNAM VETERAN [19]

Well, no, maybe not. [40] But he was certainly ejected from the House by the Speaker on this date. From my Google research it seems he was picking on Cheryl Kernot [20] at the time although there is little in the Hansard report to justify an ejection. Mr SPEAKER —I believe the member for New England has made his point. I think that any action to table Hansard would seem a little inconsistent with the normal course of events in the House—the Minister for Employment Services will excuse himself from the House. Mr Abbott —I was just going to join my friend. Mr SPEAKER —Minister! The member for Warringah then withdrew from the chamber. [21]

Perhaps there was something physical happening. Certainly I see no words to justify a suspension.

One blog claims that “While in Parliament serving under the Howard Government, Tony Abbott once walked in a “threatening manner” towards Labor’s Graham Edwards, a Vietnam Veteran who had lost both his legs during the Vietnam War. What had Graham Edwards done that made Abbott so angry? Graham Edwards had interjected stating “You’re a disgrace”, aimed at Tony Abbott.” [22]

Another blog, “AustralianPolitics.com wrote in 2002, Remember that Abbott was ejected by the Speaker from the House of Representatives chamber on June 21, 2000, along with five other members from both sides. He was the first minister to be suspended since Hugh Roberton in 1961. At one point just prior to his suspension, Abbott was said to have made physical moves towards the Labor benches.” [23]

In 2010, Phillip Coorey wrote of the incident in the Sydney Morning Herald, “Six MPs – a record at the time – including Kernot, were thrown out. So was Abbott, making him the first minister in 40 years to be ejected. He had to be escorted from the chamber after bounding towards the Labor benches to thump a heckling backbencher.” [24]

2003

Conviction of One Nation Leaders

On 20 August 2003, in a separate and this time criminal case, a jury in the District Court of Queensland convicted Hanson and Ettridge of electoral fraud. Both of them were sentenced to three years imprisonment. On 6 November 2003 (delivering judgment the day after hearing the appeal), the Queensland Court of Appeal quashed all of Hanson and Ettridge’s convictions. At this time, media criticism was directed at political interference by leading federal Liberal politician Tony Abbott, who had arranged for the lawyers who instituted the earlier, Sharples action to act on a largely pro bono basis. Investigations by the ABC’s Four Corners programme showed that Abbott had financed this action in an effort to derail the One Nation party. (Wikipedia)

Editorial Comment. Is this where we see the beginning of the “Dirty Tricks Unit” which has all but destroyed the political careers of the innocent Craig Thomson and Peter Slipper? And perhaps undermined the leadership of Malcolm Turnbull. Was Godwin Grech inspired/encouraged by Tony Abbott? After all, one thing we have learned about Tony Abbott is that he does tend to repeat himself.

2005

John Brogden

Between his belfry-bat ears is a coil of such saturnine weirdness that no one, not even his closest friends, would want to unravel it. This makes him do things he comes to regret. His wife, Margie, knows this. In 2005 when she heard that John Brogden had resigned as NSW Opposition leader, after being found in his office with self-inflicted wounds, she told her husband, “Whatever happens, don’t you say anything about it.” The next day, Abbott, then health minister, joked about Brogden’s actions in relation to a change to a Liberal policy: “If we did that, we would be as dead as the former Liberal leader’s political prospects.” Abbott’s response to the subsequent outcry was, “Look, I’ve never claimed to be the world’s most sensitive person.” [25]

2007

Dissing the dying Bernie Barton

“Mr Abbott yesterday described as a stunt a move by Mr Banton to present him with a petition supporting the listing of the mesothelioma drug Alimta on the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (PBS).”Let’s be up front about this, I know Bernie is very sick, but just because a person is sick doesn’t necessarily mean that he is pure of heart in all things,” Mr Abbott told the Nine Network.” [26]

Abusing Nicola Roxon

“Tony Abbott and Nicola Roxon had a terse exchange at the end of today’s debate for the which the Health Minister arrived more than 30 minutes late. As the pair shook hands at the end, the following exchange occurred: Ms Roxon: `You can’t even get here on time’. Mr Abbott: “It certainly wasn’t intentional.” Ms Roxon: “You can control these things mate. I’m sure had you wanted to you could.” Mr Abbott: “That’s bullshit. You’re being deliberately unpleasant. I suppose you can’t help yourself, can you?” Ms Roxon: “I can’t help myself and you’ve well and truly earnt it today.”” [26]

March, 2009

He missed five key votes in Parliament – including the vote on the $42 billion stimulus package – because he was asleep in his office after having consumed too much alcohol. Tony Abbott obviously denied this claiming that he was tired due to helping “with bushfire recovery efforts on the Central Coast four nights earlier”. [27]

Aug, 2010

No doesn’t mean no?

On a day that the Coalition was devoting to winning the women’s vote, Mr Abbott questioned whether when Julia Gillard says no, she really means it. Mr Abbott has knocked back the Prime Minister’s offer for a debate on the economy, saying she initially refused his request for three debates and had changed her mind because she was now in panic mode. “Are you suggesting to me that when it comes to Julia, no doesn’t mean no?” he said. Mr Abbott repeated the comment a number of times. [28]

Feb, 2011

Shit Happens

Opposition Leader Tony Abbott has been forced to defend his comment that “sometimes shit happens” when discussing the events surrounding the death of a digger in Afghanistan last year. Channel Seven broadcast footage which it then deleted but some months late Sky News was able to broadcast footage [29] of Mr Abbott in October discussing the incident with US commander James Creighton. Mr Abbott, in Tarin Kowt, is seen saying: “It’s pretty obvious that, well, sometimes shit happens, doesn’t it?” This was followed by a most unusual TV interview with Mark Riley!

July 2011

Margaret Olley’s Funeral

TONY Abbott’s pursuit of Craig Thomson in parliament has prevented Arts Minister Simon Crean and Liberal frontbencher Malcolm Turnbull from attending the funeral today of revered Australian painter Margaret Olley. Mr Crean and Mr Turnbull – a personal friend of Ms Olley – had been “paired” last week to allow them to attend her state memorial service today. But the opposition cancelled the arrangement, forcing them to attend parliament to vote on a Coalition motion to compel Mr Thomson to answer allegations of alleged credit card misuse. Prime Minister Julia Gillard, who had a state meeting this morning with the President of the Republic of Seychelles, James Alix Michel, was also denied a “pair”. [30]

2012

Well, where do we start and end?

January

Costa Concordia Tony Abbott joked about the Costa Concordia, a cruise ship that sunk claiming 11 lives. Tony Abbott joked “that was one boat that did get stopped, wasn’t it?” When Tony Abbott was advised that he should apologise, Tony Abbott felt that he didn’t need to apologise as it was just “banter”. [31]

Too much to list!

  • Being ejected from the House. [32]
  • Running from the House. [33], [34]
  • Lying about reading the BHP report? [35]

2013

March 6th. Inappropriate Touching

The little reported case of the Aboriginal author, Ms Ali Cobby Eckerman and her breakfast encounter with Tony Abbott at Borcelli’s Cafe in Adelaide. Only the online “First Nation’s Telegraph” has had any coverage of this incident.

On March 6 the mulit-award-winning author was having a working breakfast with two work colleagues at Borcellis Café in Adelaide when she alleged the Federal Opposition Leader approached her table and without making eye contact inappropriately rubbed his finger up and down her bare arm.[36]

Abbott’s response has been that his major witness, Christopher Pearson has since died. [37]

2nd June. Strange use of shoes

From the Crikey grapevine, the latest tips and rumours … Who’s the M-pee? Which Liberal MP apparently pissed in someone’s shoe while a little under the weather at a Japanese restaurant in Canberra last week? [38]

While there is no hard evidence of his involvement, the ephemeral social media could have been read as implying that Abbott was one of the men involved in this incident. Not that this has ever been said. It is a rumour and an implication. The Pee-ee was rumoured to be Malcolm Turnbull.

Sept 6; T’WAS THE NIGHT BEFORE THE ELECTION

The Sydney Morning Herald, on 14th May 2014 , as a part of its budget analysis looked back on how Tony Abbott’s pre-election policies had turned out. [39]

“On the eve of the 2013 federal election Tony Abbott promised no cuts to education, health, or the ABC and SBS, and no changes to pensions. Fairfax Media looks at how those promises fared in the Abbott government’s first budget.

Broadcasting “…no cuts to the ABC or SBS.” (Tony Abbott, September 2013) Treasurer Joe Hockey announced $43.5 million in cuts over four years in Tuesday’s budget.

Education “No cuts to education, no cuts to health…” (Tony Abbott, September 2013) Tuesday’s budget imposed an $80 billion cut to health and education spending over next decade.

Health “no cuts to health…” (Tony Abbott, September 2013)We are not shutting any Medicare locals.” (Tony Abbott, August 2013) All 61 Medicare Locals will now be scrapped and replaced with new local health networks.

Pensions “No changes to pensions” (Tony Abbott, September 2013) Tuesday’s budget confirmed age and disability pensions will fall behind wages growth from 2017 after they are instead linked to inflation.

YES, WE ELECTED HIM

Despite everything we knew about him, we chose to make him Prime Minister. And as his Prime Ministership is still ongoing, perhaps it would be as well to look back on this part of his life when it becomes history.

How will WE, the electors, be judged by that same history?

REFERENCES

Clickable links

[1] The Australian

[2] News.com.au (March 30, 2013)

[3] News Ltd (October 13, 2012)

[4] SMH (July 18, 2004)

[5] SMH (September 17, 2012)

[6] The Guardian (July 10th, 2014)

[7] New Matilda (13th Sept, 2012)

[8] Sydney Alternative Media 8th Jan, 2007

[9] The AIMN

[10] John Menadue Blog

[11] Daily Telegraph

[12] North Coast Voices

[13] ABC Online

[14] Margo Kingston’s “No Fibs” blog.

[15] Courier Mail

[16] The Age

[17] Catholic Weekly

[18] wikipedia (Pauline Hanson)

[19] Pollbludger

[20] ABC PM

[21] Hansard

[22] Phony Tony Abbott blog

[23] Australian Politics.com

[24] SMH

[25] The Monthly

[26] SMH 31st Nov, 2007

[27] Daily Telegraph March 8th, 2009

[28] The Australian, 3rd Aug, 2010

[29] Sky News

[30] The Australian August 24, 2011

[31] Herald Sun – January 19, 2012

[32] You Tube

[33] You Tube

[34] Crikey.com 30th May, 2012

[35] Mamamia 23 August 2012

[36] First Nation’s Telegraph

[37] First Nation’s Telegraph

[38] Crikey

[39] SMH 14th May, 2014

[40] The Australian (Jack the Insider)

[41] Canberra Times, 17th August, 2015

[42] Battlelines, abbott’s autobiography (offline)

[43] FaceBook, TonyAbbottVillageIdiot

[44] Junkee.com

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