Friday, September 23, 2011

Sophie Mirabella = Craig Thomson!

EN ROUTE to the golf club this morning, thoughts of putting the new Callaway driver to good use were pushed aside by the sudden, urgent need to find the brake pedal, pull over and try not to throw up. It was Jon Faine’s ABC radio show that did it, more particularly his quite astonishing conversation with Age investigative reporter Michael Bachelard, who has two stories in this morning’s paper about Sophie Mirabella, her former relationship with a much older man and his estranged children’s apparent suspicion that the Liberal MP alienated their father’s affections in order to plunder his estate.

The story itself is dubious enough. Even by Bachelard’s account, Mirabella had long-standing (and horizontal) ties with former law professor Colin Howard. She appears to have looked after him during his decline into dementia, and he seems to have been genuinely fond of her, even after their relationship foundered and she married another. The kids are complaining that he gave Mirabella money to win her seat and, later, to help her buy a Wangaratta home. They also believe her to be the sole beneficiary of his estate, said to be worth around $1 million.

There is no point in recapping the details at greater length. They are available here and here. What needs to be mentioned – and borne in mind by anyone tempted to purchase another copy of the Age as produced by its current staff and management – is Bachelard’s rationale for the public’s “right” to know of some very nasty family business. A trained reporter would have taken down the quote verbatim, but here is an amateur’s rendering as scratched on the back of a scorecard with the stub of a blunt pencil. Remember, what follows is not verbatim, but it certainly captures the gist of Bachelard’s justification for dragging the feud into print:
FAINE: How do you justify this intrusion? 
BACHELARD: Well, if Craig Thomson can be investigated for using union credit cards to hire prostitutes, Mirabella’s relationship with Howard and what his children are saying is fair game.
Again, that is a paraphrase. If the transcript is published on the ABC site, it will be added to this post. In the meantime, though, consider the tortured logic The Age applies to its selection of worthy stories: Craig The Brothel Creeper, is copping flak, therefore it is fair and just to give a bit of the same to a Liberal.



  1. Now of course Bachelard will do the right thing and seek out the relatives of Brian Wilson and get his side of the story regarding Julia, as it seems no one has ever heard his side, right?

  2. Sophie had a relationship with a man of formidable intelligence as she herself is a lawyer of intelligence. The other woman had a relationship, first with an immoral cheat of union members money and then with a hairdresser. I wonder how the most powerful woman of a country has intellectual discourse with her partner over an evening meal about the welbeing of Australia and Australians.

  3. Well, we know how balanced and agenda-driven the Age is don't we? Because this saga involves a Liberal MP, hunting season is declared open but when a story involves past peccadillos our Labor PM, the hounds must remain kennelled - and muzzled.

    It will be interesting to see if the ABC (apart from shock-jock, Faine) runs with the Mirabella story.


  4. Sophie Mirabella does seem to cop more than the fair share of abuse from the Left - IIRC a well known former female ALP MP accused her of carrying a "demon baby" when she was pregnant.

  5. All this crap about Sophie, yet we haven't heard anything from the ex Mrs Emerson? Typical labor student politics, on the way down throw as much shit as possible. I can't believe a professional journalist is proud to have this published.

  6. What's next ?
    Pyne got a parking ticket in '95 ?