Kevin – he of the “mysterious” “first-class intellect”

Dennis Shanahan – the journalist who still believes that Rudd is on an extended honeymoon – reports this morning in the Opposition Oracle that Kevin Andrews has been appointed to be the head of the Oppositions Policy Unit. I wonder what brilliant policies Andrews will come up with? 

Turnbull has said of Andrews:

Mr Andrews is a first-class intellect with an impressive capacity to get across a huge amount of policy detail

Would that be the same Kevin Andrews that brought us WorkChoices and was replaced by the avuncular Joe Hockey when the public started to be concerned?

Would that be the same Kevin Andrews that John Clarke QC in the Haneef Inquiry report criticised for “not reflecting deeply enough” on the small amount of detail in the ASIO reports that Haneef was innocent?

Would that be the same Kevin Andrews that John Clarke QC in the Haneef Inquiry report said had “mysterious” timing in cancelling Haneef’s visa?

You just have to wonder who Turnbull is working for!

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24 Responses

  1. Kevin Andrews is a first class dunce; fancy letting him develop policy. As for being critiqued by a judge…well that doesn’t carry much weight. Don’t forget we have a judge who invites dead people to drive it. We also have another judge who exclaimed that in the whole of Townsville he couldn’t find 12 people that weren’t racist; even though he didn’t conduct any interviews. Let’s not take judges seriously.

  2. I forgot to include ‘drive his car’ in my post.

  3. Interesting story on another level as well. The headline could also have read ‘Stares Bishop’ gets the axe. Perhaps a precursor of what is to come. First, undermine the Deputy and then ditch the Leader

    You have to love Dennis. If there is a positive spin to be put on a directionless Opposition, then Dennis is your man.

    I note also that the Leader is electing to holiday in Tasmania rather than sking in the Alps this year. I suppose one can’t be too far away if something nasty were to happen.

  4. This appointment by Turnbull confirms the dearth of talent in his ranks in my opinion.

    It will be interesting to see their position if the government considers resettling some Gitmo detainees in this country too!

  5. I used to have a Kevin Andrews category on the blog. Trashed it because he was a a waste of space. He’s a master of dissembling. Mr Nasty.

  6. The hard right of the party and Minchin is stamped all over this as they yet again cast their authority over the opposition.

    Turnbull is not that stupid, no way. I might have lost the respect I once had for this bloke and now believe he isn’t leadership material, but that doesn’t mean he’s stupid, and this move is (ideological) stupidity and pure hard core right wing driven, which means Minchin.

  7. “It will be interesting to see their position if the government considers resettling some Gitmo detainees in this country too!”

    Indeed it will given that Australia is only one of a hundred nations asked to consider that possibility by the US. Personally I believe that the US created the mess and it’s very cheeky to ask others to solve it.

    But as a spokesman said:

    “Any determination for an individual to come to Australia would be made on a case-by-case basis, a spokesman for Rudd said. All persons accepted to come to Australia would have to meet Australia’s strict legal requirements and go through the normal and extremely rigorous assessment processes.”

    http://politicom.moldova.org/news/rudd-australia-may-take-gitmo-inmates-173209-eng.html

    The claim by Turnbull that Andrews is good on policy ‘detail’ is surely tongue-in-cheek.

  8. Andrews always reminded me of a junior Ruddock, and every word he utters reinforces this impression.

    Conspiracy Theory #squillion. Might this promotion be a pressie for Andrews keeping his mouth tightly shut over the Haneef Affair? Yes ok, far fetched.

    Re Gitmo inmates, agreed that the US should clean up its own mess but then how many former inmates would want to go to the US? If it was me it would be a cold day in hell before I’d put a foot on US soil.

  9. Hi Min, did you have a good xmas?

    Maybe the appointment is some sort of show of solidarity on the Haneef affair?

    Andrews might not have a case to answer from the outcome of the enquiry but he is still political poison in my opinion.

  10. “Might this promotion be a pressie for Andrews keeping his mouth tightly shut over the Haneef Affair”

    Too late for that I think.. He has already spoken to the press in defence of his own position. Brandis has adopted the line that it is Andrews who deserves the apology rather than Haneef. Strange but true.

    Andrews was in the Howard camp (how else would he be given a ministerial post) and therefore unlikely to say ‘ “Howard made (or advised) me to do it. By telling that truth, Andrews would be made to look even sillier and wound Howard as well.

    Adrian says:

    “The hard right of the party and Minchin is stamped all over this as they yet again cast their authority over the opposition”

    Certainly the Old Guard are alive and well. But why rescue Andrews at this point? Nelson was also beholden to them and yet Nelson was able to discard Andrews without an objection.

    It seems to me there is a new dynamic in play and Bishop is the initial target. Andrews is again simply the means. How will Bishop feel being replaced by Andrews? Humiliated! Mad!

    “Those whom the gods wish to destroy they first make mad.” Lol

  11. 9. Agree scaper, there could be something in that.

    Conspiracy or not, Andrews is poison and by opening his mouth could ensure the Coalition are out of government for a long time. Howard left Andrews out to dry on the Haneef affair and when things turned sour more or less blamed it all on Andrews (as he did for the WorkChoices message not getting across to the voters).

    So rather than the hard right old guard with Minchin at the lead stamping their authority, it could be Andrews all on his own saying I want payback for being screwed and playing the patsy when in government.

  12. I should add..although Andrews might have ‘a first class intellect’, he is seriously lacking in compassion. If the Libs think that policy is all about intellect and nothing about compassion, then they are in serious difficulties.

    The only other thing that I can think of is that Turnbull is trying to make a statement that Andrews (hence the former Liberal government) have been completely exhonerated..which he hasn’t because of that single word ‘mystifying’.

    Bishop is a goner..I agree..the knives are out. I hope that Bishop will go down fighting, she has the capacity to do this and I’ll be very disappointed if she doesn’t.

    ps scaper. Hubby is taking me out for lunch :)), will get back to you as soon as I can.

  13. Apparently according to Jack over at The Australian, Andrews has been pencilled in for the job for a few months now.

    This opens a can of worms as far as I see it…was the result of the enquiry already determined by the backroom boys of both sides or was he always innocent???

    Will the government pay compensation or let the legal process where more facts would come to light run its natural course?

    The plot thickens!

  14. Haneef will be paid off, I have absolutely no doubt on that.

  15. But will he get the apology that he desires to clear his name?

  16. Probably not scaper. The current government will say it was the responsibility of the previous government, and already ministers in the former government are ignoring the finer damning points of the findings and saying they were completely exonerated plus one is demanding an apology from the current government and Haneef.

    The only one they might get a regret from is Keelty.

  17. Just a thought from a haus frau. If Haneef sues which seems likely, can other evidence be required/witnesses required to attend?

  18. Adrian. Haneef deserves to paid off. Who can forget the pic splashed over the newspapers of Dr Haneef hunched over in a divvy van wearing a prison jumpsuit/the trashing of his flat/the ongoing demonisation by senior officials and politicians. All culminating in Andrews deciding that Dr Haneef failed the character test and based upon nothing more than a whim and mystifying one at that.

  19. Yes Min he deserves to be compensated and every cent of taxpayers money he gets, I just wish it was Howard’s, Ruddock’s and Andrew’s personal money.

    My point is that it won’t go as far as court and Haneef will be given the money on a silence proviso. If civil action is taken that goes to court, then yes Min those ministers and staffers that were ordered not to attend the enquiry would be required to testify under oath in court if Haneef’s lawyer calls them to. That ‘mystifying’ statement would have to be demystified.

  20. Priorities? Credibility?

    “Our task in Opposition is two-fold: first to keep exposing the incompetence of Mr Rudd, Mr Swan and the Government. There is no easy blow in Opposition, especially with a left-wing media still besotted with Labor,” Mr Andrews writes.

    “Our second task is to rebuild a credible policy alternative … That doesn’t mean every policy detail from A-Z, but it does mean general directions and some key policies.”

    It is good that he’s getting some ‘rehab’ time in, even if he’s still living in denial. Does ‘rehab’ normally work well with a denialist mindset?

  21. 19. Adrian of Nowra

    those ministers and staffers that were ordered not to attend the enquiry would be required to testify under oath in court if Haneef’s lawyer calls them to. That ‘mystifying’ statement would have to be demystified.

    Doubtful Adrian…which is why it would have taken the statutory powers of a Royal Commission to demystify things, and even there Crown privilege still pertains to many matters. In the civil system those privileges would undoubtedly also be relied upon to avoid discovery and the compulsion to tender evidence. In any event, that nice Mr Clarke has already rehearsed everyone’s excuse…the Alan Bond gambit…’it was a long time ago and things are hazy to the recollection’. All the same, I concur with your analysis that it will all be made to just go away; the only real question is the quantum of damages to be paid; well, that and the inability of the people who fecked up to say ‘sorry’.

  22. Them Egyptians have it pegged – “…nothing is new..!

    Them at the top play silly buggars at our expense (literally) while we stand around (or in this case sit around) wringing our hands…

    I guess the alternative is anarchy?

  23. This is clear evidence that noting has changed in the grand old Royal Blue party. Serfchoices and racism will again be the cornerstone of their policies if and when they are ever trusted again. How stupid could Turdball be, the Aussie people are not stupid, even if they promise that they won’t screw the worker again, they will see it as a non core promise. The theory that Minchin is behind this, maybe, but if so, then Turdball cannot possible remain leader of the party. He will simple be a puppet with Minchin having his hand..well, we all know where. If it not Minchin’s doing, then we can look forward to a long term on the backbenches.
    My theory is thsat Turdball will be able to trust that he will not scrutinise his half baked policies and policy responses enough to give hijm any giref, that way Turdball will be able to continue to fire from the hip with the blessing of his incompetent policy overseer.

  24. Kevin Andrews would not even be considered for the second XI of first class intellects.

    Might get to be vice-captain of the local C-grade amateur team. Maybe. And only because he provides the transport.

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