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EYE-BALL’s Harry’ Growl on – Bob Carr … Foreign Minister – as profiled by “The Australian’s”Ross Fitzgerald –

November 7, 2012
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– 26th Oct – Maxine McKew’s story – Tales from the Political Trenches –


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– 16th Oct – Hedley Thomas is back – and Gillard knee’s begin to tremble ..


– 9th Oct – Gillard has lost it – Turns Parliament into a sledge-fest over sexism –


– 6th Oct – Poor – Poor – Peter Slipper – The Pumpkin Eater cries crocodile tears in court –


– 5th Oct – The US Presidential Debate …!


– 4th Oct – I just want to “GROWL” at the World!


– 2nd Oct – PM Julia Gillard – Someone most Australians are ashamed of! –


– 23 Sept – Bob Carr – Australian “SOOK” – Ruined NSW and now a GILLARD pony Show –


– 16th Sept: – Royal ‘Boobs’ – who cares –


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– 26th Aug: – The Preponderance of Fate – From the depths of the AWU scandal – to PM –


– 22nd Aug: – Attorney General Nicola Roxon – weighs in to defend her Prime Minister –


– 19th Aug: – Oddball News Wrap – ‘Reel 1′ – News from around the world –


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– 9th Aug: – Australian Gangsters Inc – Part II – Gillard and the ALP by another name!!!


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Title:
– Bob Carr … Foreign Minister –
as profiled by “The Australian’s” Ross Fitzgerald –
| Author: EYE-BALL’s Harry’s Growl | 7th Nov 2012 |
[Photo copied from http://nicholsoncartoons.com.au/wp-content/uploads/2012-03-02-Bob-Carr-fails-X-factor-audition-650.jpg]

The Foreign Minister Bob Carr has an inflated opinion of his own worth – not just my words but demonstrated by his willingness to weigh in on any matter including domestic issues where he should keep his moth shut.

Gillard gifted him an open appointment and Bob certainly decided he was going to be heard on all things Bob Carr – no matter how out of place they might be.

The Australian journalist – Ross Fitzgerald – filed a story on Bob Carr and published on the 3rd Nov 2012 –  it is well worth the read … linked here … or read story below.

A short profile of Ross Fitzgerald:

Ross Fitzgerald is a writer, broadcaster, historian and political commentator. He writes a regular column for The Australian and The Spectator Australia, reviews for the Sydney Morning Herald and The Weekend Australian and regularly appears on ABC Radio, ABCTV, and on Channel 7. He is currently a member of the New South Wales State Parole Authority; the New South Wales Heritage Council; the Administrative Decisions Tribunal; and the NSW Government Expert Advisory Group on Drugs and Alcohol. Emeritus Professor in History and Politics at Griffith University and part-time Professorial Fellow at the Australian Catholic University, Ross Fitzgerald has published thirty-two books, including Under the Influence: Alcohol in Australia (2009), Made in Queensland: A New History (2009), coedited Growing Old (Dis) Gracefully: 35 Australians Reflect on Life over 50 (2008), The Federation Mirror: Queensland 1901-2001 (2002), Seven Days to Remember: The World’s First Labour Government (1999), and Red Ted: The Life of E.G. Theodore (1994), which was short-listed for the NSW Premier’s Prize and for the National Biography Award.

Ross Fitzgerald’s story published in The Australian is reproduced below:

Bob Carr should leave home fires to someone else


| Author: Ross Fitzgerald | Date: Nov 3rd, 2012 | Link to On-Line Story. |

JULIA Gillard has been rightly criticised for her poor judgment.

There are too many examples to list, but they include her farcical announcement of an East Timor processing centre for asylum-seekers; her citizens’ assembly that sank without trace; her panicked decision to suspend live-cattle exports to Indonesia; her introduction of the carbon tax that she promised would not be introduced; her lax oversight of the heavily rorted school building program; and her support for disgraced MPs Peter Slipper and Craig Thomson.

Even though I initially thought it a good idea, another poor decision was her appointment of Bob Carr as Minister for Foreign Affairs. It is now clear that his inflated overconfidence has led to embarrassing blunders. As Foreign Minister, Carr should make an effort to rise above the daily political battles, but he spends as much time casting slurs on Tony Abbott and the opposition as he does talking about international relations.

A disturbing precedent was set on March 13, his first day in the parliament, when Carr was asked at a press conference about the killing of Afghans by a rogue US soldier and whether the soldier should face charges. He initially expressed concern about the loss of life but then launched into a low-rent attack on Abbott by describing him as a “cheapskate hypnotist in a rundown circus”.

It was a rehearsed line that Carr seemed desperate to get out but he showed appalling judgment by delivering it in the context of questions about Afghanistan, where so many Australian soldiers have been killed.

Carr’s decision to intervene in the Slipper-James Ashby sexual harassment court case was a serious lapse of judgment when he said, “This Ashby seems more rehearsed than a kabuki actor.”

Another blunder occurred just 48 hours after his appointment: in response to a question about the potential for a delayed election in Papua New Guinea. he said: “You’ve got Australia placed in a position where we’d have no alternative but to organise the world to condemn and isolate Papua New Guinea. We’d be in a position of having to consider sanctions.”

This outrageous overreach reverberated around the region and beyond. It indicated that Carr’s instincts were to not only bully smaller, developing nations but also to directly interfere in their internal political affairs.

Reportedly shaken by the backlash to his remarks, Carr compounded his error in his statement on March 16 that said: “As I said to (PNG) foreign minister (Ano) Pala in my telephone conversation yesterday, my recent comments have been misunderstood and used out of context.” Rather than admit that he had made a mistake and apologise, Carr demonstrated to the region that when under pressure he would resort to a disingenuous claim that he had been taken out of context, which was clearly not the case.

A raft of other errors, including multiple references to 5500 Australian troops in Afghanistan rather than the 1550 deployed, can be put down to a cavalier attitude to his briefings. Carr’s suggestion that it would be desirable for the Taliban to be part of the Afghan government was not taken seriously. However, his musing that the Syrian conflict might be resolved by the assassination of President Bashar al-Assad was dangerously reckless. For our Foreign Minister to contemplate the assassination of a head of state, without regard for the consequences, in a highly volatile nation in a conflict-ridden region, is deeply disturbing.

Carr threw the book on consular assistance out the window in June when he flew to Libya in an attempt to intervene in the case of Australian lawyer Melinda Taylor, who had been detained while working in the country on behalf of the International Criminal Court. There were constant media interviews as he used the issue to grandstand, in an apparent breach of longstanding policy regarding consular matters.

This set a precedent that will dog Carr during his tenure as Foreign Minister. It quickly came back to haunt him when Australian Alexandra “Pippi” Bean was detained in Libya in September. Her family understandably called for Carr to provide the same level of support Taylor had received and that he fly to Libya to negotiate Bean’s release. Carr claimed that Bean’s circumstances were less serious and refused to travel to Libya, with Bean declaring she felt abandoned by the government.

Carr now has to justify his failure to personally intervene in every case where an Australian is in trouble overseas. He will have to provide constant updates about their welfare, otherwise it can be claimed that he chooses to intervene only in consular cases that boost his media profile.

Carr’s justification for taking his wife on all official trips overseas was: “I’m proud that Helena has accompanied me on every trip I’ve done. Because while I’m talking to the foreign minister, she’s inspecting aid projects or talking to groups of women.

“In every stage in our bid for a UN seat it was an advantage for the Australian Foreign Minister to be accompanied by a wife who was born in Malaysia, of Indian and Chinese parents.” The only thing that saved him from howls of protest from leftist feminist groups was their overt bias towards Labor.

Part of Carr’s problem is that he is Labor’s media gun, willing to comment on virtually anything. This brings us back to his appointment, when the PM did nothing to manage expectations of how the former NSW premier would perform in the job. Indeed, she lauded his appointment as akin to the arrival of a political messiah. This placed enormous pressure on Carr to be a governmental attack dog for Labor, a role he has adopted as one of the leading character assassins of Abbott.

There is a fundamental contradiction between the duties of a foreign minister and those of a domestic political scrapper. Carr would be well advised to spend more time studying his briefs and less time attacking Abbott and the Coalition through the media.

Ross Fitzgerald is the author of 35 books, most recently the political satire Fools’ Paradise.

This Federal Government in on the backside of its tenure, and it is a downhill ride.  Everyone ALP supporter inside and outside of the Government is looking for the panicked signs telling everyone to ‘abandon ship’.  The downhill journey is countered with some brake-power being supplied by better poll numbers for Gillard as preferred PM, and the ALP narrowing the margin with the Opposition.

Can the polls be believed … the stench surrounding Craig Thompson, Peter Slipper, now disgraced HSU boss Mike Williamson, and TWU boss Tony Sheldon, yet more Unionists in trouble,  adds to the toxic cloud over-hanging any ALP revival.

Then there is the ongoing AWU scandal threatening to burst the dam walls surrounding the Prime Minister’s  – ‘I did nothing wrong’ – statements.

All one can observe is the obvious signs that caucus is still shackled to the Prime Minister’s fate, and she is still hell-bent on taking them all down with her.

Kevin Rudd was an outstanding Foreign Minister – he resigned just prior to the Mar 2012 Leadership spill when Gillard forced his hand whilst he was overseas representing Australia in New York.

Gillard has set up a history of ‘ambush’ type tactics to defeat her enemy – she did it in 2010 when she thrust the knife into Rudd’s unsuspecting back – she did it again in Mar 2012 when she called another Leadership spill where in the immediate timeframe preceding the spill vote, her cabinet Ministers came out dumping on Rudd in a vile way.  She did the ‘ambush’ attack again in Aug 2012 when she hijacked an unsuspecting junior and ALP supporting Press gallery – where she took what she thought was the high moral ground since claiming she answered and exhausted all questions on the AWU scandal … her modus operandi is obvious – ‘sucker-punch’ who ever lines up against her at every opportunity.

When Bob Carr was plucked from the ashes in the aftermath of the NSW Labour Party’s descent into obscurity – Gillard believed she was creating a ‘light-bulb’ moment. Hardly anyone saw it coming and it had everybody holding off for a month or two to see how Bob settled into the job and whether being out of Politics for six off years had dulled his political savvy.

Bob Carr had jumped off the sinking NSW boat in 2006 and left a Leadership vacuum that saw the NSW ALP fight over the scraps, eventually each new leader becoming a target until the 2011 NSW election saw the ALP win only 20 seats  in the House – down from 52 from the previous election, and out of a total of 93 seats in the House.  See Wikipedia 2011 NSW Election results here

Bob Carr’s legacy as NSW longest-serving Premier is there for all to see being played out by the current O’Farrell Government, and the previous NSW ALP Government’s after Carr left.

The O’Farrell Government now lurches from crisis to crisis trying to find the funds to plug the gaps Carr and his departure of Leadership failures left behind – they discovered A$1 billion the other day – and we are still to hear whether that was a Labour Party ‘slush-fund’ type discovery unaccounted for from the previous Government, or a genuine Treasury mistake in accounting under O’Farrell’s rule.

Returning to the Fitzgerald’s story above – his observation about Bob Carr and his ‘one-liners’ is modern-day policy for all Ministers and their media staff.  The daily task is to come up with a ‘one-liner’ for their charge to use in a press conference that will hopefully get replayed over and over – giving the author of the comment free media play and the subsequent profile elevation.  it is akin to trawler fishing and using ‘one-liners’ as the bait … use the right slogan and the fish haul can be a bonanza.

It is such an obvious grab and cheapens politics in a way that presents ‘glib’ commentary as more important than policy initiatives. It diminishes the respect we all have and highlights just how ineffective Politicians are in communicating messages when everything is about tagging the other side.

I ask a question – will Bob Carr remain a Senator when the Gillard Government is booted from office?

Resigning from the Senate is a simple process as the Mark Arbib/Bob Carr  turn around proved.   But more importantly as Bob Carr and his wife rack up in excess of $1 million in travel costs on their first eight months in the job – is whether Bob Carr is there for the glory of saving the ALP, having a shot at PM himself, of this is a last hooray before he rides off into the sunset one more time.

Bob as FM is now asking for an increase of $25 million to his budget to fund the new Security Council membership.   What is it that Bob Carr brings to the table – it is a fair question?

If his wife is such an integral part of his overseas trips – providing cultural and language assistance – why is she not on the official payroll?

Of the A$1 million official travel expenditure Carr has accounted for during his 8 months in the job – his wife’s contribution and cost of the air-fares alone amount to near $150k.

Is Mrs Bob Carr reading the federal Government brief’s on Foreign Governments as a part of her ‘cultural’ advisory role?  Does she have secrecy clearance?   Has she been vetted by the AFP to be exposed to official secrets?

This site has produced four previous stories about Bob Carr since his Senate and Foreign Minister appointment in Mar 2012 –

  1. 25th Oct – Foreign Minister Bob Carr & Wife
  2. 08th Oct – Carr’s Lunacy – Suggests Assassination
  3. 26th Sep – Bob Carr – Australian “SOOK”
  4. 06th Apr – New Foreign Minister Bob Carr – wants to be PM

As Foreign Minister’s go – his predecessors in Kevin Rudd, Alexander Downer, and Gareth Evans,  are all hard acts to follow.   I don’t mention Stephen Smith in the job before Kevin Rudd’s appointment for obvious reasons.

Fitzgerald’s summary comment above about Carr needing to spend more time reading his ministerial briefs, and less time being a Gillard sanctioned ‘attack dog’ biting at Tony Abbott’s ankles is well made.

If Bob Carr’s appointment was to beef up Gillards stocks within the NSW right, then Bob Carr is safe for the moment.   But what will happen if Gillard is rolled and the new PM wants to reshuffle Cabinet … where is the value of Bob Carr in that scenario … would Bob Carr have the political clout to sustain his position as Foreign Minister?

As Foreign Minister Kevin Rudd excelled in the job – his creditability on the World stage was obviously enhanced by his PM time and in that context Bob Carr had a hard act to follow.

Before becoming Foreign Minister and in the aftermath of the NSW Premier gig – Bob was a blogger – http://bobcarrblog.wordpress.com/ and still is.   It’s mostly PR stuff these days but before the FM job there were some pretty radical post on the site – since cleaned up and no longer available.

I question Bob Carr’s credentials as I do all our Politicians as is my right to do so.   I do not afford blind respect to any politician these days because they do not respect the electorate.  They openly lie to voters and treat them with disdane when it comes to integrity and the moral sustenance requird to overn a Nation.

I question all of Julia Gillard’s credentials all the time, and for her to have gone outside and hand-picked Bob Carr for the plum job as Foreign Minister, and placed another un-elected Member in her Ministery – means Bob Carr’s appointment is all on her head.

Bob Carr’s real agenda is still to be revealed … for the moment he is Julia’s ‘bitch’ working the Foreign Ministry under a tight leash … when will the real Bob Carr stand up …

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