We have to hand it to NSW’s Independent Commission Against Corruption (ICAC). They’ve certainly got their work cut out for them.
This is a grab from an interactive map produced by the ABC – it rearranges itself when you click on anything – a person or a relationship line. Bear with me here (colour blindness is a real bugger so forgive me if I see different colours to you – BUT – pink dots indicate a neutral relationship , a bluey green grey dot indicates a friendly relationship and the orangy dot indicates a hostile relationship. Light blue circled names have been investigated by ICAC.
As a confirmed conspiracy theorist, I love those circles like “Australian Water Holdings” (Australian Water Holdings (AWH) is an infrastructure company that consults on water services. It is currently being investigated by ICAC over attempts by its management to procure a public-private partnership with Sydney Water that would have vastly increased the company’s value, as well as the billing of inappropriate payments and expenses to Sydney Water.), “Free Enterprise Foundation” (A Liberal Party trust that ICAC alleged was used to funnel prohibited donations to the Liberal Party from developers, who are banned from making donations) and “The Terrigals” – (A sub-faction within the right wing of the New South Wales Labor Party, headed by Eddie Obeid and named after Mr Obeid’s beach house at Terrigal).
It’s important to note that not every person on this map is (or is likely to be) alleged to be corrupt. For example, Nathan Reese when he was premier, sacked Ian MacDonald – a member of the Terrigals ICAC has found to have acted corruptly, and like Morris Iemma, Nathan Reese was dumped by the ALP when the Terrigals withdrew their support. Kristina Keneally was given the poison chalice of the premier’s job and she torpedoed a doctored cabinet minute that would have handed a lot of cash to AWH. And lastly, nobody has proven that Barry O’Farrell has acted corruptly – but he did have a massive memory failure about accepting an inappropriate gift (smelling quite like a setup if you ask me) and he did / does have some dubious friends – which is not of itself a crime.
This sort of relationship map is a well-used tool by police investigating organised crime and when a relationship map starts to look more complicated than a map of the greater Tokyo Urban Transit system, you can bet you are looking at one seriously networked crime empire.
Go over to the ABC site and have a good look at the interactive map and ask yourself, if you are / were a NSW voter, who the fuck would you vote for in 11 months time ?
Enjoy the information while you can. Arthur Sinodinos was John Howard’s chief of staff and Tony Abbott regards John Howard as God – and since Tony has it in for the ABC, I’d say excellent reporting like this probably has a short shelf life – until Australia sobers up and throws out Tony and a whole lot of other counts* on both sides of politics.
* Delete the vowel of your own choosing.