Note: Where available, the PDF/Word icon below is provided to view the complete and fully formatted document
Disclaimer: The Parliamentary Library does not warrant the accuracy of closed captions. These are derived automatically from the broadcaster's signal.
Sky News On The Hour 4pm -

View in ParlView

(generated from captions) captioned by Ai-Media This program will be live

Good afternoon. Welcome to

the program. I'm David

Speers. The report into

allegations of past abuse allegations of past abuse

within Defence was always

going to make for disturbing

reading. Well, today the

Government has released

volume 1 of this report and

it agrees that people will be

shocked by what they read.

This process was set up after

last year's sex skype affair

at the Australian Defence

Force Academy. More than 800 people came forward with

complaints of abuse whilst

serving in Defence ranks

dating back to the 1950s.

The report has been compiled

by DLA Piper and it does list

amongst the most disturbing

findings that 24 cases of

alleged rape took place at

ADFA in the late 1990s, not

all that long ago, and yet

none of the cases resulted in

any court action being taken.

It goes on to say that some

of the young men involved -

allegedly involved at the

time - could well now be in

middle and senior ranks

within the Defence Force.

The Government says it's

close to announcing what

happens next. Will it hold a

royal commission, will it

compensate those who have

suffered at the hands of

others within Defence? Well,

Defence Minister Stephen

Smith joins me now ahead of

tonight's community cabinet meeting, which is happening

at a high school in Brisbane.

Minister, thanks for joining

us. Can I start by asking

how much of this have you

read, how much of this report

have you read, and have the

contents shocked you? Well,

I have, as you would expect,

gone very carefully through

this first report. I've

previously released a

redacted version of the

executive summary. We've

seen recently, without my

objection, the release of the

executive summary itself, and

today I've released all of

the first report, including

some supplementary materials

that I received in April.

Subject to some redactions

consistent with freedom of

information legislation to

protect personal privacy and

the like. I've read this

very carefully but, more

importantly, I've also

received now the final

version or the final report

from DLA Piper and it's that

document which is now being very carefully considered by

me in particular, but also

I'm getting assistance from

the Attorney-General. I've

released this material now so

that people fully understand

the sensitive, the serious

nature of what we're dealing

with and also the complexity,

so that people fully

appreciate the challenges

that lay ahead so far as the Government is concerned in dealing with these

matters. I'm just trying to

get to your personal reaction

to this, though. You said you've gone through this in

detail. There's pretty

shocking stuff there. Well,

there is shocking stuff in

it, and I said earlier today

that people will be shocked

by it. It doesn't make for

good or for pleasant reading,

but I do make the point I've

made before: at this stage

these are allegations. They

are regarded or described as

some over 700 plausible

allegations, so they have to

be treated seriously, but allegations against people of

course need to be tested and

people need to be given a proper opportunity of

responding to or rebutting

those allegations. So they

are allegations, but in the

aftermath of the ADFA skype

scandal, with the tremendous

publicity that that attached

and with the volume and the

number of complaints that

came to my office, came to

the media, came to Defence

itself, I established this

process and we're now working

our way carefully to its

conclusion. But this is more

than just allegations against the individuals involved;

this goes to the leadership

as well of ADFA or, indeed,

Defence, because it talks

about no action being taken

against alleged rapes, 24

alleged rapes, at ADFA. That

would be potentially criminal negligence, wouldn't

it? Well, I think there are a

number of issues. Firstly,

we have to be careful about

how we proceed in the face of

allegations, and that's what

we're doing. Secondly, in

addition to over 700 plausible allegations which

need to be considered, there

are systemic issues here that

have to be also carefully

considered. The pathways to

change document which the

Chief of the Defence Force

and the secretary to the department put out earlier

this year in response to a

range of reviews that I

instituted makes a very frank

acknowledgment that in the

past there has been, regrettably, a failure to

meet modern-day community standards, but there has also

been, regrettably, in the

past something of a failure

of the system to not respond

appropriately to allegations

or complaints, to turn a

blind eye. So we have to

examine not just the individual allegations but

also whether any complaints

that came forward were dealt with properly or

appropriately. It's not just

the allegation or the

complaint that is made, it is

how the system responds to

that. That was, if you like,

very much at the centre of

the so-called ADFA skype

issue. It was not just the

complaint that was made, it

was how the system responded

to that complaint. Well, as I

say, it's not just those

individuals allegedly

involved, but others as well.

In relation to those individuals, the report does

say that some of them could

now be in middle and senior

ranks in the ADF. What's the

urgency on this, on

identifying those who may

still be potentially in

senior positions in

defence? Well, "could" is a

possibility. As I have, as

has the chief of the Defence Force, acknowledged in recent

times, that is a possibility.

But, again, if our people in

the system against whom

allegations have been made -

they're entitled to put a

view, they're entitled to

fair process. But as the Chief of the Defence Force

has made clear when he

responded to these matters

earlier this year, if people have done the wrong thing, they will be brought to

justice. Now, that may well

be justice through the civil

criminal process, it may well be justice through the

military process or it may

well be through a separate or

different legal or judicial

mechanism, including the potential of a royal

commission. If people are in

the system and they are found

to have engaged in

wrongdoing, whether that wrongdoing was against

another member of the ADF or whether that wrongdoing was

the turning of a blind eye,

then they will be dealt with,

but they'll be dealt with the prism of the pathways to change document which the secretary to the department

and the chief of the Defence

Force signed up to. It's

their document, earlier this

year. It essentially says

there has to be in the modern

day zero tolerance to bad

behaviour and zero tolerance

to turning a blind eye when complaints are made by

members of the Australian

Defence Force. Can I ask you,

though, this isn't just about

past issues. The DLA Piper

review found a document on

the ADFA website called Lego

lingo, full of sexist and

racist lingo, now taken down.

The fact this was there when

they began their inquiry, how

does that reflect on the

leadership at ADFA? Well, it

doesn't reflect well. There's no point beating

about the bush in that

respect. One of the

inquiries or reviews that I

instituted in the aftermath

of the ADFA scandal was not

just this external reference

to the independent law firm

DLA Piper; it was also the

use of social media,

including the use of

Facebook, including the use

of digital and modern media.

People I think are now

growing to understand -- But

the leadership in ADFA - do

you have confidence in

commandant Bruce Kafer? I

have confidence in the Chief of the Defence Force and the

vice Chief of the Defence

Force, who are in the chain

of command, to whom

commandant Kafer is

responsible to. Now, I'm not

going to retraed over old

ground. It isn't old ground.

You have been critical of him

in the past. Now you're

agreeing this finding, there

was a document full of sexist

and racist lingo, doesn't

reflect well on the

leadership at ADFA. Is this

a further blow to commandant

Kafer? I don't characterise

it in that way. The fact

that it was there was

unfortunate and I'm not

proposing to do anything

other than say that was regrettable, it shouldn't

have occurred, it shouldn't

have appeared. I made my

view clear about the way in

which ADFA and Commandant Kafer responded to the so-called ADFA skype issue

and I have not taken, and

won't take, a backward step

so far as that is concerned.

But which are' dealing here

with separate issues and

there is nothing I have seen

which would cause me, other

than to proceed on the basis that the Chief of the Defence

Force, the vice Chief of the

Defence Force, exercising

their chain of command and

chain of control authority,

are insuring that ADFA is

managed well and is attentive

to attuned to these

difficulties, which aren't just addressed to ADFA, they

are addressed to all of the

ADF. The sex discrimination

commissioner's report, Ms Bod

Rick's report, dealing with

ADFA, essentially says there

have been substantial

improvements made in the management of ADFA on

cultural issues, but more

work and progress needs to be

done. We're yet to see her

final report into all of the

Australian Defence Force, but

my instinct is I expect

she'll say much the same

thing about the Defence Force

generally, that in the past

there has been inappropriate

or bad treatment of women

within the system, that has improved, but we're not at

the end of that journey. Minister, just a

final question, if I can, on

a completely separate matter.

You and other Ministers have

been ravrping up criticism of

Tony Abbott over his plan to

turn back the boats. You today suggested he was not fit for office because of

this plan. In the past,

though, both Kevin Rudd and

Julia Gillard have commented in favourable terms about what the Howard Government

did in turning back the

boats. Well, the Howard

Government instructed the

Navy to turn back the boats

in a limited number of

occasions during a limited

period between, effectively,

2001 and 2003. The current

chief of Navy, vice admiral

Griggs, was engaged in that

process and he's given evidence at Senate Estimates

which refers to one

successful exercise he was

engaged in and an

unsuccessful exercise. It

has become crystal clear from

a small number of boats

turned back to Indonesia that

the people smugglers now effectively instruct people

on board to disable the boat

and so you immediately go to

essentially a rescue

situation. It's that rescue

situation which places not

just asylum seekers at risk,

but places Navy personnel at

risk. The quality ative

difference in the last few

days has been I think two

things: firstly, Tony Abbott

refusing to have the courage

to look the President of Indonesia in the eye when he

met him in Indonesia and tell

him face to face, person to

person, that this was his

policy; and, secondly, his

bald-faced admission that

this was dangerous, that this

was a dangerous practice, but

that Navy and Navy personnel

could effectively cop that.

Now, to my mind, that is irresponsible. To my mind,

that doesn't show the necessary judgment required

of a person to be the Prime

Minister of this country.

He's running for the office

of Prime Minister. He should

have had the courage to say

to President youth owno face

to face this is my policy and

suffer the consequences so

far as Indonesian diplomacy

was concerned. He shouldn't

simply turn a blind eye to

the fact the current chief of

Navy, former chief of the Defence Force have all said

that to engage in this

practice is to put Australian

Defence Force personnel at

risk. He's doing that

knowingly. That is

irresponsible. To my mind,

that renders him not a fit

and proper person to

discharge the high office of

Prime Minister. Defence

Minister Stephen Smith, we'll

let you go. Good luck with

that community cabinet

meeting that's going to take

place in the school hall

there behind you. Thanks for

joining us this afternoon. Thanks, David, very

much. Coming up on the

program we're going to be

shifting gear and looking not

just at the boat issue,

turning back the boats and

the increasing attacks that

we've seen from the

Government over the last few

days, but also a little later

we're going to look at - we

talk about the treatment of

women. We're going to look

at girls, Dolly magazine

copping flak today for

awarding a 13-year-old its

Cover Girl prize. There's

been criticism from a former

editor of the magazine.

We'll talk to her about that.

Right now, let's check in on

the top news stories. Back

to the news centre. David,

thank you. Hello, everyone.

NSW police have released CCTV

footage of the moments before

a teenager was fatally

punched near a train station

in Sydney's inner east. A

murder investigation is now

under way and officers say

the attack was un provoked.

On Saturday night, Tom Kelly

and a group of friends headed

out for the first time to

Sydney's kings cross

celebrating one of their

mates' 18th birthday. As

they walked south along busy

Victoria Street, a shocking

and un provoked attack. Tom,

who was on the phone, was

kinghit. A single blow to

the face by a random

attacker, causing him to

stumble and fall on to the

pavement. Friends and

passers by rushed to his

side, but when paramedics

arrived, they realised

something was very wrong.

This is a very rare

situation. Tom had no idea

who the offender was. There

was no altercation

previously. He's just a really nice young man going

out with his friends for a

night out. For two days,

family and friends rallied by

his bedside, trying to come to terms with what had

happened. He touched so many

lives, lives that we didn't

know until he was lying there

tragically in the hospital

the last two days. But last

night his parents made a heart-wrenching decision, turning off his life

support. We donated Thomas's

organs last night. We felt

that his death should result in some life to other

people. His father Ralph

recalled Tom's last words

before he left the house.

The last words that both

Cathy and I said to him was

"Please be careful, please

take care" and he said,

"Don't worry, I will and I

love you". A man hunt is now

under way and both police and

Tom's parents are struggling

to understand why. We're

looking for a male in his mid

to early 20s. He's about 170

centimetres tall, Caucasian,

solid build, short brown

hair. He was wearing dark denim jeans and a dark

jumper. I urge any witnesses

or people who have knowledge

of this callous assault on an

innocent young man to contact

kings cross Police or

Crimestoppers. His parents

have urged anyone with any

information to come forward.

We don't want it to happen to

anybody else - so anybody who

can come forward and say something to get this person

off the streets. So it

doesn't happen to another

family and nobody else is

ever in a position we're

in. You can watch that news

conference from the police

force in full. Simply press

red on your remote and look

for our dedicated channel on

Sky News Multiview. Chocolate retailer Darrell

Lea has been placed into

voluntary administration,

putting hundreds of jobs at

risk. Administrators PPB

advisory say it's urgently reviewing the business and

looking to sell the company

as a going concern. At this

time it is business as usual

and our primary focus is for

the employees and store

owners that are impacted by

this unfortunate event. Prime

Minister Julia Gillard says

she's hopeful the iconic

Darrell Lea brand can live

on. Darrell Lea is such an

icon of a business.

Everybody has probably eaten

a lot of their rocky road

over the course of their

lives. I know I have. The

chocolate chain, which was

founded in 1927, employees

around 700 people at its

Sydney manufacturing base and

shops across Australia, New

Zealand and the United

States. Workers at a Coles

distribution centre in

Melbourne are picketing

outside the warehouse in a

protest that could stop the

supply of several supermarket

items. Around 600 staff at

the Somerton National

Distribution Centre are

demanding the same working

conditions they say are

afforded to other warehouse

workers. These include

penalty rates for shift work

and the ability to bank

overtime. They formed a picket line blocking trucks

from entering the major distribution centre. They

don't want to budge on what

we're asking for, which I

don't think is too much.

It's just a fair day's pay

for a fair day's work. The

protest could affect the

supply of toothpaste, toilet

paper and imported beer to

Melbourne stores. Toll, the

company which manages the

warehouse, says it's offered

workers a 4% pay rise. Just

before I go, a reminder, join

Sky News and Australia's

public affairs channel for

complete coverage of tonight's community cabinet

meeting in Ipswich at the

high school. It's a chance

for members of the public to

raise issues directly with

the Prime Minister and her

executive team. Coverage

tonight from 6.30 eastern on

Sky News National and APAC

channel 648. Patchy rain in

the east and west, dry

elsewhere. It's 18 minutes

past 4 eastern time. Back to

David in Canberra as PM

Agenda continues. Vanessa,

thank you. After the break,

we're going to look at what's

happening in China. A report

comes out once a year called

the China Update, released

today. This is some lead ak

dem ices, policy makers,

contributing to their views

where China is at and

heading. It's a story

shaping our economy and

strategic outlook in what's

known as the China Century.

We'll hear from Professor

Ross Garnaut on that. Stay with us.

You're watching PM Agenda.

Well, the rise of China is

reshaping this region and

certainly having a big impact on Australia's economic

future and our strategic

outlook as well. Today the

China Update, compiled by the

ANU, the Australian National University, in conjunction

with the Crawford School of

Economics, was released.

Together with it, the

secretary of the Department

of Foreign Affairs, Denis

Richardson, has spoken about

the need for a more welcoming

stance in relation to Chinese

foreign investment in

Australia, something that has

been politically sensitive in

recent years. Someone who

founded this China Update

paper and also a former ambassador for Australia to

China and a well-known

economist is Professor Ross

Garnaut, head of the ANU's

China economy program.

Professor Garnaut spoke a

little earlier about today's

report to my colleague Kieran

Gilbert, where China is at,

is it at risk of faltering economically and what

opportunities are there for

Australia. Professor Garnaut, thanks very much for

your time. Good to be here, Kieran. One concept discussed

at last night's launch of the

China Update was the notion

of China getting old before

it gets rich, the ageing

demographic, the changing

labour supply, the enormous

challenges for China. Is it

in a position to put growth

on a more sustainable footing? Well, we've been

living with a squeeze on

population growth and labour

force growth for some time.

The latest census data - and

Professor Si Phong went

through that with us

yesterday - shows the deceleration of population

growth is faster than earlier

anticipated. The latest data

suggests that the average

number of children per woman

in China might be as low as

1.19, which is very low,

right down there with Japan

and Russia and the southern

European countries. The

latest data suggests that the

labour force, or people aged

between, say, 15 and 60, has

already started to decline,

if not this year then next

year. So when you have very

strong economic growth and no

growth in the labour force

and soon a decline in the

labour force, you get very

strong pressure on wages.

That was the other

interesting thing we were

discussing yesterday, how

rapid ly wages for unskilled

workers are rising, both in

rural and in urban

China. What are some of the

policies, do you think, - the

consensus is that China needs

to start adopting to deal

with that structural change.

There needs to be

recognition, and there is

recognition, in China that you can't grow in the old

way, which is just doing more

and more of the old things.

You can't grow just through expanding the industries that

use a lot of labour. The old

textiles industries, simple

manufactures, there has to be

a big investment in upgrading

of skills, big investment in

education, a more flexible

labour market, better functioning capital market,

so that you use capital very efficiently, because China is

going to need to replace

using workers by using a lot

more capital, a lot more

technology. Now, China has already started this adjustment, but there's a

long way to go and it has to

run very fast, given the

squeeze in the labour

market. It's a mixed outlook,

according to who you listen

to, economic forecasters on

China. What's your sense?

Do you think that they will

be able to put growth on a

more sustainable footing? I

think that's the most likely

outcome, and what one might think of the natural rate of growth, the rate of growth

that can be sustained without putting pressure on

inflation, is probably in the

process of easing back from

around 10% in the first

decade of the century to

around 7.5% in the decade

ahead of us, decade and a

half ahead of us. If they

try to run at the old growth

rates, around 10%, then you

will get lots of pressures -

inflation, danger s of

instability - but you'll only

get that 7.5% smoothly over

the next 15 years if the policy adjustments that I've

been talking about are made. Lots of people understand

that in China, lots of the adjustments have started, but

it's not an easy adjustment.

Everyone is aware that things

can go wrong. A few other

adjustments that are often

talked about, if we can touch

on them, in equality, corruption, are these something that Chinese

authorities are cognisant of,

are dealing with? Yes,

corruption of course is a

particularly hard one in any

society, in any political

system. It can get in the

way of dealing with some of

your problems if you can't

clean it up. Yes, there is a

lot of awareness that this is

an issue that has to be dealt

with. But it's not an easy

one to deal with. In

equality is being eased by

the pressures in the labour

market, because during the

period of rapid growth of

simple labour-intensive manufacturing industries, you

had a long period in which

businesses became more and

more productive, but they

weren't paying their workers

that much more, so profits

were rising, the source of in

equality as the growth of

profit s without growth of

wages - now real wages are

growing faster than profit.

So that's correcting the

biggest single source of in

equality. So long as you get

smooth continuation of growth

as I see it, you'll get an

easing of that source of in

equality. There's a change of leadership looming. The party chairman will

transition in October this

year. The presidential

change is early next year.

What risks are inherent in

such a transition and should

we expect any major shift in

approach under the new

leadership? I don't expect

any radical change and the

whole emphasis has been on

continuity. But when you get

changes in personnel, you get

changes in the support

systems for those leaders - not all that different to changes of the same kind in

other political systems. So

it can take a while for the

new relationship s to be put

in place. People immediately

under the top leadership will

be wondering how they'll

stand, who will do better and

who will do worse. There

will be a little bit of

anxiety, a little bit of

jostling. Until it settle s

down, things might not go

quite as smoothly as we've

been used to in the last 10

years, but there's no reason

to expect that that won't

settle down. Professor

Garnaut, we appreciate your

insights and time. Thanks.

Good to be here. Professor

Ross Garnaut talking there to

Kieran Gilbert, of course so

much rests on the growth

story in China for all of us

here in Australia. It's

worth keeping across the

latest there. After the break, we'll look at the

shocking story today, the

death of an 18-year-old boy,

young man, in Sydney, Thomas

Kelly. He was punched

randomly, it seems, and

killed by that single punch

on a night out in Kings

Cross. What's been the political fallout to this - stay with us.

You're watching PM Agenda.

Time for a check of the news

headlines. Here's Vanessa

Trezise. NSW police have

released CCTV footage of the

moments before a teenager was

fatally punched near a train

station in Sydney's inner

east. 18-year-old Thomas

Kelly was punched by an

unknown man as he walked

along Victoria Street in

Kings Cross just after 10

o'clock on Saturday night.

It was his first visit to the

Cross to celebrate a mate's

birthday. A murder investigation is now under

way. The offender fled the

scene, while the teenager was

taken to hospital with head

injuries. He died yesterday

after his life support system

was switched off. The

Government is still preparing

a formal response after releasing the full report

into allegations of sexual

abuse in the Defence Force

spanning six decades. The

DLA Piper report identified

24 cases of alleged rape in

the late 1990s that never

made it to trial. The report

also raised the possibility

that some alleged

perpetrators may now be in

middle and senior management

positions in the ADF. The

Government says a royal

commission is still possible. The Prime Minister has urged

the Opposition Leader to

reconsider his decision not

to join the multi-party

committee on asylum seeker

policy. Tony Abbott says the

Coalition will not join the

reference group, which will

work with a panel chaired by

former Defence Force chief

Angus Houston. The Government says the

Opposition's policy of towing

back asylum seeker boats to

Indonesia will not work

because passengers will

sabotage the boats, turning

the operation into a search

and rescue mission. Mr

Abbott has also admitted that

such operations could

endanger the lives of Navy

personnel. Chocolate

retailer Darrell Lea has been

placed into voluntary administration, putting

hundreds of jobs at risk.

Administrator s PPB Advisory

say it's urgently reviewing

the business and looking to

sell the company as a going

concern. The chocolate

chain, which was founded in

1927, employees about 700

people at its Sydney

manufacturing base and at

shops across Australia, New

Zealand and the United

States. In sport, the

Roosters are weighing up

whether to accept a two-match

ban handed down to Jared

Hargreaves. The Kiwi forward

was charged twice by the NRL match review committee

following separate incidents

in the Roosters '14-all draw

with Cronulla. He can escape

just a one-match ban with an

early plea. Vanessa, thank

you. As we heard in those

news headlines, a shocking

story today, a young man, 18

years old, Thomas Kelly, died

late last night. He was king

hit over the weekend on what

appears to have been his

first night out in Kings

Cross in Sydney. Randomly he

was walking with a couple of

friends, someone has come up,

punched him, he's hit the floor, been rushed to

hospital and died. His

parents joined police in

fronting the media today,

remarkably so. It was a very

emotional, understandably,

address to the media, where

they appealed for witnesses

to come forward. Take a look

at what his mother had to say

as part of that. We don't

want it to happen to anybody

else. So if anybody,

anybody, can come forward and

say something to get this

person off the streets so it

doesn't happen to another

family and nobody else is

ever in the position that

we're in. Imray, difficult

not to be moved by this, but

has there been much reaction

to it politically or this is

seen as simply the reality of

dangerous life on the streets

of inner-city Sydney? More of

the latter, David. The Labor

Opposition in NSW has not

bought into this tragedy at

all, for fairly obvious

reasons. The Opposition has

been very, very active around

another law and order issue,

which is the gun play and gun

crime that have been rampant in western Sydney over the

past six or eight months.

But on this one they've been

completely silent. I think,

David, this is, as I say,

more of the latter of your

two alternatives, just a

terrible act of random

violence to which there's no

obvious public policy

application. So I'm not

anticipating that Opposition

Leader John Robertson will be

on the air on this one,

except perhaps to express his

own sorrow. I'm sure that's

right. Let's all hope they

can track down whoever was

responsible for this.

Speaking of John Robertson,

the NSW Labor Leader, Imre,

he and the rest of the party

will be gearing up for this

weekend's NSW ALP conference, always an interesting event

on the political calendar. This time around we've seen

in the build-up to it a brewing stoush between Labor

and the Greens. How do you

see all of this? It is

emanating most particularly

from the NSW right of the

Labor Party. What's going on

here? Well, I think the

interesting thing that's

emerged in recent days, since

they unveiled all this in the Weekend Australian on

Saturday, is just how long and coordinated the planning

around this attack on the

Greens has been. Clearly,

prime movers in the Labor

Party in NSW, such as Sam

Dastyari, State secretary,

Paul Howes, workers union

boss, and perhaps to a

smaller extent John

Robertson, clearly have been thinking about this

rebranding for a long time. The other interesting thing

about it is they don't seem

to care about the extent to

which this could discomfort

or even embarrass Julia

Gillard, whose Government, of

course, relies on Greens

support in Canberra. Do you

think it does embarrass Julia

Gillard? I don't see how it

can do otherwise, David. She needs the support of the

Greens to get her legislation

through, but in the mean

time, her NSW comrades are

using quite extraordinary

language about the Greens,

how they're as extreme as One

Nation, how their agenda is

extremist and loony. This

can't be making Julia

Gillard's row any easier to

hoe in Canberra. It suggests

the right faction - this is

coming from the right, and

we're yet to learn how the

left will respond to this

initiative - in NSW does not

perhaps give Julia Gillard

much chance of surviving the

year politically. Look, there

has been mixed views in the

left on this. Some think

this is unwarranted and only

going to alienate those people they're trying to win

back from the Greens; others support the tougher position.

One figure I spoke to in

Labor today made another

interesting point, yes, while

they agree wholeheartedly

with attacking the Greens, is

it wise to have Paul Howes

and Sam Dastyari, NSW State

secretary, doing the

attacking? Is this once

again the back-room operators

calling the shot? That's right. The Greens have been

quite effective in NSW over

the weekend at using that

very line to push back

against these assaults.

They're saying well, these

are the same people that have

brought you the revolving

door of leadership, these are

the same people that have

hatched one after another

backroom scheme and, as it

were, subverted the elected

leadership of the Labor

Party. So that's been quite

effective. I would think

that the other thing that key

figures on the left, such as

John Faulkner and Anthony

Albanese, plus the machine

counterparts are going to be

careful about is not turning

the attack on the Greens into

an attack on the policies

that left-leaning Labor

voters care about. So

they're going to try to come

out with a nuanced position,

if you like, that will try to

fine-tune this a bit so it's

just not an excuse for Labor

voters who care about things

like environmental issues to

desert the party. What we

have to understand about

this, David, is it's very

much a NSW battle and a NSW

theme. There's long and

lingering anger in the NSW

Labor Party about the way

that the Greens abandoned them at the State election

last year. This clearly cost

Labor, which was always going

to suffer a catastrophic defeat, a number of seats they otherwise could have

won, such as Swansea in

Newcastle in the hunter

Valley or Monaro down on the

south coast. So there is

certainly an element of

payback here. There is also

an element of long-term

rebranding, rethinking, a

renewed assault on the centre

ground of politics. But, again, I'm interested in the

fact that they're prepared to begin all this now while there's still a Labor

Government in Canberra that's very much joined at the hip

to the Greens. Just finally,

then, where will all this end up the Labor conference over

the weekend. Will a decision

be taken on preferences

there? Isn't that really a

matter for party headquarters

at Sussex Street? It is a

matter for party headquarters

at Sussex Street, but if

conference directs the party

to preference the Greens

last, then that's what the

machine and the

administrative committee will

end up doing. You know, David, anybody that watched

the train wreck that was the

last four years of Labor

Government in NSW would tend

to suggest that it's not

Labor's relationship with the

Greens that was really the

problem but Labor's

relationship with the unions.

It wasn't the Greens that

forced the Labor Party to

execute one leader after

another and go to a historic

defeat last March. You have to wonder whether this is

really a bit of a side show

or even, to use a kind of

Freudian term, displacement

for what the real and tougher

battle that the Labor people

have to face is going to be

in coming years, which is how

do they redefine their relationship to the industrial wing of the

movement. I don't think

they'll sort that out this

weekend. Imre, thanks so

much for joining us. Thank

you, David. After the break,

we're going to take a look at

the flak Dolly Magazine has

been copping after awarding a

13-year-old girl its Cover

Girl model search winner

award. We'll talk to Mia

Freedman, former editor of

Dolly, who got rid of this

competition 10 years ago.

Why does she think it's such

a bad idea? Stay with us.

You're watching PM Agenda.

Now, is 13 years old too

young to be awarded a

modelling prize, a national

modelling prize, and should

magazines that target young

female readers, young girls,

be celebrating body image by

running such a competition?

Well, Dolly magazine has

found itself under a fair bit

of fire over the last couple

of days after awarding its

national model search prize

to a 13-year-old, Kirsty

Thatcher. Amongst those who

have criticised Dolly is a

former editor of the

magazine, Mia Freedman, who

also edited over the years

Cleo and cost Mo, she knows

what she's talking about when

it comes to the magazine

trade. Mia Freedman is now

the editor and publisher of

Mama Mia. I'm checking -

we're having a problem with

our studio link. Apologies

for that. We'll try to come back to Mia Freedman as soon

as we can. We have a slight

technical problem there. We'll take another quick

break. We'll sort that out

and be right back. Stay with us.

As we were just mentioning earlier, Dolly magazine has

been copping it today after

awarding a national modelling

prize to a 13-year-old girl.

Amongst those who have been

critical of this Model Search

competition is former editor

of the magazine Mia Freedman,

now editor and publisher of

Mama Mia. She joins me now.

Thanks for your time, Mia.

What's your concern here, is

it awarding this prize to a

13-year-old girl or the fact

that this competition is run

at all? You did shut it

down, of course, ten years

ago? I did. David, you know,

13-year-old winner for a

model contest for Dolly

magazine is absolutely appropriate. The reason I

shut it down all those years

ago was because I felt that

having a model contest and

all the publicity and

excitement it brings with it

really sends a message to not

just the girls in the

competition but all of

Dolly's readers, and I used

to be one myself, is that a

great thing to aspire to to

be a model and to be judged

completely on the way you

look and that's the most

important thing? I felt that

was a bad message to send to

young girls at a very

vulnerable time. The current

editor of Dolly, Tiffany

Dunk, said they deliberately

didn't ask the dress size and

weight of these people, they were asked about who they

were as people, you don't buy

it, you think it's about body

image? The way you entered

the contest to write an essay

about what you'd do as Prime

Minister, it was to send a

photo of yourself. They

conform to the same body

type, tall, very thin. All

the girls had long hair, all

the girls were white, except

for one, indigenous, a good

thing to see. Either you're

born that way or not. Being

a model is not really

something for girls to aspire

to. What we're trying to

teach our girls is that

what's inside is what counts,

not an industry that judges

you entirely on how you look,

what you weigh, how big your

teeth are - you know, how

your skin is. I think that's

really, really damaging industry for girls to be

involved in at any age. At

some point along that age

spectrum this happens at

other magazines. What age is it acceptable, reasonable,

for girls or women to be

subject to this body image

thing, or are you saying

right across the board there

should be less of this? I'd

like to see less model

contests. I'd like to see us

encouraging girls to use

their brains and use their

bodies in more active, constructive, thoughtful ways

and not to be holding up the

idea of being a model as

being the pinnacle. Mirnda

Kerr often gets brought up

because she was a winner of

Dolly and people say she won

it and wasn't she successful

as as a way to justify it.

The pinnacle of the modelling world looks like someone

walking up and down a catwalk

in their underwear. That's

not what I want for my daughter, I don't know about you. You're saying right

across the board modelling

per se as an industry is

problematic? Yes, I think

let's try to teach girls to

take care of themselves by

all means, but modelling is

not something - it's not a skill, it's not something you

can get better at, it's not

something open to everyone.

It really is a genetic

lottery. I think that the

other side of the equation,

of course, is that modelling

shoots and the modelling

world and fashion and magazine industry, they're

very adult places. The

people who work in them might

be very lovely, and indeed

they are, but they're not

babysitters or educators and they're not concerned with

the self-esteem of models,

nor should they have to be,

that's not their job. To put

young girls as young as 13 in

very adult world and adult

working environments when

they've just hit puberty,

that certainly sounds alarm

bells for me. Mia Freedman,

we have to wrap it up there.

Thank you for joining us this afternoon. Thank you for

having me. That's all for this edition of PM Agenda.

After the break, the very

latest Sky News. Live Captioning by Ai-Media