Cutler Advised Kerr To Warn Whitlam

A new allegation has surfaced that the then Governor-General, Sir John Kerr, discussed his intention to dismiss the Whitlam Government with the then Governor of New South Wales, Sir Roden Cutler.

Sir Roden CutlerSir Roden’s nephew, David Tyrer, in a letter to Whitlam last November, claims that Kerr discussed his intentions with Cutler. Tyrer asserts that Cutler cautioned Kerr to advise Whitlam of his intentions.

The allegation is contained in an article by Alan Ramsey in today’s Sydney Morning Herald. Headed “Why that old Whitlam fire just won’t die”, Ramsey discusses the forthcoming release of the 1975 Cabinet Papers. A briefing for journalists was held by the National Archives last week but under the 30-year rule the cabinet papers are embargoed until midnight on January 1, 2006. [Read more…]

That Politicians Have Lost Their Sense Of Humour

This is the text of Gough Whitlam’s contribution to a debate at the Sydney Town Hall.

The Order in the House debate was on the topic: “That politicians have lost their sense of humour.”

Ma’am, Prime Minister, Men and Women of Australasia –

I unsuccessfully stood for the New South Wales Parliament in 1950. A year later a Labor MLA named Howard was caught in bed with another man’s wife. A private inquiry agent gave evidence that Howard was wearing only his sox. When Howard next spoke in the House there were constant interjections: “Why were you wearing sox for sex?” At last he replied “So I wouldn’t catch a social disease”. Immediately there were cries “What social disease did she have?” He replied “Tinea”. I couldn’t again stand for a Parliament where the humour was so vulgar. I should add that Howard’s conduct made him very popular in the cattle country he represented. He survived till 1968. His surname was Fowles. The judge who heard the case said he had barnyard morals. [Read more…]

Alan Ramsey: Hawke The Squawk

In June 1975, Whitlam conducted a reshuffle of his ministry.

Bill Hayden became Treasurer.

Dr. Jim Cairns was demoted to Environment minister, becoming the only Treasurer never to present a Budget.

The Loans Affair was about to erupt again.

Whitlam and Barnard would soon precipitate the disastrous Bass by-election.

And Alan Ramsey reported in Melbourne’s Sunday Press that Bob Hawke’s position as ALP President might be in jeopardy…

Sunday Press
Sunday Press
Sunday Press

Of course, the important news of the day was still on Page 1:

Sunday Press
Sunday Press