Craig Thomson was exonerated by the NSW Police. Or was he? The police investigation simply found that there was no evidence to suggest the credit card in question was used illegally. Craig Thomson had earlier suggested it wasn’t him who used the card to pay for prostitutes, implying the card was used by someone else. This was where the illegality could have resided – it could have been a credit card fraud offence. The fact that there was no suggestion that the card was fraudulently used simply confirmed Craig Thomson did use the card to pay for prostitutes, contrary to his denial. So in a funny way, the “exoneration” actually implicated Craig Thomson – not for any criminal conduct for in relation to using union money for an improper purpose.
Craig Thomson said he would provide a full statement to the parliament, but did not say when.
HSU members should no doubt be up in arms that union officials can be allowed to use their hard earned money for personal benefits and for despicable peccadilloes no less. The likes of Thomson continue to tar the image of unions and its officials.
The more recent story of Michael Williamson being accorded favours by Gilleland and his printing business surely does the image of unions and its officers absolutely no favours. The “Health Standard” must be one of the most glossy union newsletters around and “Communigraphix” probably need to maintain the gloss to continue operating out of the northern beaches of Sydney. The continuing silence of these union mob can be telling. I often dislike the saying “there is no smoke without fire”, as it can be easy to create smoke in order to create the impression of a fire, but in this case, I have a feeling most would that saying its usual meaning and unless Thomson and Williamson both responded vigorously, they will do themselves, and the Labor Party absolutely no good whatsoever.
I was just listening to Neil Mitchell on 3AW and Kathy Jackson, the Health Services Union Secretary, was responding to his questions in a refreshingly straight and honest manner. What a change – a breath of fresh air. She was also on ABC’s “Lateline” last night and here’s the transcript.
Kathy Jackson said she and the union formed a view that there was misuse and misappropriation of funds, and she and the union formed a view as to who the perpetrator was. She said however that as the matter was being investigated, she would not name the person. Neil Mitchell concluded the interview by telling his listeners that the person was obviously Craig Thomson.
Kathy Jackson also urged (in the Lateline interview) Fairwork Australia or the police to provide feedback quickly. It is disgraceful for Fairwork Australia – stacked by Labor Party appointees, according to Michael Smith of 2UE in the Paul Murray Live program on Sky News last night – to have taken ages (a couple of years now) to investigate this allegation when a first year police officer would have concluded it in weeks, if not days.
My mistrust and dislike for union people has been abated by the likes of Kathy Jackson. Those workers of menial jobs in hospitals and related services appear to have someone genuinely concerned with protecting their interests.
The Health Services Union and the NSW Police, have at long last, decided to act and take the next step to formally investigate Craig Thomson for possible criminal breaches. Madame Prime Minister is unlikely to sleep well now. Who knows, Craig Thomson may well be the one to bring an end to the carbon tax stupidity. Talk about serendipity and Australia being the lucky country.
Taking after a recent tendency amongst some of my dearest beloved to romanise the Hokkien dialect – “Gong Gong Chia Ti Kong”. Translated loosely, it means (I think) that the heavens show mercy on the simple-minded, or the perhaps literally, “fools are fed by the heavens”.
Craig Thomson could well turn out to be the saviour of Australia.