Thursday, March 1, 2012

Radio and Television Breakfast Round Up

AAP General News (Australia)
Radio and Television Breakfast Round Up


The federal Opposition says a new code of conduct which allows ministers to keep shares and
investments in companies lowers the hurdle for government frontbenchers and their staff.

Under the new rules tabled in federal parliament, ministers and parliamentary secretaries
will be allowed to use blind trusts or outside nominees as a way of keeping their investments
in companies associated with their portfolio areas.

Prime Minister JOHN HOWARD says the changes are only minor and don't represent softer

But Opposition public administration spokesman JOHN FAULKNER says the code is a weakening
of previous standards.


Four Australians have picked up nominations for the 71st annual Academy Awards.

CATE BLANCHETT is up against GWYNETH PALTROW and MERYL STREEP in the best actress category
for her role in Elizabeth.

GEOFFREY RUSH is in the running for best supporting actor for Shakespeare in Love while
RACHEL GRIFFITHS has received a nomination for best supporting actress for Hilary and Jackie.

Director PETER WEIR has earned a nomination for best director for the Truman Show.

But he has a formidable rival in STEVEN SPIELBERG who has stormed the list of Oscar
nominees for his epic World War II drama, Saving Private Ryan.

The nominations were announced early today in Beverly Hills, California.


Prime Minister JOHN HOWARD has warned against going beyond recognition of indigenous
occupation of Australia in any new preamble to the constitution.

Mr HOWARD says middle Australia will be turned off if people try to up the ante on the

The prime minister has told the ABC's 7.30 Report that any reasonable person would
recognise that the first Australians were the indigenous population.

But he says that once particular rights are mentioned, people will see it as pushing the
envelope too far.

Queenslanders are bracing themselves for the worst flooding this century as water levels
continue to rise at Gympie, north of Brisbane.

A police spokesman says the Mary river is still rising this morning after already reaching
21.05 metres -- which is equivalent to the highest level recorded in the river.

Meanwhile, the death toll from south-east Queensland's flooding has risen to three with the
discovery of a man's body at Albany Creek.

The body was recovered yesterday from the branches of a tree in the flood swollen South
Pine River.


Prime Minister JOHN HOWARD has refused to put a figure on the number of jobs to be created
by the GST.

Mr HOWARD is standing firm on his claim that a GST will create jobs -- despite the
government's admission that Treasury has done no modelling of the effects on employment.

But he's told ABC television it's impossible to put a figure on the number of jobs.

The prime minister has also ruled out any possibility of food being exempted from the
government's proposed GST.

He's told Channel Nine that taking food out of the GST reforms would blow a $6 billion hole
in the government's tax package.


The federal Opposition believes DICK SMITH'S chairmanship of the Civil Aviation Safety
Authority has proven counterproductive.

Opposition transport spokeswoman CHERYL KERNOT says she has no confidence in CASA despite
the government ruling out another inquiry into the air safety body.

And Ms KERNOT says Mr SMITH seems to be blaming everyone else whenever problems with CASA
are raised.

She says she has no confidence that CASA is working out its problems.

Federal Transport Minister JOHN ANDERSON has put CASA on notice to wipe out cronyism but
he's ruled out an inquiry.


The fragile relationship between the Coalition and Sydney Olympic Games organisers will be
tested today when Opposition Olympics spokesman RON PHILLIPS attends his first SOCOG meeting
since assuming his portfolio.

Mr PHILLIPS will meet International Olympic Committee member PHIL COLES, and Australian
Olympic Committee President JOHN COATES at the meeting just a day after the latest

Yesterday, Mr COLES was forced to apologise for endorsing the New South Wales Labor
government on ABC TV's Four Corners program.

Opposition Leader KERRY CHIKAROVSKI demanded the apology after Mr COLES said everyone
organising the Sydney Olympics would prefer BOB CARR's government was re-elected on March 27.


Thousands of Jordanians have lined up to offer condolences to King ABDULLAH as he takes
charge of a country that's known only his father's rule for nearly half a century.

A day after the burial of King HUSSEIN, who died at the age of 63 from cancer, long queues
have wound through the palace grounds to meet the new ruler.

King HUSSEIN was buried yesterday in a state funeral attended by a host of world leaders.

International comments reflect both praise for HUSSEIN'S policies, above all his 1994 peace
treaty with Israel, and hopes that ABDULLAH will also pursue peace and stability.


The US Senate is to open final deliberations today towards a verdict in President BILL
CLINTON'S impeachment trial.

Impassioned closing arguments by House prosecutors have ended, with observers predicting
little chance of rallying the two-thirds majority needed to convict CLINTON and remove him
from office.

The final vote in the trial is expected on Thursday or Friday.

The president faces perjury and obstruction of justice charges stemming from a year-long
probe into his efforts to hide an affair with former White House intern MONICA LEWINSKY.


Indonesia is preparing to release rebel leader XANANA GUSMAO into house arrest.

A prison official at Jakarta's Cipinang jail says GUSMAO will be moved from prison to a
house tomorrow.

The action is seen as a response to mounting international pressure to release GUSMAO from
prison to smooth efforts to end the dispute over East Timor's future.


The South Australian opposition says it will consider whether to put up a no-confidence motion
against Premier JOHN OLSEN over making a false statement to parliament.

The new health fund rebate has reportedly caused confusion among some health fund members
because cash payouts and tax allowances are not available, as they believed had been promised.

Liberal Party heavyweight and ABC board member MICHAEL KROGER has reportedly called for the
broadcaster to partially privatise it online service.

Sinn Fein says the historic visit of its leader GERRY ADAMS to Australia will go ahead as
scheduled later this month despite rising tensions in the Northern Irish peace process.

Former French Prime Minister LAURENT FABIUS has appeared in court on the opening day of the
trial of three ex-ministers linked to a scandal involving the use of AIDS-tainted blood in



Dutch Crown Prince WILLEM ALEXANDER has suspended his involvement with the International
Olympic Committee.

News agency reports from The Hague say the prince was facing domestic pressure to withdraw
from the organisation after it became mired in a bribery scandal.

He was elected to the IOC during last year's Winter Olympics and due to take up his post in


An English newspaper report says SHANE WARNE's wife asked him to quit cricket at the height
of the bookies' scandal.

The Mirror newspaper says SIMONE WARNE had told him he should get out of the game due to
the pressure he was under late last year.


AFL chief WAYNE JACKSON says the code's $25 million welfare package won't apply to past
players, although some former footballers will be eligible for support on compassionate

JACKSON says the AFL and the Players Association are on the verge of completing their
welfare package which will assist players to manage their lives after football.

The package includes retirement benefits, welfare programs, counselling and education.



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