A ring-of-truth letter on Australia's Prime Minister:
"Everyone keeps on writing that PM Julia Gillard needs to put her convictions on the line and stand up for what she really believes in. Everyone keeps on writing that she is being manipulated by the powerbrokers, the factions and the kitchen cabinets and of course by the internal pollsters.
"What an insult to Julia Gillard! I know enough of Gillard to know she is her own person. She is part of the machinery, one of the powerbrokers and others in the ALP have come to trust her because of her views. I believe that what you see is what you get. Maybe what Julia has put out is what she is about. I don't believe she wants asylum seekers here. I believe that she believes in mandatory detention. I believe that the 'people smuggling business model' is one of her ideas. I believe that she doesn't believe age and disability pensioners should get a better deal. I believe that she is as harsh on our poorest as she claims to be.
"In 1983, Gillard was the president of the Australian Union of Students. Her ugly will for power then and her obstinate views contributed to the redundancy of the union, which went out of business altogether til 1987. What's happening now to the ALP and the Australian political landscape has not surprised me, and long ago I predicted such a parallel." (Gerry Georgatos, Bridgetown, WA, Green Left Weekly, 14/9/11)