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SA Do as I say, not as I do

Discussion in 'Politics, Laws, Government & Insurance' started by pringa8, Apr 20, 2009.

  1. SOUTH Australia's lead-footed road safety minister Tom Koutsantonis has been forced to quit the porfolio over revelations that he had run up more than 30 traffic breaches, including mutliple tickets for speeding and ignoring red lights.

    After standing firm for a day, Mr Koutsantonis admitted he was quitting the road safety role. "My past transgressions mean I can't go out and do my job properly,'' he said.

    Mr Koutsantonis was promoted to Cabinet only a month ago and the setback is a big blow to his amibitions to advance into a leadership role in state Labor. An influential figure in the Right faction of the party, he will remain in Cabinet, retaining portfolios of prisons, gambling, youth, volunteers and assisting on multicultural affairs.

    It is not clear whether the road safety position will be taken over by a new minister promoted from the backbench or redistributed among the present lineup. The latter option is considered more likely.

    Mr Koutsantonis, 37, said his resignation from the road safety portfolio was his own decision, taken because he no longer felt he could be effective as a safety advocate.

    "I have listened to the views of South Australian and can see that it's not tenable for me to continue in this role, '' he said today.

    Gotta love some government hyprocicy, while people are getting done for 5 over this bloke is speeding and punching red lights (which is WAY worse than speeding). At least it's caught up with him.

  2. Just to be the devils advocate, mostly because it *really* pisses of the narrow minded....

    Lets be fair. He took the penalty each time, paid his due to society as outlined in legislation and enforced by the court, even lost his licence for periods...so whats the big deal? Why should we try and put *more* punishment on him. Why the fuss in the court of public opinion. Why can't he hold a responsible role if he responsibly has admitted fault for each offence? etc.

    Edit : I think this just serves to REINFORCE the governments to make every person who gets caught out doing 3km of the limit every now and again be viewed as a hardcore criminal who should be shown no leniency. Mandatory fines are just one example. It's almost darkly brilliant.
  3. He had to go, it's as hypocritical as a rapíst being appointed in a "Women's refuge".

    The Premier elevated him to his ministerial role after knowing his history. Bloody stupid decision in the first place, so he was probably told to resign to avoid further damage to the state Labor party.

    edit: I don't know why "rapíst" is filtered
  4. A perfect example. The prick making the rules knows first hand how unreasonable the rules are.
  5. To be fair, the guy's record, whilst a long way from good, is not, based on my various accquaintances, uncommon. 30 tickets in 15 years is only two a year. The way some people I know talk, they seem to get multanova'd every week.

    Besides, as noted above, he neither expected nor received any special treatment.

    Picking him for the transport post was politically stupid or careless, but to pillory the bloke himself for his record is, for some at least, skating dangerously close to hypocrisy.
  6. #6 edgelett, Apr 20, 2009
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 27, 2014
    actually, he only JUST paid all his fines TODAY after the media made a big deal of it.
    $948 worth which occured in 2007 and 2008

    he also admitted for taking demerit points for family members

    Loz - the reason this is pretty big news here, is cause only ONE WEEK AGO he was in the adelaide paper talking about how he hates hoons, and movies like 'fast & the furious' cause people to drive like maniacs.
    he was only made road safety minister 1 month ago too!

    funny enough, he's still the minister for gambling so he's still my boss.

    waiting with baited breath to see who the premier gives the road safety portfolio to now.
    good think i follow his twitter to keep up with ministerial changes!

    and look, announced via mike rann's twitter:

    Michael O'Brien to be sworn is as new Road Safety Minister this afternoon in addition to his existing portfolios.
  7. What dirt is there on him?
  8. the new guy?
    i have no idea mate, i have to say i've never heard of him
    don't think i'll have much to do with him unfortunately though since tom is keeping gambling.
  9. ok Tash. You will hear it before we will
  10. To be a devil along with Liquidity here, I've got a wee point / question.

    Did he rack up all those charges while he was in office?

    See, what I'm thinking is, could he be in this position because he has (or has claimed) he's learned from his mistakes, or did he make these offenses while in the ministerial position?

    I think comparing this to a ****** working in a womens refuge is going a bit far. We all make mistakes.

    I was on heavy drugs from the ages of about 13 to 16 (still have the tract marks), racking up a couple of possession and DUI / Driving Underage charges. As well as assault (unrelated). I've been clean for four years, and haven't been in trouble for about five.

    As some of you will know, I work in a school now, and the school is well aware of my past (I was brutally honest in the job interview). Should I not work in a school because I have a previous history with drugs? Does this mean that I'm a hypocrite for telling students they shouldn't do drugs? Would I not make a good role model due to my past actions? I don't believe so, as I've learned from my mistakes, and I can tell the students that from personal experience, it's not a good idea.

    So, did the minister make these mistakes while he had he job? If not, how long ago, and has he perhaps learned his lesson and made good? Hence, he knows the consequences etc. and can speak from experience?

    Edit: Huh. R/\Pist is filtered =\
  11. #11 cejay, Apr 20, 2009
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 27, 2014
    You follow pollies on Twitter? :shock: :shock: :shock: :shock: :shock:

    But from Tash's post, it looks like he's only just paid up and was sanctimenous until recently.

    But I get your point. Mind you, if our media wasn't so conservative in their outlook and reporting, perhaps these pollies wouldn't see the need to pretend that somehow they were the only kid in college who didn't do sex/drugs/parties. I'd much prefer a pollie who openly admitted their past than one who feels that they somehow have to lie to maintain an air of perfection.
  12. Oops, missed that one.

    I must admit, I have paid for my sins. Probation, compulsory counseling, being on the brink of schizophrenia, and I will now be on antidepressants for the rest of my life (I've been told that by the doctors/shrinks etc.). Criminal history, constant urges to take drugs again (they never fully go away, just temporarily), and much more.

    I think that if he has paid for what he's done, and it wasn't done while in the position in which we trust him, then he should be given the benefit of the doubt.

    But, taking into account him not paying the fines until recently, if he's purposely not paid them, then yes, he should go, if he has made a genuine mistake, eg. forgotten to pay them / missed the letter and threw it out with junk, and was not given reminders, then he should, once again, be given the benefit of the doubt.

    And, while taking the fall for family / friends may be illegal / immoral (eg, lying) it is also somewhat honourable in a way, as it shows he would take a punch for someone he loves, so to speak.
  13. I'm sorry, but I will have to disagree here.

    What I do it near public. I work at a school, serving 500+ students and 80+ staff, and the students parents are also able to know everything I do.

    I work to serve people who (may) look up to me and see me as a role model. That's what a minister does, is it not?

    Would an ex drug addict be refused a job as a drugs counselor?

    As far as I'm concerned, if you can prove you've changed, then that should be enough.
  14. Even if you havent, if your accepting the socially "accepted" penalties then whats the problem?

  15. sounds lame, but I have to for work
  16. most of his offences occured in 2007 and 2008, before he was appointed minister.
    But, that's also only in the last 12-24 months.
    the issue is that 1) the premier KNEW of all his offences & still appointed him minister and 2) he hadn't paid any of his fines until yesterday, 2 hours after adelaidenow.com.au published them all on their website.

    it sends a message of 'road safety minister only stopped breaking the law when he became a minister, but doesn't respect the law cause he didn't pay his fines, and not only that he filled out stat decs to take the blame on behalf of family members which is also an offence'

    i look forward to seeing what Michael O'Brien can do in the role
  17. What I find disturbing is the fact that this private information about his driving record has been leaked out to the media and no-one thinks this is a bad thing.

    Regardless of whether he's good, bad or indifferent - the fact that private records have been leaked from a department is cause for concern.
  18. I guess it's part of living in the public eye, you have no privacy. And why would it be leaked? It's probably pretty simple really, he either pissed off the wrong person, or money.

    It's pretty easy nowadays for people to "blow the wistle (sp?)", what with things like wikileaks. Just look at what happened with the "Top Secret" internet filtering black list.

    Not much can remain a secret forever :)
  19. I dont think it is a private record. I'm pretty sure you can get someones offence history with a freedom of information request.
  20. I thought you needed a good reason for wanting something via FOI? And I've been told that if they want to, people can be stretched out for years waiting for documents etc. via FOI.