Quote of the week

Although judicial proceedings will generally be bound by the requirements of natural justice to a greater degree than will hearings before administrative tribunals, judicial decision-makers, by virtue of their positions, have nonetheless been granted considerable deference by appellate courts inquiring into the apprehension of bias. This is because judges ‘are assumed to be [people] of conscience and intellectual discipline, capable of judging a particular controversy fairly on the basis of its own circumstances’: The presumption of impartiality carries considerable weight, for as Blackstone opined at p. 361 in Commentaries on the Laws of England III . . . ‘[t]he law will not suppose possibility of bias in a judge, who is already sworn to administer impartial justice, and whose authority greatly depends upon that presumption and idea’. Thus, reviewing courts have been hesitant to make a finding of bias or to perceive a reasonable apprehension of bias on the part of a judge, in the absence of convincing evidence to that effect.

L'Heureux-Dube and McLachlin JJ
Livesey v The New South Wales Bar Association [1983] HCA 17; (1983) 151 CLR 288
10 June 2011

Government has the truth to communicate … the people who are going to pass on our content much more effectively to the public are the people we will focus on, I can tell you this right now…  It will continue to work with mainstream media. Nothing is going to change, but you can expect – without a shadow of a doubt – that there will be more usage of media that covers areas which are generally not covered, [like] rural areas… Even if you write badly about government we will still do work with you, the criteria is not to write good about government. The criteria is to report on government work [and] once you’ve reported on government work, you can do what you like to criticise it. – Jimmy Manyi, announcing a new media strategy based on threats instead of persuasion

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