Is this a sign of sheer bloody arrogance, rampant hubris, or mere desperation? Interestingly, Murdoch Inc. supplies the dirt:
News Ltd newspapers reported on Sunday business leaders paid more than $8,000 a head to attend the function at Kirribilli House hosted by the prime minister.Howard says the cost was only $7,500, "plus GST where applicable". And Howard says he got the OK for the event from ... err,... the Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet. Anyway, it wasn't a fundraiser, says Howard. There was a Liberal federal council meeting in Sydney, and this was just, err... part of the "associated briefings and events".
I guess that to be a fundraiser, it would technically need to have raised funds for the Liberals. And at $7,500 + GST* that seems highly likely. OTOH, how much did the PM's own department (or whoever runs Kirribilli House) charge his own party for the use of the national estate real estate? How much did the staff union (hehe) charge for labour? I mean, is it possible that the taxpayers might have made a profit out of this affair?
Pig's ass, I'm thinking.