Reviewed By
Karen Chisholm

The problem with bent pollies is that it's all too easy to forget the excesses, the nasties, the downright corrupt.  BENT POLLIES is a book that in John Kerr's inimitable style reminds us, all too clearly, to keep an eye on all levels of society.

This book covers some of the stories that seemed to have dropped a bit from public conscience - Milton Orkopoulos from NSW was a sexual predator.  Full stop, nothing more to be said really, although Kerr gives us the background of how he managed to get himself into the position he did.  Rex Jackson was a Prison Minister, who ended up in Prison corruption - gambling got him in the end.  Sir John Bjelke-Peterson was tried, but never convicted, and the story of what happened on his jury is frankly gobsmacking.  From there we go to Crime Bosses, and whilst many of these "characters" have been covered in other books, again, it's Kerr's ironic, wry tone that makes this compelling reading.  The final part of the book is then about Drug Runners.

This book (and the smaller individual ones that make it up) are designed as "Commuter Crime" - small, pointed, interesting and revealing little snippets to read when you have a few moments.  Probably just as well I can't catch public transport. I'd be guaranteed to miss my stop.

Bent Pollies, and the most recent book A Pack of Bloody Animals are available for purchase from Kerr Publishing:  ( is external))

(Disclaimer:  I work on the Kerr Publishing website - which gives me an opportunity to hear about these books as they arrive...  the opinions I voice are my own and Mr Kerr isn't even aware if / when I am likely to review one of his books).

Year of Publication

Power enables people. The powerful can do things, but sometimes what they do breaks the law. Milton Orkopoulos had sex with teenage boys, Rex Jackson sold Get-Out-of- Jail-Free cards, and Joh Bjelke-Petersen told a whopper on oath. These men were all lawmakers, parliamentarians, and law breakers. One became The Hillbilly Dictator, as close as Australia has come to a one-party police state.

Review BENT POLLIES - John Kerr
Karen Chisholm
Friday, December 16, 2011
Blog Currently Reading - Bent Pollies, John Kerr
Karen Chisholm
Wednesday, September 28, 2011

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