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'World's biggest Luddite' in Telstra plasma TV row

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Could it be that the man dubbed the "world's biggest Luddite" is actually tuned in and switched on to technology?

Australian Communications Minister Richard Alston has admitted accepting a loan of a swish plasma wide-screen digital TV worth an estimated AU$10,000 (£3,600) from monster telco Telstra.

Senator Alston claims the plasma screen has given him an "informed knowledge" about plasma wide-screen digital TVs. And as a man in the industry, he can say with all confidence why people get so excited about wide-screen TVs.

Oh, and it means he can watch sport. And plenty of it by the sounds of it.

The admission has caused anger Down Under with one opposition politician claiming that he is "treating Telstra like his own private rental service, with the taxpayer footing the bill", according to an AAP report.

In a bid to draw a line under the row Senator Alston has said he will return the TV, but hasn't said when. Perhaps after the cricket World Cup has finished? Hmmm? ®

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