Thursday, December 20, 2012
Let the apocalypse begin, and if it befalls Tony Abbott, so much the better ...
What an astonishing display of insouciance, not to mention hubris and arrogance on the part of Tony Abbott, when he advised - would announced or pronounce be better? - that he was doing too much important work for Australia to actually read the Federal Court judgement in the matter of Ashby v CofA and Slipper.
As if the behaviour and probity of his colleagues wasn't an essential part of important work for Australia, and as if an actual acquaintance with the details - before once more swearing blind loyalty to Mal Brough - wasn't important for a man with such grand visions.
This actually doesn't devolve into a Labor v coalition dispute, but goes directly to the character of Abbott, and to the way that the gormless media have given him a free ride and a free kick at every opportunity.
This morning there has been some comment, most notably Lenore Taylor's Silly, but Tony stands by his man, but the best she can do is call Abbott silly ...
It's actually reprehensible and insulting behaviour, as anybody will know who's sat through a meeting with some turkey, only to be told at a climactic moment in said meeting that the turkey hasn't bothered to actually read the key document that's the subject of the meeting.
Thereby wasting everybody's time as said turkey asks for a quick debrief, entirely misses the point, and ruins the business.
Taylor eventually lathers herself up enough to suggest that Brough still has questions to answer and that Abbott's "busy doing important things" answer is "insufficient", whether the Coalition leader has read the whole judgment or not.
But it's like spanked Abbott with a feather, when really he needs a decent going over with a decent Opus Dei cord-like whip:
How hard would it have been for Abbott to have read the document, and said something like "yes, I've read the judgement, and while it raises a few matters, I have complete faith in my colleague, and it reflects my substantial unawareness of anything to do with anything about it."
And once again treatment of Abbott's blooper reverts to the question of media coverage, and the Murdoch rags, most notably The Australian, whipping themselves into a frenzy over union matters now almost two decades old, while right here, right now, Brough can get away with lies and dissembling, and Abbott can stand alongside him without a good tar and feathering.
Even more exasperating in all this is that Brough need not have involved himself with Ashby at all - he could have simply stood back, and likely won Slipper's seat in a canter.
And there's every probability that Abbott will win the next election, perhaps not by a landslide, but certainly by a comfortable majority. He needn't stand by Brough, because the coalition could probably stand a drover's dog against Slipper, and the dog would win.
And that's where the real arrogance and hubris comes in and why it gives the pond a chance to sound like the preacher in Ecclesiastes, "vanity, all is vanity."
Fewer and fewer people can remember or have experience of the dying days of the Whitlam government. There wasn't much to be said for it. Rex Connor was out of control, and in his madness turned to Tirath Khemlani, a con man with no class. Jim Cairns misled parliament in relation to a letter, and resigned, though it also emerged later to his undying shame that he'd sued a paper for suggesting he was fucking Junie Morosi, and won a settlement, so that he could enjoy the cash in the paw ... while fucking Junie Morosi.
There was a kind of madness and hysteria in the air - there were any number of other issues facing the government, what with Bjelke-Petersen and Pat Field and such like - and that's when Malcolm Fraser struck by withholding supply, the most contemptible political trick deployed by any Australian politician in the twentieth century.
Whitlam was caught between a dodgy drunk and a devious snake. Did he deserve the sack, the dismissal? Probably not, and maybe he could have traded his way out of the mess he was in, or maybe not.
But let's not worry about alternative history. He got the sack, and Fraser got legitimacy by winning the subsequent election.
But it wasn't a real and honest legitimacy, because many people loathed Fraser for what he'd done and the way he'd acquired power, and as they began to experience the leadership of the head prefect it got even worse.
The country spent years marking time, and when you review Fraser's record, there's not too many things you'd care to put into the positive basket. It took some time coming, but when it did, Fraser's punishment at the hands of Hawke (helped along by that drover's dog) was a beauty.
And now what do we see, since karma is a wonderful and mystical thing?
Why there's a fondness for Whitlam which transcends party lines, and amazingly Fraser has gone crazed leftie and irritant mosquito to his party in a way that not even the most fervent Whitlamite could manage. Is it partly a matter of guilt, or chiefly a matter of guilt, and a sense of the treachery, arrogance and greed for power which will always taint his legacy? (Not to mention the way his legacy of founding SBS has gone off the rails, with only NITV to hand to save the day).
Who knows, but some sentiments expressed in Geoff Kitney's It's all hung up in the Parliament (behind the paywall) reminded the pond of the relevance of the Whitlam years to the current circumstances of Abbott, his persistent negativity, and his insatiable greed for power and the "preciousss", as if he'd been born to rule, and it was only an illegitimate minority government that had prevented his ascendancy into the gods:
Abbott's promise to hold the government "ferociously to account" by uncompromising opposition at every level had made this Parliament especially unattractive to the public.
Some on the Coalition side who share Turnbull's disquiet about the longer-term damage of no-holds-barred parliamentary tactics fret that an Abbott government could pay a price for this. They warn Abbott has not learned the lesson of the Fraser government in the mid-1970s when, after winning power using the most brutal means, it came to office with seriously damaged public goodwill which weakened its effectiveness.
Indeed. But it wasn't just the lack of public good will that damaged Fraser and his government, it was their own internal disarray.
So it's likely to be with Abbott.
Abbott is loathed by many punters, and at best you could say a substantial majority of the Australian population are entirely indifferent and immune to his charms.
His rugger bugger boofhead 'in your face' antics and sanctimonious hypocrisy haven't served him well, at least when it comes to popularity ratings in opinion polls.
Well might big Mal fret, especially if he gets to play the Andrew Peacock role. Perhaps he should be packing his bags for some time in Washington.
The stench of Abbott hypocrisy comes with the notion of holding the government "ferociously to account" but when it comes to the matter of Mal Brough, going "ferociously to water", pleading he couldn't be fucked reading an important court judgement.
Which raises even bigger questions.
Climate science? Oh I couldn't be buggered reading that important document because I'm doing important work for Australia ...
The NBN, and the unimpeachable need for Australia to keep pace with China's rapid installation of FTTH?
Oh I left that important document next to the toilet, and I'll get around to it in the future, because meantime I'm doing important work for Australia ...
Naturally The Australian has given Abbott yet another free pass by hiding the story down the page, and instead highlighting yet another tedious "Exclusive" from Dennis "the tie and suit" Shanahan explaining how "Minority rule has 'failed to deliver" according to one in two voters, and never mind that one in two voters intends to vote for Tony Abbott.
Look, see, the pond doesn't make things up:
Which confirms the pond's own polling, that one in two readers of The Australian are terminally dumb.
Yes, it's such a comprehensively fatuous beat-up that the pond can only plead Xmas fatigue, and too much bubbly to attend to its rampant stupidity.
But that's okay. The pond believes that there's every likelihood that Mal Brough will win his seat and that Tony Abbott will win power, but the good news is that they'll do it with a taint.
And when they're in power, the intrigue and the intricacies of the Slipper affair won't go away, they'll come around to haunt the government, and anything that the delusionary Brough - who still thinks he was god's gift to indigenous people - attempts as a Minister.
The pond likes to imagine Abbott in his dotage, traumatised by guilt and bad conscience, going mad, and turning into an agrarian socialist of the peculiar B.A. Santamaria kind.
In the meantime, the pond hopes to be around to track his decline and fall, which is likely to be spectacular.
In the old days in the Fraser years, even with the oil shock and unemployment high and sundry other policy failures, the head prefect managed to wrangle his colleagues and stare down challengers like Andrew Peacock. In the end it left the old bull fatally gored, but it took time.
These days, things move more quickly - why you can send a defamatory tweet in a nanosecond around the world - and there are any number in the Liberal ranks who, if they smell blood, will step in for the kill, and a fine old time will be had by all, and there'll be bugger all the cheerleaders in the Murdoch rags can do about it.
The pond is torn between quoting Macbeth:
If it were done when 'tis done, then 'twere well
It were done quickly: if the assassination
Could trammel up the consequence, and catch
With her surcease success; that but this blow
Might be the be-all and the end-all here,
But here, upon this bank and shoal of time,
We'd jump the life to come. But in these cases
We still have judgement here; that we but teach
Bloody instructions, which, being taught, return,
To plague the inventor: this even-handed justice
Commends the ingredients of our poisoned chalice
To our own lips.
Yes, when he's in the sear, the yellow leaf of life, gung ho Abbott will have time to reflect on his unwillingness to take a stand or read a court document:
Will all great Neptune's ocean wash this blood
Clean from my hands? No, this my hand will rather
The multitudinous seas incardine,
Making the green one red.
Or perhaps we should revert to Julius Caesar:
Let me have men about me that are fat,
Like jolly Joe Hockey,
Sleek-headed men, and such as sleep o'nights;
Yond big Mal has a lean and hungry look;
He thinks too much: such men are dangerous.
But in the end we'll settle for Ecclesiastes:
Vanity of vanities, saith the Preacher, vanity of vanities; all is vanity.
What profit hath a man with a Brough as a companion when he hasn't the time to read a document under the sun?
One generation of leaders passeth away, and lo after the Abbott, another generation cometh, and the earth doesn't abideth forever thanks to climate change ...
All things are full of labor; but people cannot utter it speedily, because the NBN was privatised and reduced to FTTN
The eye is not satisfied with seeing, not at that bit rate, nor the ear filled with hearing, at least at 320 for an mp3
The thing that hath been, it is that which shall be; and that which is done is that challenge to the Abbott which shall be done; and there is no new challenge or fall of a leader under the sun ...
Because there is no remembrance of former Fraser things; neither shall there be any remembrance of Abbott things that are to come with those that shall come after ...
By golly, and it's the 21st December tomorrow, when the sun will ariseth, and possibly goeth down, and perhaps not. Bring it on, the pond is in the mood for an apocalypse, and the day that the apocalypse has its way with the sanctimonious humbuggery and relentless negativity of Tony Abbott and his media acolytes.
In the meantime, at least Julia Gillard is a YouTube celebrity and her latest effort has gone right off the chart, at 2.752m hits as we count. And yay, just as she won't have to do Q&A again, no one will ever have to watch it!
But what about sensa huma Abbott? Sorry he's too busy doing important work for Australia, like the pompous negative ass he is.
Posted by dorothy parker at 12/20/2012 08:07:00 AM