Wednesday, May 15, 2013
The pond arranges to salute Australia's head of state, after an unhappy detour through Estonia and Woy Woy ...
(Above: a little Magritte for this post-budget day).
Every day is budget day at the pond, and so there'll be no endless banging on about the budget on these pages.
Besides, as a student of André Breton, the pond finds no novelty in the image of a swan as a cooked goose. Or any of the other swan jokes doing the rounds ...
Now it's true that the pond had been primed by reading Ross Gittins' Budget becomes Canberra's con job (forced video at end of link):
Why does everyone in Canberra have an interest in misleading us about the budget's macro-economic significance? Because, as the ACT's principal export to the rest of Australia, the budget is how they make their living.
Indeed. On a day when the pond is desperate for a fresh outburst of lizard Oz Caterism about dangerous elites, what do we find?
A veritable phalanx of chattering elites - you can pick them by the way they're paid to chatter endlessly - are out and about, chattering endlessly about the budget and business confidence and special interests and weighing this and poking that, on and on, a form of neurosis only matched by the endless scribbling about weekly polls.
Even Janet "Dame Slap" Albrechtsen reaches desperation point in her desire to produce chatter points, as you can tell by her header, Do austerity the Estonian way (behind the paywall so you might never discover your way to the Estonian way).
Now if only she'd asked the pond for an angle. We could have suggested Do austerity the Etruscan way, or perhaps Do austerity the Moche way.
Instead she goes on a prolonged rant about Estonia, and the Baltic tigers, presumably on the basis that no one in Australia has thought two figs about Estonia or the Baltic tigers,
Dame Slap cites Forbes as one of her sources, which is just as well, because it turns out that Estonia looks like it might be facing hard times, and even worse, its future health is deeply entwined with the fate of Europe as it attempts to recover from the 20% contraction its economy experienced in the 2008 crisis (Estonia's Growth to Slow Amid Prolonged European Slump, IMF Says).
Even worse, it's ICT which has been producing the growth - the geeks shall inherit the earth - but sadly things have slowed, withm growth dropping from an estimated 3.6% to an actual 1% (Bloomberg; Estonia's Q1 growth falls short of estimates). Not so much a tiger, as a half-domesticated wild cat perhaps ...
Oh and there's been a match-fixing crisis. In soccer. At which point the pond nodded off.
Hang on, suddenly the pond is writing about the Estonian situation, along with Dame Slap?
Yep, and that's how desperate it gets for an angle, any angle, amongst the chattering elites come budget day.
Where's Nick Cater when he's needed?
Well it turns out Nick Cater went to Woy Woy (home of Spike Milligan's mum), as you can read in a wonderfully bitchy piece in Crikey, in Cater's ideological trip to Woy Woy, not a Mercedes in sight (may be paywall affected).
Apart from references to Cater being a faithful, spiteful lickspittle of Rupert Murdoch in the colonies, blessed with a special brand of feline, preening nastiness (mmmroaw), it seems what was most noticeable in this trip away from the cafe latte belt was a remarkable absence of genuine actual locals, as opposed to a swarm of blow-ins and blow-flies and chattering elitist drop kicks. Like Miranda the Devine:
When Miranda Devine, trailing her latest Twitter martyrdom behind her like a soiled bridal train, made a late entry Cater evinced schoolboy excitement, declaring “the real star” had arrived and ushering her proudly to her table. So it was clearly a friendly, if not hand-picked, crowd.
No doubt as soon as it was over, the crowd of latte-haters couldn't wait to shake the dust of Woy Woy from their shoes. There's talking the talk, but do the Woy Woy walk?
But not even the rich stench of this kind of hypocrisy did it for the pond.
What the pond needed was a decent dose of eccentricity.
But where to turn? The chattering elites are all, lemming-like, rushing over the cliff of the budget follies.
Thank the long absent lord, Professor David Flint, AM, still carries on professing the faith, and this very day he presents important information of service to all, as you can read in Don't you worry about the details - new republican campaign (Part 5).
Forget the budget, there's hairs to be split, and the pond is on hand to help split them.
The Prof - sssh, don't ask where he profs - is terrified that big Mal has re-launched the republican movement, and is on the opposition front bench, and might soon enough be on the government front bench, spreading his malicious lies to the Average Australian, who it turns out isn't Average, because we are too well endowed with common sense, good judgment and decency to fall for this propaganda.
Now the good Prof has a simple test for the Average Australian, to help determine who is the head of state.
No, you silly, it isn't the Queen, she's got absolutely nothing to do with Australia.
What's that you say? Read the constitution?
1. The legislative power of the Commonwealth shall be vested in a Federal Parliament, which shall consist of the Queen, a Senate, and a House of Representatives, and which is herein-after called "The Parliament," or "The Parliament of the Commonwealth. "
2. A Governor-General appointed by the Queen shall be Her Majesty's representative in the Commonwealth, and shall have and may exercise in the Commonwealth during the Queen's pleasure, but subject to this Constitution, such powers and functions of the Queen as Her Majesty may be pleased to assign to him.
3. There shall be payable to the Queen out of the Consolidated Revenue fund of the Commonwealth, for the salary of the Governor-General, an annual sum which, until the Parliament otherwise provides, shall be ten thousand pounds. The salary of the Governor-General shall not be altered during his continuance in office. (the rest of it here).
Why you silly cooked goose, that's mere verbiage, droll dross and nonsense. It's as clear as the mud on your Estonian face that the Queen has absolutely nothing to do with Australia - that's why we love her so - and the GG is all the go as head of state, and here's the proof of the pudding:
There is an easy way to work out who is a head of state. He or she is entitled to a twenty one gun salute when visiting another country. And this is precisely what the Governor-General receives when she goes on a state visit.
Indeed. And if for some godforsaken reason she happens to turn up in godforsaken Canada, she'll cop a 21 gun salute, and so will Her Majesty and so will members of the Royal Family, and quite possibly a Royal Estonian cat will also cop a flurry, at least if she's well connected enough. (Honours and salutes - Monarchy in Canada).
Dear sweet absent lord, they even let off a 21 gun salute for the Pope when he stepped ashore in Australia.
Now you might make the bleeding obvious point that the GG cops a salute as the deputy for the Royal family - we should even be paying the Queen to pay for the GG if we follow the constitution - and that the 21 gun salute proves absolutely nothing, except perhaps that the GG is the deputy of the real head of the Australian state, the Queen, but you can't argue with the Prof - sssh, don't ask where he profs - and in any case, the pond noted an entirely different take home message ...
Forget Estonia, the budget and Nick Cater ... thanks to the Prof.
It's enough that on budget day, someone took the opportunity to talk of other things, and to sound remarkably silly in the process.
All's well on the pond. Someone bung on a 21 gun salute ...
(Below: oh look, the brave lads are bunging on a 21 gun salute for the Queen, Australia's head of state, on the occasion of her birthday. How gracious, how kind, as you can read here. Funny, remind the pond that we must organise a public holiday for the GG to celebrate her birthday).
Posted by dorothy parker at 5/15/2013 08:48:00 AM