Is there any more irritating, delusional or currently wannabe omnipresent politician than former Chairman Rudd?
This morning he's been given the top digital slot at Fairfax (as above), and he's been all over the televisual experience, and he's topped the headlines like a cockroach at RN.
He's marked down a little at The Guardian down under:
After all, when you offer a photo of Bob Carr but not one of the Ruddster, as he helps the troops by reminding them of raising the flag at Rorke's drift but it's old chum Carr with the flag ... Zulus to the left of them, Zulus to the right.
But in the world of Murdoch la la land, the reptiles seem like they're over Rudd.
Here's the story as it was placed this morning in the lizard Oz:
Scan the Daily Terror and there's a mention under breaking news that Rudd speculation is done and dusted: Clare.
Rudd scores a pic, a video link and a splash in the HUN but it's well down the digital page:
Yep, there he is, just ahead of Putin getting a divorce, before you head off to more top stories.
But the biggest test of all is the heart of toad land, The Courier-Mail, and it's all too predictable that Rudd should cop only two mentions on the digital front page, and not even a pic.
There's the same one line about the Rudd speculation done and dusted in the breaking news, and there's a parochial angle, a one line link through to a story Rudd challenges his local electorate rival toa (sic) public debate.
The irony in that story?
Kevin Rudd has called out his local political opponent, challenging LNP candidate Bill Glasson to a school hall debate.
The former prime minister yesterday threw down the gauntlet, accusing Dr Glasson - the former Australian Medical Association president who hopes to wrench Griffith from him - of hiding from the electorate.
Well you couldn't have accused the Ruddster of hiding from the electorate these past few days, but he's now strangely hidden in the world of Murdoch la la land.
Now it's well known that the birds flock together, swoop and swirl in unison for a reason, and that reason is surely a collective decision to deny the Ruddster oxygen. It might be unconscious, but it's surely visible, or should that be invisible ...
The Ruddster and his colleagues have now so poisoned the nest that the Murdoch reptiles don't even feel the need to give him the sort of space that they'd give exotica like Pauline Hanson running another challenge ... yawn ...
In fact the Ruddster's clown colleague Joel Fitzgibbon scored as much space with his destructive adolescent antics.
That's how confident they now feel about the ascension of Saint Tony.
The truth, one suspects, is that the Murdoch reptiles think they no longer need the Ruddster, the game is in the bag, no reason to keep stoking the feud, feeding more fuel on the fire, maintaining the John Howard/Andrew Peacock status of the battle, because the long absent lord knows, just how bloody tedious, how totally exasperating, what a complete and utter piss-off it is to hear Fran Kelly, once more and yet again, wonder whether Kevin Rudd is about to make a tilt for the ALP leadership, and in the process divine the runes, ferret through the entrails, quibble over the meaning of a word ...
We need to talk about Kevin, she said ...
No we bloody don't ... enough about bloody Kevin.
As always, there's a David Pope cartoon handy for the occasion:
(more David Pope here)
So what are the mice up to at the lizard Oz, while the bananas are at play?
The dickheads with their love of copper are out and about and romping in the lizard Oz once again.
Yep, there's no room for the Ruddster, but over and over and over we get a dickhead, who clearly doesn't live in the pond's street, expounding on the joys of copper.
Now you can if you want, evade the paywall and read Tony Brown's report Copper phobia the big drag on NBN (inside the paywall, yes there is a merciful god and She charges you to access Murdoh la la land), on how there are all these spiffing solutions emerging designed to enhance the greater glory of copper rotting in the rain-sodden, possibly asbestos-infested - who knows - pits outside the pond's home,
It will allow you to contemplate wondrous claptrap like this:
As a result, European operators are planning self-installation models where subscribers buy their modems at retail outlets and don't require a technician to activate their high-speed broadband service - because the copper connection is already there.
There's a lot more, which, the pond being in a kind mood, can only describe as fatuous stupidity, but there is a takeaway message, a fat, bloated cheese-laden Domino's pizza message.
In the new world, in a bid to get an ordinary movie trailer streamed from the United States without incessant hanging, the pond will have to pay for the installation of high speed broadband and then spend hours on the phone with someone in India discussing the deplorable state of match-fixing in cricket in that country ... and somewhere around 2025 there might be sort of high speed broadband on tap.
Ah well, you've got to laugh, and pay, and pay to laugh, why just pay to live, and it could be worse, the pond could be Julian Assange looking for a helping hand as an Australian citizen:
Indeed, and Bob Carr is no concern of the pond, says the pond, so let's end on an up note by noting that Paul Sheehan, in his "soft" Thursday column - so soft it makes a marshmallow feel like stainless steel - was at it again yesterday with Treasure of talent: here are voices worth hearing.
You can't go past Sheehan for sheer utter vacuity and fan twittering of the basest kind, which surely puts his political writing into some kind of richer Delta Goodrem context.
Meanwhile, down at the Opera House, the SSO and a talented gang of their brass and wood-wind playeres were, with the help of Charles Dutoit, making a hearty meal of Frank Martin's concerto for seven wind instruments, timpani percussion and strings - special mention without denigrating the excellent contribution of the others for Emma Sholl on flute.
Dutoit was inclined to the Glenn Goulds during the Mozart - he must have spent too long in Canada and not realised what the punters can hear from the front row - but it all came together in a spiffing Saint-Saëns' Third Symphony (oh yes David Drury, you can play with your organ any time in earshot of the pond).
Sure it's an old warhorse but that's what you expect of a band of professional musicians, to be able to turn a trick on a dime and give the warhorse fresh, energetic life (and if you can't get to the Opera House, you can hear it for free tomorrow night on ABC-FM at 8pm, details here).
So what's the take-home message? Well here's a band of top notch musos in a world class band, and Paul Sheehan blathers on like a homie about The Voice, as it drops in the ratings (here). He should get out a bit more, instead of staying home staring goggle-eyed at the box, frightened of shadows.
It might help improve his political writing too ...
Meanwhile, it's time for a little gallows humour, and as always First Dog is standing by on the gallows. More First Dog here, and if you're on a yearly sub, he remains the best reason to keep Crikey alive. We're shortly going to be in need of a hell of a lot of gallows humour.