Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Are we talking bullsh*t or are we talking bullshit at a rollicking north shore dinner party?

Only in Queensland.

Oh wait ...
Only in New South Wales ...

And so on and so forth ... probably only wherever you live.

The quest for a new angle shows "the squirrel factor" runs high as news of the royals - even Prince Chuck, normally an environmentalist feared and loathed by the likes of monarchist Tim Blair - breaks the banks of magazines (oh women think of what you do when you buy them, would the real Dorothy Parker buy "women's magazines) and floods the tabloids, gushing like the breaking of the waters ...

Perhaps most admirable thus far is Anne Twomey, professor of constitutional law at the University of Sydney, scribbling Messing with the royals is a crime (behind the paywall but you know what to do).

Twomey seizes the chance to make an impassioned plea for the NSW parliament to take a stand on the Treason Act of 1351:

Yes, the Treason Act 1351, enacted at the time of Edward III, is really part of the law of NSW. It is so old that the original version was written in medieval French rather than English. In translation it states, among other things, that it is high treason to "compass or imagine" the death of the king or the queen or their eldest son and heir, or to violate the king's wife or his eldest daughter if she is unmarried, or the wife of the king's son and heir. 
To "imagine", in this sense, is not just to think about something happening (otherwise all those officials planning for the Queen's funeral would be in a spot of bother) but to plot or plan it.

It goes without saying that the pond has reported Twomey's act of treason to David Flint, and may the long absent lord have mercy on her soul. Hanging's too good for some of these dissident academics and their modernising ways ... what was good enough for 1351 is surely good enough for now.

And then there was Zoe Williams scribbling Birth of future monarch has animated the unique lunacy of royal watching.

Oh it started out sounding like the sort of treason that should agitate the NSW parliament and shame Twomey:

... the frenzy around Diana would have been a modest village fete compared to this carnival; the arrival of this future monarch somehow animated for me, in a way that nothing has before, the unique lunacy of royal-watching. Waiting for this baby to come out has never had anything to do with its constitutional import, except to use its place in history as a cover for the unabashed prying. There was a woman in labour, whom none of us had ever met, and Nicholas Witchell was disappointed not to be able to give us hourly updates on her vaginal dilation.

But by the end Williams had fallen into benevolent, simpering line, delivering the sort of sentiments that would surely placate the NSW parliament:

... actually, besides the threats to privacy and the hassle of pomp, there have been the inevitable "dramatic comparisons": how was this baby born, compared to its birth-twin in Liberia? What will Kate's post-operative care be like, compared to a mother in the Central African Republic? Even though you can see how irresistible that is to campaigners for maternal health worldwide, how piquant, how potent, is that comparison, I don't think it's fair to Kate Middleton. 
When you make her the emblem of all the inequality in the world, you make her its agent. She isn't; she's a person who's had a baby, as precious and awe-inspiring to her as any baby is to anyone who's just had it. Some other time to rain on their (ridiculous) parade.

Yes she's just a person, just an average Josephine Blow, who happens to live in a castle with a prince, and all's right in Williams' (ridiculous) world.

Never mind, at least it's a distraction, and the pond is sorely in need of a distraction, and the usual distractions don't offer the usual pleasure.

Take Dame Slap today in the lizard Oz, usually a reliable source of fun:

Who could argue with that as a proposition?

Yes Tony "Mr Smooth Humanitarian" Bourke was sounding out of his depth on RN, confronted with claims of what was happening on Manus island, and never mind the rioting that had happened on Nauru shortly before that.

Meanwhile, Tony Abbott has been running around like a headless chook wondering what's been happening and what's the contract with PNG, and calling it a two page document, and all the chooks in the media have been flapping and squawking, and yet what dropped into the pond's email box yesterday?

Exclusive: Our Contract With Manus

Yes, New Matilda claims to have scored a copy of the Manus contract between G4S and the federal government, and thoughtfully put it up on Scribd for the world to see.

So while the PNG deal might remain a mystery, you'd think in the light of talk of what has been happening on Manus island that the mainstream media would be all over this document, examining it, testing its veracity, measuring the claims made by NM, inter alia:

New Matilda and Detention Logs analysis of the Manus contract reveals: 
  • The Immigration Department has set out terms that suggest the standard of care and services on Manus Island may not meet the same quality as facilities in Australia. 
  • There is no requirement for mandated independent audits of the facility. 
  • A weaker financial penalty system has been set up than for the mainland detention centres in Australia.
Did the MSM get the sulks at being scooped by NM?

Well the pond was infinitely reassured by the news that the Auditor-General is on the case auditing Manus, and Tony Bourke is going off personally to sort out the problems, and all will be hunky dory, at least until the election is out of the way, and let's not get too excited about sordid stories of rape and violence.

Oh yes, the pond is sorely in need of distractions, and it's got so the pond can't even have fun with Miranda the Devine:

Worried about News Corp's paywall? Just head off to the Devine's blog under the header The great Australian bulldust detector is beeping. (please explain, why do they allow the blogs and still seek to charge for the content?)

Oh wait, we can have a little fun:

I was at a rollicking north shore dinner party on Saturday night, at which talk turned briefly to Kevin Rudd’s much trumpeted Papua New Guinea “solution” to the asylum seeker boats problem.

Rollicking? North shore? Dinner party?

Oh and they routinely take the piss about the inner west and urban elites, the ponces and the gits, yes they do ...

And then the Devine made much throughout the piece of the splendid bullshit detectors deployed by the great unwashed Australian public:

A well developed bullsh*t detector has always been a quintessential element of the Australian character, part of a cynical, anti-authoritarian streak that perhaps stems from our convict roots.

Yep, it was written throughout as bullsh*t and the pond calls bullshit on anyone who doesn't know how to spell the word bullshit - not to mention the bullshit that credits the anti-authoritarian streak to convict roots and fails to mention much more important factors, such as the union movement, and a readiness of working class people to call people who attend 'rollicking north shore dinner parites' as chronic bullshit artists ...

What's even more astonishing is that the Devine spends considerable time listening to the word of a tobacconist, which is to say a professional dealer in pain, misery, sickness and death.

But then she's really only interested in the opinions and the issue as a way of taking down current chairman Rudd, and as a way of installing Tony Abbott, as if he'll sort things out. Well the pond's not in the business of defending, supporting or cheering on the Ruddster, but if you believe that Abbott will fix things, you really do need a brand new bullshit detector ...

And now as a further distraction, how about this stroll down memory lane, from the Sydney Morning Herald on 9th December 1977, when the sleaze merchants at the Liberal party were up to their usual bag of tricks.

Doesn't poor old Gough look like a snake oil seller, quite possibly a child molester?

Oh Fraser has developed a classic case of the guilts since, but look how he smiles at the character assassination at the time ...

Things only change so that they can stay the same ...

(Below: click to enlarge)


  1. The reference to Fraser is most apt since, like Kevin Rudd crying upon being ousted as leader, Fraser cried when he lost his last election. It seems to be the effect that living in the Lodge has upon politicians. Once there, they seem to think that they should never be evicted.

    Someone recently commented to me that Fraser was obsessed about inflation in the same way Abbott, Hockey and Robb are obsessed about deficit and debt. Fraser was so concerned with inflation that he ignored the unemployed. Contrary to the Liberal claim in the advertisement that you cite, unemployment reached high levels under his government.

    The advertisement also uses the same techniques that Abbott's team use to persuade voters. Have a dream? Tony will fix it. He's the dream fixer.

    The best thing that could happen is to have another hung Parliament. The Opposition Leader would have to grind his teeth and even possibly be forced to sell his derriere. The current Prime Minister would be in the same position as Julia Gillard found herself and the Greens leader might find no-one wants to make deals with them. The fourth estate would be back to the beginning, a little like "Planet of the Apes". Yes, I have a dream, too!

  2. I have received a poster trying to belittle Rudd from the Liberals saying how bad he is and he will not achieve anything and if you vote for Tony how he will save the world.
    They mus have plenty of money if they can continue to keep posting out pamphlets unless of course we the poor old taxpayers are paying the cost.


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