Monday, September 02, 2013

Argle bargle, or speaking in tongues part two ...

The point, of course, is that the pond doesn't need to be told how to think, or how to vote, by colonial scribblers heeding their American master's voice.

Even more to the point, the pond doesn't need to pay for publications which tells it how to think, or how to vote.

Since when does a publication allegedly adept at relating to the dinkum larrikin Australia need to publish such an offensive, fawning cover, replete with the most ridiculous copy.

Australia needs Tony?

Oh go wash out your mouth with soap you wretches. It's the familiarity - the use of "Tony" that particularly sticks in the craw, though the wheedling tone of 'neediness' is also exceptionally grating.

Is anyone fooled by such tosh? Has anyone ever met a politician and fallen for that first name gambit? Does anyone really think we need Tony? Let alone want him?

Here at the pond there'll be no advice on how to vote. The pond itself, for example, is trapped in a safe seat with the Minister of Useless Reports as its representative, and once elected, Albo will no doubt go on ignoring his local constituency as he's routinely done for years (a second airport for Sydney and a VFT? You must be ready to join Albo in la la land).

All the pond suggests, in a modest and humble way, is that you use your vote in the Senate in a way that doesn't go to waste.

But as we enter the last desperate week, it means that it's desperate times for anyone who wants to read anything with even a modest level of insight.

Take Paul Sheehan this morning - please someone, anyone take him and throw him or kick him or hurl him as far as you can. There he is, featured front and centre of the quisling Fairfaxians frothing and foaming at the mouth in his usual grumpy way.

Does Sheehan pause at any moment to wonder why the public has never warmed to Opposition Leader Tony Abbott in Voters to cut loose hot-air PM?

Of course not, that would require balance, and a consideration of the damage Abbott did to himself and his image with his years as an attack dog for John Howard, before he turned himself into a feral rabid attack dog for himself.

Instead we cop the usual tedious fear-mongering about unions, and debt, and so on and so forth, but perhaps the most offensive moment comes with the Lord Monckton-trolling Sheehan dares to mention climate change.

Sheehan remains the "magic water" commentator for our times, and what wretched times they are, when the allegedly "Independent. Always." rag always features his lick spittle lackey grovelling opinions at the top of the commentary section on a Monday. As independent as a Liberal party stooge. Always.

The only reason to read? Well to get to the first comments:

Inelegantly phrased, perhaps, in the intertubes manner, but yes, you can go off and have breakfast because there's nothing in Sheehan, no insight, that a parrot couldn't master in a few minutes ...

Over at His Master's Voice, amongst the reptiles at the lizard Oz, the digital carousel of doom is just as predictable. There's pompous Paul Kelly, blathering David "frugality is bad" Uren, Judith "the Dame Slap you have when you don't have Dame Slap" Sloan moaning about unemployment, Dennis "the tie"
Shanahan feeling terribly clever about himself by using the word "Ruddbath" as the opposite of "Ruddslide", and Henry "desiccated coconut" Ergas abandoning any last shred of pretence regarding academic objectivity to whitter on about Rudd and fear and blood lust - as if Abbott himself hadn't spent three years dealing in blood and fear ...

It leaves the pond with only one choice - the growing chorus that has already seen a new way forward, a new solution for Australia:

In its comical way - the free mini jar of nutella is a nice touch - it does raise a serious question.

Does the allegedly sombre and serious MSM now only exist so that wags can have their fun on the full to overflowing intertubes, most likely on Tumblr?

Oh there was one amusing piece, and it was just below Paul Sheehan, as he gushed and groaned like a Murdochian in a most unseemly way, so please allow the pond to do another reveal:

Presumably the wags at Fairfax saw Stiglitz's piece, You don't know how good you've got it as some kind of balance to Sheehan's feral, fetid piece which could have been titled You don't know how bad you've got it.

But it's a fake balance, a faux balance, an ersatz balance, because it's entirely unnecessary, at least if you sensibly didn't bother reading Sheehan and went off for a nice porridge for breakfast in the Tamworth way ...

Of course Stiglitz is one of those people who -apart from winning a Nobel Prize in economics (Sheehan couldn't even win a competition on the back of a corn flakes packet) -  refuses to peddle the drivel of austerity economics:

I was in Australia during the last federal election and noticed then that the tone of the economic debate was both far too pessimistic about the current economy and far too complacent about the risks in the future. Three years later, the obsession with public debt continues to be a distraction from the more fundamental question of how to establish sustainable long-run growth. 
Rather than look through the rear-view mirror at public debt, this election should look forward to the challenge of maintaining Australia's economic success for the future.

Poor old Stiglitz. As if he could get Sheehan, Sloan and Ergas away from looking in the rear-view mirror or perhaps the vanity mirror tucked in the passenger sun visor as "we need Tony" takes the wheel ...

But it did remind the pond of a most satisfactory take down, in the recent September Harpers, by Jeff Madrick, under the header The Anti-Economist, Saving Your Children from a Harvard Education.

Sadly it's behind the paywall, but it's happy assembly of assorted Harvard flakes and follies, including but not limited to Alberto Alesina, Michael Jensen, Greg Mankiw, the racst scribblings of Ph.D candidate Jason Richwine, a withering take down of Kenneth Rogoff and Carmen Reinhart, and best of all, yet another knife in the back - should the pond say incisive perspective? - on the wittering of Niall Ferguson.

It helped that Madrick had personal experience of the cult of Harvard, and at least one Harvard professor agreed with him, with one Harry Lewis offering up in his blog "Saving Your Children from a Harvard Education".

It's what the pond likes - people willing to tackle straw dogs and columnists and academics and politicians given false god status when all they have is feet of clay.

By way of contrast, Sheehan is a party-line hack, a dolt of the Bolter kind, and each time the Fairfaxians flash up a paywall reminder, it reminds the pond to remember that it would no more pay to support Sheehan than it would toss a few coins at a Murdochian begging for alms in King street ...

It's not that the Fairfaxians don't occasionally try, with their borrowed American finery and newfangled ideas:

It's just that it's too little too late.

Only now has Fairfax bothered to work out that in 2004, Indonesia had 729,682 boats and rising, and that, as Mahfudz Siddiq put it, the "buy a boat" plan is crazy talk.  As well as being offensive crazy talk ...

As Dr Christopher Roberts notes, the price of a tattered on its last legs Indonesian fishing boat - say a 100 people at $5,000 a pop - would, on the market values the coalition so loves, amount to a cool half million. Now do the rest of the maths ...

Yet when it was first proposed by Scott Morrison, way back in terms of an election campaign on 23rd August 2013 (Tony Abbott, Scott Morrison announce 'new regional deterrence framework' to stop asylum seekers), where were the Fairfaxians with their analysis?

Oh look, here they come, galloping over the hill on the 2nd September:

Morrison says buying Indonesian boats would save lives and save taxpayers' money. There's no evidence to support the contention. 
A PolitiFact rating of ''pants on fire" applies where a statement is not accurate and makes a ridiculous claim. 
PolitiFact rates Morrison's claim "pants on fire".

Too late. Way too late.

The horse has left the stable, the speaker in tongues has bolted, and the pants have turned to ashes.

No doubt the talk of "pants on fire" will later be deployed as window dressing for the Fairfaxians.

You know, we told you, we warned you, we provided expert analysis, ready to be run when much later in Morrison's career as Minister for Gulags and Deportations, he turns out to be singularly inept, hapless, and hopeless.

But information about Morrison's previous career failures and follies were already to hand, along with his current series of inflammatory statements and risible policy proposals, of the kind you'd expect from a tongue warbler inclined to gibberish, and yet only now, in the dying moments of the campaign, have the Fairfaxians thought of providing an alternative analysis to Sheehan's uxorious scribblings ...

Enough already, time for a dinky di Pat Oliphant cartoon ...


  1. You know the truth, DP, you can handle the truth

  2. And then there's this one

  3. If you want a taste of Morrison's religion, here's a clip, showing people being struck down by the spirit and speaking in tongues.

    Would you want people like this in Parliament?

    Sorry to put you off your day.

  4. No, no, no! In the balanced and fair MSM that front page was meant to read:

    Exclusive. Why Australia went to the dogs:

    * The Sunday Telegraph
    * Australia got Tony

  5. Shire espouses prosperity theology - a dollar down and a dollar a week secures a fortune. Morrison is certain the byeboats money will come his way according to "law".

  6. curious to know your thoughts on this one DP:


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