I know, I know, as Sybil would always say to the telephone when considering a bit of gossip.
And we now have government of the bigots, by the bigots, for the bigots...
What a fine flowering it is.
1. a person who is intolerant of any ideas other than his or her own, esp on religion, politics, or race
Actually as an aside, the origin of the word has more than a passing resemblance to Monty Python farting in a general direction:
Bigots may have more in common with God than one might think. Legend has it that Rollo, the first duke of Normandy, refused to kiss the foot of the French king Charles III, uttering the phrase bi got, his borrowing of the assumed Old English equivalent of our expression by God. Although this story is almost surely apocryphal, it is true that bigot was used by the French as a term of abuse for the Normans, but not in a religious sense. Later, however, the word, or very possibly a homonym, was used abusively in French for the Beguines, members of a Roman Catholic lay sisterhood. From the 15th century on Old French bigot meant "an excessively devoted or hypocritical person." Bigot is first recorded in English in 1598 with the sense "a superstitious hypocrite." (here)
Of course the head bigot, which is to say chief bigot, tried to reconcile the irreconcilable:
"Well Mr President, people do have a right to be bigots, you know ... In a free country, people do have rights to say things that other people find offensive, insulting or bigoted."
What to do? What to say?
Of course this Government is determined to try to ensure that Australia remains a free and fair and tolerant society, where bigotry and racism has no place ...
Except of course in the government of bigots valiantly working to smooth the path and pave the way for bigots expressing bigotry ...
So, Attorney General for bigots, will Chris Kenny graciously withdraw his action against the ABC for featuring a satirical piece which suggested that Mr. Kenny did things with dogs? Or will you persuade him and the rest of the Murdochians to fall into line?
After all, it must seem like a harmless bit of fun to you.
Of course not and that's where all the idle chatter about freedom of speech is so much horse shit. There have always been limits on the freedom to speak one's mind and to say things that are denigratory or offensive.
What the government of bigots, by and for the bigots, is wanting to do is to make good the promises made to the Murdochians, as fine a tribe of bigots as has been assembled in recent times.
But does any of this make the Murdochians uncomfortable?
Like the abject Abbott, caught in the cross hairs of an Attorney General who is demonstrably a bumbling fool who routinely speaks before he thinks...
After all, it's long been known that this is a rectification program designed to sooth the Bolter.
How does the Bolter feel, by way of Brandis innuendo, that he is a bigot, saying bigoted things, who requires an adjustment to an act of parliament to carry on his bigoted ways?
No, no, no. The Bolter isn't part of your average rabble. He's not one of the attack dogs, the baying hounds.
Why he's a sophisticated and refined gent, he is. He's dead set against vulgarians, truly he is, not to mention fair-skinned people cruising their way to paradise by pretending to be black:
Well indeed, that's way worse than being a bigot. What's the chance they don't listen to opera and drink a decent Grange?
You can read the rest of it here, but be warned, right beneath this toffy sort of piety, the Bolter has printed an image deemed by Chris Kenny to be hurtful and defamatory, and presently the subject of a legal action.
Why did he do this? Is he so intent on hurting the ABC that he'd wilfully hurt the feelings of Chris Kenny all over again?
Will Kenny take action against the Bolter for further circulating and giving currency to the alleged defamatory image?
Will the HUN issue an apology for the Bolter's unseemly behaviour, which looks very much like a vulgarian on a hunt for other alleged vulgarians?
It's all too hard for the pond so early in the morning.
Meanwhile, how pleasing to see that the Catholic church is well along the six phases of a project, and have now moved from the search for the guilty to the punishment of the innocent, and to the scapegoating of others not around to comment or defend themselves, and praise and honor for the alleged nonparticipants.
Now we all know how to get ahead in a Christian church and make it to a top dog position - deny all knowledge of what went on, adopt a hands off management style, blame others when it buggers up, and take no responsibility for anything that happened. And then having ruined lives, explain how the church will do its very best not to ruin lives in the future ...
Perhaps the pond has a jaundiced, bigoted view, but it's impossible not to feel like Alice going down the rabbit hole when reading the semantic contortions and the lack of humanity in some of Cardinal Pell's evidence:
Cardinal George Pell removed an expression of regret from a letter to the victim of a pedophile priest because it was “illogical” when the Catholic Church was disputing whether any abuse occurred, an inquiry has heard.
The royal commission into child sexual abuse saw the tracked changes of edits made by Dr Pell to a draft letter to John Ellis, a former altar boy who suffered years of abuse at the hands of a Sydney priest, Father Aidan Duggan.
Mr Ellis said the letter, which he received on Christmas Eve, 2002, felt like the church was slamming the door in his face by rejecting his complaint.
The original draft, prepared by the church’s former director of professional standards John Davoren, suggested an expression that the church “very much regret any hurt that you have experienced”. Dr Pell told the commission he removed the reference to regret because it was “illogical”.
“Because if hurt had been caused that would indicate that the case was established,” he said.
“If the case could not be established then the hurt could not be established - that was my reasoning, I was attempting to be honest.” Dr Pell also removed a sentence which read “as you are aware, this is not to suggest you are not believed”.
He told the commission the sentence was “inconsistent” with the church’s position that Mr Ellis’s case could not be established. “The whole point of this letter was to say the matter couldn’t be resolved and I don’t like talking out of both sides of my mouth, especially to a victim,” Dr Pell said.
The commission also saw edits where Dr Pell deleted a reference to Mr Ellis’s desire to “achieve some peace of mind” by meeting with Father Duggan, saying instead that he understood Mr Ellis wished for a meeting.
“I didn’t want him to be feeling that something was going to be done which wasn’t going to be done,” Dr Pell said.
“Obviously I was keen for him to have peace of mind but I didn’t want to mislead him.” Under questioning from Commissioner Peter McClellan, Dr Pell agreed that his position that Mr Ellis’s story could not be established because Fr Duggan could not respond was wrong and not in accordance with the church’s own procedures for abuse complaints. (here, may be Oz paywall affected)
There was plenty more, but soon enough Tony Abbott's spiritual mentor and inter alia, one of the world's top climate scientists can head off to Rome having washed his paws and blamed others, "muddlers" and never mind the muddler who employed muddlers, and expressed formal remorse in a way that was remarkably lacking any sense of genuine personal remorse or contrition ...
Meanwhile, Arthur Sinodinos was experiencing his own inquiry moment,
Former Sydney Water chief executive Kerry Schott told the Independent Commission Against Corruption on Monday that she cautioned him that AWH was charging expenses to the utility that were ''not appropriate''.
Despite the warnings, Senator Sinodinos remained as chairman of the company for another year. (and there's way too much more here)
And now suddenly Mathias Cormann has put dear Artie's dear reforms on hold:
The Abbott government has backed down on a key element of its controversial reforms to financial advice in a bid to head off a backlash from seniors, consumers and parts of the $1.5 trillion superannuation industry.
Freezing rules that were to be imposed within days, the government said it would launch new consultations on changes to the way consumers were charged for financial advice on retirement savings and personal investments.
Critics feared it would allow the return of hidden commissions that would cost workers thousands of dollars a year. (Financial advice on hold, Oz paywall affected because you need to pay to get decent financial advice)
Oh dear. The rorters will have to wait a little longer to stick their snouts firmly in the trough, but fear not, remember this is a government for the rorters by the rorters, and in due course truth and justice for a rorting way of life will win through.
Is there any sign of cheer and joy then?
Any chink of light in the darkness?
Well the man who did a more than fair passing imitation of Oscar Wilde's sky rocket has spluttered off in another direction, and now that it's closed, the pond feels no compunction re-printing the result of the Fairfaxians' most unscientific poll:
(with the accompanying story here).
But no, that's not the upside.
The upside is that you can read the Oscar Wilde story about the sky rocket ending up as a stick in the mud by heading off to Project Gutenberg for The Happy Prince and Other Tales. It's called The Remarkable Rocket.
Oh and you can find plenty of David Rowe cartoons here.
Now there's an upside.
And with all the fuss about bigots, the pond quite forgot to mention the nauseous spectacle arising from the grand tour of the gulags by the chief bigot ...
It was such a bizarre sight, so craven, and so uninterested in human rights or humanity - what you might expect of a man with a certain kind of spiritual mentor - that it even stirred the usually phlegmatic and cautious Michelle Grattan to make a few remarks.
Grattan is inclined to the anodyne, so fearful is she of being seen as unbalanced or favouring one side at the expense of her journalistic "objectivity", but something snapped when she scribbled Tony Abbott, PNG and asylum: an Orwellian parallel reality:
At their joint news conference Abbott said he was gratified to have from O'Neill his assurance that the people and government of PNG were committed to “staying the course”.
“I really value the mateship that Peter O'Neill has shown to Australia on this.” The following day he said: “The co-operation that we are getting from PNG is a real act of mateship on their part and I’m really thrilled by it.”
It’s a sort of Orwellian parallel reality: people held in dreadful conditions, two government conspiring to traduce their rights and suppress as much information as they can, and no one having the slightest clue about the future of people who really did flee persecution – while Abbott declares it’s been “a very successful visit”.
Ah yes, but in the land of bigots, where bigotry is right and proper, where's the harm?
Cue David Pope, and more Pope here:
And how are the assiduous, dedicated, devoted knob polishers and hagiographers tracking all this?
Yes, never mind the competence, never mind the dirty linen, never mind the celebration of bigotry, never mind the snouts in trough.
Got away with another one ...
Got away with another one ...
Oh well, I'm living in the land of Oz
I'm living here because
My folks lived here, yeah they brung me up
And their folks lived here too.
Yes, and their folks and my folks know
They came from far away
They made a stand and they grabbed some land
And they settled down to stay
Now we're all living in the land of bigots
Living in the land of bigots
Out there we're living in the land of bigots ...
Apologies to Ross Wilson. Sorry, Mr Wilson, the pond can't find it in its heart to finish on your original line "Uh huh we got to change yeah".
Bigotry's so neat and cute ...