(Above: the inestimable David Rowe. More Rowe here, and it has to be said, the only reason for the AFR to exist. Help them with a click, even if it means that Rowen Dean lives to be a fool in print for yet another day).
The pond has absolutely no idea why the ABC thought the idea that a roughly forty year old man donning blackface to play a 14 year old Pacific Islander was a winner ...
It might have worked for the Black and White minstrels, or for vaudevillians in the Mo McCackie era, but for the few precious minutes the pond lost and will never recover, it didn't seem controversial, but merely extremely tiresome (though the ABC did its tiresome best to whip up a controversy here, and Debi Enker should hang her head in tiresome shame - if this is successful satire, the pond has lost any idea of the meaning of success).
But it's not just the tiresome Enker, the equally tiresome Graeme Blundell yesterday nominated the show as the 'pick of the day' for the reptiles at the lizard Oz in Life on the inside sees Chris Lilley's talents bloom.
On the bright side, TVS - that's community television in Sydney - was running the Howard Hawks, Cary Grant, Rosalind Russell, Ralph Bellamy Ben Hecht Charles MacArthur comedy His Girl Friday. Whenever Lilley did his cross-dressing routines as a teenage girl, the pond often resorted to Billy Wilder's Some Like It Hot, and so life and the universe balanced itself, and a genuine laugh could be found ...
Cross-dressing is a serious pleasure, as any RAN officer can tell you, and it was almost ruined for the pond by Lilley's capering ...
But it does help explain why the pond finds the universe inexplicable, mysterious and mystifying. What moves some people to laughter invariably moves the pond to tears, and vice versa ...
Perhaps that's why the economy is apparently booming, but we're mired deep in an astonishing budget emergency - a crisis so wide and deep the poor must be savagely punished - and meanwhile the miners are making out like bandits, but they can't afford to be taxed...
Why any hint of touching the fuel excise would have sent Twiggy and Gina into a frenzy, and so the country cousin bumpkins have to be gulled like the red and grey galahs they are - yes, Tamworth, once centre of the world, you elected a gulled galah as your representative ...
And yet, and yet, the buffoon is using his mining money to land in Canberra and torment the reptiles at the lizard Oz and the Abbott government, and it seems Campbell Newman as a bonus, and so readers of the Oz are regaled daily with shocking stories about the villainy of the buffoon.
There's an irony here, and perhaps even a comedy, provided Chris Lilley can be persuaded to don a fat suit the way Tom Cruise did in Tropic Thunder.
No wonder the world is mysterious and mystifying.
Yes, here they are, the daily parade of stories, with the reptiles seemingly incapable of understanding that the more attention they pay to the buffoon, the more the buffoon - like Geoff Shaw - is immediately gratified and rewarded:
That's an EXCLUSIVE? Two renegade buffoons are going the biff?
But it's not just the reptiles. The whole of Murdoch la la land is in the grip of a Clive fever.
The demented Andrew Bolt - hush now, the pond only does the courtesy of describing the Bolter as he describes himself - is in a demented uproar:
The interesting thing isn't the Bolter railing at the buffoon - that's merely tiresome - but the embrace of the word 'demented'.
What does it say when a demented man scribbles about a crazy Clive? So this is how the Abbott government intends to conduct negotiations with Palmer in the Senate? Sending out the kool aid hacks - hacks must hack - in wave after wave of abuse?
But back to the demented one. Has the Bolter at last achieved some deeper understanding of himself?
Did all that expensive red wine and feasting on opera deliver an insight? Or is that whisky? Yes, no doubt everyone caught up on this entry, here (paywall affected):
It's tough when one of your friends falls out with one of your family. Yet such (sort of) is the scenario that has befallen Tony Abbott, courtesy of the contretemps between Communications Minister Malcolm Turnbull — a man firmly placed in the warm bosom of the Liberal family — and News Corp columnist Andrew Bolt. For those who’ve come late to the circus, Bolt is down on Turnbull for being an insufficiently enthusiastic Liberal and for supposedly trailing his coat for the leadership. Turnbull is down on Bolt for suggesting such a thing; the word “unhinged” may have been used. If only Labor’s Jason Clare hadn’t so callously forced Abbott to choose, asking of him in question time, “Who is right? Your friend Andrew Bolt? Or your frenemy* Malcolm Turnbull?” Cheeky. Abbott replied: “In any dispute between a member of my frontbench and a member of the fourth estate, I’m firmly on the side of my frontbencher.” Rather than relying on mere words when the atmosphere is so fraught, why not turn to great art? We asked Bolt which opera would capture the flavour for him. He replied, “I have Verdi’s Otello blasting in the background. Iago reminds me curiously of someone I saw on the telly today.” Hopefully not the PM! Continued Bolt, “I’d pour myself a drop of Sullivan’s Cove, but that would only encourage a comparison with Cassio.” Ah, yes, the gentleman soldier. We’ll see what Turnbull comes up with; a large tapestry would be nice. (*An enemy disguised as a friend. We’re confident this is frenemy’s first Hansard appearance.)
Gentleman soldier indeed, said Crikey, when it picked up the piece, and it indulged in a little additional analysis here (paywall affected):
Bolt’s real predilections. A highly paid migrant with a taste for opera and expensive whisky — sound like the latte-sipping Left? Oh wait, we’ve just described that champion of the workingman, Andrew Bolt. His more rarefied tastes seldom make it into his column or blog, where the constant theme is the Left trying to steal your tax dollars and bludgers who are living a life of luxury on the dole. But lest we forget, The Australian’s Strewth column has reminded us of the true measure of the man.
Yes, the demented one is a prime example of a bludger living a life of luxury, but at least he now seems to be able to acknowledge that he's demented:
Demented radio from a demented man! Or will Steve Price sue for defamation?
What it does remind the world is how thin-skinned the Bolter is. He likes to deliver the cut and thrust abuse and the barbs, but when it comes to a little biff the other way, he retreats to Verdi and whisky.
Which is a tragedy, because it seems his skills as the world's leading climate scientist are going to be urgently needed in the coming years, if a report which accidentally slipped onto the lizard Oz's front page is any guide:
Shocking stuff. How astonishing to find a report by the Climate Institute and consumer group CHOICE being given space in the lizard Oz.
How soon before the Communists take over the country?
But it is a nice cue for the David Pope cartoon, and more Pope here:
Indeed. What a relief he escaped from his meeting with a dead duck Indonesian president without doing a Gerald Ford and stumbling down the steps of the plane:
What else? Well the pond was bemused and mystified by this headline:
But when you read Michael Gordon's beat up puff piece, John Howard rebukes Tony Abbott over fairness (forced video at end of link) it's clear Gordon completely missed the real point:
''One thing I've learnt about politics, and I'm sure Bob's experience would have been the same, Australians fundamentally don't like zealots, fanatics - they get very suspicious of fanatics,'' he said. Both slogans and argument were important in politics, he added, observing ''we have sometimes lost the capacity to respect the ability of the Australian people to absorb a detailed argument''.
''They will respond to an argument for change and reform [but] they want two requirements. They want to be satisfied it's in the national interest, because they have a deep sense of nationalism and patriotism. They also want to be satisfied it's fundamentally fair.''
Yes, it was actually Howard mounting an astonishing, savage attacked on the self-admittedly demented, rabid, off the planet Bolter, and his remarkable influence on and hold over the Liberal party and its more fundamentalist fringe barking mad followers, and on the kool-aid imbibing reptiles that infest the lizard Oz like the dinosaurs that gave Raquel Welch such a hard time ...
Can we have a measure of the delusion involved in this la la world?
Well how about this?
The Australian began its journey to profitability?
Say what? Did they actually run that splash today, with the inimitably comic header "Rationalism takes hold"?
Why don't the reptiles run comedy classes for Chris Lilley to show how it can be done?
Meanwhile, on another planet, back in February:
(And the rest of that mUmBRELLA story here).
God only knows what Chris Mitchell was thinking if only there were a god to know, but the pond finally worked it out, though initially it was truly mysterious and mystifying, like so much in the world is to the pond.
That journey the reptiles at the lizard Oz are on?
It's a never ending journey, a never ending story, and god knows when it will end, but after apologising to all for such a pictorial news.com. au laden piece - perhaps the world will seem less mysterious and mystifying tomorrow - at least the pond can help out mUmBRELLA with a more recent snap of Chris Mitchell: