Tuesday, November 18, 2014

In which the hate media turns out yet again to celebrate the do-badders ...

Eek, no wonder Alan Jones is totally alarmed.

The Chinese government has taken over Tasmania, at least if the Mercury's splendid imitation of the People's Daily is any guide.

After listing other prospective sales involving China, Jones told Abbott: “By this time next week who’s going to own little Tasmania? The public are very, very angry about this prime minister, I can tell you.” (here).

But did we get a good price, and will the cheeses and the farm salmon keep flowing?

That's all the pond needs to know, because the apple islanders have always been a difficult, insular bunch.

Why it's got so hard to pick your average pinko Tasmanian from your Chinese commie - and not just in the dark - that even our fearless leader fails the test:

Tony Abbott was toasting Xi Jinping at a special dinner at Parliament House on Monday when he made the gaffe. 
He was summing up the day's developments after the two nations reached agreement on a free trade deal and a speech by Mr Xi to parliament, when he appeared to confuse the island state with the Asian nation. 
"To mark President Xi's visit, Australia and Tasmania and, and – we've said a lot about Tasmania – Australia and China have reached agreements. "It's hard to confuse Tasmania and China - but I have," Mr Abbott said, jokingly shrugging off the error.  (Tony Abbott confuses China with Tasmania, forced video at end of link).

But it wasn't just slips of the tongue that caught out dear leader. Conceptual matters can sometimes put a lot of pressure on the noggin, especially if there's honey in the vicinity and the koala bear is distracted:

The Australian prime minister referred to Xi’s democracy comment at a state dinner held to mark the president’s visit. “I have never heard a Chinese leader declare that his country would be fully democratic by 2050,” Abbott said on Monday night. “I have never heard a Chinese leader commit so explicitly to a rule-based international order founded on the principle that we should all treat others as we would be treated ourselves,” he said. “I thank you, Mr President, for this historic, historic statement which I hope will echo right around the world.” 
That response startled China-watchers. “There is nothing new in what the Chinese president has said. What’s important is actually the concept of a ‘modern socialist country’: it’s a country run by one party, the Communist party,” said Jean-Pierre Cabestan, an expert on Chinese politics at Hong Kong Baptist University. “I’m afraid Abbott has been a bit too optimistic … He seemed a bit overwhelmed having so many heavyweights around him.” 
While it might be argued that Abbott was suggesting Xi should be held to his use of the word democracy, “I don’t think that was his intention,” Cabestan added. (Tony Abbott lauds Xi Jinping's 'commitment to fully democratic China').

Sometimes the pond thinks dear leader might be overwhelmed at the heavyweights around him at the teddy bears' picnic.

It's admirable in its own surreal way, to think that Xi would travel to Australia to confirm that the Communist party would hand over rule to the people, and then by 2050, turn the country into a fully fledged democracy.

It's up there with a belief in transubstantiation, Andrew Bolt and Maurice Newman as world-leading climate scientists, coal as the future of humanity, and Rupert Murdoch willingly handing over control of News Corp to its actual, long-suffering shareholders (golly, wasn't that a close call? How long before Chairman Rupert and his crony children experience a family Gang of Four moment? How long before there's a few bad words about Saudis in the Murdoch rags? Rupert Murdoch's News Corp cops major investor revolt).

As for the Alan Jones matter, how sweet it was to see. Now the parrot is barking mad, and paranoid to boot, and that goes without saying, but all the same there was a special pleasure to see the squawker turn on the master, and deliver assorted sharp nips with the beak.

For once, it's worth letting the forced video roll, advertisement and all, in Failing the 'pub test': Alan Jones blasts Tony Abbott over government's free trade deal with China, though some might prefer the edited three minute highlights of the carry on at the Graudian in Tony Abbott tries to ease fears over China trade deal after Alan Jones tirade.

It's an exceptional pleasure to watch a bully get bullied, and adopt a meek, ever so humble role as supplicant.

In fact the new regime has produced so many moments of high and low comedy in recent times that Andrew P. Street unveiled the inner wag, stole all the pond's thunder, and scribbled the details of the highlights in View from the Street: Awww, is Alan Jones not the PM's BFF anymore?

Now the pond isn't bitter. Everyone is welcome in the merry pranksters' bus, and the more colour, confusion and chaos, the more the world can resemble dear leaders's vision.

Naturally Street featured the parrot at full squawk, and did the unforgivable by pointing out how the interview revealed deep down how Abbott agreed with the parrot on the science. Abbott never attempts to contradict the likes of the parrot when they go into full barking mad climate denialist mode, because they're really saying what he thinks. So instead he swings into nudge and wink and dog whistle and 'no magic wand' mode ...

And Street also ran with Angela Merkel asking Greg Hunt to sound vaguely intelligent and develop a plan the world could see on the subject of Australia's aims in relation to climate change ...

It led Street to a pondism which assures him of the keys to a nice little bathing hut at the warm end of the pond:

So, to recap: Abbott urgently needs to start taking climate change seriously, ignore it completely, consolidate international plans along with our trade partners, remove environmental legislation, expand and destroy renewable energy and resolutely do everything he can to both address and deny global warming.

Well at least it helps explain why in recent times, Abbott came across, not as a man capable of visionary and inspirational leadership, but as a leader with the vision of a gnat ...

Why even David Rowe has taken to channeling the parrot (and more Rowe here):

And has there been a better recent portrait of Abbott than the one offered by David Pope (and more Pope here).

But enough of the fun, because the pond isn't just about jolly hockey sticks, it's about doing the hard yards, taking the zealot ideological ball up the middle.

First up there's the pond challenge, which is getting trickier and tougher by the weak.

Can anyone boast of having made it to the end of the insufferable Brendan O'Neill's interview with the insufferable Christina Hoff Sommers, who amongst many other absurdities, seems to think that equal pay for women is done and dusted as an issue, and yet still manages to call herself an "equity feminist" - thereby proving she knows even less about equity than she does about feminism.

Can anyone claim to have made it to the bitter end of Brendan O'Neill indulging in what is quaintly dubbed a "monologue" but which in reality is an epic trolling rant? (Authoritarianism or emancipation or just a British git making out like a bandit at Australian taxpayers' expense, and laughing all the way to the bank).

And then there's the ongoing obligations of reptile watch.

What's interesting about the reptiles is there capacity for Orwellian appropriation of words, which can then be turned into weapons of abuse. The result is that the lizard Oz now on a daily basis has the tone, style and class of a blog. Take the Caterists this day:

Yes, because "do-badders" should be all the go ...

Yes, in the world of the Caterists, if you want to do good, you're immediately suspect. Do evil is the first rule ...

And then came Keith Delacy:

Because the Murdochian hate media, doling out their hate and bill, wasn't impressed by a do-nothing statement?

When you open up with that sort of splash, you're doomed to the irrelevance of a Gerard Henderson, lashing out at the decline of civilised discourse, while splashing around abuse about sandal-wearers and luvvies ...

And what to make of this effort for Gary Johns?

Now there's a witty play on words, eh me old cock, me old gay penguin ...

But you have to admire the hard-working diligence of the reptiles as they go about their fervent denialism (does Abbott reading the rag help explain why the rest of the world looked at him like he was at best misinformed, at worst barking mad?)

Who knows where they dig up the likes of Delacy, but find these climate warriors they do.

Delacy is tagged as a former Queensland Labor treasurer (possibly to the left of Genghis Khan, possibly not), and a former chairman of Macarthur Coal, and therefore immensely qualified to speak on climate science. So how does he speak?

The leaders seemed unperturbed about a possible negative reaction to their do-nothing announcement. Officials believed the majesty of the occasion and the semi-religious approach to ­climate change by most of the ­global media would tranquillise any response.

Ah, the old "it's a religion" approach, adopted by most of the global media, though it seems these days, you can be semi-pregnant and so semi-religious ...

What this does is establish Delacy's credentials as a pragmatic, can-do man, not given to delusions like transubstantiation. It also suggests he's got absolutely nothing to offer except empty rhetoric and platitudes.

So what does Delacy think of the 'do nothing' schemes and plans of Greg 'the walrus' Hunt and Tony Abbott, who both claim to have embraced the religion, at least to the extent of having decided to piss a cool two and a half billion or so on ceremonial obligations?

Naturally he doesn't have a word to say about any of that - that would involve contortions of the Streetian kind detailed above - so instead he resorts to splendid, rip-roaring insights of this kind:

For a lame duck president, Obama seemed very comfortable on the world stage. He could build his legacy by delivering speeches dripping with moral virtue to ­gullible students who (according to one official) “didn’t know shit from cake!”

Well there you go, as good an example as any that Delacy has rhetorical shit for brains.

Does he really, for example, think that mentioning "one official" of an anonymous kind gets him off the hook of a judging a whole bunch of people, their intelligence, understanding and perceptions?

Wouldn't it have been better, more direct, more honest, both rhetorically and scientifically, for Delacy to admit that no one had done a decent survey of the gullibility and moral virtues of the assembled students, and instead resorting to the specious notion of a chin wag with "an official", it was just Delacy who didn't like students, especially students who didn't agree with him ...

What to make of this sort of specious, half-baked nonsense?

Despite the big swing to the Republicans in the recent congressional elections, he was confident the future of the Democrats was assured. As one official explained, the long-term goal of the Democrats was to increase the number of people who depended on the government for their livelihood to over 50 per cent of the population. “These people would never vote Republican because of a mortal fear that Republicans might seek to balance the budget!” 

Oh sure, and there'll be a thousand year Democrat reich the moment a hundred per cent of the population is on welfare ...

By golly, that "one official" is busy doing a lot of explaining and according. (Actually the pond talked to one official who explained that the Tea Party was intending to take over Tasmania before China got hold of it).

The above is an example of an alternative media report that might have come from a non-progressive correspondent attending last week’s historic climate change media conference by US and China presidents.

Actually the above is an example of stupid ...

That's how pathetic, and desperate, it gets these days at the lizard Oz, as the reptiles fling anything and everything at the notion of coherent action in relation climate change ... because deep down, and just below the surface, they're flagrantly, nakedly, obviously, in the denialist camp ...

Today's editorial shows how devious it can get ...

The reptiles will let you read More heat than light in climate without charging you a gold brick, and what's interesting is the way that the logic routinely proposes one thing, and then elevates the direct opposite.

So the reptiles' alleged support of a market mechanism turns out to have been misguided - Tony Abbott was right - and it's coal, coal, coal for Australia - all the while purporting to accept climate science, and to agree that something should be done (though perhaps not now, or at least not immediately, or maybe whenever the coal runs out).

When you pick the guff from the guff, this is the sort of stuff you get:

Coal, unavoidably, is central to the future; so coal efficiency, clean coal technology and Australia’s relatively clean-burning coal are crucial parts of the equation. 

Yep, because Victorian coal is a real winner. Just ask the citizens of Morwell. And clean coal technology is just around the same corner it's been for a couple of decades. Just ask the CSIRO, but make sure to cut their funding while you're there ...

As the WA Premier, Colin Barnett, highlighted yesterday (with just a little self-interest), the domestic and export opportunities for gas are also enhanced by climate action. As indeed is our uranium export industry. To paraphrase Mark Twain, reports of the death of the energy and resources sector are greatly exaggerated.

But sssh, don't mention renewables. Not a word, please.

And then this:

The key point of Mr Obama’s deal with Xi Jinping is that whatever the US and China do on climate, they will do it without a price on carbon. This tends to vindicate Tony Abbott’s decision to opt out of carbon pricing because this market mechanism — still preferred by this newspaper — can only work efficiently if our major trading partners join.

Yes, it's a preference, but can we think about it for the next century or so.

I mean, we prefer it, but let's not do anything about it, instead let's revile it, and disdain it, which might seem a bit odd for a preference, so we can adopt our real preference, which is to have a tidy socialist scheme of the government picking winners and flinging money at the pockets of the big polluting end of town.

At around that point, you end up in a Streetian, Lewis Carroll universe, where a preference is actually code for intense dislike and resolute inaction ...

Which is how you can then end up like Malcolm Turnbull, explaining how all the cuts to the ABC are so and thus and just and right (and it seems the pond's favourite, ABC FM, will cop a lot of damage, not that a philistine glad-hander like Turnbull would care).

Turnbull is implementing a series of cuts which break a major election promise. He is in that sense, a liar's liar, or, if you will, a curr's curr ...

His reward will be to always to yearn for the preciousss... and never receive it ...

(Below: an old First Dog dream, as if Abbott, the parrot, Delacy, and the reptiles of Oz didn't exist. Sorry Dog, it's coal, coal, coal for Australia, it's central to the known universe, but at least you can find new First Dog here).


  1. DP, looks like Bolt got up on the wrong side of the bed this morning and briefly went off the reservation:


    1. OMG could this spell the end for the Abbott regime?

    2. The funniest line? This on Bill "zinger" Shorten:

      The Government is getting killed in bare-knuckle politics.

      It must be really weird to be Andrew Bolt ... How about this one?

      - the minister most admired by the Left-wing media, Malcolm Turnbull, is in a portfolio in which there is little call for him to use his undoubted influence and charm to sell the Government to its media critics. Instead, as Communications Minister he is more likely to protect the media critics from the Government.

      Yes, like saving the ABC from savage, election-promise-breaking cuts ...

      It must be really weird to be Andrew Bolt, but the pond admires your strength, guts and fortitude Anon, and as a result of this link, you are well on your way to your very own bathing box in a sheltered, private part of the pond

  2. DP, you must take some responsibility for this latest Jones rant, even allowing or the pleasure of Tiny Abbott being on the receiving end. In giving Bolt the title of Parrot, you took away the one thing Jones wears with distinction. There can only be one Parrot in Australian media, as Jones so so ably showed in his dressing down of Abbott.

    And while some of views bordered on dementia, Jones managed to pack in more lies in a few sentences than the Grand Liar himself could do in half an hour. He defends his title impressively.

    So the occasion demands that the Bolta be given another monitor. I thought of the Dutch Elm Disease, but refrained on account of my reluctance to draw ethnicity into, just as I refrain from shouting "go home, you Pommy Bastard" every time Nick Cater or Brendan O'Neill utters some arrogant absurdity.

    The parrot family is all right for the Bolter, just as long as he can be differentiated from the old master. Possibly The Galah, except that these birds are not nearly as stupid as Aussies seem to imagine. The Budgie Snuggler, with its nice interplay with his manlove of Abbott, is possible. My own inclination is towards the Sulphur-Crested Cockatoo, on the grounds that he is certainly Cocky as they are. And the yellow crest appears very quickly when they're angry.

    Plus my uncle, as an ex-sailor, once had one (wings clipped) as a pet. It was a bad-tempered little bastard who took every opportunity to keep kids in their place with a sharp nip. If that wasn't sufficient deterrent, he'd pull the valves out of their bike tyres. I gave him a very wide berth.

    1. Do you mean moniker, GD? As in "So the occasion demands that the Bolta be given another moniker."

    2. Yep, I did indeed. My apologies. Not even a decent phoneme.

      Made a couple of grammatic omissions, too. I will have to start using the 'preview function.

    3. I don't know, GD, why not give the Bolta another monitor? Frankly the one he's using at the moment hasn't got any red or green in it, and it's a bloody useless picture, and it's so dour, grey, bleak, bitter and unhappy, you'd swear you were back watching Santamaria in black and white on a twenty one inch screen .... while the one-eyed magpie the pond had in the family chased the pond around the house, squawking and pecking and demanding meat ... (that's when it wasn't sitting on the bedhead depositing guano in such quantities it might have saved Nauru ...)

      But if you want a creature, how about those black birds that circle Amsterdam making sinister noises? By good luck, the common blackbird is known as Turdus merula ... Or what about the ringlsang?

      Grass snake (ringslang): A small non-venomous snake with yellow band around its neck and two rows of small, dark patches on its back. They eat frogs and small mammals. When they feel threatened, they play dead and can even release the smell of a dead body.

      We could work on the non-venomous bit ...

  3. Is it just me or does Abbott look seriously sick? Watching him with Xi Jinping today, I was struck by how robustly heathy the Chinese president looked and how gaunt and jaundiced Tone was. Dead duck either way now I guess.

    1. Yep GH, the pond has noticed the gauntness, which is getting a little like Jake Gyllenhaal in Nightcrawler.
      Maintaining hard physical exercise, while needing to do endless amounts of stressful meetings and work long hours, while growing old, will eventually catch up with you. This is bipartisan - it's remarkable how stressed out Obama started to look, but in Queensland, away from all his cares and woes, he managed to regain something of the old self.
      Unfortunately for Abbott, he's a stumblebum with a careless mouth, and it often catches up with him - who knows who scripted his opening remarks for the G20, but they should have been sacked (unless that meant Abbott should have sacked himself). Abbott's had a year to grow into the role, but instead it seems he's had a year designed to send the likes of the Bolter and the parrot into hysterical free fall (as per above).
      What's worse, there's no sign that next year isn't going to feature more of the same stumblebum routines, aided and abetted by the PUPsters ...
      Abbott's intensely competitive, but some things in politics require more than competition ... which is why he's looking more and more like a loser ...


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