Tuesday, February 03, 2015

DJ Tone Def V. The Talking Dead ...

Let's start with a joke:

Yes, Pope is back, and just in the knick of time, and more Pope here. The pond forgives him for taking a break, but it better not happen again.

Oh heck, let's have another one, just to kick start the morning:

By golly that David Rowe can do an accurate likeness, and as usual more Rowe here.

Now it's on to the rest of the eternal comedy. Take a squiz at this header at the bottom of the Currish Snail:

Judas MPs?

That reminds the pond of the old philosophical conundrum. If God's all seeing, all knowing and all intervening, why did She set Judas up for the fall?

Never mind, let's hear it for the Judas MPs. 

The pond has always had a sneaking regard for Judas, shopping that pompous righteous blatherer, so the pond is determined to honour this day Andrew Laming and Warren Entsch.

Step up gentlemen. If this is being Judas, then that's the new way to describe people determined to implement decent policies in a decent way, and the proposal of a private members' bill to reverse the issuing of knights and dames is the first act of decency in a long time to emerge from within the Abbott government.

Just in case you missed it:

That story, with links and audio is at the ABC here.

And yes Mr Laming, though it counts for nothing in this meaningless, alienated electronic graffiti age, you have the enormous support of the pond.

It was the thing that Abbott could have done in his already notorious speech - well we could hardly expect the Gettysburg address could we Barners? - but he fudged it. 

Instead he blathered on about having listened and heard and acted, but all he did was flick pass the pain of monarchism off to a committee, instead of showing genuine remorse by abolishing the bizarre, antiquated notion.

But then genuine remorse and insight was singularly lacking throughout Abbott's alleged mea culpa. Even the most spectacular back flip and broken promise relating to PPL was replaced by a shadowy, amorphous notion that - months down the track - the Liberal party might now deign to come up with a replacement family package. Long on fuzzy rhetoric, short on detail.

All that was left was a flurry of slogans in the usual style, a style honed over the years into the usual nattering negativity. (If you missed it, you can give Abbott's site a hit here, or find it on Crikey here if you'd rather not).

The format itself is hopeless, and provides any number of opportunities for an expert political eel to wriggle away from any question. 

For example, when Abbott blathered on about the burdening of future generations with enormous debt, the pond wanted to shout "so how does that square with burdening future generations of students with enormous debt?", but by that time, there was another journalist standing to ask another question.

For the rest, as Bernard Keane noted in Crikey, Abbott offered yet more in the way of xenophobia and entitlement.

Yes, it was that desperate - Islamic bashing in exchange for Abbott's continuing employment - along with some blatant misinterpretations, such as proposing that it was the people that gave Abbott the job, when in fact it was the party room.

And there was the usual arrogance. Like the joke about Queenslanders voting in the recent election in a state of absent-mindedness ...

That's schizophrenia for you. Celebrating the voters and then berating them as absent-minded donkeys ...

But enough already about the speech. Everyone will have their own opinion of the display, the question is, what did the krazed kommentariat make of it? And there we're in for the long haul, because the paid chattering class were in full on chatter mode.

First of all, is the leadership still in play? Somehow the pond, surveying the electronic graffiti, suspects it is:

A big shout out to those absent-minded Townsville folk, celebrated in the pond for the first time, and isn't that illustration the SMH used in its front page splash to something grand to see again?

But let's burrow down, because that assembly of shrieking headlines omitted the most important set of krazed kommentariat chateau cardboard columnists, the reptiles of the lizard Oz. And what a fine flurry of floozies was let loose in the rag today:

Yes, in most of the headlines, there's the distinct impression of a caged, boxed in PM battling on like a boofhead in the ring at Oxford ...

And there was much consequent hand-wringing:

Out of that motley group, the pond most loved this illustration:

Oh the Caterists undercut with a single cartoon as a kamikaze member of the Right devours his own ...

As for our man who should have been in Singapore, for those wondering what the answer to Greg "bromance" Sheridan's key question is, everyone relax, because there's no surprises today. 

The bromancer is back in the tent, praising his proud and courageous friend, and offering hope to all:

A new Liberal leader would have to confront exactly the same underlying political reality. And he — or she — would do so presiding over the rabble of a shattered and hopelessly divided party. 
The best option for the Liberals remains the hard one. But there are no easy options. It is to rally around Abbott and emulate the give ’em hell Harry Truman campaign in 1948 and win an election no one thought was winnable.

Yes, get into that kitchen and drop the bomb Tony ...  do a Campbell Newman.

But wait, there's more, much more, because in its usual way, the lizard Oz's editorial also held out signs of hope and yearning:

Technically incorrect?

Is that the new way to say totally stupid?

How about this overnight?

Golly, how did they get the people of the NT involved in that one?

But back to the reptiles:

He made a good fist of it? Only in an increasingly desperate Murdoch la la land.

Meanwhile, over at the Terror, the contradictions got poignant.

Oh Akker Dakker, such turmoil. Have another snort:

And such ridicule:

It got so the Terror, tired of trying to get Abbott to sack Credlin, demanded another blood sacrifice:

It seems anyone and everyone's head might roll, except for the anointed one, battling on the ropes in fine rope a dope style.

But here's the thing. Hockey's inextricably linked with Abbott. If Hockey goes, he's more than likely to take Abbott with him. And Hockey knows that if Abbott goes, he's gone too.

Oh it's too delicious. Better get back on to Credlin, Daily Terror ...

What else?

Well even the Bolter wasn't convinced by the speech. Oh sure, he put in some good and kind words in his HUN column, but the conclusion was mixed, even as he maintained a state of agitation and alarm about the 'warmist' Turnbull (yes, the world's greatest climate scientist is always alert and on the job):

He (Abbott) said he’d drop his expensive and unloved paid parental leave scheme, consult colleagues more, and leave the appointment of knights and dames to the Council for the Order of Australia. 
And he promised less pain in the next Budget: “Because we have done much of the hard work already, we won’t need to protect the Commonwealth Budget at the expense of the household budget.” 
Fine words, but dumping the parental leave scheme is another broken promise; Abbott has promised before to consult; the deficit is far from fixed; and the Government still wants to make patients pay more to visit doctors. 
That points to the terrible reality still facing Abbott: our finances need fixing, and he still needs to persuade a feral Senate and a hostile public. 
Unless Abbott backs his words with deeds, the respite he won yesterday will be brief.

So suddenly there's no budget emergency? Suddenly the next budget can keep on blowing out and no one will mind? The hard work's already done, when everyone knows the hard work stalled and was comprehensively fucked by confused policy signals, such as spending the co-payment on a research junket for big pharma and big medicine ...

And why is the Senate feral? Because Abbott has all the consultative style of a nightclub bully swinging haymakers ...

And now comes this:

UPDATE: TONY Abbott has refused to comment on a report that he asked his deputy, Julie Bishop, for a commitment on Sunday that she would not challenge his leadership. 
Mr Abbott was asked about the Sky News report this morning. 
“I think people find all that insider Canberra stuff so boring, so absolutely and utterly boring,” he told the Nine Network. “I have meetings with Julie Bishop all the time.” 
Pressed further, Mr Abbott said: “I am not going to play these Canberra insider games.” 
The Sky News report, which is unsourced, says Mr Abbott met with Ms Bishop on Sunday afternoon. He sought a commitment that she would not run against him but Ms Bishop “refused to promise the Prime Minister she will not make a challenge for the leadership of the Liberal Party”. (HUN here).

This is the story now, and it's not going to go away.

It might die down a little, but everything in the future is going to be refracted through the leadership issue. If the pond had a dollar for every time a pundit mentioned the genie being out of the bottle, the pond could retire comfortably rich in a pad next to Reg Grundy in the Bahamas ...

How far has it spread?

Why as far as Chairman Rupert's WSJ:

Yep, Abbott is now being ridiculed internationally as a flop and a failure, with the news fed in digestible gobbets to Americans.

And now, exhausted at how tall and wide ranging the tower of babel has grown , and with the surface barely scratched, the pond offers up this additional highlight:

Two points here. When Tony Abbott laughed at electronic graffiti, did he realise he was in reality laughing at the mainstream media, now remorseless in its click baiting routines? You know, have you heard the 21 fatuous things Christopher Pyne said and did this week? You know, 21 things you must do for your poodle Pyne ...

Secondly, the pond will do a spoiler, and say it was just another graceless note struck by the graceless poodle Pyne, as he seized on the occasion  of launching Gehry's building to yet again peddle his own agenda, rather than simply celebrate the opening of the building in style (though if you want to reward the Fairfaxians for their click baiting ways, you can head off here, but watch out for the forced video).

What a klutz team, headed by a klutz leader absent mindedly offending voters ...

It will be bloody and it will be damaging, observed Paul Biongorno this morning on RN, and by golly the pond wouldn't have it any other way ...

Let there be blood, and let there be lots of it, the bloodier the better ... yes, the bloodier the better ... and I say a third time, the bloodier the better ...

Sheesh, now the pond's sounding like an Abbott parrot, with those three word slogans repeated three times, like an Ancient Mariner determined to ruin the hearing of anyone within earshot ...

The lottery of life? Someone always gets a dud ticket, but in Abbott's case, it'll be a hearty dose of parliamentary super and a lycra-clad lifestyle ... no wonder he can maintain a state of delusion ...

(Below: and still the jokes keep coming, and more Moir and Petty to be found here).


  1. You started with a joke, Dorothy, and I will contribute another joke. My joke begins with the Cater, fiction writer, in today's Oz.

    "Tony Abbott-haters can’t cope with reality" is the title. And then comes this opening:

    "THE challenge of conquering Labor’s mountain of debt would have defeated a less tenacious prime minister by now. To do so weighed down by your predecessors’ other unwelcome legacy — a deficit of trust in the entire political class — requires strength of will rarely seen in modern politics."

    The rest was full of humorous distortions and queasy untruths. I thought he bid farewell to the Oz, must be a ghost writer.

    1. Don a purple star Anon for actually reading the Caterist, and for that opening, which irony of ironies, will now see Abbott and his crew add to the mountain of debt in their second budget in the hopes of buying an election.

      The pond has decided that handing out rewards and gongs is the way forward for all those who do valiant service and suffer in battle. But who will be honoured as Warden of the Cinque Ports?

    2. Downer deserves the Knight of the Garter.

    3. We declare that Mr The Right Honourable Tony Abbott esq. shall henceforth be awarded the singular honour of being Groom of the Stool.

      HRH Elizabeth,
      Buck House


    4. Menzies was privileged with the honour in July 1966 after his retirement but he was more than peeved with the cost of the uniform:

      “He seems to have paid for his regalia himself and, because the library has not only the regalia but also the itemised invoice of the tailor who made it, we know precisely how much Sir Robert was ‘browned off’ about.

      Ede & Ravenscroft, London’s oldest tailor (founded in 1689), had put the magnificent costume together for, in those days, the breathtaking cost of £367, seven shillings and fivepence’

      Sir Robert was the first Lord Warden ever to come from anywhere but England and the gift of the ancient office seems to have been Her Majesty’s reward for a loyal Australian man who, famously, described himself as ‘British to the bootstraps”.


      If the occasion arises the money-grabbing and ass-kissing Abbott can always dryclean Menzies uniform.

  2. As usual, DP, your summary is much more entertaining than the Real (?) Thing.

    In a fit of insanity, I forced myself to watch Tone's Big Speech yesterday - gawd knows why. Did I really expect it to be anything more than then usual blather that we got? At least I was reading a trashy novel at the same time, so it wasn't a total loss of an hour.

    But the worst part for me was the questions afterwards. Farrrrkkk, most of those journos were frickin’ TERRIBLE!!!!!!!! Soft questions, or rambling, uncertain “if you don’t mind, please sir, sorta.." comments that might have had a question buried somewhere inside them. Pathetic. Even those who tried - like Lenore Taylor - were bloody incoherent. As a friend of mine commented to me, "by the time Laura Tingle finished her question -and even though it was self-evidently critical of the little twat - I’d almost lost the will to live".

    And Michelle Grattan - that was just really very sad. Can’t the old journos' home just lock her door to stop her wandering off, and preserve some dignity for her? Please?

    The best question - and one that I’d really hoped would be asked - was from that Channel 7 bloke, Mark Riley, who reeled off all the occasions on which Tones had promised to be “more consultative” - but obviously hadn’t.

    But the rest? Christ, they pay these clowns for this? No wonder the MSM are in the toilet - they’re hopeless.

    1. An impeccable summary of the journos and their wittering questions Anon! And give yourself a purple star for wounds suffered in battle watching the whole damn thing (the pond has already knighted itself, don't ya know).

    2. Yes , a special gong for Mark Riley who had tallied up 15 times in recent years that Abbott had promised to be
      ' collegiate & consultative ' , Ho Hum !!

      I too must own up to having watched the whole speech but in all honesty can't award myself a purple star as I took the cowards way out when I just couldn't stomach the wimps and their wimpy questions . If they're too frightened to do their jobs why dont they just f...k off and write greeting cards or advertising material or lie on the sand and count the bloody waves FFS.

  3. You have excelled as usual DP,
    Maybe Andrew Laming and Warren Entsch should be knighted for an act of decency.

  4. Abbott's idiocy and incompetency can best be seen in this line: "Our problem is not that taxes are too low; our problem is that government spending is too high."

    Until he realises this is a complete untruth, and in fact its pursuit is damaging the country's economy, then he is on a hiding to nothing.

  5. If ever there was a tragic failing in the psyche of that juggernaught of liberated youth, my youth ; The Baby Boomers.., the like of which is still writing for the majority of MSM. outlets..is not realising that it is time to stop dropping the acid!...Carlos Castenada was a bullshit artist..just like T. Lobsang Rampa...get over it !

  6. Abbott again referred to the legacy of Margaret Thatcher as being an inspiration to him.

    Telling perhaps, when documents have just been released showing her attempts to cover up a paedophile sex scandal involving one of the UK's senior diplomats.

    Judas Priest!


  7. DP - probably the best summary of Bishop and Turnbull's faint praise of Abbott and refusing to promise they won't challenge is Thurber's 1932 cartoon in The New Yorker 'Touche!'


  8. "Did you ask her not to challenge and did she refuse?" asked Sunrise host David Koch.

    "I think people find all that insider Canberra stuff so boring," Mr Abbott said.

    "Did you ask her not to challenge and did she refuse?" Koch asked again.

    "I meet with Julie Bishop all the time…the public elected me as Prime Minister to end Labor's mess. We're not going to go back to the chaos of the Labor days," Mr Abbott replied.

    Memory loss is not a good sign. He should have said “we said before the election that we would scrap the carbon tax, we would stop the boats, we would build the roads of the 21st century and we would get the budget back under control”

  9. Michael Brissenden of ABC reports:

    “Industry Minister Ian Macfarlane says the Queensland election result is all about the targeting of Campbell Newman by the Labor Party and that it shows any government with a reform agenda is vulnerable to attack. Mr Macfarlane says it would be helpful if Julie Bishop and Malcolm Turnbull were to rule out challenging for the leadership so that the party can get on with the business of governing.”

    In other words, the leadership challenge is on.

  10. Thanks again DP for the laughs and the groans. Your daily dose seems to bring on groaning laughter or laughing groans.

    But I am hyperventilating at Shansham's suggest that Pyne may emerge as a compromise candidate. Well that would be a turn up. I must say I am a feared that S Morrison may head butt his way out of the scrum.

    At the moment though it is like watching a production of the Mousetrap with a new cast. Abbott is playing Julia. Julie is an impeccable Rudd, tweeting on cue. I think Malcolm may be directing. The News Ltd bit players continue to play the roles which brought the house down in 2013.

    The audience though is getting bolsie and is now throwing Jaffas. We all know the ending.

    Miss pp

  11. DP - "That's schizophrenia for you. Celebrating the voters and then berating them as absent-minded donkeys ..."

    Nope. Two misconceptions in there.

  12. "The bromancer is back in the tent, praising his proud and courageous friend, and offering hope to all:

    A new Liberal leader would have to confront exactly the same underlying political reality. And he — or she — would do so presiding over the rabble of a shattered and hopelessly divided party..."

    And he (or she) would take up the old tune like so:

    heaven loves ya
    the clouds smile for ya
    nothing stands in
    your way when you're
    a boy ...

    boys keep swinging
    boys always work it out
    unpage the colors
    unfurl the flag
    love just kissed you
    hello when you're a

  13. I thought that the Bromancer was supposedly the Government Gazette's Foreign Affairs writer. If so, then how come most of his journalistic efforts these days seem to be penning billet-doux to Tones?

    That's a rhetorical question, of course.

    Come to think of it, just what qualifies the Bro as a Foreign Affairs expert anyway, other than soaking up Bob Santamaria's world-view in his youth and spending the next few decades proclaiming "I am an expert on Foreign Affairs!"?

    Another rhetorical question, of course......


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