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Barnaby Joyce is an idiot

There are so many things that come to mind with that headline – like when Barnaby Joyce wrote off an $80,000 government Toyota LandCruiser wagon by driving it into a flooded creek on the way to his northern NSW grazing property. Or when he had unprotected extramarital sex with a staffer and got her pregnant. Or when he turned up drunk at work. Those are the sort of personal lapses of judgement you worry about with teenage kids.

Of far more concern is Barnaby’s full speed ahead, “get ‘er done” approach to infrastructure, be it the NBN, dams, or inland rail. These are all major projects that require significant planning to get them right but Barnaby gets annoyed with that sort of trivial impediment to his announcements.

In June 2016, Joyce appeared on Q&A where he said the majority of people only wanted 25mbps download speed and fibre to the premises NBN would be a waste.

“We have to try and always do things within our means to repay the debt that we have and that, unfortunately, is the raw rule of economics, trying to do as much as we can to make sure we run a tight ship,” said Barnaby.

Joyce added that returning to Labor’s FTTP version of the NBN would cost the Government an extra $30 billion and take six to eight years longer to deploy than the Coalition’s Multi-Technology Mix version of the NBN – a claim that has proven to be false.

With the government’s MTM $27 billion over budget and four years behind schedule, they finally announced an extra $4.5 billion to upgrade to FttP that “will give up to 75 per cent of fixed line premises across regional and metropolitan Australia access to ultra-fast broadband by 2023”… maybe.

The concept of “do it once and do it right” was lost on the LNP who thought the internet was for playing games and watching movies.

Now Barnaby is insisting that we spend more than $600,000 to provide a single fibre connection to a business in his electorate. In his letter requesting government funding, Joyce said the upgrade was “urgently needed to address the continued increases in bandwidth required at Costa’s Guyra facilities for the many software and online systems utilised to support the company’s high-tech practices and equipment used to achieve greater yield efficiencies”.

Bugger the little people who can’t access their emails or whose kids can’t sign in for online learning.

Barnaby brings this same level of foresight and planning to his fetish for building dams.

After drip feeding millions to an LNP donor and party operative, through various companies that all lead back to the same guy, for feasibility studies and business cases, Barnaby is sick of waiting and announced $5.4 billion in funding.

“We’ve done the homework on Hells Gates Dam and it’s now time to get on and build it. We have put our money on the table, so let’s cut the green tape, get the approvals and get it done.”

The dam proposals have not been scrutinised by the government’s own National Water Grid advisory board; the Hells Gates plan does not have an environmental impact study (no study is even in development); nor does it have a detailed business case.

So far, Barnaby wants dams to deal with droughts, requiring them to be full, floods, requiring them to be empty, and hydro-electricity, requiring them to be flowing. I’m not sure how he hopes to achieve that.

Joyce is also in a rush to get his pet boondoggle, the inland rail, underway. Four years after the project – worth $14.5bn and counting – was announced, about 130km of trach have been laid and we still don’t know the final route.

As reported in the Guardian:

“Some of those communities that will be most affected by the project are raising serious questions about who will really benefit from the massive outlay: big business or local towns?

Regional farmers have expressed alarm as their land is cut in two by the tracks and they question why local landscape knowledge has been ignored, particularly when it comes to flood risk.”

Sounds like another Joyce disaster in the making.

Barnaby likes to boast to the guys in the front bar that he can blackmail the government into giving him what he wants.

“We’ve taken water and put it back into agriculture so we can look after you and make sure we don’t have the greenies running the show basically sending you out the back door. That was a hard ask but we did it,” he told farmers at a Shepparton pub, saying an ABC Four Corners investigation into alleged water rorting in the Murray Darling Basin was trying to “create a calamity” from which Barnaby would save them.

At the time, the South Australian Water Minister Ian Hunter called for Joyce’s removal.

“He is absolutely incapable of doing the job he has been given,” he said.

I can only concur. Barnaby should never be put in a position of responsibility – he’s a very expensive idiot.


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  1. GL

    On a side note: Got this from a friend a few minutes ago. Danish road safety council message. Hilarious.

  2. Phil Pryor

    We could discuss whether B Joyce is a complete idiot, or is it incomplete? Has he or hasn’t he the brains of a sheep? Has he a special alarm clock so he can get up himself in the morning? The current version of the country party is not very national, and its regional approach is untrustworthy, as farmer, graziers, horticulturalists, townsfolk are betrayed by professional and corporate interests, many overseas, and with slimy recruits from the old ranks getting snouts into troughs, a la Anderson, Vaile, etc. Australia is very urbanised, and one conservative group embraces finance, investment, speculation,. media, money, controls in planning and organisation.., while another is a representative historically of fights for wages, conditions, amenities, health, education, leisure. Many rural people are thus bemused, confused, misled, rented, compromised, loyal enough, betrayed often, seekers of something for the district. Districts very often are wiped of banks, police, schools, services, futures. The weather worried Hanrahan; what would he do now to contemplate policy on climate? This land has been bashed and bullied by its self proclaimed managers. It must stop and types like Joyce and past leaders of the country party now grubbing up fortunes from white anting and betrayal must also be gone, never to return. Earl Page and Artie Fadden would sneer and be sickened by the decline under the Anthony disease and its consequences.

  3. Jack Cade

    Actually, the late Shane Warne was a sporting version of Barney Rubble… and Aussies adored him for much the same reasons as Joyce’s constituents elect Joyce. It is interesting the fuss made of Warne when a much more deserving Rod Marsh was farewelled with less fanfare and more dignity.

  4. Kaye Lee

    Warnie was good at his job – unlike Bananababy

    I don’t think Marsh ever wanted the celebrity treatment. He was a fine cricketer and did a lot to help the later generations in the sport. I was horrified when he retired being so used to him behind the stumps.

  5. Max Gross

    Few would argue that Bananaby isn’t an idiot but then again SOMEBODY keeps voting for him!

  6. TwainandHume

    Phil Pryor, very well stated and observed. As voters, people should follow, at the very least, the underlying philosophy of a political group as their lodestone … single issues and last-minute personalities only being taken into the mix when considering true Independents. To be bamboozled to vote for a local representative (discounting what the long-term, historical overall party stance may be) is a recipe for continued problems such as are seen now. A situation resulting from ordinary voters voting against their own best interests and the best interesting of the majority of the country. Think their would be better outcomes IF that lodestone was held closely to the chest … and a focus kept on “following the money”.

  7. GL

    The only thing missing from Bananabay is the sign around his neck, “Buy me alcohol and put brown envelopes in my pocket and I’m yours for life.”

  8. Chris Leyland

    One thing is very obvious in politics, Most are in it for THEMSELVES! Even if they do things for their constituents, they are usually rewarded in some way. Bananaby is no exception, he has no accountability, bends the situation to suit himself, and claims some reward.
    He ignores science, recommendations, and reviews and admits to going with his gut… which worked so well for him in that “Government” Land Cruiser, with no consequences for bad judgment! He just got another one… despite his lack of judgment! Yet he lets his constituents languish, giving excuses, rather than delivering – while playing with the big boys and receiving rewards. I clearly do not understand how some of these people remain in office…because the people who vote them in are reasonably intelligent… maybe it just comes down to brand loyalty… the “ol Ford Vs Holden mentality.. No one is better than my brand! Stupidity really, they all have pros … and cons, but no one wants to shake the tree… Earthquake PLEASE

  9. Peter F

    I have often driven the Newell from Victoria to Queensland,most recently since the beginning of February, and have been surprised at the obvious work involved in upgrading the line which IS part of the supposed ‘Inland railway’. I wonder how much of this is to convince voters that it is a done thing and. soon to show benefits. The mere fact that it cannot go north of the Qld border without serious negotiations. There is massive opposition around Millmerran for a start.

  10. pierre wilkinson

    Although no one in their right mind would dispute the statement that Barnaby is an idiot, it lends itself to the question, “what of the voters who encouraged him?”

  11. Terence Mills

    When Barnaby returned to the position as Deputy Prime Minister he more than doubled his pay to $433,575 a year.

    As a backbencher he was only on $211,500 and as he let us know several times he was maintaining two families. He conceded that this salary was nothing to complain about, but with four daughters from his first marriage to help support and his new partner and two young boys, it was harder than it might appear for the former small town accountant. “It’s not that I’m not getting money, it’s just that it’s spread so thin,” he said. “You’re on $211,000 a year for God’s sake. I get that. But it’s not just for me. I split it, I cover all my responsibilities and then you live with what you’ve got left”.

    Our hearts went out to him , nobody should have to try and get by on $4000 a week and still root around.

    Of course the salary is only part of it : they get an accommodation allowance of $291 a night when in Canberra – many actually by a house or an apartment frequently in their spouse’s name and pay that allowance to their partner AND their partner can claim a negative gearing tax benefit if the rent doesn’t cover all outgoings.

    Then you have the Comcar, the electorate allowance and any number of rorts on the side.

    So, is Barnaby the idiot or are we ?

  12. New England Cocky

    This quote says it all for New England thinking voters:

    “At the time, the South Australian Water Minister Ian Hunter called for Joyce’s removal.

    “He is absolutely incapable of doing the job he has been given,” he said.

    I can only concur. Barnaby should never be put in a position of responsibility – he’s a very expensive idiot.”

    With all the COALiiton rorts going on during this term of misgovernment, very little if anything has gone into New England The reason is very simple; the unelected political hacks of the Nazional$ do NOT waste good taxpayers money trying to buying an electorate that desperately wants to return to the 19th century within the next 22 years.

  13. Kaye Lee

    It should be pointed out that Barnaby’s partner Vicki has shares in the business that we are paying to upgrade NBN connection for. Apparently that’s ok?

  14. Gangey1959

    I have heard from a reliable source that Akubra have relesed a new range of hats to celebrate banarnabys contributions to Planet Earth. The hats are made from recycled Alfoil, and have a well styled vent in their crown to release any hot air that may develop inside. They have a VERY wide brim, the underside of which is coloured to reduce any redness in the face of the wearer during photographic shoots. Propsals for naming the new range include “Beetrooter”, and “ReJoyce”.
    They are currently being market tested in the price range of somewhere between somewhereovertherainbow and buggermethatsalot. A company spkesperson, who refused to give their name or company position, explained thatwith an calculated small market requirement what else could any prospective purchaser expect?
    “At least they are not the same cost as our new nucular “Dud-one” range” was their final comment.

  15. Stephengb

    Barnaby Joyce us not an idiot, he is a damn sight richer than you or I will ever be and will retire on a fat pension for life, plus some very generous perks.

    So who is the idiot ?

  16. Kaye Lee

    Being rich doesn’t make you smart – Gina Rinehart and James Packer are testament to that.

  17. Chris Leyland

    The point that you make, confirms that the Political system is rigged and smart people don’t necessarily need intelligence. I wouldn’t want to be in Politics, you would need to be either really good, or really stupid… Drive your $80k LandCruiser into deep water, despite obvious signs of failure…. better go to Specsavers…( or the alternative is Stupid)

  18. GL

    With an election looming this put the frighteners up Scummo and crew. As soon as the minister said to Bananababy, “”I told him that the media was waiting outside the office, and as courtesy I was letting him know as my leader that I was going to resign from cabinet,” he said.” and when Scummo found out the money has now magically appeared in the budget.

  19. TuffGuy

    The real idiots are those that vote for Barnyard. They are clearly voting with acceptance of his incompetence.

  20. leefe

    Dunno. Can you really be such an idiot and survive in politics for so long?

    (rhetorical question. obviously having friends – or extortion targets – in high places is all it takes)

  21. leefe

    ps: Salute of solidarity to fellow fans of Bacchus. That’s a part of my youth gone forever.

  22. Terence Mills


    I dips me lid to Veteran Affairs minister Andrew Gee.

    They tried to dud him over funding for veterans and he stood up to them and he won : good on him !

    Cheeky possum Morrison dismisses it by saying that Gee was new to the ministry and didn’t know how things worked when it comes to funding appropriations.

    Bullshit ! Andrew Gee knew precisely how the system worked and he knew that if he didn’t get a budget allocation for veterans affairs before the budget is delivered, he would be whistling Dixie after the budget.

    How about that, a man of principle in the Nationals – he won’t last long !

  23. Kaye Lee


    He just got a “commitment” – it appears he was too late for the budget.

    “Mr Gee said the “budget process” had closed ahead of the Tuesday economic plan being revealed by Treasurer Josh Frydenberg.

    But he said he had a commitment from Mr Joyce and Prime Minister Scott Morrison that the money would be allocated to the program, even if only a part of it appeared in the budget papers.”

  24. Michael Taylor

    I’m struggling to find a bigger idiot in our government than Barnaby Joyce. It’s a hard position to fill, but credit to him for leading the pack.

  25. Canguro

    re. the bigger idiot, yes, Joyce seems to be the obvious winner, but Scummo’s a close contender; I note that he’ s refused to meet with the new Chinese ambassador; you’d think after trashing billions in Australian export dollars earned via sales to China – barley, wine, meat, coal – he’d perhaps be interested in repairing the damage done, but no, he’ll wait for Xi Jinping’s apology and belated recognition of his (Scummos’) worthiness in the diplomatic scheme of things. What a fuckwit royale. Too bad Australia, it’s all about me!

  26. Terence Mills

    Thanks Kaye

    It appears that when Gee realized they were not going to respond to his requests for additional veterans funding in the budget, he called their bluff and threatened to very publicly resign.

    The additional money now committed is coming from a contingency fund and they wouldn’t dare try and dud him again but it will be interesting to see how Josh handles this in the budget speech.

    Andrew Gee will at least be able to look veterans and his electorate in the eye : I like that in a politician.

  27. Ken Fabian

    A lot of rural voters see any media mockery of Mr Joyce’s rural “idiosyncrasies” as mockery of them. The bumbling bushie thing may not always be accidental or a mistake – it may be feature as much as flaw. What is certain is that no-one else could take a free personal overseas trip in a political donor’s luxury private jet and call it “saving the taxpayer’s money” and get away with it – mainstream media treated it like a joke so he got away with it.

  28. Terence Mills


    Joyce is an accountant who poses as a bushie : the bumbling incompetence seems to be genuine, though.

  29. GL

    That’s just ridiculous. I wanted to have a look at Insniders, um, Insiders, and it was a case of, “Oh, you want to watch this program do you? You must sign up for an ABC account.” Ugh. So I thought I’ll try Four Corners only to discover that I don’t need an ABC account to watch it. What the hell?

    How long Four Corners lasts before requiring an account for viewing, well…

  30. Kaye Lee

    Remember when Warren Truss was Nationals leader and Barnaby was jostling to get his job ……

    January 2016: Penny Wong scoffs at ‘entertaining but erratic’ Barnaby Joyce leading National party.

    Wong labelled Joyce, who has reiterated his desire to become the next leader of the National party, “entertaining but erratic”.

    “He simply doesn’t have the sober and sensible approach to public policy that Australians expect from the holders of high office,” Wong said. “Even Barnaby’s own colleagues are worried about him taking on this role.”

    “We all remember Barnaby being shadow finance minister. That was certainly entertaining, but if he can’t hold down that job, I don’t know how you hold down the deputy prime ministership,” Wong said.

  31. Terence Mills

    “Barnaby Joyce is the Whoopee Cushion of Australian politics.”………………. Albo.

  32. Michael Taylor

    Terry, the branch of the department I worked in when a public servant was having a friendly competition (I can’t remember what), but for a bit of fun we had to name each team after an idiot. My director came up with “Team Barnaby” for our team. I can still remember the smile on his face when he announced it.

    It was in Joyce’s first year in politics. He clearly made an immediate impact in the public service: from Day 1 we thought he was a goose.

  33. New England Cocky

    @ Ken Fabian: A sensible observation, repeated by Gabrielle Chan in her recent book, ”Rusted Off” describing how regional Australia is FINALLY learning the Tony Windsor political wisdom of ”regional electorates have the numbers to control Parliament provided they work together and participate in politics.”

    @Terence Mills: A bit confused here TM. Beetrooter is a self-serving confessed adulterer, practising alcoholic, sexually harassing, corrupt, fornicating misogynist who has made a fortune being played by senior Nazional$ figures.

    IMHO, having unfortunately met the person, he is NOT GOOD ENOUGH to represent either me, or other voters of New England at anything, and must personally bear much of the responsibility for New England slowly becoming a rural slum.

  34. Rob

    GL, I don’t know much but a look into ‘Automatic Content Recognition’ (ACR) and the tracking of viewer activity gives a hint.
    This from wizcase-com website:
    “Smart TVs collect your data . . . from streaming services and regular TV shows, to DVDs and Blu-Rays. . . Your smart TV collects this data and sends it either to the manufacturer or to one of its business partners. ACR does have a legitimate use . . . But smart TV manufacturers also sell this data to marketers.”
    Looks like the ABC wants a piece of the action also, thus the sign-in request. This is either for their own ‘non-commercial’ benefit or on behalf of a govt request for info. Either way, prats. I might start leaving the tv on dumb arse shows like Googlebox and The Virus.

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