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Believe Me, I Know The Difference Between Satire And Reality!

A number of people commented on yesterday’s This is How Tony Got Elected expressing the idea that the pictures were from a satiric site “Why I’m Voting Liberal” and that I’d mistaken a satiric post for real actual Liberal voters.

Now I am aware that people have sometimes taken made-up quotes from my writing as genuine, even when they’ve clearly been satiric. Even when I’ve used clearly fictional names and characters like “Hoe Jockey”, “Tiny Habit”, “Arnie (I’m not sexist) Corperson”, “The Speaker: Dolores Umbridge” or “Christopher Pyne”. Even when their behaviour has been so outrageous, so unbelievable that surely, surely nobody could confuse them with the actual Liberal Party. (Although there have been a couple of times that the Libs have adopted my satire as their actual policy a few days later – makes me wonder whether all those jobs Abbott created for monitoring social media are actually just searching for new policy ideas.)

Anyway, I always try to be careful not confuse what Liberals are actually doing and saying with attempts to make them look ridiculous through exaggeration. Admittedly, Abbott, Brandis, Pyne and others make this an almost impossible task sometimes. But, in this case, the photos weren’t taken from the site that wasn’t serious. I went back and checked the site’s description. It asked for people under 30 to post reasons that they were voting Liberal. I copied its description to show to someone who assured me that the site wasn’t serious:

“Under 30?
Voting Liberal on September 7th?
Tell the country why!

We’re young people who care about our future and opportunities. We care about the economy. We care about what jobs there will be for us in the future. We care about good, sustainable and forward-thinking government. We want real change.

I’m Voting Liberal is a campaign for young Australians.

Get involved! Get together with your friends and send photos to: or message them to this page.”

And I found the other site – the satiric one. Yes, it is hard to tell what’s satire and what’s not these days. I mean, how do you caricature Andrew Bolt or Alan Jones? And yes, if that description hadn’t been written before the election, one might easily think that it, too, was purely a send-up of the Liberal’s Real Solutions document.

So yesterday I added the following P.S. to the article.

P.S. Just to clear up some confustion, this is a genuine site and not the parody site.

Update at 8pm. The site seems to have disappeared in the last couple of hours and that link no longer works.


If you’ve just clicked on the link. Yep, that’s right. It no longer exists.

Given that there seems to have been no updates to the pictures since the election, it does seem a strange coincidence that the day “This Is How Tony Got Elected” appears that within a few hours, the site disappears, leaving no evidence that these people once cared about “good, sustainable and forward-thinking government”.

Well, this is hardly shades of 1984. I mean, I don’t even know that there was a direct connection to the Liberal Party it may have just been created by a group of concerned young citizens determined to create a stronger economy led by someone who wears speedos and can do a pull-up.

Whatever, it’s gone, and if that’s because of what I wrote yesterday then I’ll need to be careful what I write in future.

I mean, imagine if I wrote about Tony Abbott, and he was gone the next day.

Labor supporters would never forgive me.


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  1. Peter f

    “I mean, imagine if I wrote about Tony Abbott,and he was gone the next day.”

    I do love an optimist.

  2. rossleighbrisbane

    Yes, but it WOULD put a serious dent in Labor’s reelection chances and some people I know would be very annoyed at me for that!

  3. Kaye Lee

    Very interesting that you are being watched rossleigh. That was too much of a coincidence to conclude otherwise. Also interesting that the owners of the page no longer want those photos seen – can’t blame them really and if they have had a change of heart then we can only encourage them.

    I have found the same thing. I click on links to articles and they have disappeared. Videos have “expired”. Abbott got rid of a lot of his speeches and media statements – it must have been hell for PhonyTonyAbbott who had links to them all but they can still usually be found if you look hard enough.

  4. CMMC

    ‘Christopher Pyne’, what a silly, made-up name….sounds like something Dickens would use for a bank clerk.

  5. Ricardo29

    At least we’ve still got your post of the previous day with its selection of shallow thinking ‘ concerned young citizens’ , so how to embarrass them more widely?

  6. Ruth Lipscombe

    “I mean,imagine if I wrote about Tony Abbott and he was gone the next day”.
    I would love you forever —-and beyond!
    The heir apparents are morons as well and while a new leader might help the LNP limp along to the next election surely WE are not moronic enough to re elect the party.
    I think I could cope (temporarily) with anybody else in the PM’s slot but Grabbit Abbott is beyond the pale!

  7. MarkH

    There is enough that the Liberal do themselves that is it’s own self parody to a degree…..seriously.

    I’ve never thought you were someone who couldn’t tell the different from the satirical to the genuine anyway Rossleigh…

  8. Terry2

    In Orwell’s 1984 , Winston Smith worked in the Ministry of Truth which :

    “laid down the lines of policy which made it necessary that this fragment of
    the past should be preserved, that one falsified, and the other rubbed out of existence”

  9. John Fraser


    All across the board Abbott is being whitewashed.

    Pretty soon he will be more popular than god.

    And if he isn't then expect your front door to be kicked in and body armoured AFP screaming get on the floor.

    A militarised Australia.

    And i’m still extremely disappointed that no young Liberal carried a placard extorting Aussies to vote for Abbott for a 3 virgin reward.

    Definitely “extorting” !

  10. Miriam English

    Some years ago I had read on the web the results of a government funded study into the cost of various power sources. Nuclear came out really badly as extremely expensive. Later, the government (I think it might have been just the Queensland govt) was interested in building a nuclear power plant and published figures for the economics of the various kinds of power sources in which nuclear had come out as one of the cheapest, and most economical. I thought this was weird. I’d saved the link to the earlier study so I went back for another look and found it had been quietly removed. Luckily the Internet Archive Project exists though, and I was able to use it to find a copy of the original page, so I wrote about it in my blog and told everyone I met of the perversion of truth going on in the name of promoting nuclear power.

    Unfortunately, the Internet Archive doesn’t seem to store facebook pages. I couldn’t find the “ImVotingLiberal” pages there. I suspect they weren’t genuine pages, but were constructed by a party hack, just like the Tony Abbott facebook page that got most of its likes from India — obviously paid for. This is a dirty party using all the dirty tricks it can to boost its flagging popularity.

  11. eli nes

    it shows brandis is more than metadata and his people read the AIM (If only mark dreyfus would follow their lead, labor may decide the boys robb, brandis, pyne and morrison are worth a ‘ridicule’ or two????)
    Happily, I voted liberal because a 40% target for women was ridiculous and I was right. The minister for women has apportioned 25% of appointees to the fair sex, despite his belief in merit, which maintains a manageable 90%+ male occupancy in cabinet. Such numbers give the lie to misogyny and confirms his commitment to positive action.

  12. Phi

    Nice work Rossleigh – could the systematic white-washing of Abbott and Co signal panic in the LNP camp?.

    On a slightly different but still relevant note, independent world news sites are reporting a significant chance of progressive left parties gaining power in Spain and Greece – two nations that have been demoralised, gutted and privatised by the EU, IMF et al via the failed ‘austerity’ approach of neo-conservativism.

    The Abbott led LNP is the political arm of predatory capitalism and nothing will change that outlook until they are routed at the polls.

  13. Keitha Granville

    “I mean, imagine if I wrote about Tony Abbott, and he was gone the next day.”
    Please tell me that’s possible, for someone,somehow, somewhere.

  14. Florence nee Fedup

    Listening to what this mob says, is indistinguishable from black humour or comedy. It is impossible to take them seriously. This is of concern, as they are deadly serious, obsessed with putting in place, their vision for Australia. Not one that many want.

  15. Carol Taylor

    Regarding the “militarisation” @ John Fraser. Am I perceiving that Abbott isn’t getting many bangs for his bucks on this? It’s a pattern of behaviour – previously whenever Tony made a faux pas which is on a fairly regular basis, the msm was suddenly awash with stories about “illegals” aka asylum seekers which advisers knew was a subject where Tony was a winner, this also being utilized as a major distraction for whatever nasties the government had just tried to sneak in.

    That is now over, apart from a few ‘bleeding hearts’ carrying on about things such as inhumane/Australia’s reputation is trashed, the job is done, mission accomplished (at what human cost is another thing entirely). So what now when Tony and cronies manage so many stuff ups? It requires another issue which advisers perceive is a winner for Tony. The military of course. As stated, Tony is “a man’s man” (quietly gags), none of this namby-pambly intellectual Bill Shorten stuff, go for what appeals to the major demographic..blood and guts and aggression.

  16. Carol Taylor

    Florence, one this morning which unfortunately came from a former Labor mp (via, was that it should be made compulsory that all dole recipients should be using contraception – this seems aimed primarily at large Aboriginal and TSI families. Clearly, the argument runs that if you’re not using contraception you can’t be serious about looking for work but prefer to have babies at government expense.

    However, I do hope that the theory applies to men as well as women, in fact perhaps all male recipients could be chemically castrated for the term that they remain on the dole.

  17. John Fraser


    @Carol Taylor

    Here in Qld my perception of Murdochs publication is that they see that the polling is not changing and are starting to hedge their bets.

    It wouldn't do for them to go down swinging with Abbott.

    Just subtle changes ….. so they can point to them in the future.
    (reminiscent of the pre Fitzgerald days … when that same publication put a junior journalist to write stories about gambling and brothels when even high school students could point out those establishments and then start blowing their trumpet about how they "uncovered" corruption in the Midnight State).

    Of course they will continue with the "lone wolf" and "death cult" jingoism ….. its in their owners DNA.

    This is good Journalism/Opinion :

  18. John Kelly

    Shame on you, Rossleigh. You have interfered with the primal forces of censorship and forced otherwise deluded people to reassess their priorities. Jeez, I wish I could have done that!

  19. stephentardrew


    As an experiment could you write about yourself and then we can see if you disappear and if you come back then did you disappear and like a tree in the forest was there any sound and if so what is the sound of silence?

    Nothing like experimental methodology to prove a point.

  20. Kerri

    Seriously though! I once joined a facebook page, about a year ago called 1,000,000 strong against Andrew Bolt. There were administration and troll issues and the bulk of the posts/discussion was about Abbott anyway so a group broke off to form 1,000,000 strong against Tony Abbott. A closed group. About 6 months ago it disappeared! Totally!!
    The woman who administered the group was still online and so were many of the regular posters, but did a bit of stalking and no sign of their posts to 1,000,000 strong on any of their pages???? It was all quite odd. I am no intenet whiz but I wonder what happened? It was around the time Brandis was bringing in his laws to jail journos who bad mouth the government. Can anyone offer me an explaination or did 1,000,000 strong fly too close to the sun???

  21. DanDark

    The night Mars08 put that FB link up, I went and had a look
    It was up and working but hadn’t had any comments since 2013
    and only a few likes, I didn’t bother writing anything because
    every time I leave a message on Tones FB page it disappears after a few hours
    mars said he left a message on that FB page and now its disappeared
    They can run but they cant hide for ever the LIBS 🙂

  22. diannaart


    Writing satire only to have it plagiarized regularly as real policy by the LNP is getting really annoying, isn’t it? I did leave a comment on the REAL Voting Liberal F/B site – “To all the young Libs, how are you going with Tony’s unsurprising government and all the promises he’s kept?” – I could not find this comment after posting, was expecting to at least having such a comment deleted, but it never seemed to have been posted at all – despite FB behaving normally.

    Now you tell me the Young Libs FB site has disappeared – very strange, maybe we just had a collective dream about the entire thing – I mean that’s as likely as the LNP developing inclusive policies for the benefit and welfare of all Australians, right?

    Maybe you can help with the following comment left by one of your fans above:

    eli nesDecember 30, 2014 at 10:28 am

    it shows brandis is more than metadata and his people read the AIM (If only mark dreyfus would follow their lead, labor may decide the boys robb, brandis, pyne and morrison are worth a ‘ridicule’ or two????)
    Happily, I voted liberal because a 40% target for women was ridiculous and I was right. The minister for women has apportioned 25% of appointees to the fair sex, despite his belief in merit, which maintains a manageable 90%+ male occupancy in cabinet. Such numbers give the lie to misogyny and confirms his commitment to positive action.

    Serious or satire?

  23. Kaye Lee

    ” It requires another issue which advisers perceive is a winner for Tony.”

    The Abbott government’s diligence in clearing its emergency in-tray has led to an huge increase in the workload of the National Security Committee and also a diminution of its function, as the elite committee shifts from making strategic policy to managing responses.

    In May, Abbott and Bishop shifted their focus from locating the Malaysia Airlines aircraft to monitoring the conquests of Islamic State, especially the movement of “foreign fighters” to and from that conflict. In July, they devoted even more time and energy to hold Putin’s Russia to account and rally a global response to yet another aviation disaster: the downing of MH17 over Ukraine.

    Since then, Abbott and his senior ministers have maintained their laser focus on international events, albeit with diminishing returns. In September, Abbott sent Australian Defence Force personnel back to war in Iraq. Since December 15 he has been forcefully and prominently demanding answers in relation to the cafe siege in Martin Place. On Sunday, when the AirAsia aircraft vanished without any Australians known to be on board, Tony Abbott and Julie Bishop were among the first leaders to comment publicly and provide assistance, with a RAAF AP-3C Orion being dispatched to join the Indonesian-led search on Monday.

    “Anything that’s happened this year, from the Malaysia Airlines disappearance to Martin Place, has been referred to the NSC,” says Gyngell, now an adjunct professor at the Crawford School at the Australian National University. “There’s been an awful lot of meetings, it’s been essentially reactive, and it means that the government’s most precious commodity – the Prime Minister’s time – has been spent in lengthy meetings reviewing responses to events to which the policy dimensions are not especially complex.”

  24. Rossleigh

    So, as I read the article, they perceive that they’re on a winner when they’re reacting to some unforeseen emergency, even though they don’t seem to have achieved their aims in any of them. Is that about it, Kaye Lee?

  25. Kaye Lee


    “The number of women on government boards has slipped below the 40 per cent target and a new report says men made up 75 per cent of new appointees within Tony Abbott’s own Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet this year.”


    Yep, that about sums it up. Our PM and FM are spending all their time in meetings with the NSC about downed planes instead of discussing policy about our place in Asia and globally.

  26. silkworm

    The Libs go to some expense to cover up their embarrassing past. But nothing is ever lost on the interwebs, no? Wouldn’t the left benefit from compiling all these items into one easily accessible resource site?

  27. diannaart

    Kaye Lee

    I thought the comment by eli nes was possibly satire. Did you read his/her comment? I am aware that female representation is lower across the business political spectrum and getting worse..

    I seem to be having a day of being completely misunderstood.

  28. corvus boreus

    The clean-up crew removed the imvotingliberal site sometime late Sunsday arvo.
    The site seems to have been the work of a young liberal, Matthew L, who likely rounded up a small bunch of fellow ‘young conservatives’ to pose with some slogans on a whiteboard, then invited other submissions on social media. They had about 1500 likes and a few outside posts that had other people with similar drivel on different boards(including LOL-cats with punny signs [OMFG! PMSROFLMAO!{!!!}]). Matthew had harsh words about intellectual property rights with the architects of the satirical sight. I suspect Matthew L will probably grow up to be an LNP staffer or an IPA shill.

    Regarding the fact that active censorship of compromising or detrimental record of Abbott and co seems to be occurring, I reckon that means it is a good idea to independently document incidences of ‘regrettable’ conduct and statements as they occur, because, sure as shinola, the Abbott regime has people currently pursuing an active policy of erasing and expunging as much of the existing record of the documented foolishness and fallacies of Tony Abbott as possible.

    On the broader, I am increasingly disturbed by the coalescence of powers to both increase surveillance of the population and remove transparency of their own behaviors. I can see a situation developing where draconian laws of censorship may be used to protect our public officials from investigation of dubious conduct.

  29. Kaye Lee

    When Joe Hockey ran for leadership of the Liberal Party he ruined his chances by calling for a conscience vote on an ETS. He did this partly to appease all factions but mainly because “he supported an ETS and his staff had handed him 17 pages of public records where he had publicly declared as much.” One wonders if they still exist.

  30. Graham Houghton

    There are several sites where the lunacies of the LNP and its constituent members are being archived – has nearly reached 500 signatures, please help us to reach 1000 before the New Year Happy New Year – pass it on.

  31. Annie B

    Went to Facebook ( who change their minds and formats as often as they change their socks ) ….. and had a squiz at the Liberal site there. It’s up and running nicely !! Facebook, for some obvious reasons – specifically being American owned and run .. tends to ‘opt out’ of political situations ( unless it is U.S.) …. but then – we all know that.

    On December 4th at 21.12 hrs the following appeared with a rather spooky image of Bill Shorten plus text below this little gem :

    Labor’s refusal to help the Coalition fix the Budget will hurt living standards of Australians.
    Labor want to make the Budget $43 billion worse off…and they want all Australians to pay for it.
    SHARE if you support fixing the Budget.

    Well … considering the LNP has already doubled the deficit …. are they seriously trying to assert that ( once again ) ….. it’s all Labor’s fault, or worse – WILL be Labor’s fault ?

    Admittedly, the following link goes back to June 2014 …. the ABC’s Fact Check, but from what I have read, nothing much has changed :

    Then there’s today’s report in the Herald Sun. It must be read with an open mind, as of course they have a go at the previous Government – which is to be expected. … but the article does not do Abbott any favours at all…… In fact it ends with :

    ……..” Being relentlessly negative as Opposition leader
    proved brutally effective but appears to have come at a
    terrible cost…. If so, Abbott should appreciate the wisdom
    of Galatians 6:7: “For whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap.”

  32. Bacchus

    We call on His Excellency to restore the standing of this nation in the eyes of the world by withdrawing ministerial warrants, dissolving the current parliament, appointing a caretaker government and beginning the issuance of writs for a new general election.

    But Graham Houghton – under our constitution and the conventions relating to the office of GG, the GG cannot and should not do what you ask in this petition. Why do you waste your time tilting at windmills? Surely you can find a more productive way to get your point across?

  33. Graham Houghton

    Yes, he can and he should. They’re not windmills, they’re very dangerous people. And if we all sat back, accepted the situation and did nothing, like you’re suggesting I should, then I’d be complicit in their lies, deceit and yes, they’re corpus delicti. The guilty have the silent to thank.

  34. Kaye Lee

    The GG has….

    2.The power to dismiss a Prime Minister where he or she has lost the confidence of the Parliament;
    3.The power to dismiss a Prime Minister or Minister when he or she is acting unlawfully

  35. Bacchus

    You might also be considered “a very dangerous person” Graham Houghton. Some (a majority even) people not liking a government is insufficient reason to “withdraw ministerial warrants”. The reserve powers of the GG are very limited by the conventions of the position. While the Abbott government is without doubt the worst government I’ve ever seen, they do not meet any of the criteria under the conventions for dismissal.

    IF you think they do, perhaps you’d like to spell out the mechanism by which this could be achieved? You may like to read this first though 🙄

  36. Annie B

    Bacchus ….

    There appaarently is a way the GG can intervene, but it is long and drawn out ….. involving ( from my aging memory !! ) …. bills that have not been passed for 3 months by the Senate, resulting in a stalemate – even if amendments have been passed back and forth with no legislation being drawn. …. After this, is when the PM approaches the GG for a double dissolution. If no agreement can be reached, the the Governor General himself can convene a joint sitting. I gather with or without Government advice.

    However, a DD CANNOT be called, 6 months before an actual election is due ( at the end of a 3 year term, or before if the PM decides on a prior date ).

    from this link : – – a rather nebulous statement is made.

    ….More than one bill may act as a trigger for a double dissolution.

    Once these conditions (called triggers) have been met, the Prime Minister may recommend to the Governor-General that a double dissolution of the Parliament take place.

    I have not, nor am I about to at this time of day, go rummaging around in the Australian Constitution …. but from the words above, specifically “recommend” it seems more like protocol that the PM approach the GG – who could ( it would appear ) say “no” … as much as he/she might say “yes”. Not just a case of ‘ the Prime Minister only, can call a double dissolution’. There are many links including the Australian Electoral Commission that goes into details as well.

    Sir John Kerr got away with it ( it’s a very interesting read – most here would have read the ‘story’ ) this way

    On 9 November, Kerr consulted the Chief Justice of the High Court of Australia, Sir Garfield Barwick. …..Kerr asked Barwick to advise him on whether he had the constitutional power to dismiss Whitlam, and Barwick advised him, in writing, that he did. ….. He also advised him that at least one other High Court justice, Sir Anthony Mason, concurred in this view.

    I have a little badgering thought here, that the Constitution may have been changed after that debacle … brought about by two men who stood their ground ( Whitlam and Fraser ) ….. against all odds.

    Could someone enlighten me if the Constitution WAS changed, please. …. Meantime I will search it myself as well.

  37. Bacchus

    Yes Annie B, you have explained the mechanism for a DD quite well – those triggers do not yet exist, and I doubt Mr Abbott has the guts to ever let them exist.

    No, the constitution hasn’t changed since the Whitlam dismissal – that one was based on the arguable reason of denial of supply for government to function – that reason also doesn’t currently exist.

    That’s the very point I make – the GG currently has NO reasons to take any notice of Graham Houghton’s petition. It really is tilting at windmills.

  38. Carol Taylor

    Bacchus, perfectly correct. No one person should ever have the ability to overturn our democracy and that includes a representative of *Her Majesty*. In ’75 the GG broke with convention that an election should only be called at the advice of the Prime Minister – it won’t happen again.

  39. Annie B

    Umm … while I was labouring over that long post, Kaye and Bacchus came up with some explanations.

    Thanks …. but …. I still think it is worth looking at – considering a precedent was set on 11th November 1975, when Gough was tipped out.

    Q: … has this Prime Minister already lost – or is he near to losing, the confidence of the Parliament ? ( wouldn’t THAT be interesting )

    Q: … has he already acted unlawfully ( ref. his renouncement – or not – of British citizenship ) ….. doubt that will ever be brought to the surface, unless a whistle-blower, blows ).

    I am about to continue reading the link you have provided Bacchus …. caught sight of the ‘power of veto’ … briefly ….. looks interesting.

    And Bacchus …. how is it that ” denial of supply for government to function – that reason also doesn’t currently exist. ” Why or how does it no longer exist? ….. Denial of supply is what it is. If you get my drift.

  40. Bacchus

    Thank you Carol – I knew you’d be across this, having studied constitutional law and all 😉

  41. Bacchus

    Q: … has this Prime Minister already lost – or is he near to losing, the confidence of the Parliament ?
    A: … NO – the coalition commands a very comfortable majority in the HoR. It would take a sizeable part of his own party for a vote of no confidence to succeed – ‘Tain’t gonna happen!

    Q: … has he already acted unlawfully ( ref. his renouncement – or not – of British citizenship )
    A: … This does remain a possibility, but you’d need proof – good luck with that.

  42. Bacchus

    Sorry to hijack your thread Rossleigh, but Graham Houghton has taken to posting this on almost every thread – I felt that it was time to challenge it. Feel free to tell me where to get off though 😉

  43. Graham Houghton

    Bacchus, as this government was elected after campaigning under false pretences (or to cut the bullshit, lies and deceit) and is clearly an illegitimate government that should be treated with the contempt it deserves until it is sacked. Any other employee obtaining a job under false pretences would be summarily dismissed. I refer you to the two replies above. And as for the emoticon, a picture may say a thousand words, but they’re all about the creator, not the viewer.

  44. Kaye Lee


    What you are describing is a double dissolution trigger which you rightly say can be called by the PM under certain conditions. The GG has the power to refuse a DD but that power has never been exercised. I don’t think they have the power to call one.

    Changing the constitution usually requires a referendum though you may be referring to the passage of the Australia Act in 1986

    or letters patent from the Queen in 2008

  45. Bacchus

    Annie B,

    After the events of 1975, Labor would never block supply to try to bring about an election. I very much doubt that another GG would follow the path Kerr did either – there were other options available to him at the time that could have and should have been taken. Everyone has learned from that debacle.

  46. Annie B

    Yes Bacchus ….. It would need more than good luck with the British Citizen bizzo. ….. as I said – it won’t surface ” unless a whistle-blower, blows” !!

    Meantime, might hope for a mutiny somewhere in the LNP 🙂 …… there are a few mutterings in the camp, but nowhere near enough – – – – yet.

    I can hope, can’t I ?

  47. Kaye Lee


    Abbott had a DD trigger over the blocking of the legislation to repeal the Clean Energy Finance Corporation. He wisely did not take the opportunity.

    While the Senate can put the bullets in the double dissolution gun, it is entirely the Prime Minister’s choice whether and when he fires the loaded gun.

  48. Graham Houghton

    Apologies for my ‘they’re’ instead of ‘their’.

  49. Bacchus

    as this government was elected after campaigning under false pretences (or to cut the bullshit, lies and deceit)

    True – agree 100%

    clearly an illegitimate government

    NO it is a constitutionally correctly elected government – sorry, but you not liking that doesn’t change the fact.

    should be treated with the contempt it deserves

    Agree 100%

    until it is sacked

    The only way that can happen atm is via an election – there are no other grounds available to “sack” them. Once again, sorry, but them’s the facts.

    Sorry, which emoticon did you object to? The 🙄 or the 😉 ?

  50. stephentardrew

    Now Kaye the word wise and Abbott do not go together lets just say fearfully.

  51. Bacchus

    Abbott had a DD trigger over the blocking of the legislation to repeal the Clean Energy Finance Corporation.

    Yes Kaye, you are correct. I had forgotten about that one. One note there though, it is up to the prime minister to call for a double dissolution – the decision is within the government’s hands, not outside. And yes, you are also correct that he was wise not to go there.

  52. Roswell

    As much as I secretly wish there was a quick way of removing this government, nothing will give me greater satisfaction than seeing them thumped at the next election.

  53. Florence nee Fedup

    What was interesting, was Pyne’s reaction after his bills were defeated. He came into the house with new set of similar bills. He said they did not want to represent the defeated bills at a later date, which would provide a DD trigger.

    It appears that Abbott wans no DD trigger bills on the table. One can wonder why?

    Yes Roswell, we have not seen them suffer enough yet. Will blame Labor if removed. I cannot see them being very productive over the next couple of years.

    The next budget, which is not far away, will be a debacle than the last.

    This is an inefficient and ineffective government hog tied by ideology of neoliberalism. Extreme to the zenith degree.

    Most of their toxic do not cut in until next year and mid 2016. That is when families will feel the belt tightening.

  54. Erotic Moustache

    OMG, people are still discussing a DD and the GG’s constitutional powers! Australian political discourse really is a laugh a minute! Angry Birds Star Wars, you’ve met your match!

  55. Kaye Lee

    No-one is born with an innate knowledge of the constitution and I thought we were all here to help each other learn. Ridiculing people because they don’t know constitutional law when even the experts can’t agree is a tad harsh IMO.

  56. Bacchus

    OMG, some mindless troll is still making inane comments on blog sites – who’d a thunk it? 🙄

    EM, if you’ve got nothing vaguely intelligent to add, please don’t bother! You might think you know all there is to know about every subject known to man, and some not yet thought of, but others need edumacating…

  57. Erotic Moustache

    Kaye Lee,

    People pushing such notions do not present as naive types who can’t use Google. They are full of bluster and attitude. They ought be chastised as far as I’m concerned. Have you yet seen a single one of them being other than demanding and assertive, rather than political inquisitive? I haven’t.

    You approach it your way and I’ll approach it mine and in combination people will learn something and be appropriately chastened in the process. Your approach is fine for people asking and I commend it. Most are full of shit.

  58. Bacchus

    You just reinforced my earlier comment – if you’ve got nothing vaguely intelligent to add, please don’t bother!

  59. Erotic Moustache

    What did you add, just out of curiosity?

  60. Kaye Lee

    I guess it comes down to what you hope to achieve. If you want people to become politically inquisitive then don’t knock them down as they show interest. The way you chastise people is more likely to make them never say another thing. Enthusiasm is good and should be nurtured and informed. That doesn’t mean mindless agreement by any means but the one thing I insisted on when I was teaching was that my classroom was a hassle-free zone.

  61. Erotic Moustache

    Kaye Lee,

    That’s fine. I disagree, in context. It all depends on how a view is being expressed. These are not children and I will not treat them as a pedagogue. I assume their ability to educate themselves if they care to; if they care not to, then I will chastise their willful ignorance, as you lot do to conservatives here every single day.

  62. corvus boreus

    I would suggest that EM follow the contributions of Bacchus from 4;15 pm. Note the fact that information and explanation is supplied, rather than mere derision.

  63. Annie B

    @ Erotic M ………….

    ,…… your comment : ” They are full of bluster and attitude. ” ( – that is people who don’t use Google) … OMG !!

    One should never accuse others of the very thing they do themselves. It ain’t productive !! ( LOL ) ….

    The only one here full of ‘bluster and attitude’ is yourself. ……. I dont give a tuppenny stuff if you are Liberal, Labor or what-the-hell-ever ………. Your final words are enough said …..which is ” Most are full of shit.” ….

    And THAT’S the way YOU see ‘people’ learning something ( as you so blithely uttered ).

    However, most of your comment, makes not one iota of sense. You sure do get yourself in a bind with the use of the English language, don’t you. ??

    …….. There are commenters here who could buy and sell you, times over, with their knowledge and positive input. ( not including myself ) …..

    So – go chastise yourself buster, you might learn something.

  64. Florence nee Fedup

    When did we reach the stage where one believes they have the right to chastise others for their views.

  65. Erotic Moustache


    Most lefties calling for an DD or for the GG to sack the Government are stupid in my view. There’s no getting away from that as far as I’m concerned. Suggesting otherwise is an exercise in institutional denial. It’s as embarrassing as when conservatives crapped on about the same thing regarding Gillard:

    Don’t agree? That’s fine. It’s simply my view.

    As for my use of English – I construct my posts in Standard English, unlike yourself, so I don’t know why you made that point.

  66. Matters Not

    calling for an DD or for the GG to sack the Government are stupid in my view

    Yep! It’s not going to happen and, more importantly, it shouldn’t happen. The notion that an unelected, appointed, symbolic ‘figurehead’ should decide the fate of a democratically elected government is anathema.

    As for:

    I construct my posts in Standard English

    is somewhat more problematic. Do you think that Chaucer would have understood your ‘Standard English’? Or was he simply ‘behind the times’?

    Perhaps things ‘change’ and individuals who want to remain ‘in the grove’ have to go with the flow? Just askin ..

  67. John Fraser


    Everything the "Miniscule erotic moustache" post is "stupid in my view".

    And no one can argue with that.

  68. Erotic Moustache

    Matters Not,

    “Standard English (often shortened to SE within linguistic circles) refers to whatever form of the English language is accepted as a national norm in any English-speaking country. It encompasses grammar, vocabulary, and spelling.”

    Annie does not construct her posts this way, a fact with which I have no issue. However, she chose to say I have an issue with English. Do you agree? If not, why are you pursuing that point?

  69. Erotic Moustache

    John the Frase:

    Everything the “Miniscule erotic moustache” post is “stupid in my view”. And no one can argue with that.

    I can, therefore you are wrong, as usual. What else ya got, Jhonno?

    Know anything about computers? Damned if I can get my copy of Angry Birds Star Wars to activate the update. Any ideas?

  70. John Fraser


    I wonder why the "Miniscule erotic moustache" comes here to insult people.

    Must be because he gets tired of sitting in his little web insulting himself.

  71. Erotic Moustache

    “Miniscule erotic moustache” …. you really don’t want to find out what I can do with a computer. Suggest you shut down quickly before I get serious.

    This is a threat that ought not be unacceptable to the owner and admins of AIMN. If it remains I will seek legal advice regarding it.

  72. John Fraser


    What's wrong "Miniscule erotic moustache" ?

    You asked a question and I gave you an answer.

    “Know anything about computers?”

    Humbly suggest …. if you are not running your own VPN you should start using Tor or similar.

    Just a suggestion in case your computer knowledge is as up to date as the rest of your knowledge.

    Lawyers at 50 paces ….. your as big a wimp as the “revolutionarycoward”.

  73. Graham Houghton

    Bacchus, I don’t object to emoticons, but they lack credibility in this context even if they are mildly amusing. Either we’re having a conversation, or we’re watching Mad as Hell.

  74. Erotic Moustache

    Kaye Lee,

    Maybe you’re right. My approach is natural for me on some level but perhaps not especially pragmatic. Do you agree with the general thrust of my objection to people pushing for things constitutional that cannot and should not happen? If so, I urge you to use your power and influence as a respected author – by me also, btw – to educate people as to why this notion of a constitutionally enforced DD or action by the GG is both impossible and undesirable.

    I’m still seeing these ideas expressed all over the place and I find them hideous. They actually scare me as much as the stupidity of this Government scares me. I get the passion, but passion is dangerous when combined with ignorance. You know how to reach people better than I. I know that. I am at best an acerbic critic. I know that too, and I know the limitations of that approach. But I’m too old and angry to be different.

    Write a piece on it and put it to rest, please.

  75. Matters Not

    This is a threat that ought not be unacceptable to the owner and admins of AIMN. If it remains I will seek legal advice regarding it.

    Hilarious! Perhaps Erotic Moustache will be seeking ‘damages’ re his/her reputation? What next? No doubt ‘Miglo’ will be shaking in his newly acquired legal boots

    As for Graham Houghton and his ‘petition’ to return to regal (or vice-regal) prerogative.

    I just shake my head.

  76. John Fraser


    " I am at best an acerbic critic."

    No your not !

    You're a girly man.

    With pretensions of grandeur.

    You do realise your not doing your eyesight any good ?

  77. Michael Taylor

    John F, I had to delete your comment as it did constitute a threat. As the site owner I could be liable. It’s not worth the risk.

    But don’t worry – you’re not alone. I’ve been trigger happy lately as EM himself could testify.

  78. Graham Houghton

    And another thing, I may not like Abbott and his crew for what they are, but it does not colour my perception of whether they are constitutional, or not. The Liberal party could not have formed government without the National Party and that has been the case for years. Therefore we have two minority parties in government, who are there only because of our electoral system. A ‘first past the post’ system would probably have resulted in a hung parliament, or even a marginal Labour victory at the last election. Now don’t get me wrong, I’m not a natural Labour voter; if anything I tend towards independents because they, like the extinct (or should that be in vulcanism terms dormant?) Liberal Democrats try to ‘keep the bastards honest’, mostly. The real problems in all of this comedy of errors are: the woeful lack of statesmanship in the upper echelons of all parties and a voting system that is not only broken,but fundamentally corrupt in that it uses our votes as it pleases. Couple these with fundamentalist philosophies gaining traction across the globe and we are in for a hell of a run. You know, every now and then you have to clean the chimney, or unclinker the boiler, or decoke the cylinders (all throwback fossil fuel metaphors for cleaning out the system) in order to keep the system working. That’s all there is to it. Bacchus, them’s the facts, or your house burns down and this one’s overheating nicely. By the way, I think Abbott might resign shortly and Bishop will be a shoe-in. Why do so many of them seem to have ecclesiastical surnames? I could be wrong about everything. Could we organise an AIMN conference?

  79. corvus boreus

    Erotic Moustache,
    Kaye Lee, Bacchus and others have, on this very thread, been factually and convincingly pointing out the flaws in the idea of petitioning the GG for a DD/dismissal (mainly with details of why it cannot and should not happen).
    Somewhere along the line the focus of conversation turned to angry birds and the merits of chastisement, then descended into accusations of stupidity and threats/intimations of legal action.
    If there is a lesson in all this it is probably; keep it informative, constructive and preferably polite.

  80. John Fraser


    @Michael Taylor

    I was only attempting to educate "Miniscule erotic moustache".

    Guess I will just stick with following him around your site annoying him like he does to others here.

    He's such a girly man.

    But on the bright side he may take my advice and set up his own VPN … that way it will assist to make him safe from those who do not give warning.

  81. Erotic Moustache

    You’re a girly man.

    That’s funny if you say it in a Schwarzenegger accent, otherwise incredibly sexist. Maybe sexist either way, but slightly funny with the accent.

    Ah, John Fraser – the issuer of threats.

  82. John Fraser



    If you ever travel outside your web and get an accent let everyone know so that we can all laugh louder at you.

  83. Michael Taylor

    May I suggest we put a stop to this? You are both capable of intelligent, informed discussions. I enjoy reading your comments when they are crafted as such.

  84. Erotic Moustache


    I’m all for that.

  85. John Fraser


    Then there will be no more of the "charlatan" type of comment "Mem" ?

    You will try to add to the discussion …. not derail it.

  86. Graham Houghton

    Northern crows are very intelligent dinosaurs; as are all corvids.

  87. Bacchus

    So you don’t like emoticons Graham. Fine, but have you learnt from this thread why your petition is a massive waste of effort? Propagating ignorance of how our constitution or electoral system currently works is counterproductive. If you wish to do something useful, campaign for something that can actually happen. Stop tilting at windmills 😉

  88. Bacchus


    You may like to think more deeply about your support for a first past the post system and how easily it could be rorted by the political class. Perhaps a bit of research and critical thought could be applied before you post again?

  89. Graham Houghton

    Oh, Bacchus. No I haven’t. Several people here have confirmed the GG’s power to remove Prime Ministers and Ministers under certain circumstances even if they think it wrong to use that power. And it’s no effort at all to copy and paste a link at any time, anywhere. As for first past the post as a system for electing representatives to parliament, well, it’s worked very reliably in many other parts of the world for a very long time, notably in the UK, the home of the Westminster system on which this banana republic laughably bases its own political system. You appear to think you need to coach me in political science for some reason or other. Are you a naturally superior being, or just being bighearted and generous with your rucksack full of majestic wisdom? And I’m getting as bored with your Quixotic mantra as you are with my petition, so I’m calling a truce. You won’t be hearing from me again except when I post the link to my petition. See? That wasn’t hard, was it?

  90. Bacchus

    notably in the UK, the home of the Westminster system

    Actually Graham, the UK uses SIX different voting systems including a form of optional preferential voting (they call it the alternative vote), depending on the election. Why would the home of the Westminster system need more than just your obviously superior first past the post system? Please explain.

    You like links? Try this one:
    The Problems with First Past the Post Voting Explained

    You appear to think you need to coach me in political science for some reason or other.

    Only because you seem to have no idea of how our system works, as amply demonstrated by your nonsensical petition! I’m not bored with your petition – I think it’s dangerous. Some people of goodwill are being made more ignorant because of your ignorance, or at the very least, not enlightened by what you have to say. That’s not what the AIMN is about. You do realise that not one person on this thread has supported the substance of your petition? I wonder why that might be?

    Michael – we’ve established that Graham has no idea of what he’s talking about. Can we just delete any post that contains this ignorant petition?

  91. Florence nee Fedup

    The GG only has limited power to remove a PM. In fact, the government has to lose the numbers on the floor of the lower house, before he can act. Even then, he can do as Kerr asked Fraser to do, ask the Opposition to form government. I think, that if the Opposition can garner the numbers, the GG would not be involved.

    If a PM is found corrupt, I do not see the GG being involved. What would happen, the government party would elect a new leader.

    After the Whitlam fiasco, I believe both parties agreed that supply would never be blocked again. In fact, Fraser only refuse to vote, not block.

    Even in Whitlam’s day, there was conflicting advice on what the powers of the GG. In fact, it comes down to what the Queen wants. GG is only her agent. Convention over the years has seen the Queen playing no role.

    Running around with a petition to the GG is an useless activity.

    Better to petition those sitting on the backbench of the government, to get some spine, take the necessary action.

    As for first past the post voting. Is the unfairness of the lot. Only works if one wants a two party system. We do not have that, even though at times, that seems to be the case.

    Not sure what we have now is working. Especially so, when optional voting is not compulsory. It is first past the post by default.

    I would be looking a some type of Hare Clark system. Maybe say five elected to a set region or area.

    Then there is the French system where there are two elections. The second, a run off of the two highest votes
    of the candidates from the first round.

    Remember, there is no mention of parties of even PM in the constitution.

    Abbott is a legitimate duly elected MP, whose party made him leader therefore PM. This came about by convention.

    Each electorate elects a MP, who is mandated to sit in parliament. It is up to these MPs to make parliament work.

    Does not have to be either party. Can be minority or even made up f independents. It is who garners a majority on the floor of he lower house. The government can only survive while they have those votes.

    The question that interests me, is why Pyne did not hold his legalisation after it was defeated He bought new but similar legalisation into the lower house the next day. He said he needed to do this, as they did not want any DD triggers on the table. My question, is why?

    All I can think of, is Abbott does not want any triggers, so no pressure can be put on him to call an DD election. Bit gutless in my eyes.

    By the way, the PM can only approach the GG, for permission to call DD election. There are time limits on when this can occur. The GG does not have to agree to the request. The GG has options. He can send the PM back, to make further attempts to get legalisation through. Can ask others if they can form government.

    This is a muddle explanation of what is available to unseat Abbott.

  92. Annie B

    @Florence Nee Fed Up ……

    While I understand some of the conventions ( ?? ) surrounding the Constitutional applications in making Government and the role the GG plays, I do not have anywhere near the knowledge of many posters here.

    I am a little confused at some of your statements ….

    1 ) ….. If a PM is found corrupt, I do not see the GG being involved.

    ….. I believe that IS one of the situations that a GG can intervene. … Depends on what you mean by ‘corrupt’ … refer Kaye Lee’s comment at 5:03 pm Dec 30th. Corrupt = unlawfully ? Are they the same thing or not ? …. would need high profile legal advice on that one. ( which Sir John Kerr sought and obtained in November 1975 ).

    2) …. ” In fact, it comes down to what the Queen wants. GG is only her agent. Convention over the years has seen the Queen playing no role.

    That is contradictatory in a way …….. the Queen is appraised of what is going on first in the UK, and then also in all of her Commonwealth of countries. …… She receives her ‘little red box’ of goodies each day, and allows an audience with her own Prime Minister. …. She is only appraised of situations, and has absolutely nothing to say ( as convention decrees ) about what she desires or seeks. Under her signature therefore, she has absolutely NOTHING to say. …. therefore it is not ‘what the Queen wants’, to quote you. However, we will never be privy to what she and her Prime Minister discuss at these meetings. Could be anything – but she will not put her stamp, signature or seal to anything in her own name.

    3) … “As for first past the post voting. Is the unfairness of the lot. Only works if one wants a two party system. We do not have that, even though at times, that seems to be the case.

    Could someone correct me if I am wrong, but we DO have a 2PP – ( two party preferred ) system at work in this country.

    4) ….The last thing Abbott would want at this time is any trigger(s) for a DD … and Pyne knew that very well, and – as you noted – he explained that ( apparently ). Absolutely right I would think – ( more’s the pity )

    5)…. “By the way, the PM can only approach the GG, for permission to call DD election.

    As I understand it ( and it almost comes down to semantics …. depending on which site and article you are reading ) ….. the Prime Minister can approach the GG with a ‘recommendation’ for a DD. The GG – after consideration can say yes or no …. ( although ‘no’ has never been said in our history ). Again it depends on what ‘permission’ or ‘recommendation’ might mean. The words mean different things. All quite confusing.

    Politics, IMO … ( and probably many others ) is one of the dirtiest games played out on this planet. Nothing ANY of the parties ( the two main in particular ) do – should surprise any of us.

    I doubt that the ‘game’ can ever be cleaned up to reflect honesty, trust and true consideration for ( in our case ) the Australian populace.

  93. Florence nee Fedup

    Annie, if the PM was found corrupted, or even found to be misleading the house, I do not see4 why this would lead to calling an election. The PM would just resign. The party would then elect a new PM. (Unlikely to be found misleading the noose with this mob. Conventions do not seem to count for them)

    If more than one was found corrupt, leaving this mob unable to garner the numbers on the floor of the lower house, I believe one of two things could happen. The Opposition form government after gaining the numbers, or the GG asking them if they can form government. I do not know if it is possible or how one could find a whole government corrupt. Maybe that could happen. Just cannot imaginer it. I believe that government is form by able to have the numbers. Can change sides without election.

    I believe that Kerr sought advice fro9m two sources. There was disparity in the advice given.

    Yes, the Queen stays in the background. That is her choice. I think she would be happy to be right out of the picture, According to Constitution, she is’ head o state.

    Not according to the Constitution. We have more than two parties, as well as independents, Constitution only mentions individual MPs. Does not mention parties or even Prime Minister.

    Yes, PM can only approach GG for DD. Does not have to happen. Truth is, it does. Have not hear4d of GG refusing.

    I believe the GG has to issue the writs for any election. Might explain some of the confusion. Don’t forget, Kerr did not follow the directions of Whitlam, which many thought then and still thinks should have occurred. Many believe the GG has to act on the on the direction of the PM. Confusion can only be cleared if taken to the Supreme Court. The Constitution is not a long document.

    I believe politics has always been dirty, butt at this time is more dirty than usual. What Abbott needs to learn, politics is also only the art of the possible. He needs to learn, one does lot get their own way.

    It is up to him to negotiate, find a way through.

    The constitution says legalisation is passed by gaining the votes of individual MPs on the floor of both houses. Each MP has one vote. All are equal.

    It is the voter, the public that has to hold all politicians accountable. Keep them honest. We all have a duty to take a part in politics to protect our democracy.

    Annie, you seem to have a good idea how the system works., Do not sell yourself short.

    Often there is no right or wrong, black or white answers. It all depends on our own agenda, what we want.

    I want a civil society, one where fairness counts. I judge all from that point of view,

    Yes, when it comes to politics, along with law, meanings of words can be important. Sometimes when it comes to the Constitution, Judges try to make decisions on what they believe was in the mind of the founding fathers and legislators. What their intentions were.

    By the way, these are only my understanding of what politics is about. I am sure many will disagree. That is good.

  94. Annie B

    Florence ….

    Cannot argue with much you have said – and wouldn’t want to. …. There’s too much argument in our land, as it is !!

    One thing that I did research, and showed a different ‘situation’ was …..

    ……. ” I believe that Kerr sought advice from two sources.
    There was disparity in the advice given.” ….

    Yes he did seek it from two high court judges – one Sir Garfield Barwick, and other – High Court Justice Sir Anthony Mason ……but both ‘concurred in this view ‘ according to one source (only) that I referred to. Perhaps that needs to be clarified. .. there would probably be many versions of the events, and the legal advice.

    ….” We all have a duty to take a part in
    politics to protect our democracy.”…..

    Yes – we do …. but how can we protect democracy, when a Government seems bent on destroying the fabric of just that – democratic decisions and activity. ……. When a Government begins to ‘hide’ situations from the public, democracy takes a beating. There are national security situations that require a secrecy – which is why the “Secrecy Act ” must be viewed and signed as being viewed by certain members of staff of the Australian Government ( no matter who is in power ). My son who was in the Antarctic for over a year ( he’s back home now ) …. had to sign that, and applied it very diligently – when I asked a wrong question or two of him ( on the phone from Davis Base ).

    However, there is a lot of obfuscation and deliberate misleading of the public, not to mention fear-mongering that goes out – particularly from this Government – and THAT is not anywhere near being democratic.

    I cannot say, how I think democracy might be protected. !!!!!!! …. If we still have it, that is.

    If we don’t – it WILL return.

  95. Florence nee Fedup

    Howard and this government are too quick to pull the secrecy act. They are even withholding travel expenses now while overseas, Now that Abbott with his RC has broken the seal that was practice when it came to cabinet documents, we will not have to wait, is it twenty years. Truth will out in the end.

  96. Annie B

    You are right about that Florence ………. truth will ALWAYS out …..

  97. Kaye Lee

    Is it safe to come out yet? Testosterone fuelled chest poking makes otherwise intelligent people rather tedious.

  98. Graham Houghton

    The fact is that many signatories to
    are readers of these beautiful pages. And the sad fact is for the deniers, that people here may be against the excercise of reserve powers and that is their absolute and undeniable right in a free society, one which I will defend as much as I defend every democratic priciple such as free speech. But they acknowledge their existence and their potential, complicated though it may be, to address constitutional problems such as an incompetent government and a probably illegal PM in the light of any evidence to the contrary re his citizenship. And so Bacchus finally reveals his true colours. Censorship and Morriscumesque secrecy. The antithesis of democratic free speech and the kind of junk thinking that got us here in the first place.

  99. Bacchus

    You’re safe Kaye. Graham obviously isn’t here to learn anything – he can have his own opinions, but facts seem to elude him…

    I apologise to AIMN readers for losing my patience with him – subject closed as far as I’m concerned.

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