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Yes is inclusive, No is divisive

The words speak for themselves, but I shall return to them briefly…


It’s Abbott versus Shorten, while Turnbull rests.

The Coalition’s predisposition for major cock-ups is now bordering on becoming legendary. The ABS $120 million survey is yet another example. There is no other way to describe this non-binding, non-compulsory way of ridiculing a minority of our citizens and denying them equality.

The nonsense of this decision, or the argument for it, can be dismissed with one simple fact. They could all walk into Parliament on Monday, have a conscience vote, and that would be the end of the matter.

But while the rest of the world acts our Government can only think about appeasing a minority of far right religious bigots in their ranks.


But let me get back to the survey and the politics of it. It would be fair to say that this week has been a disaster for the Government. It got itself into such a mess on this issue that it became desperate, looking as red faced as some teenage boys at a high school sex lesson.

So deficient is it in any form of planning the media has given up on calling it a plebiscite and has settled on the downgraded term ‘’survey.’’

When you here them say, ‘’we are doing what we said we would do,” dismiss it as lying by omission. It’s far from their original policy.

Of course, as I have stated previously, the argument against this silly postal vote is a valid and compelling one. There is a process when legislation is repeatedly rejected. It’s called a double dissolution.

The survey has little legitimacy or credibility. It is just a deeply flawed survey designed to delay the inevitable. Goodness knows how many will take it seriously. And one has to ask the question as to why Turnbull would give Shorten three months to make himself look good while the Prime Minister, already in stress mode, says he wont have time to campaign for a yes vote.

As I see it, no matter what happens Shorten cant lose even if the High Court should knock it on the head.

Please follow my thought processes. Lets say the NO vote gets up and it’s certainly not without a chance given the arrangements. Turnbull would be caught between a rock and a hard place. He would have to honour the result.

Whatever the winning percentage the issue would not go away. If the vote was tight Shorten will argue legitimacy. The issue would be raised repeatedly. Folk on the YES side would continuously raise the matter of principle and the conservative reluctance for change.

Whilst Turnbull desperately needs an overwhelmingly positive YES vote he say he won’t be campaigning for it. My guess is that he has been ordered not too.

Again he will have to show his naked hypocrisy. If the yes vote wins it will be Shorten who gets the credit.

Kaye Lee in a comment yesterday said:

”Interestingly, Malcolm Turnbull gave the 2012 Michael Kirby Lecture – Reflections on Gay Marriage. It’s worth a read because, like all of Malcolm’s speeches, it underlines what a weak-kneed hypocrite he has become.”

If the vote goes down in a tight contest by looking uninterested Turnbull will have to take the blame for not campaigning hard enough.

I didn’t see Shortens speech in Parliament but I’m assured that it was perhaps his best speech as Labor leader. He apparently declared Turnbull weak, unprincipled, and hostage to party room ideologues.

As it stands, Turnbull will be left out of the action if he doesn’t campaign and Shorten and Abbott will become the prominent YES or NO protagonists. It will be interesting to see how Shorten handles Abbott’s lying.

Shorten probably has the weight of public opinion on his side but Abbott will counter with a landslide of gutter politics that I predict will make ones hair stand on end.

Well not mine, but you know what I mean.

And should the High Court (a good each way bet in my view) give the survey the flick then Shorten wins again and Turnbull is left with nowhere to go. It might even cost him the election, and his job.

Before I conclude might I suggest that we give a thought for the LBGTI people who have been sucked into this survey and the damage homophobes can cause to their self-esteem. Here is an example from the darling of self-importance, Bronwyn Bishop.

Here is another tasteless, and factually incorrect one from Tony Abbott.

”Tony Abbott’s claim that marriage is to ‘protect women and children’ rewrites history”

My thought for the day:

”You only truly know a person when who know the cause of the scars they carry.”


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  1. Terry2


    I agree, this succession of blunders by the coalition are doing Shorten no harm at all.

    Yesterday the coalition tried to point a finger at Labor for not doing anything about marriage equality when in office but they conveniently ignored the vote in the House in September 2012 when the Bill failed with just 42 votes in favour. Anthony Albanese noted at the time :

    “Just a few years ago there wouldn’t have been the support of anything like 42 votes on the floor of the national Parliament for a marriage equality bill. All the figures show that there is majority community support on this issue… and I think at some future time, Parliament will catch up with the community opinion.”

    It was very telling at the time that then Liberal frontbencher Malcolm Turnbull, who had spoken out in favour of same-sex marriage laws, voted against the legislation because of Mr Abbott’s decision not to allow a free vote on the issue.

    Turnbull will go down in our political history as a man lacking in substance and principle.

  2. Kaye Lee

    Abbott is using the US playbook of pretending that marriage equality is about other things like freedom of religion, freedom of speech, political correctness…Lyle Shelton even brought up Safe Schools.

    In the US, there was a Supreme Court decision two years ago that found in part that one group of Americans did not get to hold a vote to decide upon the basic human rights of another.

    “He knows they cannot win on the merits of their argument,” explains Wolfson, noting that Australians already overwhelmingly back gay marriage, “so they have to make the debate about something else.” That’s why Abbott announced that this was about political correctness and freedom of speech rather than gay marriage.

    While mainstream politicians in the US kept their hands clean, aware that outright homophobia doesn’t wash anymore, a subterranean poison of invective followed the overt campaign, and this too will now by foisted upon Australian gays and their families.

  3. Terry2

    Under the Australian Bureau of Statistics Act 1975 the ABS have specific legislated duties comprising the collection, compilation, analysis and dissemination of statistics. In other words they can’t run plebiscites.

    To overcome this, the coalition advisers have turned to George Orwell as they frequently do and henceforth what was called a plebiscite last week will for future purposes be known as a statistical survey and all historical records will be updated accordingly.

    Winston Smith will be busier than a one armed paper hanger !

  4. wam

    What a great description, Lord, $6 per per person for a survey that could cost 10 cents each with no angst or nothing if trumball would give a free vote in parliament or shorten would not give a free vote and entsch will cross the floor

    Don’t think a yes or no has an ‘each way’? Sady, I am a pessimist so expect 3 for wilkie.

    If marriage is ‘to protect’ how can it be denied to penny wong and michael kirby?

    How anyone can think christ would deny giving loving couples equality is beyond me.

    Until you are know the truth, friends are ‘acquaintances’??

  5. John S

    It came to my notice yesterday that if you are on the roll as a silent voter, you will not be ale to vote in this “survey.” The reason is as the ABS is running the “survey” they will be using the public rolls and as silent voters address are not on the public roll, and by law the AEC can not give anyone the silent voters address so how will silent voters get their papers to vote. I rang the local AEC yesterday and ask them and the girl didn’t know what would happen, she was going to make some phone calls and get back to me, at the moment she hasn’t call back.

    I going to ring Bill Shorten office in Canberra on Monday and let him know, it might be a bit more mud labor can throw at this “so call government.”

  6. Kaye Lee

    Abbott said marriage “is something that evolved many centuries ago to protect women and children”.

    Ah yes, the good old days when women and children were considered possessions. Abbott also said “most of us would accept that a bad boss is a little bit like a bad father or a bad husband … you find that he tends to do more good than harm.”

    In 2016, 42% of Murders recorded nationally were FDV-related (95 victims)

  7. Kyran

    Shorten’s speech transcript.;query=Id%3A%22chamber%2Fhansardr%2Fa6c65346-da53-4608-aff3-32246f6cdf73%2F0165%22

    With regard to the ‘campaigning’ process, these clowns have been changing their language all week. Initially;
    “Prime Minister Turnbull said the weakest argument against a ballot was that voters could not have a respectful discussion of issues during a two-month postal ballot campaign. Mental health authorities and gay groups fear there could be personal attacks on marriage equality advocates.”

    On the same day;
    “Emotions ran high during the debate with Senator Wong slamming the government for being “so divided and so legless”, saying the decision on marriage equality had been “handballed” to the community because it couldn’t be made in the party room.
    She also urged the government not to expose her children with her female partner to hate.”

    “Senator Cormann argued a public vote would enable those on the losing side of the argument to more readily accept the result.
    He rejected claims the debate around a plebiscite would be damaging, insisting the government trusted the Australian people to have a respectful debate.”

    So our PM says Australian’s can have a respectful debate. His chief head kicker, in the midst of a broohaha in the senate, says the same thing (clearly ignoring the fact that the debate in the senate that very day was already disrespectful). If that is the case, why do they need to rush through legislation to try and curtail the likely vitriol they seem to be advocating?

    Maybe they were aware of media reports on the ‘respectful debate’ on day 2 of what is likely to be a long and confusing ‘debate’.

    With regard to the process, a ‘work in progress’ that has yet to put forward a draft of the question to be asked, how will it actually work? From GetUp;

    “But this is about more than marriage equality, this is about the kind of democracy we want to live in. Here’s just a few reasons this postal survey is a disaster:
    • No Protections. Because our election laws don’t apply, there’s no prevention against lies and no protection for LGBTIQ families and their children against anonymous hate – propelled by a multi-million dollar national campaign.
    • Anonymous Ballots. There will be no personal identifiers on the survey, so no way to know who’s filled it out! Experts warn of the huge risk of fraud, because it’s not an actual voting process.
    • Gamed for the ‘no’ vote. It privileges older Australians over younger, who are 75% more likely to complete a postal survey, and the least likely age group to vote for marriage equality.”

    Bearing in mind the many concerns of Privacy advocates regarding the inclusion of ‘identifiers’ on census fail, the ‘anonymous ballots’ is an interesting aspect. If ‘voters’ merely photocopy the form and submit, say, 10 responses, what happens?

    And just to prove that things can get more absurd;

    “Opposition Leader Bill Shorten has urged supporters of same-sex marriage to get behind the “yes” case, despite his ongoing concerns about the $122 million “dog’s breakfast” postal ballot.
    He has written to Malcolm Turnbull inviting the prime minister to co-sign a letter to every Australian in support of a “yes” vote.
    Mr Turnbull was circumspect about Mr Shorten’s call for a joint letter, again criticising Labor’s decision to block the February plebiscite.
    “I’ve been a supporter of gay marriage much longer than him,” he told 3AW radio.
    “Whether I sign a letter with Bill Shorten, I’ll reflect on whether that is useful. It may actually be counter-productive.””

    Our PM, an advocate of marriage equality, is not only too busy to campaign on the matter, he is unsure if his signature on a letter is useful. Our ‘circumspect PM’ doesn’t qualify if ‘useful’ refers to the campaign or his brilliant career. Yep, our PM. Living proof that invertebrates can walk.
    Thank you Mr Lord and commenters. Take care

  8. Terry2


    We now see the two former Prime Ministers (Abbott and Howard) joining together to support the NO campaign and whether Turnbull joins with Shorten to support a Yes vote will be very instructive ; Turnbull has a track record of flip-flopping but were he to show unity with Labor over this opinion-poll it would demonstrate that he does have some moral stamina but it would also be out of character.

  9. Owen

    Hi all ..Let them have their survey but don’t let them stop at one question that could have been included in the last census..They should ask lots of questions to reset our direction ..indiginous treaty
    Banking Royal commission
    Federal ICAC..
    Etc 122million is a lot of money for just one question….

  10. helvityni

    Owen, we are a very rich country, they say often. Why then, do we have so many poor people….

  11. Roswell

    My apologies for going off topic, John (and please feel free to delete my comment if you so desire) but I have nowhere else to post this …

    News coming out of the US is that Trump is considering military intervention in Venezuela.

    The man clearly has too many toys to play with.

  12. Florence nee Fedup

    He has also had a go at Iran. Saudi Arabia not mentioned yet. We are in danger because we now have a PM who is as unhinged as Abbot and Trump.

    We can hope China talks some sense tonight with the proposed phone hookup.

    It is a wonder he isn’t saying he will go into Cuba, even Mexico on the way through.

  13. Owen

    Hylvityni rich country??? Perhaps we have some Rich people that have harvested our country rather than invested in our nation….

  14. helvityni

    Yes , Owen, we are not like Norway where the country’s riches have been invested to benefit the whole population, not just the few ‘gold-diggers’, I mean mining magnates…

  15. Graeme Henchel

    Whenever he spoke I felt quite sick
    Did he think I was stupid?
    Did he think I was thick?
    He made false promises, told so many lies
    kept making excuses and he’d blame other guys

    So I stopped listening, over it all
    The lies, the excuses, hypocrisy and gall

    Then he started pleading, said he’d changed
    I saw no difference, he must be deranged
    Yet all of his mates were still right by his side
    But they can’t be trusted, all of them lied

    So whenever he spoke, I just turned off
    I knew he’d be lying, enough is enough

    He became more deluded, like Monty’s black knight
    kept changing the story saying black, now is white
    When called to account, he’d build lie upon lie
    with a wink and a smirk and a bogus blue tie

    So I moved on, tired of the lies
    eagerly awaiting his certain demise

    He says now he’s turned over a new leaf
    But no apology for the pain and the grief
    He wants forgiveness, but no mention of fault
    It’s just a fig leaf for continued assault

    He then pretends he’s the great protector
    Saving us all from the terrorist spectre
    There are no depths that he won’t go
    Division and fear is all he knows

    And long after he was shown the door
    This lying moron continues to boor
    Deluded, deceitful and still full of shit
    Replaced by another duplicitous twit

    Now this desperate Thug is at it again
    Same old abuse causing division and pain
    This time I’ll not ignore his offensive attacks
    This destructive Thug must be stopped in his tracks

    It’s time this prick was put in his place
    A collective mid finger put right in his face
    To massively fail twas always his fate
    Saying Yes to love will overcome hate

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