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Day to Day Politics: Love hath no gender.

1 Conservatives need to face the fact that Marriage Equality is unlikely to disappear. There is every likelihood that the issue, until resolved, will display its rainbow until the next election when Turnbull would have to argue against something he supports all over again.

Now this time it seems as reported by the Guardian that a group of Liberals in support of same-sex marriage is leading a push for the government to ditch its plebiscite policy in favour of a free vote in parliament. The backbenchers are reportedly working to bring the issue to a head in the next fortnight.

Naturally enough the homophobic Catholic former Prime Minister Abbott has his balls in a knot over the suggestion that his colleagues be given a free conscience vote on the issue.

An observation.

”Love is when there is an irresistible urge for the need of the affection of another and the irresistibility is of its nature mutual. Love has no gender”.

Would Turnbull allow a free vote if the moderates have the numbers? Well the argument goes that to do so would mean backing down on a plebiscite policy they took to the last election. He would also face the prospect of Bernardi and Christensen leaving the party.

But all things considered he must also remember that the public overwhelmingly supports marriage equality. Liberal MP Warren Entsch, a long-time supporter, wants the matter dwelt with once and for all.

The plebiscite was merely a contrivance for having the public do something that the parliament was elected to do but didn’t have the guts to.

A Senate inquiry into same sex-marriage draft laws brings down its findings in a week or so. Obviously discussion will follow. We can only hope that conservatives put aside their individual hatred of homosexuality and acquiesce that which the majority of Australians want. That is that marriage equality be available for all.

2 Donald Trump after two weeks in the job continues to blatantly lie. He said he would divest himself of all his business interests, His hasn’t.

New documents confirm that Donald Trump retains a direct tie to his business interests through a revocable trust overseen by one of his adult sons and a long-time executive of the Trump Organization.

3 Yes, only two weeks into his Presidency Trump is overturning the small gains Barack Obama made into America’s gun laws.

Republicans voted 235/180 to repeal a law that blocked Social Security disability recipients with mental disorders from buying guns. Yes, that’s right, Republicans have given the mentally ill easier access to guns.

What sort of a society would permit its mentally ill to legally own a gun? It’s estimated that 20% of shootings in America are carried out by mentally deranged people.

4 We are not finished yet. President Donald Trump became the first president in modern history to have more than half of Americans disapprove of his job performance after only eight days in office.

5 The whole world suffered from the unregulated capitalism that caused the World Financial Crisis. As a result the Obama administration put in place that would prevent the same thing happening again. Trump has now rescinded them.

On this day in 2016 I wrote:

”What I am getting at here is that Australian politics is like a construction where the builder thinks he is in charge but the foreman and his crew are undermining all the work because they want to do it their way. The architect drew up a grand design but everyone on the site thinks they know better. The construction is a mess and everyone thinks they have a plan but the sites pet dog ate it.

Look at our Politics. The economy is in a mess as is health and education. Immigration Policy a disaster as is the Environment.

Despite having the most qualified cabinet in Australian political history you would have to say that if they were the board of a major business you would sack them all. There would be a shareholders revolt.

You see we, with undoubtable evidence, have proved that we are just very bad at doing politics. Our democracy is badly in need of a makeover, restoration even. The problem is that everyone is so busy building their own egos that they don’t have time to plan anything, let alone fix it. The only thing they are good at is talking about what they might do.”

My thought for the day

“When we go out of our way to help someone less fortunate we cannot avoid helping ourselves”.



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  1. Peter F

    “Turnbull would have to argue against something he supports all over again.” No, John, Turnbull does NOT support the LGBTI community, the facade of support is only as far as giving him support in his election campaign: Why am I not surprised?

  2. Keith

    The plebiscite was contrived to push decision making into the future; also, extreme right wing politicians have stated they would not necessarily go along with the decision of the electorate. As you succinctly put it John, conservative politicians are too gutless to vote on the matter.

  3. Keith

    Something that cuts across LNP and Labor; at the 2013 election I felt that Labor and LNP were at the bottom of the barrel on the issue of immigration/refugees. As Earth warms we can expect more conflict in areas hit by drought causing the refugee problem to continue. The first waves of refugees have not been resolved in any positive way globally.

    “Pope Francis condemned the hypocrisy from Christians who are merciless to refugees and people of other faiths, addressing a gathering of a pilgrimage of Catholics and Lutherans from Germany, reports Catholic News Service.”

    He went on to say:

    “You cannot be a Christian without practicing the Beatitudes. You cannot be a Christian without doing what Jesus teaches us in Matthew 25,” a reference to what is known as the Parable of the Judgment or the Parable of the Sheep and the Goats.


    For me, I see more ethics in the Codes of Ethics displayed by Allied Health workers than displayed by some who profess to be Christian. An example being telling lies; a huge breach of ethics for an Allied Health worker, for politicians lies seem to come as second nature. Many politicians profess to be Christian.

  4. Terry2

    From this morning’s radio interviews, it is clear that the Liberal party talking points on marriage equality are ” our policy is a plebiscite, that’s our policy and we are sticking with it “.

    I find this quite surprising given that the plebiscite was thrown out by the Senate and the coalition have no plans to reintroduce the legislation. So, in fact, they have no policy !

    Another instance of the conservative Right holding the government and the country hostage.

  5. wam

    wow glad you lied about not concentrating on trump Lord, today’s effort is great with not a fake in sight.
    Trump was going to release tax details according to bloomberg
    “Federal ethics rules require the president to file annual financial … “Trump would be the boss over the agency reviewing him, so isn’t that a lot of … After Trump cited audits in declining to release his tax returns,”

    are ethical considerations law lord???

    Did you miss the expectation to repeal all obama’s executive decisions by a simple signature??

    gay rights to marriage vs religion? a god that supports murder should have notproblems with marriage or ‘gay’,.

    How about hanson’s vision? The rabbott’s vision? bernardi’s vision?

  6. Harquebus

    “The economy is in a mess as is health and education. Immigration Policy a disaster as is the Environment.”
    A year on and I am one who is not surprised at our worsening situation. Frightened yes, surprised no.

  7. stephentardrew

    Spot on John. Children with their endless need for validation fighting amongst themselves for their self-interest. The needs of the country are second to their irrationality prejudice and lack of informed facts. Plato predicted the failings of democracy and he was certainly prescient in “The Republic”.

    Governance requires informed facts and a high level of training in logic and rationality not religious nonsense that, in essence, destroys the development of a functional society. The argument that democracy is the best political model is looking decidedly fragile.

    Each epoch requires re-framing of the philosophical and political narrative. As we head towards environmental catastrophe, the combination of religious irrationality and uninformed democracy seems to be a recipe for disaster.

    Evolution is slow and tedious and it seems human beings trapped in a fossilised past are their own worst enemy. Natural selection is about to demonstrate our stupidity through immense turmoil and suffering. The elites will not go unscathed.

  8. Miriam English

    My favorite definition of love:

    Love is that condition in which the happiness of another person is essential to your own.
    — Robert Heinlein

    As Keith said, the plebicite was never more than an excuse to kick the can down the road and not do anything. And in the event of it returning a result undesired by the LNP they had unashamedly admitted they would ignore it anyway.

    I'm amazed that some LNP twits are still saying the vanished plebicite is their only policy. What utter fools.

    I truly hope Bernardi and Christensen are stupid enough to leave the party. It would divide the LNP, weakening them. That would be great!

  9. Klaus Petrat

    Hi John,

    Most of what you wrote today is correct, as usual. However,

    “The plebiscite was merely a contrivance for having the public do something that the parliament was elected to do but didn’t have the guts to.”

    I venture to say that MT did not have the guts to do something about it. He loves his office too much to do anything controversial in his party. Hanging in there by his teeth.

    This spineless man could have done something long ago.

    Now the LNP blurts out how he stood up for all Australians. Good on’ya Mal – If it was true.

    And yes, I believe very strongly, that

    a) there is a contra-deal in the making
    b) Trump decides to stop vetting for the foreseeable future
    c) Nobody passes the “extreme” vetting process

    Whatever the case, the LNP is simply not believable. The lack of transparency is staggering.

    Hopefully Cory B. will fix this by forming his own party. There is hope.

  10. Terry2

    So, Bernardi has leaked the fact that he is going and will start his own party with the financial backing of Gina Rinehart, so who will go with him ? Christensen seems almost certain (he wasn’t taking media calls this morning and that’s quite revealing).

    Ray Hadley suggested to Scott Morrison on 2GB this morning that the only way the LNP coalition could survive would be for Turnbull to be tossed out : Morrison not buying in to speculation but not defending Turnbull either.

    With Bernardi likely to fracture the LNP vote and One Nation stripping away National Party votes, Labor is looking like a unified and focused alternative at the next election particularly if Abbott moves on Turnbull.

    Interesting times but not much governing going on !

  11. Chris

    As a Christian myself I totally agree with your definition of LOVE. But the topic of discussion is MARRIAGE. And while LOVE is the basis of MARRIAGE, more is required of each individual. LOVE on it’s own is NOT enough, and you can never fulfill the role of the opposite gender no matter how hard you the try. A woman cannot be a man, no more than a man can be a woman. And as much as you try you can only be like them to a limited degree. So don’t think for a moment that two male parents or two female parents can be a mum and a dad, for it’s simply not possible to be an entirely new species just because you believe it to be so, and even science agrees. You may think what you want but our brains are wired differently, it’s NOT just about plumbing as is the lie.

  12. helvityni

    Arundhati Roy, the award winning Indian author writes beautifully about Love Laws, which are about who you can love, and how much…

    Looks like our Liberal leaders have their own special ruling about who you can love, marry, have children with… Maybe their rules are not so much about love, but simply about whom we can copulate with, have sex with… Time has come to move on , well, with times…

    Reading about our rampant domestic violence makes one wonder if we shouldn’t ban marriages between men and women… 🙂

  13. Kate Ahearne

    Thanks, John. So much to think about!

    Chris, You say, ‘You may think what you want but our brains are wired differently, it’s NOT just about plumbing as is the lie.’

    You’ve hit the nail on the head.Yes. we ARE all wired differently, and some of us are wired LGBT or I. We all have male and female aspects within ourselves, whether we experience ourselves as male, female or something else. In a healthy, loving gay relationship, for instance, those male and female aspects are all there – just not distributed in quite the samme way they are distributed in a relationship between people who experience themselves as heterosexual male and female.

  14. Chris

    I agree with you there that we all have male and female attributes to some degree. As I was raised primarily by women and can do more things at home than other men I know, so to say any different would be lying to myself. But there still remains situations in life that are best addressed by a woman alone, and no man on earth can ever take that place, no matter how he was brought up. We all need each other as each of us are different but nobody marries just out of love, there has to be something other than just feelings alone. As feelings come, feelings go, but love, true love, not as the world knows it, lasts forever, long after the feelings you call love fade with the passing of time. I have a love for chocolate but that does not mean we should get married, as my chocolate and I are simply not compatible, and I cannot expect the law to be changed to make others believe that the love that I feel for my chocolate is the same as the love that they feel for a fellow human being.

  15. Miriam English

    Chris, you echo the discredited notion that children raised in a home with gay parents somehow suffer. In fact children of gay couples do better on average than those of hetero parents. And they don’t merely do better scholastically, but emotionally too.

    You also misunderstand how gay couples love. It isn’t about sex and it isn’t about one of the women trying to be the man of the relationship or one of the men trying to be the woman of the relationship. They are simply themselves. Despite Hollywood clichés half of each lesbian couple is not butch and half of each gay male couple is not a queen. Most gay people act perfectly normal and you almost certainly know many gay people that you would not suspect are gay. They are just people.

    Who are you to get on your high horse wanting to restrict their right to love and marry? You’re correct that marriage is not entirely about love. It is also about human rights. In many cases gay couples will live their entire adult lives together and remain faithfully devoted to their partners, but mean, small-minded bigots will say to them that they can’t visit their partner on their death bed in the hospital because they are not family (not married), or that the surviving partner of an accident loses their home because it defaults to family, and they haven’t been allowed to marry. What kind of hard-hearted person thinks this way? And what damn business is it of yours anyway?

    I can’t understand why so many religious people are so obscenely eager to make marriage about hate, when it should be about love.

  16. Miriam English

    The way so many religious people think they are entitled to pontificate on what they should allow gay people to do reminds me infuriatingly of the way so many men think they should be able to decide what women can be allowed to do with their own bodies.

    The small-minded arrogance, ignorance and injustice is exasperating!

  17. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    When the rust belt Trump supporters start to lose their houses sooner rather than later coz Trump reversed Obama’s Dodd–Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act, Trump’s populist vote will nose-dive.

    This will send strong reverberations through conservative circles in the western world and I can’t wait to see them all disintegrate in terror.

  18. margcal

    As you say yourself, Chris, “the topic of discussion is MARRIAGE”. Exactly.
    PARENTHOOD (to match your caps) is a different topic again.

  19. Deanna Jones

    Chris, you are being really offensive. So what about kids who lose a parent through death? Are they doomed? This whole “a mother and a father” thing is such white western functionalist garbage.

    JMS sorry I never answered you on the fated Yemen thread. I work full time and am limited when it comes to posting during the week. The comments appear to be turned off now.

  20. Jennifer Meyer-Smith


  21. Christine Farmer

    Absolutely, Miriam English. Why don’t people just mind their own businesses? Precisely what is the so-called Christian objection to same-sex marriage? I say “so-called” because there seems to be very little that’s Christian, as I understand it, in the attitude of those making sweeping, bigoted, and frequently misinformed statements about the way some people want to live their lives.

    I am so fed up with the many members of the present federal government who purport to be Christian, yet can behave so appallingly. Do they ever measure their actions against their religious beliefs, and if not, why not? Or is religion just for Sundays, and mustn’t be allowed to pollute the business of (mis)governing the country?

    And all this rubbish about a plebiscite- these people were elected to govern, and are paid large amounts to do so. They should do what they are paid for.

  22. Miriam English

    Christine Farmer, when pressed upon this, many Christians will fall back on their Bibles as justification for their prejudice, citing verses that seem to prohibit gay sex between men (it doesn’t actually restrict lesbians). However when you mention other verses such as the prohibition of cutting hair (elsewhere it prohibits men from having long hair so men are in a bit of a quandary), prohibition of shaving beards, prohibition of wearing fabrics made of more than one thread, prohibition of eating pigs (pork, ham, bacon), prohibition of eating shellfish, prohibition of people with defects going to church, prohibition of accumulating money and personal possessions, and so on — when you mention these they either become strangely silent or else somehow decide that those verses of their eternally correct Bible no longer apply. Only the parts that fit their prejudices apply nowadays. Strange how that works.

  23. harshmind

    Chris, it’s probably not a good day to both claim to be Christian and also to opine about what is right for others. The revelations given light by the Royal Commission suggest that a lot of so-called Christianity is about exerting control over the less fortunate or vulnerable. The charitable view is that we should all be free to explore our capacity for love… as long it does no harm to others. Being raised differently is not innately harmful or wrong.

  24. Miriam English

    You can safely assume you have created God in your own image when it turns out that God hates all the same people you do.
    — Anne Lamott

  25. Chris

    There is no such thing as the perfect Christian, and I should know that more than anyone else after getting kicked out of church, simply because I got involved with a woman to whom I’m not married. We all make mistakes and it’s impossible to be perfect all of the time, but unfortunately for some there is not forgiveness in the churches these days. And the Christians in politics are no different than anyone else, but because they’re in the spotlight everything they do is more noticeable. But not one of us Christians are required to be perfect, as none of us are, not even the pope. And yet we’re commanded to express the views of our Lord as shown in the bible, not because of us, as nothing we say should ever be our opinion, but because of God as everything we say should be taken from his Word and as I said just before, not from ourselves, so that others may not judge for we are but messengers. And it’s only a concern when people add to God’s Word or say what they believe to be true when in fact it is not and contrary to scripture. Religion in itself is only as good as the people that follow it, and there is the problem, none of us are as good as we’d like to believe. And we will even go to the extreme of changing the law to make our behaviour more acceptable to others, solely because it’s something we want, which has been seen by many, religious or not to be inappropriate behaviour for hundreds of years, regardless of gender.

  26. Miriam English

    Chris (I assume you’re a different person than the other Chris who commented earlier), so does this mean you have long hair, full beard, don’t eat pig or kalimari, you approve of slavery, think it’s proper to stone a person to death for what YOU did, that death is the appropriate punishment for working on the Sabbath and for children who talk back to their parents, and that you don’t have money or possessions? After all, these are the things your God commands.

    Also, I wonder exactly what you mean by “what’s seen by many as… inappropriate behaviour for hundreds of years”.

  27. Chris

    no, the same person as before, but people assumed that I was claiming to be perfect when in fact I am not, nor required to be in order to convey the will of our Lord to the people, which I myself struggle to follow just so you know. But much of what you speak is only recorded in the old testament scriptures and no longer applies to the people of the new testamen, which is lucky for me else I’d be stoned. Though the morals of God (unlike the morals of Man) do not change over time, and are still applicable even today as recorded in the new testament scriptures that cover many sins, including the practice of homosexuality, not being homosexual in itself, but rather the practice of engaging in homosexual relations with someone who is equal in gender. And I know it’s not fair, as I have fallen prey to the sin of adultery and fully understand that we cannot always control our feelings for others, but it’s only our actions that make it a sin. But some things we do cannot be undone, and there is not much forgiveness from the churches of God, not even within themselves as I have found out. Sometimes the enemy is the church you attend, not the God that you serve.

  28. Miriam English

    Chris, see, this is what puzzles me. You say that the Old Testament no longer applies, yet Jesus says very clearly in the New Testament that all the old laws still apply (I’ve forgotten where it is, but can find it if you doubt it). I’ve never been able to find any reason for the common (mis)perception by Christians that the Old Testament no longer applies. But if you’re right that the Old Testament no longer applies then there goes your only real reason for prejudice against gays. The New Testament has a couple of passages that are often misinterpreted to apply to gays, but are more correctly related to licentious sexual promiscuity.

    So either the crazy Old Testament applies with all its loopy laws, or it doesn’t and gays shouldn’t be discriminated against.

  29. LOVO

    One wonders why Christians don’t follow Judaism…after all Jesus was Jewish…that was his religion…that was his belief..that was how he lived; a Nazarin sect, Jewish life. If one wanted to follow Jesus’s path wouldn’t one also want to believe in the religion that Jesus followed….or would one be more comfortable with Henry the VIII’s grandson, King James I version instead….jest a matter of faith I guess….’nough said…………………………….and yet..!!!

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