Friday 12 February 2016
1 The day has finally arrived. Barnaby Joyce has become Deputy Prime Minister of Australia. Now we have a Prime Minister who firmly believes in a Republic, equality in marriage and the science of Climate Change and a deputy who does not. The intellectual gap between them is of sagacious proportion.
It is said of Barnaby that he is the best retail salesman in Australia. I would suggest the public sees him as a person of mockery. It’s not so much his ocker image. After all, Hawke and Keating had colourful turns of phrase. It’s the depth of comprehension. The understanding of things beyond politics.
It seems incredible that a man who was one of the principle instigators in 2009 of the downfall of the then opposition leader can now be his deputy.
It also seems implausible that a Senator who has crossed the floor to vote against his party on 19 occasions can now lead it.
Remember what Joyce said about mining Antarctica in 2006. He went there for a month and came back spruiking the beauty of it:
’The vastness of nature itself’.
We staked a claim to a large part of it and signed an agreement not to mine it. Then he suggested on the ABC that we should:
‘We can really realise that [mining’s] the game … or we can stick our head in the snow’.
‘Do I turn my head and allow another country to exploit my resource … or do I position myself in such a way as I’m going to exploit it myself before they get there’ said Barnaby
In the same year Barnaby opposed the new wonder drug Gardasil for the treatment of cervical cancer. The drug is now common place and is administered to boys and girls in their first year of high school.
Barnaby opposed it because of:
‘The psychological implications or the social implications’.
‘There might be an overwhelming (public) backlash from people saying ‘don’t you dare put something out there that gives my 12-year-old daughter a license to be promiscuous’
It gets worse. On Climate Change, when he was a Senator he said, despite all the science, that he had:
‘Serious doubt about our ability to change the climate” and that “the climate change debate is an ongoing debate’.
In 2010 he said he didn’t believe that global warming is as bad as everyone says.
‘Why do I say that … not because I have the factual premise to debunk them on the science’ Barnaby explained.
Then he said that Climate Change was:
‘An indulgent and irrelevant debate because, even if climate changes turns out to exist one day, we will have absolutely no impact on it whatsoever’.
It doesn’t finish there. When he was asked about being identified as a climate denier he answered:
‘The whole terms repugnant. Climate change denier, like Holocaust denier … ’
On the subject of abortion he tends to lecture women. Whatever your view on the subject in Australia the topic is generally treated with caution by politicians.
In 2004 speaking to Mark Colvin he said. He’s:
‘Pro-life, unashamedly pro-life’ and that his ‘personal philosophy is anti-abortion’.
In 2005 he said that his greatest achievement would be to:
‘Stop abortion … The slavery debate of our time’ he was ‘philosophically opposed’ to Medicare paying for abortions.
He said that using the RU486 drug was like an act of murder:
‘So if I shoot a woman in the abdomen and do not kill her but kill the baby, I have not actually committed a crime’ Barnaby argued before the Community Affairs Legislation committee.
The absurdity of this statement was pointed out at the time by Women’s Electoral Lobby ACT convenor Rosyln Dundas who commented:
‘No, you actually have committed a crime by shooting a woman’.
He also gloated about being instrumental in the rolling of the then opposition leader Malcolm Turnbull.
Leadership demands more than just a ‘retail’ personality. It requires, in the sense of leading a country, a deep insightful world view. Anyone who has seen Joyce on a Q&A panel with guests who present an understanding of life in all its variances will acknowledge that he has not the capacity to appreciate life beyond politics. He is like Abbott, caught in a world that the rest of us have left far behind.
And so we have as Deputy PM the man who said a roast would cost $100 under Labor’s Carbon tax and who, when Finance Minister said Australia would default on its debt. The then Reserve bank Governor at the time said he was unfit for the job.
We deserve better.
2 Continuing on from yesterday and I promise you this is true. Greg Hunt, the man some people refer to as the Environment Minister in Opposition advocated for the protection of the Tasmania Tiger, extinct since 1936.
In Government he turned his attention to the Antarctic Walrus – population: zero. Walruses live in the Northern Hemisphere.
Asked where the Paris deal left Australia’s climate change policy, the expert adviser to the former government Professor Ross Garnaut said:
“Exactly where it was before the US-China announcement – up shit creek.”
3 Regardless of whether Stuart Robert resigns, or is forced to won’t make any difference to the dodgy way in which political parties elicit donations and influence law making and policy.
4 The Guardian is reporting that the Catholic Church is telling newly appointed bishops that it is ‘not necessarily’ their duty to report accusations of clerical child abuse and that only victims or their families should make the decision to report abuse to police.
What a morally bankrupt institution is the Catholic Church. After many years of constant disclosure of worldwide systemic abuse of children, we now find that they are no further advanced in protecting children. No wonder they are losing parishioners in the tens of thousands worldwide.
5 That’s enough for today. I have to go shopping. I promised my wife a gold Rolex for her birthday. I’m not faking either.
My thought for the day.
‘Love is when there is an irresistible urge for the need of the affection of another and the irresistibility is of its nature mutual. It has no gender‘.