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George Christensen and other secrets. What do you think?

We are all aware of the rorting of expenses by our politicians. Who can forget Bronwyn Bishop’s famous helicopter rides, or George Brandis and his bookshelves? Or Joe Hockey’s claiming expenses for staying overnight in houses his wife owned or Susan Ley’s claiming travel expenses for private business.

And what about the Finance Minister Senator Cormann chartering private planes to take him home?

Independent Australia disclosed more of this rorting in an article by Belinda Jones titled; “Out of Control Expenses claims made by Federal politicians.”

The list goes on of course but when a politician is elected on a generous salary and spends much of his time outside the country, well, that takes rorting the system to a whole new level. A reprehensible one.

He is a bit of an oddball is George Christensen. Wikipedia tells us that he is a vocal supporter of the sugar industry and has rejected policies such as a tax on sugar-sweetened beverages aimed at reducing obesity.

He has likened the climate change debate to a science fiction film plot, but says “alarmist” claims are more comedic than frightening.

He has previously stated that Australia was “at war” with Islam. In July 2015, speaking at a rally held by far-right group Reclaim Australia — which infamously held a 10th “anniversary” for the 2005 Cronulla race riots — Christensen said: “we would be foolishly naive to think that we are not at war with radical Islam.”

“On 20 September 2017, Christensen moved a motion to ban the burqa at the National Party’s annual conference in Canberra. The motion was voted down 51 votes to 55, with Christensen saying he would continue to advocate for the policy.”

A joint investigation between Nine News, Sydney Morning Herald and The Age alleges that Mr Christensen visited an adult bar called ‘Ponytails’ in the Philippines, and that:

Ponytails bartender Marjorie Lamsen told the organisations Mr Christensen was a “very regular visitor” to the venue. “He was always very good … he was a big spender,” she said.

And:

The bar manager of the night spot, which identifies itself as an “adult entertainment service”, said Mr Christensen did not reveal he was a politician and alleged his “weakness” was women.

I have read that he recently completed a degree in divinity enabling him to preach the gospel of Christ but the latest news has him frequenting the very best adult entertainment bars in the Philippines.

He has previously stated that his frequent trips to Asia before meeting her was for church and charity work.

Many fellow parliamentarians now call the ‘Member for Manila’ because of his frequent travel to the region, including an astonishing 28 trips in a four-year period.

These allegations have surfaced in the mainstream media from time to time over the past few years even suggesting that George spent 300 days in the Philippines between 2014 and 2018. Now that’s a fair amount of time away from his electorate on the taxpayer. Apparently he met his now wife April Asuncion at Ponytails in 2017. We learn that:

Nine News, The Age and The Herald have seen documents, which suggest Ms Asuncion was an employee at the Ponytails bar.

Now, normally you would think that with so many rorting scandals behind them that political parties would wake up. How does a member of the House of Representatives get to spend 300 days holidaying (or) doing whatever one does at these places without being found out?

It is important to say that the AFP has concluded that Christensen hasn’t broken any law. Although they have said that he had compromised himself to foreign interests.

The problem here isn’t that of breaking the law but of the character and behaviour of the man involved.

“Character is a combination of traits that etch the outlines of a life, governing moral choices and infusing personal and professional conduct. It’s an elusive thing, easily cloaked or submerged by the theatrics of politics. But unexpected moments can sometimes reveal the fibres from which it is woven.”

He has obviously not represented his electorate in a manner befitting his office. Has the leader of his party reprimanded him? It would seem not, although both (then Prime Minister) Turnbull and National’s leader McCormack were both briefed by the AFP. McCormack apparently told Christensen to stop travelling overseas and focus on his marginal electorate only after he was elected leader.

At the last election – despite his constituents being in full knowledge of his escapades to the Philippines – returned him with an increased margin of 11.2 per cent.

Has the parliamentary committee who oversee such matters questioned him?

I mean, surely, you cannot get away with having 300 days away from the job on full pay without any consequences. Although judging by the inaction of anyone and everyone, you can.

George, the in-depth Christian, has decided to block the release of key documents about the federal police probe into his frequent travels.

Secrecy is fast turning into an art form with this extremely conservative and very right-wing government.

What sort of democracy are we? We are not allowed to know about the Lambie secret deal or the content of the Taylor emails; nor the circumstances of the secret trial jailing of witness J or the contents of an AFP report about George Christensen; and we are not allowed to know why Pastor Houston isn’t allowed into the White House. Why?

This government takes our right to know what they are doing very lightly.

Less informed voters, unfortunately, outnumber the more politically aware. Therefore, conservatives feed them all the bullshit they need. And the menu generally contains a fair portion of untruths.

My thought for the day

If we are to save our democracy we might begin by asking that at the very least our politicians should be transparent and tell the truth.

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21 comments

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  1. Roscoe

    I wonder if he used Westpac? from the Guardian: The AFP investigation was prompted by the discovery of large amounts of money being sent overseas by the MP

  2. whatever

    The country is being run by the same third-rate nobody’s who are usually elected to run the local RSL.
    Corrupt and misanthropic in outlook, they are either unaware or contemptuous of the democratic nature of public administration.

  3. Wat Tyler

    ‘What sort of democracy are we in?’
    Not a meritocracy, that’s clear.
    The people of Queensland gifted us the least competent and most dishonest government I have ever seen in this country – of any stripe. And that this bloated oaf got a positive swing (as did the appalling ‘Thumper’ Dutton) at the election is possibly the greatest indictment against the people of Queensland, who continue to give power to what is not only an awful government but a cadre of some of the vilest human beings in the country despite many of them being utterly unworthy to represent ANYBODY.
    What sort of democracy are we in?
    Clearly the sort we deserve. Because Queenslanders are ‘us’.

  4. Keitha Granville

    Starting to look more and more like the government of the Four Star party with leader Vivienne Rooke (SBS Years and Years – if you haven’t watched it, do, and be very afraid)

    We don’t have a democracy any longer. We think we do, they pretend we do. But the MPs make all their own arrangements once elected and we don’t matter a jot. Until the next election.

  5. Terence Mills

    Keitha

    What a brilliant series and how poignant on asylum seekers : lock them away out of sight out of mind and hope that overcrowding breeds disease and they all die or go back to where they came from – did they look for input on the script from P Dutton ?.

    For those who haven’t seen this series, Emma Thompson plays Vivienne Rook an outspoken ‘woman of the people’ who becomes prime minister based on racist slogans and prejudice – Pauline Hanson anyone.

  6. Arthur Tarry

    Why would anyone vote for Christensen and Dutton, and a cast of others? And in increasing numbers!
    What’s going on in the mind of these people? Anything?

  7. Jack Cade

    We, in this country and throughout the Western democracies, are in the kind of social situation that prompted the rise of the unions. But we have allowed the scum that we have collectively elected over the last half-century to convince us that trades unions are toxic and bad for society.
    The wheel is not yet turning, and the major difference is that the media supports oligarchies and global enterprises. There is no ‘media of the people’ to tell the truth. There are now hordes of families reliant upon the modern equivalent of soup kitchens, and an increasing number of beggars. George Christensen is the perfect example of the contempt politicians have for the people, and his continued election proves that they are justified in their contempt.
    I suggest you read the writings of Marx and Engels on the treatment of the masses by authorities in 19th century Britain, and tell me I am wrong.

  8. Aortic

    I have long advocated, apart from the PM Foreign Minister and other agreed frontbenchers that travel expenses for the rest be a fixed amount for the financial year and once expended no more until the following year. Far too easy to say it is within guidelines or sorry and pay it back. These numpties certainly do not know how torun a country but they sure know how to rort the system.

  9. Phil Pryor

    Let anyone masturbate physically, a matter of drive and choice, but, the big mental masturbators getting relief and drive and courage and satisfaction are the nazi types on the right wing of coercion and tyranny, loudmouths, sluts for money, career, position, face. Fat George is an evil and rotten fantasiser, able to feel important by filthy diversion and self satisfying delusions. The whole Australian conservative movement is a political bowel full of excremental distorted crap, aiming, with the help of the revolting Murdoch, to crush reality, science, thought, investigation, honesty, foresight, planning and progress for childish, selfish, dishonest, careerist goals. But we are reduced, the nation is impoverished, truth is distorted, all by a negative, incrowd, triumphal, supremacist class of iggy idiots.

  10. Sir Scotchmistery

    Who is customer 12? Is it dear chubby little boof head George?

    I have a mental picture of my days in primary school when all the girls had pony tails.

    I wonder what chaps would find particularly appealing about a bar named for a fashion statement made by 10 year old girls.

    I wonder whether he might offer guidance to his dear little voters, with their badly grazed knuckles from walking across the road to the pub from their utes.

    Where would be leave his dog when he popped off to check what’s happening in his other Office?

  11. Andrew J Smith

    It’s all fine and ethical because he is a Christian, supported by other Christians.

    Same in the US where evangelical Christians disapproved of Bill Clinton’s behaviour but approve of Trump’s because he is both Christian and ‘the chosen one’.

    Theologian Chris Hedges describes it as ‘unethical Christianity’; one would add a political strategy allowing democratic and societal standards to be bypassed.

  12. Vikingduk

    Phil Pryor, every word is, shamefully, disgustingly true.

  13. wam

    Where the bloody hell are you labor?
    The bastards have spent years vilifying the unemployed from memory of 50 years ago when a few on welfare rorted the system.
    They legislate to prevent pensioners from living overseas to maximise their pension. At the same time giving christenson $500 a day to spend in the bars of the Philippines.
    Somethings crook in Tallarook Albo billy missed i. How are you going????
    Funny that george got a +0.32 and labor -12.48% Wow what gave such a drop?? Thanks, boobby.
    ps
    Sad to see you are back on truth, lord.
    Are you talking about your truth or george;s truth or the media truth.via nine news, the age the herald (3 sources or 1 three times lord??)
    Seems that you have a problem with understanding how politicians can lie by telling the truth’. Don chipp got it right with his good old fashioned words ‘keep the bastards honest’,
    Honesty was important then and essential now.
    pps keitha how cynical or someone so young.

  14. Helen Jennings

    Hello John
    As to be expected you have delivered another succinct and informative opinion on the mire of deceit, corruption and hypocrisy that constitutes this fascist lnp.
    I have no judgemental opinions about george’s wife, however I judge and condemn georgey boy for his lies, arrogance, hypocrisy and sense of entitlement.
    What I would like to know is how easy was it for georgey boy to marry and bring his wife to Australia? Is she a resident, does she have citizenship, did dutton and his department make this an easy transition? The reason I ask is because I have friends from Asia and Philipines who have had stressful, expensive and frustrating experiences gaining citizenship/residency for their spouses…both male and female and nothing has been easy. If there is behind the scenes corruption in this situation it has nothing to do with his wife who deserves to stay here….but it has everything to do with the governing of Australia by these”christians”, scummo, georgey, scabbott, the nazi from SA who joined One Nation, etc.
    The majority of the voting public need to get smart and open their minds and stop their apathetic world view and begin to understand what they are responsible for……the decline of the Australian culture and our respect and pride.

  15. Pete Petrass

    What it all boils down to is FACISM.

  16. Patagonian

    Georgy Porgy has a few weaknesses – women, food and massive hypocrisy (see his comments on the ‘evil’ of abortion. Quite happy to exploit desperate young women though. How Christian is that, Christensen?).

    https://www.acl.org.au/2019_fedelec_qld_candidate_gchristensen#splash-signup

    In regard to the burqa it should be made compulsory in his case so I don’t have to have my sensibilities offended by his fat ugly face or his fat ugly body.

  17. John Lord

    Good question Helen.

  18. Sir Scotchmistery

    I agree and would add to Helen’s question, whether the young lady in question has previously been married and has she previously borne children thus proving she is capable of continuing George’s somewhat eclectic line.

    In terms of the “people” who vote for him, I’m surprised those types remember to breathe.

  19. mick Loughlin

    Our media can usually handle a can of worms, the problem now with this regime is the can is more like a forty four gallon drum.

  20. Kathryn

    George not-so-Christensen makes Jabba the Hutt look like Fabio Lanzoni by comparison! I guess someone who is so indescribably repulsive, fat and ugly needs to travel first class to the Philippines in order to purchase some poor, vulnerable and anonymous sex partner. That may be understandable – even forgivable – if it wasn’t for the FACT that this greasy, totally corrupt, non-achieving CAREER PARASITE is using and ABUSING taxpayer funds to do it! Christensen is an appalling aberration and swaggering, waddling PROOF of the unspeakable depravity the moronic, knuckle-dragging and entitled fascists in the LNP (particularly the red neck Queensland Nationals) have sunk to.

    If you want even MORE proof of the LNP’s ongoing and increasing level of astounding rorting, breathtaking waste and criminal abuse of taxpayer funds, click on the link below – it is a MONSTROUS example of where all those countless MILLIONS of taxpayer funds have gone that the LNP have defunded from our fire fighters, our education, Medicare, our taxpayer-owned ABC and the billions taken from every social welfare program (either defunded into oblivion or shut down) ….

    https://independentaustralia.net/politics/politics-display/out-of-control-expenses-claims-made-by-federal-politicians,12227

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