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Government by Gobbledygook!

Attorney Alan Dershowitz, a member of President Donald Trump’s defence team, in the US Senate impeachment trial convinced the Republicans that presidents cannot be removed from office for an action they believe could help get them reelected. His actual words were :

“Every public official that I know believes that his election is in the public interest,” he said. “And if a president does something which he believes will help him get elected in the public interest, that cannot be the kind of quid pro quo that results in impeachment.”

It’s much the same argument that Vladimir Putin uses to convince Russians that making him President for Life is in the public interest and thus must be a good thing for the country.

It’s not a new argument, it’s been used by dictators and demagogues through the centuries to sand down the rough edges of democracy and create an entirely new reality.

Sidenote : I looked up demagogue just to see what it actually means : a political leader who seeks support by appealing to the desires and prejudices of ordinary people rather than by using rational argument. How very appropriate in the prevailing political climate.

Scott Morrison’s political advisers have been watching events in the US with increasing interest and excitement and adapting Trumpisms to suit their arguments. They used it in the pork barrelling episode to convince us that, as they had decided it was in the nation’s interests to re-elect a coalition government then, it followed that marginal seats needed to be Bolstered – a marginal seat evidently is one where female athletes get changed behind the bike-shed and thus they need a new swimming pool – simple as that as Morrison has been patiently explaining to perplexed journalists

The nub of this argument flows from the initial in principle decision : to get yourself or your spouse elected. Thus, when Angus Taylor fed into the media arena spurious information about massive travel overspending by Sydney City Council and its mayor Clover Moore, it didn’t matter that the information had been manufactured and forged documents used to support it. What did matter was that you inflict maximum damage on the SCC and its mayor so that your Missus gets a clear run to take over at the next local council election : i.e. it’s in the public interest.

Incidentally gobbledygook is defined as : language that is meaningless or is made unintelligible by excessive use of technical terms. When I read that, I immediately thought of Josh Frydenberg who talks constantly of paying down Labors debt legacy having himself presided over an increase in government debt by some 250% since coming to office.

Abraham Lincoln, in the Gettysburg Address, had a slightly different approach when it came to his understanding of what democracy meant. He suggested that a governing principle should be government of the people, by the people, for the people.

But, hey isn’t that socialism ? That’s your starting point to blow-up the whole system – just ask Barnaby.

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7 comments

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  1. Phil Pryor

    Lincoln was always more correct in simple language than most have ever been. Social democracy is his way, government of, by and for the people. But, we have lost control as people, where we should all be called to participate by a rotating and regular system of political choice and action. No career politicians should be allowed. Experienced, trained, qualified, superior academic public servants should head and fill departments for the actuation of policy, but people’s committees need to be the core of social democracy. Today we have bought and rented sluts, big thieving amoral and unethical corporations, machine men (and some women) who exploit all this with excessive reward, often for naked failure. We have political and corporate decision makers who kill and main and thieve by their orders and decisions. If a Lincoln inspired system of participatory social democracy were established, it would be a great, decent improvement on the scheming, thieving, raving, aggressive sluts for money and power that we have too often. End bribery and corruption.

  2. Aortic

    ” Beware the leader who bangs the drums of war in order to whip the citizenry into a patriotic fervour, for patriotism is indeed a double edged sword. It both emboldens the blood just as it narrows the mind.

    And when the drums of war have reached a fever pitch and the blood boils with hate and the mind has closed, the leader will have no need in seizing the rights of citizenry. Rather the citizenry, infused with fear and blinded by patriotism, will offer up all their rights unto the leader and gladly so.

    How do I know? For this is what I have done.”

    AND I AM CAESAR.

  3. New Bruce

    Scottyfrommarketing should beware the Ides of March

  4. New England Cocky

    Government gobbledegook is defeated by logical argument, and when that gets tiring because you are talking to climate change deniers or paid up members of the Nazianal$ (not many of those left thanks to the passing of time) then revert to simply trash talking any point that cannot be answered or can easily be denied.

    Damn it Phil Pryor, you are talking sense when your audience are borne to rule Nazianal$ who cannot see beyond the end of their nose and believe that the best view of the future is found by standing with your legs apart, putting your head between your knees and looking up!!

  5. Phil Pryor

    …looking up at the faces (or worse) of corporate controller benefactors. (You are too eloquent to be a real Barnaby, Cocky.) What I said is a little sketch from old days of comment, but very suitable as a way forward socially and politically. But, how?

  6. wam

    The verb:
    ‘Rhetorically exploit (an issue) for political purposes in a way calculated to appeal to the desires and prejudices of ordinary people.’
    The ordinary people trump seeks, as a demagogue, believe the gettysburg address is where the president lives.
    Such idiocy explains average ammoricans (and the australites.who were frightened by the slogans, palmer’s splash of cash and boobby’a women.)
    The extent of power of the ‘demagoguery’ is the twits don’t elect judges but can terminate a judge that is a primary case for one style of demagogue behaviour to get appointed and another to stay in power.
    However the pelosi democrats spin it trump did nothing inconsistent with normal practice.

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