This time I want to discuss the seemingly ridiculous idea that Scott Morrison’s dog has a column in the Errograph. One may think that the obsequious propaganda (or stupidity) has reached new heights: the First Dog has a newspaper column. But all is not as it seems.
Dog Column, Part One: Lazy Scott?
The Daily Errorgraph is a well-known vehicle of COALition propaganda: the bias simply drips off the page. I do not have the link to the article this time but someone in my household buys this rag and I took a photo of the ‘piece’.
The first section of note is this little gem
Someone says they have a big important job running the country and then you are locked down with them and you realise just how much time they spend making cups of tea, playing sudoku and watching Cronulla Sharks highlights on YouTube
Did you catch it? Joke column or not, this is quite excoriating of the Prime Minister. He is not working, running zoom calls, or indeed doing anything to earn the more than $550,000 per year his job apparently warrants. Rather, he is watching his beloved sharkies on YouTube and doing puzzles. Hardworking man our Prime Minister is the clear message.
Dog Column, Part Two: Scotty from Marketing
The column then moves on to make a joke about Morrison’s perhaps overblown cheering for Ash Barty. As the piece puts it
So already he [Morrison] was tired the next morning when Jen suggested he go out and clean up the verandah instead of spending all that time on his phone updating his Twitter account and congratulating Ash [Barty]
It is easy to see this as a dig at Morrison using sport as a distraction from his various shortcomings. Whether it is cricket, the sharkies, or Ash Barty, the Prime Minister has often hidden behind sport. The idea seems to be that everyone can agree sport is awesome for some reason. Sorry Scumo, but I for one can mentally multitask you mental midget. Even the Errograph can see through his crap. Something has clearly changed.
Dog Column, Part Three: The Greatest Hits
The criticism of the Prime Minister continues with this slap to the face reference to Morrison and the bushfires. Referring to cleaning up the mess on the verandah, which the dog partially takes credit for, Morrison is quoted as snapping at Jen saying
I don’t hold a hose, Jen
Jesus christ. Trouble in paradise (and I do not mean in the Morrison marriage). That line could well serve as Morrison’s political epitaph. It portrays him as an out-of-touch elitist for whom mundane tasks are the work of lower-status people. For this to be printed in the Errorgraph of all places speaks volumes about the evident breakdown of the relationship between the Prime Minister and the man who truly runs Australia.
The column then proceeds to criticise Mr. Morrison with a clear dig at his temper with this line
Anyone would think he was tackling the press corps rather than a request from the cheese and kisses
That references not only Mr. Morrison’s temper but his adversarial (to say the least) relationship with members of the press who dare to criticise him. This column has not been subtle so far, but it saves the best for last.
Dog Column, Part Four: A Real Jab
The hits just keep on coming. The final topic is vaccinations, and it packs a punch. After Jen says that Morrison should get the dog vaccinated, the hound says
As a dog, I am a strict anti-vaxxer myself so I was heartened to hear Scott arguing that with the tight border controls around Sydney’s lower north shore there was no rush to get me vaccinated. Apparently he felt happy leaving me needle-free until after the election.
Somewhat speaks for itself, no? No rush to get him vaccinated? This fuels speculation that there will be a sudden influx of vaccines prior to the calling of an election. This is not subtle and really leaves the Prime Minister hanging.
Continuing, Jen says
“You were supposed to get this [dog shots] sorted last year, Scott,” Jen said furiously. “You only had one job and you messed it up”
That was a two-by-four to the face. The Errorgraph is not messing around here. This is also the first true thing this rag has printed in some time if we ignore the date on the front page and the price of the paper. Before digging a little deeper into what I think is going on here, the last few lines are worthy of note
“Come on Buddy, time for a run on the lawn” said Scott, grabbing the ball and heading out through the verandah doors. He loves throwing the ball for me and then trying to get it first.
“Remember Buddy” he said, tossing the ball. “It’s not a race”
Stop it! He’s already dead. Not a race? There are no words here. Of all the things this column shows, the most brazen is that Murdoch could criticise Scott Morrison (accurately we should note – all of this is true) but that he chooses not to.
There is perhaps more truth in the phrase ‘COALition propaganda rag’ than I first thought. As much praise as this and other Murdoch rags have heaped on Morrison, he himself is not the target. Murdoch is not defending Morrison as an individual, but rather the Liberal Party as a brand.
So long as Morrison served the agenda of keeping the Liberal Party in power, he was defended and provided with propaganda. Now that his sheer incompetence and other foibles threaten the Party’s grip on power, Rupe has seemingly turned on Morrison. It says much about the dishonesty of the Australian Montgomery Burns that the criticism was published anonymously.
‘Scomo’s Miracle’ was the Errograph front-page headline after the 2019 election. Rupe’s decision to turn on Morrison now, after the legion of scandals that has plagued him for much of his term, does suggest that an election is forthcoming. Given that the two likely alternatives (Spud – Dutton and Friesenburger – Frydenburg) are each about as popular as hundreds and thousands in a braille book, Rupe’s next move should be interesting.
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