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John Howard “hardened the hearts of many Australians”

By Tony Dewberry

How is it newsworthy that a retired politician was heckled in the street? Is ours a society where deference is demanded by the rulers from the ruled?

John Howard represents, for me, everything that is hateful, cruel and stupid about Australia. He hardened the hearts of many Australians against the legitimate rights of asylum seekers.

He ordered Australian troops on to the Norwegian vessel the Tampa to kidnap and imprison those fleeing persecution.

He sent troops into Aboriginal communities in the Northern Territory. Howard committed us to wars in the Middle East that have turned into endless bloodbaths. He tried to break our union movement.

This shows that with power you can command many things, but power cannot command respect, which must always be given freely.

Should I outlive Howard I will be part of the opposition to giving him a state funeral and, I promise, no matter how old I am I will be part of the protest should such a state funeral go ahead.

He was such a key player in so many of the changes that make me grieve for the country I grew up in.


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  1. Jaquix

    He also altered the original intent of superannuation, by turning it into a tax haven for the rich. He seemed to be enjoying the attention of the protest, didnt seem to do anything to avoid it.

  2. Vikingduk

    Yes agree completely. That lying little rodent is responsible for politics of hate that seems to rule society.

    I look forward to pissing on his grave. What a revolting shit of a human is Howard.

  3. billshaw2013

    Horrible man, very un Australian , father of Abbott, wasted the economic good times.

  4. Photontrace

    History will not be kind to former Australian Prime Minister John Howard.

  5. silkworm

    Did he know that the cameras would be trained on him when he joined in that march? Surely this was an attempt to commandeer the media. Perhaps he was intending to provoke a reaction from the marchers in the hope that it could be turned to the political advantage of the government.

  6. Stevie Christy

    The International Monetary Fund (IMF) examined 200 years of government financial records across 55 leading economies.

    The study found Australia’s most wasteful spending took place under the Howard-led Coalition rather than under Whitlam, Rudd or Gillard Labor governments.

    The IMF identifies two periods of Australian “fiscal profligacy”, both during John Howard’s term in office – in 2003, at the start of the mining boom, and during his final years in office between 2005 and 2007.

    According to Tony Abbott, these were the “Howard golden years”. Mr Abbott recently said “prudent fiscal management is in the Coalition’s DNA”. The facts suggest otherwise.

  7. guest

    Some media called the protestors “goons”. They were admonished for giving Howard the raspberry. They did not say why Howard was jeered.

    We see it the ABCC which Turnbull dared use as a trigger for the double dissolution which nearly cost Turnbull the election, made his position very tenuous and completely scrambled the possibility of a compliant Senate. What we see is Workchoices returned to stifle and exploit working people.

    I suggest that the jeering will not stop any time soon.

  8. brickbob

    So Howard ” just happened” to be walking down the same road as the ” Union thugs” according to the presstitute media at the same time,well who would have thunk it hey!.. what a coincidence, what are the odds on that one might ask.

    I am sick of being treated like an ignoramus by the conservatives and the bloody media,and of course it was a set up two days before the WA election where Barnett stands a good chance of being kicked to the footpath for incompetence .

  9. Susan

    John Howard represented the lowest form of of society and then proceeded to destroy everything great about our country.

  10. Wayne Turner

    Spot on article. The decay of this country started with Howard – THE serial liar,encouraged the “me me society”,demonized asylum seekers,bashing of the unemployed egs: introduced the failure non job providers,centrelink and slaves for the dole,,got us involved in Iraq,wasted the mining boom with bribes,introduced a BIG NEW TAX,bashed and weakened workers unions,workchoices….

  11. jimhaz

    i had very little interest in politics before Howard. It was his underlying “greed is good” belief system represented in his policy outcomes that made me look closer at what the LNP were all about. It is this greed that has been one of the major factors in the hardening of our hearts.

  12. lawrencewinder

    Small-minded, unimaginative, regressive, the antitheses of Liberalism.

  13. Ill fares the land

    I agree – but I am afraid the malaise is deeper.

    I think under Howard (The Rat according to Canberra folklore), and his insufferable dolt sidekick Costello, the sense of entitlement and personal selfishness was really cemented into Australian culture.

    This has, I think and at least in part, provided the detritus upon which maggots like Hanson feed – a fear that we are not getting everything we are “entitled” to and the reason we are “missing out” are the indigenous, the poor, the unemployed and the disabled who are getting so much – and we are all paying for them. This, I think is a reason (not necessarily the sole reason) that the “opinion” based nonsensical utterances of Hanson and the terminology like “lifters” and “leaners” do resonate with a wide section of the community. In fact, neo-liberalism thrives on selfishness, because it drives a perverted form of individualism which allows many to be completely uncaring about those with less and to readily see them as bludgers.

  14. roma guerin

    Agree with all of the above. Especially lawrencewinder.

  15. jim

    A hard- right wing Catholic, little johney wowza is as good as his bowl (cricket tragic).

    Blowing out the budget with falling GDP is a mark of policy ineptitude (LNP economic tragics)

  16. G.Taplin

    John Howard not only hardened our hearts but he hardened the political, social and economic landscape for everyone. Many who were in the middle are in a weaker position and those who previously sat on the periphery such as the long term unemployed, the disabled, minorities etc are in a living hell thanks to the father of Abbott.

  17. Johno

    Agree with all and sundry.

  18. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    I agree with all and sundry too.

    Ill fares the land and G. Taplin, you took the words out of my mouth.

  19. Roswell

    John Howard was a mean-spirited prick. A real nasty piece of work.

    You might have gathered that I don’t like him.

  20. havanaliedown

    Don’t forget, Labor – under Paul Keating introduced mandatory detention for illegal immigrants in the early 90’s. So, it’s more accurate to say Paul Keating hardened our poor widdle hearts.

  21. Gangey1959

    I wonder who worded up the boys in blue. Dear little johnny would have been in deeeeep shit if they too had told him to eff off. The whining bastard would have found out what it’s like to be an old age pensioner all on your own and out in public, with no one to hold your hand and help you through the people, and keep you from falling under a bus.
    May he rot on the crucifix of public ridicule until Hell freezes over. (Which with our current rate of Global Warming wont be before dinner)

  22. My say

    This was no accident ,This protest march had been advertised for weeks ,so this old fool thought he could stir up some trouble for the unions and Shorten

  23. Ian

    JoHo,the most spiteful, holier-than-thou, flak-jacket-wearing, divisive, bum-mumbling monkey-faced shitgibbon.
    Seriously, this Deputy to Sheriff Dubya was more interested in playing tonsil hockey with The Pres and sending our troops to an illegal war rather than steering Australia’s economy to a fair and equitable end for all… not just the Big End of Town. Considering Monkey-Boy was a shit treasurer, a shit PM and a shit ambassador whose only real claim to fame was to lie about asylum seekers throwing children overboard. one would naturally expect to see this repellent rodent trying to get Truffles woes off the front pages by foul means or fouler. How this parasitic, cancerous amoeba lasted SO long as PM says more about the gullibility of the Australian public at the time who, sadly, are reemerging from the bile of their commercial TV dominated lives and getting ready to re-infect the omnishambles of clusterfluckery called The Parliament of Australia.

    Someone, anyone, make it stop!

  24. lawrencesroberts

    It’s unbelievable that Howard does not have his own security detail or that they had not been aware of the protest. More like a Tory try at a Reichstag moment, get the commies, fortunately the unions were too slow for them.

  25. Wayne Turner

    “How this parasitic, cancerous amoeba lasted SO long as PM says more about the gullibility of the Australian public at the time…” – Yeap the same ignorant gullible morons that gave us Abbott,NoBalls,and (I don’t want to) imagine the scum they are going to produce in the future.

  26. Harquebus

    So far, we are all in agreement. There is no one that I despise more than John Howard. George Brandis takes second place on my list of most despised.

    The good part is, no blood was spilled. As hated as John Howard is, he was still able to walk down the street unharmed. I think some one threw some coins at him.


  27. Lance

    History when written of -The Horrid Howhard Years-

    would need to be written by the cash for comment -hired—$$$ pen— of — cultural war historian-Kieth Windshuttle to plaster over all of the horrid social cracks that appeared amidst Howhard’s socially irrisponsible, spiteful, hurtful legacy -the lying rodent left us to deal with

    After all Howhard— paid Windshuttle $$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$ to rewrite out of the history books the known atrocities committed against Australian Aborigional Tribes that colonised this nation before British settlement

    The ongoing gaul of this man — is that taxpayers have to pick up the tab day in day out 24-7 for the upkeep of Howard and his wife in being drip fed public taxpayers funds being funnelled to their bank accounts till they die .

    Where as under his regime -of Workchoices -Hundreds of thousands of decent hard working Australians lost as much as 1/3rd of their income and in some cases all of their entitlements under his government policies at the time

    Damn this Public Purse Pilferer who has been sponging off Australian Tax Payers all of his Adult life
    the horror the horror

  28. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    Hear, hear Lance.

    Who has the resolve to challenge Howard in the courts for his wrongs committed?

    A legal defeat of Howard would set a precedent and send a message to other public officials not to take the Australian People for fools.

  29. Alan Baird

    All ebbslootly correct. Johnnie is a prick. No doubt. A patriot when you’re looking for a scoundrel. A climate sceptic until the drought then a religious hypocrite asking all to pray for rain. There is no act too low he wouldn’t stoop to. He wrote the book on being Honest John, always meant ironically don’t forget. There’s always some fool trying to rewrite the history of his obsequiousness and mendacity. The Uriah Heep of politics.

  30. Maeve Carney

    John Howard was entitled to respect when he was the PM but now he is a private citizen, he should know his place, he is entitled to no more or less respect than the average citizen. If he chooses to put himself, as a private citizen, in the public eye and have his opinions reported then he has to accept that he will be met with people who disagree with him. He is no more entitled to have his opinions made public than anyone else.

  31. Peter F

    No, Maeve, John Howard was not entitled to respect: The office of Prime Minister deserved the respect. There is a WORLD of difference.

  32. havanaliedown

    Maeve, I assume your edict extends to all former-PMs? Is it OK for John Howard to walk down the street?

  33. havanaliedown

    “Who has the resolve to challenge Howard in the courts for his wrongs committed?”… I don’t know. Do you know anyone with mad legal skillz and plenty of time on their hands?

  34. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    Not up close. That’s why I’m asking.

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