Joyce, Canavan and Murray Darling scandal expose fatal flaws in Turnbull’s government.
Explosive revelations rock our sleepy island-continent this week as a plot to bring down a plane with an “improvised explosive device” is thwarted in Sydney in yet another timely Coalition terror alert while Labor dares suggest that a bigger threat is the inequality which is tearing our nation apart, just as the time bomb of section 44 (i) of our constitution wreaks havoc in North Queensland.
Happily, North Korea obliges with another diverting missile show. Our media replays its spooky tape of goose-stepping men in uniform with recklessly big hats and bad haircuts. A war with North Korea would last for ever judging by the way you see the same missiles fired endlessly. For a moment we forget our local woes and hiss the international villain.
Back to earth and some shocking news. Casa Canavani, home of the Federal Minster for Adani, Flat-earther Matt Canavan is in tatters. Many other MPs are at risk of a 44(i) gone rogue. Twenty MPs – at least risk being found ineligible.
Barnaby Joyce whose father was a New Zealander is hoist with the 44 (i) petard. Joyce maintains he’s not a Kiwi because he was born in Australian and he never applied for NZ citizenship.
Yet the 1948 British Nationality and New Zealand Citizenship Act (Section 7), which was in place in New Zealand when baby Barnaby was born, clearly states:
“Subject to the provisions of this section, a person born after the commencement of this Act shall by descent be a New Zealand citizen by descent if his father was a New Zealand citizen at the time of his birth”
Barnaby need not resign but he should, in good faith, declare his situation and add his case to the High Court, for consideration, too. The same goes for Eric Abetz.
Tasmanian Senator Eric Abetz has yet to document his timely renunciation of German citizenship. Indeed, his case is an anomaly of interest to the High Court, surely, given reports that he was ineligible to enter parliament when he did, initially filling a casual vacancy.
Legal action over Eric’s ineligibility was eventually withdrawn but only because the time to lodge objections to his initial appointment and his first election “win” had expired.
Abetz has yet to keep his promise to provide a copy of a letter he says he wrote to the German Embassy in 1993 renouncing his citizenship. Instead, Tassie Liberals attack Labor’s Justine Keay.
As befits our tribal politics, a witch hunt is unleashed. Tasmanian Labor MP for Braddon, Keay, said by ABC to be “dodging queries” has explained via social media that she formally renounced her UK citizenship before nominating as a Federal candidate and that she has provided proof to the ALP.
Section 44 (i) is, however, set to unseat recently-renounced dual citizen, PHON’s Malcolm Roberts, all seventy-seven votes of him. His bijou senate spot will now go to Pauline Hanson’s sister, Judy Smith, who is itching to hop aboard the clan’s Jabiru, despite its problematic provenance.
MPs scramble to check their mothers’ passports, recipe books and other signs of dormant dual nationality. A mercurial Malcolm Roberts embraces an impossible number positions in quick succession. No change there.
He clearly was once a Pom, as well as a Planet Zorgian and he has a go at renouncing his UK nationality on The Today Show and by email – as if being a PHON member isn’t worldly renunciation enough. His showmanship will be missed.
“I am choosing to consider I never was British”, says the nation’s top empiricist, in a backhand swipe, perhaps, at Australians who identify as Indigenous, perhaps confusing empiricism with solipsism. That settles the matter.
Some cry foul. Others say the unwritten rules and conventions the Constitution relies upon are not worth the paper they are written on. Yet our Constitution is a tribute to our federating fathers’ quest to create the best business environment they could for themselves. It bans anyone who:
“Is under any acknowledgement of allegiance, obedience, or adherence to a foreign power, or is a subject or a citizen or entitled to the rights or privileges of a subject or citizen of a foreign power.”
Always keen to strike a pose on the world stage, meanwhile, Australia is keen to join its secret arms trade partner, Saudi Arabia on the UN Human Rights Council, when the UNHCR accuses Immigration Minister Dutton and his team of deception in its US refugee swap double-deal.
Cross-examined by hostile Coalition Inquisitor, ABC’s Leigh Sales, Volker Turk, UNHCR’s Assistant High Commissioner for Protection, responds that Dutton gave an undertaking that 36 refugees from Manus Island could join close family in Australia. He explains the nature of the assurance.
“(Dutton) didn’t give us assurances because we didn’t present cases yet. But he did agree that we would be able to present such cases.”
Michelle Grattan suggests it would be too Machiavellian to suggest Dutton’s gang would give the impression of having cases looked at while they had no intention of reviewing them favourably.
In his best diplomatic manner, Turk condemns the damning shameful human rights big picture,
“… what we have seen is a deterrence policy. It’s a border protection policy with a slippery slope where, indeed, people who are refugees are effectively punished. Part of that punishment is also how they deal with people who have family links in Australia.”
As Gillian Triggs, Human Rights Commissioner, mercilessly pilloried and persecuted by Abbott, Brandis and News Corp, the Turnbull government, like its punch-drunk predecessor, says on retirement this week, Australia is ideologically opposed to human rights. Poor fellow my country.
Supremo Dutton, meanwhile, who will acquire even greater power when he heads up our super-ministry of Home Affairs, in reward for his loyal support of the PM, is unavailable for comment.
Equally under-examined is our Foreign Affairs Minister, Julie Bishop. Her pro-US line on China has triggered a ban on our chilled beef and sheep exports. Six processing plants have been stopped.
Processors claim the bans are in retaliation to Foreign Minister Julie Bishop’s recent comments over freedom of navigation in the South China Sea. Yet China may well accuse us of hypocrisy.
Australia is critical of China’s artificial islands and its bellicose posturing but we continue to bully our tiny northern neighbour Timor-Leste (East Timor) over rights to gas reserves in just the same way we accuse China of behaving in the South China Sea.
Strong-arming the weak and defenseless is Coalition policy, abroad as much as at home.
No drama. Help is on its way. Smooth-talking Trade Minister Steve Ciobo – not-an-Italian-citizen- says it is “a very significant situation” and the Government has “mobilised quickly” to engage Chinese authorities on the issue.
Whew. That’s all sorted then. We can all go back to our happy families living in democratic, rules-based harmony under US power. The Bishop doctrine of denial shows blithe over-confidence in an imaginary friend. US leadership in Asia under Trump will be unlike any other. Now that’s a real and present danger.
Luckily, by Saturday, the bomb plot which Abbott-appointee, AFP’s Andrew Colvin says is “Islamic inspired” is discovered just as a couple of TV crews happen to be right outside. The bust is nicely timed for Prime TV and helps deflect attention from a Prime Minister who is in hiding all week.
No-one dare ask Colvin where he’s up to with investigating Pauline’s Jabiru. Or with the NBN busts timed so well for last election. The polite fiction of AFP independence and competence continues. Expect more lecterns and updates. We are in an era of government by announceables.
It matters little now to citizens of our democracy that 24 hours pass and no charge is laid. Rule of law? Separation of powers? So easy to extend detention without any charge with our beaut new anti-terror laws to keep everybody safe.
A dual citizen witch-hunt or alien alert, if you prefer, and an anti-Muslim dog-whistle terror distraction divert few from this week’s main show. Spoiler alert. The plot continues as follows.
Turnbull goes missing in inaction. In a searing new episode of Upstream Downstream, our nation’s epic soap opera, Matt Canavan is outed as an alien and Barnaby Joyce’s front bar gaffe pulls the pin on a Nats Murray-Darling basin boondoggle, revealing the scheme to be a scam.
First to a bar in Shepparton, packed we are told with local farmers, agog to hear Barnaby, as ever. He speaks their language.
“We’ve taken water and put it back into Agriculture [ministry] so we can look after you and make sure we don’t have the greenies running the show, basically sending you out the back door.”
Barnaby means he’s helped wealthy cotton irrigators to help themselves to billions of litres of water, paid for by tax-payers to ensure the environmental health of the Murray Darling system. Some farmers may have traded in this stolen water, profiteering from its illegal sale.
The program exposes what appear to be seriously corrupt dealings between politicians, public servants and a few big irrigators in the Murray Darling Basin.
Not only is the alleged rort a national scandal, Joyce’s behaviour is shocking. Rather than exercise his own responsibility as Minister for Water, he accuses ABC’s Four Corners of trying to “create a calamity” over its allegations of water theft. In the interim, he seems to collude with irrigators. In any other government he’d be tendering his resignation.
Instead, Joyce goes missing until late in the week when the tape of his Wednesday address to farmers in Shepparton surfaces. The tape confirms his contempt for any environmental concern and implies he is in collusion with the water thieves. For any other minister it would be curtains. In any other government he’d be fired.
Agile Mal is on to it. After a long talk with his deputy, they decide that this is not a federal matter. How could the Federal Water Minister be responsible? NSW can sort itself out. After all Baird sorted out ICAC before he retired. Didn’t he?
By Sunday, Phil Coorey reports that the PM has ordered a national review of water compliance in the best Yes Minister tradition of diverting a crisis into a review rather than follow up what seem serious allegations of criminal misconduct made in the program. It beats real leadership.
The PM is silent, moreover, over Canavan. He must be gone for all money. Not a word about Matt, The Accidental Italian which wins performance of the week for its opening number alone- Mum’s the Word.
Mum’s the Word is a show-stealing multi-cultural number with slick ensemble work. It features Signor Canavan, Adani’s champion and family. Matt tears his hair with passionate self-loathing. No. He struts and frets. No. He’s turned into an Italian. No. Tell me it’s not true. I tell you I signed nothing. No. I have never been to Italy. No. An alien?
Canavan mugs the camera. He’s beside himself with conflicted loyalties. Is it witchcraft? Too much grappa?
No, Matteo. Not stregoneria. Worse. Motherly love. In a captivatingly coy cameo debut, Matt’s Mama, Maria, La Contessa Canavan, faithful wife of convicted felon Bryan, confesses. She’s kept everything from her son. The papers. The passport. The whole Italian job. Her secret for ten years.
Wife of Bryan is top contender for the week’s best spin-off for its sensational revelations alone. In 2007 when Canavan Snr was sent to the Big House for seven years for fraud, a provident Maria was inspired to take out Italian citizenship for herself and her children. As you do.
A quick family chat in 2006 and the subject was never again mentioned by anybody. Nor were the Italian government voting papers which arrived on three occasions ever forwarded nor was Matt’s brand-new passport ever sent on to him. The script is pure farce, pure Dario Fo.
Not a word, even, of praise for Maria’s miracle: making Matt an Italian without his having to sign anything or produce ID. Embassy staff and other dual nationals even claim the feat is impossible.
The Australian recruits our sympathy for battler Bryan. Had to sell a string of properties in 2006, we are told, after he and a colleague were investigated for embezzling $1.6 million from Nestle. Clearly a better class of felon.
Suspense sky-rockets thanks to our PM’s studied under-performance. In homage to Conan Doyle’s The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night Time,Malcolm Turnbull, lies doggo all week, despite a scandalous turn of events which could easily cause his government to lose its tiny majority.
Could it be that his recent OS trip and his bid to convert Menzies and the Liberal Party to lower case L over-taxed him. Or the government’s continued tanking in News Poll and Essential?
Certainly his shit-eating grin and camera handshake with Tony Abbott would be taxing. The encounter was billed as a fight to the death, yet, on the day, Turnbull turned the other cheek. Tiring.
Worse, he supported the NSW Liberal Party Warringah motion plebiscite, which will enable Tony’s backers to stack branches with right-wingers; safeguarding Abbott’s own pre-selection.
Perhaps the PM’s just hiding the egg on his face. When Greens Senators, Larissa Waters and Scott Ludlum, woke up to discover they were still dual nationals, the PM was quick to sink the slipper.
“It is pretty amazing, isn’t it, that you have had two out of nine Greens senators didn’t realise they were citizens of another country. It shows incredible sloppiness on their part,” Turnbull sneered.
Schadenfreude aside, the PM could acknowledge that Waters and Ludlum couldn’t resign from Parliament quickly enough. Yet, now that Canavan’s in trouble, it’s the law that’s at fault.
Of course, Matt may be above the law – the Coalition default option for cabinet ministers. He’s certainly acting that way. With unseemly haste, the government rushes to protect its own.
Signor Canavan proclaims he has “legal advice” that he is not in breach of Section 44 (i) of the constitution. He’s appealing to the High Court. The matter will be referred 6 August. It’s a useful gag and a standard tactic by government MPs in trouble to avoid any further scrutiny. Fat chance.
Legal advice? The law holds that ignorance is no excuse. What Canavan means is that he’s been persuaded not to resign by legal genius AG George Brandis. George just loves Matt’s defence of “My Mum did it”. Incisive. Like Malcolm Turnbull, Brandis has a brilliant mind until it is made up.
Matt is a man of the people, at least in North Queensland and our coal-fired national press.
Naturally, he is also a News Corp star for his advocacy of mining, his climate-denial, his right-to-lifing, his support of protests outside abortion clinics and his war against green vigilantes. Environmental groups must be prevented from any advocacy. They sabotage coal mines.
In brief, Matt is framed as an archetypal innocent trapped by events beyond his control. He is quick to protest his ignorance. The Sergeant Schulz defence goes over well in The Australian and with Andrew Probyn.
I know nothing. Mama is to blame he says. You have to understand. He has never been into an Italian embassy or even eaten pizza. Bravo, Matteo! Rave reviews follow.
Godfather to his children, his former employer, (Matt was his Chief of Staff) and an old family friend, an impartial Barnaby Joyce attests to Matt’s “incredible” character. Not the wisest choice of epithet in the circumstances, he realises, binding it with a running superlative or two – “exemplary character; exemplary person.” Barnaby nuance. Media pundits agree he’s a good minister.
Of course there’s no show without Punch. Think-tanking, our Federal Treasurer Scott Morrison tops last week’s top trick, Tudge’s Fudge, a redefining of poverty out of existence whilst continuing a war on the poor.
This week ScoMo banishes inequality simply by shouting everyone down and calling Bill Shorten a liar. It’s a fantastic trick. Such a boon to the mindlessly tribal approach the Abbott Turnbull Coalition has brought to politics.
And it’s personal. All week, a servile ABC repeats Morrison’s nonsense that inequality is a contested area and simply one of Evil Bill Shorten’s Mediscare fakes. Perhaps the Coalition’s sole achievement has been to turn the name Bill Shorten into a pejorative term – at least to their own tribes.
Nerding up with graphs, ScoMo puts the Gini Co-efficient back in the bottle in a Duttonesque demonstration that whatever evidence you may think you have, he alone knows the truth. Besides, he leers, social inequality is something Bill Shorten invented in a naff attempt to cash in on trendy-lefties Jeremy Corbyn and Sanders’ popularity.
The week ends with a government in crisis over water, our most precious resource. No inquiry or review will siphon off the public anger and sense of betrayal. Turnbull’s side-step will only lower his negative leadership ratings.
The Murray-Darling Basin scandal helps confirm that this government has not the slightest commitment to environmentalism. Sadly it fits into a long established pattern of environmental neglect from the Great Barrier Reef to land-clearing. Its evasive, cynical response, alone, to say nothing of its failure exercise due diligence, however is yet another compelling indication that it is unfit to govern.
Ironically, the Murray-Darling water rort is also a grotesque illustration of some of the flaws of trickle-down economics, if any more evidence were needed, while the witch hunt for aliens in parliament; those MPs who have not yet renounced their dual citizenship is fed by an ugly, irrational, intolerance abroad in the land.
For this a government which substitutes the threat of terror to compensate for real leadership has only itself to blame. For Malcolm Turnbull, moreover, the water scandal and his weak response this week is a reminder that the Faustian pact with the Nationals which helped him to become leader is rapidly working to depose him.
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Too true – but too long!
Great article David, I think that covers it.
Every political hack around the world is destroying their country’s infrastructure. As is the agenda of our own bunch of puppets.
Ah, McTyler you’ve done it again! Your writing is a true joy to read. So much covered, so bitingly, quietly, with delicious surprises sprinkled within. Love the bit about the pollies scurrying to check their mothers recipe books. Turnbull must have been riding in the channel 7 TV van, because so quick on the scene.I wonder when he is going to throw in the towel, announce wants to spend time with the family etc. The only way out for him I think. Would like to get his money’s worth but …..
Strong satire, delicately worded, lives !
A superb summary of this week’s events in national politics.
Jaquix, I suspect Turnbull’s main motivation to remain Prime Minister now, is to be able to clearly best Tony Abbott’s puny achievement of just a few days less than two years.
After all, for each of these Liberal ‘ leaders’ it is not so much what they can do for the nation as Prime Minister, but what the nation can do for them and their egos that matters.
I suspect if he lasts that long, Turnbull will not context the next election.
Sometime during the Howard government, one of them was in trouble for something and they just legislated their innocence. Problem solved.
I can’t remember the details so, if someone out there can shed some light, I’d appreciate it.
Thanks in advance.
Nailed it. I really have no words some days to describe how low and pathetic this government is. You said it all.
The “improvised explosive device” is, somewhat laughably, now described as possibly being a meat mincer. On the other hand it may have been a poison gas device disguised as a meat mincer and not a explosive. In other words they have no idea.
I can picture them on the plane, “Alright, when we’re at 10,000 metres get the meat mincer out and turn the handle clockwise three times to arm it. Shout “Cow Power!” and push the mince.” This is how the gummint has made a possibly dangerous situation absurd to me.
“A man arrested at Renown Ave, Wiley Park, lived in a unit with his brother and nurtured a community of about 15 stray cats, neighbours said. “He was a strange man, he never looked at you in the eye when you spoke to him,” one neighbour said.” So he looked after stray cats and wouldn’t look you in the eyes is enough to convince some idiots that he’s almost certainly a terrorist. What a crock of shit!
Why is Truffles fronting the media, is he showing that he’s tough and determined? To me he’s showboating and using it as a photo opportunity. Il Duttonuci should be up there as the boss of a giant policing and security department informing us as to what the situation is as it unfolds. This just gives the LNP yet another reason the strip yet a few more freedoms and rights from us in the name of “protecting all Australians” from evil doers and move us a bit closer to fascism.
Dutton could be seen as a modern day Sejanus, sly-eyed on the bigger prize…that of forcing a quickie divorce of Lucy from Turnbull so he can “marry-up” to elevate his social station…: “Today , Canberra..tomorrow…?”
No need to go Trumpland in your search for political entertainment, it’s all here on the AIM, Yes Minister, Aussie style:
Trade Minister Steve Ciobo – not-an-Italian-citizen-…….
Baby Barnaby…( are there more of them, like baby possums ?)
Coalition Inquisitor, ABC’s Leigh Sales (defence lawyer for Dutton?)
Wife of Brian…LOL
Brilliant biting summary of this futile government
Brilliant. Pure Dario Fo. Thank you. Mincer plot is inspiring. Pure farce. A Murdoch hack was complaining recently that not everyone was taking the terror threats seriously.
Another excellent article thank you David. You have a rare talent.
On the dual citizenship thingy, does anyone else find it strange that Tony Abbott waited until the day after Scott Ludlum resigned to finally produce a letter, supposedly from the UK Visas and Immigration department, confirming that Abbott had renounced his British citizenship on October 12, 1993. This was just after he was made head of Australians for a Constitutional Monarchy. Odd timing.
But the plot thickens.
Tony Magrathea, the day after Abbott produced his letter, lodged an FOI request with the UK Home Office, (of which the UKVI is a part) asking for a copy of the renunciation certificate and the receipt for processing payment.
This was their response:
24 July 2017
Dear Mr Magrathea,
Thank you for your e-mail of 14 July 2017, in which you ask for information regarding Anthony John Abbott. Your request has been handled as a request for information under the Freedom of Information Act 2000 and can be viewed in full in the accompanying Annex A.
I can confirm that the Home Office does not hold this information.
So on what are they basing their confirmation of renunciation? And why did Abbott keep the letter, dated 7 January 2015, a secret. And why did it take him until 2015 to request verification? And why was it signed by a “Deputy Chief Caseworker” when Alan Tudge’s letter, which looks quite different, was signed by the Vice Consul?
Thanks, Kaye Lee. Have been following Tony’s little flourish of documentation recently.. And the FOI response. Cleared up,long ago, Mr Abbott? BS Friends in high places? Wouldn’t be surprised. Certainly worth pursuing.
Great article David,and i have now put on hold my plans to buy a hand mincer,as that freak that Abbott appointed to head up the AFP looks as though he could crash through my door backed up with 10 armed angry walloppers and really ruin my sausage mix!~~~!
Top effort David, loved it. Too long? Never, I didn’t notice length I was too engrossed in every word. Just on Minister potato head. I look forward now to his ‘no further comment’ on any in depth details on the arrest of the 4 so called terrorists who apparently had intent. ‘National security don’t you know’.
Kaye Lee, the conspiracy on the Abbott letter goes further in that the one he produced does not conform to the format used by UK government.
The one Abbott produced looks like a simple electronic word processor template, whereas examples of real renunciation confirmation letters have all the usual British flourishes, a floret and other embellishments you would expect.
Yes. It looked like a quick forgery to me but I’ve got nothing to compare it with. You also have to pay a fee, I believe. Shouldn’t be too hard to check the receipt. A facsimile of what an authentic certificate looks like ought to be easy to find, too.
Interested also in the implications for Abbott’s Rhodes Scholarship. Can you get one of these if, like Abbott, you are a Pom living in Australia?
Good article David. Thanks
Bitingly brilliant read. Which deserves a more comprehensive look from yours truly.
I had difficulty concentrating because of my latest brain fart:
Why bother trying to get a bomb on board a plane when you can take out a lot of damage in a crowded terminal, where people are just standing around, waiting in line to have their bags checked?
Perhaps I should not have stated anything, but…
David, it is always pure delight to read your articles.
Re Rhodes Scholarship, dual citizens are eligible. Tony’s mum applied for Australian citizenship for him before he took up the scholarship but he may have been ineligible when he first applied – not sure on application date, citizenship was 25 June 1981.
Another interesting aspect which Carol cottoned onto….
The National Archives of Australia keep citizenship applications for everyone who applies to be a citizen.
These are generally public documents available to all. For some reason the NAA made Mr Abbott’s application file a secret document in February 2014.
Thanks Kaye Lee Cecil Rhodes (and my, wasn’t he a scoundrel?) scholarship website tells me applicants must be Australian citizens and have been resident in Australia for at least five of the past ten years; Hadn’t got to the dual citizenship bit. Intrigued by the veil of secrecy imposed by the NAA in 2014. Surely there’s nothing to hide. Curious and well worth pursuing.
Speaking of transparency, another Liberal buzzword, Abbott’s daughter, Frances, was very fortunate with her $60,000 scholarship. Must be something in the genes. Great to see a talented, or battling family getting some support.
But not the Abbotts. It’s not often your teacher goes into print saying you’re not worth it. Neither on merit nor hardship. But Frances’ teacher Melletios Kyriakidis certainly did. And copped it for breaching student privacy.
As for support, the Whitehouse Institute has Liberal connections, I read. Ah. That old Liberal level playing field they never weary of preaching – especially in the context of privatisation.
Institute chairman Les Taylor is a Liberal Party donor and a long-time friend of Mr Abbott, I read in the SMH.
It’s a long bow – not even a bow at all, really but the sort of man who is prepared to pull strings to get his daughter $60,000 would have no compunction in tapping the right UK old boy network to get the citizenship business fixed. Especially a boxing blue.
Speaking of networks, Dyson Heydon was on the panel that awarded Tony his Rhodes Scholarship.
In 1993, it was reported that Mr Abbott, then the executive director of Australians for Constitutional Monarchy had appointed Mr Heydon to a legal committee to consider the legal implications of a move to a republic. Interesting Tony renounced his citizenship that year, too.
Thanks, David. A great read indeed. If you didn’t cry, by god! it would be tempting to shoot these treasonous bastards.
Absolutely grateful to David Tyler for it. Some of it is speculative, but he has joined many dots convincingly and in particular asks why no police investigation of Joyce, which answers a question that has been banging away inside my head. Nice to know I am not the only mug puzzled by these goings on.
The sort of thing covered here is well emphasised by Kaye Lee’s comment. I am amused at the passage involving Julie Bishop and find the national security diversionay bs involving birth certificates etc convincing.
I agree with some of Rosemary J36.. the last para is a bit windy but rightly cals out the Barnaby Joyce enviro disaster now over two decades old since Cubbie Creek.
But if I were to pick a quibble it would be that the para fails to adequately highlight the $15 billion mafia naked criminalities involved.
I thought I had left his up, but will offer link now, of Victorian Nationals Senator Bridget McKenzie interviewed on Latteline, 28/7.http://www.abc.net.au/lateline/content/2016/s4709753.htm
The transcript does not even begin to emphasise the scathing nature of her regard for NSW water theft when Victorian irrigators have to do these tough and must surely be regarded as an implied indictment of her own leader.
David Tyler’s compilation here is damning condemnation of the insanity and corruption prevailing at present in this country. It is indicative of the turmoil arising out of the problem of facing rapid changes in the world where the head-in-the-sand conservatives are struggling to cope.
The results of an inquiry into the water scandal will be interesting. But I am also intrigued by that piece of paper Abbott has belatedly produced about his citizenship – fraught with intrigue and secrecy.
Alongside these political events are the scribblings and machinations of the Murdoch propaganda media. Its team of scribblers high on Kool Aid and in tune with the common book of songs is clearly gearing up for an onslaught before the next election, whenever that might be.
Paul Kelly is attacking Bill Shorten for his comments on inequality. He makes it sound as if there is not much to discuss because inequality, according to some, is not so great. But about half way through the mind-numbing verbiage he says this:
“In recent years Australia has experienced below-trend economic growth – a process that over time generates agitation and frustration that naturally flows into inequality resentment.
The problem, therefore, is not just inequality – it is a fusion of inequality and inadequate economic growth. This fits into contemporary economic challenges – weak demand, changes in the labor market, poor wages growth and asset price rises due to monetary policy.”
So what is all the fuss about? Bill has not discussed all the issues? So? Anyone would think that Bill was not aware of the nuances!
But Kelly is. He blames the GFC. Remember when the Murdoch press asked What GFC? And the answer now to these problems is more jobs. Heard that before? It is not happening. Anyway, instead of talking about inequality, let’s talk about ‘fairness’, says Kelly.
Then we come to Janet Albrechtsen attacking “Women who play the sexism card”. We have heard it all before. She is attacking ‘the pussy feminists of the 21st century’, the ones who ‘play the girlie victim’, such as Gillian Triggs, Julia Gillard and Christine Nixon. “Pussy feminists”? What is she saying in this Trump era?
She has the usual concocted charges to be laid on these three women in particular, but there are others made subject to Albrechtsen’s bile and vitriol; Triggs for producing a report at a time not to the right-wingers’ liking; Gillard for her ‘carbon tax’ which, as Peta Credlin has confessed, was not a carbon ‘tax’, and Christine Nixon for alleged dereliction of duty.
“It is a cosy little clique’, says Janet one minute, but the next accuses them of making “female victimhood the new norm”. So which is it? Janet, in a muddle.
And you know what? None of these women are now in conspicuous politics. Janet, lost in the Murdoch archives, looking for dirt.
And the Chris Kenny epistle on “Weatherill forever groping around in self-inflicted dark”. So we must ask, have the lights gone out again? Or at all, since last September? No? So what is the fuss about?
“So when last year’s storm took down a relatively insignificant transmission line…” He said what? “Insignificant transmission line’? That is, 22 pylons? Is his man mad? The storm caused a state-wide blackout!
Weatherill called Kenny a “right-wing f*ckwit’, apparently. And Kenny wonders why, with his ignorance of the facts and his weird ideology. So this is about Kenny’s revenge.
So we have it, the Murdoch press rabbiting on at high speed. And we wonder why debate and discussion, even in a country pub, is scraping the dirt on the floor.
That took a bit to read through….. am I slowing down or was it the NBN….
Owen, it’s the MTM (Malcolm Turdball’s Mess) NBN.
Why pay once for something less, when you can have it built 2 times, pay for it at four times the price, only to get the same thing in much longer wait time, all on your credit card, of course, at a cash advance rate.
Yes, the Bankster’s love us for it and so does Rupert.
‘a Prime Minister who is in hiding all week’. Turnbull is in hiding because he too is ineligible but not on citizenship grounds but because he had a contract with the Cth at the time he nominated. http://www.smh.com.au/federal-politics/political-news/department-fixes-error-following-questions-about-malcolm-turnbull-election-eligibility-20161107-gsjsre.html
would be careful about copyright law with this article. The stuff on Barnaby Joyce is lifted straight out of the Tasmanian Times article. http://tasmaniantimes.com/index.php?%2Fweblog%2Farticle%2Fnation-mr-abetz-and-the-anomaly-of-citizenship-%2Fshow_comments
Yes. I wrote it.
There’s nothing about Barnaby here. Are you sure you are not getting confused with an article I have written? I do write every week for the Tasmanian Times. Used to be under my pen name Urban Wronksi but now my real name David Tyler.