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Why are our politicians held to much lower standards than the rest of us?

Why are our politicians held to much lower standards than the rest of us?

In what workplace would the married boss promoting his pregnant girlfriend be acceptable?

In what workplace would there be so little transparency about the employment, duties and remuneration of staff?

In what workplace would it be acceptable to tell blatant lies about the state of the company?

In what workplace would it be acceptable to turn up drunk?

Imagine how it would go down with the ATO if I tried to claim my attendance at a colleague’s wedding as a work expense.  Or if I claimed for publications that have absolutely nothing to do with my work.

And how must FIFO workers feel when they are told that a politician’s job is so onerous that we must pay for their family to join them on their work trip to a resort somewhere nice?

How can anything constructive ever be achieved when management is perpetually locked in an internecine war?

Which shareholders would accept spending hundreds of millions of dollars to keep information secret from them?  Paying for feasibility studies, cost-benefit analyses and modelling which are kept from the rest of the board.  Paying for court cases to fight against having to answer questions about your activities at work.

Which workplace would tolerate leaking damaging stories to the media in order to attack your colleagues and break down trust in the organisation?

Why is there never any mention of productivity gains or efficiency dividends when deciding on politicians’ wage rises or the number of staff they employ?  Perhaps the Deputy Whip of the Nationals doesn’t actually need two media advisers.

What company would pay to fly people all over the country just to be seen?  Celebrities and sports stars get appearance money because they bring a return to their promoters.  Oh wait….

The politicians wonder how they can win back our trust?

Stop behaving like you are teenagers away from home for the first time – no parents, no teachers roaming the halls, living at an on-campus residential college, drinking and rooting and partying too much on your parent’s credit card.  Stop going out every night and start concentrating on your homework.  Stop squabbling amongst yourselves and learn how to work as a team rather than trying to outdo each other in a slanging match.  Stop your appalling behaviour during class – no interrupting, no yelling out, and no name-calling.

And most of all, stop lying to the people who are paying for you to be there.


118 comments

  1. MikeW

    Spot on Kaye, their offices are their workplace yet they seem to be allowed to consume as much alcohol has they like.
    Then they enjoy their taxpayer subsidised meals and alcohol. The whole lot should be breath tested before they are allowed into Parliament especially after lunch.
    Even better a total alcohol ban.

  2. Frank Smith

    Well said Kaye Lee!

    An important point that has emerged from this “Barnaby Affair” is the number of Media Advisers the Government employs and the salaries these “staffers” are on. I do not understand why politicians need any of these “staffers” – they have immediate access to dedicated competent career public servants as staff. It appears that these “Media Advisers” are no more than spin doctors whose job (at enormous cost to us taxpayers) is to massage, obfuscate, twist and spin all information being delivered to the public. No, we electors do not want spin and bullshit – just deliver honest and concise messages and answer questions fully and truthfully without all the partisan spin and bullshit that obscures the message. And that would be best done by getting rid of these expensive and unnecessary Media Advisers and assorted “staffers” and use honest hard-working career public servants to communicate with the public. The proliferation of Spin Doctors is a major reason the public have lost all trust in politicians. The advent of Spin Doctors has extended the circus that is Question Time out into public debate – a development that is very unhealthy for democracy.

  3. Rhonda

    What an eloquent assessment, Kaye. Bang on the dirty money

  4. fayecox2016

    Well said Kaye Lee. Thank you

  5. Kyran

    Win back our trust?
    Funny thing about Joseph Heller’s “Catch 22”, it’s nearly as good as Orwell’s “1984”.

    “Some men are born mediocre, some men achieve mediocrity, and some men have mediocrity thrust upon them.”

    “Even among men lacking all distinction, he inevitably stood out as a man lacking more distinction than all the rest, and people who met him were always impressed by how unimpressive he was.”

    Who could possibly have conceived, all those years ago, that mediocrity was the ‘high bar’? How can we possibly talk about trust, when we are conversing with the most mediocre of the unimpressive?

    Thank you Ms Lee and commenters. Take care

  6. Kaye Lee

    Sharri Markson just said on the Drum that we paid for Barnaby to stay in Canberra on 50 nights last year when parliament wasn’t sitting. They are now combing through what Barnaby was doing on those days. Vicki lived in Canberra.

    Official expense records show Mr Joyce claimed $16,690 in travel allowance for out-of-session nights in the nation’s capital between January 1 and September 30, 2017. That is significantly more than top government figures such as Treasurer Scott Morrison, Finance Minister Mathias Cormann and Foreign Minister Julie Bishop.

    Mr Joyce was acting Prime Minister for 10 of those 50 nights. Under the rules, Mr Joyce was entitled to claim $276 per night for official business as Deputy Prime Minister and $565 per night as acting Prime Minister.

    The jobs creation thing on its own is just unacceptable. Why are they waiting? Barnaby has to go.

  7. Klaus Petrat

    Hi Kaye,

    As much as I like the article and most of your articles in general, Australians (in this case you) have the tendency to belittle problems.

    Australians call it a Nanny State when it is abundantly clear, that Australia is bordering on being a militarized police state.
    You call it ‘behaving like teenagers’. I call it in many cases bordering on the callous, the criminal, the ignorant.

    To answer your questions; Would you be able to … in a private company???

    No, you would be fired, your references would suggest to the possible next employer, ‘don’t touch that one’, and as repeat offender, you would find yourself to be unemployable.

    That is what these jerks are, unemployable. Shameful really.

  8. Kaye Lee

    I am not sure I am belittling the problem so much Klaus, as the very flawed individuals who are causing it.

    I should have added, which workplace would, after endless scathing reports, keep promoting Peter Dutton. That, for me, is one of the greatest mysteries of Turnbull’s prime ministership.

  9. Miriam English

    MikeW, I completely understand your desire to completely remove alcohol from those idiots, but it should be gradually withdrawn because suddenly stopping alcohol for an alcoholic can cause death through convulsions. (Many alcoholics die every year thinking they can just stop.) Alcohol is actually an incredibly dangerous drug — way more dangerous than heroin or speed or almost anything else.

    Hmmm… I’m almost tempted to think that would be a good thing. We’d at least be rid of the bastards.

  10. Joseph Carli

    Aww, fair go , Miriam…Out here in what is aptly named “Heartbreak Country”, it was only the presence of the local pub and the occasional good “soaking” that kept many of those old cockeys sane!…and that included the women…who were not totally adverse to tucking a few away themselves!

  11. johnF

    Kyran

    “Only the mediocre are always at their best”.
    Jean Giraudoux

  12. Aortic

    The more I hear from this conservative catholic cabal the more I wonder about the separation of religion and State. Joe Bageant author of Deer Hunting with Jesus and a frequent visitor to Australia once said, ” We got the puritans and you got the convicts, aren’t you lucky.” From all reports organised religions numbers are declining so why do we have to be subjected to policies many of which are obviously stemming from a belief in one sky fairy and his son or ghosts. Time for the restoration of secularism in Parliament and agendas that can be promulgated.without reference to a ” higher” authority.

  13. diannaart

    Kaye Lee

    Nor is the Public Service given such carte blanche as elected public servants.

    @ Joseph Carli

    Female cockies and some of them drink – who’da thunk it? 😛

  14. Kaye Lee

    They just said on The Project that there are a group of Nationals meeting as we speak with the view to tap Barnaby on the shoulder but there are others digging in behind him. Stay tuned folks. I have this vision of a shattered Barnaby channelling Marlon Brando as he cries out in anguish…..”Giiiiinnnnaaaaa”

  15. diannaart

    @Kaye Lee

    I am mortifying myself by considering Barnie’s cry of “Giiiiinnnnaaaaa” really gave Natalie the irrits and will no doubt vex Vickie before too long.

  16. Joseph Carli

    Diannaart..: ” Female cockies and some of them drink – who’da thunk it? 😛”….Well…some of us men…Gentlemen…I like to think of ourselves, are a tad reticent to place any reputation of “dipsomaniac” onto the “gentler sex”..

  17. Matters Not

    Re:

    They are now combing through what Barnaby was doing on those days. Vicki lived in Canberra.

    So there’s a Vicki and then there’s a Vikki as well. Barnaby spreads himself around apparently.

    Not sure whether the fundamental problem is normally housed in his jeans or his genes.

  18. Kaye Lee

    Females were very much confined to the Ladies Parlour in the country pub my family owned. They would drink sherry or shandies. The Aboriginals, in those days, rang a buzzer at the back door.

  19. Kaye Lee

    2GB broadcaster Ben Fordham has a new story on Joyce’s affair.

    Fordham reports that the Deputy Prime Minister attempted to distribute a Christmas card last year that featured a family photo of him, his wife Natalie and his four daughters.

    It was sent to Mrs Joyce for approval and she, according to the story, said “they had to be kidding themselves”.

  20. Malibu Mick

    Well said Kaye Lee. The Fordham story shows how untouchable Joyce thought he was.

  21. Adrianne Haddow

    Bravo, Kaye Lee.
    This latest offering of yours should be printed on posters and posted all over Parliament.
    Encapsulates how fed up we all are.

    I’m sick of the lurching from one scandal and corrupt activity to the next A bit like a soap opera where none of the characters are likeable.
    .

  22. Paul

    When the honourable minister Joyce gets the flick from national party leadership and inevitably leaves parliament, of what value will he be to Ms Rinehart? Very little i would think as he could not then do what he has done for his friends whilst in power. Best he could hope for (given he probably knows where a few bodies are buried ) “thanks for past services rendered” job/stipend as per ex minister Robb.

  23. Jim Lawrie

    When I was a FIFO I never felt the need to screw around on my wife, what sort of shit person does?

  24. Paul

    Kaye Lee, your 6.05 comment re the timeframe and dates on which Joyce stayed in Canberra and claimed expenses contains the potential to expose the “partner” cover story. Assume he would have to say in his claim where he stayed…… Is it appropriate to ask where the lady was staying at these times?

    Did i get this right? Did he start the affair, then end it, after which the lady was moved to a new job at this time when they were not a couple and then later he resumed the affair……?

  25. Michael Taylor

    Drunkenness in the public service – though I only saw it in head office – was once not a rare thing, though I will admit it was only a small percentage who were the habitual culprits.

    It was not so much the audacity to roll-up back to work drunk after a liquid lunch, but it was the decisions those people made on the job, and the way they treated staff while in that state.

    It was encouraging, however, to see this eventually stamped-out.

  26. Kaye Lee

    She got moved to Canavan in April and fell pregnant in July(ish) which is about the time she was moved to the next job. Even though the second guy says he was assured the affair was over, I don’t see much time for a split. And why the hell weren’t they using contraception. Even the teenagers know to do that.

  27. Miriam English

    But contraception is not sanctioned by the church. And Barnaby would have been certain he would be protected by the Lord.

    Nah… he would have just been in for the screwing. It’s up to the bloody woman to use the goddamn contraception anyway. Not his fault. And there’s no way he’s gonna blunt his instrument with a damn condom.

  28. Matters Not

    Re:

    And why the hell weren’t they using contraception.

    Seems to me that there’s the possibility that either (Barnaby or Vikki) could have prevented this pregnancy without too much effort. After all, we are not talking about teenagers here. Further, when the pregnancy was discovered Vikki could’ve chosen a termination and there’s little Joyce could do about that.

    On balance, it seems to me that Vikki, a 33 year old, choose to have a child – for whatever reason(s). And that choice was ongoing. She could’ve taken a different course at a number of stages. But she didn’t. Then again, this union could’ve been made in heaven and therefore …

  29. diannaart

    @ Joe Carli

    Aaaaah the 1950’s, when women were the “gentler sex” (chortle), confined to either the Ladies Lounge or the kitchen and knew their place, and men were ‘manly’, if not gentlemanly.

    Vickie has thrown in her lot with the anachronistic Barnaby, not the sexiest man alive, as he (wistfully) described Johnny Depp, but determined to get as much as he wants when he wants. Even a rent-free love-nest. As for Vickie she has her reasons, I know them not.

  30. Frank Smith

    MN – perhaps Barnaby was trying for a male heir so elected to go elsewhere – what an arsehole he is. Remember the rAbbot when he thought he may have a male heir and resorted to a DNA test, only to be disappointed.

    https://www.theage.com.au/news/National/Paternity-shock-for-Abbott/2005/03/21/1111253955138.html

    The “Ladies Lounge” back in the bad old days was often referred to as the “Snake Pit” by those in the Public Bar. Yes, thankfully we have progressed since then.

  31. Matters Not

    Frank Smith re:

    trying for a male heir so elected to go elsewhere

    Perhaps. But that would require thought which would be completely out of character for Barnaby. So, while I entertain that possibility, I rate it of low probability. Barnaby is genuinely stupid. And his tendency to imbibe too much only magnifies that condition. But he’s rat cunning and I’m sure he has plenty of dirt to dish. He won’t depart without some type of deal.

    Re pubs and how they treat Aborigines. Go to Baralaba – via Biloela, through Banana, camp on the banks of the Neville Hewitt weir and talk a short walk to the local pub where the ‘locals’ from Woorabinda are served out of sight of the white locals.

    Here’s some directions.

    https://www.google.com.au/maps/place/Woorabinda+QLD+4713/@-24.3857906,149.3272587,9z/data=!4m5!3m4!1s0x6bc69684bb5ccc09:0x400eef17f209a80!8m2!3d-24.1326508!4d149.4567091

  32. Andy P

    If we, the general public committed or engaged in half of the treasonous, criminal activity that our politicians immerse themselves in on a daily basis, we would be thrown in prison. I say start locking a few of them up when they are proven to have abused the office they swore to uphold. That might just disgrace and punish them enough to curtail a lot of this untouchable attitude they arrogantly parade in front of us on a daily basis. Time to hold them to account!

  33. cornbeck

    Please can we crowd fund this article to be placed as a full page advertisement in a Murdoch publication as soon as possible. I will certainly make a donation to make it happen. The media need to let the politicians know what we are really thinking

  34. ozibody

    Kaye Lee,the title of your article ;- ” Why are our politicians held to much lower standards than the rest of us? ” is well worth serious contemplation., and discussion at this time.

    To my mind the kernel may lie in the following … Power …. conducted in a highly $ Moneyed $ climate !

    In the current neoconservative World Wide climate, the ” P ” of Politics has become ” Power.” so that even potential candidates are drawn from within, and any idealised prospects are sucked into the vortex of the $ money $ element – maybe not totally contaminated, but if one looks at a politicians income ( all up it’s really pretty ‘heady’ compared with Average Australian income ) .not to suggest many don’t earn it.

    Times and climate move along at a fast rate so that not many citizens will have had experience of Ben Chifley (ex.train driver ) John Curtin , and Robert Menzies – tabloids reach,only occasionally, as far back as Geoff Whitlam, Malcolm Fraser etc., so there’s no general encouragement about political derivation having it’s roots in Public Service !

    I read an article today in ” Crikey ” which detailed the (colourful family style) machinations apparently underway in Labor’s Victorian ranks presently. Frankly, I had to concentrate and re-read it in an attempt to grasp the detail ! … I came away uninformed,confused, and despairing about the state of affairs …. north, centre, south, left,right, up, down, all around — Politics has allowed itself to be intentionally presented in a decimated fashion by the msm.!

    That Politics places itself in such disarray as to allow this pathetic face to be publicised, simply causes me to shake my head , and to think …’ maybe there really is Conspiracy afoot ‘ … encouraging populations to walk away from the potential of sane Governance.

    On a final note I believe it IS fair to say that .. Contempt breeds Contempt … the tone of debate in public forums (such as this one) certainly supports this point … and … the Fish rots from the Head ! … neocons note !

    Time I took my old bones to bed …’night. … 🙂 …

  35. OPPOSE THE MAJOR PARTIES

    Misconduct in public office. The whole problem of entitlement and travel expense rorts and abuses by politicians etc as well as politicians who have a conflict of interests by taking advantage of negative gearing and capital gains tax laws for investment properties while voting on tax laws derives from the exclusion of the common law offence of misconduct in public office by the Commonwealtj Criminal Code Act. Australia is one of only a few countries that does tbis. In NSW, Obeid and Mac Donald and co were convicted of this offence but it is not available in federal law as the Commonwealth Criminal Code Act, which applies in federal law, excludes the operation of the common law. In common law jurisdictions, such as Australia, legislation overides judge made common law. By excluding the common law in the Criminal Code Act federal politicians have effectively exempted themselves from misconduct in office charges. The only ways this can be changed is to either put the common law offence of misconduct in public office into legislation or remove the exclusion of the common law offences from the Criminal Code. This is the primary cause of all gov misconduct and the reason why they are unaccountable and why our country is failing.

  36. writtenword09

    Spot on Kaye.. in no other place would any of us be allowed to conduct ourselves in the way this lot do.

  37. king1394

    Many men keep faith with their wives despite having work that takes them away from home frequently. The excuse that Barnaby (and by definition other politicians) have to spend so much time away from home and that leads to them having affairs is not acceptable. I wonder if Ms Campion also found it difficult to be away from her fiance? Did Barnaby know she was due to be married and think that would free him from the consequences in due course. Or perhaps it is True Love

  38. Kaye Lee

    “The reality is, the amount of rooting that goes on in a place like Canberra,” Mr Dastyari told KIIS106.5’s Kyle & Jackie O this morning.

    “In terms of unhealthy workplaces, it’s one of the most unhealthy workplaces in the country.”

    Mr Dastyari said the unique alcohol-fuelled Canberra culture, where outsiders became celebrities, often led to “rooting around”.

    “You’ve got 4000 people in this building called Parliament, which is mostly just journos, staffers, politicians, living in this strange world of kind of alcohol and late nights and sitting and everyone is telling each other how important they are all the time … all of it fuels this really weird environment,” he said.

    Asked if there were a lot of people sleeping with each other in Canberra, Mr Dastyari replied: “Of course.”

    “Weirdly enough, more in the kind of conservative side of politics than the Left of politics,” he added.

    http://www.news.com.au/finance/work/at-work/sam-dastyari-to-barnaby-joyce-it-gets-a-lot-worse-from-here/news-story/d9246c27a708f91fd0db1a0680cc691c

  39. Kaye Lee

    As of 9.15am, no one else has the numbers to stand against Barnaby Joyce as the Nationals leader. So, if he doesn’t want to go, there is no one to push him.

  40. ozibody

    Thank you for the update Kaye. Should B. J. ride out this storm, one has to wonder just where Uncle Rupert stands on this matter.

    I believe he would have to be laughing about how low the Australian public will allow the bar to sink, and will be sharpening up his msm knives to run havoc on behalf of neoconservative values, so as to plumb even lower levels.

  41. Matters Not

    ozibody – Actually it’s the Murdoch Press that’s leading the charge against Barnaby. Perhaps Rupert doesn’t like people who desert their wives in favour of younger models. (Just jokin … )

    There’s 21 members (including the man himself) who will decide which of their number will be the leader and therefore Deputy Prime MInister. There will be some who will support the current arrangements through thick and thin. Canavan and Littleproud for example will stick. There will be some who hate Barnaby with a passion. Chester and Pitt fall into that category. I suspect that Bridget McKenzie won’t support his retention, given Barnaby didn’t want her as his Deputy.

    Truth is – Barnaby is now damaged goods. Thus I prefer that he fights tooth and nail, wins and therefore remains in his current position(s). Acts as PM and all that. And thereby continues to wreck havoc within the Coalition. They deserve that.

  42. Roswell

    Matters Not, I’m actually looking forward to Barnaby’s stint as acting PM while the other pretend one is off to win favour with trump. It should be a real hoot.

  43. Diane

    I was trying to find out how long an MP had to serve to qualify for a MP’s pension, Joyce having been found to have been illegally there due to his dual citizenship until after the recent bi-election, and came across this article from 2009 listing all the perks politicians get http://www.smh.com.au/national/full-list-of-federal-mps-entitlements-20090521-bh0v.html I don’t know if things have changed since then, but oh my goodness! All those perks and what do we get in return? Unbelievable.

  44. Kaye Lee

    BARNABY Joyce and his pregnant lover are not only living rent-free at a home owned by a millionaire from his electorate, they have also holidayed at no cost at the controversial businessman’s $4000-a-week beachfront bolthole. In answer to inquiries as to why the holiday wasn’t declared on Joyce’s interest register, he said it was because the owner and his wife had invited Joyce for a holiday and were in residence. So it comes under visiting friends, not a gift.

    Would this fellow have invited Barnaby if he wasn’t his local member and the deputy PM?

  45. ozibody

    Matters Not … Indeed the telegraph did a front page splash, yet sometimes I wonder about the possibility of a ‘ move behind the current one ‘. Rupert possibly moved on a ‘ water test basis ‘ – if B.J. were removed because of misdemeanors, so be it ( Tele. to the fore ) – if not, it sheds vital light for the near future, where there’s a possible election pending.

    In Rupert’s neocon world ( where he sits high ) , the B.J’s are dime-a-dozen … & younger models abound 🙂 ……. whilst Charlie Chaplin’s Switzerland medical adventures will have improved out of sight … 😉

  46. Matters Not

    KL, the millionaire in question owns a watering hole and, as I understand it, the Deputy PM is reputed to frequent such places and linger for significant periods. He’s a good customer and hence entitled to some special treatment.

    In the political world, each, any and every transgression can simply be explained away. QED!

    Perhaps he will soon be the barman.

  47. diannaart

    Maybe Centrelink needs to be brought in on this itinerant behaviour – no fixed address, living off the generosity of others, abandoning one family to start up another… must effect his employment prospects…

  48. Kaye Lee

    the key issues appear to be:

    No one has the numbers to effectively force Barnaby Joyce from the leadership
    They don’t believe there is any concrete reason to force him out
    They are worried about setting a precedent where a leader is forced out because of a morality issue
    Joyce believes he can ride it out
    The Queensland contingent are very worried about their election futures, and believe Joyce can pull them across the line against One Nation

  49. diannaart

    Wishing the Nationals would find BJ’s business dealings as offensive as they find his private pursuits.

    If everyone was to step down because of a one night’s stand or longer dalliance…

    As usual the focus is never on the needs of Australia.

  50. Matters Not

    Re:

    No one has the numbers

    Fantastic. They are hopelessly divided. Is the New National Party coming soon?

    don’t believe there is any concrete reason to force him out

    Great. As long as they continue to so believe.

    worried about setting a precedent where a leader is forced out because of a morality issue

    Yes, you can’t have morality in politics. Where would it end?

    believes he can ride it out

    The evidence suggest riding is one of his specialities.

    Queensland contingent are very worried about their election futures, and believe Joyce can pull them across the line against One Nation

    Yes, in Pauline they have an opponent whose sexual morality is beyond reproach. Just the same as us.

    The Monty Python writers are in awe. But they think it’s just too far out.

  51. Zathras

    If they happened in any other workplace politicians would call them “Union based rorts” but in their own case they regard them as “reasonable and fair entitlements”.

    That’s the problem when they control both the size and content of the trough into which they gleefully dig their snouts.

    Also, after several months of banning comment the reason Murdoch is moving against Joyce now is because there must be a broader agenda in play – probably an Abbott revival – and while the story is presented in this way they can still control it.

    So far there’s been no mention of other staffer mistresses or Barnaby’s drunken groping of teenagers so he still has a chance to make a reasonable exit rather than bringing all the sleazy behaviour into play, which would create far wider problems for the government to deal with.

  52. Kaye Lee

    How about special deals for mates….

    Barnaby gave a $3 million contract from the National Water Infrastructure Development Fund to two Queensland LNP party heavyweights for a study into Urannah Dam.

    http://www.abc.net.au/news/2016-09-22/company-run-by-lnp-members-linked-to-group-awarded-federal-funds/7865950

    Urannah Dam has “the potential to cement the future of Bowen and Galilee basin mines by offering water security for years to come.”

    https://www.dailymercury.com.au/news/lnp-to-start-urannah-dam-study-within-100-days/3255770/

  53. diannaart

    Kaye Lee

    I guess special deals for mates goes a long way in FNQ; George Christensen is most pleased with BJ, guess that’s why “good Christian” George is prepared to overlook Barnie’s rakish ways.

  54. jimhaz

    [Also, after several months of banning comment the reason Murdoch is moving against Joyce now is because there must be a broader agenda in play]

    Perhaps Gina has not coughed up her tithes for the Pro-Centralised Wealth Protection Racket that Murdoch runs on behalf of billionaires ie his loss making “news” media now run as propaganda outlets.

  55. OPPOSE THE MAJOR PARTIES

    “In terms of unhealthy workplaces, it’s one of the most unhealthy workplaces in the country.” Working under Barnaby Joyce is a the worst workplace of all

  56. Kaye Lee

    Interesting to see Gina’s son, John Hancock’s tuppence worth on the Joyce affair.

    ‘Barnaby has enjoyed his position to his advantage, wantonly causing pain to more than just two families (his old and new),’ he said.

    ‘He got involved in our family dispute and the judge condemned the pressure he put on us. This is why Barnaby is so dangerous to Australia- he is a person willing to act without considering the consequences, time and time again. Time to go, Barnaby, and don’t come running to Hancock for a job after the people wise up to you’.

    Mr Joyce had sent a letter to one of Mrs Rinehart’s daughters asking her to keep the family’s long-running dispute ‘in house’.

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-5388855/Gina-Rineharts-son-John-Hancock-slams-Barnaby-Joyce.html#ixzz574DTtsem

    See that’s Barnaby’s way….keep it “in-house”. If no-one talks about it then you didn’t do anything wrong. I am so sick of people saying he deserves privacy. He wants “privacy” (read no scrutiny) because he has been using his position to reward associates forever. That’s how Barnaby rolls. Manus manum lavat.

  57. Matters Not

    Re Joyce and his public utterances – on the record:

    Joyce … said in late January an anti-political corruption watchdog was unnecessary in Australia.

    Yes Barnaby is a living, breathing example that there’s no corruption in Australian politics.

    He says:

    didn’t want to get to the point “where people are scared for the government to govern”.

    “We don’t lack any capacity in our federal system to pursue issues that are a concern within the political frame,” he told Sky News. “We’ve got a Senate in federal politics which all the time calls inquiries, it can basically subpoena people, it has the capacity if there is a query to follow that through”.

    “I just don’t want to get to the position where people are scared for the government to govern and all that happens is departments govern, because any time you make a decision that’s different to your department you have the potential to end up in front of Icac, that would not be governing.”

    In arguing this line he echoes Abbott who:

    told Coalition colleagues the Turnbull government should not blindly follow Labor and create a federal integrity commission .. Abbott spoke at the regular party room meeting of Coalition MPs on Tuesday and was backed, according to colleagues, by the Queensland Liberal Stuart Robert, who was dumped two years ago from the Turnbull ministry following controversy over a “private” trip to Beijing to oversee a mining deal involving a major Liberal donor.

    Clearly Joyce, Abbott and Robert have (or had) nothing to hide. Existing mechanisms are failsafe apparently.

    In w hat parallel universe do they dwell. By the way, I am glad that Joyce survived today and hopefully many more days into the future. He is the albatross around the neck of the coalition. The overpowering smell that will not waft away.

    https://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/2018/feb/13/tony-abbott-urges-coalition-not-to-create-federal-integrity-body

  58. Kaye Lee

    After listening to Bridget McKenzie today, I was compelled to post on her facebook page….

    “To say you have had no negative comments is just not believable, though you did qualify it with “today”. I understand your position but puhlease, that statement would indicate you live in a silo. In what other workplace would it be acceptable for the married boss to create a high paying job for his pregnant staffer???? How come, in Israel, they view gifts of free accommodation and holidays as corruption but here it is just mates helping out mates? Would the man in question be donating holidays and free rental if Barnaby was not a politician? Are you all so used to the perks that you can’t see when you cross the line? Your calls for privacy are blatantly calls for no scrutiny. Not good enough!”

    PS I also note that in Jim Molan’s first speech today, which was predictably a call to war, he named Stuart Robert as his extra special friend.

  59. Matters Not

    Bridget had two bob each way today. Early, she was missing in action …

    Like a candle in the wind
    Never knowing who to cling to
    When the rain set in…

    So she didn’t know which way to cling with the political weather somewhat uncertain. She knows that Barnaby didn’t want her – preferring Canavan instead and that she only won the position because of the work done by Chester. For Barnaby she’s a second hand rose. and therefore the relationship is less than warm.

    As for Robert being a good mate of Jim, one should not be surprised. Did handy andy Hastie get a mention as well? Or is his rank a tad too low? Not that Jim places too much emphasis on hierarchy. LOL.

  60. Glenn Barry

    pfffft – Bridget McKenzie – the woman spews trite, dishonest, drivel whenever she opens her mouth – she is just another repugnant liar

  61. Kaye Lee

    I also posted on Bridget’s page….

    “Could I also point out that Barnaby’s former chief of staff, who reportedly made Barnaby fess up to Malcolm and insisted that Vikki be moved out of Barnaby’s office, now has a senior position with the Inland Rail project. I am sure she is very capable, just like Vikki, but the public perception is that you are paying people off. Barnaby has used his time in parliament to porkbarrel, to hand out grants to mates, to protect his and his donor’s interests. If he actually wanted to help people in regional Australia, he would have insisted on FttP NBN and real action on climate change. He wouldn’t have used hospital funding as an election sweetener to be abandoned when he decided he had it in the bag. Truly, if this is the standard you hold yourselves to, it is no wonder the rest of us are annoyed. Why are politicians held to much lower standards than the rest of us?”

    Interestingly, both comments were allowed to stand. But when I went on to Michael McCormack’s page and made no comment, other than a link to this article, it was removed seconds later, “marked as spam”.

    How politicians, or their staffers manning the social media pages more likely, react, is informative within itself.

    MN, I didn’t hear a mention of Hastie though I have to say, close attention was difficult because of the drivel spouted, but he paid homage to Scott Morrison and Tony Abbott – solidarity bros on stopping the boats.

    He also said we have to stop being cowardly in identifying our enemy in our next war and in proving to them how we can win it on our own without help from the US to make them realise they better not mess with us. Seriously, it was cringeworthy.

  62. Matters Not

    KL re:

    it was cringeworthy.

    So it was little (intellectually speaking) Jimmy Molan behaving as he always does (thick as a brick with no realisation of same). Compare Jim Molan with Dr Mike Kelly who also ‘served’ – like chalk and cheese methinks.

    As for recognising our enemy, broadly defined, Jimmy is clearly in that category. But such a comment would fly below his radar.

  63. Tracy McCahon

    Let’s on a National level, talk on behalf of the public about securing a referendum on a Federal Independent Commission against Corruption with autonomous funding, retrospective powers to jail corrupt politicians and those they collude with along with confiscation of assets as proceeds of crime. a clause to allow the public to submit concerns of political corruption to the ICAC and including Whistleblower protection Enshrined in our constitution to keep bent politicians such as Barnaby Joyce from perverting our Democracy. The stench of corruption in this government is systemic and endless.

  64. Miriam English

    I’m with Matters Not. I hope Barnaby Joyce remains in government up to the next election. It’s a travesty, I know, and if there was any justice he should be unemployed and in prison on corruption charges right now, but his remaining in position probably makes the LNP un-electable, and that’s a good thing, because as soon as an election is on the horizon Rupert will start flinging all the mud and shit he can at the opposition parties.

  65. Kaye Lee

    And now it turns out that, whilst Barnaby was briefly unemployed, the Nationals paid his salary. John Alexander did not enjoy the same largesse. Barnaby is a grubby grasping little man who uses his position to grab every advantage he can and then puts on his little boy aggrieved face when caught out. Free accommodation, free holidays, extra salary to tide him over when it is found he has lied on his stat dec. And we, the public, have had to pay for extra security to be installed in his mate’s flat. We paid for Barnaby to fly his family to Canberra and Sydney on numerous occasions because he couldn’t be bothered going home. We also paid him for 50 extra non-sitting nights spent in Canberra. One question – what the hell does Barnaby pay for himself?

  66. Miriam English

    Ummm… didn’t he pay for that block of land over the rich gas field that his pal in the land survey told him would make lots of money? Or did he use us to pay for that bit of corruption too?

  67. Matters Not

    ME, While Rupert (the foreigner) will throw his considerable weight behind the LNP, he always reserves his final position so that he can claim to be on the side of the winner. He did it with Rudd for example.

    Unfortunately Labor, too often, responds positively to these overtures and gets played for suckers. I suspect Shorten will be no different. They never seem to learn. Even Gough was tricked.

  68. Kaye Lee

    It’s not just Rupert. The ABC, in its obsequious attempt to deflect any accusations of bias, is giving enormous exposure to right wing commentators, politicians and lobbyists on a trusted media site. Watching shows like the Drum, Q&A and 7:30 report is becoming increasingly excruciating. I don’t mind listening to different opinions but I sure as hell mind listening to drivel from the likes of Georgina Downer or Rowan Deane or Rebecca Weisser or Miranda Devine or Stephen O’Doherty or Warren Mundine or…..the list is endless.

  69. Matters Not

    KL, it’s not confined to the TV. ABC Radio is also in decline. Sunday Morning saw Tom Switzer replace Jonathan Green. Not sure how that’s going, as I gave up listening.

    PS, your list above might include, and indeed, feature, Nick Cater – (partner of Weisser) – who sucks from the public teat via the Menzies Centre (approx. $240 000 pa) while decrying government hand-outs. Imagine having Cater and Weisser at a barbie. Now that’s a nightmare too horrendous to contemplate?

  70. Kaye Lee

    Or the Hendersons.

  71. ozibody

    Thank you Kaye Lee. You make a valid point about erosion of the ABC’s independent stance. The neoconservative machine is relentless, as it consistently pursues it’s objectives. Stays ‘on script’ – even in apparent state of chaos !

    At the risk of appearing ‘ conspiratorial ‘; apart from obvious (ranking) appointments such as the like of Ms.Guthrie, i wonder just what an objective review of ABC staffing changes over the last 18 ,or so, months would reveal in terms of reduced objectivity.

    I’ve recently read about the BBC being accused of ‘ telling lies ‘. With that once bastion of integrity appearing to come under a cloud, it could well be in the Australian Public’s interest to increase awareness about ‘ our ‘ ABC.

  72. Glenn Barry

    ozibody – I just checked the ABC board appointments, all but one who is a staff elected representative have been during the LNP coalition’s reign.

    Kaye Lee, the Henderson’s are the worst pair of trite liars that I have ever witnessed, you clearly have more patience than I do because I find them infuriating, the only reason I haven’t jettisoned the TV over the balcony, rock star style, is the mute button for whenever they speak.

    On another front the friends of the ABC have published a fact sheet refuting the untruthful claims of ABC bias and clearly showing the ABC as trusted amongst the Australian population with 80% or higher.

    https://www.abcfriends.org.au/index.php/2018/02/15/abc-fact-sheet-released/

  73. Rhonda

    Trouble is, Ozibody, they are very much attempting to increase public attention regarding our ABC – I couldn’t quite grasp why qanda dragged out the new/old abc- left bias dog whistle as a point of “discussion” this week…then again, I also couldn’t quite grasp why I was bothered to tune in. Same goes for The Drum(roll)cuerightwingapologists. Plus, Switzer unforgivably ruined Sunday mornings at my place. Give me FDotM over effing Kenny any day

  74. Kronomex

    The only show I watch on LNPP(ropaganda)ABC channel is Mad as Hell at least until some whining bloody LNP pollie complains about “bias” and the show is either cancelled or not renewed then it’s bye-bye. Will Shorten rebuild the ABC? All we can do is wait and see.

    If, and that’s a fairly big if, Joyce either resigns or is kicked out or gets the chop at the next election (I won’t surprised if they vote him back in) Gina out of the goodness…urk…of her greedy corporate little heart will probably give the Bonker a cushy job as a lobbyist.

  75. Kyran

    Somebody at ‘The Age’ has a sense of humour. Underneath the front page story of Bananas ex gratia payment from the Gnat’s, was ‘Odd Spot’. Today’s was the story of a woman who was so consumed by her guilt at having stolen a bar of soap from a department store when she was 12 years old, that she returned to the store as a 30 year old with 100 bars of soap. Et tu, Bananas?

    Some little known facts about Gnat’s, from the wiki. “They can be both biting and non-biting.” It would appear that those Gnat’s defending Bananas can bite. At least our esteemed media think so. As to those who can’t bite? Welcome to the rest of the world, where the media will ignore you until you go away. Wiki also says “Most often they fly in large numbers, called clouds.” Whilst there can be little doubt they are in the clouds, the ‘large numbers’ is probably using Trump calculus.

    Jamieson Murphy, from the ‘Northern Daily Leader’, reported on the 29th November, 2017, on the Hat Flick Incident;

    “Fairfax Media has been approached by the man at the centre of the spat and then also spoke to a witness to the incident, which took place during an informal political meet and greet.”

    Wait a minute. That can’t be. The media has been telling us for more than a week they couldn’t find anyone to verify any of the grubby little rumours. Yet they could talk with Bananas alleged stalker in November, 2017, at the Graman Hotel?

    “The man said he had canvassed friends on “What would you like me to ask Barnaby?” before he arrived, so “I had a big list of questions to ask”.
    “He was friendly initially and then I asked him whether he was going to pay back the money he had earned while he was illegally in parliament. That obviously hit a nerve,” the man said.
    “Then he’s like, ‘Who are you with? Who sent you?’ I’m like, ‘I’m with no one’.”
    The man said that he had mentioned mining magnate Gina Rinehart’s $40,000 agriculture award (which Mr Joyce declined) and “he took umbrage with that”.”

    The Phantom that could not be located by the media talked to the media in November! This just can’t be. History has the ‘Ghost who walks’, contemporary Australia has the ‘Phantom who stalks’. So, what happened then?

    ““One of them threatened to throw me down the stairs,” he said.
    “Barnaby said, ‘Mate, you’re being a goose … I’m going over there’ and he walked off.”
    The man said about half an hour later, as Mr Joyce was leaving, he came back over.
    “He shook my hand and I said, ‘Barnaby, I’d like to make your life difficult because it seems nobody is asking you the difficult questions’ or words to that effect,” the man said.”

    Ah, ain’t that sweet? Bananas is a good bloke. But wait, there’s more.

    “As Mr Joyce moved to the door the man made the statement about the candidate’s personal life.
    “He stormed back in … and loomed over me, hissing ‘What did you just say’? He was definitely being very threatening,” the man said.”

    https://www.google.com/url?q=http://www.northerndailyleader.com.au/story/5090597/the-other-side-of-the-hat-flicking-barny-at-the-pub/&sa=U&ved=0ahUKEwj1u8HqpJfZAhUKUbwKHWoFDEQQFggFMAA&client=internal-uds-cse&cx=012527284968046999840:zlx8zny6z6a&usg=AOvVaw1VCzWqdy25f5X0qIuiTPtr

    Hmmm, what did he say that evoked such a response but they did not report? Ah well, moving right along, then the ‘hat flick’, referral to the AFP and those immortal words. My private life is private. The hat flick is, technically, assault. The AFP are, apparently, still looking into it. They seem to be looking into matters about government people a lot, don’t they? No wonder they can’t actually complete an investigation, with this crap lobbing into their ‘In Tray’ so regularly.
    What is bemusing is that that same reporter from that same newspaper wrote on the 13th February, 2018;

    “The Leader, like many other news organisations, was aware of the claims and social media had been awash with comments since the by-election was called. Like many news outlets The Leader investigated the claims.”

    Really? Hmmm. What did that bloke say in November, when you interviewed him, that you did not report back then?

    “Then came the hat-flicking incident in a small-town pub north of Inverell. The Leader learnt, from multiple sources, that the comment that had set Mr Joyce off was “say hi to your mistress for me”.”

    Wait a minute. One of the ‘multiple sources’ was actually involved in the incident, but you couldn’t verify the story because Bananas office said ‘Nah, nah, not telling’?

    “In the last week of the by-election we were inundated with social media accusations that The Leader was “protecting” the Joyce campaign by hiding comments posted about an “affair”.
    However, the court of public opinion is not the court we have to stand before in a defamation case.
    For the handful of rumours which have proven to be true there were dozens swirling which were not.
    One such rumour that persists was that was one of Mr Joyce’s daughters was driving down Peel St in a car with “Barnaby Joyce” branding, yelling at people not to vote for him through a megaphone.
    Knowing the family personally, they have told me it did not happen.”

    http://www.northerndailyleader.com.au/story/5215548/insight-how-the-leader-tried-to-get-answers-on-barnaby-joyces-affair/?cs=161

    Soooo, wait a minute. The reporter knew the family personally and they confirmed it was not a daughter yelling at the people through a megaphone in a campaign vehicle. Did the reporter ask if they knew who it was? Did the reporter ask them to confirm any of the ‘other rumours’ floating around? The handful of rumours that have been proven to be true versus the ‘dozens’ (of which only one is mentioned) which were not?
    The ‘handful’ apparently are things like rent free accommodation, jobs for the girls, expenses that aren’t right, lying to the public (and his own family), taxpayer funded security upgrades (which his benefactor will, presumably, declare as ‘capital improvements’ for rates purposes), and so on.
    As an observation, family law in Australia is such that the only criteria for divorce is twelve months separation. What date will Bananas state on the Divorce Application? It does have relevance in establishing when the ‘other relationship’ commenced.
    Clearly, Joyce is one of the ‘bitey’ Gnat’s. His amigo’s see him as the only defence against One Notion in Queensland. For every day the Gnat’s keep him, there will be another rort uncovered. Whether it be your partner not being your partner, your benefactor not being your benefactor, or just the complete and utter contempt shown to us by those who are meant to serve us, the politicians, and those who are meant to protect us, the MSM.
    It will be these same fools who wonder why there is no trust in politicians and sweet FA trust in MSM.

    “Barnaby in his own words said he made a mistake, you can only feel for his wife and his daughters, the whole situation is a mess of his own making, he admits that.
    “Has he broken the law? No. Has he acted immorally? Yes.”

    And so says the protector of our morals and upholder of the law.

    Peter Dutton, on 2GB this morning.

    Well, Bananas better be careful. Dutton has form for deporting dual citizens who break the law.
    Mediocre?
    Thanks again, Ms Lee and commenters. Take care

  76. diannaart

    Watching the death by a thousand cuts of the ABC, post Howard, is beyond frustrating and disheartening. Frustrating because if the ABC finally fails (insufficient public viewing) that will be sufficient reason to begin to privatise. Disheartening because there remain ABC employees from before the LNP/Murdoch/IPA contamination, who strive to present facts, while treading a perilous path between appeasing their overlords and questioning same overlords – while not losing their jobs.

    ABC moral – tense and no doubt, infighting between colleagues just to stay alive.

    What will Bill Shorten do? It is likely Labor WILL win, all that’s needed is another (yes it takes an awful lot) scandal leaving the LNP even more fractured and unworkable.

    Thanks for ABC friends list, will check it out when I return home.

  77. ozibody

    Thank you Glen Barry. It is a simple, and obvious, truth that the neoconservative ‘white ant’ is a 24 hour machine , working tirelessly to script.

    On the basis of ‘the fish rotting from the head’ Ms. Guthrie, along with board support, is certain to pursue their inherent principles.

    The ‘how to boil a Frog’ policy is in action around us every day – ( not all that conspiratorial ).

  78. Kaye Lee

    I do find this whole Barnaby thing bizarre. Bridget McKenzie said the people ringing her office were 100% behind Barnaby. Does she really need people to ring her to tell her this is inappropriate behaviour for a party leader?

    As Peter van Onselen put it today “According to the logic of the government a Nationals leader could literally moon the nation as long as he retained the support of 10 other members who didn’t grasp the inappropriateness of doing so.”

    This is how Don Burke was allowed to get away with behaving so badly for so long – he had a high rating show so he could behave how he pleased.

  79. Kaye Lee

    Very interesting….they just announced that Matthias Cormann will be acting PM next week.

  80. Glenn Barry

    Kaye Lee, I look forward to the next set of ratings for the Bribery Joke travelling National Show, AKA poll results.

    Bribery Joke is taking next week off from parliament, must have a note from his mother, gets him conveniently out of the way of awkward questions in parliament – I bet Maljudgement thought that was a tricky solution to a sticky situation.

    Co-incidentally that disingenuous smirk, which normally graces Truncoat’s face masquerading as a smile, has taken on a torturous aspect and it now looks like he’s got an excruciating dose of acute constipation.

  81. Kaye Lee

    Penny Wong just asked a question about how many government contracts Barnaby or his agencies had given to the millionaire who is lending him the house and quoted one example of a $5000 contract. The question was taken “on notice”.

  82. ozibody

    One wonders, Kaye Lee …. Could Security need to be elevated for Mr. C’s principal place of residence, as a consequence of his (temporary) elevated status.

    During the B.J hub hub I heard (unverified) that the Security was uplifted on B.J’s Armidale quarters – much of which would remain after his departure … thus improving the property value for his kind friend !

    Passing the parcel can come with rewards! … in the neocon world.

  83. paul walter

    Cormann symbolises the ascendancy of the hard right. The vindictive Nats, Abbott and Dutton and co have a measure of revenge and Turnbull must be weakened fatally in the long run for this loss of face.

    As for Bishop, what a kick in the face from the old reactionaries, including Cormann, Bishop’s WA factional rival.

  84. paul walter

    You know, sitting here musing, going back a decade Howard and Kevin 07 and what appeared to be the consignment of the nineteenth century and its basket of deplorables to the historical desert of the nineteenth century where they belonged. A new age of enlightenment seemed to have dawned.

    Labor did squib on a few things; the ABC and the Intervention come to mind but did flirt with a more humane asylum seeker policy before backing off with that also.

    But things looked good until Turnbull got caught out on Gretch and the knuckle walker Right in the form of Tony Abbott emerged and from there on things went downhill.

    Fast forward to now, we saw the second reconsignment of the knucklewalkers to the cultural desert and Turnbull reborn. But Turnbull has turned into an even bigger heart-breaker than Abbott and the hard right gather like vultures, incapable of imagining anything better than medieval oligarchy, while expediency and opportunity driven unscrupulous Turnbull forsakes Bishop as Joyce forsook his wife, and the city Liberals lose their fight against the reactionaries.

    Not for nothing was obergruppenfuhrer Dutton left in safe keeping while all this goes on.

  85. jimhaz

    For myself, I think the world has muslim problem because they do not drink alcohol. Alcohol opens up openness and enables one to laugh at themselves, which many muslims cannot do. I think like dope, alcohol in confusing the brain allows more scope for lateral thinking.

    This alcohol fueled lateral thinking is the major difference between the white technological evolved heritage and others – if there was no alcohol we’d be religious fundamentalists.

    For all its many evils, I still give it the thumbs up at the whole of society level. At the individual level though, its a destroyer and killer for so many.

  86. paul walter

    Jimhaz, we are in deep shit BECAUSE Barnaby drinks so much alcohol. If they keep it it up they’ll drive ME to drink also.

  87. helvityni

    PM gives Barnaby some time to rest; having two families is a bit too much for him to handle…a baby on the way, and sleepless nights still to come…
    A good politician might at times feel a bit tired too…for different reasons though : he/she has worked to improve the lot of ALL citizens of the country…

  88. paul walter

    And where is msm? The ABC scheduled parliament but the golf is on and ABC24 can usually find hours if not days to waste on military ceremonies and “terrierism”, but nothing on Cormann, they are doing people falling off trampolines.

    Are you sure about Cormann, Kaye Lee?

  89. helvityni

    Cormann was a safe bet; he’ll just rattle on and on about how everything is Labor’s fault, he’ll do it in his usual sleep-inducing , monotone fashion…

  90. Chris

    @jimhaz

    “For myself, I think the world has muslim problem because they do not drink alcohol. Alcohol opens up openness and enables one to laugh at themselves, which many muslims cannot do. I think like dope, alcohol in confusing the brain allows more scope for lateral thinking.

    This alcohol fueled lateral thinking is the major difference between the white technological evolved heritage and others – if there was no alcohol we’d be religious fundamentalists.

    For all its many evils, I still give it the thumbs up at the whole of society level. At the individual level though, its a destroyer and killer for so many.”

    My son, after reading this comment, suggested “That is obviously why people drink and drive…..because it ‘opens the mind’….”

    He is a good lad and more sensible than you will ever be.

    You seem to forget that a lot of Christianity is about turning wine into blood which is obviously silly AND fundamentalist…..

  91. Chris

    Yes even my 14 year old son thinks you are an incomprehensible idiot Jim.

  92. jimhaz

    Quoting Sir Les Patterson.

    “Sex is the most beautiful thing that can take place between a happily married man and his secretary.”

    Doesn’t Joyce remind you of him!

  93. jimhaz

    [Jimhaz, we are in deep shit BECAUSE Barnaby drinks so much alcohol. If they keep it it up they’ll drive ME to drink also.]

    “All substances are poisons; there is none that is not a poison. The right dose differentiates a poison and a remedy.”

  94. Kaye Lee

    So Malcolm agrees with us and has just introduced the Bonking Ban for Ministers and said that Barnaby needs to reflect on his position over the next week.

  95. Kaye Lee

    Turnbull’s press conference was a complete turnaround to the line run all week that people’s private lives are none of our business and we are not the morality police etc etc. Turnbull said it was a shocking error of judgement that has brought a world of woe and that, if Barnaby did it tomorrow, he would be sacked from the Ministry. Turnbull is belatedly realising that perhaps politicians should raise the standard just a tad – well Ministers anyway.

    So now that they have been told they may not root their staff (rolls eyes), perhaps we could also point out that they shouldn’t drink whilst working?

  96. diannaart

    Would love to have some stats on how much bonking (consensual – trying to keep it simple) occurs involving alcohol.

    I think telling people when and with whom to bonk, is a dumb move on the part of Turnbull. More focus on responsible wielding of power would be more productive. However, “responsible wielding of power” and the Australian, English and USA political system – not a happening thing.

    As for Jimhaz’s comment that drinking breaks down barriers – sharing food does this even better and is far more inclusive of men, women and children.

  97. paul walter

    It is a medical fact that alcohol stimulates female hormones.

  98. paul walter

    Am not amused at Turnbull. It is NOT about sex, it is about rorting and corruption.

  99. paul walter

    jimhaz, he is bent on so many issues it isn’t a joke.

    Berejiklian from NSW and her corrupt ministers should also be in a deep shit as to water theft on a huge scale, as 4 Corners pointed out recently.

  100. Kronomex

    Jimhaz @3.49 pm: I guess, by your reckoning, that means World War 2 would not have occurred if Hitler had been a drinker? You make yourself look a cretin and fool with idiotic statements like that.

  101. Chris

    @Kronomex

    Indeed

  102. diannaart

    Paul

    Am not amused at Turnbull. It is NOT about sex, it is about rorting and corruption.

    Turnbull is doing the old dog whistle tirick – making it about sex, when it IS about rorting and corruption.

    PS

    Alcohol brings on ovulation… 😛

  103. Chris

    So according to Senator Whish-Wilson Australia as part of our weapons export program is going to offer purchasers “buyer finance” where the weapons purchaser gets to ‘pay later’ through some sort of government funded gift.

    A ‘kill to buy’ financing system, if you will.

    …so I will hear no criticism of the Greens Senators as they always ask the most interesting and relevant questions.

    I received a letter from my Attorney Genital Mutilator and the Labor Party sucks even larger dogs balls than I had initially thought.

  104. paul walter

    Diannaart. No.

    It DEcreases ovulation. However, it does cause release of hormones that create randiness in women.

  105. Miriam English

    More likely is that alcohol increases screwing for the same reason drunk people think they’re able to drive safely: it clouds intelligent judgement — that is, it makes people temporarily more stupid while making them think their judgement is unimpaired, or even improved.

    jimhaz probably wrote his nutty statement about alcohol and Muslims while intoxicated. A perfect example of how badly it can damage someone’s judgement. All drugs mess with perception of reality in some way. They should be avoided if you want to make smart decisions about the world.

    An old and dear friend of mine has basically gone crazy as a result of alcohol use. She was having temper tantrums as a result of binge drinking and tried to prove to herself that she wasn’t an alcoholic by simply stopping. She wasn’t so dependent on alcohol as to have convulsions and death, but it did cause her to have a psychotic break with full-blown paranoia. It had such a vivid effect on her mind that after 3 years she still believes the delusions of persecution and has gone back to drinking, worse than ever. It scares the freaking daylights out of me that this drug is accepted as effectively harmless in society and even considered by many to be beneficial. It is terrifying that those who steer our country (generally not the smartest people in the first place) are habitually sloshed, with an unknown number likely alcoholics.

  106. diannaart

    Paul – are you serious? Thought you were joking.

    Of course alcohol does not trigger ovulation – any more than it “creates randiness”.

    As Miriam pointed out, alcohol dulls inhibition – both women AND men. Which is why a lot of (unwanted) sex may occur, fights break out and politicians chase staff around or break coffee tables – not necessarily at the same time.

    I thought better of you Paul – has Joe Carli been putting something in your drink?

  107. ozibody

    Whilst watching the film clip of Mr. T making that announcement I I felt his ‘indignation’ was somewhat confected ….. like a Father exerting his authority! Maybe the Nats picked up on this tone and wont have a bar of it – given that B.J. slipped thru the net of public opinion, thus escalating a sense of superiority.

    Ego ever to the front & centre!

  108. Kenitha

    Yes Miriam, in a more enlightened society politicians would be breath-tested at work.
    Anything > 0.00% and the choice is either return home and sober up or stay at work in a dedicated sobering-up / non-bonking room until normal function returns. They could call the room the ‘Zzzone’, a good place to stow the sleepy-heads.
    I once read the definition of what constitutes being an alcoholic and was shocked. I was an alcoholic. Sounds like your friend has realized she is alco and tried to escape via the wrong route. Has she tried the 12 Steps program? It’s frightening to see how many people are alcoholic, yet in denial. There must be something fundamentally flawed in the way our society is structuring itself for that to be the case. Ever read War and Peace?

  109. Matters Not

    Think strategically! Leave Barnaby alone. (With apologies to Coleridge.)

    Ah! well a-day! what evil looks

    Had I from old and young!

    Instead of the cross, the Barnaby

    About my neck was hung.

    Look what happened when the public turned against Abbott. The result was just a cosmetic make-over. Same policies. Same old, same old and the Conservatives then won the next election.

    Barnaby is doing an excellent job in destroying the LNP. He shows Turnbull’s absolute impotence for all to see. Leave him be. Just watch.

  110. Miriam English

    Kenitha, yes. I think large parts of our society are actually alcoholic. Dog knows how many of the terrible things our society is doing are because of that. My friend went along to one meeting of AA, but never went back because they talk about a higher power, and she has little patience for religion. I’m frankly scared for her future.

    I haven’t read Leo Tolstoy’s “War and Peace” yet. It’s on my reading list, but has been there for a long time. One day I’ll get around to it. Ages ago I downloaded it from Project Gutenberg http://www.gutenberg.org/ebooks/2600 however I might be better off with the Internet Archive’s version, which includes a commentary https://archive.org/details/WarandPeace_201709 or maybe it would be better to listen to it as about 60 hours of audio from LibriVox https://librivox.org/author/217
    Why do you mention it?

    Again, I agree with Matters Not. The horrible, grotesque Barnaby Joyce is doing a wonderful job of damaging the LNP. He might even manage to tear apart the Coalition, which would be fantastic!

  111. Kenitha

    Miriam, “Dog knows how many of the terrible things our society is doing” because of alcoholism. From a certain perspective that looks true but from my own experience becoming alcoholic looks more like the inevitable result of surrounding conditions and I think that’s true of all alcoholics.
    Mention of ‘War and Peace’ was a bit cryptic. Any attempts to properly understand alcoholism and find solutions are bigger than Ben Hur. Still I recommend 12 Steps. If your friend substitutes ‘highest intelligence’ for ‘higher power’ that might work in her favor. Thanks for the links. Ever read Ben Hur?

  112. paul walter

    Ken A would you reckon Joyce might be a good candidate for a lifestyle change?

  113. Miriam English

    Kenitha, it’s always amazed me that so many people think that society “turns people to drink”. I guess I shouldn’t be surprised; the idea is constantly reinforced in movies, books, and TV. How many times have I seen a person who has experienced something traumatic offered a drink as if it was the natural thing to do? It really is appalling. That is exactly the very worst thing to do in such a situation.

    Some years ago I read of a study in New Scientist in which soldiers who had experienced trauma were either given drugs (tranquillisers or sleepers, or alcohol) or had no chemical assistance. The ones without the chemicals recovered well, but the ones that used chemical aid experienced high levels of post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). It was conjectured that the chemicals interrupted the mental repair mechanisms the mind uses to deal with stress. I tend to think that it actually multiplies the stress, because as well as having to overcome the external stress you have the added stress of recovering from the chemical assault on your brain.

    Unfortunately I can’t recommend anything to my friend. Since I tried to get her to understand that the root cause of all her problems is the volume of alcohol she consumes, she no longer speaks to me.

    I haven’t read Ben Hur http://www.gutenberg.org/ebooks/2145 even though I downloaded it ages ago… and I doubt I will. As I age, I find I have less patience for religious tales, and there are so many utterly brilliant works out there to savor. I keep stumbling across gems on Project Gutenberg by authors I’d never heard of, and audio files all over the net, and even movies on archive.org (for example the wonderful 1920 silent movie “The Mark of Zorro” starring the amazing Douglas Fairbanks — the Jackie Chan of his era) https://archive.org/details/vidzo The world is full of such treasures!

  114. Kaye Lee

    Miriam,

    I tried reading War and Peace after I won it as a prize at school. I gave up. I went back and made myself read it decades later because I thought I should. In my opinion, I wasted a great deal of time.

  115. Miriam English

    Thanks, Kaye. I value your opinion very highly, so War and Peace has slipped a lot lower in my reading list. Considering how long my reading list is, I might not even get to it before the day I drop dead.

    So many things to read, so little time…

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