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This Grand Mediocrity

When I was 16 and still at school, Brother Egbert occasionally tried to teach us some of the more rudimentary elements of economics. But, he being a Marist brother, and my school being a Catholic College, the subject invariably got muddied and soon went missing in the deeper waters of the religious perspective. Still, he did his best. My memories of Brother Egbert came back last week watching bits and pieces of the speech given by Tony Abbott at the World Economic Forum in Davos. What can I say other than he did his mediocre best.

Tony Abbott spoke to the attendees at the forum in similar, monotonous undertones of simplicity as Brother Egbert spoke to us. At best, Abbott sounded like a Vatican appointed Honorary Prelate exercising jurisdiction over the faithful and the converted trying to impart the teachings of the privileged few. And the information (teaching) passed on was, again, spoken in similarly simplistic terms to a point of being juvenile. I get so tired of listening to Abbott speak about anything. It is consistently so lame-brain, so one-dimensional and skewed as to suggest neither he, nor his writers, his minders or his colleagues are able to grasp its immaturity. Recalling his past comments about the Syrian crisis as “the baddies against the baddies”, or to GMH workers about to lose their jobs as being “liberated” smacks of an intelligence vacuum, a naivety that one would only tolerate from year 7 students at school. And to then demonstrate that same vacuum, that same naivety at an international forum where one expects to hear inspiring words of leadership, direction and moral responsibility can only leave those who heard it wondering how we, in Australia, could have elected such a man to lead us. And how do we answer that? One might argue that we have been the victims of some strange alignment in the cosmic order, where the stars of misfortune gathered to offer a celestial mirage that pretended to be something it was not. But that is not true either. We knew exactly who we were electing and we did it anyway.

Glancing across the transcripts of Abbott’s speech left me breathless for its infantile minimalism. Is this really the best he had to offer? Most prominent was the now often repeated Rush Limbaugh phrase, “No country ever taxed its way to prosperity.” Abbott uttered this quote not for the first time (although I have never heard him acknowledge its source), from the man whom Ronald Reagan once thanked, “for all you’re doing to promote Republican and conservative principles.” You remember Reagan; he was the president who believed in the principle of trickle-down economics that in 1988 left America with the largest government debt that country had ever experienced. And what an incredibly stupid and short-sighted quote it is! Every western democratic country in the world has taxed their way to prosperity using a balanced combination of capital markets and individual contributions that, in return, provide infrastructure and social programs like health care, education and aged care to reward those who spend their working lives paying those taxes. And the companies and individuals in those countries who pay the taxes are the beneficiaries. If you are looking for countries who tried to be prosperous without proper taxation you come up with the former Soviet Union, Mao Ze Dong’s China and pretty much all of Communist Eastern Europe. And, oh yes, the Reagan/Bush years of the United States of America.

Some of Abbott’s other classic references at Davos included, “Stronger growth requires lower, simpler and fairer taxes that don’t stifle business creativity.” That was the policy of George W Bush’s presidency that led to the GFC. Bush pandered to the princes of Wall Street and they did him proud, until their greed brought them down. In the process the rest of the world came down with them and today we are still climbing out of the hole they dug for us. So, rather than try to sell Australia, its past achievements and all it has to offer, Abbott would rather employ phrases from past conservatives of the US Republican party and try, so lamely, to stick the boot into our previous Labor government with, “You don’t address debt and deficit with yet more debt and deficit.” Well Tony, I have news for you. That is exactly what your government will be doing over the next three years. In the meantime, Paul Bloxham, the chief economist at HSBC’s Australian head office gives Labor its due. “I think the response to the global financial crisis by the previous government was actually the right response in terms of supporting growth in the short run,” he said.

There is so much evidence out there to vindicate the previous government’s management one would have thought that the message had got through. But instead, Abbott boldly preaches the Reagan/Bush philosophy, the philosophy that created the ingredients for the GFC. Not content with that, Abbott goes one step further with the most hypocritical comment of all when he called upon the world, “to honour their agreements and live in justice and charity with their neighbours”. This from the man whose government, at this very moment, is vehemently defending itself at the International Court of Justice in The Hague against claims ASIO stole vital documents from the offices of East Timor’s Canberra lawyer, Bernard Collaery.

Our present government is so ideologically opposed to anything that remotely resembles a balance between growth and social equality that they cannot see how a market driven economy performs far more effectively with well paid, highly skilled, highly educated workers receiving benefits and incentives. Their attitude to social equality suggests they think it is a by-product of a market driven economy, not a partner with it. They only know how to do this when they have a barrel load of money, from sources they weren’t expecting, as happened when John Howard and Peter Costello were in control. When times are tough they don’t know how to manage and always default to cutting spending in the areas of social welfare. Listening (so painfully) to Tony Abbott’s speech at Davos last week only served to confirm that.

One can only lament this grand mediocrity so reminiscent of the efforts of Brother Egbert and dream of better days ahead.

John Kelly blogs at: The View from My Garden


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  1. PeterF

    Now Abbott has called for another ‘independent’ investigation into wind farm sickness. I believe that Abbott’s financial advisor Maurice Newman is linked to the Waubro Foundation, a so called ‘Charity’ set up to spread misinformation about wind farms. We should all read this report from the University of Sydney which sets out the ‘science’ being promulgated by those opposed to Wind Farms. It shows how the internet can be manipulated by those with an agenda to pursue.
    and another link which shows connections to the IPA :

  2. John Kelly

    Reblogged this on THE VIEW FROM MY GARDEN and commented:

    Glancing across the transcripts of Abbott’s speech at Davos left me breathless for its infantile minimalism. Is this really the best he had to offer?

  3. Russ

    I would really like to know who wrote the speech he gave at Davos – if only so that we could be sure they never get another chance to put this sort of rubbish up as a serious contribution to an important gathering again. It’s a national embarrassment.

  4. Billy moir

    I have met only a few Rhodes scholars for comparison but this man shows that the selection process is flawed. His Catholicism was the basis for selection then and now it drives his thoughts and actions floating on belief unfettered by evidence.
    Dear little billy,
    Isn’t it obvious the rabbott is floundering and the media just need a little push. where is plibersek pointing out how the rabbott selected no women in his cabinet and his deputy is only there because the party selected her and he was too chicken to do the right thing and dump her. where is Wong on what robb has done in Korea and who know where else? Where is butler?certainly Turnbull and half the libs were for carbon trading why isn’t mark explaining how hunt(I think he was one for trading) will tax us and pay the polluters. Why isn’t Bowen laughing at little Joey’s borrowing billions and rejecting billions of your revenue like the tax on 100+K super or any of the 48 rejected so far. Where is Clare on copper and the rabbott’s declaration that 25mbps is good enough for us(does the rabbott now know what download speed is??) when India complains 50mbs is too slow. Why aren’t you laughing at the rabbott’s pathetic speech at the G20. Where is Dreyfus giving us an insight into the character of exlawyer brandis through his book buying with our money, including those leather bound tomes (a few choice titles??) and his bookcase or his style of freedom of speech where the rich or insured can say anything they like about anybody they don’t like with impunity whilst getting rid of commission’s that we citizens can get redress for untrue accusations or unsubstantiated remarks without losing our house in the courts. Get rid of the ratbag and get someone with credibility to challenge Joyce over agriculture. Where is Neumann pointing out the rabbott’s promise to the yolngu? How depressing is it when we pay extra to 45 of you and what are we getting for our money? You are no better than the rabbott’s team of miserable twits most of whom never asked a relevant question to show they were actually shadowing anyone.

  5. Billy moir

    Peter have a re-listen to the rabbott talking to jones on lateline. His responses are priceless. I am not sure he realises that the wind is the power behind our bush means of delivering water for the stock!

  6. diannaart

    Great encapsulation of my thoughts, John Kelly.

    The following needs to be recited at the beginning of parliament instead of the Lord’s Prayer – as it actually means something (unlike some prayer for Christians):

    Our present government is so ideologically opposed to anything that remotely resembles a balance between growth and social equality that they cannot see how a market driven economy performs far more effectively with well paid, highly skilled, highly educated workers receiving benefits and incentives. Their attitude to social equality suggests they think it is a by-product of a market driven economy, not a partner with it.

    Equity does not mean the majority blighted with the excreta from above, it is a process, a conscious process to ensure what has become something of a joke in Australia: A Fair Go.

  7. Kerri

    Well said John Kelly. Sadly so true.
    When I heard, albeit only snippets, of Abbott’s WEF embarassment I, having been a secondary teacher, said to my daughter, studying to be a secondary teacher, that it reminded me of the sort of talk I would criticise my students for. Where you say “do a talk on the Olympics” and a week later the kid fronts up and says it’s called the Olympics, it started in Olympia, it’s a sporting event. There are lots of sports played at the Olympics. The symbol is 5 rings. Climbing mountains is a wonderful thing.The sky is blue. The grass is green and I have done no research.
    In regards to why we voted for him? The world will see us as foolishly so arrogant in our position as the country to have sucessfully escaped the GFC that we paid no attention to our own politics and voted accordingly. A bit like Narcissus and the water. Whenever I think about Abbott in the position he so does not deserve I am reminded of the joke about the body and who is in control. You know? The eyes say they see so they are the most important. The brain says it thinks so it is the most important. The feet say they control where the body goes so they are the most important. Finally the asshole claims the top job by shutting up tight and not letting anything out until the entire body gets sick and gives up and admits the asshole is the boss.

  8. Damo

    The ‘Abbott’ effect is really quite disturbing and was plain to see from the day he ousted Turnbull. Just take a look at his effect on all of those around him.

    Perhaps I’m being naive to think that some of these people were really ‘good blokes’ B.A. (Before Abbott) but I knew the likes of Laming personally and had previously admired him and been impressed by his smarts. Today however, and for the last few years, he’s been nothing but the court jester, repeatedly making the papers for his idiotic statements and social media fopars.

    Would anyone have thought that Turnbull would so turn so far to the Dark Side? Really? His ‘work’ on the NBN has been worthy of a Murdoch Award, such is the blatant dishonesty and outright stupidity involved in his ‘contribution’. I won’t go on forever dealing turn by turn with the loonies who appear to have taken over the asylum; my main point being how troubling it is that a previously crack outfit under Howard appears to have cracked as it were under Abbott. Many of us saw it of course and we’re left asking WTF? But seriously, what the hell happened here?

    I don’t abdicate responsibility for the shower of shite that we have today entirely away from Labor as quite frankly they were nothing short of a joke outfit themselves but even Blind Freddy could see that Abbott and his crew weren’t going to improve the situation.

    The sad reality is that Australians voted these muppets into Government. What conclusion can we seriously draw from this? That Australians are on the whole disengaged and didn’t realise what they were voting for? That Australians are racist bogans who so simply answered the call? That in fact the majority of Australians are entirely stupid?

    I really don’t know. Common sense would dictate that the answer is likely a combination of all of the above. We can only then hope that it is more the former option and that a couple of years of this farce will force people to re-engage, come out of their daze and get a grip.

  9. JohnB

    Thank you John Kelly for an excellent summary of the slow but sure destruction of capitalism by myopic avarice and political opportunism,
    It is so sad that the quality journalism we regularly enjoy here on AIMN, IA and some other 5th estate sites is denied the general populace by MSM’s ideologically fixated proprietors.

    Mediocrity is what we are stuck with for the next 3yrs., and I guess it goes without saying in 18 months time Rupert & MSM will be out of Abbott/LNP cruise mode and back into full boost for the next federal election.
    The release of a new barrage of media propaganda may well be not as successful as that culminating in Abbott’s 2013 election, especially if a few very unpleasant chickens come home to roost in the near future to spoil their corporate gluttony carnival.
    It is one thing to tell lies, its another to cause Australia to live those lies – unfortunately, economic and scientific lies have serious, possibly irreversible consequences.

    The continuing decline towards collapse of the US economy is the direct result of 30+ yrs of ‘trickle down’ and business/banking/labour deregulation (compounded by a domestically ineffective stimulus program [QE]) that has worsened wealth inequality.
    Yet, despite this ominous dire lesson from history, Abbott intends to take us down this same discredited ‘trickle down’/ deregulation path.

    AGW is worsening, the polar ice is still melting, glaciers retreating, extreme weather events occurring with greater regularity and intensity, oceans acidifying, methane clathrates are gassing, land/ocean temperatures rising.
    Yet, Abbott defies overwhelming scientific evidence to dismantle effective amelioration action and lift environmental protection measures and expand fossil fuel production. – a prescription for misery, hardship and civil unrest for our children and their children.
    Is two or three years more economic ‘sunshine’ worth an eternity of want and suffering for our offspring?

    Are they so ideologically and morally corrupt that they can’t see the precipice ahead, or just plain stupid ??
    Aren’t their any sane “liberals” left that can save us?

  10. John Fraser


    In my younger days there were many jokes about the catholic orders.

    Today the joke about Abbott is that he is a Roads Scholar.

    In every joke there is some truth.

    Sadly the truth about the religious (and others) orders is curently being played out in the Royal Commission.

  11. PeterF

    I often wonder what you would have to do to be asked to leave a seminary?

  12. John Fraser



    I wonder what you wouldn't do … to be asked to leave a seminary.

  13. PeterF

    John, I believe my comment to be relevant to the subject of the main topic, not just a throwaway line.

  14. John Fraser



    Throw it back.

    I wasn't trying to be funny.

    Just enquiring.

    Its the way to learn.

  15. Christel Nathan

    John just Love your Article ,I so agree thank you for putting in to words how I see the whole Abbott Saga

  16. jasonblog

    Excellent article, and I agree wholeheartedly with it, but I do question what is achieved by questioning, mocking, and belittling Abbott’s “intelligence”.

    Tony Abbott is not unintelligent. He is a man of craft and guile. Yes, it is disturbing that he appears to be in perpetual campaign mode and that he takes his myopic approach to domestic politics onto the world stage. He is an embarrassment. However, I’m beginning to think it is intentional.

    Is the mediocrity part of a broader scheme of manipulation? Criticism of Abbott’s lame performance at Davos is easily brushed aside by Abbott propagandists as being typical of “the left” and the snide contempt of the “elites” who don’t understand “common-sense”.

    Not only is Abbott continually playing to a particular domestic audience, I have a feeling he is creating one. Andrew Bolt rightly pointed out that Abbott was considered unelectable by the “elites” _ – and “they” were wrong.

    For those curious folk Mr Bolt even cobbled together an article about it

    So, while I agree that Abbott behaves like a simpleton and this is a dangerously mediocre government, my gut feeling is that that criticism is welcomed by those who are astutely manipulating those considerable parts of Australian society who are feeling marginalised. I suspect that there are a lot of Australians who want some sort of certainty and who are not literate in economics or fully cognisant of history and are utterly baffled by an incomprehensible science. They are not necessarily bad people but I suspect that they are extremely fearful and the LNP are successfully exploiting those fears.

    The challenge for Bill Shorten and the ALP is to craft a credible alternative that does not stoop to fear-mongering but is accessible to the lay-person. If they simply attack Abbott’s intelligence, or perceived lack of, then they will fail again. Tony Abbott proves time and time again that he should not be underestimated. Hopefully more people can become aware of articles like this John Kelly & other stuff available on AIMN and Independent Australia and come to see through the deceit.

  17. rossleighbrisbane

    Occasionally, I have written the odd satiric speech from Tony Abbott which some people have believed was real. Clearly someone else did the same thing and somehow it fell into his hands at Davos.

  18. Fed up

    John, the problem is not the RC church when it comes to Abbott at this time. Abbott ignored the word of his Pope. Yes, Pope Francis puts growing inequity across the globe as the biggest issue to be dealt with.

    Abbott came back, with the comment, that it is the free market that has lifted many out of poverty. Do not know where his evidence is for that, but many are also falling into poverty, especially in such p[laces as the USA. Over fifty percent of the population now.

    I suspect in China and such places, more than a free market is to be given the credit.

    One needs to keep in mind, capitalism, a couple of hundred years ago, Capitalism found the Catholic church cut across their beliefs, Yes, stood in their way.

    They overcome this, by creating their own churches, such as Calvanism, then many others,

    They are doing the same up to this time. Yes, we now have churches that preach that amassing great wealth is a sainltly thing. Protestant Churches that preach all was well in the owrld, with the rich man in his castle, and all others in the gatehouse, or serving them on their land. Yes, religion that preached that everyone hasd a place to fill. A place it seems ordained by God.

    Gone were the days, of Jesus dispersing the money men from his temples. Gone were the days, that claim blessed are the meek.

    Yes, we have seen the RC church side with capitalism. Now we seem to have a Pope who is reversing that trend.

    One can hope.

    A lousy summing up, I know. There is much written over the centuries on this topic.

    Personally, I believe that money and government are here to serve all. To allot the wealth we are given, in an inequitable manner among all.

    I suspect about is at the simpleton he makes out. He has an agenda that he is methodical… Putting in place. He is just not telling us what it is.

    No, Abbott is even ignoring his church.

  19. Fed up

    Russ, I suspect he wrote that speech himself. Claimed proudly in the past, he writes his own speeches.

    We can only come to the conclusion, this man believes his own spin.

  20. Fed up

    Russ, as he stays hidden in the bunker, does appear to have much time to fill in. Maybe he uses it, writing speeches.
    Would not have been hard. It was only a repeat of all the slogans he has been singing for over four years. Nothing new there at all.

  21. Fed up

    Just had a thought. Why do the nuns, well in the past, produce women who are outspoken and capable of independent thinking, while brothers produce men that appear brainwashed and incapable of independent thought?

  22. Fed up

    I suspect he was asked to leave for a simple reason. He refuse to listen, SAME AS HE DOES NOW.

  23. Fed up

    His statement in one of the stories about his time in the seminary, when he said that he believe those sick in bed were reneging and well enough to attend the table to eat. I think, he refused to carry out his given duty of taking meals to their beds.

    Seem to fit in well with his attitude to those on benefits, and in low paying jobs. All bludgers.

  24. johnlord2013

    Bullshiting is bad enough but when someone believes their own that is intellectual dishonesty.

  25. Leon Davis

    Today the thought that we could only describe our present Australia as Paradise Lost led me to look for my copy of Milton’s epic poem. Somehow it has gone missing and long ago spring cleans are suspect. Never mind good old Wikipedia (M.P. Hunt’s friendly reference source) allowed a reminder of its powerful story and surprisingly a discovery that a libretto was prepared by Milton admirer, the poet Dryden. The libretto was neither matched to music or made it to the stage but Dryden’s Lucifer opens with lines that relate with where we now are. I quote;
    Is this the seat our conqueror has given?
    And this the climate we must change for heaven?
    These regions and this realm my wars have got;
    This mournful empire is the loser’s lot;
    In liquid burnings, or on dry, to dwell,
    Is all the sad variety of hell.

    Do we really deserve a PM like that we now have.

  26. PeterF

    @John Fraser: Thanks John, I liked your comment, but wanted to emphasise that there is more to the story than might appear at first. I note that you also commented on Abbott’s ‘reasons’ for leaving the Seminary on ‘no fibs’ in 2013. Obviously you too have doubts about the circumstances.

  27. lawrencewinder

    Good article and I agree with *Jasonblog*, too… there is method in their devious madness.
    But his Davos homily would have convinced the Europeans the The Great South land is indeed a placeof very strange fauna.

  28. John Fraser



    When it comes to Abbott and the catholic church I have many doubts and queries.

    A lot has been reported somewhat.

    But … for instance …. who paid for Abbott's legal representation in his earlier days in Court.

  29. Fed up

    Maybe daddy’s friends delivered. Seem to have come across the name Lawler. Have no idea in there was one of a similar name. Seems the dad were great friends. Kids grew up together. Most in law and policing now. There must be others. Not so sure that daddy was wealthy enough to keep up with the Abbott’s legal needs at the time.

  30. Fed up

    Maybe someone has the names of all the legal beagles, including barristers, that Abbott used.

  31. Fed up

    Noticed 7.30 has a woman on telling us, the money spent on education does not count. Yes, teachers are a barrier.

    Seems she comes from Washington, USA. Parents here do not help their kids, like they do in the USA. Sorry, she4 has not visited Will have to follow up on ABC 2 to learn more.

  32. Stephen Putnam

    Abbott made a fool of himself and shamed the country by bringing up domestic political issues on the world stage. He should listen to what his fellow Coalition State Premiers are saying namely that he should wake up to the fact that he’s no longer the leader of the Opposition, he’s the PM.

  33. PeterF

    @ Fed up: You took a totally different story from the 7.30 report from what I learned. We could not have been watching the same program.

  34. Fed up

    Have to admit, Only caught the end of it. Not something I usually do, That is why I said one would need to go to the site to find out what it was about. Did not agree with much of the little I did hear. Sorry.

    Will be surprise if what I find there would support Better Schools or Gonski in anyway. Would love to be proved wrong.

    One gets so much negative information that it leads one to jump tp conclusions. That is wrong on my part.
    Will catch up later.

  35. PeterF

    @ Fed up: Well said, and the sort of response I have come to expect from you.

    What I heard was that the speaker said that money invested in addressing inequality in education was well spent.

    I also heard her say that American families supported their children at school, but not in ways that would help their learning. She said that parents should spend time reading, talking, counting etc with their children, and in this way helping them to develop critical/analytical thinking as an important step towards their education. She also spoke of the fact that in Finland, teaching is a select career, well paid, though not necessarily the highest paid. Teaching has been elevated to one which is held in high regard. There must be a lot more to hear by going online to the extended interview, which I hope to do tomorrow.

  36. Fed up

    My daughter spends hours with her children, from day one going through the work they do each day. This is required by the school. Yes, reading to the kids is a big deal. Even spending time at their school, listening to kids read. There is communication every day. Not too sure what more a parent could do. Yes, and it is a state school.
    Parents are encouraged to be a part of their schooling. Does to fit with what the perception if, so soon. Too bad.
    Same goes for the education of other grand kids.
    No, I am not in the habit of giving off the cuff remarks. I indicated that I as not heard much of the show, and one would need to check if they were interested.
    I heard the teachers gets slammed. I heard parents are not involved., I heard that the spending of extra money does not help. I heard how great their system is.
    Now, do I have that wrong.
    What I did not hear, was who she was, and why she was here.

    I also quickly admitted I should have checked before writing. I more or less said that in the comment.

    I suspect what I have written, is not far from the truth.

    Now, maybe you can tell me what you heard. Show me where I have it so wrong. Here is your chance to really show me up.

  37. Trevor Vivian

    Abbott as PM is proving to be the disaster which I presumed it would become.
    Anybody who thinks that criticising Abbott will effect a change in Abbott need to engage in a time and motion study on their thought process.
    Abbott as PM is just the same deceiver as Abbott as student politics aggressor and Howard govt behind the scenes destroyer.
    Howard destroyed the Liberal Party and all Liberal thinkers were systematically removed over a 15 yr period before Howard became the cuddly uncle john persona that fooled the electorate until he lost his seat and top dog job to Kevvie.
    Abbott the destroyer as opposition leader morphs carefully into Abbott as PM with a mask of the grinning idiot when in facthe is a crafty,cunning, ruthless bully who now has a plethora of willing acolytes (witness Scott the minister for Menace and Pyne the minister for maths) to give the public a perception that Abbott is (a) Adult (b) in charge (c) competent and (d) a dynamic clear thinking leader on your team.
    This is a time in business and politics where only the truly inept get rewarded and advance to leadership.
    Abbott the cunning,crafty,ruthless bully uses his intellect to beat off allcomers no matter their political allegiances or public position.
    The public face and the private face of Abbott.
    Confuse them at your own peril because a polititions effective life hasno moral compass just in house focus groups.

  38. oldfart

    With any luck, Tony will be “liberated” before the 16 election and if this really is the “lucky” country, the rest of his crew will be “liberated” at the 16 election

  39. Fed up

    Will someone remind Pyne, all that he has not put back, was paid for by the taxpayer. In fact contains all, he says he is seeking to know. Just wish he would read all, then comment,

    ….”Direct publication facilitates public access,” he said. “Technically if a document has been provided under the Act it is already available. Disclosure logs put that into practice.”
    But the department has returned to the web much less than was there before. It has published only the 286-page final report requested by Fairfax. The previously-published commissioned studies and submissions remain hidden.
    And the department has taken steps to distance itself from the report. It has included a disclaimer noting that it was commissioned by the previous government and provided posted “for historical purposes only”…….

    Read more:

  40. Fed up

    Watch that show late last night. Still stick with my original reaction. Did not hear the lady say a

    All she and others raised can be found in the Gonski report and the numerous papers, documents and research that accompany it.

  41. patsy

    can anyone put some light on the brother Egbert that abbott refers to….is he the brother he defended for being naughty with an altar boy and had his charges dropped and then transferred ?????????

  42. Glenn

    Great article John. but you can’t say Abbott and co. ‘always default to cutting spending in the areas of social welfare’. They have also done a pretty big number on the environment and foreign aid and not for profit NGOs. Seems like everything good that has been achieved in the last twenty years is being systematically taken apart by this mad monk. When will it end?

  43. John Kelly

    Patsy, it wasn’t Abbott that made reference to Brother Egbert. That was me, and no, I don’t believe the Brother Egbert I knew was ever associated with anything of that nature.

  44. Buff McMenis

    And the shame-faced embarrassment of being an Australian who had this dumbcluck as her Prime Minister, no thanks to her, was astounding! 🙁

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