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Tony Abbott’s mugging produces a one-sided affair

If I were to be asked which side of politics indulged in the practice of ‘playing the man, not the ball’, I’d reply that it’s a one-sided contest. The ‘right’ wins in a canter. By the ‘right’ I refer to not just the members of the Coalition but their supporters and the right-wing media.

I’m assured by many from the right that the left has its fair share of trolls, muggers and attack dogs, but I’m sorry, I can’t find them anywhere. At least not the places I frequent; the media – old and new.

The old media sets a bad example. Or I should say a good example of ‘playing the man (or woman)’. Some recent examples – of many available – come to mind.

  • After Senator Conroy announced proposed changes to media laws, who did we see attacked? The laws or Senator Conroy? Conroy, of course, and it got personal when he was likened to one of history’s greatest mass murderers, Joseph Stalin. We saw little dissection or even debate on the policy or its implications. The best the media and the Opposition could do was attack Senator Conroy the most vile they could legally do.
  • When refugees drowned off Christmas Island in 2010 who did we see attacked? Not the people smugglers, but Julia Gillard who according to one fanatical right-winged mouthpiece had blood on her hands. The attack was rabid.
  • When four people tragically died providing home insulation under the Rudd Government’s Home insulation Program, who did the media blame? The Minister, Peter Garrett of course. Were they interested to seek answers of why or how these people died, or how future deaths could be prevented? No, they weren’t. They preferred to play the man.

It contrasts to how the left react. Take recently, when the Opposition released their NBN policy – the details I needn’t go into – it was not well-received. But who or what was attacked? The policy was. Nobody played the man; they played the ball. Sure, people made fun of it because after all, it was a dud. But can we really expect those of the right to play the ball when the man who oversees the demise of political integrity in this country, Tony Abbott, has turned ‘playing the man’ into an art form?

I used to think that John Howard was a mean-spirited, nasty piece of work, but in comparison to Tony Abbott he appears as kind, caring and compassionate as Mother Teresa.

Tony Abbott is far, far more mean-spirited. He demonstrates this in the way he ignores human misery and the way he belittles those who are suffering from it. He is, in a nutshell, nasty to the core.

Stories surface that he’s been inherently nasty for as long as people have known him, but it wasn’t until 2005 that I first took notice of his extreme level of nastiness and lack of compassion for human misery when it was hoisted onto the national stage. It came only hours after the NSW Leader of the Opposition, John Brogden, had attempted suicide. The Age reported at the time that:

The day after Mr Brogden was found unconscious in his electorate office with self-inflicted wounds, Mr Abbott publicly joked at two separate Liberal Party functions about the disgraced leader’s career-wrecking behaviour . . . Mr Abbott was asked at a fund-raising lunch about a particular health reform proposal and reportedly answered: “If we did that, we would be as dead as the former Liberal leader’s political prospects.”

Nasty. Even to a mate.

He also claimed that Bernie Banton was a mate. Not that he acted like one.

When Tony Abbott was the Minister for Health, the dying asbestos disease sufferer Bernie Banton obtained a petition containing 17,000 signatures of those who supported the listing of the mesothelioma drug Alimta on the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme. This petition was to be presented in person to Tony Abbott. If it wasn’t disrespectful enough to snub the petition, then his verbal response certainly was.

Yesterday, Mr Abbott was quick to dismiss the petition. “It was a stunt,” Mr Abbott said on the Nine Network.

“I know Bernie is very sick, but just because a person is sick doesn’t necessarily mean that he is pure of heart in all things.”

He loves making fun of dying people. Does he expect we’ll all laugh along with him?

He even has a go at deceased people. Margaret Whitlam wasn’t even in the grave before Tony Abbott used her death to score cheap political points.

The death of Margaret Whitlam caused such an outpouring of saddened fondness that comments by the Opposition Leader, Tony Abbott, linking her passing with the sins of the Whitlam government appear to have struck an extremely wrong note.

He said she was a ”woman of style and substance” and ”a marvellous consort to a very significant Labor leader and an epochal Australian prime minister”.

”There was a lot wrong with the Whitlam government but nevertheless, it was a very significant episode in our history and Margaret Whitlam was a very significant element in the political success of Gough Whitlam,” Mr Abbott said.

Nasty. As always. Just another person to mug.

And let’s not forget the role he played in the jailing of Pauline Hanson. After One Nation shocked the Coalition by winning 11 seats in Queensland in June 1998, Abbott was determined to dig up every piece of dirt he could on Hanson. In his own words, on her demise he boasts this was:

“All my doing, for better or for worse. It has got Tony Abbott’s fingerprints on it and no-one else’s.”

His nastiness is contagious to the Liberal Party and many of its members, supporters and the adoring media have been affected under his leadership. It is a point that I and many others have expressed, but I do like what Dave Horton has to say in summary:

In effect all shock jocks and populist politicians are painting targets on people who do not share their views. In Australia the people who said the Prime Minister was a “witch” or a “cheap prostitute whoring herself” who should be “drowned in a sack” or “kicked to death” were inviting violence in a way that should not be permitted in a civilised society whether applied to the prime minister or the unfortunate woman who was the partner of Car Park Man.

Bullying, in home, school, workplace is rightly taken very seriously these days. And it is clearly recognised that verbal bullying can cause as much distress and psychological damage as physical actions.

Yet we facilitate, protect, applaud, the bullying and incitement to bullying that takes place every day in out media. Target after target of helpless and/or vulnerable groups (Aborigines, gays, single mothers, unemployed, refugees, public housing tenants, environmentalists, unions) are chosen day after day by bully boy and bully girl shock jocks and politicians. And day after day there are attempts by the same people to denigrate, delegitimise, degrade, political and philosophical opponents. Day after day words are twisted, lies told, rage consequently incited.

And oh how that nastiness has filtered down into our media, old and new. If you need any further evidence of how nasty the right are then feast your eyes upon these two disgusting videos, courtesy of the rabid, vile right-wing shock jocks at 2GB:



Do you see or hear that type of media trash from the left?

Last night I had the displeasure of witnessing such pathetic behaviour on social media.

We are often asked here why we only preach to the converted. I can assure people that we don’t. All of our articles are posted on Facebook sites, for example, where left/right followers have the opportunity to debate the articles. John Lord did this last night, and he was immediately subject to a barrage of personal attacks bordering on defamatory. I checked the profiles of those playing the man, and surprise surprise, they boasted on their Facebook pages as being Tony Abbott or LNP supporters. Not one of them showed any commitment to discussing the topic at hand, unlike the left supporters on the site.

It was pure filth. He was verbally mugged.

It’s their style. Play the man, not the ball. And when you catch him, make sure he gets a good mugging.

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  1. Möbius Ecko

    Stand by for a lot of projection, it’s the other thing they do when not mugging the man or caning a website for being left wing whilst not caning right wing sites for being biased to the right.

    Did I tell you that hypocrisy is the other thing they do.

  2. Greenradagast

    He is basically a thug/

  3. Jennifer Fallon

    Michael I agree whole-heartedly. I tried visiting the Liberal Party facebook page. If you have the temerity to suggest that our economy is actually going ok, or that FttN broadband is not cost effective, or that we have a humanitarian obligation towards asylum seekers, or that climate change is real, you are immediately subjected to an onslaught of personal abuse. The pack mentality is frightening. One woman looked at my facebook page and, from information she found, did searches on me and then threatened to come to my place of work….all because I didn’t feel our debt was unmanageable???

    This has highlighted for me the need for media scrutiny and accountability because, in a country where voting is compulsory, it is crucial that the electorate is given unbiased information about alternate policies so they can make an informed choice. It appears that debate about relative merits has given way to a schoolyard bully mentality where rational discussion is irrelevant but belittling people is considered “clever”.

  4. Rob

    This time the election is less about Left and Right politics but a choice between basic decency and very nasty lunatics.

  5. Concera Vota

    Agree whole-heartedly Michael. I’ve often commented that if T Abbott or Pyne were the PM’s husband, everyone would call their behaviour mental abuse. Sadly, what is not acceptable in the home, is condoned in our national parliament and termed the ‘cut and thrust’ of politics.

    To be honest, I think the PM has a kind of resilience I have never seen – to be able to withstand the constant bullying for 3 years now staggers me (and I believe Oakeshott and Windsor have received similar vitriol, but not in the parliament as the PM has).

    I sincerely hope this behaviour will not be rewarded with government this year. If it does, it cements such behaviour as the norm and it also cements partisanship in the media because they have been treated to an ongoing spectacle of confected chaos and hysterical headlines which is what they consider their bread and butter.

  6. Ricky (Tory Torcher)

    Great Point Migs….

    Oh how can you dare to criticise Abbott?..he is bullet proof. Seems the only counter argument projected back is but she is a bitch? This type of disgraceful vitriol is now very much mainstream and conditioned to be normal. I am convinced that Jones has lost it, no condemnation whatsoever from Abbot over his recent remarks

  7. andyrob65

    Very good piece Michael. Apologies for departing early on Friday night. I do believe that what I was saying to our company at that time, was at least prepared to listen even though she admitted to being a Liberal voter. She also stated that she wanted to continue after getting a drink but unfortunately I needed to leave. I hope you had the opportunity to continue.

    I was a bit surprised at her approach but small steps at least in the right direction.

    The MSM absolutely need to be held to account for their inadequate reporting and fact finding abilities at the moment, although we know who is in bed with who.

  8. Fed up

    Wonder if Abbott ever believed in Qheensberry rules. I feel he believes the only way to win is by cheating and destroying ones opposition.

  9. andyrob65

    oh that so has a Nazi twang to it FU. I should stop thinking like that I suppose. They aren’t part of our world now are they. 😉

  10. Jennifer Fallon

    By the skillful and sustained use of propaganda, one can make a people see even heaven as hell or an extremely wretched life as paradise.

    Adolf Hitler

  11. Liv

    You do realise that JoeHockey_MP is a parody account? The real Joe doesn’t have the _MP bit.

  12. Ken Brown

    Remember the recent assertion by Abbott that the Labor Party was bullying News Limited? If Abbott wasn’t such a Richard Cranium you’d think he was a comedian

  13. Eleana Winter-Irving

    Birds of a feather flock together. Unfortunately Australia is full of morons, ignorant idiots and the illiterate. They all have to vote. An ignorant person does not know who the best person to vote for is. Of course they will make a poor or even worse, a bad choice.

  14. andyrob65

    oh shit, thanks Liv, no I didn’t. New to Twitter. Me must learn to check validity in future. hahahahaha

  15. andyrob65

    Even horses don’t like Abbott


  16. Truth Seeker

    Ricky mate, hope the recovery is going well 😀

    Been thinking of you

    Cheers 😀

  17. Truth Seeker

    Migs, so true 🙁

    Abbott has brought nastiness to another level, and one of my commenters pointed out on my latest poem post, “Tony Abbott’s Character”, that the one small issue that she had was with the title “Cos he doesn’t have a character”.

    Now that is the intimation within the body of the poem, and I agreed with her assessment to the point where I almost changed the title to add (Or lack thereof), but I decided to leave it, cos it was already up 😀

    Anyway mate, keep up the great work 😎

    Cheers 😀

    Tony Abbott’s Character.

  18. Bob Evans

    A friend recently told me, Jones wasn’t fit to eat with pigs. But I defended him, I said he was.

  19. patsy

    the old quote “the tree of wisdom sometimes bears bitter fruit ” this certainly is abbott he must be a very very unhappy person…i was going to say human being…but this does not apply to him….i don’t think he knows human

  20. patsy

    Hadley and Jones……say no more been around TOO long they can only see one point of view and thats their own …….they are TOO old and cannot see what the future of our wonderful country has……..they are all back in the 50’s…….at least gillard is trying to put us ahead she has vision….they are totally blind to progress

  21. dutkiewiczarchive

    What about the disgraceful comment made when Julia Gilard’s father died, that he died “of shame”?.

  22. Roswell

    Möbius, it never ceases to astound me the level of attack that left wing sites are subjected to for being, of all things, left wing. It’s as though being one sided is exclusive to the right only. Yes, the hypocrisy is amazing. Do these critics dare to criticise those right wing sites? No, they don’t.

  23. Terence

    After Leigh Sales’ surprisingly mild interview (love-in perhaps ?) with TA the other night I’m wondering whether the word has gone out in the ABC to go easy on the opposition as ‘they may be the paymasters in around four months’.
    With all the gaping holes and unknowns in the coalition’s policies I would have expected the ABC, when they finally got access to TA, to be far more incisive and probing but it was not to be.
    Even Barrie Cassidy with the oppositions spokesperson on border security on Insiders yesterday would not push him on how they would ‘stop the boats’ after the spokesperson mouthed the normal platitudes about ‘reintroducing the suite of Howard era policies which worked’ and ‘turning back and towing back boats when safe to do so’ and ‘working closely to rebuild the relationship with Indonesia’.These matters are crying out for clarification AND have nothing to do with waiting for the budget.

  24. Ronald Ostrowski

    I remember when Abbott went to Afghanistan in order to trump the earlier visit of the PM, whom he calls the worst PM in history, and who he accuses of failing every character test concievable to mankind.

    When in the war zone our testosterone laden PM in waiting wanted to be embedded with our frontline soldiers. They politely informed him that this would not only endanger him, but cause unnecessary risk to those on the mission who would have the added responsibility of protecting him. Then when commenting on an Australian casuality he said, “Shit happens’. Of course, the rare fourth estate exposure of this statement via Channel Seven’s Mark Riley interview had him stunned for almost a full minute in a bizaare display of anger management that rendered him nodding away like one of those figurine puppy dogs some people adorn the interiors of their cars with.

    The level of white hatred directed at Mark Riley for the audacity of so trapping their beloved Tony was enough to make one’s hair stand on end. It seems that in the free world these days that there are a great many people who would welcome the likes of Hitler without question and accord to him 110% loyality.

  25. eleanawi

    I agree with Ronald Ostrowski on everything he has written. The Shock Jocks, those with the placards saying Bitch and Witch would all vote for a Hitler like man. Change his name and appearance, but leave the rhetoric and they would all love him. They would see him as strong and a doer. However I have never known anyone stronger than Julia Gillard. People, get used to the gender changes taking place. It is time women had a turn at running things. Give them the chance they deserve, as most of what is wrong in the world today has occurred by men’s judgement and actions. Tony Abbott on the other hand, I see as weak and abusive where abuse is unjust and unfair and unwarranted.

  26. Roswell

    I too recall the uproar at Riley’s tame ambush of Abbott. The gallery crucified him.

  27. hannahquinn

    I keep asking myself, are we on the Middle to Left side of the political divide kidding ourselves that it’s only those on the the Right side who are bullying, playing the man/woman/minority rather than the policy/issue? Are we perhaps just blind to the Left side’s bad behaviour through partisan bias. Undoubtedly, there is bad behaviour on the Left. I see it in my Twitter feed daily. I’ve lost some followers for pointing out their bullying behaviour, and I’ve chosen not to follow those I see are more rapidly angry in their comments/attitudes especially when they are aimed at a messenger passing on something said, i.e. in a press conference. That’s okay. I’m not interested in the name calling bullying aspects of life to join in. I get heated sometimes, too. I don’t mind humorous satire. I think it’s healthy. And it’s funny. Satire, however, is not in the same league as the couple of examples given in this linked article. Pages and pages unfortunately exist of the many examples those on the Right of politics have used to attack the player not the play and never more so than to the Prime Minister, Julia Gillard. The real abuse of the PM is not the comments on her hair, her voice, her clothes: they are bad enough, usually sexist, and say more about the person than the target, as all bullying does. No, the really worrying bullying, and sexism, are the repeated words and calls to violence by so-called ‘leaders, seniors, states’men’ of political society; much of it aided and abetted by the mainstream media and senior ‘reporters’ who are doing very little reporting and much opinion-casting.
    We have entered an extremely ugly, and I dare say dangerous, period of politics and it is really up to all of us, all of society, to bring it to an end. We the people elect our representatives. We the people must ensure they represent us, not on a base level, but on a broad encompassing level. We, after all, are all of society. Our elected representatives need to remember they represent all society, not themselves or their own vested interests unless that marries with society’s vested interest.
    We the people need to remember that first and foremost to ensure our representatives do and are thus accountable for it.
    Please read this article by Michael Taylor. It is spot on the state of play that is Australian political society currently.

  28. eleanawi

    If the Left is really ‘right’ and the Right is really ‘wrong’, why wouldn’t one be one sided?

  29. hannahquinn

    Abbott is a bully. He has the bullies ‘gang’ around him and they perform their bullying duties well. As we all know, a bullying environment invites, unleashes, legitimises more bullying in general. That is what has happened and is happening still. No matter how much Abbott rehearses being ‘prime ministerial’ in the following four and a half months, it does not alter the fact of his life long history of bullying. He accuses the Government of low politics. It is yet another instance of him, and the gang that is the Opposition, claiming the other side is doing what they themselves are doing. I fear people will believe him, but I hold out the hope that society is, overall, better than that and will not choose to be ‘led’ by such an bully, i.e. undeserving man. The difficulty lies in people voting for their side, as we do not literally elect the leader despite the claims otherwise when Rudd was removed. I would hope that, despite partisan following of a ‘side’ in politics, when it comes to having Abbott as Prime Minister, with the ‘authority’ he so deeply desires and claims to now have as Leader of the Opposition, society will choose the wiser course rather than the team-political choice.

  30. Roswell

    What amuses me the most is the number of people on other blogs who spend their days saying what the left should be talking about. I guess it’s up to the authors here or the readers.

  31. Fed up

    “What about the disgraceful comment made when Julia Gilard’s father died, that he died “of shame”?.”

    Wonder what Abbott’s father thought of him. Wonder if shame was involved.

  32. patriciawa

    Thank you, Michael, for a great piece of writing. Not surprisingly you, Ad Astra at The Political Sword and Min at Cafe Whispers, my favorite sites, are on the same wavelength, but today there is a particular urgency echoed by the comments of nearly all your blog followers.

    As hannaquinn says above We have entered an extremely ugly, and I dare say dangerous, period of politics and it is really up to all of us, all of society, to bring it to an end. We the people elect our representatives. We the people must ensure they represent us, not on a base level, but on a broad encompassing level. We, after all, are all of society. Our elected representatives need to remember they represent all society, not themselves or their own vested interests unless that marries with society’s vested interest………We the people need to remember that first and foremost to ensure our representatives do and are thus accountable for it.

  33. kgb16

    Too bad the horse in the “The Project” video is not a KILLER horse! If it had of killed Abbott it would have done Australia a great service. The downside would be that we would be still be stuck with all the other low life in the LNP.

  34. Eleana Winter-Irving

    What I would sooner see hypothetically, would be to see Tony Abbott lose the next election and with Julia Gillard to win by a landslided would not only make my day, but would make my year.

    Humiliation would be a good lesson for LOTO. Make him a better man that he is right now.

  35. Crash Skeptic

    So I start reading about how evil right-wingers only “play the man” and virtuous left-wingers are only “playing the ball”.

    And by the end of the page, I’ve read voluminous tomes about how Abbott is “nasty to the core”, ” has no compasion”, is a “bully”, etc, etc… oh, and of course multiple comparisons to Hitler!

    Irony is alive and well, it seems.

    Anyway, most of it is the usual predictable stuff, but one comment tweaked my interest:

    Ronald Ostrowski wrote:

    Then when commenting on an Australian casuality he said, “Shit happens’. Of course, the rare fourth estate exposure of this statement via Channel Seven’s Mark Riley interview had him stunned for almost a full minute in a bizaare display of anger management that rendered him nodding away like one of those figurine puppy dogs some people adorn the interiors of their cars with.

    Exposure? Oh, come on, that was the most ludicrous beat-up. Even the late soldier’s family defended Abbott!

    When not even the family is convinced by such a beat-up, you’re really up the creek without a paddle.

  36. jane

    Eleana, I doubt that it would make him a better man than he is right now, although that would be the easiest task ever, but the spectacle of Liealot, the Liars Party and their barrackers hurling themselves off bridges and other tall structures would be very entertaining.

    Watching the spittle flecked impotent rage of the likes of Anal and his scaly mates as their fat heads exploded would also be very gratifying.

  37. Fed up

    Crash, you are so right. Abbot is sp predictable. Each day, he gets out with the same stunts and spin, the same three word slogans, along with the same lies. Seems to thrive on doom and gloom.

    It would be lovely if Abbott did something new, then we could have something new to talk about.

    Maybe he will take the PM ‘s challenge and list all those things he is going to cut.

    Then we could talk about policy in relation to Abbott.

  38. eleanawi

    The problem with ‘playing the man, not the ball’, is that the man is not capable of instigating anything positive for Australia. This is why Lefies are playing the man and not the ball. I do it all the time, every time I hear him say something absurd. I do not want policies thought out by him. I call him out on it and I will call him a fool if that is the way he behaves. The ball? What policies does he have other than slash and burn? It’s cut backs and cut outs. A dismal future for all even that 2% we all despise. They will be affected too. What they are being required to pay now is nothing compared to what they must pay later on if nothing is done now. This is where the Right is so ignorant.

  39. eleanawi

    It’s not often that I am cracking up at midnight, but had a good laugh at your comment. Do you see Julie Bishop hurling herself off any tall structure? Lol. The problem for me is that most of the LNP MP’s are quite bizarre. Yes, I see a python, once he has latched on, he will not let go and s l o w l y he squeezes the life out of you and our country. That’s a crap way to die.

  40. Pioj

    I can’t imagine any Prime Minister or potential Prime Minister or head of state anywhere in the world glaring silently at a journalist like some mentally unbalanced moron for a full minute. And what sort of misogynist and bullying maggot would punch the wall behind a woman head to intimidate her just because he lost a student election? A f…cking maggot, that’s who.

  41. Pioj

    To those who would point out the hypocrisy of playing the man in an essay criticizing playing the man, can I point out that you can’t attack someone’s odious character without attacking them; there is no point in mincing words or pretending to be reasonable with people like Abbott (and most of his team) _ people who don’t deserve respect.

    Would it be bullying or “playing the man” to call Hitler a murderous, psychopathic scum-bag? No. To denounce him without saying anything bad about him wouldn’t make any sense.

    Is it bullying or playing the man to call Abbott a lying, deceitful, sack of shit who has made “low politics” an art form but now accuses the other side of it? Someone who has based his entire political strategy _ helped along by the right-wing media _ on nobbling the government by using propaganda techniques perfected during the second world war? No.

    The way the opposition and the MSM has turned the population against Julia Gillard and Labor is very similar to the devastating efficiency demonstrated by the Nazis in their brainwashing of the German people to turn against the Jews. The constant repetition of negative messages devoid of intellectual content and the pandering to the most ignorant and prejudiced section of society with loaded terms such as “great big,new tax” and “climate change scam”, the latter pushed not so much by Abbott and the Libs, who’ve taken a dog-whistling approach to it (different message for different demographics), but by their barking dogs in the right-wing media, i.e., Bolt and Jones.

    Bullying the bully or playing the man who plays the man is perfectly justified. A low-life who punches a wall within an inch of a woman’s head to intimidate her never deserves to be prime minister _ ever.
    A leopard _ or in this case a mongrel dog _ doesn’t change his spots.

  42. andyrob65

    Crash, that bobbing head interview IS a disgraceful way to act. Do people really want that imbosile as the head statesman of this fine country. That is someone I can really look up to, NOT. The man had ample time to provide some form of answer back. How many times has the PM been put on the spot but still finds an answer.

    “I have given you the response you deserve.” FFS. oh there’s the light blue tie again Migs. 😉

  43. cuppa

    The other recent example was the Liberal “policy” guy’s threat to cut the throat of an eminent Australian. Cut throats, burn the witch, kick her to death, put targets on foreheads, Battlelines, demolish the NBN, drown her in a chaff bag.. . the violent fascist rhetoric never ends.

    Remember the recent assertion by Abbott that the Labor Party was bullying News Limited? If Abbott wasn’t such a Richard Cranium you’d think he was a comedian

    That’s an example (among dozens) of the projection Mobius Echo warned of early in the comments. Right-Wing Projection – the deliberate political tactic whereby the Right uses descriptions pertaining to themselves to describe others. There’s a relevant post on this at the TurnLeft2013 blog:

    Ignore what Tony Abbott says, listen to what he accuses others of, that’s the Real Tony

  44. cuppa

    Abbot is sp predictable. Each day, he gets out with the same stunts and spin, the same three word slogans, along with the same lies. Seems to thrive on doom and gloom.

    Then there’s his unofficial ‘uniform’ – the Hi-Viz vest and/or hard hat. It is another deliberate political tactic by Abbott, he, the blunt instrument of the Big End of Town, to get about most days in workingman’s costume.

    The image of him as a labourer-type is meant to instill in the mind of the viewers that he’s the workers’ friend, he is “one of them”. Nothing could be further from the truth, of course. To use their own words, the Liberals would cut the throat of workers’ pay and conditions at the first opportunity. Lest we forget WorkChoices – the culminating gambit of the rotten Liberals’ whole 12 years in office.

  45. Eleana Winter-Irving

    I have to agree with what you have said, however when I criticise Abbott, I use words that apply to people, such as moron and fool. Otherwise we are in danger of repercussions if that man ever became PM. You never know what laws he might bring in and make retrospective.

  46. Ronald Ostrowski

    Crash Skeptic, you say the family backed Abbott. That is not true. All we got from ‘the family’ in terms of reacting to a journalist’s question was that the soldier’s widow said she was not offended, but the soldier’s father went out of his way to say that he was very offended. So do not rewrite history Skeptic.

    I and a great many others were grossly offended. I do not know of any statesman or political leader who would say ‘shit happens’ when talking about those who die for their country. Abbott’s comment was both disgraceful and offensive. You don’t send people to war and then say ‘shit happens’ when they become casualties. He is not a hardened soldier in a war zone, he above all people has no right to say ‘shit happens’.

  47. andyrob65

    Not to mention the arrogance of the man…..

    “I have given you the response you deserve.”

    I have never heard such arrogance from anyone, let alone someone that believes they deserve to be the PM of a country.

    Obama…. how is your economy going.

    Abbott…… what! “I have given you the response you deserve.”

    Great national statesman this bloke I say.

  48. Michael Taylor

    Andy, I’d like to give Abbott the response HE deserves. 😉

  49. Fed up

    Michael, I believe we do here. Seems to be many new people that agree with us.

  50. Crash Skeptic

    Ronald Ostrowski wrote:
    Crash Skeptic, you say the family backed Abbott. That is not true. All we got from ‘the family’ in terms of reacting to a journalist’s question was that the soldier’s widow said she was not offended,

    Bollocks. The family backed Abbott to the hilt.

    When the story broke, I recall a female cousin(?) going on ABC Radio Sydney and praising Abbott’s behavior at the funeral. They said the family was impressed that he stayed even when there were no cameras and was genuine and authentic.

    And the widow, Becky, was unequivocal in her support:

    “Tony and I spoke at length and I fully accept that he was quoted out of context in the television news. As far as we, Jared’s family, are concerned there is no issue, the matter is over, and we will be making no further comment.” – Becky MacKinney, widow of Lance Corporal Jared MacKinney

    And it didn’t stop there.

    “In his widow Beckie’s words, the Channel 7 news on Tuesday night was like a scab being ripped off a wound that is in the early stages of healing.”

    “The behaviour of the reporter, pulling a statement out of context and twisting it, has disappointed her, she says.”

    “Beckie is sad today, not because of what Abbott said, but because the most traumatic event in her 26 years is again the subject of discussion, public opinion and criticism.”

    “S—t does happen, Beckie says. She knows this because it has happened to her.”

    “It is hard for a family that is tiptoeing through grief.”

    “Beckie said Abbott was a decent and good person, treating her and the reverence of the funeral with care and concern.”

    The one and only negative comment (that you naturally cling to) was from the father on the first day. But strangely (or not…) you neglect to mention he withdrew the criticism a day later. Did it slip your mind, Ronald?

    but the soldier’s father went out of his way to say that he was very offended.

    He went out of his way? Bollocks.

    The father had never even seen the Channel 7 report when he was approached by Fairfax journalists and asked for his opinion. After having it described to him, he critisized Abbott.

    Oh… but here’s the bit you conveniently forgot to mention – 24 hours later AFTER having seen the footage, he went on Channel 7 and WITHDREW his criticism and said he accepted that Abbott meant no offence.

    Media Watch: Media circus over a non-story (14/02/2011)

    How odd that you forgot to mention that…..

    So do not rewrite history Skeptic.

    Ronald, the only one re-writing history is you.

    Try and get your facts straight next time, champ.

  51. andyrob65

    It is irrelevant Crash. The fact of the matter is, he said it and then stood arrogantly and said nothing. That is disgraceful then said “I have given you the response you deserve.” bollocks

  52. cuppa

    Forget excuses. Someone that stands there for 72 seconds, in silent shaking fury at a question he’d had 2+ hours’ advance notice, of isn’t fit to be in parliament, let alone (god forbid) PM.

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