When Holden bailed out on Thursday Abbott said it was ‘a shattering blow’ that ‘should not be politicised’. It was, however, the result of a political act the day before, when Joe challenged Holden to ‘piss in the pot, or get off’, or words to that effect, on the floor of Parliament, a political venue.
When an issue might harm the Liberals, Murdoch says it must not be politicised. When it might harm Labor — like, say, Rudd not speaking to a makeup girl in the most crucial hour of his life — of course it is politically relevant, and a national scandal. He said nothing to a makeup girl, he did not insult her, he just said nothing: vote him out.
The truth is, everything is political, because, in a democracy, everything you do or say affects the vote. Abbott’s bare hairy chest is political. His sister’s undaunted love of a woman is political. Gillard’s poor choice of past lovers is political. Clinton’s twelve blow-jobs were political, once revealed; and they ended, probably, life on this planet, by electing Bush the denier not Gore the climate expert.
You cannot say ‘politicise’ or ‘playing politics’ is wrong, in any context. It is what politicians are paid to do. Bronwyn Bishop’s refusal to lower the flag for Mandela (if it was she that forbade it), Nelson Mandela, a man she previously wanted hanged, is political. Of course it is political. Abbott’s refusal to apologise for peeking at Bambang’s wife was political. Of course it was political.
We now hear people say we must not ‘politicise’ the massacre of Sandy Hook although it was politics that caused it, nor the shooting of Gabby Giffords though it was politics that caused it, and we must not ‘politicise’ the drownings off Christmas Island in plain sight of shocked witnesses although it was politics that sent them on that voyage into ocean peril and needless doom.
So the word ‘politicise’ is useless. It means ‘to speak of things that happen in life’. Of course we can speak of these things. We have the freedom to do so, the freedom of speech. Our elected members have a duty to do so, it is what we pay them for.
Let us have done with this verb. It is null and void.
Or perhaps you disagree.