Lines For Bob Carr (2)

So you turn a boat back by pointing a gun at an Indonesian fisherman and you shoot him if he does not do what you say, and this is not an act of warlike provocation?

What else would you call it?

Leave a comment ?


  1. What Bob Carr meant to say, was with the continuing year long threat and the ensuing discussion of the annihilation of Iran, by the USA, Israel, the UK for instance, and the effectiveness of the West’s economic sanctions upon Iran, it is no wonder we are seeing an uptick in the number of Economic Migrants from Iran taking to the high seas as Asylum Seekers.

    We would prefer they stay in Iran and suffer the consequences of their actions and our policies, regardless as to whether they supported the policies of their present and past administrations, or their desire to live longer lives.

  2. I was pretty happy with Albanese on 7.30 tonight, he was firm with Sales,and did not allow her to interrupt his answers…

    Ms Mirabella was also no match to Plibersek on Q&A…

    Two good performances from Labor tonight.

    • Mirabella has caught Abbott’s shitty disease. With a bit of luck she’ll give it to Tony Jones, whose used by date is obviously well and truly up. We need a fresh idea with respect political debate. Q&A has become boring and predictable. It’s badly framed and just divides itself down the same divide, over and over and over and over…… yawn

    • Albanese’s first response showed Sales she had a problem. She never recovered. The result was a sensible interview for once. And nobody can unsettle Tania. She is extraordinary. Our next female PM.

      • Then why didn’t she tell Mirabella to shut her gob when Mirabella, stained by Abbott’s dirt file approach, suggested Kevin had turned down an offer to be on the program that night, by way of exonerating the pathetic little rabbit for being continually awol. Tania had already explained she had to leave a meeting, obviously chaired by Rudd, to be there. Nice lady, yeah, probably, but with the dirt file breed you have to be decisive, dextrous. Penny Wong is my choice but I certainly respect your opinion Barry.

        • I like both Penny and Tanya, there’s calmness about them both.They get on with their jobs, be the boss Julia or Kevin, and do it well..

          On the other side you have Michaelia, Mirabella, Kelly,Julie, and Bronnie…

        • Shutting Mirabella’s gob could be a mistake, Chris. The more she says, the worse it sounds.

    • I thought she keep cutting his answers before he had finished.

    • Helvi:- The Libs were let RIGHT OFF THE HOOK on Qand A last night.
      Gawd….every time Malaysia is brought up re refugees why are the Liberals given a HUGE free kick?
      Soapy Mirabella said Liberals would not agree because Malaysia was not a signatory.
      Why didn’t Tany fire straight back…”Well you sent asylum seekers to
      Nauru for 6 years when Nauru was not a signatory” But she would not ask this question…why?

      When Liberals keep saying Temporary protection Visas “stopped the boats” why wouldn’t Tanya say
      “Well if TPV’s stopped the boats why between 1999 and 2007 (TPV’s were introduced in 1999) did 12,000 more refugees arrive after 1999? If TPV’s worked as you say, not ONE MORE refugee would have arrived after 1999….but 12,000 did! More hypocrisy from the Liberals but not questioned by you?

      When Liberals keep saying Howard stopped the boats….well that was the 1990′s. What worked then will not work now. The times are different the conditions are very different. This has been pointed out by the Navy, Immigration and the Expert Committee. Why won’t the Liberals take advice from people who head these organizations who in some cases were Howard appointees?

      Also, why aren’t Liberals criticised for “cherrypicking” the Expert Committee’s recommendations.
      The Committee said their advice would not work if all of their recommendations were not implemented. The Liberals played politics with this from the day the Committee was formed and they had no intention of taking ANY advice proposed by the Committee.
      Why didn’t Tony Jones challenge Liberals on this? In fact why aren’t they EVER challenged?

      • It’s all about thinking on yer feet. Tanya is still getting used to the new paradigm. She was caught in the headlights a bit, but, given a few more days… Tony Jones is yesterdays man. I want to like him, but….

  3. Lines for Bob Carr (3):

    I’m aware, Tony, that this isn’t a particularly fashionable point of view to elucidate in the Australian political … scene, as it were, but the reality is, Tony, the reality is that these people, in Western Sydney, these traditional Labor voters we are trying to placate by lurching further and further into the type of mealy-mouthed platitudes of our opponents, these voters are, not to put it too indelicately, these voters are pinheads. We are wrong to listen to them. We are wrong to keep putting the question to them.

    What we should be of paramount importance to our Party, Tony, is provide the kind of moral leadership that defines great nations, that deepens the purpose of its citizens; making the moral argument for Australia taking a more compassionate approach to those less fortunate than us, when we have ample capacity, ample capacity to accommodate those fleeing persecution and war. That is opposed, Tony, to allowing the press and the particular world view of any one or other press proprietors to effectively create the moral framework for our societies to which we are then expected to cow toe.

    Tony Jones: So, to be clear - you are saying, effectively, that you are shaping policy to appease voters in working class Labor electorates. The ‘pinheads’, as you put it.

    Bob Carr: Well, exactly. We shouldn’t be in this role, in a role of political leadership, if we are just being blown hither and thither by the winds of populist, unconsidered, rancourous, cretinous opinion.

    Tony Jones: But to be clear - you are saying, are you not, that a large base of Labor’s support are, in effect, pinheads ?

    Bob Carr: Well, to be fair, Tony - the very same could, and in fact should be said of the Coalition’s support base.

    • Love it. Thank you Spleenblatt (whoever you are). Fine writing. I can just ‘hear’ both voices - beautifully captured - ha ha

    • Spleenblatt, as you yourself so often demonstrate, there are a lot of pinheads about.

      But the highest proportion is in the more affluent suburbs, where it is easier to survive without any sense.

      Accidentally, like a parrot sqwawking meaningful human words all unknowing, you say something wise -

      ” . . . provide the kind of moral leadership that defines great nations. . . . making the moral argument for Australia taking a more compassionate approach to those less fortunate than us” is indeed what would be the humane and the politic course.

      Politic, because the days have gone when any country, even the US, can treat the rest of the world like shit.

      Chaney and Rumsfeld tried that on a massive scale, Obama is continuing it, and so far it has stirred up bigger and bigger hornet’s nests.

      Australia’s current course is of course less insanely full speed ahead than America’s, but is heading in the same direction

      • Gosh, you’re an upbeat lady.

      • It is working-class people who suffer the downside of mass immigration.

        It seems to be largely the middle classes of third world countries who get to immigrate; the working classes stay and suffer. Hence the resonance of the “queue jumper” line.

        These points need to be directly addressed, moral bullying and insulting people as pinheads and so on is no substitute for that.

        The labour movement, in Australia too despite the racist influence, has a tradition of international solidarity which can be built on…but not by the Alternative Liberal party, there is the problem.

    • Very good script, Spleenblatt; though it is usually spelt “kowtow”. :smile:

      • Literally “knocking head on ground”. Chinese courtiers had permanent bruise marks on their foreheads.
        In OZ their equivalents have a brown nose and nasty taste on the tongue.

    • Brilliant. Well said.

    • This is brilliant. I was disgusted by Carr’s comments.

    • The asylum seeker issue really calls for both (all) parties to sit together and sort it out, to try and find a responsible solution.

      My solution is to let them all in, allow them into the community and let them work.

      Stop all immigration, no more taking skilled educated people from the countries where they are needed. Let’s educate our own…

      Any takers.

      • Helvi. In answer to your question. I have copied out, word for word my recent email to Lateline, the receipt of which is acknowledged by Lateline: 13 June 2013 4:!5:5! PM

        -Original Message-
        From: (Email supplied)
        Sent: Tuesday, 11 June 2013 2:23 PM
        To: Lateline
        Subject: Border Protection

        To Tony and the Team

        Please, we the audience of your show are sick and tired of being treated like idiots. On the subject of border protection, playing Australian politicians off against one another may be amusing for you guys, but, seriously, its not a game of TV ratings and the like, its a matter of life and death, it’s a world problem that has to have world (co-operation) solutions.

        No one politician or party in Australia has the answers, never will have. No one politician in the world has the answers, never will have.

        We need a global solution for a global problem. The reality is this. Man is a cruel bastard, driven by ego and greed and as this will never change, then refuges are forever. Forever.

        Obviously we need declared refugee zones, strategically placed around the world, agreed upon by enough countries to make it happen. These zones would be politically neutral, feed, clothe, and educate, and offer employment to those seeking protection for the time necessary. Logistically it is feasible, from a humanitarian point of view imperative. These people would have a right to travel. They would not be prisoners, although they would be care of their particular zone(s) for the period of their waiting.

        As humanity will never change, wars being permanent, ego being permanent, then, facing up to this reality, we need a permanent solution, or the best solution we can find.

        Towing boats back from countries we have invaded as part of the war/ego/greed principle is about as silly as it gets, is it not?

        I would like to see Lateline look to the future, address the big picture, get a forum going that is not based on the pathetic, directionless drivel, coming out of the hog-tied minds of party hacks. Your viewers minds are fine minds, treating them to a constant bombardment of low grade intelligence is surely not what Aunty is all about.

        In good faith,

        Chris Hunter

        • Good one, Chris.

        • Please refrain from using the term BORDER PROTECTION:-If I hear we “have lost control of our borders” again from Abbott and Morrison, I am going to vomit. The term “border control/border protection” has become just another political jingoism/singalong/slogan. There is even a bloody Australian TV series about Border Control-Howard had it engrained into our national psyche to the extent we have TV programmes about it! If we had “lost control of our borders” every beach would be under attack and thousands of people would be landing at a cove near you! How could a few refugees in leaky boats result in us “losing control of our borders”. It is a ridiculous statement used by mainly conservative governments to scare the beJesus out of us.

          • God you’re an idiot. That’s the whole reason I used the term, as a cynical reminder to the powers that be. And now you use it in capitals to illustrate your point to me. Next thing you’ll be telling me not to use the term REFUGEE. I have a very long history in fighting on this one. In a minute, just for you, I’ll type out a poem (at the bottom of this blog) I published on the 26th of April 2002 (Howard era), back when I was a more physically active activist, something I have been most of my adult life. I’m not an art grant kid, I never suck! I’m pure underground, like a wombat.

      • good point about us robbing the world of skilled people, Helvi. But the rich west has and does and will rob poor countries of all their resources. Slave-tended coffee or chocolate, anyone?

        But, like misogyny, the first step to solving a problem is recognising it, and, like misogyny, we have only begun to recognise our exploitation of the rest of the world (in our pollution of their shared atmosphere with carbon for a start)

    • well, I’ve read thru Carr and Jones’ exchange, and I repeat my comments on Spleenblatt’s post.

      It is not about the underclasses, it is about all Australians

      Clearly, Carr is doing a Ruddock. Labor has never chosen to do the right thing about refugees, now it is ratcheting up the rhetoric ahead of an election.

      The racism and cruise ship mentality of this nation will have to be overcome before any government can do what should be done. The Libs have nailed the flag of racism to their mast, so it won’t be them who lead the way in the foreseeable future

      The cruise ship Australia mentality doesn’t excuse in particular a knowledgable man like Carr for talking the lying inhumane rubbish he talked with Jones.

      Certainly not a hopeful start for the krudd regime, but no surprise

      chris hunter in another post throws around a lot of big concepts about humanity. But these is quite beside the point (as well as being very doubtfully true).

      Australia is quite capable of doing the right thing about the refugee issue in its own back yard. But first Australians need to realise they are no longer insulated from the rest of the world.

      The world has changed. Enclaves of white, rich, dozy people can no longer ride roughshod over everyone else with no consequences

      THAT is the big concept that we should be talking about. There is no choice; we can’t prevent countries in our region letting refugees reach our shores. And short of murder, WE can’t stop them either. By trying we will not achieve our ends, and we *will* alienate a lot of people who now are able to make their anger felt - e.g. Bali

      • I do find it strange that there is a widespread belief that we are being swamped by immigrants. Compared to whom? We already have natural barrier to people movement (we’re an island and we are a long way from everyone else. Our Migration policy is to take 190,000 migrants in 2013 of which we have set aside 13,750 of those for humanitarian. As long as we, as a Nation continue to see immigrants as a burden we will continue to have stupid arguments about boat arrivals. The best way to stop people arriving by boat is to provide planes and dramatically increase our immigration targets.

        • Roger, NO ONE is complaining about immigrants, they are mainly white and they have skills our own people don’t have. Rednecks hate boatpeople, refugees, asylum seekers, who are mainly dark-skinned..
          Don’t take 190,000 immigrants,but instead take 190,000 refugees and add to it another 13,750…

          That was my idealistic dream like solution to the problem.

          • But Helvi you can’t separate policies on refugees and immigration. A lot of immigration today is reuniting the wider family with the ones who initially arrived as refugees. All parties treat refugee/immigration as a problem rather than an opportunity. If we switched the National thinking to all types of immigration being an opportunity we could create jobs, more tax for services and infrastructure, etc. How crazy is it to accept people in, on the “bones of their arse” and deny them the opportunity of work thereby forcing them to be a burden on society? And what is the issue with holding them in detention for 2-3 years. If you can’t complete a character check on someone within 6 weeks you won’t be any clearer in 2 years. This is a little hobby horse of mine. And it has nothing to do with ALP or LNP, both parties have retarded policies on this.

            • If my over 200,000 refugees idea does not suit you, then I’m very happy to accept 200,000 immigrants AND 200,000 refugees as well…
              As this a big, empty country, I’d let all half million in…
              To be realistic, this is only my humble opinion, I don’t think that even one Liberal voter would agree with me; I’m talking about compassion, not about how those poor bastards would benefit the country.
              And of course you realise that the more compassionate Labor can only do so much with the heartless Liberals in the Opposition…

          • Gary at Long Jetty

            Rednecks - people who work outdoors (and plenty of others) - are angry at those who show up uninvited, claiming welfare, medical, dental, housing and never have to work and pay tax. Bob Carr admitted this week:

            “Well we’re talking about impressions here, and the advice I’d got is that overwhelmingly the Iranians coming here are middle class Iranians, they’re from the majority ethnic and religious group in the country. And they’re coming here as economic refugees, they’re coming here to improve their economic - as economic migrants, not as refugees, they’re coming here to improve their economic circumstances. And that is an understandable human motivation Chris, but that’s why we have a regular migration program.”

            “And the point I’d make is that [indistinct] profile of many of the current surge of arrivals suggest they are immigrant [indistinct] seeking economic opportunity and a better life, rather than fleeing persecution in the way contemplated by the Refugees Convention.

            And I’ve been saying, without pre-judging any individual claim, that’s for the Immigration Department officials who undertake assessments at the Refugee Tribunal. But I am saying the profile has changed in the way we’ve been discussing, and that applies to the Sri Lankans, and we’ve got a return agreement with the Sri Lankan Government. That’s a very good thing, I thank them for it.

            The Iranians, and the Vietnamese [audio missing] if you look at those current arrivals. And that begs the question whether people coming from a majority ethnic and religious group are always, ipso facto, to be counted refugees.”

      • I got off the cruise ship years ago jsa. I didn’t enjoy the company, or, for that matter, the high cholesterol food. If you would just walk down the gangplank and meet me on the wharf jsa, then perhaps we could make sensible conversation. But anyway, if you can hear me from your high place, I’ll give it a go. Ahoy there:
        refugees are on the march, world wide, reacting to fear, conflict, famine etc, most of which can be traced back to manipulation, power, greed, fanaticism etc. No one country has the answer, Australia included. Tinkering at the edges might suit the cruise ship mentality but we need global solutions for a global problem, that is never ending, and has always been, as long as man’s arse has pointed to the ground. There are no such beings as ‘our refugees’ just refugees, on the run, all over the planet, the causes of which are bleeding obvious, but the solutions are not. Many people are born, live, and likely die in refugee camps. Fog horn diplomacy is utterly irrelevant. Abbott in particular is a xenophobic disgrace, a man without soul, without vision, without heart, without answers. His government was complicit in forcibly aborting and 8 and a half month ‘foetus’. Don’t ever forget that.

  4. Fantastic stuff Spleenblatt, the best thing I’ve read in ages.So true of the current political debate.

  5. If the aim is to win the election then Rudd and Carr will need to use the bayonet against Abbott but be careful not to over-reach. That is why he will not use Bob’s lines. The Indonesians will not appreciate being drawn into our domestic politics as they stated last week.The Govt must be careful not to give Abbott a free kick whilst still attacking his simplistic policy. Equally Rudd needs to offer some action of his own to show he is taking charge of the problem.


    We don’t fuck around in Mateland
    We get on with the job,
    Self pity and lovey-dovey don’t
    Change a thing -
    Boats get sunk!
    We don’t fuck around in Mateland.

    Come to think of it,
    We never did -
    Why use those smallpox blankets
    When you’ve got small bore?
    We showed them ruddy blacks
    That you don’t fuck with a fellow
    From Mateland.

    We don’t want big trees in Mateland
    So we chip ‘em off to the Japs,
    Plus we throw in a few of them ferals
    ’cause we won’t cop their crap,
    Believe me -
    We’re not goin’ green in Mateland.

    There’re no free drugs in Mateland
    To hell with HIV,
    No junkie gets a free hit from our hand
    Unless it’s a blow to the knees,
    As I said -
    We don’t fuck around in Mateland.

    Dobbings the sport of Mateland
    So get in and dob,
    Catch up with times in Mateland
    And be on the same side as God.

    published 26 Apr 02

    • I see why you did not like my criticisms of your poetry. You fancy yourself a poet, it seems.

      No offence, but I reserve the right to my own opinion of poetry. I’ve probably read too much great poetry to be easily impressed. I’ve read a couple of yours at Voices and here; I’ll refrain from offering an opinion on them if you prefer.

      I sympathise with the sentiments and the content.


    • jeez, CH, I love that!!

      • (apologies to DQ; I’m no aesthete, content trumps form every time with me; but I would say if asked that the raw style perfectly fits the visceral hatred displayed by the contents)

        • Thanks to all of the above, even you DQ. Visceral hatred says it all. No, I wasn’t out to impress, but to dismay.

          • Dismay the reader with emotive power?

            Maitland? Catholics? It fails the truth test, the grammar test, the unnecessary words test.

            There is nothing about mateship in this poem, or land.

            • No, its about ‘hateship’, generated through the Howard era. I have written plenty of eloquent poems, like the ones studied by those Hungarian University Students, final year MA. The driver, with respect the aboriginal references, was provided from raw experience, living among aboriginal ‘countrymen’ in the NT. A book, and expensive at that, was given to my wife in the middle nineties by a Wave Hill elder who had come down to stay with us in SA. It was edited by David Headon, titled North of the Ten Commandments. Have you read it? And by the way its Mateland, not Maitland.

              • I was waiting for someone to start talking about Maitland and the grammar; I did not need to wait long.

            • Angus, put your own poem on the blog, and let’s see how you fare.

              • I think Angus needs to actually read the poem first. Every word in his post shows the failure to even read it.

                He might also notice that it was written in 2002.

    • Well done Chris; I like the sentiment.

    • I like it because it’s about real things, not about raindrops glistening on some bloody gum leaves, it seems to flow naturally,it’s not forced in a straight jacket…

      For poetry to touch me it has to be about something real and a bit raw…

  7. Does Bob Carr believe it to be good policy as well as a good idea to force the plane of the Bolivian President to land in Austria on the suspicion that an American whistle blower is on board?

    Are the Europeans being disingenuous in berating the USA for spying on Europe while at the same time assisting the US in trying to detain the Bolivian President by denying his plane airspace?

    If Bob Carr was on board a plane, say with Julian Assange, would he succumb to having his flight forced to land, and would he be OK with that?

    • Yanks just brilliantly ensured Snowden gets refuge somewhere.

      They are just so abso-bloody-lutely fascinated by their own power that they don’t realise that every time they use it they create new enemies - the chief Al Qaida recruiters have been in teh White House for 12 years

      I often wonder if it is Hollywood, where some steely-eyed yank with a BIG gun solves everything. Maybe there should be a note at the end of all action films: “WARNING; if you work for the CIA, Defense or the White House, note that the preceding movie was a fantasy”

    • If Bob Carr was on a plane with Julian Assange he would be on the way to the USA to deliver his prisoner.

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