Monthly Archives: December 2014

The Twenty-Three Worst Things The Liberals Did Yesterday (146)

It was thought more women would murder their children now that the famed sadist Morrison was in charge of harassing their lifestyles and butchering their incomes. Some women, after all, had aborted their children on Christmas Island after he had threatened their future. He would make war especially, his office announced, on disabled children. ‘Eight hundred thousand was too many,’ they said, inferring they would be reclassified as ‘able’, and evicted from their lodgings if they did not find work.

It was thought by about forty-three Liberals on this continent that he was a popular appointment. But fifteen million Australians did not like him, and many feared him. That this pirate, kidnapper, child-abuser, liar and assister of murderers should be targeting mainland Australians now left hundreds of thousands who were in the know, lawyers and social workers and the like, aghast and vengeful. It was possible the Victorian Attorney-General might ask him, soon, to assist them in their enquiries into the self-burning-to-death of two black men in Geelong sent crazy and frantic by his policies. It was feared by the Chief Minister of the Northern Territory that a young Iranian on hunger-strike, whom S&M had forbidden to be force-fed, would die on Christmas Eve, as James Stewart almost did in It’s A Wonderful Life, and this would make Morrison, and possibly himself, eligible for trial at The Hague.

At any rate, his appointment meant his party would not regain power in any election in the next fifteen years, and might mean, over time, that party’s extinction. Bolt, Jones, Hewson, Fraser, Sheehan, and, on occasions, PVO and Speers and even Fran Kelly were revolted by his policies now. No-one at a barbecue said he was a ‘proud Liberal’, or she. The feeling of ‘alien invasion’ or ‘gremlin multiplication’ was widespread. A feeling of ‘End Time’ unsettled the nation.

It was due, perhaps, to the number of children wrongly killed on Abbott’s watch. Four hundred in Gaza, a hundred and twenty in Islamabad, fifty-seven on Malaysian Airways, eight in Cairns, Luke Batty, the hundreds lately aborted or attempting suicide on Christmas Island. It seemed the Liberals had no thought for the children they professed to be trying to save from our unruly, onrushing debt. The hundreds of thousands displaced, impoverished and smashed in their schooling after the end of car-building and submarine-building in this country. The adolescent country girls who must now suck off truck drivers, or get no income. It was an almost African barbarity Australia was now in, from a ‘government of no surprises’ that had come up out of a trap-door like Old Scratch, like the Devil, in a medieval comedy.

And to do what they did at Christmas, unveil the very Devil, S&M, the trenchant sender-back of weeping children to torture in Sri Lanka, seemed to some observers extremely misguided. Christmas was to do with affirmation, and hope. He was the harbinger of apocalyptic, howling panic.

And yet some thought him a ‘good appointment’. They were not always the authors of the headline ‘We Need You, Tony’, though. Some had university degrees. A few had written books. And none could see the obvious: that giving Morrison this job was an act of hari-kiri, public self-disembowelment, their organisation could not survive.

Another day passed, and no TV interview of any Lindt Cafe survivor occurred, and no autopsy was released. It was clear to some observers that the police, not Monis, had killed Katrina Dawson, and Abbott was hated for not talking to the monster, at no risk to himself, and thus preserving five, or eight, lives.

Monis’s wife, accused of the murder of his first wife, remained at large. Bambi said he would have her ‘bail conditions investigated some time on Monday’, a full year after the murder and seven days after her husband, the well-known serial rapist and persecutor of war widows, had proved such a pestilential menace to the economy and the ‘innocence’ of Sydney. Twenty unborn children Morrison had sentenced to a hundred years on Nauru were not, or not yet reprieved. ‘Bah humbug,’ Dutton is said to have said. ‘Make that two hundred years.’

‘The man who stopped the boats yesterday declared he will stop the bludgers,’ wrote Daniel Meers, a fawning Liberal voter, in The Daily Telegraph. He will ‘put rorters back to work,’ he said of this battle-hardened political warrior who now called himself the ‘Minister for Economic Participation’, a blood-freezing Orwellian epithet which lost the Liberals a hundred thousand votes overnight. It meant, by the sound of it, that a twenty-six year old father of two who had just lost his job on an auto assembly line would get no money for six months and neither would a waitress in a country town with one child and no husband; or this would be the case if Morrison could persuade Milne or Muir or Palmer to agree with it; though it was believed he could not even persuade Josh Frydenberg.

It was already thought Abbott was in a desperate case, and he no longer had the numbers to withstand a challenge by Turnbull, Bishop, Robb, Dutton, Hunt or Frydenberg, and the only predator who could not beat him, Morrison, was being pitched into a sacrificial fire of unsellable policy by a havering schmendrik with no other option but scrambling for time, hourly prayer, one-armed push-ups, Credlin rubdowns, and hoping something would turn up.

And so it went.

Death Knell

Amazingly, Morrison is now in charge of persecuting the old and sick, the jobless young, the two million carers of the disabled (that is, 25 percent of the vote), and the disabled, and negotiating with Christine Milne, who thinks him a monster, to get legislation through the Senate.

His habitual cruelty will lessen the Liberal vote in all age-groups, especially the over-65s, and smash all residual chance of the Coalition winning in any state, or federally.

This is because his way of working — that is, in total secrecy — cannot be done on mainland Australia, among people who live in articulate communities, exchange views in pubs and ethic associations and coffee shops, and vote.

It makes it more likely, too, that the Andrews, Palaczsczuk, Weatherill and Robertson governments will come after him, for scaring frightened young women into having abortions, frightened young men into burning themselves to death, persecuted children into attempting suicide, one young Iranian into a hunger strike, and condemning the unborn to a hundred years on Nauru, a place condemned by the United Nations as unfit for growing children.

It may be some authorities are coming after him already, and this is why he was moved, or why, perhaps, he asked to be moved.

His appointment is the death knell for the Abbott government anyway, which will be on 39 two party preferred by Australia Day, and likely to lose eighty seats, and power for twenty years.

Or perhaps forever.

The Twenty-Three Worst Things The Liberals Did Yesterday (145)

Joe Hockey said his Budget was ‘fair’ though it persecuted the old, starved the young, ended public schooling and enriched pregnant millionairesses, and added, ‘All right, if it wasn’t, it’ll be fair next time.’ His rating as the least popular Treasurer in world history he said was a ‘misfortune’ but he had ‘goodies’ which would intensify the ‘debt and deficit disaster’ next May. ‘We’ll have the biggest deficit in our history,’ he exulted, ‘and, look, debt works.’ He would never bring down a Surplus, of course, but the new Obama-Castro deal would keep him ‘well-stocked with Cuban cigars’.

For the sixth day Abbott made no contact with the chocolate cafe survivors, posed for photos with none of them, lest they upbraid him to his face for leaving them to die when he could have saved eight of them with a phone call to the monster, a flag, and a false news item. The police kept them as quiet as they could, though the police chief, Scipione, revealed his daughter came within minutes of being one of them, and was said to be getting snakier by the minute, especially with Brandis, who had dropped the monster off his list after getting six hundred million dollars to be more vigilant with Muslim lunatics.

All over the nation, it seemed people thought the Lucky Country had run out of luck and it was the Liberal Party’s fault. Joe’s ruin of the auto industry was part of it, and Abbott’s war on the CSIRO, and the half billion dollars he was paying for the insertion of religious pederasts into public schools. It was believed the Liberals were like aliens, or gremlins, or Ebola germs, and, though they had adherents, they didn’t have friends any more. At least three hundred North Shore people would still vote Liberal, it was thought, but none of them would want Abbott, Hockey, Brandis, Cormann, Andrews, Abetz, Bernardi or Bronwyn Bishop coming to dinner.

None of Murdoch’s regular whingeing bullies appeared in The Sunday Telegraph (except Akerman, a close friend, bagging Gillard), though eight pages of messages on the flowers of Martin Place filled up the deficit, and it was feared the Dark God Moloch was realigning himself with Shorten. Troy Bramston, a Labor voter and a Liberal propagandist, said on Agenda Shorten was ‘in big trouble’ because more Australians disapproved of him than approved him, though his party was two million votes ahead of Abbott’s and had been all year; and he seemed unsettled by the change of emphasis in PVO (the Choirboy) and the Faustian scumbag Paul Kelly after his constant betrayal of Labor on Skynews all last year.

A minute-by-minute account of Monis’s last quarter hour shows nine minutes between the monster firing his first ‘warning shot’ at some escaping hostages and being easily snipeable for two minutes in the window. He then kills Johnson and is snipeable for two more minutes. The fool cops, though, prefer to storm in and, after killing him, fire six to seven hundred bullets at God knows who. It seems unlikely Monis fired at Dawson, not them, and it was they who wounded, most likely, with their insane targetless firefight the blameless mother of three or provoked, perhaps, with multiple stun grenades her infarct. No interviews with the survivors were effected by Kate McClymont or Ray Martin or anybody . A cover-up the size of Watergate was now, it seemed, in progress. It has not been explained why Muslim negotiators were stopped from approaching the cafe by police. It was likely, some said, that Brandis had bellowed at Baird or Scipione that the last thing a bigoted nation now needed was Muslim heroes in a death-cult terrorist siege that might end ‘without a fatality’.

The Prime Minister’s Office neither confirmed nor denied that Abbott would go to hell after promising a dying man he would allow a conscience vote on assisted suicide, a mortal sin as bad as buggery. It was assumed his Confessor, Pell, was yelling at him on Skype in the early hours of Sunday morning and beseeching his repentance and recantation. He would announce his cockamamie new Ministry, it was said, one retaining Hockey, Johnston, Morrison, Brandis, Abetz and Andrews, because he did not have the numbers to remove even one of them any more, so detested was he by his caucus, on Sunday afternoon.

Baird announced he would buy marihuana from American drug lords and ease into death any voters who might ask for it. He did not say who would pay for this illegal hoard, or wwho he would license to roll it into cigarettes and sell from a kiosk outside St Vincent’s Hospital ‘The name $inodino$ comes to mind,’ the Muddleheaded Bambi is said to have said, ‘and a committee will looking into this possibility.’

A copper refusing to say who the murderess and her seven dead children were — a tactic never before used in world history — overwhelmed the announcement of Abbott’s new ragtag-and-bobtail Ministry.

This, however, soon occurred. Hockey was kept, Johnston sacked, Morrison removed from the Ministry For Tormenting Infant Children before charges were laid against him, and put in charge of tormenting teenagers and forcing them into prostitution, a job he will doubtless, as a proven sadist, hourly relish. Dutton, a softie, was likely to release those babies S&M had sentenced to a hundred years on the birdshit-riddled hellhole Nauru. ‘Science’ reappeared as a subsidiary to ‘Industry’ now there was no industry left, despite MacFarlane’s attempts to keep it, and Sussan Ley, apparently a woman, given Health, a ministry that would not be after 2017 funded any more.

Across the nation, five hundred thousand disabled people and their two million carers and family members imagined Morrison at the door, and flinched.

In a wonderful phrase, Wong called Morrison’s reign ‘short, nasty, and secretive’.

And so it went.

The Twenty-Three Worst Things The Liberals Did Yesterday (144)

Eight children were killed by a troubled woman in Cairns. This equalled in number the abortions procured by despairing women on Christmas Island after Morrison threatened their unborn with life imprisonment on Nauru. Morrison now threatened other unborn with equivalent punishment for the crime, he said, ‘of being born in 2015 and not, as I will tolerate, 2014. My patience is not limitless.’

No interviews with the surviving Lindt hostages were allowed, or attempted. It was known that some of them would upbraid Abbott for failing to save, when he might have, five of their lives, at no risk to his own. Baird professed feelings of ‘guilt’ because the monster had got out on bail.

It was known, but not admitted, who killed Katrina Dawson, and why nine minutes passed between the first discharge of the monster’s weapon, and the second. It was not known why it took fifty or sixty rounds to kill him, and who else they wounded also. It was not known why nearby siege-trained army sharpshooters were not invited in, nor why no sniper shot the monster in the nine minutes after the first discharge of his weapon, or the fifteen hours before that.

$inodino$ walked the plank, and spoke of the ‘freedom of speech’ his demotion to the back bench now afforded him. Many New South Wales Liberals quaked at this, fearing he might elaborate on his connection with Obeid, and the ten million he did not get for not, successfully, bribing O’Farrell (if that was the case) into giving a five hundred million dollar contract to his sewage-moving company.

Gillard asked those who had called her a criminal to apologise to her. Abetz would not; he maintained his amazing story that ‘certain union-connected people’ who sought to overthrow the state could not be named lest they kill him. He would not say what crimes those ‘union-connected people’ could be arrested for, or whether Victoria, a Labor state, would soon begin to investigate, if ever, these ugly, muscly, simian people. It seemed many millions had been wasted, and more would be in the coming year, on what Sabra Lane called ‘a beat up’.

Gerard Henderson, a Liberal propagandist, called the addled Shi-ite cleric a ‘Sunni terrorist’, cursed Waleed Ali, a Muslim, for misreporting the Boston Marathon massacre, and blamed David Marr, among other ‘leftists’, for encouraging Monis into ‘an act of unseemly atrocity’. Gerard was amazed to find his payment by Murdoch was down to a hundred dollars a week.

Murdoch came to town, and, in the manner of the movie ‘I Was Monty’s Double’, thwarted pursuing papparazzi by speeding a withered lookalike round Sydney in his limousine. His minions, cringeing, wondered if he was about to sack everyone and throw his media behind Bill Shorten, the ‘coming man’ whose party, Labor, was now 1.5 million votes ahead of the current crazed unravelling backs-to-the-wall regime and bid Tony Abbott a lousy final Christmas in the Lodge. ‘The Lucky Country has run out of luck,’ he is said to have said, ‘and the wackhead Tony Abbott is its bumblefooted Grim Reaper.’ Or words to that effect.

Obama recognised Cuba, and Murdoch’s columnists said not a word about it. It was noted that Fidel Castro had outlasted Eisenhower, Kennedy, Johnson, Nixon, Ford, Carter, Reagan, Bush 1, Clinton and Bush 2, despite six hundred plots to assassinate him, five hundred by the CIA, and thirty-three attempts, one with an exploding cigar, and was well thought of throughout South America, Europe, the Middle East, China, India, Russia and Africa, not least because of his doctors presently containing ebola there, and a health care system Obama might now extend to the USA. Shanahan, Pryce-Jones, Albrechtsen, Henderson, Hildebrand, Van Onselen, Day and Devine made no mention of this enormous world-altering event in their opinionated columns. Their menacing Moloch, Murdoch, had not yet told them what to say.

John Hewson, a former Liberal voter, said Abbott might now abolish the Education Ministry, and dropkick all schooling to the States, whose money for schools and universities he had cut by thirty billion, reneging thus on his commitment to Gonski, on which he had said that he and Shorten were on a ‘unity ticket’. This would follow his abolition of the Science Ministry, and his risible promise that ‘this will be a government of no surprises’. It was feared he would leave Hockey and Johnston where they were, and merely move Josh into $inodino$’s cavity, and a woman into Josh’s. There was ‘no chance’, backroomers assured the giobsmacked media, that $inodino$ would pay back the hundreds of thousands he did not earn while serving, or rather not serving, as an AWOL Assistant Treasurer. ‘Who do you think I am, Santa Claus?’ the merry acquisitive Greek is said to have said.

Abbott risked helfire by permitting, heretically, a conscience votte on euthanasia. ‘He will burn in hell,’ theologians said, ‘alongside Tory Johnson, a homosexual.’

Julie Bishop assured the deaths of thousands of Third World women by agreeing to Hockey’s crazy cuts to Foreign Aid. A billion continued to be spent on looking in three oceans for purposeless bits of MH 370.

Jetstar’s computer broke down, stranding thousands of ropeable Australians five days before Christmas. The responsible capitalist, Alan Joyce, a Liberal voter, earned twenty-one thousand dollars in the hours it took to sort it out. ‘It’s money Oi’ve orrned,’ he said. ‘Murry Chrastmas. Re-joyce.’

And so it went.

Propaganda Studies (10): Murder in Manoora

(First published by Independent Australia)

Let us imagine Campbell Newman stood on Murray Street, Manoora, and, his eyes welling, said, ‘We will get through this. We…will get…through this.’

This is a measure of how inadequate Liberal strategy sometimes is. Taking a leaf out of 9/11, it strives to alter a cock-up into religious occasion; to turn the emphasis away from the bungling bureaucrats that caused the calamity, or failed to prevent it, and towards the ‘glorious dead’.

Thus, in Sydney, we have not yet heard what Katrina Dawson died of, and why, after the first shot, the ‘crack team’ waited nine minutes before entering the premises, and why they fired so many rounds into a dark place, and who they hit. We do not know why witnesses have not yet been interviewed by Ray Martin, or why the Prime Minister has refused to be photographed with them, or to explain to them why he didn’t help them when they asked him to. No, all the emphasis is on the ‘glorious dead’, and how wonderfully the people have come out to adore and mourn them, and a crucial question, who killed who, and who wounded who, has been, thus far, averted.

In Queensland, it is more difficult. A woman has killed seven of her children, and a niece, and failed to kill herself. Who is there to congratulate? Who is there to praise? What sort of ceremony is there to be, with sung hymns and a memorial plaque?

What is the Premier to say?

He may have to say what moneys he withdrew from social services in that area. He may have to say why he did that. He may have to confess what bureaucratic threat or cancellation or restraining order moved this woman to do what she did. He may have to say what neighbours’ warnings were ignored, by officers in his pay.

Because the difficulty is, the Liberals build nothing. They make nothing. They fund the building of nothing. They cut costs. They sell things off. They sack firefighters and nurses, persecute schoolteachers. They hold Royal Commissions into unions whose members die in unsafe workplaces at a rate of hundreds a year and complain about it, calling them crooks and bullies and traitors. They close down Australian car factories and spend billions on foreigners searching the seven seas for crashed airplanes.

And when it comes to murder, they declare a flower-show, and refuse all money, or explanation, to the bereaved. An unveiled memorial, with a multicultural choir and an interdenominational prayer and hundreds of candles is as far as they will go. Not a penny to the bereaved. Not a penny.

Well, in this case, they will have to do something different. They will have to gaol a disturbed woman, bury her children, and say what the upside of all this is, at Christmas, in Australia. glorious, can-do, affirmative Australia.

It is likely now that the early Queensland election, meant to take place before the Senate Inquiry into Newman’s wickedness hands down its finding, is off.

And Newman’s propaganda skills, never wondrous, are on trial as never before.

And we will see what we shall see.

The Ellis Laws And The Old

(From David Holloway)

There’s no shortage of stereotypes surrounding older people. A key one revolves around the idea that those over say, fifty, get very set in their ways and that this worsens with the passing of the remaining decades. Add to that the related claim that most old blokes turn into crusty old grumps who see little good about the future, and you have a pretty potent image of what Bob Ellis and The Ellis Laws might be about.

The trouble is, and perhaps this is because I’m the wrong side of forty myself, The Ellis Laws is probably one of the most cogent, incisive looks at modern society that I’ve read. Whether it’s the role of CEOs or the lack of sleep most of us suffer from there’s some very well argued positions that are very difficult to refute – at least from my male, over-40 viewpoint anyway. Ellis relishes the role of observer and it stands him in good stead throughout – there’s less overstatement than I expected and also an avoidance of glorifying the past too overtly. I wouldn’t go as far as to say that Ellis puts forward an upbeat view, but he at least provides some building blocks on which he believes some positive changes could happen.

As the cover blurb puts so well, the is a small book that puts forward the “laws of life we always knew, but have not before now seen put in words”. Yes it’s mean to be irreverent, but that is only one aspect. There are some concepts discussed that force some pretty deep introspection, and that for me was the biggest reward this work generated.

You can buy the book for yourself here for the princely sum of $9.99. It’s ten dollars extremely well spent, and one of the few books this year that I’ll be handing on to others recommending they have a read also.

For transparency: I’m a big fan of Bob Ellis’ published works and I have previously written a review of his stage adaptation of Bob Carr’s Diary of a Foreign Minister (which I’ve also reviewed). After that review Mr Ellis kindly organised a lunch with myself and Bob Carr as a thank you. It was one of the most illuminating lunches of my sheltered life, but I don’t feel indebted to either Bob in any way and hope it hasn’t influenced this review in any way.

The Twenty-Three Worst Things The Liberals Did Yesterday (143)

Abbott, accused of blockheaded incompetence by Hadley, who gave him, to his face, a D-minus rating, scrambled for a distraction. He ordered a terrorist-seeking raid with guns blazing on four Sydney suburbs, and couldn’t find any. He announced a reshuffle, but couldn’t bear to do the obvious, swap Joe and Malcolm, discard Sinodinos, put Frydenberg in his place and some numerate woman in Frydenberg’s and, oh yes, terminate Johnston with extreme prejudice and replace him with Bronwyn Bishop; he wanted a quiet life. But the Furies were coming after him, not least in the form of the hostages he refused to save when he could, who would now, soon, be speaking up about it on, probably, Sixty Minutes.

Joe said he wouldn’t put up the GST to 15 percent, though every other nation had, and thus obliterate the deficit, and Abbott thought of murdering him. Baird kept appearing with a daft shiny face at the sea of flowers in Martin Place proclaiming Sydney’s redemption like the fundamentalist demagogue he used to be. Leigh Sales, a Liberal voter, treated him with adoring civility.

David Leyonhjelm, a former Liberal voter, said if the hostages had been armed to the teeth, they would have shot the terrorist and each other and that would have sorted it. Jacqui Lambie, a former army person, called him a ‘fucking idiot’.

The ACT was to spend a billion dollars extracting asbestos from roofs a Liberal Prime Minister, Gorton, refused to inoculate against this poison when he was begged to. No more than half a million Australians would die coughing blood because of his omission and it was thought that Abbott, perhaps, should apologise for it and offer the bereaved and dying buckets of money.

Ricky Muir ‘saved’ thirty-one babies from exile and condemned thirty-four more to a hundred years on Nauru, described by a UN committee as ‘hell with birdshit’, after cutting a deal with the ever more edgy Scott Morrison. S&M, hearing further boat people were being attracted by this happy redeeming destination to get on more and more boats, bellowed, ‘This agreement is a one-off and does not give you a ticket to Australia.’ The laughter of refugees, government officials and resuscitated smugglers echoed round Indonesia.

The Daily Telegraph, an organ of Liberal propaganda, charged Abbott with ’10 Fatal Failures’ in a two-page spread and called, in effect, for the sacking of Brandis and Hazzard. Monis’s extended bail when on a charge of murdering his wife; his absence from a watch list he had once been on; his prosperous lifestyle on welfare for eighteen years; his criminal record as a fraudster in Iran; his sexual tampering with forty female ‘disciples’; and his letters of congratulation to the Bali bombers and of cruel mockery to some Diggers’ widows: these were among the things that no more than six Liberal governments, state and federal, should have picked him up for, it was alleged. Matthew Benns and Ashlee Mullany also asked why the cops had waited nine minutes after Monis fired his first warning shot before coming in, guns blazing, and shooting, apparently, six hostages themselves.

Abetz proclaimed that though killing people was against the law he would suppress one third of his Crooked Unionists Report lest some thick-shouldered baddies who were named in it kill witnesses and seek to overthrow the state. Asked who these ugly murderous traitors were he said it would be ‘inconvenient’ for him to name names as he, too, might be killed for doing so, and ‘this government’s track record in hunting down homicidal criminals is among the worst, as you know, in world history. Ten of the killers of Reza Berati, for instance, are still at large.’ Asked what, in that case, would happen now, he said, ‘We’ll have to keep that quiet.’

Campbell Newman ordered the arrest and framing of Barry Crook, an associate of Clive Palmer, for kidnap, menace, blackmail and required untruths on oath. ‘Clive Palmer knew nothing about this,’ police said, ‘and it has nothing to with his Senate investigation of the criminality of two hundred associates of Campbell Newman,’ whilst elderly Brisbane reporters held their sides laughing helplessly.

$inodino$, having not earned a hundred and fifty thousand dollars in ministerial pay by ‘standing aside’ from his Ministry and not resigning it, resigned it with simmering regret at last and opened up, again, the question of the multifarious corruptions of the NSW Liberal Party, to which he, when President, donated a lot of money from a sewerage company he coincidentally headed, in return for ten million dollars, thus far unpaid. It seemed less and likely that the Liberals of ‘Bambi’ Baird would hold any more than a few North Shore seats in March after his bizarre ‘flower child’ song-and-dance in Martin Place, and the party might then plummet into extinction, like the Gadarene swine.

And it seemed more and more probable that Abbott, Credlin and Loughnane, fearing a Bishop or Turnbull putsch, were in a panic planning a putsch of their own and striving, the way one does, to exterminate Hockey after his vile remarks on Thursday and head off Turnbull by making him Treasurer.

And…the Cut&Paste column in The Australian, an organ of Liberal propaganda, quoted Bob Ellis four times and said his questions on missing camera footage from the Lindt Cafe shoot-out (shown once on Russian television and never again), and what sort of shotgun Monis had, clearly showed his pananoid dementia though ten million Australians had lately asked those selfsame questions. It then quoted a Townsville Murdoch hack, Ross Eastgate, asking, ‘What is Bob Ellis doing on the streets? Should he not be sectioned and placed in a secure institution for the protection both of himself and society? Discuss.’

‘Clear libel,’ Ellis growled, cheerfully. ‘Three hundred and fifty thousand dollars. Pray God there is more.’

And so it went.

Certain Housekeeping Matters (139)

I am putting up a diary entry from Christmas, 2009, on Ellis Gold. I will add to that a further section from The Capitalism Delusion, and some film and play reviews from the last few weeks.

I apologise for having been so preoccupied with the Abbott government’s foolish wickedness, but it was, you will agree, remarkable.

After Lindt: An Exchange


I’ve had a traumatic incident in my own life, and although engulfed by support and love, I could not have spoken of it to others for a very long time.

I assume the survivors of Lindt may well feel that way. I respect the media for keeping their distance from people they recognise as vulnerable..

I assume that the police, although trained for such, may well feel the horror of killing, and the PTSD aftermath of that even if this is their job, as Chris H describes so well.

Can we be kind?

Hugh Weiss

It will ruin their lives, FIK.

They might convince themselves they are strong & can just carry on with their lives, but it will not be so. Everyday there is likely to be small event which require them to decide their next step, only to find the extreme threat they’ve survived will force them to make a judgement. Will I or won’t I? Sooner or later in their lives, on long dark quiet nights, they won’t be able to sleep & memories will come back or wake them from nightmares.

I used to live a life on the edge FIK. Sometimes in war zones, but not necessarily within the relative safety of a military unit. I thought I was a hard man, bullet proof you might say, but not any more. There are only so many times you can suppress what you’ve seen & been through before it breaks you.

In 1985, I was in a government job & landed in Hanoi on the one flight a week plane from Bangkok. I went when directed. I nearly refused, but I felt I needed to confront daemons. It was a very hardline communist country then. As you landed, Noi Bai was still surrounded by long runs of bomb craters & manned anti aircraft sites. Disembarking on the tarmac you could see troops manning 12.7mm weapons on the roof, aimed at the passengers. One the ground we were directed everywhere by young NVA with AK47s. I have to tell you, I was in sheer terror in the midst of our enemy/former enemy. It took me every once of strength & control to keep myself together. I got through, but I have no idea how. I think it did help me in the long run. Within 12 months, most of the militarization was removed & I suppose I got used to it, but the original events I survived in earlier times, never really left me. They weren’t just in Vietnam. Kampuchea & Burma have their own nightmares.

I am a very happy stay at home person these days. No place like it.

A Question

What sort of shotgun did Monis have?

The Three Worst Things The Liberals Did Yesterday (142)

Murdoch took Richo off air and gave the wall-eyed thicko Paul Murray an extra hour. He called Craig Thomson a ‘grub’ who stole millions from toilet-cleaners to pay for sumptuous orgies but made no criticism of Baird or Abbott for letting Man Monis, wife-murderer, rapist and persecutor of war widows, roam free.

For the sixty-seventh hour no surviving witness was allowed to say what happened in the cafe. It was wondered by what authority they were thus prohibited from speaking freely. Since eleven of them escaped under their own steam, it was hard to see how police or government could forbid them to do anything. The parents of one suggested the gunman did not go to sleep at all. Information was coming out third-hand. Even Sixty Minutes was persuaded to ‘back off’.

Hockey called Brandis an idiot; with all that extra money, he couldn’t keep a known crazed murderer on a watch-list. Brandis, up against it, begged Uhlmann to spare him, pleading ignorance of everything. Baird wallowed in a sea of flowers, saying his ‘heart beat louder, and prouder’, and looked like a blithering idiot.

It was still not known if the culprit’s sawn-off shotgun was an automatic. It was still not known who killed Katrina. It was widely believed Abbott could have saved her if he had taken the phone call, though some of the men might have been endangered. If he had taken the phone call, it was agreed, she would have been home alive with her children on Monday afternoon.

Ray Hadley, a Liberal voter, told Abbott to his face he gave him ‘a D-minus rating’. A poll showed 51 percent of the people did not think Abbott would fight the next election as leader.

Some commentators wondered if Morrison’s vetting of ‘refugees’ was as bad as Brandis’s. Monis, a ‘refugee’, had been here for eighteen years — though Iran wanted him back, to face fraud charges — and a citizen for twelve. He lived for years on Social Security and set up, for a while, his own sexually abusive religion, threatened his first wife and then burnt her to death, and was therefore thought to be on an ASIO retainer. This crucial question would not be asked, of course, lest the extra six hundred million Hockey gave them to flush out baddies ‘come into question’.

Hockey was in one of his ‘sheesh’ moods, unsure if his stomach-staple was worth it, or if he would keep his own seat, North $ydney. It had, in times past, been an Independent stronghold for decades; and it seemed now the Liberal Party (‘the adults are in charge’) had no more future than the Democrats did when their leader was filmed groping two women at a Christmas party. The Morgan score on Monday, before the ‘incident’, was Coalition 42.5, Labor 57.5, and it would be, now, 40-60, surely, and sinking fast through Christmas. It was likely, though not certain, the Liberal Party would vanish from history by Anzac Day 2016.

A great, spontaneous, supportive friendship sprang up in the sea of flowers between Muslims, Christians, Buddhists and other, less religious Australians. To thwart this, Brandis ordered a dozen armed raids on Muslims in four Sydney suburbs, lest, as he said, ‘Goodwill break out, and bigotry — my creed — be mitigated, alas, in this, the Christmas season.’

Morrison declared thirty-one ‘unauthorised vaginal arrivals’ could stay in Australia, and so could their parents, on TPVs, he promised, for the next hundred years of nervous ill-paid underemployment. This wonderfully improved the people smugglers’ ‘business model’, and a dozen more leaky boats prepared to leave Indonesia immediately.

It was wondered how good at detecting such vessels Morrison was. His predecessors had mistaken, for sixteen years, the violent crazy criminal Man Monis for a genuine refugee. How many more such mistakes had been made? How many genuine refugees had been sent home to be killed? How many boats, indeed, had got through?

It was revealed, or hinted, that Tory Johnson had been shot and killed by Man Monis, and Katrina Dawson had died ‘by other causes’, and we would know this on Friday. ‘Other causes’ meant, for sure, a volley of some sort from the NSW police, or a ricochet.

And so it went.

Abbott’s New Inquiry

Shades of the Warren Report. It was asked by the President not to find out ‘Who killed John Kennedy?’ but ‘What were the circumstances leading up to Lee Oswald doing it?’

In this case the new inquiry will concentrate on Man Monis, and not on who killed Katrina Dawson, and who wounded four others, and whether Tony Abbott, by negotiating as he was asked to, could have saved her life.

One thing is certain, and that is the Baird and Abbott governments don’t know what they’re doing. They still can’t agree if Monis had a gun license or not. It has not occurred to them that a pump-action shotgun is illegal, and you can’t have a license for that, and the question is largely irrelevant.

Or was it a pump-action shotgun? Maybe it wasn’t.

Abbott performed well yesterday, seemed calm and measured and not too bewildered, but Baird has been a disgrace,

He said his ‘heart is beating louder and prouder now’ after all those flowers arrived, and proclaimed it a sort of high and holy occasion the nation should rejoice at, or the State should rejoice at, rather, since that’s where the votes were, a kind of quiet, radiant miracle.

He said ‘We will get though this. we will…get…through…this’, as if it was the San Francisco Earthquake and Fire or 9/11 or the Blitz or the Peshawar massacre, when it was merely his hot-headed coppers shooting a woman who didn’t deserve to die (if that’s what happened) while continuing to shoot at a man already dead in the dark at 3 am with weaponry suitable to Star Wars. ‘Collateral damage’, she would have been called elsewhere, and so the forensics will show; or not.

In the meantime there’s a scramble to stop any witness from talking, lest they implicate Abbott, who refused to talk to the gunman and allow five women thereby to get out, including Katrina Dawson, in the general cock-up.

It is to be wondered how long the ‘Who killed Katrina?’ question can be deferred. Lee Harvey Oswald was convicted, dead and buried three and a quarter days after the Dealey Plaza shots were fired, and that deadline is 7 am tomorrow morning.

Will we know by then who killed her? Of course we won’t.

It is inconvenient we know this, though it was known two days ago.

And so it goes.

The Lindt Cafe Fire-Fight

(First published by Independent Australia)

The rate at which we’re learning things about the Lindt Cafe fire-fight is among the slowest in modern history.

We don’t know yet whose bullets, or stun grenades, killed Katrina Dawson. We don’t know yet whose weaponry wounded four others. We don’t know the others’ names.

We don’t know why there were so many shots fired; and whether, in the dark, they knew who they were shooting at. We don’t know why this has not been revealed.

We don’t know why the police forbade the hostages to give any detailed media interviews. We don’t know why the Prime Minister refused them help when two of them begged for it. We don’t know why a Muslim cleric was not allowed to talk to the ‘terrorist’, as has happened in similar situations, hundreds of times, thousands of times across the world.

We don’t know much about anything. And we can only surmise an enormous cover-up is taking place.

Kate McClymont is nowhere to be seen. Somehow this case, involving Liberals, does not interest her in the way the Craig Thomson case did. Somehow she finds in it nothing to care about.

A plausible scenario is that both Monis and Johnson were alive when the cops came blam-blamming in, and both dead a second later, and Katrina Dawson gravely wounded. Another is that Johnson was dead, and in the ‘cross-fire’ police bullets, in startling numbers, wounded Dawson, and four others. If Monis’s weapon wounded six people we would have known of it, and the survivors would have been on television by now.

Or there may be some other explanation. Were there helmet-cameras, as there were in the raid on the home of Osama Bin Laden? What has happened to that videotape, if any? What has happened to the footage shown on Russian television, and nowhere else?

Why have the witnesses been told they can’t speak? Even John O’Brien, who left the premises eleven hours before the fire-fight happened?

It is almost certainly something to do with the Prime Minister’s refusal to help the hostages out, and thus let five of them, the women, probably, out of there. It is a massive cover-up, probably, of the Abbott cowardice, last seen when he cuddled koalas with Vladimir Putin. Or it may be something else.

It would be good if we knew something soon.

The Innocence Of Craig Thomson (74)

Craig Thomson has been found guilty of misspending some union money, at a rate, over five years, of eighteen dollars a week — that is, one tenth of one cent a week per union member — and made to pay a fine of twenty-five thousand dollars.

The initial sum he was accused of misspending was around five hundred thousand dollars, one hundred times the amount he was got for, and fools who made this allegation, like Paul Murray and Laurie Oakes, can be each sued now for three hundred and fifty thousand dollars, and Craig I’m sure is considering this; and considering as well going after his union rival Kathy Jackson, herself bound soon for the slammer for notable crack-pated greedy sins of her own; as well as Pyne and Abbott, who on the floor of parliament so harried and bullied him he came near nervous breakdown, not least because of the effect they had on his pregnant wife.

But…the amount he misspent, around 4,800 dollars, was one third of what Abbott misspent on his book tour, taxpayers’ money he had to give back, and one eighth of what Pyne misspent on a trip to Italy, and is not presently eager to repay.

The court action cost Craig his parliamentary seat, his Labor Party membership, four hundred thousand in legal fees, a goodly number of friends, and his peace of mind. Having met him I thought he was not lying, and compered a money-raising event for him, conducted some opinion polls for him (the results weren’t good) and wrote seventy-four pieces, or thereabouts, on his innocence on my blog.

He is out in free air now. And it is possible he knows things about Pyne — his relationship with Ashby, for instance — that he might hereafter choose to air. Or he might simply sue him, and Abbott, and twenty or thirty other Liberals, and thirty-five or forty journalists, Paul Murray in particular, for three hundred and fifty thousand dollars each.

He is a good man, and would have made a fine Attorney-General, and so it goes.

In Twenty-Five Words

How much of the Martin Place footage has already been erased? How much was on the helmet cameras of the police team? Where is it?

The Three Worst Things The Liberals Did Yesterday (141)

Under cover of the chocolate shop siege, Joe Hockey revealed he would not go after big multinationals for their dodged back taxes, thus costing the Budget eight or nine billion dollars. Abbott refused to meet, or pose with, any of the siege survivors lest they accuse him, on camera, of causing two deaths by refusing to talk with Man Monis on radio. The OECD said Hockey’s Budget was ‘useless’, cursing, especially, Pyne’s high uni fees. Andrews ‘doubted’ if the Billionairesses’ Baby Bonus, revamped, would be ready by July. He thought it might have a ‘childcare component’ but he wasn’t sure. ‘It’s difficult for a lot of families,’ he said, amazing the nation.

Treasury said unemployment would jump to a ‘twelve-year high.’ Half the forty billion dollar deficit, it went on, was caused by there being too many jobless, and a quarter of a million workers expecting to lose their jobs after Joe bade the auto industry ‘piss off out of here, you whingeing bludgers’ a year ago, and was surprised when they did. Joe Hockey bade Australians go out and spend big this Christmas, and they were now too frightened, a survey said, to do so. It would be, soon, the ‘mingiest Christmas in many years’.

The esteemed Christ-eating beauty, Miranda Devine, a Liberal voter, cursed Wendy Bacon for remarking how nice a car-free inner city was yesterday, a ‘despicable slander,’ she foamed. Mark Kenny, the small but perfectly-formed erstwhile Abbott bromance, cursed Abbott for not flying the SAS from Perth to ‘take Monis out’ with ‘sniper fire’ and called the final fire-fight ‘a panicked, adrenalin-fuelled frenzy of flashing stun grenades and police all shooting at once through an open door’; at, apparently, Katrina Dawson.

None of the hostages were interviewed on Sunrise, or Agenda, or AM. It seemed they were being suppressed, lest they, too, curse Abbott for not saving five of them, one of whom would have been Katrina, by debating Man Monis on air, and showing, perhaps, his ignorance of Afghanistan. ‘It is better some Australians die,’ it is said that Loughnane and Credlin advised him, ‘than that you be exposed, in this way, as a foreign policy drongo.’

Alan Jones began to bag Baird and Abbott for letting a rapist-murderer and persecutor-of-war-widows out on bail, and the craven Murdochist in charge of the visuals cut away to glorious vast oceans of beautiful flowers in Martin Place, diverting our concentration. Baird, looking more and more like Porky Pig, said he had ‘no idea’ why Monis was out on bail, but ‘a new day was coming’ on January 31st when the rules would be changed. He seemed unfit for any office above Deputy Headmaster of Warialda Primary and experts, amazed, thought even Robbo could beat him by ten to twenty seats on March 24.

Rumours began that Paul Smith, Katrina’s husband, and a lawyer like her, would sue Baird or Hazzard or Scipione for unlawfully killing his wife. Reports in The Guardian suggested Monis had a female accomplice who did the filming for him and later got away.

John O’Brien, an octogenarian, and the first to escape the chocolate shop, said the police wouldn’t let him say what happened in there. He was unable to explain why any of it was a secret.

Craig Thomson was found guilty of misspending five thousand dollars, half what Abbott misspent on his book tour, and fined twenty-five thousand dollars. Unemployed, he now owed four hundred thousand in court costs, and could recoup this by suing Abbott, Pyne, Oakes, Albrechtsen, Akerman, Devine, Bronwyn Bishop, and twenty or thirty Liberal MPs for three hundred and fifty thousand dollars each.

A hunger striker neared death in Darwin after fifty days. An Iranian unable to go back there, or settle anywhere else, he had been sentenced by Morrison to seventy- or seventy-five years on Nauru. He would be Morrison’s ninth corpse if you counted aborted babies, and Morrison was looking forward, he said, to ‘double figures’.

In a press conference, Abbott revealed Man Monis had a gun license, and had for twenty years been living on Social Security here, though the FBI were after him, and the Iranians wanted him extradicted and we saved him from this. He did not deny that Katrina had been shot and killed not by Monis but an enflamed, fuck-headed Sydney copper, and it appeared that this was the case. It was then revealed on Skynews that he didn’t have a license after all and Abbott, as always, didn’t have a fucking clue.

And so it went.

The Silence Of The Chocolate Shop

It would seem the hostages have been required to keep silent on what happened.

This is because, I would think, Man Monis proposed to release five of them if he could talk to Tony Abbott, and Tony Abbott refused to talk to him, and the police said no-one could publish or broadcast this request. Or it may be Man Monis was dead or wounded before the fire-fight, which then wounded the four that were wounded, and killed the two who died.

Or it may be none of those things. What is certain, though, is that fifteen witnesses of events broadcast across the world have not been interviewed on television, or published in The Guardian, or the smh, for a reason that is political.

It is likely that, as in the tasering of the nude young man, it was a hot-blooded cock-up, and hostages were fired on in the dark when the ‘terrorist’ was already immobilised. It is likely that, because of this, Abbott has not rung or visited any of the survivors yet, or either of the families of the deceased. This omission is unique in our national history. It must indicate he is afraid of what they would say to him; accusing him, perhaps, of not doing what he could to save them, simply talk to Man Monis about Afghanistan.

Scipione said the police ‘saved lives, saved many lives.’ It is worth noting that of the seventeen hostages, eleven got away without police help, two were killed, one most likely by police gunfire, and four were wounded, also, probably, by police gunfire. At best, four lives were saved, and also endangered, out of seventeen.

We should not be complicit in this cover-up, if it is a cover-up. We should diligently seek out the witnesses and ask what happened. We should ask why the police, not a coroner, are conducting the coronial investigation.

We should not be conned.

Not this time.

Not this time.

Certain Housekeeping Matters (138)

Fluffy Moomin is banned for life.

The Last Days Of Mike Baird (1)

It is hard to see Mike Baird has not destroyed himself politically in the last twenty-four hours. He did not order a sniper to ‘take out’ Monis when it was clear he could. He did not demand Tony Abbott ‘debate’ the terrorist on Afghanistan when that was all he wanted. He did not curse ASIO for not having Monis, a wife murderer, widow persecutor and serial rapist, on a list. He did not immediately imprison other suspicious characters now out on bail. He said he had to wait till January 31st to do so, it would be ‘bureaucratically difficult’ to speed the day.

He had an instant memorial service to which the families of the deceased were not invited. He talked, in Rake’s stamping ground, of the ‘lost innocence’ of inner Sydney, a few yards from where Captain Phillip hanged chicken thieves on Saturday night, and sold arriving convict women to the highest bidder. He congratulated the trigger-happy Sydney police for spraying bullets into the dark and killing, if they did, Katrina Dawson with stun grenades that provoked, if they did, her heart attack.

Ten of Baird’s MPs are on corruption charges or under investigation for some sort of electoral impropriety. His former party president, Sinodinos, is too. He is proposing to sell the poles and wires. He had little security at Whitlam’s funeral, which could have been a ‘turkey shoot’ of celebrities.

Worse, he overdid the lachrymose post-mortem oratory the following dawn. ‘We will get through this,’ he said, ‘we will get.. through… this’, as if it were the Newcastle earthquake, or the school siege at Peshawar, with a hundred and thirty schoolkids murdered. He behaved as if the whole thing was a surprise, though he works in a building defended with electronic machinery and armed guards against this very sort of thing.

Clearly, he doesn’t know what he’s doing, and, more clearly, the voters sense this now, as of yesterday; and, in a state where Labor’s federal vote is now 57.5 (Morgan, yesterday), it will be hard for him to win a March election where his opponents ask the simple question, ‘Why wasn’t Monis in gaol? How can you, our protector, be trusted to protect anyone, after this?’

It would be okay, or it would be more okay, if he had a more authoritative personality, like Carr, Keating, Debus, Rees, Foley, Firth, Plibersek, Refshauge, Hawke, Turnbull. But he seems a shy adolescent, out of his depth, still learning the ropes, still catching up.

It would have been better for him politically if more had been killed. A massacre of all seventeen, okay, that’s a national tragedy. But losing two looks like carelessness. And when it proves all seven of the wounded had police bullets in them, fired in the dark, it will go hard on him, the man in charge who could have ordered it ended, ended brutally, in any daylight hour, and blinked.

It is likely now, not certain, there will be Labor governments in Victoria, NSW, Queensland, the ACT and South Australia by the end of May.

And so it goes.

The Three Worst Things The Liberals Did Yesterday (140)

Baird ordered a memorial service for two people who had been alive ten hours before, a world speed record, in a Catholic Cathedral neither attended, which their families did not come to. By this he hoped to ‘close down’ questions raised as to who had killed them. Footage shown on Russian television suggested the frontal assault with guns blazing on a man who had thus far killed nobody, had provoked the two deaths and, as in the case of the young man tasered to extinction for not wearing a shirt, the Sydney cops had stuffed up again; killing, perhaps, an admired female lawyer with three children; not necessarily with bullets but with the cardiac effects, perhaps, of their ‘stun flashes’; of which there were, perhaps, no more than sixty.

The tasering officer was forgiven for murder twelve minutes after the service began; a happy coincidence.

In that service, the teenage Archbishop said one does not expect to be kidnapped and murdered in Sydney while drinking chocolate, something he himself had done at that cafe sometimes. Nor, he might have added, does one expect to be fired upon by midget submarines, or tasered to death after stealing a biscuit, or run over by Robin Askin. It may be that no-one had shown him an episode of Rake, or Scales of Justice, or Blue Murder, or told him it was a city under Red Alert, a condition more dangerous than New York after 9/11, and one should tread very carefully; lest one wind up enduring Cleaver Green’s pro bono attentions, and having to do lunch with him, in that restaurant that never has any customers.

He might have added as well that no security occurred on any trains despite that Red Alert, and Baird, and Scipione, seemed not to know what they were doing. They had supplied no ‘security’ when five Prime Ministers attended Whitlam’s funeral, either in Town Hall or among the multitude outside, where an Underpants Bomber might have mingled undetected among the True Believers, or any of the five hundred political celebrities going up the stairs, or any of the thousands getting off the train below.

Abbott, looking beset, congratulated the Sydney police for not killing the murderer sooner and so saving two lives; their failure to do this was ‘exemplary’, he said. Nor did he say why he did not talk, when asked, to the terrorist and calm him down. Nor did he say that Brandis’s ‘Red Alert’ had utterly failed and he was firing him, or whether or not Monis was on ‘a list’, and whom the fuck you had to burn to death and rape in hundreds to get on the list.

Then he revealed he wasn’t on the list, and said, ‘This puzzled me too.’ Asked why he wasn’t on the list, he said, ‘It’s a question that should be asked, but not yet.’ But…even if Monis had been shirtfronted, he added, even if he had been ‘monitored day and night’, he might have done it anyway. He was that kind of guy. And there was no reason, he went on, why a rapist-murderer-ISIL-supporter should be watched any more than, say, Cat Stevens.

Baird said the new bail laws would come in on the 31st January, hallelujah, and this would allow ‘no more than three or four Monises to do their worst over the Christmas break’, before the new laws locked them up as ‘undesirable pedestrians’, or whatever the new category was.

By day’s end it was revealed that Monis would have released the hostages if Abbott had agreed he would debate him, on radio, on the subject of the war in Afghanistan. But Abbott feared he was not that good a debater, and he thought it better some Australians die than that he, their leader, be embarrassed. The way you do.

This meant the Coalition vote would be down below 40 by Christmas and Baird could not now win in New South Wales.

And so it went.

In Five Words

Whose bullets killed Katrina Dawson?

The Red Alert That Failed

‘Shotgun pellet wounds’. ‘Out on bail’. ‘The Prime Minister refused to speak to him’. These are some of the things that should be talked about, and will be covered up or fudged in the next few days.

Did the ‘terrorist’ have a non-lethal weapon? Why was this not known? Was the initial gunfire non-life-threatening!? Was it police gunfire, not his, that killed the ‘innocents’ who died?

He was a man charged with sexual assault this year, and, before that, with complicity in the murder of his ex-wife, who was burned to death. He had written insulting letters to the families of dead Australian soldiers in Afghanistan. He was a ‘self-styled cleric’ preaching hate in a time of a Red Alert. He was accused of sexual offenses. Yet he was out on bail.

Why did the Prime Minister refuse to speak to him? Why has the Prime Minister not done a press conference this morning? Why has he merely spoken, and refused to answer questions?

Is it, indeed, a ‘terrorist incident’ any more than, say, the killings at Sandy Hook? Was there a ‘death cult’ involved, as The Daily Telegraph alleged, or merely, as his lawyer suggests, a ‘nutcase’?

The ‘Red Alert’ in New South Wales has been worse than useless. The Whitlam funeral boasted five Prime Ministers and five hundred celebrity ‘prime targets’, and I, for one, was able to get in with a radio and a laptop that could have been bombs. It would have been easy to smuggle a pocket-knife in, or a shoe-bomb. There was no electronic device we had to go through.

There was moreover no search of the multitude outside. There were no snipers on any balconies or roofs, as there would have been at a funeral addressed by Barack Obama. There was no significant ‘security’ at all, plus five hundred prime targets, and a nationwide Red Alert.
There were no body-searches at any Opera House opening night. And Man Haron Monis, provenly a violent, crazy man, was allowed out on bail.
There is incompetence here, and millions wasted, on a cocked-up populist Chicken Little operation that failed to note that a man involved in the murder of his ex-wife, and the persecution of dead soldiers’ wives, might be dangerous.
> Baird said, ‘We will get through this. We will get through this.’
> But some officials won’t.

Propaganda Studies (9): ‘Terrorist Incident’

It will be a while before we know if this was a ‘terrorist incident’ or not. Though he cursed America, put up a black flag, wrote dark-hearted letters to the widows of dead Australian soldiers, took hostages and threatened them with death, he may have been just a ‘lone madman’ after all.

The sort of ‘lone madman’ Queensland cops killed three of last week. Or was it four.

The bigger propaganda difficulty will arise if it is proved that he didn’t kill anyone, that, as is likely, he fell asleep, some hostages ran out, others struggled for his gun, which fired, and cops came blam-blamming in and killed a couple of them, and wounded five others.

It is hard to imagine why fifty rounds were fired at a single target who survived all those bullets and kept firing back. Something else happened. The ‘mad dog cop’ response that Victorian police, and Queensland police, are famous for, probably. Or the terrorist was already dead, and they shot at a hostage holding his gun.

The greater difficulty will be telling the hostages they must cover up what happened, and say the cops behaved with ‘appropriate care’.

It is not likely they will.

And so it goes.

Certain Housekeeping Matters (137)

I have done a piece about the chocolate shop deaths that should be up soon in Independent Australia. I will get it put up here soon after that.

The Three Worst Things The Liberals Did Yesterday (139)

Abbott spent half a billion dollars on terrorism prevention in November, and found himself in December facing, to his dismay, a single terrorist who was ruining Sydney’s economy. Tourists, in hundreds of thousands, would leave that city soon, and, in millions, wouldn’t come to Australia hereinafter. Tens of thousands of Christmas shoppers would never come to the CBD again. After ten hours, ASIO still didn’t know who he was, who his detainees were, how many there were, what he wanted, or what the fuck was going on.

It was furthermore not known why Martin Place, which terrorists had specifically threatened four months ago, had been so poorly guarded, and whether there were adjacent bombs in the Parliament, the Reserve Bank, the Opera House, or other chocolate outlets in the city. It was thought Joe Hockey, armed with chocolates, might approach the villain, as he lately had Clive Palmer, and ‘come to an arrangement’. It was then decided Joe was the worst negotiator in the world, and Plan B set in process.

This involved the Premier and Prime Minister crawling under the lino, and putting their toes in their ears. Their advertised policy, ‘We do not negotiate with terrorists’, was gamely altered to ‘We will negotiate with any terrorist we can find. How many are there? How much do they want? What flavour?’ We have the best negotiators in the world. What does he want?’ By 10 pm it was believed they were dealing with only one man, and he might come quietly, and as such could be barely thought a terrorist at all, and there were no bombs or anything in any part of the city. Or tourists.

Craig Thomson was acquitted of all charges except the theft of five thousand dollars, one sixth of what Pyne spent on a holiday in Italy, with which he bought, improperly, it was said, ‘firewood, hookers and cigarettes’. This meant, or might be construed to mean, that he could now sue eighty-eight Liberals, including Pyne and Abbott, who ran from the chamber to escape his unseemly odour, for three hundred and fifty thousand dollars each. Joe Hockey announced the worst balance of payments in fifty-two years, and said all was well, and if wasn’t, it was Labor’s fault.

A Newspoll showed Labor on 54, but Morgan, the correct one, showed them on 57.5 and winning 132 seats and the Coalition, maybe, winning 14, a gain for Labor of half a million votes in a week. Some thought it was due to ‘the Credlin-Bishop Wars’, others just ‘the Credlin Factor’, which was growing in significance, probably, by the day. It was agreed that Abbott could neither ditch his giant Nubian body-servant nor keep her on staff, and this was a difficulty. Some saw him delivering a speech like the Abdication Broadcast of Edward VIII, then resigning and moving to Jamaica with her; others thought she might be persuaded to accept, say, the Ambassadorship to Liberia, where her proud size and classic features would be acclaimed by the natives.

Others foresaw a suicide pact, like that of Antony and Cleopatra, and a final press release saying, ‘I have immortal longings in me’. It was all, in Laurie Oakes’s’ fine phrase, ‘a bit of a worry’, and it seemed to many that Abbott would not be in his position by April, nor Hockey by March.

Nor Credlin by Australia Day.

And so it went.

In Twenty-Four Words

There were five Prime Ministers at Whitlam’s funeral, and no security. When it comes to terrorism, Baird and Abbott don’t know what they’re doing.

The Three Worst Things The Liberals Did Yesterday (138)

A hundred bank executives said the Joe Hole was ‘stalling the economy’. Having destroyed two hundred and fifty thousand jobs by telling Holden to piss off, Joe now proposed to close down a hundred and fifty government entities, they noted, thus abolishing hundreds more. Mateus Cormann, whom some now call ‘the Grim Reaper’, gleefully announced which entities they were, then was told to his amusement he had abolished ten of them already. ‘I love to count, heh, heh, heh,’ he chuckled in his well-beloved Belgian monotone.

Farmers denounced Abbott for causing a drought and then not giving them drought assistance months ago, and causing thereby ‘multiple suicides’. Barnaby called ‘the shits in this cabinet’ those free-market Liberals who thought tsunamis, hurricanes, earthquakes and megabushfires occurred on a ‘level playing field’ and the ‘Invisible Hand’ would, over the centuries, or perhaps millennia, sort the piled-up ruins into saleable commodities. Joe said, ‘Only by sacking three hundred thousand Australians can we ensure a stable, confident economy in which new jobs will be created,’ and many rural backbenchers thought of killing him with their bare hands.

Brandis decided that some babies born here were ‘unauthorised vaginal arrivals’ who because of their ‘bad timing’ would consequently serve a hundred years or more ‘in legal limbo’ on Nauru, lately defined as ‘hell with birdshit’ by an authorised UN committee. ‘If they had shown remorse,’ he said, ‘I would have been more lenient with them; I would have sent them, perhaps, to Cambodia. But all they did was whinge, in an accent which I, frankly, found repellent, and greedily suckle, and soil themselves. In a nation of bigots, which I represent, we should have fewer such infants here, lest in later life they be persecuted by my successors, a terrible outcome you will all agree. It is better, on the whole, they die, in 2117, on Nauru. Out of sight, ho ho, out of mind.’

A survey showed a million more Australians than there were in September ‘gloomy about the economy’ and ‘behaving like Scrooge this Christmas’. Joe’s job cuts were nothing to do with the Surplus, he admitted, their purpose was to add half a billion dollars to the search for MH 370, a quest which would yield, now, no information whatever, the Black Box being dead, and deaf to their entreaties, and hard therefore to locate in an area of water the size of Queensland, and hundreds of millions scouring a cornfield in Ukraine and ‘protecting from justice’ those Ukrainians, if any, who shot down MH 17. These were ‘essential expenditures,’ he said, ‘like Pyne’s thirty thousand dollar three-day holiday in Italy, and his fifteen-hundred dollar daybed in Rome. He found it ‘amazing’, he said, that Australians did not share his sense of ‘fiscal emergency’ and agree to lose their jobs in hundreds of thousands to ‘restore some certainty to the bottom line’ and ‘bring the economy back to surplus by 2048, at the very latest.’

With a joyful sneer Chris Bowen said Joe ‘would never bring down a surplus budget’ and ‘though this present deficit is the worst in our history, it will be even more dire next year.’ Glenn Stevens said it would be ‘months’ before Australians were eating their pets, and ‘well over a year’ before they would be eating their children.

And so it went.

The Three Worst Things The Liberals Did Yesterday (137)

Laurie Oakes, a Liberal voter, said Credlin would have to take her eggs out of Abbott’s fridge and ‘mosey on down the corridor’. Paul Kelly, a Liberal voter, called Credlin a ‘barnacle’ soon due for removal though not Joe Hockey, a ‘total success’ in his portfolio. Dennis Shanahan, a Liberal voter, said of Credlin’s dominatrix rule of the PMO that comparisons to the ‘”chaos and dysfunction” of the Rudd years are inescapable’. Gerard Henderson, a Liberal voter, predicted one-term governments for both Abbott here and Cameron in Britain, and put his old head in his wrinkled hands.

Mark Textor, a Liberal propagandist, said ‘we must not be locked in the straitjacket of yesterday’ as Abbott, Hockey, Robb and Bishop reversed their every significant policy, from not funding a ‘Bob Brown Bank’ to punishing old sick women, and forcing the jobless young into whoredom, drug-muling and Basic Training, and still got no ‘bounce’ in the polls. In these, Abbott trailed Shorten by a million votes, and the Coalition Labor by 1.3 million, behind in the Class War in every state.

Abbott called ‘sexist’ attacks by front- and backbench Liberals on his giant Nubian body-servant Credlin, whom a majority of the populace thought his mistress a year ago, and was so portrayed in an opera, ‘Peta the Great’, in the Wharf Revue this year, sung in German with subtitles to some of Wagner’s more engulfing show tunes. ‘Your indifference turns my bowels to water,’ she sings at one point; and he replies, ‘Make sure you clean up before you leave.’

Abbott’s creepy defence of her on morning television heightened this adulterous impression. Memories of Jim and Juni, John and Ainslie, Ben and Phyllis, Herbert and Margot, Elizabeth and Essex, George and Condaleezza, Tony and Wendi flooded the national mind. A fairly commonplace tendency, so common a new gerund, ‘campaign fucking’, had already stormed the language to describe it, the rumour was nonetheless thought so intriguing to the public that it was denied by two hundred and fifty spin-doctors before breakfast most mornings with a morbid ferocity some, though not this writer, found significant.

Van Onselen, the young fool, exacerbated everything by saying he had witnessed her, Credlin, doing his, Abbott’s, ‘hair and makeup before an interview’, and ‘speaking in his stead at fundraisers’. Piers Akerman, the old fool, said in a headline, ‘Tony’s Choice: Sack Peta, Or Lose Election’. Miranda Devine, a Liberal voter, upbraided his ‘desperately cynical misogyny tactic’ and said she was ‘dismayed’.

Warren Entsch, a Liberal voter, shared his ire. ‘One cabinet minister doesn’t know what the other cabinet minister is doing,’ he raged. ‘Thay are briefing against ministers out of the PMO. We find out about him changing his pet bloody policies when we read it in the paper. Paid parental leave. The defense pay. It makes us look bloody stupid.’

Julie Bishop told PVO she is ‘not sexist’ and ‘got on famously’ with Credlin, though they ‘fought like wild dogs’ most of the time, and, she added, beaming, ‘we will continue to do so.’

The Sunday Telegraph editorial writer, a Liberal voter, said Credlin ‘treats parliamentarians with contempt’. Samantha Maiden, a Liberal voter, said ‘Kevin Andrews should be made our Ambassador to the Holy See’ (he is a Presbyterian), and, in an ‘elegant solution, Peta Credlin given his seat. A big, strapping girl, she might learn to milk cows, like his constituents.’

Miranda Devine praised the CIA for torturing hundreds of innocents after 9/11. ‘Mistakes are made in war,’ she wrote, ‘and lessons are only learned if context is taken into account. This is a lesson we will never learn. Twist Hicks’s testicles! Twist Hicks’s testicles!’ Hicks, she added, fanning her copious, heaving bosom, had ‘never shown any remorse for the crime of which he is guiltless and thus encouraged young Australians to put on suicide belts and blow up pilgrims in multitudes in Mecca. Twist his testicles!’

Calls for her canonisation proceeded apace, and the Pontiff, unsettled by her nude centrefold, thought there ‘must be some mistake’.

And so it went.

The Ellis Laws And The Human Condition

(From Allthumbs)

Ellis in this slim volume manages to sum up the current state of the human condition in 10 chapters with 10 indisputable laws mightier than those handed down to Moses in the days of the burning bush, and Christian Bale decided the voice he used for Batman was suitable for the great Jewish liberator.

Moses was given ten quick bullet points by God etched in stone as the Lord realized that Moses was a boring twat and ten short laws including the doozy of coveting the neighbour’s wife would be about the limit of the attention span of the 12 tribes before the ennui set in and they set off back to Egypt to dancing girls, all-night burger joints and speed dating.

But no, Moses became a thing and embodied the first of Ellis’ law of “power flows to the most boring man in the room”. Yahweh (Yiddish for “yes pain”) kicked himself for missing that one knowing it should have been at the top of his hot ten list and has punished the world ever since for not getting an opening laugh as large as Ellis’.

In less time than you think, this small tome is destined to become the spiritual handbook for a devoted cult who will set about following the Ellis Commandments and enforcing the will of the author by raising ceilings or lowering house prices, eradicating via gene technology the crime of charisma and executing anyone reaching a height beyond six feet two inches (Mickey Rooney tried to enact something similar setting the bar much lower at three feet two when deeply in love With Ava Gardner’s thighs).

I personally have given away my long pursuit of further knowledge, thrown away my Nietzsche, tossed my Montaigne, discarded my Descartes and now live my life by the Laws of Ellis and have promised myself never to move beyond the reality more than five miles wide. If only Thoreau had listened to Ellis and opened up a Sushi bar in Walden Pond.

That this book is not bound in calf skin and embossed in gold with rare jewels studding the covers and the name of Bob Ellis branded in dark ochre letters just goes to show that Penguin has no idea of successful marketing and as a publishing house should be shut down immediately for not recognizing the true worth of this mighty tome.

“Age is therefore an unwilled forgetting of the good, the glad, the loved, by broken contact with those you knew, and knew well when you were young. A faltering memory begins; and then, dementia.”

Wow! Huh? Bless you Bob Ellis.

Toasting John Faulkner

(First published by Independent Australia)

It is worth noting the harm John Faulkner did the Labor Party.

It was his vote that elected Latham. It was his vote – and four others – that elected Rudd. It was his vote, and four others, that re-elected Crean. All these men he preferred to Kim Beazley.

It was he who, although the sole witness, did not dissuade Gillard from challenging Rudd, nor Rudd, initially, from defying her. He it was who, as party elder, failed to stop Rudd from undermining, treasonously, his leader during an election.

It was he who worsened Gillard’s chances in that election by flagging his resignation as Minister of Defence. It was he who failed to help Gillard thereafter, by not joining her Cabinet and worsening the crisis she was in.

It was he who complained the Labor Party was on its last legs and called ‘its various funeral services’ the several centenary events he spoke at, very movingly.

He was a ‘Gloomy Guts’ and a very eloquent one, about the party that for twenty-five years enriched, acclaimed and fed him.

There was a reason, of course, for this.

He never drank alcohol – never ever – and for four years taught profoundly disabled children. This combination put him in a melancholy-misery he is still in. Where Albo, say, would cheer up, see hope and get on with it, John Faulkner was disinclined to. In a deeper part of himself, I think he was lazy, and mistook his laziness for unflinching principle.

For he could have swapped with Plibersek and become Prime Minister, and he chose not to be. He could have been Gillard’s Foreign Minister, and chose not to be. A lazy thinker, he applauded the Afghanistan adventure, and let the Rudd PNG ‘solution’ go through to the keeper.

He was very good in Estimates, interrogating fools. He spoke magnificently at Labor conferences, inspiring True Believers. He was a good friend and advocate, and goal keeper, of Gough Whitlam.

He was a fine Party historian. He was right about Party reform.

But he was wrong when it really counted, supporting duds and undermining heroes. He cost us a Beazley prime ministership, his vote alone.

He should have had a drink, and a walk in the woods with his conscience, and then another drink, and supported Beazley, and been his foreign minister in 2004. He could have been what he was there for, to help, not heckle, and split the Party.

He could have kept the faith, and finished the course, and not been such a doomsayer.

But alas, he drank lemonade.

And so it went.

Certain Housekeeping Matters (136)

The Ellis Laws is now the number three bestseller in its category in Gleebooks.

Will someone out there review it?

I will print the first five that come in.

Also the book that tied with Flanagan’s book in the Prime Minister’s Awards.

The Three Worst Things The Liberals Did Yesterday (136)

Mother Church amazed the world by saying the enforcement of celibacy made priests more likely to rape children. It also implied it had made Tony Abbott cruel. ‘No husky male locked up, and tossing off, in Manly,’ an early draft is said to have said, ‘within clear sight of girls in bikinis, would have failed, in our view, to have become sadistic. And Mr Abbott, in government, has proved this is so. His six years of tossing off, recounted in Battlelines, plainly darkened his plans for humankind.’

Though twelve people had murdered Reza Berati, only two had been arrested and would be hanged under PNG law, a Senate inquiry was told. Two others, white Australians, had escaped to Queensland with Morrison’s assistance, and twenty more, who had injured with blows to the head and gunfire sixty other disgruntled Manus rioters who had just been told by Morrison they would ‘never get out of here’, had not been punished, or demoted, or admonished in any way. Four dead men, plus fifteen or twenty aborted children, were attributable to Morrison’s cyberbullying and his barbarous piratical on-water policies, it was now thought, and he was therefore called by Fran Kelly ‘the Abbott government’s biggest ministerial success.’

Fran Kelly went on holidays, well satisfied with her propaganda subtlety on Breakfast in the months James Carleton, a larger soul, had not restored that programme’s moral balance. Fran, hailed by Credlin as ‘our slyest mole in the national broadcaster’, will be nominated, it is understood, to stand in Sturt when Christopher Pyne, after a likely sexual scandal (involving, perhaps, his two ‘dates’ with James Ashby), is asked by Abbott to stand down, and flounce off into the sunset, and ‘cultivate his garden’.

The Australian dollar fell to 82 cents, where it should have been all along, in those years when we still had export industries to save, and was rapidly heading south, experts murmured, toward 75, and Keating’s ‘banana republic’ warning resounded in the national memory. Hockey was amazed how little money he would have to splash around his party donors, and resolved therefore to up the price of his North Sydney lunches to fifty thousand dollars, including, he smiled, ‘a bottle of ’09 O’Farrell Special Grange’. His deficit, round fifty billion, would be, economists agreed ‘the largest in Australia’s history; but we ain’t seen nothin’ yet’, and he needed to drink heavily against that exigency.

John Faulkner quit politics two days after Bob Ellis, reviewing James Carleton’s Whitlam book, suggested he do so. A teetotalling melancholic so self-absorbed he did not save the Gillard government by joining it, and being, say, Foreign Minister, he mistook, as wowsers do, his own laziness for stainless virtue, and frequently declared the Labor Party, presently ahead in every state, a ‘lost cause’ whose obsequies he darkly declaimed in many a town hall, quaffing lemonade and cursing his destiny. He could have swapped with Plibersek and become Prime Minister, and a very good one, but he was too full of his own moroseness, inertia and stoic arrogance to do it. And so it went. The Liberals owed him a good deal, not least his vote for Latham, not Beazley, in 2003, which appointed the equivalent of Bart Simpson to the Labor Imperium in place of its noblest soul.

Piers Akerman, a Liberal voter, called David Hicks a ‘mere loudmouth’ whom, he said, ‘George Brandis did not even recognise when he shouted at him’, thus proving this man was a ‘worthless terrorist’, curiously no longer imprisoned and soon to be exonerated by the the US Supreme Court.

Piers also cursed Gillian Triggs for, quote, ‘lying’ when she said some women on Christmas Island had attempted suicide. He then said, baffled, she had won a prize for saying it, and Brandis had given it to her.

Hicks, described as a ‘trainee terrorist’ in a captioned photo on the same Telegraph page (he was trained in military procedure by the army of a nation recognised by the UN and represented in that body), will now be able to sue Piers also, for three hundred and fifty thousand dollars.

Morrison said Reza Berati’s relatives would get ‘not a penny; bah, humbug’, in compensation for his murder at twenty-four. ‘We gave not a penny to the Stolen Children, nor will we to this one.’

And so it went.

The Three Worst Things The Liberals Did Yesterday (135)

Brandis called a ‘terrorist’ David Hicks, who accused him, correctly, of ignoring his anguished cries for the seven years he was tortured for a crime that did not exist in the hellhole Guantanamo, lately accurst by the US Senate  as ‘a stain on our history’. Calling him a ‘terrorist’ was a grave libel and Brandis, a sometimes drunken fool, may have to give Hicks, a famed, unprospering author and jobbing hedge-trimmer, three hundred and fifty thousand dollars.

Paul Sheehan, a Liberal voter, called Credlin ‘a plague on Abbott’, perceived as ‘having too much power’ by most of the known world, a successive betrayer of three Liberal leaders, and lately running a ‘presidential-style government’, with herself as co-president. ‘She’s an issue,’ he said, and Abbott, over Christmas, must have done with her.

A Senate committee said Morrison had assisted the escape from capital punishment of about twelve murderers, certainly two white ones, and ordered that he compensate sixty Manus detainees for their injuries in a riot that he, Morrison, provoked by yelling at them, ‘You’ll never, never get out of here.’ Morrison, responding, railed that he was ‘innocent of everything’ and prayed for their souls.

Unemployment hit its highest level in thirteen years, and more and more young people pondered suicide, whoredom, pushing drugs and emigration. This was nothing to do, Abetz said, with Hockey having ended two hundred and fifty thousand auto-manufacture-related jobs with a single sentence last year in the House (‘Piss in the pot, Holden, or get off it’), and Abbott taking twenty billion dollars out of universities, and causing Qantas to sack all its Australians. The eight hundred thousand now jobless, he said, was a ‘necessary stage’ of getting the economy back in action, and Australia reconfiguring itself as ‘the Mexico of Asia’.

Les Murray, who once styled himself ‘the spiritual wing of the Country Party’, attacked his friend Tony Abbott for ‘pulling a swifty’ and giving forty thousand dollars to the ‘useless’ Richard Flanagan, whose ‘pretentious, stupid, ignorant book, The Narrow Road To The Deep North’, was clearly, he said, ‘the work of a simple-minded foreigner, a Tasmanian, I hear tell.’ In other awards, in a category co-judged by the Blessed Gerard Henderson, another unsettling half-winner was a book by Hal Colebatch, in which evil unionists in the 1940s ‘faked the moon landing, and gave Kim Beazley polio’.

Two of Murray’s four co-judges were his craven disciples Jamie Grant and Robert Gray, who meekly applauded his ‘anti-Tasmanian bias’.

In Lima, learning Australia was the ‘worst performing advanced economy on the question of climate change in the history of the world’, Julie Bishop, agawp and sneering prettily, commanded India and China to ‘lift their game’. We pollute more than you, she whispered, you’re not even in the event.

Abbott told the Ukrainian President, Poroshenko, he would sell him uranium ‘just in case he wanted to nuke Russia any time soon, heh heh heh’, and said it might take another year, at forty thousand dollars a day, to uncover who it was, exactly, who committed the ‘atrocity’ over Donetsk, and ‘ten more years at a cheaper rate to bring the culprits to justice.’ Poroshenko, suspecting they were Ukrainians, stared at him frigidly. He spoke better English than Abbott, and wondered for a moment who this creepy fuckwit was.

Pyne wrote to Abbott, begging that the Adelaide ABC studios be spared. ‘It was there, on Playschool, ah learned mah speaking technique,’ he blubbered, ‘and ah dread the human race not speaking lahk me any more.’

And so it went.

The Three Worst Things The Liberals Did Yesterday (134)

Abbott reduced to five dollars the co-payment of some, not all, who went to the doctor, said the doctors could collect it, or not, and abolished, presumably, the Research Fund it was meant to finance and replace the CSIRO with. This followed a fist-fight with Hockey, who wanted to keep the seven dollars, or make it fourteen, and forty-two caucus members who wanted to ditch it altogether, and sustained minor injuries in the Party Room, some inflicted by the sturdy septuagenarian Heffernan with a cattle-prod, and a near-universal response in the nation that called it ‘unfair’; on, especially, the old, who had paid for thirty years taxes that would fund, they thought, ‘free’ health care in their eighties and nineties.

‘We are listening, learning, and improving,’ Abbott said, as his party vote in South Australia plummeted by nine percent, enough to leave him if duplicated nationwide with two seats, both Nationals, ‘watch this space.’ It was thought by some that this reference to the punch-drunk space between his ears was ‘ill-timed and self-threatening’ and brought back memories of his ‘twenty-seven second stare’ and his address to the gobsmacked world leaders on the evil Carbon Tax which some fools wanted to keep going.

The Feinstein Senate Investigation Into Guantanamo Workplace Procedures agreed that keeping a man awake in a stressed, standing position, his wrists chained above his head, for a hundred hours of self-befouling nakedness with no toilet-stop, food or reading matter was ‘torture’ and did nobody any good as a rule. It was further agreed that adding to this physical torment a loud repeated broadcast loop of John Howard’s Anzac Day speeches was ‘too cruel, too cruel, for even Americans to contemplate’, and it had been ‘excluded from consideration by Donald Rumsfeld and Dick Cheney in the earliest hours of discussion.’

Joe Hockey sued Fairfax for alleging, or hinting, that his twenty-four thousand dollar ‘intimate Chinese lunches’ in North Sydney were corrupt, and their ‘Treasurer For Hire’ headline was ‘inordinately provocative’. Joe said he was ‘greatly injured, shunned and avoided, and his reputation has been and will be brought into disrepute, odium, ridicule and contempt.’

His Budget, however, had done much the same thing, his lawyers agreed, and this did not ‘help his case’. It was noted by forensics that after his stomach-stapling he could eat only one-tenth of the Chinese food he used to, and given that his present weekly engorgement now cost twelve thousand dollars per dinner companion, it must argue that his previous personal intake, logically one hundred and twenty thousand dollars worth of Grange and yum-cha per person, was ‘unlikely in even North Sydney, where restaurant meals were admittedly expensive when property developers were shouting, as they usually were, the table.’

Bishop announced that two hundred million would go to ‘socialism, disguised as environmentalism’, and Robb, shirtfronting her, said it would come from Foreign Aid. ‘Third World orphans will starve for the want of it,’ he said gleefully, scoffing antidepressants, and, humming ‘Take A Walk On The Wild Side’, hit the mud-wrestling bars of downtown Lima.

Abbott meanwhile planned to spend thirty million dollars advertising his new co-payment confusion, money which would keep four small theatres going for a thousand years on the interest alone. The AMA said ‘This will cost lives, and send many GPs broke.’ If he had talked to them last April, they growled, they could have sorted something out. But this was ridiculous.

The esteemed Christ-eating beauty Miranda Devine, a Liberal voter, called for Hockey’s ‘extinction, with extreme prejudice’, and his replacement by Morrison, who didn’t mind killing children, or scaring Muslim women into aborting, or cyberbullying young men into burning themselves to death, and ‘would take,’ she smiled, ‘the hard decisions.’

And so it went.

‘This Old Man’: James Carleton’s The Wit Of Whitlam

James Carleton’s small book The Wit of Whitlam is a national blessing and will sell two hundred thousand copies. It has added, and contextualised, and eased into our larger understanding and our rare midsummer delight, more ‘new’ Gough one-liners to the tribal memory in sum than the grand total, still savoured, of Oscar Wilde pensees, epigrams and sallies, eighty percent at least of which might else have been forever lost.

Written in a fortnight, at a rate of three thousand words a day, in a style no better than that of Macauley or Lytton Strachey, it was launched last night by Graham Freudenberg (‘FROO-denberg,’ Gough once said to me, ‘the correct, local, Queensland pronunciation’) who was for forty-eight minutes only slightly, but maddeningly, off-mike. James then seized the instrument and gave on oration so lively and funny that had John Faulkner, who was present, resigned after infarct his Senate seat in its wake, young James might well have succeeded to it by acclamation.

His collaborators included Faulkner, Freudenberg, Latham, Cohen, Mike Rann, Chris Schacht (a relative of the unloved Hitler minister whom Gough called always ‘Herr Schacht’), his mother Suzie Carleton the esteemed hotelier, Meredith Burgmann, myself, and, to a surprising extent, from speeches at raucous book launches and ramshackle patriotic occasions, the blithe ‘old man’ himself.

It surprises even those who knew him well with his breadth and kindness, his lofty, self-piss-taking measure of the years, and made all of us wish we had gone on one of his guided tours to the ancient world. Though not as copious, it reminds us of Boswell’s Johnson and that other grand old man’s magnanimous benignity and theological post-Christian complexity.

His first thought was to be Archbishop of Canterbury; but he made, I think, the right choice.

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Pyne spent thirty million dollars on an ad alleging, mendaciously, that he would ‘pay half’ of the uni fees of the next generation though they would pay, as a rule, seventy or ninety percent of them. The ad behaved, mendaciously, as if his laws were already through, though they had, said Palmer, ‘Buckley’s chance’ of enactment now he had done this.

It was an illegal use of taxpayers’ money, howled Kim Carr, but this, of course, was nothing new for Christopher. He had spent 1352 dollars of it on a hotel room for one afternoon and thirty thousand dollars on a European trip for him and his wife, more than Craig Thomson had spent on whores and firewood in seven years. Abetz concealed these figures as they were ‘not in the national interest’.

Peter ‘Malvolio’ Hartcher, his heart throbbing, swore his beloved, Julie Bishop, had given her rival Credlin ‘a black eye’ by yelling at the full Cabinet that she, not Credlin, would decide what our Climate Change commitment would be and her ‘chaperone’, Robb, could ‘take a walk in the Andes’. For many this foreboded a Spill, and a Bishop challenge to Abbott, who was losing his mind. He had called David Koch ‘Chris’, mistaking him for a dead Tasmanian novelist, and then had to give another one, Richard Flanagan, a prize, though the latter had cursed him on the world media, saying his policies ‘made me ashamed to be an Australian’. ‘This was my narrow road into deep shit,’ Abbott joked afterwards, grinning ashenly, and Flanagan called him a ‘worthless little lying cunt’ while smiling, happily, at the cameras beside him, and promising to give all his prize money to ‘Aborigines Abbott had let down, as he did his pregnant fiancee’, and smiled some more.

The two percent swing in Victoria and then, a week later, the nine percent swing in South Australia panicked the Liberal gauleiters. In all the papers, they begged Abbott to get ‘back on track’. This meant to some that he somehow sell the debt-and-deficit-disaster more vigorously, to some that he say Swan and Palmer were right, there is no debt-and-deficit-disaster, to some that he and Pyne persuade the uni students they had three million, no worries, to spend on their house and their first degree, 2.9 million more than Christopher did, and all would be well.

It was revealed that Abbott had rejected his judges’ recommendation that The Narrow Road To The Deep North, one of the best books ever written, get The Prime Minister’s Award, and had announced on the night, surprising all of them, that A World Of Other People would get half the money. ‘Eighty thousand is too much,’ he is said to have said in an early draft of the speech, ‘for eight years’ work by a writer. It is what a backbencher earns in three months for much more vital work. Next year,’ he is said to have added, ‘I will divide the prize eight ways, giving each lucky “winner” ten thousand dollars, baby-sitters’ wages for three months, which is what they deserve.’

The term ‘Shirtfront’ became Word of the Year. It referred to Abbott’s plan to accuse Putin of mass murder to his face and swear he would be ‘brought to justice’, twisting his nipples for emphasis. What he did instead was was pose beside him co-cuddling koalas. ‘Words’ meanings vary over centuries,’ he explained. ‘In some cases, weeks.’

And so it went.

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John Howard, a Liberal voter, cursed Cate Blanchett for thanking Gough Whitlam for her free university education. Though it was true, he blithered, it was improper of her to say it, since Whitlam’s administration was delineated by historians like himself as ‘a disaster in all directions’.

Abbott announced he was reducing his avowed billions to knocked-up millionairesses, but wouldn’t say who, any more, would get how much, if anything, and what they would be fined if they miscarried. ‘Some Muslim women with five other children,’ he asserted, ‘don’t work, since they are a lazy people, and of course deserve nothing. So do women who resign from their jobs in the seventh month of their pregnancy. Nothing. Why should they do that? We are looking into what the beneficiaries of shotgun marriages deserve if they don’t work until the ninth month or they are fired when their employer finds out that they had, like me, premarital sex, getting off at Redfern. These are difficulties we will iron out, but rest assured, you mark my words, the undeserving will get nothing, and those employed by their fathers or husbands on a quarter of a million a year will get a motzah. This is what the Liberal Party — we few, we happy few — stand for in these latter days.’

A safe conservative seat in South Australia, held by a Liberal Minister who became an Independent Liberal Minister in a Labor Coalition and died suddenly, went to Labor in a by-election landslide. This demonstrated, some said, how displeased that rust-bucket state was by Hockey’s ending forever all car manufacture, and David ‘Free Lunches’ Johnston’s wild libel of Australian submarine designers and builders and his preference for our sinister enemies the Japanese. ‘It seems unlikely,’ Mark Textor averred, ‘that the Liberals will win a federal seat, ever again. The same swing across the nation would leave the Nationals with two seats, and Labor with one hundred and forty-three.’

Hemad Kehazaei, an asylum seeker, died because he took a day to fill out Morrison’s forms, it was revealed today, of septacaemia occasioning brain death, and the turning off of his machinery, his fate a further ‘deterrent’, Morrison said, rejoicing, to those who did not drown on the way here. Asked why he didn’t let Hamid’s parents come to his death-bedside, he said, ‘They might want to stay here. In Australia. The cunning heathen bastards. And that would never do.’

Three Qantas planes had to turn back in twenty four hours after ‘getting into difficulties’ and, in one case, falling out of the sky. This was ‘nothing to do,’ Alan Joyce, a Liberal voter, swore, ‘with me decimating the staff, begorrah, and hiring idiots to replace them. As is well known, airline safety is nothing to do with how many people you employ. It’s to do with the determined focus of the CEO, meself, and getting cheaper repairmen with less experience from overseas. Oi call it “running on empty”; the figures all add up. They do. They do. And all those empty aeroplanes now cost practically nothing to floy.’ In the day the three planes got into difficulties, he earned twenty-one thpusand dollars, and another standing ovation from his Board.

An Ipsos Poll showed Abbott scoring less than Shorten on leadership, trustworthiness, truthfulness, personal cleanliness and ‘being open to new ideas’, though it found he had a clearer vision for Australia’, chillingly, in the same way as Pol Pot had ‘a vision for Cambodia’, one based on his version of the Killing Fields, the slaughter of all jobs in the auto industry, a quarter of a million thus far, and the starving for six months of the unemployed. Andrew Bolt hoped fondly he would ‘regain the people’s respect’ though he was now the least liked leader since Ceaucescu who, backroomers remembered ominously, was placed before a firing squad on Christmas Day.

And so concluded another day of the worst free-elected government since the foundation of the democratic system in Iceland in AD 934.

Lines I Didn’t Use On Outsiders

It was hard to interrupt Maxine, and I was over-prepared. These are some of the lines I omitted.

(1) It’s all in one picture, really. You announce the end of the Age of Entitlement, and then smoke a cigar with your Number 2.

(2) The money Labor overspent went to Australians. The money the Coalition is proposing to overspend, from the biggest deficit in our history, goes mostly to foreigners — fighting ebola, building Chinese installations, searching three oceans for the dead Black Box of MH 370, buying a fighter bomber that can’t yet, apparently, fly. Hundreds of billions spent on foreigners, that never comes back.

(3) So, on the original Hockey Budget calculation we’d reduce the deficit by three billion in three years. But since then we’ve got a war to pay for, and the money we’re not saving by rewarding millionairesses, and persecuting old, sick women. That means the deficit will worsen throughout foreseeable eternity if Hockey stays, and a walloping great GST on everything will come,’under Turnbull, if he does not.

(4) Bishop and Abbott’s current quarrel is how the world will end, by global warming or Christ returning, and how much money we should spend on that eventuality.

(5) Wayne Swan could sue fifty Liberals for saying ‘debt and deficit disaster’. He was the world’s best Treasurer, according to one magazine, and he kept his country out of recession that was engulfing the world. He could sue them each for three hundred and fifty thousand dollars.

(6) They say we mustn’t pass on our debt to our children, but we’re already charging them four times that amount, in university fees.

(7) The tipping point was Abbott lecturing the world’s leaders on his provincial troubles: Here in Dogpatch it isn’t easy.

(8) Abbott is a migrant kid forever slithering up to each new acquaintance and sneakily trying to cobble up friendships with the natives. His first thought always is: How can I bend the truth here? What do they want to hear? His last thought: Oops, where did that go wrong?

(9) Morrison is a good example of Ellis’s First Law, that power flows to the most boring man in the room. He just keeps talking, and never listens, and so gets his way.

(10) Abbott’s not great at what we scriptwriters call ‘the emotional line’. He calls Putin a mass murderer of innocent Australians who must be ‘brought to justice’, then cuddles koalas with him. He praises the Japanese for the ‘skill, and honour’ with which they sank the Manly Ferry and beheaded Australians in Sandarkan. He claims that, before the white man came, there was ‘nothing here’. He’s a dunce when it comes to diplomacy, and the whole world is shocked at what a schmuk, in close verbal combat, he is. Shorten is a million votes ahead of him as preferred Prime Minister because he has no idea what to say to foreign visitors and calls ISIL a ‘death cult’ in front of a bleeding, redemptive, crucified Christ, amazing an audience of Buddhists, Hindus and Muslims who do not believe in blood sacrifice and eating the living flesh of the God on Sundays and drinking, to ISIL’s revulsion, his blood.

The Three Worst Things The Liberal Did Yesterday (131)

Abbott abandoned the pregnant billionairesses and swore that a sacked pregnant waitress would get nothing, and a two-day-a-week pregnant waitress on three hundred dollars a week and pregnancy leave would get seven thousand dollars, no more, for her baby. ‘All babies are born equal,’ he said, ‘but some are more equal than others. This principle I have campaigned on, and will put my sad, battered head in the noose for.’ His dumfound colleagues applauded as the rope tightened.

Galaxy showed Labor 1.3 milion votes ahead of the Coalition, Abbott the least liked Prime Minister, at this early stage, in world history; Ceaucescu, it was thought, might have been less liked on his last Christmas Day but not by much; and Newman, now less liked than Caligula, Galaxy revealed, now losing his own seat by a landslide.

It was wondered why this had happened. Failure to sell bad policies was thought to be the most of it, policies like starving the unemployed if they did not accept work as whores in legal brothels, or slit the throats of small cows in hal-al butcher shops, or sign up as paid guinea pigs in leprosy experiments; and charging the old for getting sick though their taxes for forty years had funded, they thought, free treatment. It was thought as well that Abbott’s pregnancy-funding obsession derived from the enforced adoption of his girlfriend Kathy’s child, and her subsequent unfunded pregnancy and childbirth, and the baby she raised on her own while he hid in a seminary. Better protect such women from bastards like himself, he may have thought, or not, men who paid not a penny in paternity dues and went off on a mission to wear a dress and be a priest, tossing off from time to time, as he reveals in Battlelines, nostalgically.

Morrison awarded himself the power to decide who comes here, and the circumstances in which they come. This was in response to President Joko doing pretty much the same thing, and threatening war if Morrison sent any of his orange boats back to Indonesia, a no-go zone hereinafter. This left Morrison only with Nauru, which the UN had cursed, with PNG, where Australians were wanted for murder, with Sri Lanka, which killed returning refugees, and with Cambodia, which whored and enslaved them.

His decision therefore was to let them all into Australia and treat them like convicts, workers on cheap wages in country towns. This alerted the people smugglers to the ‘New Deal’ he was offering their customers, who queued up in thousands, waving banknotes joyfully, for a new generation of leaky boats which S&M had sworn not to send back any more, sinuously declaring there were ‘no more boats coming, the problem is solved, I solved it, I did it, you are permitted to praise me, speak up’, though the seas were swarming with a new armada of them. The level of his self-deception versus the number and intensity of his deliberate fabrications was hard for experts to assess. He went to church, and spoke in tongues, moodily, at great length, covering his face with his hands. Some of his fellow parishioners began to think him insane. Some had made this judgment years ago.

Children waited in cages for the day of their ‘liberation’ into lifelong suspense. Not in a hundred years, he swore, with emphasis, in tongues, and then in English, would they get Australian citizenship, or permission to visit their relatives overseas. This he had sworn. This was his decision, his decree, his command.

Some Liberals, impressed, decided he should be Prime Minister. One Labor Premier (or so it was rumoured) decided to put him in gaol.

And so it went.

The Three Worst Things The Liberals Did Yesterday (130)

Bishop and Abbott began to fight like dogs over whether Christ or Global Warming would end the earth and what they should do about it. Hockey blamed ‘ratbags’ in the Liberal back bench for the hourly swelling rumours that he would soon be replaced by Turnbull, who could add. Josh Frydenberg told Alberici that Hockey giving away the Mining Tax, the Carbon Tax, the Paid Parental Leave, two hundred thousand jobs in and around the car manufacturing industry and ten billion dollars to the Reserve Bank had had ‘no effect’ on the Budget bottom line; this was now called the ‘Joe Hole’, and involved the biggest deficit in our history. Joe said he was ‘proud of my record’, which was rated by economists as the worst since the South Sea Bubble in the eighteenth century, ‘a bubble to which,’ they added sadly, ‘he bears, alas, an unfortunate physical resemblance.’

People smugglers rejoiced to hear that Morrison had given them, in their words, ‘a business model to drown for.’ ‘If you get on my boat,’ the smugglers bellowed, ‘my partner Scott will give you a job in a country town, three years’ residence, school for your children, free health care, and a chance to become Australians under an imminent, certain Shorten government in 2016.’ Refugees flocked to the smugglers’ shopfronts throughout Indonesia, a country whose President, Joko, forbade Scott Morrison’s orange boats to invade on pain of war, and paid up big, in tens of thousands, believing their dreams were now reality.

Andrew Bolt, a Liberal voter, said Hockey must go, and cursed the obvious alternative, Turnbull, for his ‘tin ear for politics, and his inability to say in ten cheap words what he talks around in a hundred’, and his vile professional connections with Wrans and Whitlams, and the arts, and civilised living, and his war on Margaret Thatcher,, preferring… Julie Bishop, and a cunning job-swap chess-move that made Hockey… Foreign Minister. What a good idea that was. Ticks all the boxes. Ticks all the boxes. Of course it does. But Bishop, he suddenly remembered, had been a ‘disaster’ as Shadow Treasurer and had asked to be relieved of that onerous post after confessing her innumeracy, and there had never been a successful female Treasurer thus far in all human history, so maybe it had better be…and here he gulped…Scott Morrison. He had, after all, started up the boats again, what a good man, in what some called ‘the own-goal of the present millennium’.

Bolt thought about this. He poured himself a breakfast scotch, and considered rewriting his copy; doing a piece instead in praise, perhaps, of President Voervoerd, or Vidkund Quisling, or Pierre Laval, or the ‘much misunderstood’ Heinrich Himmler, or the gorgeous Papist beauty he called ‘the Blessed Miranda Devine’ and how soon the present loathesome socialist Pope should consider canonising her. Then he thought, the hell with it, and poured another scotch. Go with it as it is. Palestinian Joe for Foreign Minister. Watch him sort out Netanyahu. Tell Obama where to get off. This job was getting easier and easier.

And so it went.

Certain Housekeeping Matters (135)

James Munro has failed to say what job he works in for two days and is banned for life. He is a political staffer, probably, or an aasociate of IPA or Gerard Henderson.

Look on his works, ye mighty, and despair.

A Lost Generation

(First published by Independent Australia)

It is easy to understand why Palmer, Lazarus, Wang and Muir, though with great misgivings, voted for Morrison’s ‘compromise’ last night. They feared that children and adolescents, already shattered and suicidal, would do away with themselves if they did not.

But they created thereby a new ‘lost generation’ of second-class fugitive non-Australians, like the Dunera Boys of the war years, or the Jews becalmed in boats near British Palestine in 1947.

They cannot, as far as I understand it, leave, for three years, a particular country area, to seek work or go to school. They cannot be joined by their missing parents, uncles, aunts or cousins from the ‘old country’. They cannot go to the old country themselves, to visit a dying grandfather. They can never be Australians, and may be in 2017 sent home to torture in Sri Lanka or beheading in Afghanistan if Morrison, or his successor, deems this voyage an ‘acceptable risk’, as Amanda Vanstone did when she sent back my friends the Bakhtiyaris — six children, two parents, a baby — to death by means as yet unknown in Kabul, or thereabouts.

A TPV is like Death Row. You know your worst fear may come to pass in three years’ time. You hope it will not. You may be, in 2018, in a country that sees you as a pariah, a deserter, a traitor, an outcast, and will not let you work, or eat, and arrests and gaols and tortures you if you beg, or whore yourself, or sell drugs to survive.

Why then would you learn English, or pursue your studies, or make friends, or woo a girl you might make your wife in five years time? You are on Death Row, and your fate is uncertain.
You might hope for a better government, or a kinder Minister, but how are you to know if time will bring you that benison, that relief? How will you not curse your father for putting you, and your sisters, in this dreadful Black Hole of modern history?

It is worth noting, I think, how frantic Morrison lately became, and how much he gave up, to achieve this partial ‘victory’. The new Indonesian president threatened war if he pushed back any boats in his direction. The United Nations accused him of unusual cruelty to children. A new Andrews government may prosecute him for cyberbullying two young Geelong men into burning themselves to death, one unsuccessfully. History will call him, a pirate, kidnapper, abuser of children, and tongue-speaking madman of a type one sees in East African tyrannies, accurst by posterity.

And, more importantly, these children are now available for interview by Four Corners, and so are their parents; and, though some will be too scared to reveal their agonies to an interested public, some Hazaras, perhaps, from Kandahar doomed to die there if they are sent back, may recount their sufferings, beatings, heat-strokes, rapes and illnesses on Christmas Island, face to face to the cameras.

It is probable Morrison cannot survive unimprisoned the calendar year 2015. But it is just possible he will be Prime Minister soon. So narrowly do the cards fall, and so waywardly do the winds blow, that either is a hovering likelihood in these, the times we are in.

What an awful chapter we are living through.

And how lucky we are to have the plain mouth of Jacqui Lambie to remind us, in her rough, kind way, of what it is we feel, and believe.

The Three Worst Things The Liberals Did Yesterday (129)

Simon Benson, a Liberal propagandist, under a headline saying ‘Joe’s On The Nose’, said for Team Abbott, ‘the entire year has been a debacle’ and the backbench were ‘baying for Turnbull’, who, unlike Joe (he noted) could add. Tony Abbott, a Liberal propagandist, said Shorten was ‘backstabbing the Budget’ and swore to Leigh Sales he would not resign any time soon, but darkly hinted he would reshuffle Joe next year, and drown David Johnston mayhap in a butt of Grange.

Mark Kenny, a former Abbott bromance, spoke of ‘woeful September national accounts’ and ‘nationwide feedback’ that went to ‘trust, broken promises and harebrained policy solutions to un-shared problems’, and urged Hockey and Abbott to ‘shift the debate from the things it cannot do, to the things it can, and should.’

Julie Bishop announced that Abbott could go fuck himself and she would commit us to policies ‘green as Kermit’ in Lima next week if she felt like it. Abbott’s countervailing theories of ‘global warming by the earth burning after Christ’s war with Satan at Armageddon in 2032,’ she said, ‘were poor science, in my considered view’, in this, ‘the hottest year since the Ice Age’.

Some abused and tortured Christmas Island kids were promised Christmas in Queensland, where their fathers, on slave wages, would work that day in jobs white Christians disliked, like slaughtering pregnant sows and assisting old men to the outdoor toilet and pulling down their trousers. Ricky Muir, near tears, said voting them out of this noisome tropical hellhole was for him a choice, an ugly, desolate, shaming choice of ‘bad, instead of worse’.

It was thought these children would never leave the town they were imprisoned in, or visit, in ‘the old country’, their dying grandfathers or the mother they left behind in political prison. It was assumed as well that Four Corners would not be allowed anywhere near them, and the Commonwealth Police would escort them to school while crowds of imported bigots, urged on by George Brandis, would remind them that ‘thy mother mated with a camel’ and similar pleasantries, until they ‘settled in’.

Amazing the known world, Morrison said letting people live and work here would stop other people wanting to come here. ‘This will stop the boat people trade forever,’ he railed on Parliament lawn. ‘We have removed the incentive. By allowing them to work, earn money, meet wives, and marry them, and have children here, and build homes in pleasant country towns, we will deprive forever the people smugglers of a product to sell.’ Asked why he was uttering such nonsense, he whispered, in private, ‘Yoko won’t let us take them back to Indonesia, and they’re suiciding on Christmas Island and being raped on Nauru, so we’re sending them to Longreach, to work in slaughterhouses. Out of sight, out of mind.’ Asked what he would do when more boats came in their hundreds, he said, very softly, ‘We’ll let them in. There’s nowhere else to put them. We’ll guide them up the Diamantina, and not tell anybody they’ve arrived.’ He then fell to speaking in tongues, and rolling his eyes. ‘This,’ cried several ragged backbenchers, ‘is our next Prime Minister.’

And so it went.

The Three Worst Things The Liberals Did Yesterday (128)

Paul Sheehan, a Liberal voter, spoke of the ‘cold loathing’ Hockey’s fool Budget had stirred in his colleagues, and how the government’s ‘retreat from Moscow’ must begin soon, with the quenching of the co-payment and its pendant ‘research fund’, a twenty billion dollar expenditure on foreign climate change deniers. Andrew Bolt, a Liberal propagandist, cursed Clive Palmer for saying all Murdoch’s papers were ‘controlled by Rupert Murdoch’, who gave them, Clive said, ‘instructions by Skype.’ This was ‘just freaky’, said Bolt, an ‘unhinged conspiracy theory’. Laura Tingle, an objective commentator, said the government was ‘all blustered out’, and should give up all talk of surplus, and merely ‘stop the deficit (already the worst in our history) blowing out too much.’

Julie Bishop ‘went bananas’ after finding Andrew Robb was to ‘chaperone’ her in New York, and make sure that while there she obediently served Abbott’s high Christly purpose of ending the world this century. She felt that, though a woman, she could herself decide what our foreign policy should be, and Abbott, chuckling, said, ‘Sure you can, doll, sure you can’; in another part of the steam-room another woman, Credlin, laughed out loud. Julie Bishop then said she had ‘not gone bananas’, but merely, robustly, discussed the ways her leader might go fuck himself.

Pyne introduced a new higher education bill that funds priests’ training, breaches the separation of church and state, and with money taken away from secular students encourages pederasty ‘of the sort one saw in Devil’s Playgound, the miniseries, my inspiration’. Bob Day, of the DLP, and Tony Abbott, formerly of the DLP, acclaimed this new expensive way of corrupting the young. ‘It takes me back,’ said Abbott, ‘to page 68 of my official biography, where seduction, and worse, of younger students shook my faith for a time, until I realised that’s what taxpayers’ funds are for, not public transport, which is an abomination.’

Abbott, looking calm, focussed and pleasantly mad, told the girlish, smiling Leigh Sales ‘we cannot pass on our debts to our children, but we can give them a huge HECS debt eight times as great as we ever had, which will dog them for forty years. This is not our debt, which is twenty thousand dollars per man, woman and child, or will be in ten years’ time, it is their debt, which is, after interest, two hundred and twenty thousand dollars, and seven hundred times the amount that Christopher paid for his degree.’

Morrison got his TPV legislation through the Senate. This meant a child now ten who, since the age of eight and a half, had been in grimy, sorrowing, harassed, undereducated internment on Christmas Island, could now live with his parents in a Queensland town, and in three years’ time, at the age of thirteen, might be sent back into misery and beggary in Sri Lanka for eighty years or be killed there by street violence while still in his teens, after Morrison, of all people, decided it was ‘safe to do so’; or to seek work, perhaps, as a child whore, along lines of local popular practice much praised in former times by Donald Friend, or tortured to death in prison like his uncle. This new legislation was hailed by Michaelia Cash as being ‘so horrible a punishment that no boat person will ever come here again’, in a baffling piece of logic that gave certain modern philosophers cause to think a straitjacket might be needed to assist her, urgently, out of public life.

Daniel Andrews appointed nine female Ministers, the greatest number in world history, in contrast with Abbott’s one, the smallest number on the planet in this century. Abbott purposed not to give him any money at all for public transport, which he called in his book ‘an abomination’.

David Johnston was caught drinking one hundred and twenty-dollar bottles of wine at taxpayers’ expense while cutting soldiers’ pay and forbidding them Christmas leave.

And so concluded another day in the life of the worst free-elected government in world history since democracy’s first foundation in Iceland in AD 924.

The Three Worst Things The Liberals Did Yesterday (127)

The feline class warrior Christopher Pyne, his calm face a tribute to Aspergers and Nivea cream, claimed his massacre in the Senate had not really happened, and his ‘friend’ Glenn Lazarus, whom he had never met, would ‘come round’ if he continued sending him cards, flowers and mint chocolates through Christmas and New Year. Lazarus considered an AVO, and the worst economic figures in many, many years, for the three months after the Hockey ‘Joe Hole’ Budget, famed world-wide for its unfairness, underlined, like Andrews’ victory, the trouble the Abbott Cult were presently in. Kool-Aid jokes abounded, an ABC boat-people documentary showed Morrison to be the worst on-water monster since Blackbeard, and it was thought that Turnbull might seize power by Friday morning.

New figures showed Australia, pretty much, in recession for the first time in twenty-five years. Hockey blamed Labor for this though it was he who by ending car manufacturing had scared the bejesus out of a quarter of a million people who weren’t buying things any more. He said Labor should ‘get on board’ with his plans to pass on our debts to the next generation of uni students, old women going to the doctor, the schoookids and soldiers’ orphans who wouldn’t get money any more, and soldiers who would be paid less hereinafter for dying for their country.

The traitor David Johnston proved to be lavishly wining and dining our ‘traditional beheaders’ the Japanese in the hope that they would take billions from us, and spend them in Japan, for building our submarines. It amazed the nation that he was bribing them, not they him. He seemed, in some ways, as crazy as Morrison, aka S&M, though this is a big call.

Morrison had kidnapped a lot of children, and proposed to let them out of prison if their parents never became citizens, and could never visit their extended families overseas, but await in growing panic their expulsion from Australia for forty or fifty years, or, in the case of the children, ninety or a hundred years. Though this was technically slavery, and frowned on by the United Nations, an influential body, Morrison was proud of it, he said, as it stopped ‘thousands drowning’ and sent them more suitably home to torture, poverty and execution in Sri Lanka. Fran Kelly, a Liberal voter, said this was ‘better than nothing’, though she found ‘using children as pawns’ distasteful. Morrison in his interview babbled uninterrupted his usual swag of hyperactive untruths and proved thus Ellis’s First Law: ‘Power flows to the most boring man in the room.’ It seemed likely the children would remain in prison, become frantic and attempt to kill themselves, a superior outcome in S&M’s considered, tongue-speaking view.

The esteemed Christ-eating beauty Miranda Devine, a Liberal voter, found ‘nauseating’ Shorten’s view that soldiers’ pay should rise with inflation. The ‘Choirboy’, Peter Van Onselen, a Liberal propagandist, said Abbott was no longer liked or respected and would go the way Keating, similarly disliked and disrespected, went in 1996. Janet Albrechtsen, the lovely long-necked fascist whom Rhys Muldoon has been for a decade keen to fuck, said a white policeman was right to kill, in Ferguson, an unarmed black youth and it was laughable to say there was ‘racism in America’.

Joe Hockey admitted killing the auto industry in order to get a trade deal with the auto-exporting Japanese. This was his equivalent of the pig iron Bob Menzies sold our ‘traditional beheaders’ to build guns and submarines they then killed Australians with. A thick Arab Maronite under-educated in the ways of his new country, he did not realise that this was regarded by two million Australians over seventy-five as treason.

And so it went.

Resignation Matters

(First published by Independent Australia)

Shorten is a million votes ahead of Abbott as preferred Prime Minister, Labor 1.5 million votes ahead of the Coalition as preferred federal government, and, in the Westminster system, there would normally be resignations by now.

Pyne, for instance, failed to get his university revolution through; and, last night, said he was ‘good friends’ with Lazarus, a man who thinks of him as a perverted stalker. Morrison was shown to have ordered a delay for six hours of the disembarkation of heat-stressed asylum-seekers, endangering some children’s lives, till Australia Day darkened into night and their arrival could occur in secret. This is a crime and he should stand down till it is investigated by a royal commission, or his punishment determined by the federal police.

David Johnston committed treason by casting doubt on the ability of our navy, and should be stood down pending his trial for what, in other decades, was a capital crime.

Abbott, also, threatened to fine a new Premier, Andrews, three billion dollars if he did not go back on a promise which elected him on Saturday. This is a resignation matter. Yet these kooks behave as if nothing out of the ordinary were happening, that this ‘patient, disciplined government’ were going about their business in a ‘calm and orderly way’.

It is, in fact, a strikingly aberrant government showing signs of being the worst in our history. A thousand things they have done wrong could be listed by any attentive student. These include our shaming at APEC, and the worst deficit in our history.

Some of the signs of Jonestown, or the Branch Davidian burning itself to death in Waco, Texas, are already apparent. Finding their mutilation of the ABC opposed by eighty percent of the people, they cut its money by half a billion dollars, after promising no change to it. After killing car manufacture in this country, they then announced they were killing submarine manufacture, and awarding it, smashing a whole state’s economy, to our former loathed war foe, Japan. After opposing the invention of Medicare, and abolishing it once, they are now keen to make it unaffordable for old women who depend on it; old women who have been, till now, their most reliable voters.

It is hard to see why they are behaving so madly. It may be that the party of Menzies, Fraser, Peacock, Hamer, Hewson and Chaney is now nursing and rearing a crazy, Catholic, fundamentalist cuckoo. It may be that the autocratic rule of Credlin (Meddlin’ Credlin, Queen of the Kremlin, as she is sometimes known) is nearing its end, and Malcolm Turnbull will soon be in charge again, and patient, calm civility restored to an aghast, amazed and shattered nation.

It certainly cannot last. This cult-like denial of reality and meaningless, hairy-goat expeditions (a billion will be spent on seeking MH370 and it is hard to imagine why) may stir the Governor-General to initiate, on his own bat, a Double Dissolution. The Senate, dismayed by our national ruin, may refuse Supply. Abbott, beset by enemies and half mad anyway, may advise an election and immolate his enemies along with himself.

It is hard to see it lasting another two years. It has the smell of Bjelke Petersen, and the Moonlight State, about it. Masters, Fitzgerald and Dempster will be coming soon, or their equivalent, and the story will soon, very soon, be over.

The Three Worst Things The Liberals Did Yesterday (126)

Newspoll showed Shorten preferred as Prime Minister by a million more voters than Abbott and two and a half million ‘uncommitted’ on that question and the Coalition losing forty-five seats including, probably, Pyne’s. In a ‘marathon’ press conference, Abbott admitted breaking his promise not to mutilate the ABC or SBS and urged Dan Andrews to break his promise on the East-West Link Road one and a half days after he was elected, swearing that if he didn’t, he wouldn’t get the three billion set aside for Victorian ‘infrastructure’; that he would take his bat and ball and go home. Abbott, Battlelines revealed, wanted public transport abolished, and Andrews wanted to keep and extend it, and Abbott was now feral on this ‘core principle’ of putting more and more polluting autos on more and more roads and strangling thereby urban civilisation.

Kevin Andrews, no relation, a Liberal voter, cursed Napthine as ‘Labor-lite’ and urged more fascist policies on his ruined party, calling this ‘renewal’. Bill Leak, a Liberal voter, in a cartoon showed an ugly Dan Andrews as a lumbering puppet of evil unions.

Peter Costello, a Liberal voter, said Shorten was wrong to have said Labor had ‘won’ on Saturday night. This, he said, was ‘spin’, and it was unprecedented in world history that a man who was ‘not running’ should say such a thing, though Antony Green, another non-contestant, had made similar predictions on similar election nights, perhaps a hundred times.

David Meers, a Liberal voter, said Abbott was ‘on the front foot’ after admitting his lies for forty-five minutes, calling his worst week in fifty-seven years merely ‘ragged’ and his total policy failure ‘just atmospherics’. The Daily Telegraph editorial praised his ‘achievements: stopping the boats, though one turned up last week, and justified the cuts to the ABC (one half of what was spent on APEC and one quarter of what has been fruitlessly thus far spent searching three oceans for MH 370) as brought on by the ‘unexpected’ blowing-out of the Swan deficit estimate of eighteen billion to forty-eight billion though Swan’s actual estimate was twenty-eight billion and ten billion of the rest was what Hockey gave, astonishingly, to the Reserve Bank who didn’t want it. ‘The Treasurer clearly understands the numbers,’ it added, ‘but lacks ability and energy.’ He should ‘drive home the issues of debt and deficit,’ it went on, ‘then do everything possible to address them’, as if he had not been doing this for two years, incompetently.

This would not include further cuts, Abbott said, though the price of iron had gone down by a third.

Commentators kept saying Napthine’s defeat after one term was highly unusual, though Deakin, Fisher, Lang, Scullin, Menzies, Cain, Lewis, Dunstan, Steele Hall, MacMahon, Tonkin, Tonkin, Kirner, Lawrence, Fahey, Kerin, Rudd, Gillard, Baillieu, O’Farrell, and, effectively, Whitlam (two terms over two years and eleven months) were similarly truncated. It is amazing these people are allowed to lecture us on politics at all.

Abbott called ‘blackmail’ what Lambie was up to — that is, wanting a fair wage for soldiers risking death for their country, Australia — and what Leyonhjelm was wanting, a conscience vote which Abbott’s sister wanted too, on gay marriage. He was visibly up against it, and likely to be overthrown in a couple of months; a couple of days, perhaps. A mesothelioma sufferer sued the government for exposing him to Mr Fluffy, meaning Julie Bishop could no longer be a candidate for the Prime Ministership. She had defended James Hardie for years, and famously said to a similar sufferer, ‘Just because you’re dying doesn’t mean you can get to the head of the queue.’ This unforgiveable utterance meant, surely, that Turnbull would be Prime Minister by Australia Day.

And so it went.

The Three Worst Things The Liberals Did Yesterday (125)

Experts reckoned we would soon be in a deficit five billion dollars worse than Swan’s, and not back in surplus for fifteen or twenty years. The price of iron plummeted, and Hockey put his fat face in his fat hands. Abbott in a phone call said Andrews couldn’t have three billion for his infrastructure, it had to be Napthine’s infrastructure, the East-West or nothing. Napthine had quit, and it seemed his partners, the Nationals, might not be the Liberals’ partners any more, might even lose party status, and the staff and wages that come with it.

Abbott in a press conference acclaimed his own ‘solid year in government’ and spoke wistfully of ‘Plan B’, a much needed commodity now the co-payment, the soldiers’ reduced wages, the two hundred thousand dollar uni degrees and the Billionairesses’ Baby Bonus looked doomed in the Senate, or ‘Lambie-land’ as it was lately known.

Julie Bishop, lying, said the Coalition was ‘way ahead in New South Wales’, though Ipsos last week showed Labor, on 49, winning narrowly in that state, with a swing of 12 percent. Barnaby Joyce, beetroot-faced and plainly near infarct, talked of ‘the financial calamity we were left with’ an hour after Clive Palmer, in the Press Club, noted that Australia’s debt was the third lowest in the OECD and, at a mere 27 billion when Labor left office, less than 2.5 percent of its annual tax takings.

Asked by Burke if he was seriously asking Andrews to break an election promise on the Monday after an election, Abbott said, ‘Well, Bill Shorten said he should’, and the mortified faces behind him, gobsmacked by this lie, showed his time in high office was limited. Asked by Shorten if he would give back the money he was thieving from our soldiers, Abbott said they would die more gladly for a country in surplus. He added there was no money to pay any more than he was allotting to these heroes, but a billion and a half to spend looking in three oceans for skerricks of MH 370.

Pregnant women Morrison was hurrying off to give midsummer birth in hot, insanitary, grimy, violent Nauru would not get off the bus and onto the plane in Darwin, preferring to give birth somewhere healthier, and, flanked by their lawyers, charged Morrison with pointlessly endangering their unborn. But that was the point, Morrison’s people said, the tipping point, the crucial difference, that babies born in Darwin not Nauru might be legally Australian, and Morrison’s description of them as ‘unauthorised vaginal arrivals’ might not stand up in court. So they had to be born somewhere else. No mention of this occurred in any newspaper, but the ABC ran Hanson-Young’s press conference, and her moving defence of these innocent, suffering young women.

PVO with a straight face claimed Abbott ‘won’ this afternoon’s Question Time, which many rated his most humiliating experience since the day it was revealed his long-yearned-for bastard son was the progeny not of himself but his cuckolder, and gave Abbott a ‘silver medal’ and Shorten a ‘wooden spoon’. This confirmed what some suspected, that Murdoch had lately lost all connection with reality, and was hounding his mind-slaves, in the manner of a cult leader, into a Kool Aid-style mass intellectual suicide before he sacked the lot of them and his Board sacked him.

Lenore Taylor, an objective commentator, said Abbott had ‘snookered himself… Every way he turns, there is a barrier he placed there himself.’

A Morgan Poll showed Labor ahead in every state: 62.5 percent in Tasmania, 59.5 in South Australia, 56 in Victoria, 52 in WA, 51.5 in NSW and 50.5 in Queensland.

And so it went.

How To Fix Things

Nationalise iron, dig it up and stack it up until its price increases.

Fine Gina Rinehart seventeen billion dollars.

Reduce the GST to 9 percent, and put a 3 percent GST on food, and 15 percent on alcoholic drink.

Allow only five Coles and five Woolworths in any major city and none in country towns.

Legislate to reduce all rents on all small business premises by one third.

Make it compulsory that all buses have a conductor, all long-distance trains one more, all ferries and light-rail one more, all parking stations one young man at the boom gate round the clock, and all cities between fifty and two hundred traffic policemen.

Legislate that no parking station charges more than twenty dollars a day.

Introduce a form of National Service in which, for a year, all teenagers look after old women in their homes, or care for the disabled children of parents who need a six week rest.

Replace the Billionairesses’ Baby Bonus with a fund that gives thirty-five thousand dollars to each mother, and forty thousand to each mother with twins.

Pay ten thousand under-25s to teach a musical instrument to children, or teach them to sing, or dance. Attach them to Primary Schools.

Buy a quarter of Queensland’s farming land, and give it to 100,000 Hazaras in small holdings, and tax their profits at 50 percent.

Cancel negative gearing. Ban Chinese from buying Australian houses, flats, or farms.

Buy a quarter interest in Qantas, and make sure two thirds of its staff are Australians.

Restore the Milk Marketing Board.

Legalise marihuana, and put a 20 percent GST on it.

Bribe Holden to stay here and build, if it can, a solar car in Adelaide.

Legislate that all Australian submaries and warships are built in Adelaide.

By these means we would double, probably, the number of young people working, and supporting the older generations now in their eighties and nineties. Part of the trick is Hazaras, who have seven or ten children keen to work, and will supply the economy with more builders, meatworkers, language teachers and Test cricketers.

Think about it.