Sunday, February 16, 2014

An Overdue Political Rant

I’m afraid I can’t hold back this political rant any longer. Readers from overseas may not get much out of it. Although perhaps you are having a similar experience in your own country? I have a feeling Canadians might be going through something similar at the moment. If you believe you have an arrogant, heartless, retrograde government that would like nothing more than to bring back the good ole fifties, read on.

I can’t remember when Australia ever had such an arrogant, supercilious, self-righteous bunch of people in charge of the country. Paul Keating (former prime minister) was an arrogant bugger, but at least he was funny and intelligent with it. Peter Costello (former treasurer) was high up there in the arrogance stakes. Fortunately he never made it to PM. But in this government! What a team! Just look at them! Scott Morrison (Minister for Immigration and Border Protection), Julie Bishop (Minister for Foreign Affairs), Christopher Pyne (Minister for Education), Greg Hunt (Minister for the Environment), George Brandis (Attorney General)… Are there more you would like to add? Can we do no better than this?

Interestingly, compared to this sorry collection, Tony Abbott (Prime Minister) and Joe Hockey (Treasurer) seem almost human and almost reasonable. Perhaps that is Abbott’s strategy. Having these clowns in his cabinet makes him look almost good. But then, he did appoint them (or so he would have us believe). I do wonder how much in control of these people he actually is. Nevertheless, they make our climate-change denying, homophobic, misogynistic Prime Minister appear almost competent in comparison. And Joe seems to ‘mean well’.

Then there is poor Malcolm Turnbull (Minister for Communications) standing more or less on the sidelines, looking slightly bemused by it all. If he had been leader, even I might have been tempted to vote for the Liberal-National Party coalition. And we have Barnaby Joyce (Minister for Agriculture) battling against his own government, for the most part. I may not agree with his political ideology, but at least he seems to want to do something worthwhile—and he also has a sense of humour. And, finally, there is poor Ian MacFarlane (Minister for Industry)… Industry? What industry?

I blame the Labor Party for this. I don’t think many people in this country really wanted to see these people in power. However, the Labor Party pulled off such an astonishing feat of very public self-destruction during its last term in office that people rightly chose not to vote for it. Who to vote for then? Well, perhaps Abbott and his team might not be too bad. They couldn’t be worse, surely? Well, I think now we are beginning to find out.

And now we have the Opposition, sitting there in Parliament, directionless, weak, not knowing which way to turn. Bill Shorten (Opposition Leader) looks clueless and idea-less, with nothing more than a few hackneyed clichés and tired tactics to fall back on.

How did we get here? Well, Kevin?

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