Archive | June, 2013

The Arsonist of Democracy and Decency

19 Jun

This is the truth. It is not longer about who has the favoured policies, but about a man using every dirty tactic because he didn’t win an election. It is what he has done in the past when he’s lost any vote, as it is well known from his university days. He is a bully, a thug, a liar and a person too disreputable to ever become the leader of a country.

Denise Allen

Australians, last week, watched in despair (at least I hope they did) as the conservative right wing side of politics reached depths of ugliness never before seen in Australian politics.
That menu, Sattler and Devine with their obsession about female body parts and sexuality, (I’m surprised Bernardi hasn’t thrown in a barb or two) disgraced not only themselves, but the world’s impression of us as a people.
Robust political verbal battles are not something new.
But this new gutter level ugliness that has pervaded our political discourse from the day the Independents gave the nod to Julia Gillard to take the reins of Government, is.
Abbott lit the fire, fanned the flames, became the gale that turned it into an inferno, sat back and watched it rage – and now – like many arsonists, has jumped on the fire truck to be one of the heroes to put it out.

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War on Women: The Reality

18 Jun

One Voice In The Crowd

In his book War on Women, Brian Vallee says it is not the war on terror, the Iraq war or the war in Afghanistan, but the war on women which is most often ignored or distorted by the media. How true.

Over the past three years, we have seen a sustained series of attacks on a political leader such as Australia has never before witnessed. The attacks on Prime Minister Julia Gillard are very personal and most often sexual in nature and if you think this has nothing to do with gender, think again.

When Tony Abbott first appeared in front of signs describing Julia Gillard as a ” witch” and a ” bitch” I knew the war on women had become very public and very dangerous.


Public because we still don’t like to admit how pervasive sexism, abuse and violence against women in Australia really is. Mostly confined…

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Why the Menu Matters

13 Jun

The Conscience Vote

By now, pretty much everyone’s seen, or at least heard about, that menu, produced for a fundraising dinner held for Liberal National Party member Mal Brough. The guest of honour was Shadow Treasurer Joe Hockey, lending a hand in the effort to oust Independent Peter Slipper from his seat.

Remember Mr Slipper? Former Speaker, toppled after allegations of sexual harassment surfaced against him – allegations in which Mr Brough played a significant part? Oh, and let’s not forget, Brough himself admitted that he’d ‘misled’ people about the situation in order to help bring about Slipper’s downfall. But I digress.

The food presented for the dinner was, as expected, rather fancy. It’s the sort of thing you’d see at very high-end restaurants. That wasn’t the issue. It was the way the dishes were described. Now, you’d expect to see a little mockery of the opposing side at an…

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Labor Bashing

8 Jun

The Australian Independent Media Network

CheerleadersIt’s surely not just me who has noticed the mainstream media losing their shit this week. It’s like the very sight of Kevin Rudd is crack cocaine – sending journalists into a frenzied, chest beating fit of prediction and smear. It’s not like we can’t explain why this happens. We can. It’s because Kevin Rudd is a stick to beat Gillard’s government with. But mark my words, if it wasn’t Kevin fucking Kevin, or Telstra’s asbestos, or Joel unhinged-Fitzgibbons or Labor backbenchers with their overnight suitcases being reported as having packed up their offices, it wouldn’t make any difference. I’m not going to waste any more time trying to find blame for this situation with the Labor Party, because surely this job has been done, and done and done and re-done many times with many more words than I could write in a hundred years. Let’s be honest. The axis…

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Holy Privatisation

4 Jun

Ærchies Archive - Digital Detritus

It seems that St. Peter came running to the Higher Authorities one day. “What’s the problem?” he was asked.

“Whatever will we do?” he asked. “There are thirty LNP members at the Pearly Gates, led by John Howard, Tony Abbott and Campbell Newman. They are asking for permission to come it. This has never happened before. What should we do?”

“Go back, select the five best among them, and let them in. We will look into it before we decide exactly what to do with the rest of them.”

St. Peter left, but it was only a few minutes before he came running back. “They’re gone, they’re gone!”

“What, the LNP members??”

“No, Lord, the Pearly Gates.”

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3 Jun

The Australian Independent Media Network

Oh grow up

Royal Parade, in the Melbourne suburb of Carlton is a magnificent leafy tree lined boulevard. It may not match the historical importance of St Kilda Road but for me it is where my Australian patriotism birthed. At the North end of Royal Parade where the long journey to Sydney begins is the home of the Carlton Football Club. Australian Rules football is uniquely Australian. I played the game with some success and I have never lost my love for its indigenous flavor. It was at this ground that I saw my first match and passages of play remain indelible on my mind sixty years on. However, this boulevard occupies another memory.

The year of 1952 saw the coronation of Queen Elizabeth II and in 1954, the new Queen visited Australia. On this occasion, her motorcade from Essendon Airport was to take her to the city via Royal Parade and schoolchildren…

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Disappointing start for Guardian Oz edition

1 Jun

Unfortunately, the bulk of political reporters are currently working more as PR reps for the Conservative side, instead of truly examining, dissecting and exposing what they ‘report’. It takes retired journalists and the Fifth Estate to do it for them, despite fewer resources, no easy access to the Canberra Press Gallery and almost non-existent responses from elected representatives, including their own. As has been said, ‘The truth is out there’ and it is an ongoing battle to uncover it, to discern it, but there are those who continue to battle for the sake of a too-often partisan and willing-ly ignorant public – those who will be most affected by careless voting.


COMMENT By Barry Tucker                    31 May, 2013

Australian consumers of political news must be disappointed with the first few editions of GuardianAus, which launched last Monday.

With a core of former Fairfax journalists, it is being described as Fairfax lite. A story by David Marr on Cardinal George Pell’s appearance before a Victorian State government inquiry into child abuse was probably the highlight of the first week. A very well written piece of work.

But a story on federal Opposition Leader Tony Abbott’s virtual forum with 8,000 voters in the Assistant Treasurer David Bradbury’s western Sydney federal seat of Lindsay epitomised the worst of journalism. In fact, it was the most pathetic piece of reporting I have read in the past several years.

To begin with, it is little more than a re-hash of a partial transcript of the forum, provided…

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