You wouldn’t read about it!

Are you like me,  can’t start the day without caffeine as well as an adrenaline shot here at Cafe Whispers and then a trip to The Political Sword to read any new post and comments there as well as following up on LYNS-DAILY-LINKS.     So there’s plenty to think about as I  get on with the routine of daily life.    Sometimes it’s more than just thinking.   It’s soul searching,  which I found with Ad Astra’s  article challenging us to question our moral values when judging others,   particularly politicians.   There’s been a lot of name calling,  moralising and finger pointing at Julia Gillard and her government lately.    I found myself amongst a lot of serious comment on that post and found it heavy going and challenging,  though worth while too.  

At one stage I had to retreat into a bit of light relief by composing one of my ‘pomes’  and doing some research on the web about compasses* in general.    I also got a lift from Mr. Denmore  at The Failed Estate.    He makes me think and smile too.    His  latest brilliant satire on the way the Murdoch media has been ‘stitching up’ Julia Gillard and her government with angling,  exaggerations and surmising shows  how journos these days will make a mountain out of a molehill and invent a story about almost anything.   As if rumors and leaks and innuendos weren’t enough we get body language interpreted.   We’ve just  been discussing that here with Min’s latest post on leadership.  

So I used the ideas suggested by Min, Ad Astra and Mr. Denmore to come up with a ‘story’ of my own.   I’ve illustrated it with a picture of HMS Sirius,  flagship of The First Fleet,  bringing  the first settlers to Australia.   Please note it is flying a red flag!   Was that an omen for the future?    I imagined what might happen  if we really did keep the compass from that historic ship symbolically stored in the Lodge.   Then the key to that all important cellar was rumored to be lost by the PM!    Typical of a woman to lose the key!   But what if it was a stich up of the kind Mr. Denmore  has so ably illustrated?    Who was really to blame?    

I’ve put it in a ‘pome’  but it’s as likely a story as any The Australian could carry.   Remember the Godwin Grech email?   Who would have believed that?    It really happened.    Can anyone think of a headline a journo might dream up if he had a whiff of that rumor about the lost key?     What’s the angle?     Had a disgruntled member of the household staff at the Lodge filched it to make trouble?   Maybe the First Bloke had it in a vise in his shed making  a souvenir copy?    Was Tony Abbott really there in his fireman’s gear?    Or was he framed?    Perhaps  it was  just another publicity stunt to show off his pecs?    Any alternative headlines to mine?

Australia’s Moral Compass Lost By Prime Minister?

The Australian government looked star crossed,
When the nation’s moral compass* had seemed lost.
A secure lock at the official residence
Of the Prime Minister had long made sense.

It stayed safe in the cellar in its binnacle,
While up above the country reached the pinnacle
Of achievement in women’s liberation
With its first female leader of the nation.

Then the story broke. Reporters crowded round.
Was it true the ship of state had run aground?
Or gone off course? Were many lost at sea?
How had Julia Gillard mislaid the sacred key?

There had been leaks, anonymous phone calls,
Rumours that the strange phrase ‘Kelvin’s Balls’
Had so alarmed the PM, it seemed, she’d had it hid.
No one confirmed that though, not for a thousand quid.

Suddenly a noisy clamor from below
Revealed Tony Abbott! Wouldn’t you know!
He’d broken in, wielding his fireman’s axe.
Said he’d had to, to clarify some facts.

He lifted high the two brass monkeys sitting there,
Waved them aloft in the media glare,
Pointing out that they were frozen solid,
Proving global warming theory quite invalid!

His home invasion had paid off! He thought he’d won!
But Julia arrested him, brought him undone.
Like Guy Fawkes he’d been caught red handed.
Tried for treason, he was as traitor branded.

His defence? A man should steer the ship of state,
With his wife as First Lady, not First Mate!
Finally the judge’s ruling he could not dodge.
He’d never have the Captain’s quarters at The Lodge.

Julia Gillard at the trial eyeballed him,
Her hand on the arm of her partner, Tim,
“Tony, I called you ‘Mate’ once as a joke.
Now here’s my real mate,  Australia’s first First Bloke.”

* In the 18th and 19th centuries a ship’s compass was always kept in the binnacle along with the Kelvin Spheres, two iron balls to offset magnetic shifts. These iron balls, mounted on brass arms, sitting on either side of the ship’s binnacle gave rise to the term ‘brass monkey’ and the now well known description of extremes of cold which could freeze its balls off.

68 comments on “You wouldn’t read about it!

  1. “Suddenly a noisy clamor from below
    Revealed Tony Abbott! Wouldn’t you know!
    He’d broken in, wielding his fireman’s axe.
    Said he’d had to, to clarify some facts.”

    Sorry, Patricia, he is the arsonist not the fireman. He is only capable of destroying, not building.

    He is a wolf in sheep’s clothing. It is he, that we all need to be afraid of, not the lady inthe lodge.

  2. OMG..there went my cup of coffee!!! That’s a truly ‘orrible thought so early in the morning Pip.

  3. ‘Religion is proceeding, with a moft rapid influence, among the firft focieties of Paris, and has already got poffeffion of the toilette.

    ‘Crofies and beads, and the various fymbols of the restored faith, will, according to all appearance, very foon eclipse the paraphernalia of Pagan Mythology.’

    Sydney Gazette 5 March 1803

  4. Abbott is on Radio National telling listeners that the carbon tax is going to cost them $11.5 billion per year. THAT IS A LIE.
    Now he’s being asked what he thinks of Kevin Rudd, and answers that what is needed is a change of government. What a surprise.

    He says, “should politicians say one thing before the election, and something different after the election”. His plan is to present the bill for a plebiscite which would be held 90 days after the Carbon Tax Bill goes to the House of Reps. When he was asked about the cost he said he knew it would cost but…

    Next up, a lady whose name I missed says that today 200 scientists are going to ask for more respect because the climate change debate has gone too far. GOOD.

    That’s funny because I’ve been thinking for the last hour that there needs to be a much louder voice from those who are actually qualified to speak.

  5. Catching up, and Min, have you got any clues as to why Abbott is saying ‘plebiscite’, while the news reports and reporters are saying ‘referendum?
    Do you know if their is a difference legally?

  6. Hehe el gordo. In ye olde writing an S was written like an f hence the reason these are confused in translation.

  7. Pip, my understanding is that a plebiscite is a vote on an issue, while a referendum is a vote on a specific law. Therefore as the carbon tax isn’t yet law, then it should be called a plebiscite.

  8. Still on Radio National, and Bob Brown is being asked about the “plebiscite”.
    His take on it is that it will cost $70 million of’ tax payers money, and when the people are asked whether they want the big polluters to pay Abbott will lose. He says the debate should be on the floor of the Parliament and
    also pointed out that the plebiscite is non-binding.
    Fran Kelly asked about the reported dissension amongst the Climate Commission members last Friday and he said it was business like, as it should be.

    He also says there is a ‘bit of a sideshow with Tony Abbott’ and Julia Gillard is business like and unflappable.

    In a nutshell, Kelly is unable to lead Bob Brown by the nose to say what she wants to hear 😀

  9. “Abbott is on Radio National telling listeners that the carbon tax is going to cost them $11.5 billion per year. THAT IS A LIE.

    Is not the truth more like that the PM is going to raise the money from a small number of big polluters to redistribute among those who create carbon free industries and the public, This is to compensate for the extra the changeover to clean power will cost.

    Mr. Abbott is saying he can bring on a plebiscite without talking to any one else.

    This proves that this today’s stunt. The shame that the time of QT and parliament will wasted while he plays his childish games.

    I forgot, there is no QT today, he may have to wait until tomorrow.

    We have four sitting days before the Senate change hands. The first week of July we also have four days.

    Mr. Abbott is fast running out of time.

    All Mr. Abbot would achieve with a plebiscite, is put the matter fully in the public eyes. By the time it occurs, all the details will be in the public eyes.

    Who pays for advertising during a plebiscite? Surely the government is allow to defend itself.

    I do not believe Mr. Abbott wants a plebiscite. He needs to be careful, the government just might call his bluff.

    Yes there is a difference under the Constitution. A f referendum is when you want to change the Constitution. Those who are calling for a referendum must want the climate change bills enshrined in the Constitution.

    A plebiscite as far as I know, carries no legal weight. We had plebiscites, I think on the national anthem and flag.

    The only legal binding vote that allows the carbon pricing to be enacted, takes place on the lower house floor. It can be changed by the Senate.

    Executive government promotes legislation. Whether it becomes law or not, is decided by a vote in parliament.

    No one can tell the Executive what to do, they can only advise. This is the Westminster system.

    The Executive survives or falls on the floor of the lower house.

    Yes, the Opposition is correct, there have been 17 losses for the government, mainly on low value procedural matters. They have not been defeated on anything of importance.

    The four losses that took Mr. Menzies back to the people were important matters that needed resolution. I also believe that there were other reasons that Mr. Menzies took the action he did, the main one being that he would end up with better numbers.

  10. Mr. Brown is correct. Mr. Abbott might not like the wording of an plebiscite if he got one.

    Remember how the previous Liberal PM, Mr. Howard, stopped the movement for a republic by the wording of the plebiscite he allowed to procede.

    Once again, Mr. Abbott is acting without taking at least five minutes to reflect on his action. It is a sound bite he has heard, that sounds good.

  11. ‘I do not believe Mr. Abbott wants a plebiscite. He needs to be careful, the government just might call his bluff.’

    I reckon you might be right there
    I also think it would be interesting if the Government called his bluff (they won’t)

    He has been very deliberate in hte question, asking if people want to pay a ‘Carbon Tax’.

    If push came to shove, I think it would be pretty easy fpr the Government to then legitimately put through the exact same policy as being proposed because, in a legal sense, this is not a tax. As Gillard stated, arguing semantically is all they have, and she was not going to get into that argument (a mistake imo). It would, in one fell swoop, shut up (you would think) all opposition to the proposed bill.

  12. Thank you ladies.
    Abbott said something about 90 days blah blah, the plebiscite, so is he hoping that the Bill will be legislated afterwhich he could then demand a referendum, maybe , or is it possible that he’s bluffing…. I don’t think so…..

  13. ‘Have you told anyone else about this??’

    I have a faint memory of myself perhaps mentioning something in a Gutter once or twice about the media and their ‘barracking’ tendencies.

    My memory fades…. 🙂

  14. Another of the ‘you wouldn’t believe it’ gasps from me listening to Fran Kelly today! First of all, isn’t it appalling that a gathering of our most important scientists have to seek support from government in the attack on their credibility?

    Even more appalling though is that Fran Kelly then sees this story as an apportunity to wonder why scientists are losing their credibility. Aren’t they shooting themselves in the foot b y buying into the climate change debate.

  15. You’re kidding me aren’t you patriciawa, kelly is complaining about scientists debating …. science??

    The nerve of em 😉

  16. I’ve just stepped through the door following an appointment, I’ll have a look out the back.

  17. Min, I had a giggle too, and was about to tell TomR he could ignore the ‘grim’ one if he wished …

  18. patriciawa, I listened to Fran Kelly this morning for the first time in months and quickly remembered why I stopped listening.

  19. Patricia, going by scientist daughter a majority don’t much care, they are far too busy getting the job done.

  20. patriciawa,

    Climate change deniers damaging us – scientists

    SCIENTISTS are warning federal parliamentarians a misinformation campaign about the evidence of human-induced climate change is undermining the value of other research.

    More than 200 scientists will take part in the the annual Science Meets Parliament today.

    They will ask MPs and senators to make sure the climate change debate does not harm the vital contribution research is making to the nation’s future.

    The Federation of Australian Science and Technological Societies says misleading claims about climate science are spilling over into attacks on the credibility of scientific research in general.

    “The valuable and credible work of all scientists is under attack as a result of a noisy misinformation campaign by climate denialists,” CEO Anna Maria Arabia said.

  21. Reb, my take on Gillard’s ‘ankle level popularity’ is that it’s a combo of a number of factors – the Murdoch media are obviously having a field day jumping on every move – Gillard’s iffy commitment to leftist issues most especially gay marriage – and the government’s complete lack of nous in selling it’s policies.

    The government should take notes from The Master JWH. Howard set the scene and then responded to ‘the scene’. An example that always comes to mind is Howard ‘coming down hard’ on Disability Pension ‘rorters’. The media ran with the stories for weeks, so along comes Howard to fix the problem. Some might conclude that this was Howard being an opportunist, however similar happened so frequently that I’m suspicious that this wasn’t a strategy to implement otherwise unpopular policy.

  22. Tom R – My decision to delete, Tom R. No desire to offend you. I have persona non grata policy on this thread for individuals from whom an apology is outstanding for personal insults and slurs to myself and others elsewhere on this site. My rule of thumb for engaging in discussion on articles i post being that criticism of those commenting rather than their opinions relevant to the thread is not acceptable..

    No criticism of yourself intended there. Cheers.

  23. ‘The media ran with the stories for weeks, so along comes Howard to fix the problem.’

    The opposite almost appears to be happening now. The media run with a story (eg, Live exports to Indonesia) and along comes yabot to ‘fix’ the problem. Forget the fact that the ‘problem’ is not as bad as the media are making out to be, and that this is an issue that really needs everyone working together.

    Unfortunately, even on something like this, yabot cannot find it in him to wrok with the governemnt.

    Windsors comments recently about working in partbership and yabot not being ‘able to handle it’ rings truer day by day

  24. Tom, same thing 😉 The Liberals can ‘fix’ ALL problems. I mean to say, Abbott suggests that he can Turn the Boats Around using nothing more than the power of lycra.

  25. Fair enough patriciawa, I understand there are outstanding issues which I am not party of and therefore will not comment on that, but I do find deleting comments to be unfortunate, as debate then loses context.

    But, your thread, your rules.

  26. ‘using nothing more than the power of lycra.’

    That would have me doing an abrupt about face when confronted Min

  27. His desperation seems to be reaching fever pitch, doesn’t it Tom R. What amazes me is how much air time he is being given by the ABC. Do you think the government are deliberately letting him run amok without comment ? Or are they just not being reported?

    Fran Kelly talks about Gillard being in trouble with the ‘polls, the parliament and her party’ and I’m wondering if she doesn’t want to believe that the parliament and her party are still suipporting her.

    Headlines about Kevin Rudd as proof that he is undermining Gillard are hardly evidence that the party is split. Headlines are manufactured by the media, not caused by what’s actually happening.

  28. ‘His desperation seems to be reaching fever pitch, doesn’t it’

    Only a week to go patriciawa and he slides into insignificance.

    There was also another good comment made on Insiders yesterday, along the lines of that, currently, the government doesn’t have a story to tell. They are in talks with everyone concerned with their policies, and, as such, cannot really relese any details on or progress.

    The only thing they could release was their plans for the carbon price advertising, a release forced on them it seems by the failed bidder for the job planning to go public the following day (is that ethical, even legal)

    But, as they said, once these policies start actually growing meat, their story will strengthen. It all depends on how much skin the government has lost by then. And that is all yabot wants to do, take skin off. As CU mentioned earleir in regards to the estimates hearing on the NBN, they are not interested in policy, but simply politics. Because no matter how often the opposion or their media say so, the policies are sound.

    Well, from what we know of them to date anyway.

  29. Patricia re “Headlines about Kevin Rudd as proof that he is undermining Gillard are hardly evidence that the party is split.”

    I find it amazing – the media chases after Rudd quizzes him on whether he still has leadership ambitions which he categorically denies. The media then decides that Rudd is trying to ‘undermine’ Gillard’s leadership. Just making it up as you go along…..

  30. Catching up, just now listening to Bob Brown. Remember WA is a few hours behind EST. Wonderful to listen to such common sense. Fran Kelly can’t win with him, except by changing the subject when he started to praise Julia’s unflappability. But even his response to her comment on the polls didn’t please. That emphasis on his being the Leader of the Greens was very strong as she ended the interview. Was she trying to say ‘So that explains his bias’?

  31. Yes, Tom R, I must say I am feeling that countdown sensation myself, so how desperate Abbott must be feeling is anyone’s guess, but it’s pretty obvious he’s going full tilt while he can. Hopefully he’ll lead his party over the cliff before he gets the chance to take the country with him.

  32. I saw and heard Reb’s voice (at least I thought so) but now can’t see him. His tone was a little sharp ….not really an indictable offense though.

  33. Tom, being a visual thinker that’s one that has always got me when Abbott says I’ll Turn the Boats Around. I keep visualising some sort of giant speedo and sproing, back go the boats. Ok, so I’m silly…

  34. “Rest easy troops there is little chance of it happening because he needs to ‘win support from the crossbench in the lower house and the Australian Greens in the Senate”

    el gordo, you are correct. That is why we are saying it is a stunt.

  35. “Abbott said something about 90 days blah blah, the plebiscite, so is he hoping that the Bill will be legislated after which he could then demand a referendum”

    Sorry if the bill is law, there is nothing a plebiscite could do. I am not sure what he could have a referendum on. It is open to be challenge in court but on what grounds, a law passed by parliament.

    No, all Mr. Abbott is attempting to do is to divert attention from what is occurring in parliament, through his feeble efforts to surf and undermine parliament.

  36. CU, re his mobile. That one always gave son a laugh. For those who don’t know son is a LS on the patrol boats. When Abbott said that he was going to turn the boats around a journo asked him how would the Navy know which boats to turn around. Abbott replied that he would give instructions to the Navy. The journo asked How? Abbott replied that he would have a special phone (obviously a special, special one) to each patrol boat and personally give them instructions.

    This is particularly weird for a number of reasons not the least of these being that Abbott is politician and he cannot give instructions to naval personnel. There is something called the Separation of Powers doctrine.

  37. ToM, I’ll check. Miglo never deleted anyone’s comments in this blog’s history and this blog isn’t going to start doing it now except under extreme circumstances.

  38. ToM, I was feeling quite nostalgic over the weekend. You’re an old Blogocrat aren’t you? I know that some go back even further. I was originally with the late great Matty Price, then to Tim Dunlop’s Blogocracy. Some go back even further with the Tim’s Road to Surfdom.

  39. The Rule of this Blog according to Miglo is that all comments are welcome. Keep it impersonal and keep it on topic..however, off topic comments from our regular contributors are welcome.

  40. Thanks Min. It is now 4 years since I started exchangin views wiht you and several others here.

    But you now have an editor that is willing to delete all comments!


    …and some people think I’m difficult.

  41. “The Rule of this Blog according to Miglo is that all comments are welcome. Keep it impersonal and keep it on topic”

    Which sound spersonally fine. But it doesn’t really explain why my comment at 8.48am was deleted, reinstated, and then deleted again…..

  42. Is Mr. Abbott above the law?

    Does Mr. Abbott intend to make his own laws? We have another example this week, following his attempt last week.

    He has no times for conventions but I am sure he will expect those he establish are obey.

    Mr. Abbott seems to believe he can do anything he sets his mind to, as rules and regulations do not apply to him.

  43. LADIES AND GENTLEMEN. With indulgence I’m taking the comment back to my Leadership and other ambitions topic. Apologies.

  44. Deleted the following at your leisure…

    Why on earth would I stop pointing out that an author at this site has a record of deleting factual, inoffensive comments, without explanation?

    Whether people agree with my style of commentary or not. I think the lack of rationale, or explanation is a disgrace!!

  45. “I have deleted nothing

    Yes Min, we know that you have deleted nothing, but Patricia has, purely based on her personal dislike for certain individuals.

    It’s a personal vendetta, that is now dictating the editorial policy at the Cafe.

    The comment I made that was deleted was innoffensive and relevant to the topic.

    I am still waiting for a satisfactory explanataion as to why it was deleted, reinstated and then deleted again…???

  46. ToM: This topic is closed and is no longer an issue to be pursued at the Café. It’s FINISHED, ENDED, CLOSED..if you get my meaning.

  47. I’m still waiting for an explanation..

    And I think given that an explanation still hasn’t been forthcoming, an apology would seem like the right think to do as well.

    It’s just a matter of decency and manners really…

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