“If that means deaths at sea continue, he said, so be it.”

26 Jun

As I read today’s piece by Peter van Onselen on the asylum seeker policy stand-off, the following stood out: 

One well-placed Liberal source told The Australian that Abbott would rather see Labor continue to bleed politically with ongoing boat arrivals. If that means deaths at sea continue, he said, so be it.

Let me just say that again.

One well-placed Liberal source told The Australian that Abbott would rather see Labor continue to bleed politically with ongoing boat arrivals. If that means deaths at sea continue, he said, so be it.

214 Responses to ““If that means deaths at sea continue, he said, so be it.””

  1. Lucas James June 26, 2012 at 5:40 pm #



  2. helvityni June 26, 2012 at 5:49 pm #

    Seeing Morrison on 7.30 and Brandis on Q&A touting their hardline views on asylum seekers, I believe their boss, the good Christian, Abbott is even harder and will do anything to get to the Lodge. Are the Aussies going allow this?


  3. Elisabeth June 26, 2012 at 6:01 pm #



  4. doug quixote June 26, 2012 at 6:09 pm #

    Totally unacceptable.

    Abbott is unfit for office, any office.


  5. jo wiseman June 26, 2012 at 6:14 pm #

    When I first read this I got the impression it was a quote of Tony Abbott. Then I read the article you linked to and found it was a quote of a reporter’s interpretation of something an unnamed Liberal source said about Tony Abbott.


    • Mindy June 26, 2012 at 6:28 pm #

      Abbott possibly misquoted by the press? Not sure whether this is a good thing or whether it means that the whole shebang has gone completely down the drain. I always think Abbott’s latest is going to be the thing that finally wakes up people to what he is really like but I’ve always been disappointed so far.


      • jo wiseman June 26, 2012 at 6:40 pm #

        I didn’t mean it was a misquote. The press never had it as a quote in the first place. Jennifer never said it was a quote of Tony Abbott either. That’s just the impression I had before I read the article she linked to.


        • Mindy June 26, 2012 at 6:57 pm #

          Someone said on twitter this morning that Abbott had confirmed it at a press conference, but I can’t find the link. Perhaps that was a bit of a furphy too. Seems like it is just the media being even more crap then.


    • Jennifer Wilson June 26, 2012 at 6:51 pm #

      I guess the point is Abbott is perceived by some in his party as wanting asyum seeker boats to arrive because it makes Labor bleed. Deaths by drowning are probably an inevitable result of the journeys. It isn’t clear to me if the quote is from Abbott or Liberal source. We should ask Mr van Onselen perhaps?


      • doug quixote June 26, 2012 at 7:06 pm #

        “So be it” sounds exactly like our Tony.


      • jo wiseman June 26, 2012 at 7:35 pm #

        There doesn’t seem to be any need to check because quotes in Mr van Olsen’s article are marked with quotation marks so we know he wasn’t quoting either of them.
        After I read his article I thought your own quotation marks were there because you were quoting his piece.


        • hudsongodfrey June 26, 2012 at 7:54 pm #

          What are arguing though Jo, that Jennifer must be wrong because you can’t read? The statement is not quoted but merely attributed to a well placed Liberal source, and not by Jennifer but by a journalist at the Australian. A newspaper by the way that hasn’t had a good word for Labor in living memory.

          Maybe somebody should ask Abbott, but then again if his lips are moving you never know….

          And don’t try getting a condemnation out of Labor either their policies are hardly more laudable.


          • jo wiseman June 26, 2012 at 8:05 pm #

            Sorry hudsongodfrey, I wasn’t saying that Jennifer was wrong. I thought I clearly said that I had originally misinterpreted it. I can’t see why you feel the need to insult my reading though, everyone makes mistakes sometimes and it’s an easy mistake to make before you read the piece by Mr van Onselen.


            • hudsongodfrey June 26, 2012 at 8:24 pm #

              I’ll grant you that I’m disinclined to reading anything in the Australian pusillanimous rag that it is, and I’m sorry if you think I’ve verballed you.

              To be clear I think neither party have policies that show the slightest indication of responding to anything even vaguely representing a moral compass.

              Boat arrivals aren’t the problem in my view. I doubt we have anything whatsoever to fear from a few Afghan refugees ousted from their homeland in part due to a war we participate in. Probably some of them for being more on our side than that of their erstwhile oppressors.

              Stopping dangerous boat journeys is a maritime responsibility we should take more seriously however, not that our Navy, hamstrung as they may be by their political masters’ policies, should be impugned.

              We ought in my view to go over and get these people who need our help, bring them here, and give it to them. Maybe they would like mining jobs. I don’t know. It does not seem impossible to repeat the success with Afghans or Tamils that we had with Greeks and Italians after WWII.


              • Wendy Strahan June 27, 2012 at 12:35 pm #

                I heard a man from Afghanistan say on an abc radio program that there are hundreds of thousands waiting to come to Australia . How will we be able to house and offer welfare , educational needs, health care etc to so many ?


                • hudsongodfrey June 27, 2012 at 12:56 pm #

                  But there aren’t hundreds of thousands en route here right now or waiting in camps somewhere in Indonesia or Malaysia. The numbers a couple of orders of magnitude smaller than the report you heard. I think it was possibly exaggerated, but even if it was somewhat grounded in an anecdotal reality there is still a great difference between being a refugee and merely wanting to emigrate.


                  I’m concerning myself with Indonesia in supplying these figures because this where the boats embark from and the immediate question seems to be how to save those lives.

                  I think we have to do more than to allow fear and xenophobic hyperbole dominate the debate here. I put our capacity at somewhere over
                  100,000 anyway given than we took 182,159 Europeans in the wake of WW2 into a population of around five million.


                  It seems possible that Afghans make good citizens in these relatively smaller numbers does it not?


                  • Wendy Strahan June 27, 2012 at 1:55 pm #

                    No one ever said they would not make good citizens.


                    • hudsongodfrey June 27, 2012 at 1:59 pm #

                      Then perhaps we are agreed 🙂


        • Jennifer Wilson June 26, 2012 at 7:58 pm #

          I don’t know what your point is, Jo, but I am quoting the van Onselen piece verbatim.


          • Trevor Melksham June 30, 2012 at 5:14 am #

            Why is everyone jumping on Jo? She clarified her error. That’s a lot more than the filth that infests the Opposition benches ever does.

            Abbot may not have said it, but he at least condones it.


      • Sam Jandwich June 27, 2012 at 7:19 am #

        It’s just “colatteral damage”.

        Just the fact that this idea would emerge from sources close to the party is indicative of something deeply sinister going on. Are Australians really such lemmings that they would vote for this lot? or is it time to make a conscience vote and move to New Zealand?


  6. Marilyn June 26, 2012 at 6:34 pm #

    Well what the babbling media all forget is that shove offs are illegal.

    What they are both whining about is how to break the law and kill more people.

    this group drowned because we let them, that is the bottom line.

    And before anyone says otherwise, the cables show clearly that they knew on Sunday that people were in trouble, they knew on Tuesday the boat was sinking and did nothing until Thursday and then pretended it was a sudden emergency.

    that is murder.


    • Mindy June 26, 2012 at 6:55 pm #

      I wonder if there was lots of arguing with Indonesia in the interim about whose water the boat was in and who had responsibility for these poor people.


    • Paul Smith June 27, 2012 at 11:05 am #

      Emotional nonsense Marilyn. Vessel was far closer to Indonesia then Australian territory and was advised to go back. Their response – ignore and sail another 130 nautical miles then sink. THEY CREW COULD HAVE MADE IT BACK BUT OPTED TO GO FOR THE MONEY. BLAME WHERE BLAME IS DUE – THE CAPTAIN AND CREW MURDERED THEIR PASSENGERS BY THEIR ACTIONS.


      • hudsongodfrey June 27, 2012 at 11:18 am #



        Your tone, shouting in capitals and hyperbolic accusations of murder are more emotional than Marylin’s outrage at the deaths ever were. She is entitled I believe to be somewhat distraught as we should all be at the loss of life. Indeed the matter of the article is to take exception to Abbott’s apparent callousness in that regard.

        What you appear to be intent upon is a very cowardly kind of blame transference onto the Indonesians. Something that you appear to have supplied for yourself perhaps as it hasn’t come to my attention elsewhere in the mainstream media.

        Please either respond with proof that the Indonesians were both aware and had capacity to prevent this, or pull your head in and take that kind of invective elsewhere.


        • hudsongodfrey June 27, 2012 at 11:57 am #

          So threats in capitals is it?

          You couldn’t lop my bonce in a flying fit you self important pusillanimous carbuncle on the backside of humanity!

          You are now twice dared to provide proof or slink back whence you came.


          • hudsongodfrey June 27, 2012 at 12:21 pm #

            Proof positive that you don’t have it.

            Anyone with the slightest shred would provide a link.

            You’re just another troll and an insulting one at that!


            • hudsongodfrey June 27, 2012 at 12:30 pm #

              Post the links to these things if they exist and try to inform the conversation.

              So far you have done nought but come in here shouting and attempt to drag the tone into the gutter.

              If you have proof that I am in error I have the balls to admit it, which is more than I can say of you thus far.


              • Paul Smith June 27, 2012 at 12:54 pm #


                There you are. Read carefully about the five fully equipped boats given on 2002 and avoid trying to focus on the pathetic excuse that Indonesia needs Australia to buy them another boat. Flies right in the face of the nationalistic staments made by the President earlier in the year about establishing an independent coast guard. Got enough money for warships (and Indo warships seem awfully unable to perform rescue yet Australian warships can?)but none to patrol your own harbours – another billion dollars on the way Australia?

                Whiklst you are at it read the Jakarta Post, Kompas or other Indo press for their extensive coverage of the issue. Cant find it? Because Indonesia never has and never will care about refugees – only how they can get Australia to react.

                So you have your link and plenty to go on with – now go and do it and dont post for several hours to convince us you actually looked Mr anonymous forum policeman.


                • hudsongodfrey June 27, 2012 at 1:30 pm #


                  I have read the article you linked to and have seen the same or similar elsewhere earlier in the day.
                  I don’t know why you think this supports your overwhelmingly negative characterisations of the Indonesians in the attempt you clearly made to try and shift blame onto them.

                  You omit that…”A SENIOR officer in Indonesia’s search and rescue agency has said Australia’s rescue authority was in contact by phone with a stricken ship of asylum seekers but did not pass on the phone number.”

                  You conveniently overlook…”The Indonesian Navy has confirmed it sent two ships, at the request of Basarnas, to look for the sinking vessel last week, but gave up when it could not be found.”

                  And you ignore…”He confirmed it had only one small fibreglass-hulled rescue boat, based in Jakarta, to deploy between Java and Christmas Island. Marshal Sandi said the vessel could not venture out in waves higher than two or three metres…. Despite this, for 44 hours last week the Australian Maritime Safety Authority left Basarnas in charge of the search for the asylum seeker vessel making its way in heavy seas to Christmas Island.”

                  All of which seem to indicate to me that the Indonesians both needed and would have welcome Australian Naval assistance to carry out this search and rescue effort, contrary to what you inferred.

                  Moreover you insist on discounting their claimed lack of capacity in terms of willingness to accept our assistance in the form of “a 60-metre ocean-going catamaran to help rescue sinking boats in future.” That also does not fit your bias.

                  You then go on in misspelled weasel words to snidely admit you have no case, saying “Whiklst you are at it read the Jakarta Post, Kompas or other Indo press for their extensive coverage of the issue. Cant find it? Because Indonesia never has and never will care about refugees …”

                  I have no apology to make to you on that account. Yours has been an altogether heartless and callous attempt to impugn Indonesia and excuse Australia from feeling the level of remorse and regret we should have for the deaths of these fellow human beings.

                  Take heart! You are matched by Tony Abbott “so be it”.


                • Marilyn June 28, 2012 at 3:17 pm #

                  Paul, they are little bigger than dinghys.

                  It is not the fault of the Indonesians, it is our fault for forcing Indonesia to look after and deport people for us and then us refusing to help.


                • Marilyn June 29, 2012 at 6:00 pm #

                  You fuckwit, if they don’t know where to go what is the point of the ships.


              • Paul Smith June 27, 2012 at 1:44 pm #

                As I dont seeem to be able to reply underneath then i will do so here.

                There is absolutely no way you could have checked those sources in the brief time elapsed.

                Senior officer in the Indonesian Search And Rescue Agency? Does it exist? One wonders – apparently it does, apparently it doesn’t. Hell even the Indonesian warships in the area seem unable to even see these boats setting out let alone sinking. Now we have another one that the Indo’s missed as well. Seems like merchant ships can see them, photograph them but the Indo’s just cant find them. 110 miles from shore is just too far, send warships from other countries further away to do the job.

                Your blind determination to accept Indo statements without question shows you have no objectivity. The fact that you accept Indonesian spin is ironic – many sheep in that paddock.


                • hudsongodfrey June 27, 2012 at 2:03 pm #

                  Are you suggesting I can’t read one article in 5 minutes?

                  And no Paul it is not my blind determination to accept the Indonesian statements that is in question here but your intent to impugn them on the slender (some might say non existent) evidence of your own biased interpretation.


              • Paul Smith June 27, 2012 at 2:24 pm #

                One article – I asked you to check local indo news which you obviously have not. Pathetic.

                Admit the problem – corrupt Indonesian officials could easily have stopped both these boats even departing, could even have turned and escorted them back with their mighty warships who are in the same saling lanes as the boats – yet you would prefer to focus 2000 miles south.


                • hudsongodfrey June 27, 2012 at 2:39 pm #

                  Why don’t you check the Indonesian news and come back to me before you shoot your load with comments like the ones you made to begin with.

                  The request that was made could be answered by finding of one article by the Indonesian press blaming Australia or otherwise reflecting a negligent attitude on their part.

                  You have been dared more than thrice!

                  I can find no such thing, and nor I hazard will you… It is past time you withdrew!


                • helvityni June 27, 2012 at 5:53 pm #

                  You sound awfully familiar, Paul Smith.


                  • Mindy June 27, 2012 at 8:00 pm #

                    Tony Abbott?


                    • Mindy June 27, 2012 at 8:01 pm #

                      That was meant to be in reply to Helvi.


                    • helvityni June 27, 2012 at 9:01 pm #

                      Mindy, you know that I know who some posters commenting here are, or should I say who the poster is. It’s not in the name, it’s in the writing, people are who they are under any name…like rose….


                    • helvityni June 27, 2012 at 9:02 pm #

                      Reply to MIndy…


                    • paul walter June 28, 2012 at 1:46 pm #

                      That’s be more to the point.


            • hudsongodfrey June 27, 2012 at 4:25 pm #

              Thanks awful for taking a common figure of speech and making a truly offensive image out of it….

              It is more or less equivalent to what you’ve done with The Age’s article in distorting the content into some kind of perverse version of a truth that supports your own callous attitude to the deaths of all these poor people.

              What I really object to is people like you who want others to make their tawdry cases for them. You’re spouting a pack of lies and when called out you’ve got zip, nada, ziich, nothing and didley squat but a torrent of abuse to show for it.

              I’m moved to ask whether this is your idea of the argument sketch from Monty Python.


              • AJ June 28, 2012 at 10:22 am #

                LOL thanks for that! I’d forgotten how much of a giggle they could be! I especially liked the early argument room – wonder if they are Tony Abbott’s scriptwriters nowdays part time?


                • doug quixote June 28, 2012 at 7:13 pm #

                  No they’re not!


                  • hudsongodfrey June 28, 2012 at 10:58 pm #

                    !ton er’yeht oN


                    • Hypocritophobe June 28, 2012 at 11:44 pm #

                      The planets must be aligning,for the arrival of Hudson Godfrey Lite (aka light-hearted)

                      I’m impressed!

                      Planetary Alignment Segue…………..

                      And a suggestion for a mindless repetitive slogan (for Labor) to counteract the blowalition.
                      How about “Stop the Lies”,or ‘stop the hate’ instead of ‘stop the boats’.
                      Leave them no wriggle room.
                      If on the other side of this break in Canberra, Labor have not nailed the main players in the Thomson//Slipper crucifixions to the flagpole, we can all just ignore al political machinations in this nation.Because that would mean they (both major parties) definitely eat,sleep and toxify together.


                    • Hypocritophobe June 28, 2012 at 11:46 pm #

                      EDIT ‘ignore al = ignore all.


                    • doug quixote June 29, 2012 at 6:36 am #

                      Yes they are! !era yeth seY

                      Era Yeth Sey? That almost makes sense.


                    • hudsongodfrey June 29, 2012 at 8:13 am #

                      Don’t say it to a Kligon


                    • Jennifer Wilson July 10, 2012 at 8:05 am #

                      THIS POST IS FROM HYPO NOT ME I MOVED IT

                      It’s official.As predicted here and on the Twittersphere, Labor has gone feral and is using the Greens as a football.The recent attacks on the Greens confirm that we now have 2 Liberal parties.One for every xenophobic occasion or opportunistic vote gathering campaign.
                      I think one thing is for sure,voters will pummel Labor at the next election.Nothing will alter the welded on in either party,But, Most of those who once preferenced Greens will now vote for them outright.
                      There will be tens of thousands of left leaning voters who will leave in droves.
                      Even Workchoices fear campaigns won’t work.Abbott must be laughing his box off.


                    • Hypocritophobe July 10, 2012 at 10:42 am #

                      Thanks JW.
                      You seem a bit ‘toey’, about taking credit

                      Yep,it’s all mine.
                      Lock it in, Eddie.


                    • Jennifer Wilson July 10, 2012 at 1:21 pm #

                      LOL. I’ve been doing fifty things at once today, lost track of myself. Couldn’t figure out where you wanted it to go till Forrest tweeted me and told me. A prong short of a fork, I am today.


                    • Julia July 11, 2012 at 11:31 am #

                      a prong short of a fork
                      I’m going to borrow that


          • Jennifer Wilson June 27, 2012 at 4:01 pm #

            Mr Smith I am a bee’s dick away from banning you.


            • Paul Smith June 27, 2012 at 4:44 pm #

              No problem Jennifer. Patently obvious that the cabal will hear what they want to hear and you will act. So ban me Jennifer if you wish and prove this blog has no objectivity.

              As for Hudson – your post is laughable. Give the amateur psych schtick a break – you make so many value assumptions in your posts it is ridiculous not to mention off topic.


              • hudsongodfrey June 27, 2012 at 4:52 pm #

                There’s a difference between wanting to be objective and being willing to put up with bluster and abuse in place of reasoned debate.

                You seem to think we’re going to let you lies slide by unchallenged and you’re wrong about that. Objectivity is just about the only thing that can save your reputation here, in the form of some actual evidence to back up your callous claims.


              • Jennifer Wilson June 27, 2012 at 5:04 pm #

                Personal abuse is no more acceptable here than it would be round a dinner table. If you are unable to communicate in any other form I withdraw your invitation to share the table.


                • doug quixote June 27, 2012 at 7:30 pm #

                  Well said Jennifer. In my experience it takes a huge effort to make HG stroppy!

                  Sometimes a fool will wander in from the site which cannot be mentioned in polite company and try trolling and flaming; I wonder how Sinclair can put up with several of them, if in fact there are more than two?


                  • hudsongodfrey June 27, 2012 at 8:40 pm #

                    Thanks Doug,

                    I get the feeling that although we occasionally disagree stridently that doesn’t mean we have to trade insults. Now the other day I some things to day to Marilyn, and we also weren’t on the same page. But that doesn’t mean that the discussions weren’t productive or that my respect for people diminishes rather than building as we rub up against one another’s opinions and blind spots.

                    I happen to think that the number of times you change your opinion is way more important than the number of times you’re right. So I’m more than happy to hung out to dry on this one, frankly if I am then I asked for it. I’ve done the “up with this I will not put” thing gotten on my little pony and rode the poor beast into the storm. Immoderate? If I have offended readers other than the intended I apologise. If I have merely entertained then I have probably embarrassed myself. Neither was my intent.

                    I may be too close to judge in this case, but there was button pushing strident language, downright lies, avoidance and deflections of the issues and all the other hallmarks of somebody arguing for entertainment at the expense of getting away with downright abuse and taking tragic events less seriously than I think they ought to be. This should not be just a matter of sport and gamesmanship between bloggers, Another boat has gone down. And we like our politicians here we are embroiled in childish arguments that solve nothing.

                    I suggested at the start let’s just go and get the lot of them. It wouldn’t hurt. The UNHCR site suggest there just over 4,200 awaiting assistance in the Indonesian region. Would it be so hard to simply clear the non-existent queue? I am at odds to find excuses not to.


                    • Mindy June 27, 2012 at 9:26 pm #

                      Only 4200? Seems like a low number, geez what are we waiting for? You are right, that would silence the ridiculous ‘queue jumper’ argument.


                    • hudsongodfrey June 27, 2012 at 10:34 pm #

                      I linked to it earlier on this page. It seems likely to be accurate.


                      If the number is double or even fourfold we should not be too concerned. As I said when a nation of only 5 million or so we took 182,000 Europeans in less than 10 years. So this thing we would do now is not even unprecedented.


                    • doug quixote June 27, 2012 at 9:52 pm #

                      Never, HG. Honest opinions expressed politely should never attract invective or the flaming of idiotic trolls.

                      I reluctantly admit that I have been guilty of fighting fire with fire; it was probably not a good tactic, and is a form of feeding the trolls – it is what they want. Once I identify a troll, I try never to address it directly (I don’t always succeed, and some of one are slippery beasts)

                      (PS that reads accurately and without any error.)


                    • hudsongodfrey June 27, 2012 at 10:36 pm #

                      Where angels fear to tread eh!


                • paul walter June 27, 2012 at 9:41 pm #

                  It is very rude to talk of bees penii in polite company.
                  Also inaccurate. Most bees are female, although the drones could maybe included.
                  Altho, if a bee of a certain type is apportioned of some thing equivalent to the off/on switch with human females, our friend would be in even deeper trouble than is apparent already.


                • Hypocritophobe June 27, 2012 at 10:02 pm #

                  Mr Smith ‘almost’ sounds like Bob Ellis.


                  • helvityni June 27, 2012 at 10:25 pm #

                    I expect better from you, Hypo, not like Bob Ellis at all, you have to try harder….l


                    • helvityni June 27, 2012 at 10:27 pm #

                      Sorry my posts to Mindy and Hypo have gone to wrong places, I did not press the reply button…so sorry for confusion…


                    • Hypocritophobe June 27, 2012 at 11:02 pm #

                      Helvi, read my post again,
                      I said “ALMOST”.
                      (Similar style,technique etc etc.)

                      Sorry I disappointed you.


                    • helvityni June 28, 2012 at 9:51 am #

                      Hypo, you have not disappointed me,all I was trying to say that this troll does not write like Ellis, but I know that s/he has been trolling on Ellis blog as well….


                    • Hypocritophobe June 28, 2012 at 10:05 am #

                      Aha! Now I get it.

                      Perhaps Jen and Bob should share the trolls email contact with each other?


                  • Paul Smith June 28, 2012 at 9:04 am #

                    Bob Ellis? Very talented writer but not my cup of tea.

                    Achieved a bit more than blog cheerleaders though.


                    • paul walter June 28, 2012 at 1:47 pm #

                      At least we werent in reverse, PS.


      • Belinda June 27, 2012 at 11:28 am #

        I don’t agree with that Paul. If we are in a position to help someone in trouble it is negligent to leave it for someone else to do. It is also morally wrong. If you were run over by a car would you not mind people ignoring you because someone else was close by?


        • Paul Smith June 27, 2012 at 11:34 am #

          Bad analogy Belinda. Any rescue would have more chance of success if those nearest perform it. One of the laws of the sea with boats in distress.


          • hudsongodfrey June 27, 2012 at 2:25 pm #

            Or those who have boats that operate in more than three meter seas?


            • Paul Smith June 27, 2012 at 3:00 pm #

              A whole country does not have boats that operate in 3 meter seas? You must think Indonesians really incapable or you are being an idiot just for the sake of.


              • hudsongodfrey June 27, 2012 at 4:00 pm #

                The guys who were on the spot reported it as such. Have you got a conflicting report to go by? Or are you just making stuff up to suit your bias as usual?


                • Paul Smith June 27, 2012 at 4:47 pm #

                  What are you on about? Not one boat in Indonesia that can handle a 3m swell? Right.


                  • hudsongodfrey June 27, 2012 at 5:01 pm #

                    Are you saying that you know of one that was properly equipped and able to respond at the time? If not then you have falsely and repeatedly misattributed blame.

                    Why you have done so is your own business, but going by your hostility starting with your attack on Marilyn I’m fast losing interest in your opinion. I simply challenge you to put up or shut up.


                    • Paul Smith June 27, 2012 at 5:14 pm #

                      The five that Australia donated? Do you know what happened to these resources and why they are not stationed where they should be?


                    • hudsongodfrey June 27, 2012 at 5:59 pm #

                      I have no idea where they’re stationed. Indonesia is a very big place and the idea that dealing with refugee boats is the sole maritime rescue purpose to which such donated vessels might be put is I would suggest a fantasy of your own creation.

                      I will repeat that it is up to you to defend your own irresponsible statements not for me to prove or disprove things on your behalf.


      • Marilyn June 28, 2012 at 7:14 pm #

        That is not true, we told them to go back to more dangerous waters near the Indonesian coast in the middle of the night.


  7. AJ June 26, 2012 at 6:37 pm #

    Uncivilised, uncultured, dangerous, out of step with Australians, ….this comment is of someone who is nothing but a savage. I dont believe in an open door policy either, but there is a way and means that can properly assess people. Letting people die just isnt thinkable!


  8. gerard oosterman June 26, 2012 at 7:05 pm #

    Abbott is not fit for any orifice.


    • doug quixote June 26, 2012 at 7:24 pm #

      Oh, I don’t know gerard; I used to develop pictures of John Howard nearly every morning; and that, oroficially speaking, may be close to the fundament of the question.


    • Jennifer Wilson June 27, 2012 at 7:07 am #



    • Anonymous June 27, 2012 at 3:23 pm #

      you are a goose


      • Jennifer Wilson June 27, 2012 at 3:59 pm #

        I hope that isn’t Helvi showing up as anonymous again!


        • helvityni June 27, 2012 at 4:24 pm #

          No, Jennifer, I’m all sorted, I hated showing up as anonymous, I must be a strange person to feel like this 🙂


  9. paul walter June 26, 2012 at 7:16 pm #

    Yes it’s black thinking and its widespread throughout parliament on both sides. Perhaps it is a racist culture as to asylum seekers at least, probably through to fear of “other” as to immigration in general.
    Your Robert Manne and Julian Burnside types are always facing an uphill battle, as soon as the public settles down, an Alan Jones or Scott Morrison will be out to stir up the fear and anxieties again, as we saw with the Cronulla riots. Even adults are vulnerable to an appeal to baser instincts, I remember myself briefly swallowing the Ruddock Queue-Jumper line when this first broke out a decade ago.
    When you look at the way international relations are generally, you quickly realise that concern for “others” generally doesn’t rate highly when you consider the fractile of a percent of GDP spent of foreign aid for our poorer neighbours, which must be a pitiful fraction of the money wasted on Afghanistan or Iraq, or the vast amounts spent ensuring that asylum seekers fleeing from war zones we are often complicit in the making of, do actually drown at sea, or end up going round the twist in detention centres here or offshore.


    • AJ June 27, 2012 at 11:50 am #

      Hi Paul, I belong to a musical group that plays very 6 weeks at Detention Centre’s. The gig is a non profit for us and was largely driven by the operators who requested us as part of a plan they have to quell boredom and then unrest for detainees of longer duration. It is an interesting visit, we are made very welcome and a great deal of fun and laughter generally arises giving a break to the rather tedious centre existance. Why we do it? Some in the group are motivated by humantiarian reasons, some just like a captive audience (although we arent THAT awful as to need one!) The most eye opening aspect to me is the near criminalisation of detainees that occurs with very controlled eating/sleeping recreation times….something like I would imagine prison life to be. It’s a very strict regime partly introduced by the fear of rioting. Early release and community based placement seems to be the answer, especially for the families with little ones….Why does Australia have such a harsh regime though? Maybe demonisation is a human need in Australia’s population nowdays.


      • paul walter June 27, 2012 at 12:35 pm #

        I tend to think much of it seems related to hard right politics in the USA and its creeping influence through out what used to be the civilised world.
        Welcome to Parchman Farm.


      • paul walter June 27, 2012 at 2:59 pm #

        Once again you are right, The idea of us reaching out rather than being fearful was the underlying point of “Send Them Back to Where They Came From”, the SBS teev doco. Once most of the people in that doco realised some of the realities through experience, the earlier harder lines taken against asylum seekers were dropped.


  10. hudsongodfrey June 26, 2012 at 7:43 pm #

    Like a few of you probably did I watched Q&A last night, and Frankly neither of the politicians Labor or Liberal were in the least way impressive in their bickering over this issue. I suggest Louise Adler and Tim Freedman ought to form a humanitarian party and ought the lot of ’em!


    • gerard oosterman June 26, 2012 at 8:21 pm #

      Yes, what would we not give for a few of the Louise Adlers and Tim Freedmans.
      Those yucky Brandises, Morrisons and Abbotts all so consumed by hatred. What is it? where does it come from? Did their fathers have sweaty feet or did the gutters get blocked. Were the neighbours throwing twigs or leaves over the fences. That scary Darth Vader stare from Julie Bishop. I bet children wet their beds when watching those evil charlatans.


      • hudsongodfrey June 26, 2012 at 8:25 pm #

        Children would have recognised their debating technique. I’ll grant you that much!


      • paul walter June 26, 2012 at 10:08 pm #

        Adler well and truly “did” Brandis. She seems a remarkable woman.


        • helvityni June 26, 2012 at 11:20 pm #

          Agree, I have been impressed with her previous appearances on Q&A, she’s clever, compassionate and she she got a delightful sense of humour…


      • AJ June 27, 2012 at 6:44 am #

        I believe the divisive hatred comes as a carryover from the Howard years. He is fondly remembered by bolted-on unthinking rightists as the master of the wedge. Create a social split and capitalise on the internal fighting that goes on. It’s loathsome politics and definately not geared towards good governance – instead it relies on that other political fact – namely its all about the numbers come election time. Howard had to pander to his working class aspirationals to keep him in office. An issue like this is easily manipulated into an election issue for the me generation and there newly found wealth (primarily via the aquisition of housing on low or no doc loans of that time). Getting back to the issue, I think most Autralian’s are tired of the regurgitation of some of the issues clogging up parliament and want them settled so we can move on and progress Australia in areas being neglected while this red herring occupies parliamentary and media time. We know the answers to them, I for one, would be relievied if they would just implement what needs doing instead of using inertia and squabbling to create headlines.


        • hudsongodfrey June 27, 2012 at 9:24 am #

          I think you’re onto something too AJ, but it’s conventional wisdom in some quarters to say that what Howard did was to look at the Hansonite threat and go with rather than against it in order to ensure voters (particularly Queenslanders) felt their views were reflected by his party. The error, and it is an egregious one, of most politicians since was to think that Hanson’s appeal was to say what she said rather than to say something, anything with conviction and the clarity of somebody whose outlook was naive and in so doing to speak to a sense that there might be a different way forwards. True their are a good number of bigots in Australia to whom her content appeals, but those extremes are in the minority even if they were slightly more so prior to Hanson and Howard than they are now. The centre of the debate has shifted if only slightly to the right then very much for the worse, because of what we’re now seeing that it allows people who regard themselves to be essentially moral to do to others.

          I think the sense we have that government are sometimes in the business of stewardship of a boat they don’t want to rock, beholden as they are to polls and powerful interest groups, robs us of an apparent leadership. And indeed I think it was a failure of leadership on Howard’s part that has been aped ever since by others has seen them fail to lead the country away from bigotry.

          If you look at Rudd I think he was inclined to lead us away from bigotry, but the sense in him that stewardship in the bureaucratic tradition was stronger than statesmanship was palpable. He acquiesced gradually.

          Gillard I think has a little more talent for leadership, but folded to the bigots right out of the gate, when she said that calling racists racists was unhelpful. Sorry Julia but if its true….?
          She should lead away from bigotry and she is failing to do so.

          Abbott may not be ideologically a racist, but the two faced little bastard acts like one so reasons not to call him racist elude me.


          • helvityni June 27, 2012 at 9:34 am #

            There was a little bit more civility in Oz politics (for a fleeting moment) when Rudd and Turnbull were leaders. What can Julia do with opposition that consists of Abbott, Pyne, Morrison,Abetz, Brandis etc….makes me miss people like Moylan, Hewson, and even Brendan Nelson…
            No doubt Howard still has a lot say to Abbott….


            • hudsongodfrey June 27, 2012 at 9:58 am #

              I think there was more civility even through the turbulence of the Whitlam and Fraser years. Maybe its just my age though I’m really not that old, but seeing people of you’re own vintage or slightly younger behaving as they do is beyond unedifying. One starts to hold the entire political class in a kind of contempt.

              It had seemed to me that Bob Brown and possibly Tony Windsor have been among the few who maintained in stature at all in recent years.

              And I can’t resist the urge to sink the slipper into Pyne hoping he’s soon put back in his box.


        • Belinda June 27, 2012 at 11:32 am #

          I think Labor should bring back the Nauru “solution” to show good faith and prove once and for all whether it will work or not. They are behaving just as badly as the opposition in this instant because they don’t want to lose face. Meanwhile people are dying.


          • AJ June 27, 2012 at 12:04 pm #

            What most don’t seem to appreciate about the Nauru solution is that relations between Nauru, Australia, NZ and England soured when the environmental claim for mining damages was made. The Nauruan government is technically bankrupt and although paying for retention of diverted asylum seekers would mitigate that problem I believe there is a general reluctance to do business with the Nauruan Government due to high costs and the risk of an ongoing back hander claim later down the track for some misdeed real or imagined during the time they hosted the detainees. I have fond memories of my childhood there when it was a wealthy nation, largely untouched environmentally and very carefree – almost paradise. Nauru now though is a testament to what happens when a nation relies almost exclusively on income from mining and it aint pretty!


          • hudsongodfrey June 27, 2012 at 12:06 pm #


            Even Robert Manne suggested Manus Is. to the consternation of his confederates. But I don’t see the point in taking people from one place to another and paying all that money to transport accommodate and, unconscionably in my view confine them as we formerly did on Nauru and latterly have on Christmas Island. It is an artifice at best of wanting to deter by punishing the innocent and will not work.

            Better as I have said to process them at the source and by acknowledging the need rather than pandering to bigotry allow the queues to both form and be cleared by lifting the quotas.


            • helvityni July 2, 2012 at 10:04 am #

              If Manne’s suggestion succeeds, the Island could be called Manne Is.Maybe?


          • Marilyn June 29, 2012 at 5:57 pm #

            Oh for fuck’s sake, they are not. Except when we let them.
            and how you moron do you think letting them get here and then sending them to Nauru will save their lives when they are already fucking alive.


  11. doug quixote June 26, 2012 at 8:04 pm #

    Those who ponder the differences between leftists and rightists, or ‘liberal’ v ‘conservative’ if you prefer, read this article in the Global Mail :


    The gulf is apparently wider than you might think.


    • hudsongodfrey June 26, 2012 at 9:00 pm #

      Well thanks for informing us the we’re wasting our time arguing with one another. But I should have known it all along obviously the left is red ink colourblind and the right black ink colourblind.


    • hudsongodfrey June 26, 2012 at 9:07 pm #

      P.S. Doug,

      The comments at the end of the article? Do you think Jane is left or right?


      • doug quixote June 27, 2012 at 7:26 am #

        Regrettably, HG I fear that the Global Mail preaches to the converted only! Right wingers would see their dearly held beliefs challenged far too often for comfort.. BTW I have not commented there, ‘Doug’ is someone else. (“without the registered name and all the details”)


        • hudsongodfrey June 27, 2012 at 8:57 am #

          I was thinking left and who know possibly even a bloke because I detected a humorous bent in the comment.


    • paul walter June 29, 2012 at 7:36 pm #

      Well, I always did suspect St Anthony was a political animal!


  12. helvityni June 26, 2012 at 8:31 pm #

    Didn’t Abbott also say at the time they were fishing the bodies out of sea: Today we are SUPPOSED to grieve. Sadly he’s not only one with an empathy by-pass…I felt sick reading comments on ABC’s Drum Opinion ( Hewson blog)…..
    Posters shouting: they are not asylum seekers, they are economic migrants looking for a better life….how dreadful of them?!


    • gerard oosterman June 26, 2012 at 8:33 pm #

      Without Afghans Australia would be a poorer place:


      • paul walter June 26, 2012 at 10:05 pm #

        Actually has me in mind of my street.
        Early in the decade, the Housing Trust part of it was peopled by white aussies, usually on a “down”. The gardens were crap and the people noisy and inconsiderate, up and down the street. But over time, as the old guard went, the street became home to Africans, West Asians, East Asians and Eastern Europeans, care for the houses improved and there was very little trouble anymore with cops for noise, aggression, drugs, booze, domestics etc.


        • AJ June 27, 2012 at 8:30 am #

          A little reverse racism? In my experience, different cultures have different standards of care and respect, you may have experienced a positive improvement in this area, but in my experience you get good and bad neighbours no matter where they were born.


          • paul walter June 27, 2012 at 8:59 am #

            No doubt. Just remarking on a phenomena I’d noticed.


            • helvityni June 27, 2012 at 9:42 am #

              Just as well we let the Greeks, Italians,Germans and the Dutch in, we now have the lovely Mirabella, Brandis, Abetz… I can’t find any mean Dutchies among our politicians..


              • Forrest Gumpp (@ForrestGumpp) June 27, 2012 at 12:08 pm #

                Van Onselen?


                • helvityni June 27, 2012 at 12:31 pm #

                  FC, I thought of Van Onselen but realised that he was a journo, not a poltician 🙂 He will do…


                  • Forrest Gumpp (@ForrestGumpp) June 27, 2012 at 12:40 pm #

                    I felt so, too. As a member of the Commentariat with evident Dutch antecedents, and cognisant of the place of the Dutch as the tallest ethnicity, statistically speaking, PvO would of course be above politics, would he not?


                  • paul walter June 27, 2012 at 4:42 pm #

                    He’s a Murdoch columnist, which makes him worse than the other two combined.
                    He is also alleged to be an academic,
                    which is surprising, given his inability to “balance” most of his columns at Murdochs.


                  • Forrest Gumpp (@ForrestGumpp) July 2, 2012 at 8:32 am #


                    My tongue was somewhat in my cheek when I earlier nominated Peter van Onselen to fill your claimed apparent vacancy in Australian politics for ‘a mean Dutchie’. (Yes, I knew him to be a journalist too, but these days its all the go to dismiss such status when recognising it would be inconvenient. Just ask Julian Assange or Bob J Carr.) However, look at this item he has penned: http://www.theaustralian.com.au/national-affairs/immigration/coalition-floats-asylum-centres-at-sea-idea/story-fn9hm1gu-1226413915257

                    Would the proposed cruise ship be re-named ‘The Flying Dutchman’, do you think? A plethora of names suggest themselves for a fleet of sister ships: ‘Incredible Hulk’, ‘Nore’, ‘Batavia’, ‘Guilt Dragon’!? (I know, a mis-translation of ‘Verguilt Draak’)

                    The Twitter conversation and source: https://twitter.com/ForrestGumpp/status/219547679489933312


                    • helvityni July 2, 2012 at 9:59 am #

                      FG, I believe there is yet another Dutchman (Dutch parentage), the lovable Andrew Bolt, the ship could be named after him, A Bolted Boat…


      • doug quixote June 28, 2012 at 7:04 pm #

        Agree gerard. Just look at Yalda Hakim on SBS for evidence of what fine people they truly are.


  13. paul walter June 27, 2012 at 9:03 am #

    Just rereading link, what I find jarring is the comment from Tony Abbott, “no point compromising for compromise sake”.
    Why do I find this bloke disturbing?


    • AJ June 27, 2012 at 10:09 am #

      Interesting that the ABC is reporting a potential (albiet slight chance) breakthrough on the border protection issue. The libs are still sticking to their insistence on the Temporary Protection Visa which Labor abolished and it appears this is the sticking point given that Gillard is said to be negotiable on the location of offshore processing. I wasn’t completely across the controversy regarding TPV’s so went to this link for clarification. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Temporary_protection_visa


  14. paul walter June 27, 2012 at 9:30 am #

    Actually that’s an interesting point, AJ. The local undeserving poor were previous scapegoats, now all the fear ‘n loathing is directed at Asians and Africans.


    • Paul Smith June 27, 2012 at 11:00 am #

      Interesting that Indonesia do nothing to stop sinkings that occur in their waters. Anyone with any naval experience realises how easy it would be to stop unseaworthy vessels from leaving any harbour in Indonesia if the will was there.


      • paul walter June 27, 2012 at 2:51 pm #

        Well, should we be lowering ourselves to their level? Do two wrongs make a right?
        I don’t think anyone comes out of this particularly well.
        Indonesia is a poorer country than Oz and a lot of what wealth they do have is tied up by their kleptocracy.
        I also get the impression we are very lax in helping places like Malaysia and Indonesia. We are happy for them them to take on the responsibility for asylum seeker housing, feeding etc, but what little aid we give them, I’d suggest, goes to their suppressive militaries, rather than in compensatory humanitarian aid that would be specifically designed to alleviate distress both for poor locals and the asylum seekers themselves.


      • paul walter June 27, 2012 at 5:44 pm #

        I see you are in strife here. I’d say you are possibly right in suggesting that the Indonesians have looked the other way- as indeed we appear to have done on a number of occasions, including SIEV X.
        I wouldn’t go so far as to suggest there is some sort of secret protocol between us and the Indonesians re “deterrence”, but it does seem there is a hardening of hearts given the inability of countries in the region,over a decade, to come up with something more effective and humane than this pernicious current system .


        • Paul Smith June 27, 2012 at 5:56 pm #

          Without a doubt the Indonesians look the other way and a lot of money changes hands. And you have hit the mark there – how long have dangerously overloaded 20 meter plus boats been able to sneak out of Indonesians harbours undetected? Bit of a security risk for Indonesia if it is so easy to fuel, provision and board a boat undetected. I wonder what a submarine could do?

          Only a fool would beleive that this cannot be stopped in port.


      • Marilyn June 28, 2012 at 3:09 pm #

        But Paul Smith, it is not the job of Indonesia or anyone on the planet to take away the legal right to leave any bloody country they feel like.

        In the latest case though it was Australia entirely at fault for taking 2 days to send out an SÖS and we know Indonesia has no craft for rescues anyway.


        • Paul Smith June 29, 2012 at 9:14 am #

          It is the job of any reasonable government to administer basic maritime law within its own jurisdiction. Port authorities in Indonesia have the right under maritime law to stop any unseaworthy vessel, overcrowded or inadequately provisoned vessel from departing and charging any captain / crew with putting its occupants in danger.

          Not sure how you can so easily construe it is Australia’s fault when the captain set out on a faulty vessel and then refused directions to turn back.


  15. paul walter June 27, 2012 at 12:40 pm #

    ABC just in reports another boat,with 150 people aboard, down in about the same location as the the one earlier in the week.


    • Paul Smith June 27, 2012 at 1:00 pm #

      Yep – approx. 110 – 120 nautical miles south of Jakarta I believe.


  16. George Naumovski June 27, 2012 at 3:54 pm #

    That is the contempt this insect has for people, he is just a disgrace for Australia and no doubt he will have contempt on the Australian people if he is ever elected. We Australians need to make sure that Tony Abbott never becomes PM and boot him out of parliament and his electorate as he is mentally incapable to do anything.


  17. hudsongodfrey June 27, 2012 at 5:08 pm #

    Bullshit Paul,

    You’ve simply decided that the Indonesians are lying without any evidence to support your claim as such.

    And your continued use of an inflamatory tone is an abuse of the hospitality of Jennifer’s blog.

    The only thing hypocritical here is your continued calling me a liar just because you can’t back up the unfounded biased and prejudicial claims which you made at the outset.

    What the hell makes you think I frequent the kind of establishment you’d attend!?


  18. paul walter June 27, 2012 at 7:25 pm #

    A feature of today has been the sense of a polarisation or wedge into deontological and consequential or utilitarian camps within the wider community; away and apart from the diehard Abbott right.
    This is to do with the doubt that the normative and decent approach can occur in the current political and cultural climate and setting and that it might be better to advance a Nauru/Manus/Malaysia etc solution that may relieve stress on Indonesia and alleviate the crowded conditions that make an attempt by boat to Australia inevitable.
    If there is too much of a redneck reaction to onshore processing, it seems to be being argued that a return to offshore processing at one or more of the locations suggested, may relieve congestion and speed up processing. It would require a big effort from Canberra and the Dima/DIC/security bureaucracy to even get a low grade compromise, I suppose.


    • Jennifer Wilson June 27, 2012 at 8:14 pm #

      So we have gone through yet another parliamentary farce today – Oakeshot’s bill will not pass Senate and we will be back where we started, waiting for the next boat to capsize.

      I find myself in agreement with Greens: we ought to be putting money into processing centres at points of origin instead of detention centres here. That will remove the need for asylum seekers to risk boat journeys.


      • Mindy June 27, 2012 at 8:28 pm #

        Then taking a lot more processed refugees so they don’t just sit in camps waiting for decades.


        • hudsongodfrey June 27, 2012 at 8:42 pm #

          Oh Mindy, I like it so much better when we agree about something.


          • Mindy June 27, 2012 at 8:47 pm #



        • Jennifer Wilson June 27, 2012 at 8:45 pm #



      • Marilyn June 28, 2012 at 3:11 pm #

        Not you too? Is everyone fucking stupid? They drowned because we let them not because of anything else.

        Don’t believe that? Go to sievx.com and read the frigging cables.

        214 Afghans were slaughtered last week, a few drowned, get a grip on reality.


        • Jennifer Wilson June 28, 2012 at 6:42 pm #

          Not me too what? If we act more responsibly at the points of origin we won’t be able to let them drown on boats. I don’t agree with the way the debate is framed in the first place, so for me its all crap, but it’s the crap we have to deal with get past and onto something better ie another paradigm that isn’t built around “stop the boats.”


          • hudsongodfrey June 28, 2012 at 7:10 pm #

            Crap is a good word for it indeed. They just can’t get by the Hansonite, Howard adopted rhetoric of “stopping the boats”. The lies and politics around this issue are enough to make a grown man cry.


  19. Mindy June 27, 2012 at 9:23 pm #

    I’m finding nested comments aren’t working well in Firefox tonight.


  20. doug quixote June 27, 2012 at 9:54 pm #

    [ Edit : Jennifer, there seems to be an error here – replies are registered as new comments]


  21. Hypocritophobe June 28, 2012 at 11:36 am #

    I would also like to put on the record that I also believe Indonesia is dragging their arse and not using the boats we provided them, or making a real / consistent effort to save lives.Nor are they showing any honesty or goodwill on this tragedy.

    Until Australia’s leaders(ha ha) DEMAND fair dealings/co-operation with Indonesia and call them out on their corrupt administration, we will always carry the can for their inaction.
    Either we are all in this together or we are a convenient scape goat
    Yes we need to up our refugee intake,change processing,expand it etc, but we cannot be undermined simultaneously by a fake ally.
    That particular mission seems to be Mr Abbott’s hypocritical, coalition one.

    However the coalition does not have a monopoly on spineless grovelling and deliberate political selective blindness.

    Perhaps we could demand that the yanks, with their growing troop numbers and Northern bases, start Indonesian surf patrols to sort this out?
    Can we not satellite track the dedicated patrol craft we donated to Indonesia to see where the hell they are and what they are doing?

    Watch the Greens wear the blame here, no matter what they do.


    • AJ June 28, 2012 at 12:01 pm #

      Theres something wrong with Parliament, particulalry the Senate. The greens are the only one that refuse to compromise at present and are letting ideology stand in the way of saving lives. No one party has the answer but inertia is quite literally death. I am shocked that the Greens are choosing to be obstructive on this….sure, its not what they want but the Oakeshott bill does help get some badly needed action in place. It can always be amended later! I think with a little more forethought the Greens may regret being the scape goat for any further deaths and need to move to get this legislation passed in a pragmatic way. Ideological stubborness is what got us into this mess in the first place (and it wasnt them!) Do they want to go to the next election with blood on their hands?


      • Hypocritophobe June 28, 2012 at 12:39 pm #

        AJ.Your last sentence completely epitomises the ignorance I detest, which led me to use the name Hypocritophobe,

        And from now on I will consider your initials to represent “Alan Jones”.


        • AJ June 28, 2012 at 1:15 pm #

          I appreciate i might have touched a raw nerve for you, but the fact is without the Greens voting to pass this bill through the senate, nothing will change, boats will sink and parliament will adjourn without legislation in place. They need to budge a little. They cannot point the finger anywhere else….on this issue they need to learn a little pragmatism, like they had to with the Carbon Tax legislation.


          • Hypocritophobe June 28, 2012 at 1:42 pm #

            Totally disagree.The senate is the house of review, not a box ticking gab fest.
            There are 3 bullies in this scenario(post departure from the countries of origin)
            Indonesia and both major Aust political parties.
            The current legislation is business as usual Howard style,but going backwards.
            Why do you choose to blame someone not doing the bullying?Why choose then to embellish THEIR bullshit with the blood on hands metaphor?
            Pure unadulterated apologist propaganda.The type which One Nationers hide behind.

            Bong-wind Bishop even had the gall to play the ”refugee convention” card.
            What a shrivelled-up, irrelevant, oxygen wasting hypocrite.


            • AJ June 28, 2012 at 1:51 pm #

              Can I ask you something? Given the lack of time left, what scenario do you see which will quickly resolve the impasse? Im asking for a result here too not an opinion, policy or anything like that, given that Oakshott’s bill has passed the lower house what course of action would be effective in your opinion?


              • Hypocritophobe June 28, 2012 at 2:16 pm #

                The senate should accept the amendments of the ‘blood thirsty greens’.Period.
                It’s called goodwill.It’s the opposite of political posturing by hypocritic gutless arseholes.


                • AJ June 28, 2012 at 2:27 pm #

                  Perhaps they will accept the amendments, but it would be an alarming precedent to have both the Government and Oppostion to accept hollus bollus the green amendments, they are only a minority party remember! That said, Abbott is already on the record as agreeing to increasing intake numbers to 20,000…and the Senate is taking the extraordinary step of looking at a Bill proposed by an Independant! Strange days indeed. They have until the end of the day to sort this out. If the greens amendments arent passed which is a reasonably high chance given the obstinance of the liberals to them, what then would you recommend? Time is ticking


                  • Hypocritophobe June 28, 2012 at 2:37 pm #

                    Why so anti ‘refugee life-saving’ and totally anti green.(‘hollus bollus’)

                    Just implement ALL the greens amendments.
                    You claim stridently such things can be amended later.

                    I see right through the opportunistic way you are using this issue to push your barrow, “Alan, and the ‘blood on hands’ hyperboly, accentuates your rightism.


                    • AJ June 28, 2012 at 2:55 pm #

                      Im not a right winger, so you have misread me there, I am however a pragmatist and aware that the government is failing to come to an resolution. They have one day….I’ll repeat the question, If the Senate doesnt accept the Greens Amendments, what would be the next course of action to get the result needed?


                    • Hypocritophobe June 28, 2012 at 3:00 pm #

                      Reply to AJ June 28, 2012 at 2:55 pm #(No reply button available)

                      You keep demanding ‘your’ time frame.
                      I won’t play that game and hopefully nor will the greens.
                      If the bill falls in the senate the people and their democratically elected swill in both houses share the blame.
                      If your not a ‘right winger’ you will know just how the blame should be apportioned.

                      If you want to run in circles AJ do it without me.


                    • helvityni June 28, 2012 at 5:45 pm #

                      I’m with you, Hypo. I have never been able get a handle on AJ. In my frustration I called her a-two-bob-each-way person. I seem to have the same problem with Mindy, I like people who show their true colours, this way the communication is easier.
                      We had one of our neighbours over for drinks last night, she’s a Liberal, and we are Labor. Gerard and she argued about asylum seekers, then we had another glass of excellent Shiraz she brought over…and all was well. We all know where stand…..


                    • Elisabeth June 28, 2012 at 6:00 pm #

                      I’ve been trying to follow this discussion all day long. It seems to run in many directions and makes me wonder whether I for one might burn out with all this vehemence when it seems clear to me most folks here are on the side of compassion towards and assistance for asylum seekers.


                • paul walter June 29, 2012 at 11:48 am #

                  You can conjecture on Australian politicians as being capable of good will. The medium is so toxic even the better intentioned amongst them
                  seem eventually corrupted.
                  Yet even amongst the reactionaries there is a split. For some, asylum seekers is just another issue to be manipulated for political gain or to operate as a smokescreen for other activities.
                  Yet within others I sense an actual belief that they have it “right’, asylum seekers and “border protection” are important to how a community controls its affairs or defends itself from both the outside hegemonic, homogenising forces and the means by which darker forces conspire to undermine a healthy community.
                  Until the Australian political system is returned out of the hands of big power and big capital formations, the mistrust will continue, as some people suspect more sinister forces at work behind people- movements, based on hidden agendas.
                  In some ways the asylum-seeker debate fronts other concerns to do with the nature of Australia and what it is; a colony, a nation, something alive; something dead, to be avoided, revived, mourned, celebrated, questioned as a subject, or exploited.
                  Racism is key to it, but it is important to the issue to remember that on some levels there is complexity, The asylum seeker debate is also about situational and identity conflicts, alliances, and contests over control of resources within- personal subjectivities come into it, as we’ve seen in the past few threads.
                  It would do us good, be good for our souls, if we could warm to the asylum seekers. Living in Adelaide’s inner west, the buses are now overwhelmingly used by Africans, Sri Lankans and West Asians, most all Hazara. Think of Dvorak’s New World Symphony, look at them, sometimes grieve with them and celebrate their humanity and dignity, often.
                  There has been wave after wave of people arrive in our part of the new world, including our own recent ancestors. The asylum seeker issue won’t be solved quickly, but the long term future is multicultural.
                  But it is important to see Hansonists not (just) as rednecks, to not just unconsciously other them but to recognise them as fellow subjects of the same cultural forces that challenge our own process/progress through life.
                  I don’t get it right most times, first up. Why should I expect better of a Hansonist? No point just grousing at them when they are being anal or defensive because the progressive’s role is instead to figure them out, reassure them, talk them down from heights of their fear and the depths of their pessimism. Many will see that their fears as to asylum seekers were fitful when facilitated to a more reflective frame of mind and they might even be angry on finding out how they were gulled by tabloid politics, press and media, because it’s class warfare also.
                  The dark guy sitting next to you on the train is not the problem, it’s more likely people much further up the food chain who look down on both of you as lab mice in a cage and designate unto themselves the power of God as to the determining of your fate.


                  • Elisabeth June 29, 2012 at 12:01 pm #

                    Thanks Paul Walter for this thoughtful, compassionate and well reasoned response. As the daughter of migrants who came to Australia in the fifties, I can remember the contempt with which certain migrant groups were held, particularly those with darker skin, the Mediterranean folks.

                    In time we grow used to new faces, new styles , new people as they must grow used to us, and it is best not to polarise those who think differently but help to calm them down.


                  • Hypocritophobe June 29, 2012 at 12:58 pm #

                    Whilst I agree with many of your sentiments Paul, and take solace from them, I disagree with one.
                    It goes to what JW said previously about reasoning with conservative Christians,re faith.
                    Hansonite’s are worshippers/believers of their bigotry.
                    And Hansonite’s come in many differing shades..
                    If they don’t breed themselves out of existence then there are two likely scenarios.
                    They will be so swamped by multiculturalism they will either expire as a cultural cancer or they will react (many options there-check out the US)
                    My gut feeling is,like the entrenched multi-generational hate of our indigenous citizens,racist bigotry is here to stay and possibly flourish.
                    There is a ‘get out of jail free card’ on every Australians birth certificate,which reads, “I’m not a racist but”.
                    Some choose not to use it,most do.Many of ‘them’ quite often.
                    It doesn’t mean we shouldn’t have the conversations,but one should not exaggerate the potential for change.
                    Sometimes walking the walk is all we can do.


                    • hudsongodfrey June 29, 2012 at 1:34 pm #

                      Elizabeth, thanks for just being kind.

                      Hypo, I’m mulling a theory. Perhaps like you I think that a solution may be possible but that it disappoints when it seems neither to be the one that stands up to the racist underbelly or persuades Australians to a more measured view of where the limits of compassion ought to lie.

                      The numbers are relatively small and driven overwhelmingly by the factors which people into genuine refugees. So a more measured view would look at those numbers and say that where genuine need meets genuine compassion we can afford to 10,000 or even 20,000.

                      However in the longer term the problem of changing Australian attitudes remains. I think it relies in part at least on Australians seeing themselves as a white enclave surrounded by jealous and inferior Asian neighbours. A truly horrible outlook I’m sure you’ll agree.

                      My theory then is that there’s a tie in between those attitudes and our failure thus far to abandon the Monarchy. I think if we were to do so that it might help to start the process of reformulating the cultural zeitgeist to become in some sense more open what I believe to be the truer picture of Australia as a nation of immigrants.

                      Any thoughts?


      • Mindy June 28, 2012 at 12:47 pm #

        @AJ – I’m not sure the amending later is that easy, which is why the Greens would like it done differently the first time. If we can’t guarantee asylum seeker safety what business do we have sending them to be processed elsewhere?


        • AJ June 28, 2012 at 1:36 pm #

          I think we are out of time, this has been before Parliament for far too long….unresolved in any workable way, times up! I “get” that there are merits to the arguments put, but if you (the Greens) arent the government you can soapbox forever….the time for talk and posturing has passed. This is a humanitarian issue requiring a bipartisan approach and that means giving a little and getting some action happening NOW.


          • Mindy June 28, 2012 at 1:41 pm #

            Are you holding the Coalition to the same standard? Seems to me they could do some compromising but choose not to and then blame the Government. I think they’d rather bring down this Government than compromise and asylum seekers be damned.


            • AJ June 28, 2012 at 1:46 pm #

              I agree, they have been obstructive, stubborn and unhelpful. The only redeeming feature is that a Liberal HOR moved to cross the floor if the independants didnt support the ALP in sufficient numbers and some Lib backbenchers are part of the group that have been pressuring the cabinet and shadow cabinet to get a resolution. That at least means not all of them are Abbott drones….Agree though you would think some Lib in the Senate would see reason too!


      • Marilyn June 28, 2012 at 3:15 pm #

        We started the wars you moron.

        The problem with the Oakeshott so called bill is that it gives the minister alone without appeal of any kind the right to force any country in the world to take refugees who have arrived here only to be rejected – that includes in his equation – Forty-three states and territories in the Asia–Pacific region are “Bali Process countries.” They include the source countries of the major forcibly displaced populations in the region as well as the major host countries. Moreover, eighteen countries from outside the region, including several potential resettlement countries, have been given a place at the table as “Other Participating Countries.” The International Organization for Migration, or IOM, and the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, or UNHCR, which are members of the “Bali Process Steering Group” along with Australia, Indonesia, New Zealand and Thailand, are key players in the Bali Process. Eleven other intergovernmental organisations and processes with relevant mandates are described as “Other Bali Process Organisations” and are also able to participate if they so desire. ”

        What Oakeshott wants is for us to force refugees to 43 of the world’s worst human rights violators without any right of appeal.

        For god’s sake do the public have to be cretins forever.


        • hudsongodfrey June 28, 2012 at 3:26 pm #


          If we need a one-off response then I can’t see why not simply do the part that they all claim to support, which is lifting the quotas. We could then open up those additional places to the people who would otherwise come in boats anyway and drop the insistence on wanting to “deter” people from coming. The indications that there are so called “pull factors” are a fanciful construct of Australian xenophobia that have absolutely nothing to do with saving lives. It is so frustrating!


    • Paul Smith June 28, 2012 at 2:54 pm #

      Hear hear. Well stated.


    • hudsongodfrey June 28, 2012 at 3:16 pm #

      Hello Hypo,

      Clearly the Indonesian coastal services don’t appear to be using the boats we already provided. Not that I’m sure those boats were large enough in size to be useful on this occasion. And not that this doesn’t beg questions as to how come the asylum seeker boats decided to embark in such rough conditions.

      Similarly I don’t know whether the boats given the Indonesians have found there way into other areas of service within the vast chain of Islands that make up their territory. Maybe they’re helping prevent illegal fishing, saving surfers, stopping drug smugglers or part of anti terrorism activities of Bali somewhere?

      Maybe the questions about how we should know are secondary to those about whether we’ve the right to ask. Can we infer from the gift of assistance an expectation that Indonesia should or even would be party to our policies aimed at thwarting asylum seekers’ claims?

      If we know that Indonesia is corrupt then what expectations should we have formed anyway? Corruption has many forms both overt and covert. I tend to think of Australia as a bit like the old Mae West quote, “I used to be as pure as the driven snow, but I drifted.” This hardening of our hearts an policies around asylum seekers is both unnecessary on the numbers alone, and corrosive to the point of almost completely undermining any sense of moral superiority we might have held over Indonesia.

      I see the sources of your complaints and mine going more or less hand in hand. How can we stand up to the Indonesian government and expect so much better of them, a very much less developed nation, when we a first world country so as little moral fibre as to basically want them to “stop the boats” for us.

      I’m not saying I want to let them off the hook entirely in this matter, but I seriously do doubt that we’ve evidence implicating them in major wrongdoing, and nor while we’re looking at them are we facing the questions we should be asking ourselves as to why we persist in these hateful anti boat policies.


      • Hypocritophobe June 28, 2012 at 3:57 pm #


        The size of the boat is only relevant in that the Indos seem to have a place big enough to hide them away.Or are their generals using them for fishing trips?

        I am not advocating these boats be used for stopping boats,but saving lives.
        And using the opportunity to eliminate the kingpins of the trade.
        And on that front people smuggling (in this debate) is a real issue which could not exist without Indo corruption.Yes, as Marilyn states, we contribute to the creation of refugees in the first place, by our participation/validation of regional and other conflicts.
        BUT, as far as unnecessary,unacceptable deaths at sea,and whilst the boats still come, Indonesia is also culpable.

        I think we’d all agree that we need to reduce or halt the need for anyone to flee their homeland.

        And then there’s the world population debate……sustainable development…..etc.
        All connected.The boats will not be thinning out any time soon, and nor will the sleaze-bags selling tickets.

        And for AJ,
        As I said above
        if the two major parties were coming from a base of ‘honest concern and compassion’ I think the greens would be the first to capitulate.
        The coalition of the shrilling are peddling bullshit to cling to, or gain power,Nothing more.


        • hudsongodfrey June 28, 2012 at 4:21 pm #

          I’m not going to argue your points tooth an nail because they’re not invalid, I just think that they’re in the background to the core problem which is all about asylum seekers wanting to reach Australia and Australians who are unwilling to let that happen.

          I don’t think that the Greens should back down and acquiesce to a system whereby legislation is hastily rushed through that will enable refugees to be sent to any of 43 non signatory countries.

          What will it take to stop pandering to the bigots and xenophobes in this country? That’s the real question, the rest pale into insignificance while Abbott twiddles his thumbs and says “so be it”!


          • Hypocritophobe June 28, 2012 at 8:06 pm #

            Well HG whatever it takes to silence bigots and zealots will render this place a near on ghost town.
            We still hate indigenous people for fun.


  22. Mindy June 28, 2012 at 11:43 am #

    “their eyes naturally fall on those countries that are parties to the 1951 Convention Relating to the Status of Refugees, and that have a history of treating refugees with some decency. Australia falls into this category, and is therefore a natural destination.” from Bill Maley in the Canberra Times.
    Can only imagine how awful the conditions they are fleeing if risking everything on a boat to get to Immigration detention here is worth it.


  23. Mindy June 28, 2012 at 11:45 am #

    @helvi – I think it is something awry with the blog not you not pressing reply; replies go on the end of the post, new comments somewhere in the middle.


    • Jennifer Wilson June 28, 2012 at 12:11 pm #

      They are supposed to be nesting.


      • Mindy June 28, 2012 at 12:17 pm #

        Replies to you last night seemed to nest okay, replies to anyone else went to the bottom of the comment thread. New comments seem to get stuck in the middle. Unless it is crappy browser I am using? IE.


        • Mindy June 28, 2012 at 12:48 pm #

          But now last comment to AJ nested properly? I give up!


      • hudsongodfrey June 28, 2012 at 3:19 pm #

        With all of the best intentions I believe some (or at least one comment) that was Trashed yesterday has upset the ordering of the thread. The comment was made to me and appeared in the notifications pull down from the wordpress toolbar at the top of my page. To add to difficulties I may have replied to it anyway because it still appears in that list though not on the main page.


  24. AJ June 28, 2012 at 3:15 pm #

    Reply to Hypocritophobe June 28, 2012 at 3:00 pm #

    Beautiful non answer, you are as aware as I am that today is the deadline before Parliament recesses – its not my time frame – its there’s. Given your propensity for not answering the question perhaps you should consider a political career? You have the talent for avoiding answers. I dont understand the dummy spit though, it was a straight forward enough question wasnt it?


    • Hypocritophobe June 28, 2012 at 10:32 pm #

      Bullshit.Nice cop out, AJ.
      I answered your taunts many times.
      The greens are principle driven.You, and whoever it it is you wave your pom -poms for are not.But do keep shopping around till you get an answer you can ‘tolerate’. But it looks increasingly like it won’t have my finger prints on it.
      Deal with it.


  25. Hypocritophobe June 28, 2012 at 9:14 pm #

    “The coalition will NEVER support Malaysia”
    Groaned the Roman Catholic Abbott with the obsequious,sycophantic Dog-Whistler ‘extraordinnaire’ Spot Morrison nodding in the background.

    Sure thing.
    There will NEVER,EVER be a GST either.


  26. paul walter June 29, 2012 at 2:31 pm #

    hudsongodfrey, your comment 1.34 is a mellow one also. I’d think of it as a useful companion to Marilyn’s about how the West, of which Australia is a part, has been ruthless in pursuit of its objectives in what used to be called the Developing World, creating the chaotic conditions that create people movements globally. But a bit like Heart of Darkness, we don’t like acknowledging where the trail leads, eventually people realise the bones we find are the ones we had left in the first place thus the consequent furtive alibiing and apportioning of blame and responsibility for making amends comes into play. All the baser stuff of human nature comes out in this process.
    I think you and Hypo are right to to observe the curious role of cultural superstructure in the mix, As Hypo says, we’ve come to believe that we are exceptional, for no better reason than we are aussies. Hudson notes the Monarchy and you could move to the supplementing of the original meme involving our post ww2 relationship with the new dominant of “our” culture, the USA. “We”- the “normal” and talented, build rockets, others sit under coconut trees waiting for the nuts to fall off, if we notice them at all.
    Again, the doco “Send them back where they came from” shows what an effort it can be to get people like Australians to hold back and avoid judgement for a moment, to face up.
    Elisabeth, thanks for your kind remarks, I grew up in a similar environment in the SA Industrial town/sub of Elizabeth which was a real melting pot of a place where industrial workers from northern Europe, blue collar aussies and welfare cases were supplemented by infeeds into the schools from the Mediterranean market garden families that abounded north of Adelaide, who were at the bottom of the food chain, unless you picked the wrong one in a fight and found yourself forced to revise your opinion of their capabilities. The old women dressed head to toe and scarfed in black were the fifties/ sixties equivalent to today’s burqa wearing mossie women, so exceptional as to incite much curiosity, suspicion and sometimes derision, perhaps more so from proddies and secularists.


  27. Hypocritophobe June 29, 2012 at 4:34 pm #



    New game for Randling.
    “Psychopath/Megalomaniac or both”

    The Libs are the only ones who can save themselves now.
    Abbott has gutted their minuscule souls.


  28. Hypocritophobe June 29, 2012 at 4:37 pm #

    It seems when I posted just then (with link to ABC story on Abbotts refusal to budge) my comment ended up in mid field.


  29. Hypocritophobe June 29, 2012 at 5:45 pm #

    What a monumental disaster.
    Abbott has outsmarted Gillard again.She/Labor should have gone with the Greens amendments in full, and worried about the tweaking later.
    Abbott scores points,people keep drowning.
    Gillard is either an idiot or is weak.There is no logic to explain this failure to act.
    Forming a committee?
    Go figure.
    This reinforces what her critics and the fence sitters constantly espouse.
    The farming lobby and the small business lobby are about to add to Gillards woes.
    Labor is now there own worst enemy and should never have played politics on this of all issues.
    Sorry DQ, but it’s RIP Julia.Even if for some reason Abbott does vaporise.
    He could be mute and invisible (please) from now till the next election and still out-poll her.She owns yet another failure.


    • doug quixote June 29, 2012 at 7:52 pm #

      No skin off my nose, Hypo. I like Julia as PM and she is far and away better than Abbott or Rudd. But certainly not perfect and not possessed of a magic wand.

      These issues have no good solution.

      Only least-bad “solutions”.


      • Hypocritophobe June 29, 2012 at 8:09 pm #

        I know DQ.
        But for those of us who find an Abbott government an abomination, and who value many of ‘old’ Labor’s core values (old being up till about 2009, when the plot was lost) it smarts to see any Labor govt lose it’s grip in this way, as they crash from one burning tree to the next.
        I’d say we (our community) are headed for a lot more than skin loss unfortunately.
        As I keep saying,I would never vote for Abbott,but the new right Labor has lost me and many others.Lately every time Abbott moves further right, Gillard’s Labor tries to jump over him (to the right).

        Form a committee?Pay a fortune for a 3 man diversion to tell us the bleedin’ obvious.
        I wonder if we get a multiple choice option at the end.
        F3ck me.Daft, dafter,daftest.
        In 6 weeks of Canberra break, if they cannot crucify any Libs over the Slipper and Thomson sagas I think we may well see a worse electoral massacre than QLD.
        I really do.


        • doug quixote June 29, 2012 at 9:00 pm #

          With respect to those who obsess over this issue, it really is a rather minor issue in the grand scheme of things, and one which any intelligent person should be able to see has no good solution.

          The right scream about border protection, as if that is an issue – they want to be found, and are found, 2000 km from the Australian mainland!!!!

          The left scream about the bodies, as if anything we do could stop desperate people taking desperate measures!!!!

          Give me a fucking break.


          • Hypocritophobe June 29, 2012 at 9:43 pm #

            “With respect to those who obsess over this issue, it really is a rather minor issue in the grand scheme of things, and one which any intelligent person should be able to see has no good solution.”

            Guess I’ll crawl back into my pleb box then DQ.
            Looks like it’s back to figuring out the important stuff like who Shakespeare really was…


            • doug quixote June 30, 2012 at 5:27 am #



            • doug quixote June 30, 2012 at 5:31 am #

              But my point was that as an election issue it is a minor one unless a boat or two sinks during the election campaign itself. Most of the Voters have the memories of glorified goldfish.


              • Hypocritophobe June 30, 2012 at 9:46 am #

                Don’t worry DQ,no matter how small the issue,the fork tongued ones will make it enormous.
                And there will be this big Abbottonian finger banging on the glass,each and every day to wake the goldfish up for their daily dose of déjà vu
                Perhaps this is what ‘they’ mean when they say purgatory?

                I am fully convinced that the Libs policy is to make Abbott so unbearable, the voters think that the only way to shut him up is to vote him in.(Kind of like bullying)
                No-one wants another 4 years of his opposition persona.(not even 4 minutes)


  30. hudsongodfrey June 29, 2012 at 6:20 pm #

    Julian Burnside to the rescue! Not the first time I’ve found the man hard to disagree with.


    • Hypocritophobe June 29, 2012 at 6:33 pm #

      He has some interesting things to say(Twitter) about Assange,

      “19 Jun julianburnside julianburnside ‏@JulianBurnside

      Support Assange by emailing Ecuador Embassy in London: ecugranbretania@mmrree.gob.ec and ask them to help him”


  31. Hypocritophobe June 30, 2012 at 2:39 pm #

    Remember Strop from the paul Hogan Show?
    And Popeye?

    Here’s our version of both,rolled into one…


    I would hardly call Bishop Olive Oil, though.
    Maybe Snake Oil.


  32. Hypocritophobe July 10, 2012 at 11:13 am #

    Downer fills another gap in the xenophobic mantra;



  33. Hypocritophobe July 18, 2012 at 5:12 pm #

    As was noted earlier, Indonesia’s military is also adorned with people smugglers friends.



    • Paul Smith July 20, 2012 at 12:59 pm #

      Extremely glad you posted these articles H which highlight exactly the point I made re corruption in Indonesia facilitating these dangerous departures.


  34. Hypocritophobe July 24, 2012 at 8:17 pm #

    Quick call Tony, he will stop them.


    Personally I fail to see the attraction.


  35. Anonymous January 29, 2013 at 12:19 pm #

    You only have to Google Abbott on deaths at sea and you will find plenty of other occaisons where Tony Abbott has said this or things very close to this with the same meaning. He is happy to let asylum seekers drown. Wake up Australia this man is not fit to be PM of this country.


    • Jenny Haines January 29, 2013 at 12:21 pm #

      Sorry I thought I put my name in here Jenny Haines


    • Hypocritophobe January 29, 2013 at 12:40 pm #

      Gillard is equally unfit if you base your judgement on the same criteria.
      It seems some people are happy to see the refugees perish elsewhere or in war,famine or someone else’s camps.
      Out of sight,out of mind.The treatment of refugees is certainly not an area where Gillards groupies get to claim any humanitarian principles or moral high ground.
      If you listened to their outcries and scathing reprisals of Howard,you’d think the current faux Labor lot had erased their entire consciences, like deleting the contents of a hard drive.
      By all means criticise Abbott, but try to find a shining example of the opposite somewhere.Gillard is not it.


      • hudsongodfrey January 29, 2013 at 12:55 pm #

        See this is one of those issues I’m concerned would be cemented into acceptability within mainstream Australia if Abbott were to take government. I never liked Rudd, but he was it seems better than Gillard on this issue.


        • Hypocritophobe January 29, 2013 at 1:49 pm #

          Either option is in lockstep with the other.
          Worse, Gillard has enabled refugee hate, which is something Labor never had as a ‘position’ before.I hope for the voters this is a deal breaker,but the generational racism is likely to see this as the least important to most of the rusted ons.

          “We decide” etc, always was their favourite Howard speech.


          • hudsongodfrey January 29, 2013 at 2:08 pm #

            Could agree more, but only a little. It is indeed my biggest criticism of Gillard’s leadership that she chose on at least two counts to go towards rather than away from bigotry, asylum policy and gay marriage.



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