Abbott. Joggers. Respect the human!

2 Nov

I read in the Global Mail yesterday that Tony Abbott is conspicuously subdued in Parliament at the moment, leaving the aggression to others and even letting Malcolm Turnbull ask a question.

(An aside: I returned to the Global Mail after it saw sense and went vertical instead of horizontal. I can’t be doing this left-right, east-west thing. Like the Kuuk Thaayorre of Cape York I prefer to use cardinal directions and say I’m a north-south kind of woman when it comes to scrolling).

While it can only be good to be freed from the holistic assault of Abbott’s strident and inanely repetitive aggression, it won’t be long before we get thoroughly sick of the rest of them picking up where he left off. We are heading into an election year. It’s time for the LNP to put forward some serious policies. In other words, it’s time for the LNP to treat the voters with some respect. They aren’t generally big on respect, especially for respect for women, preferring instead to operate from a position of entitlement. Respect and entitlement are not happy bedfellows, but sadly, for many who attain positions of public power  a sense of entitlement overrules a sense of  common humanity.

Speaking of respect, after a few months in the city I’ve had it with people bearing down on me, completely oblivious to my presence because they are obsessively focused on their phones. Innumerable are the times I have skipped to the side to avoid a collision, but no more. As of yesterday I’m standing my ground. I expect injury. I expect to be knocked down by men twice my size who probably won’t even notice they’re walking over me because they’re texting.

The ways in which we use public space have changed drastically since the advent of mobile phone technology and jogging. Once it was relatively safe to be a walker. Now there’s hardly anything relaxing about it at all. Strolling through the Sculptures by the Sea exhibition we were assailed by dripping joggers who seemed quite prepared to shove us off the cliffs rather than slow down, some even muttering “Move over for fuck’s sake” as beads of their rank sweat landed on our arms and faces.

On the question of the use of public space, there’s an excellent piece in the New York Times Review of Books, July/August 2012, on the decline of libraries in England. Author Zadie Smith points out the lamentable lack of public space where one can safely be without having to fork over any money for the privilege. Libraries are one such rare space and in England, they are rapidly decreasing as councils sell them off  to developers for upmarket housing, because they aren’t considered “profitable.” Libraries are becoming obsolete. The argument made by technocrats is that people can find anything they want on the Internet, so why do they need the physical reality?

This economic and technocratic rationalisation again has no respect for humanity. Libraries offer much more than books. A library is a holistic experience. It offers an engagement for the senses that cannot be matched by the Internet. As a young girl, the library was for me a refuge, a temporary sanctuary from dysfunction, a safe place where I could lose myself in the sight, feel and smell of books that offered me other perspectives of other worlds. I could not have found this on the Internet, had it existed at that time, because apart from anything else, I would have had to stay in the physical reality of an unsafe home.

As Smith puts it: “…emotion also has a place in public policy. We’re humans, not robots…[libraries] are the only thing left on the high street that doesn’t want either your soul or your wallet.”

Politicians are in general pitifully lacking in respect for the people who put them where they are. What they should take from the results of the last election is that we are fed up with this attitude from all sides. Respect the human, is the message they need to take on board. We are not robots. We don’t like or want aggressive, repetitive sound bytes. We want policies. We want respect.

128 Responses to “Abbott. Joggers. Respect the human!”

  1. Jan Dobson November 2, 2012 at 9:06 am #

    Ms Wilson, you’re my kind of thinker. Ideas jumping from one thing to another with no obvious juxtaposition, loved what you had to say.
    I don’t think we can be voracious enough in calls for the LNP to put forward treasury costed policies Now.
    Equally, while Tony Abbott is the spokesperson for the Coalition, those lurking in the background – backbenchers, apparatchiks, party members need to speak up or accept responsibility for and complicity with his actions and views.
    And if you could speak to ebook publishers about north south scrolling, that would be great too


    • Jennifer Wilson November 2, 2012 at 9:10 am #

      Hello, Thanks for that, Jan. Maybe it’s time for a petition to ebook publishers


      • helvityni November 3, 2012 at 10:35 am #

        Good to see you back, Jennifer. Some of us sneaked into your place while you were gone. The doors were left open…


  2. Mindy November 2, 2012 at 9:17 am #

    I love my local library. It has internet access for people who don’t have easy access, and it is free. They have books for me to browse through taking time to make my selection. The library only times out when it is closing time not randomly through the whim of Telstra. I can relax with a book and no one asks me for things, where something is, or what I am doing and why won’t I help with x, y or z. It is an oasis. Also in winter they have a lovely heater and in summer the aircon is wonderful so it’s nice just to nip in and warm up or cool down depending on the weather. Plus the staff are lovely. Can’t get that on the internet.


    • Marilyn November 2, 2012 at 4:29 pm #

      My local library is a 100 year old castle in the Barossa Valley, it has an amazing all in the back where I love to hide and stroll around.

      I can make pre orders of all new books and get them 10 times faster than I could in Adelaide.

      Scroll down to Angaston.

      WE have an online service called library press display where we can read hundreds of newspapers cover to cover on line and lovely librarians.

      I have loved libraries since the small institute library opened in Pinnaroo when I was a kid.

      If I want a special order they will do it and so on.

      I do wish people would stop the Abbott thing and look at what that racist coward Gillard is doing to this country though.


      • paul walter November 3, 2012 at 7:46 am #

        I do wish people would stop the Gillard thing and look at what that racist coward Abbott is doing to the country, but…
        Do you not see the system for what it is, despite your brains?
        It’s the system.


      • Hypocritophobe November 3, 2012 at 1:26 pm #

        Marilyn,Apparently it is considered acceptable to the die-hards to excise our Nation from the map.
        Despite this immoral 180 degree backflip,it seems according to Labor,that all that squealing about Howards refugee policy stance was just opportunistic bullshit.
        Gillard Howard looks set to ‘out Workchoice’, Workchoices at this rate.Mind you foreign labourers will change the employment landscape first.
        Now Ferguson wants to sue Oakeshott for telling him the truth.
        What a bunch of brain dead impostors Labor has become.

        The most excruciating denial is that Labor are ‘not’ their own worst enemy.In reality they are, by their own behaviour and actions, actually working to install a coalition minority government,which even if lasting only one term MAY just open the door for a complete coalition victory in both major houses, following that result.
        ( if that is what the MSM want.)And a double dissolution combined with toxic MSM bullshit CAMPAIGN will help deliver just that.
        Faux Labor and the cheer squad relying on public hate for an Abbott defeat, is the most abysmal cop out I have ever heard.
        And to be compared,there needs to be radical difference.There aint.


  3. annodyne November 2, 2012 at 9:34 am #

    There are a few books that Abbott needs to read, that’s for sure.
    Libraries have always been an oasis and a refuge for me too Mindy and JW. The tiny country one that was my childhood refuge exists no longer, replaced by a mobile weekly book truck. I am so lucky to now live where there is a historic Mechanics Institute library I belong to, and a community library with a huge history reference room that has no running screaming children throwing things at each other.
    May I commend a virtual visit to:


  4. Hypocritophobe November 2, 2012 at 9:59 am #

    We recently went to an outdoor concert in Perth (Mumford and Sons et al)
    Asked at the gate for all sorts of paraphanlia.
    Got drugs?Got knives?Got a camera ?
    But every man and his dog had a smart phone.
    And boy they weren’t afraid to use them,and drag them out every 10 seconds before during and after the concert.Texting dl-ing,happy snaps,catch-ups and just FIGJAM just look at me.Looking down at the mosh pit was like looking on a pit of narcissistic fire flies.
    I consider this public phone flaunting trend/fascination to be gadget masturbation for automatons and dweebs.
    Get ready for the collisions JW.Carry a few freezer bags of fish sauce or custard(both) and a change of clothes.F*ck the ignorant/rude arseholes.
    Cover them in shit, or better, aim for the goolies with a strategic placed knee.It’s your street too.


  5. paul walter November 2, 2012 at 11:26 am #

    “North south scrolling”? Of course we scroll “north south” it’s down south that we find the treasure unrevealed but for exploration, against the resistance of the unyielding “north”, who is persuaded through patient effort to yield up her secrets.
    This is a virtual reading room of silent, reading women, v Quaker, abundant of widow’s peaks.
    A lone male voice this , battling the fog of inscrutability to recall his own return to his sandstone local library this week, in between visits the Chamber of Horrors, the dentist.
    It was all there just as I remembered it: vinegar-pussed librarians, old duffers clutching newspapers in triumph smug with satisfaction at having collared the favoured version soon enough to thwart other patrons.
    And all the electronic clutter, serried ranks of computers, headphones, printers and so forth- there’s the difference.
    The benefit came in a reacquaintance with a long lost companion of youth long evaporated, the other wise pay-walled Murdoch Australian.
    Discounting the guff emanating from the opeds and decoding the slants, a newspaper definitely can still be a genuine source for actual news.
    A la recherche a temps perdue.


  6. paul walter November 2, 2012 at 11:47 am #

    Buried away late at night there is a patchy Australian effort called, “The Librarians”, on ABC TV. At its best it’s a laugh, with its contrasting of a surface order with internal dysfunction.
    Reminiscent of the old BBC comedies from the sixties, it scrolls from existential pathos through collapse and farce to bathos and back, as represented in events involving its cast of characters, from anally-driven control freak librarians and meglomaniac bureaucrats, through nitwits and the pathologically irredeemable, to bawdy lushes and wordly opportunists.


    • Jennifer Wilson November 3, 2012 at 7:17 am #

      Mrs Chook is a librarian, and we watched that series with glee.


      • paul walter November 3, 2012 at 7:37 am #

        Strange lot. aren’t they? Given the likely size of the show’s budget, it has actually punched way above its weight,


        • helvityni November 3, 2012 at 10:16 am #

          I quite liked The Librarians, I thought at first that it was an English show, so much better than many Aussie efforts.
          We watched the second time repeats of Summer Heights High, and I still find them top class. I love Chris Lilley’s work…


  7. Poirot November 2, 2012 at 12:05 pm #

    Got to say that in the regional centre where I live (in WA) we’ve had a huge new library built – so we’re obviously bucking the trend here.

    On the subject of mobile phones. Recently I was waiting for my son to finish his drama class. In the little foyer where I waited there were five members of the senior class waiting for their session to begin – and instead of talking “to each other” each of them was engaged with their phones communicating with other people….strange days indeed!


    • helvityni November 3, 2012 at 10:31 am #

      Standing on escalators at shopping malls or train stations, I’m shaking with fear. Everyone is running up up/down fast whilst at the same time fiddling with their phones, I’m scared they’ll knock me down, so now I prefer to use lifts instead, even if they make me feel somewhat claustrophobic; I’m like Sybil’s mum (Fawlty Towers), suffering from open places, closed up places, heights, lows…


  8. Sam Jandwich November 2, 2012 at 1:09 pm #

    Hello Jennifer! Good to see the big city hasn’t totally depleted you. Take care won’t you.

    My local library and community centre has also recently been rebuilt, and has a cafe and a selection of foreign language newspapers available. Always gives a really nice impression of community to see old people sitting around together and enjoying the place. (oh, It also has an unexpectedly good collection of books about post-punk music and associated cultural phenomena!).

    But really it’s the sense of community that’s lacking. My confession for the day is that I am having a full-blown adulterous platonic affair with a uni student almost 15 years my junior. one thing that fascinates me about her is that she seems to have no notion whatsoever of cultural normatives having any hold on her way of doing things – ie, the kind of stuff that we talk about here all the time. She has grown up in a secular post-feminist world, in which the paramount concern is to observe the world and what it has to offer, to discriminate between instances of real meaning and instances of someone else trying to have you on, and to make one’s own decisions about what’s important. Her primary responsibility is to herself, and to the people who mean something to her. She has a beating heart, but the rest of the world is just an oyster. I wonder whether her world-view is typical of her generation and demographic, and thus the source of people walking around without looking where they’re going.

    But isn’t this what we’ve been aiming for all this time??


    • Jennifer Wilson November 3, 2012 at 7:16 am #

      “full-blown adulterous platonic affair” you are full of surprises, Sam. 🙂


      • samjandwich November 5, 2012 at 12:47 pm #

        Hmmm, well when you start off with something so conventional it’s not that hard to surprise people 🙂

        I tell you what though, I’ve figured out the main reason I’m pursuing this is probably not so much that I’m connecting with a particularly spectacular example of the enlightened, acultural generation, but that it’s a latent attempt to inject some drama into my life. 20-year-olds are so difficult to deal with!!


  9. 8 Degrees of Latitude November 2, 2012 at 3:21 pm #

    Right on, Jennifer! I’m not often in the Special Biosphere (or other blighted bits of Planet Moi) but I can attest from visits that it is indeed no longer to walk in Drone Space. Thinking of others (first, preferably) is a dead art. And as for libraries … again, I’m with you. Quiet collegiality is also a dying practice. Shame.


  10. doug quixote November 2, 2012 at 6:46 pm #

    Vertical has to be the way to go; I don’t know about you, dear reader but my mouse scrolls up and down quite well; it finds side to side a challenge.


    • paul walter November 3, 2012 at 12:14 am #

      It wouldn’t if it had its neck caught in a mouse trap. Side to side would be all, then, if it was lucky.


  11. Macabre November 2, 2012 at 10:45 pm #

    What’s wrong with you lot lately! You get a feisty woman leader who’s got the balls to stand up to that bastard Abbott and spread him all over the floor and all you can do is whinge about this and that and the effing other, whinge whinge whinge.

    You’re all a pack of effing Marilyns on yer effing high effing horses.

    Get real! Go Gillard! Go Girl!


    • Mindy November 3, 2012 at 9:22 am #

      I think I am perfectly entitled to cheer Gillard’s successes against Abbott while still deploring her government’s actions on refugees.


      • Hypocritophobe November 3, 2012 at 9:58 am #

        You mean the unelected PM representing a xenophobic country,(member of the UN security council,no less) which now longer exists?


        • Ron Savage November 3, 2012 at 11:35 am #

          Aaaaarrrrggghh! You’re a bunch of wimpettes.

          What the govt should have done is excise from the Migration Zone everything except AAT (Australian Antarctic Territory)!

          Then if boat people could sail their leaking boats thru the Roarin’ Forties and land on ice floes, we’d have ’em trapped in a climate diametrically opposite to where they’d come from!

          That would show ’em!


      • annodyne November 3, 2012 at 11:54 am #



      • paul walter November 3, 2012 at 1:58 pm #

        Quite so Mindy..couldn’t agree with you more.
        developing on your idea, a person could say it one of many issues , one piece in a jigsaw puzzle. To judge a government on a single issue when it it is but one apple in a barrel is fraught with risk for the overall picture on which a person eventually discusses, acts upon etc. So like yourself, I also applaud Gillard on her genuine achievement such as helping to retain Australia’s stance as secular and objectivist.
        I suppose there then comes the dull work of deciding what the raft or basket of issues is upon which people might judge a government.
        An inventory or list might include asylum seekers- both fail.
        Aboriginal policy- both fail.
        Overall social policy Labor poor, Tories even worse.
        economic management- Unable to say, we can can say that offshore conservative government have been more eager to impose austerity against an easier run for the already wealthy- by implication we could hazard a guess that Labor is a little more kindly than Abbott/Tea Party type conservatives, although we will never know, since the last five years have now past. And so it would go…enviro, education, health, science etc, etc.
        Presumably some feel the opposite to Mindy, who did not include her assessment of Abbott Asylum seeker policy.
        A Hansonist for example might deplore Gillard’s hobbling of Abbott, but be more satisfied with population policy than a progressive, asking why is it our problem?
        And even amongst progressives there may be differences of opinion. Should a government take action on an unpopular issue and risk losing the lot, or hold fast in order to avoid losing all?
        Definitely gets tricky,after a bit..


  12. annodyne November 3, 2012 at 12:00 pm #

    aaaargh. my comment above was DITTO to Mindy: “I think I am perfectly entitled to cheer Gillard’s successes against Abbott while still deploring her government’s actions on refugees”

    and for those who loved The Librarians as I did, I hope you did not miss Very Small Business from all the same wonderful people around Wayne Hope and Robyn Butler. The reality, intelligence, performances, pace, and dark wit, were all equal to the most lauded UK work.
    We must support entertainers who get away from the incessant depiction of violence on TV. Mine stays off for days at a time.


  13. Hypocritophobe November 3, 2012 at 2:53 pm #

    Watch this space apologists for both Tea Parties.There is an elephant in the room and guess who is not talking about it BEFORE an election.


    • Macabre November 3, 2012 at 6:27 pm #

      You wouldn’t know a Tea Party if you fell over one. Wait until the elephant in the room sits on your effing face, Hypocrite – then go screaming “Julia come back, all is forgiven!” Whinge all you like if and when you help Abbott into the Lodge. Right in your element then.


      • Hypocritophobe November 3, 2012 at 6:34 pm #

        Do you actually think I DON’t know who you are?

        So tempting to expose you, you Richard Cranium .

        To do,or not to do,that is the question.


        • Macabre November 4, 2012 at 10:17 am #

          OMG! I might be exposed! How thrilling! Do tell, O Hypocrite, I could use a laugh.


          • Hypocritophobe November 4, 2012 at 10:45 am #

            You need a manager,not a laugh.
            Stop digging, silly man.


            • Macabre November 4, 2012 at 11:09 am #

              Man?? Not even in the right half of the world’s population!

              My mussel is flexing. No paralytic shellfish toxin as yet, though I may make an exception for some.

              I really don’t know what DQ and Jennifer sees in you.

              You’re probably Christine Milne in Gina Rinehart’s trackydaks.


              • Hypocritophobe November 4, 2012 at 1:17 pm #

                Paralytic alright.
                You have heard the result of weaving tangled webs,have you not?
                Despite the last piece of (desperate) fictional smokescreen you put up,I think you should just sidle away quietly,lest the general truth come out.
                Going forward, you(and that is the other you, as well) would need a Teflon transplant to your face,or you will remain egg faced for the foreseeable future.
                Subterfuge is not your strongest suit, silly man.

                Nice try(not)


  14. Hypocritophobe November 5, 2012 at 12:01 am #

    Julia is out of town and Charley is in town.
    Looks like no hand shake, this time around.

    Maybe she thinks he’s the Dalai Lama ?

    (BTW; Yes,I am a supporter of a ‘real’ Australian republic.)


    • paul walter November 5, 2012 at 9:32 am #

      God knows what that might mean.
      An elected head of state, like Kyle Sandilands or Gina Rinehart as prez, and Lara Bingle or Seal for veep.
      Are they right about Gina Rinehart in Christine Milne’s trackies…nah, too much, back to bed.
      Macabre, it’s an awesome thing, this elephant in room. Very bad indeed if it farted, worse if it had the trots.


      • Hypocritophobe November 5, 2012 at 11:21 am #

        So you don’t think Macabre(hahahaha) should be brave and use their real name while abusing those of differing views?
        (I like your puerile school-yard humour,too,PW.So intellectual!)
        The level of Hypocrisy of the you ‘Faux Labor’ fluffers is breathtaking.
        3 for the price of two,no less.

        I have never seen so much shallow political pride displayed so overtly.
        Lets hope Cassidy is right and we have an early election so we can see what Australians really feel.But for those of you who think that the current Labor with its soul eviscerated will rule rule in their own right,I think you had better prepare for some nights out(away from the Teev) and avoid newspapers.
        The MSM advertising blitz will be unbearable.And Abbott has the gall to accuse others of smear campaigns.
        Labor will need to buy every single vote at this election if they intend to let Gillard Howard face the people.Not what you want to hear Paul and co,but that is the cascade of elephant diarrhoea Labor has to deal with.

        Reminder.You are not supporter Labor,you are supporter an inferior proxy.
        Even Craig Thomson(who I believed you supported?) is onto that.
        Gillard-Howard and her backers must go.And only Labor can do that from within.
        But you keep flying that flag Paul.We all know principles and standards are mere words to you et al.

        Enjoy your Benny Hill re-runs.


  15. Sam Jandwich November 5, 2012 at 12:30 pm #

    Yes, our macabre friend does make one painfully aware of the moribund state we’re in at the moment. What’s not to whinge about?

    Watch this space though, because if Barack Obama wins and Malcolm Turnbull’s increasingly likely resurrection goes ahead, we might actually have something to pin our hopes on.

    Funny how this constant struggle between good and evil never gets resolved. it seems as though when circumstances are at their most dire there’s always some sort of unexpected dramatic turnaround that takes us back just far enough to allow a little complacency, whereupon it all slowly falls apart again.

    Oh well, cheers, to optimism 🙂


    • annodyne November 5, 2012 at 12:43 pm #

      Yes Sam – ‘if Barack Obama wins and Malcolm Turnbull’s increasingly likely resurrection goes ahead, we might actually have something to pin our hopes on’ yes indeed. has an expose of Mutt Richney’s ugly ugly uni bullying days, so I know how he got where he is and my gloom if he wins will be darker than night.

      I know someone who works for a big big Canberra Labor person and when I said to him that I would turn for Malcolm he replied – “half of Labor would”.


      • samjandwich November 5, 2012 at 1:50 pm #

        Could change the face of politics as we know it.

        I’ve always thought the left/right divide was a bit of a false dichotomy. A more useful way of analysing politics and politicians is to ask whether it/they espouse a belief in the ability of human beings to choose the ways in which they want to live a life that is meaningful to them, and to support that, or whether they espouse a belief that the meaning in life precedes humanity, and that people should be supported to achieve pre-conceived ideals.

        These concepts are loosely associated with left and right, but not exclusively so – and it seems to me that what is going on at the moment is that while Labor is reaching further and further to what is traditionally thought of as the “right”, they are failing to cater to the people who want to choose how to live. Instead they are fighting the Liberal party for the hearts of only the small proportion of the electorate which wants to be told how to live… whereas the enterprising and illustrious (thanks Anne for the extensive research!) Mr Turnbull is single-handedly appealing to the rest of us.


        • Hypocritophobe November 5, 2012 at 3:25 pm #

          ” A more useful way of analysing politics and politicians is to ask whether it/they espouse a belief in the ability of human beings to choose the ways in which they want to live a life that is meaningful to them, and to support that, or whether they espouse a belief that the meaning in life precedes humanity, and that people should be supported to achieve pre-conceived ideals.”
          Quite so.

          But f you could get that message through the head of the one eyed apathetic supporters of the 2 Tea parties you would create a road to Utopia.Judging by the shallow “vote for a lesser evil’ copout (espoused vociferously by some here),and how they use infantile slurrs to conclude that any one differing is ‘obviously pro Abbott,I think we have an uphill battle.Especially if these people describe themselves as intellects, or rational.
          “Vote A,because they are not B, and f*ck whatever principles you hold dear”, is the new Faux Labor catchcry.
          Malcolm Turnbull is the obvious choice for the Liberals,but they lack the courage to stand up to Abbott, the big end of town, the MSM,ultra-hard Liberals and the Church, who wields so much power from behind the scenes.
          Hopefully one side will wake up before the election and do the right thing.


      • paul walter November 5, 2012 at 2:07 pm #

        My thesis would be that that Abbott is a sort of Australian Rick Santorum.
        That is, someone employed to shore up the base until something more cosmetically attractive can turn up before an election.
        Turnbull could be an Australian Mitt Romney; a Gordon Gecko type whose more genial appearance belies a fierce adherence to neoliberalism and austerity- after all, he 1) was a principle at manipulative Macbank and 2) happily played Grech when he thought he could get away with it.
        So that leaves us with an election, if Australian politics can be considered increasingly presidential, between Gillard (Obama) and Turnbull (Rmoney).
        Gillard is, you know what you get -one iota better than the others.
        Turnbull (to me) is just another risk, after Abbott.
        Yes, ideally the Greens would form government, but this is the real world with all its realities, that some here can’t face.


        • annodyne November 5, 2012 at 2:16 pm #

          if they were animals, Abbott would be a male labrador pup humping your leg and panting, and Malcolm would be a crocodile, submerged, watching, stealthy and able. I am under no illusions. I wish the Greens were more organised.


          • Hypocritophobe November 5, 2012 at 3:28 pm #

            And Gillard Howard a parasitic hookworm, needing a host to survive.


          • paul walter November 5, 2012 at 4:30 pm #

            At last, some common sense.
            The US is even crazier. And no, contrary to some, I have no illusions about the ALP either.
            Bad or worse.


        • Hypocritophobe November 5, 2012 at 3:34 pm #

          You knowingly underestimate the power of voting for principles and protest votes.Of course in your democracy you only have 2 choices, so to you all those not voting Tea-party 1 or 2 are irrelevant.
          I know the Greens won’t can’t form a govt,so stop behaving like a petulant smart arse wanker.
          I think you have red lined the hypocrisy meter enough.


          • Hypocritophobe November 5, 2012 at 3:59 pm #

            This comment (November 5, 2012 at 3:34 pm #) is in response to St Paul,
            (November 5, 2012 at 2:07 pm #)


  16. annodyne November 5, 2012 at 12:49 pm #

    some reasons to love Malcolm T: he was a bit ex-nuptual and fruit of grand illicit passion,
    after the Tourang stoush with Conrad Black et al, MT told Kerry Packer to pack off their 20-year friendship, MT is cousin or nephew of Jessica Murder She wrote, and his/their g-grandfather is a British LABOR hero beloved in Hackney and with memorials to say so. Far more interesting than anybody else around really.


    • annodyne November 5, 2012 at 1:01 pm #

      back from Wiki now and it’s even better. MT is more Catholic than Abbott, being a convert, and deserves to be PM for his Dad n Dave connection alone: ‘Coral Magnolia Lansbury born St Kilda. parents Oscar Lansbury and wife May Morle; They were touring Australia in a production of the musical Showboat, and were stranded by the Great Depression. She was a distant cousin of actress Angela Lansbury.

      Coral Lansbury-Turnbull graduated from North Sydney Girls HS and entered the Uni of SYD at age 15, where she earned a BA. She married 3 times. 1st husband was iconic radio actor/producer George Edwards, best known for creating & starring in the radio version of Dad and Dave. Edwards had 3 previous wives. He left his 3rd for the much younger Lansbury. They married on 20 February 1953. On 24 October 1954, Coral Lansbury gave birth to a son, MT, by Bruce*Bligh*Turnbull, whom she married in 1955’
      (wiki condensed by me)
      Hasn’t it got everything? St.Kilda, Magnolia, Bligh, uni at 15 and deafening weddings bells everywhere. Vote Mal.


      • annodyne November 5, 2012 at 1:09 pm #

        and it’s got Rutgers, Communists and Hollywood: -‘ politician Edgar Lansbury, a member of the Communist Party of Great Britain and former mayor of the London Borough of Poplar. Her paternal grandfather was the Labour Party leader George Lansbury.
        An extraordinary family all round really. MT’s mother was Prof of English and Dean Of Women at Rutgers University, and wrote many film screenplays. follow the link for a good read.


  17. Sam Jandwich November 5, 2012 at 5:30 pm #

    Interesting day.

    Oh well, after all that I wonder if one thing you could say is that “in general, people are not sufficiently equipped to act in a manner consistent with their objectives and principles over a sustained period – and their performance in this regard declines further still when they’re under stress”, and just learn to live with this.


    • samjandwich November 5, 2012 at 5:37 pm #

      As evidenced by the fact that I can’t take my eyes off the young woman who does the cleaning in my office. Platonic relationships I ask you! What the hell is that>?!


  18. paul walter November 5, 2012 at 5:47 pm #

    It’s pity the blog isn’t better moderated, a few strategic words and maybe more debate and less personal abuse might eventuate.
    From what I read else where, others have given up here and more will follow.


    • Hypocritophobe November 5, 2012 at 6:09 pm #

      When you practise what you preach…..perhaps?
      It seems you are quite prepared to have me silenced because I don’t toe your political line.
      You have given as much abuse as I.
      And now you follow it up with a baseless accusation.
      Low act/s IMHO.

      All because you refuse to accept a view that others can see through Gillard Howard and faux Labor.You need to get out more if you think the election is won and lost here.


    • Hypocritophobe November 5, 2012 at 6:39 pm #

      You can classify this as abuse if you wish,but…
      Newsflash Mr Walter
      Its a bit rich copping a lecture on “How to Vote” from an individual who demands policy differentiation, and yet endorses a party who steals the policies of others.
      Even worse when that individual supports a position/policy up until the very minute the policy is flipped 180 degrees, to one which is diametrically opposed to the view the held in the preceeeding minute.
      I don’t think there is a clearer demonstration of poltical hypocrisy.
      Review your position on the policies of (during) the Howard years, and all your criticism since, and then reach for your Little Book of Justifying Political Backflips”, aka The Faux Labor Bible.
      You know the one.The well worn ‘dog eared’ one distributed by the NSW right.
      Signed in what “looks like” red ink by Gillard howard,circa the demise of Rudd.

      Before you lecture anyone about ‘how’ to ‘vote’, perhaps you should learn about the concept of ‘what to vote for’.It is amply demonstrated that both majors are prepared to say one thing and do the opposite either post election, or post an opinion poll.
      I see no justification of Labors backflips,other than pure political survival at the individual level.You may like/endorse this version of reactive behaviour, but I call it opportunistic and selfish .


    • doug quixote November 6, 2012 at 12:44 am #

      I wouldn’t let it worry you, Paul. Poor Hypo is just very frustrated.

      Discuss the issues and leave the personalities aside.

      “I said/She said” stuff isn’t going to persuade anyone.

      Is it, Hypo?


      • paul walter November 6, 2012 at 2:08 am #

        It doesn’t bother me, I wonder why this individual won’t read what other people say and address the points raised rationally instead of embarking on spittle-flecked abuse.
        Citing the thread -starter,
        ” We are not robots.
        We don’t want aggressive repetitive sound bites. We want policies.
        We want respect”.
        If it’s not going to be an ideas blog rather than one that deliberately crowds ideas and their sharing in good faith out, it’ll be so easy to walk away.
        There are so many better things to spend time on.


        • Hypocritophobe November 6, 2012 at 9:48 am #

          We are not robots?
          “Must vote ,Labor,must vote Labor,must vote Labor…”
          “Julia good,Julia good,Julia good……”
          As for respect?
          Do you ever read your own content?


      • Hypocritophobe November 6, 2012 at 9:58 am #

        You could be right DQ.
        Problem is the selective standards applied to how that feeling is distributed to contributors.
        That aside, it would be a very empty shell of a blog if all the comments pertaining to ‘personality’ were inadmissible.
        Half the subjects are about just that.
        If you are are saying we can engage each other or raise the temperature i think that speaks volumes about an underlying penchant for censoring the things some won’t hear.
        Try sticking your fingers in your ear and going lalalalalalala.
        There is plenty more deserved criticism headed the way of Gillard and Labor.
        That does not let Abbott off the hook.

        For the record there are plenty of instances of the unanswered questions bouncing around here.
        So hypocrisy lives.
        And you bet I am frustrated.This current morph of Labor has done as much to ensure the instalment of Abbott and the destruction of themselves, than an army Graham Morris’s could deliver.And you know it.
        I won’t be letting the party who aspired to the universal ‘fair go’ finish the Howard job of destroying it, by keeping ‘mum’, for you PW or anyone else.


        • Hypocritophobe November 6, 2012 at 10:09 am #

          “If you are are saying we CAN’T engage…”


        • doug quixote November 6, 2012 at 3:54 pm #

          We don’t expect you to keep ‘mum’ Hypo! What would we do without our better angels keeping us up to the task? 🙂


    • Sam Jandwich November 6, 2012 at 9:48 am #

      People are writing about us? How splendid!



  19. doug quixote November 6, 2012 at 12:39 am #

    The only reason the Greens appear principled is that they aren’t in government nor are they likely to be.

    The art of politics is the art of compromise, one reason Abbott did not win in 2010 and why he is dead-man-walking right now, (apart from being a sexist bastard with no economic or strategic expertise whatsoever).

    There is no comparison between Gillard and Howard as some here seem to think. The words ‘Prime Minister’ is where the similarity begins and ends.


    • samjandwich November 6, 2012 at 9:55 am #

      Agree DQ. I’ll continue to maintain that Julia’s stuck between a rock and a hard place. I’m sure she feels terrible about what she’s doing to asylum seekers et al, and that she’ll spend her retirement subjecting herself to emotional torture. but for the moment I think she knows she just has to do these things to stay in power and to prevent the situation from getting any worse.


      • Marilyn November 8, 2012 at 4:59 pm #

        Bull, she doesn’t care and she never has. If she cared she would take the high moral ground instead of racing to the bottom of the sludge pile.

        I will tell all those who have never met her again – she is a racist coward.


    • Hypocritophobe November 6, 2012 at 10:25 am #

      No comparison?

      On most policies this country has become a 3 legged race with both Tea Parties firmly strapped together.
      Joined at the head, if you like.

      As for refugee policy.Labor (this toxic version) has plagiarised and supercharged Howard’s cold policies.
      What else?
      Refugees,indigenous intervention,foreign labour,protecting big business,protecting opportunistic breeding, PM junkets,wars,incompetent ministers,US bases,failing to protect our citizens overseas, and the list goes on.
      Other than not wanting to hear or read it, can you justify why the political microscope should only ever face one way?
      (I mean apart from the standard ‘they are not Abbott diatribe’)
      Can you actually explain why (other than self serving motives) what was once a social taboo, a veritable ‘untouchable’ idea is now eminently sensible?
      Do your principles REALLY have a use by date?
      (The last one is rhetorical)

      I’ve compared, and many others have.The similarities are stark.


      • Poirot November 6, 2012 at 11:04 am #

        I have to say that it’s very difficult for me to give Julia and Labor the thumbs up, Notwithstanding Abbott appears bereft of anything that would differentiate him from a cardboard cutout. How can I take Labor seriously when they have taken Howard’s refugee arrangements and run with them – despite(! )the most impassioned objections over such arrangements when they were in opposition? And what of Labor’s penny-pinching plan to kick single parents in the solar plexus?

        I’ve voted long Green in the upper house as a kind of safety valve. Now I feel as if I have no-one to vote for, as labor on these emotive issues has cancelled itself out in my book.

        Hypo – I get where you’re coming from, but nothing was ever solved by hammering at people who are, in the main, sympathetic to many of the points you are making. At least on this blog we’re fundamentally of a similar mindset. Perhaps we should strive a little harder to make the most of our common ground.


        • samjandwich November 6, 2012 at 11:07 am #

          Thanks for that common ground comment Poirot, I was trying to think of something like that, just to accompany the point about robots.

          We’re charging to a victory, and now we’re full of energy!


        • paul walter November 6, 2012 at 12:15 pm #

          Poirot- your comment on Abbott’s repeated dramatic and impassioned calls for humanity on the refugee issue that have cornered the ALP into changing its mind, it being left to follow the old way on its own. No doubt about it Abbott’s dramatic and principles-based reversal means that the ALP has to drop hard core policies against asylum seekers to regain bipartisanship and obviously it will do this because it only ever went hardline in the first place to avoid being out flanked by the rightist opposition on a race-driven button-presser issue.
          And what ringing oratory on single parent pensions, that sure made sure they withdrew that, didn’t it?
          Instead,Abbott’s excellent plan to tax the rich and cut defence spending.
          Why, oh why, is it, that some of you CAN’ T grasp the underlying context of adversarial politics in this country driven by the wealthy and unscrupulous, that forces a minority government to compromise, when the alternative is to lose lose ALL??


          • Poirot November 6, 2012 at 12:40 pm #

            I suppose all this demonstrates the limits of democracy – when it comes to strongly held convictions in the minds of the populace. Much of the “boat people” furore is fueled by fear. We are an especially insular and fortunate society – a fertile ground,therefore, for populist mantras to be bandied about on the national political scene.

            Gillard lost me when she touted Timor as a solution, without even properly discussing it with the Timorese. I haven’t been able to take her seriously since. Stop-gap “compromise” that jettisons conviction and replaces it with strategy is the stuff of politics – yet leaves me cold, perhaps naively.

            …but the Libs and Abbott are no alternative…I have no-one to vote for who is a realistic chance of government…(out to the vegie patch to ponder the imponderables – perhaps)


            • doug quixote November 6, 2012 at 3:51 pm #

              Gillard in 2010 is a long chalk from Gillard in 2012. She is now a far more experienced Prime Minister than the one we had back then, the one who made the mistake of taking East Timor for granted, and who later about the carbon price said “call it a tax if you like” – and I cringed when she said that.

              It takes time and experience to become a good PM even if the person in question is a quick study, and one who has mastered every brief she ever received.

              She has the makings of not just a good but a great Prime Minister.


              • Marilyn November 8, 2012 at 5:01 pm #

                Crap, she will still be a frigging racist punishing the most desperate people in the world,


          • helvityni November 6, 2012 at 1:06 pm #

            Paul, I could not agree more with your last paragraph.


  20. paul walter November 6, 2012 at 4:41 pm #

    No Poirot, it’s not a “victim” government, any one who watched the performance from that piece of right wing deadwood Ludwig on 4 Corners last night knows how foully contaminated by rightist economic ideology and bullshit it is.
    It is like the Obama government in the US, a deeply flawed entity within a deeply flawed system.
    The one thing that differentiates Labor here and the Democrats there from the Tea Party or Abbott Right is that while these pay lip service to the dominant ideology/theology, they haven’t actually been able to overcome their own intelligence to the extent that they actually believes he outrageous, despicable and illogical nonsenses that underpin Rightist attitude and ideology.
    Where both governments have suffered, is through the obstructionism of the Hard Right where conditions within western society mean that the ultra rich control way too much, from the parties themselves to varying degrees, as well as the information system, media and press. These tell the truth not often enough and actually spend an incredible amount of time, money and effort spinning and even deliberately obscuring the truth.
    The result is a continuing capture of the organs of state, as Democracy becomes a facade for other activities. You see this most blatantly in the structure of the US Supreme Court or the ABC Board, stacked by political appointees who can actually change laws or manipulate truth to the extent of inducing a quantum rupture in the fabric of Civil Society.
    Yet, faced with a choice that at least still acknowledges separation of church and state, is secular and rational and retains the knowledge that is prerequisite for the understanding of democracy and “the human”, and an opposition founded upon superstition and anti intellectualism that actively seeks to impose a feudal system based on privilege and some sort of illogical Divine Right; if the final choice comes down to that, I must still put Labor in front of the Tories, despite the flaws.
    I can’t applaud the mistakes of centrist democracy and loath the cynicism of the parasites who shelter within political parties, but I won’t reward the very obstructionism that prevents civilisation from moving forward.


    • Poirot November 6, 2012 at 6:35 pm #

      Yeah, Paul – I really wouldn’t know. I think I’ve let my political nous atrophy of late. I was incredibly tuned in during the Howard years…and what I saw I detested.
      I believe you’re right that compromise has been a big part of the shenanigans, But what about things like pokey reform? What about school chaplaincy? Everything just sails along, adhering more or less to the prevailing winds blown by the 1 percent.

      In a “fortunate” social democracy, I’m afraid we’ll have to wait for the “born to rule” mob to over-extend themselves before the left can reinvent itself with “purpose”.


  21. doug quixote November 6, 2012 at 6:53 pm #

    To Paul and Poirot : There’s no doubt Labor has disappointed many who hoped for better. Obama has struck a similar difficulty in the USA.

    But I for one have seen no reason whatsoever for anyone to change their preference to favour the negativity of the wreckers party.

    As Paul Keating put it, “You know what Tony Abbott’s policy is: ‘If you don’t give me the job, I’ll wreck the place’ “


    • Hypocritophobe November 6, 2012 at 7:05 pm #

      I won’t dwell on this because it’s a wall too thick for an unprotected scone.

      The more of ‘traditional’ Labor supporters who tolerate the current morph,and don’t speak up against the devaluing of the core principles, the quicker you will create the society you were hoping to avoid.
      If you are so naive so as to believe that after getting a clear run, Labor will revert to softer policy positions later, you are ten fold an idealist to I.
      Blair proved how professional factional politicians can destroy a value based party.
      So by giving the power brokers an inch, even with a female figure head as a prop,you license them to practise the art of, ‘we have a mandate’, based on any electoral gain.And they will run with and tighten up that mandate gained by false pretences.
      Don’t say you weren’t warned.An good luck pinning your hopes on any reversion to a more ‘caring’ Labor.They no longer exist.
      For me it is a matter of going to my grave with a belief system intact (as possible), and minimal culpability on installing despots,whatever their colour,whatever their gender and wherever they hide.
      Post election, my voting conscience won’t be keeping me awake, nor Gillard or Abbott benefiting from my vote.


      • doug quixote November 6, 2012 at 10:56 pm #

        Are you Paul or Poirot? No? Then please comment elsewhere, not reply in this thread,if you would. I’ve heard quite enough of your views on this matter, Hypo.

        I am addressing Paul and Poirot. Thank you.


        • paul walter November 6, 2012 at 11:30 pm #

          You’ve noticed the latest wilful misrepresentation of what we are actually saying from No Place for Ungulates resident saint,
          up there dying slowly on that cross in some malarial hole in Asia, DQ?
          When we offended so deeply with our cowardice, Hypo cleared off, wearing sack cloth and ashes only, no food, no water, to show us the real way to not be complicit with the system, rather than remain comfortable here also, yet whilst affording her(?)self the additional luxury of cheap shots at others who also understood the implications of what ultimate concern for those ruined by the global system would demand for them and did no worse in the face of it.
          Oh virtue, such steely dedication to the cause, such sacrifice as the likes of us mere mortals would never contemplate, in our shallow selfishness.
          It is lucky our heroine is no hypocrite, rather is such a shining example of the true meaning of the term “Hypocritophobe”.
          “Jesus Christ,
          Who are you,
          what have you
          None of us said we approved of the world as it is, which you would have realised had you bothered to read our comments.
          We just asked, what’s the point of cutting off our noses to spite our miserable faces?
          In future we will look to you and your resolute steely example.


          • Hypocritophobe November 7, 2012 at 12:07 am #

            Watch it or I will turn you into a pillar of salt, you heathen.


        • Hypocritophobe November 6, 2012 at 11:49 pm #

          This is not your blog


          • doug quixote November 7, 2012 at 7:43 am #

            Good for you? Why, thank you Hypo!

            BTW, it was the Old Testament YHWH who did the pillar of salt thing – not the New Testament Nailed God. Whilst we’re in alphabet soup, ROFLMAO.


      • paul walter November 7, 2012 at 4:26 am #

        Ok, in a more conciliatory tone, the current morph has been, well, morphing for decades.
        I think you’ll find that over that time, many people have despairingly oscillated between the ALP and the Democrats earlier, now the Greens, both who have- significantly- rarely exceeded 10% of the vote.
        Or even voted Trot or one of the other old left parties.
        Of course there are (small “l”) liberals here, they probably have despairingly oscillated between the Coalition and the Dems or even Greens, too.
        And I still say first Rudd, then Gillard more recently, have been better options overall than an Abbott alternative.
        You take what you can get, in a democracy leached of democracy.
        I did say, marginally better rather much better, in most previous posts.
        This would still be better than most other places on Earth, I’d reckon.


  22. doug quixote November 7, 2012 at 7:30 am #

    At the risk of returning to the topic :

    Jennifer, I too found libraries a haven of calm and quiet in a otherwise hyperactive world. Thankfully I had none of your existential threats. Even in an age when just about everything is accessible online, the printed page in a heavy tome is somehow comforting, not just because it is so permanent a record.

    In “1984” the Ministry of Truth (Propaganda) had to go back and rewrite newspaper articles and books so that the current Party Line was always the way it is. Today, the job would be very much easier if there were no longer any books – a few mouse clicks and a paragraph here or there can be “corrected”.

    All it needs is an authoritarian regime to take power in USA. Many of us think they are bad enough now, but the reality is that no US regime to date has been worse than moderately rightist, not even Reagan and Bush jnr.

    Will it stay that way? Today might tell, with Ryan potentially a heartbeat away from becoming president. Maybe not this time, but “never” is a non-starter in politics.

    We live in hope


  23. doug quixote November 7, 2012 at 6:55 pm #

    Congratulations to Barack Obama !!

    Praise him with great praise!!


    • Poirot November 7, 2012 at 9:40 pm #

      I second that, DQ!!


      • Hypocritophobe November 7, 2012 at 10:02 pm #

        Ditto, congrats to Obama..
        He even acknowledged climate change.Shock, horror.
        Action on it?Whole other question.
        Not so sure how the drive for local oil will impact on the local environment of the US, but I sense he will have a go anyway to deliver jobs before he bids the electorate fare thee well.

        I thought Romneys speech was gracious, and worthy of the situation and his status as an alternative., and I hope the Yanks of both sides can work together.
        (Although the sore losers seem to be already rearing their ugly ultimatum mouths)
        The patriotism factor of the big US picture (superiority complex) and this presidential race, however, still makes my skin crawl.
        And there is way to much focus on military shit.
        Let it go dudes.Stay home, etc.


  24. Hypocritophobe November 7, 2012 at 10:14 pm #


    That takes care of sex and drugs.

    Now for some rock and roll.


  25. Marilyn November 8, 2012 at 5:06 pm #

    What amazes me about ALP supporters is their blind belief that it was not the ALP who supported the white Australia policy, who invented locking up refugees, who wrote the pay for your own illegal imprisonment and permanent prison without charge.

    Some seem to forget that the unions formed the ALP not out of decency or care but out of a race to keep out Chinese and other workers.

    The ALP was founded on racism and continues on racism.

    No racist party is worthy of any support at all.


    • doug quixote November 8, 2012 at 6:45 pm #

      Your historical analysis is correct.

      But that was then, this is now.

      Are the Labor supporters of 2012 responsible for the views and actions of the Labor members of 1912?

      Or those of the members in 1962?

      Or of those in 1992 for that matter.



      • Hypocritophobe November 8, 2012 at 10:31 pm #

        Fine DQ take that view,but that completely cancels out an argument YOU used before when you gave your duplicate Howard speech about ‘we decide’ etc, when you claimed your forbears fought long and hard etc, to keep the firewall strong.Well DQ that was also ‘long ago,things have changed’.Can’t have it both ways old chap, or guess what?
        Plenty of diggers and all sorts of battlers have spilled their guts for a fair go.
        Excising the mainland is not a fair go.There are dozens of other instances of rank hypocrisy and rampant ‘unfair go’ coming from the party who used to be custodians of the fair go.
        I think you need to do a shoe swap some time.
        The boats won’t stop until we have Utopia on earth.(Read never) Unless we take well upwards of 250,000 refugees a year, and until Indonesia’s corrupt police/army/officials are obliterated from earth, the boats will continue to come.
        As for the white Australia policy being in the past.Do you ever listen (hear) to some of the street conversations and smoko chats?You know what shock jocks thrive on?
        You have seen the contents of the Drum on topics broaching other cultures?
        This nation is filled with those who would love it back again.
        They are 3 feet thick on the ground in QLD.
        And yes Labor supporters of 2012 can be held responsible for creating an environment conducive to(licensing) xenophobia.They already have.


        • doug quixote November 8, 2012 at 11:14 pm #

          I don’t agree with the logic. Are we not entitled to the product of our ancestors efforts, without having to adopt all their personal guilt?

          That is the difference. If you cannot see that, I can’t help you.

          Ask any country whether the neighbouring country’s citizens can come in, access their health care, education and welfare for free and then wander off home, as they will.


          • Hypocritophobe November 8, 2012 at 11:26 pm #

            You must carry bleach with you everywhere.You sanitise principles as you go.

            I don’t want your help DQ.I’m very comfortable in my own skin.Happy to share this country’s opportunities and I’m not afraid of cultural diversity.

            I don’t see refugees as a threat.Even them ‘scary’ different looking ones.

            You’re not alone in your views.(Sadly)
            And I am not alone in rejecting them.They are way to Little Johnny for me.

            Cest la vie


            • doug quixote November 8, 2012 at 11:50 pm #

              Don’t try to play the racist card with me, it won’t wash. I see no difference between people of any skin colour. Give me Barack Obama or Nelson Mandela any day of the week over Mitt Romney or David Cameron, to name a few.

              Hell, I even prefer Julia Gillard (a woman!) and Penny Wong (all boxes ticked!) over Tony Abbott or Scott Morrison (nice middle class white boys . . . puke).

              And I counted Bob Bellear (the first Aboriginal judge) as a good friend.

              So please try barking up some other tree.


              • Hypocritophobe November 9, 2012 at 1:15 am #

                But DQ It’s only my ‘opinion’, and it’s only based on what I have seen you write.
                It’s not playing a card.It’s responding to your content.
                I’m sure you have many diverse friends.
                So don’t play the reverse racist card.


    • paul walter November 9, 2012 at 12:20 am #

      No, I don’t quite agree, Marilyn. Times were infinitely harder a century and more ago than now and literacy far lower.
      The reality is, employers almost universally have used cheap imported labour as strike breakers and to drive down already low wages.
      It is not the other workers they “hate” so much as what lies behind their use by employers.
      In more recent times, hate turns to just that during times when people knowingly break picket lines and maliciously scab, as they did during the notorious Webb Dock wharf strike.
      But I do “get” that Australians have been gradually losing their sense of solidarity with the underdog and the old left understanding that we are all, almost, workers under the same general rule, capitalism.
      I think it IS true that we have been persuaded by the Allan Jones types to forget that Hazaras and others are fellow travellers rather than aliens.
      Oth, it is quite easy to see Howard being able to create so much animus against refugees for his own political reasons, exploiting the very same fear he had created in the existing public. People wouldn’t have trusted him had he allowed the extra numbers in, so he did the other, easier thing and created political capital out of the fear that the left were “soft” on “queue-jumpers”.
      He had it both ways, incidentally, because he bought in cheap sweated labour through visa conditions alteration, anyway.
      Given the Webb Dock tactic of playing off both ends against the middle it’s little wonder that people were suspicious of what Howard would do to exploit an increase in working class population, so in a deregulated, neo liberal world workers and others of the under classes here became defensive and looked to protecting “number one” instead.
      Which, of course, is what they wanted anyhow.


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

    Paedophile Priests :

    Detective Chief Inspector Peter Fox heralded a new chapter in the battle against the paedophile priests of the Roman Catholic Church. The cover-up goes to the highest levels of the Church. Without naming names several bishops and an Archbishop were mentioned as part of it.

    Which Archbishop can that be? Hint : There aren’t too many Roman Catholic Archbishops in NSW, covering the dioceses in question, Newcastle-Maitland.

    Refer to the Lateline program, ABC tonight 8 November. This is “explosive”, as DCI Fox stated.


    • Hypocritophobe November 9, 2012 at 1:14 am #

      Watch this space, indeed.
      Explosive? Yes!

      The next part will be the ball breaker or the worlds biggest let down.
      I pity the victims and their families as the hope of justice wafts tantalisingly in the distance.


      • Hypocritophobe November 9, 2012 at 11:22 am #

        BTW Do not be surprised if a story about some other org involved in child abuse,or similar criminal activity pops up to diffuse the impact this story is having on the RC church.It ‘coincidentally’ seems to happen every time their filth is exposed in the media.
        They will do (have done) whatever they can to avoid scrutiny, anything to get the heat off the front page ASAP( as this brave cop has shown)
        (And let us never forget that there are families who no longer have loved ones, over this issue)
        Is that the paper shredders I hear, again?


  27. paul walter November 9, 2012 at 2:13 pm #

    I spotted it an hour or two ago, and think the Victoria Police submission is timely, to say the least (paedophilia again).
    What does it take, to get the message through to certain institutions and individuals?


  28. Hypocritophobe November 9, 2012 at 2:51 pm #

    And why is it whenever Catholic church paedophilia hits the ABC news desk, more often than not there are no names attached to the story ?

    BTW Where is Chris Uhlmann?.He should be all over this.

    No matter what state premiers do/say,nothing short of a RC will suffice.


    • doug quixote November 10, 2012 at 8:23 am #

      You had me tricked there for a sec, Hypo! When I grew up an RC was a Roman Catholic!

      Definitely a Royal Commission, but exactly how the terms of reference are drawn is the rub. The devil is always in the detail.

      Expect O’Farrell to pussyfoot around his Taliban Christians in the overblown State parliamentary Liberal Party, unless enough pressure can be brought to bear.


    • helvityni November 10, 2012 at 8:59 am #

      Hypo, are you missing Chris? To be fair he was getting a bit better before he went on holidays(?) Some nights Leigh is OK, but I still think she has a lot to learn about interviewing…
      Hopefully Annabell stays in America.


      • Hypocritophobe November 10, 2012 at 11:24 am #

        Perhaps the Crabb will drop her bundle in the US and they can somehow annoint them as Yanks and keep them.They need a boring psychophantic cooking show.


        • Hypocritophobe November 10, 2012 at 11:31 am #

          BTW The ‘psychophantic’ is my new word for today.
          Read ‘mind numbing ennui’.


          • helvityni November 10, 2012 at 1:11 pm #

            Talk about ennui, I could only take ten minutes of the Bronny interview, Gerard fell asleep after five minutes…


          • doug quixote November 10, 2012 at 6:51 pm #

            Try “sycophantic” 🙂


  29. doug quixote November 9, 2012 at 6:15 pm #

    If no-one took the hint, it appears that Cardinal George Pell has a starring role in the cover-up.

    The Church always closes ranks, probably even better than the police and the military; after all they are certain God is on their side, are they not? Suffer the little children and all that.

    We need a Royal Commission, as DCI Fox said. With those sort of powers, there must be a few priests whose conscience will cause them to roll over.


    • hudsongodfrey November 10, 2012 at 11:54 am #

      I note that the news of the Catholic paedophile scandal has reached these pages and I think it once again needs further reflection on the kind of action that needs to happen now.

      When we celebrate the growth of racial equality here or in the US we sometimes overlook that many of the worst offenders, negligent cops or lynch mobs never did get caught. Too often by the time we were ready to deal with their crimes those offenders were either very old or had already died. Instead they’re ignominy passed unpunished, though not we hope unheeded, into the annals of history as times changed and the practice of racial hatred diminished hopefully beyond the point of any return.

      When we likewise look at the historical profile of institutionalised paedophilia we also see revelations typically at up around 40 years removed from the event. Here also the offenders are often either too old or already dead by the time their abuses are brought to light. So we’re similarly tempted to believe they’ll pass ignominiously into history.

      If only this were true.

      The evidence is that what usually happens is that the victims reach middle age before they’re psychologically prepared to deal with events in their childhood and that it is this that provides such a degree of effective cover for institutionalised offending.

      We simply have to assume as the figures are beginning to emerge in support of it, that this is both widespread and ongoing.

      A royal commission is a serious thing, not just because it is an extreme and expensive undertaking, but because it assumes coercive powers that almost infer an assumption of guilt until proven innocent. I have said before that I think the coercive element may be counter-productive, but I am rather strongly convinced by the latest revelations that presumption of suspicion must regrettably be extended to members of the Catholic clergy in particular because of the insidious nature and history of these crimes.

      I still don’t know if a royal commission will achieve that but they have been known to come with investigative powers that may go a good way towards addressing this kind of problem.

      To give a different kind of example, I generally dislike the attitude governments are taking towards motorcycle clubs because it often assumes a form of prejudice in how justice is applied rather than through instigating a more determined investigative approach. Anything that stigmatises a group of people without proving charges against them offers them a persecution clause. You merely assumed we were criminal as a way of discriminating against an in-group/out-group mentality.

      Similarly criticism of the closed exclusivity seen in just about any organised religious group could easily resurface as a persecution narrative if the evidence of such offences is not found or not able to be found. That’s why I think the investigative focus should be the emphasis and that action should be on a national scale.

      But this raises a very large and difficult problem, that of the victim’s sensibilities. Those who many have been abused some time ago can be ready and willing to air their grievances, but to get at cases that are ongoing you need to find more recent victims. It seems that the inquisition we’re about to embark upon has the same problem as the original one. How do you conduct a witch hunt that only catches witches.

      It saddens me that I’ve come to that realisation and don’t know how to solve it, but the one thing I will say is that I don’t know whether I’d dislike the abusers that much more that I would self righteous interrogators if they’re prepared to drag unwilling victims into this.

      The catch22 is there though staring us in the face, how to make this particular omelette without breaking a a few innocent eggs.

      Until we’re able to deal with crimes of violation in a ways that overcome the psychological impact it has on an innocent victim so that they’re not driven to internalise their abuse, then we’re probably going to be stuck on the horns of that dilemma. In the meantime the flip-side of that seems to me to be that if people aren’t going to revise their understanding of the crime of abuse so that victimisation of the innocent party figures less strongly in their condemnation of it then I’m a touch sceptical of whether we’re dealing with crime and punishment rather than demonisation and permission to hate.

      The whole thing needs to be refocused in my view away from the crime and resentment of the institutions who harboured it and onto getting help for victims in what appears to be ongoing jeopardy.


      • Hypocritophobe November 10, 2012 at 12:12 pm #

        Perhaps we should ask the victims and their families what they want?
        I’m guessing having the perpetrators NOT face justice and or punishment is not high on the agenda.
        This raw and evisceral attack,perpetrated over generations on innocents is bad enough,but the wilful cover ups and protections,destruction of evidence etc take it to a new level of atrocity.
        Personally I cannot see why any of these ghouls in church cloth should not incur greater penalty, given their position of trust.
        And yes victim support is definitely a major part, which should be forthcoming without question, at the cost of the institution who employed the perpetrator/s.

        The stain on the church will not go away,in a hurry, if ever.


        • hudsongodfrey November 10, 2012 at 3:12 pm #

          Don’t care much myself whether that stain of ignominy ever goes away really, sometimes even stigmata may be a hand reminder of deeds never to be repeated.

          What I’m trying to get at though is that there seems to be a rationale here that overwhelms the justification we provide for acting against the perpetrators on victims’ behalves but which does not necessarily seem to be motivated primarily by their welfare but rather with the permission we’ve taken to hate this particular crime.

          So while we may have reason for antipathy towards aspects of religion itself and thus even more towards men of the cloth who transgress in one of the few ways that is universally condemned the temptation to conduct something of a witch hunt, or even to rejoice in their comeuppance seems to me like it might yet let down the victims once again.


          • Hypocritophobe November 10, 2012 at 3:32 pm #

            Whilst I agree with much of your sentiment HG, (and it leans towards my great folly of idealism, I believe we are gifted enough as a species of law makers to engage a Royal Commission which protects the victims as much as possible.
            And I think that the victims may well agree.
            But I will find it difficult to conceive that the level of abuse should not be revealed to our community and who was implicit in the cover ups and deception (and if possible the motives of the individual cover ups) , and if they were also offenders.If we don’t do this as a minimum, then we may as well rewrite the laws and let existing incarcerated offenders back out on the streets.
            We have a need to have this dealt with now for very obvious contemporary reasons, but also for the future and the children in that future.
            The implications that the most ultra-trusted member of a families beliefs,ergo an alleged servant of god,should cross this line, is what the perpetrators themselves claim is ‘evil’ personified.It’s heinous.

            Royal Commission(with protection for victims) now.

            As for those who covered up the perpetrators,I am of the belief that an amnesty should apply for a limited time(if they were not abusers).Beyond that amnesty period,if they have not ‘fessed up, as accessories to the crime, they should serve even more hard time, than the perpetrators IMHO.
            Paedophile priests deserve NO special protection or rights.The churches deserve zero protection.After dozens of opportunities to make this right they have shown emphatically, that they cannot ever be trusted.
            They are proven incubators of harm.

            Royal Commission(with protection for victims) now.


            • hudsongodfrey November 10, 2012 at 3:53 pm #

              It may be only a matter of seemingly slight priorities but by call would be for a royal commission to help the victims first and punish for the perpetrators afterwards. I find that next to nothing is achieved by the vicarious infliction of suffering upon a perpetrator whether in this life or the next to compensate his victims. But a healed victim does make a more robust accuser of his attacker if that person is to be prevented from offending again.


              • Hypocritophobe November 10, 2012 at 4:22 pm #

                The longer we/you/they delay the RC, the less living victims we will have.
                Just what some of the perpetrators are likely to be vehemently hoping (preying/praying) for.


                • hudsongodfrey November 10, 2012 at 5:01 pm #

                  No hypo I disagree. I know the piece I posted earlier was long but my contention is that this is still happening.

                  The older victims who’ve survived this long have probably partially healed, but their attackers are by now mostly dead or very old. The effectiveness of church cover-ups and long healing processes have in the past combined to ensure victims fail to come forward until they reach middle age by which time it is probably too late.

                  But while the same conditions exist then the attacks are probably still taking place and we need more recent victims to come forward if the latest generation of clerical abusers are to be stopped.

                  Thus the level of concern and the need of well chosen priorities. The only way to stop this may well be to have children come forward. So if we’re to do that then great care and sensitivity towards them needs to be placed ahead of adults’ desire to see justice done on terms that they appreciate but which younger victims have no need to be stigmatised by.


                  • Hypocritophobe November 10, 2012 at 6:14 pm #

                    What you propose is admirable but will never happen in a time frame conducive to bringing the scum to justice before more victims take their own lives or more hearts are broken.
                    Witch hunt is a good term.
                    This will not be one.Paedophiles are real.Even if the church connected ones beliefs are based on fiction, the crimes are not.
                    So we will have to disagree HG.
                    I simply do not believe your suggestion allows for a time frame which will save more lives than it costs.
                    The government should have already been helping the victims independently from the churches,orgs etc.The church should pay every single cent for every single support treatment/program.And in regard to Marilyns point that sex abuse levels are rife in family units,(and other places/orgs) I’d say that that also needs attacking,but that does not mean pressing any pause buttons on the RoyCom into the escalating revelations of church abuse.Running behind the fire with a damp cotton wool bud is what the church apologists want us all to do,so the the scum can scamper off within the ensuing smokescreen.Meanwhile the fire front is consuming all before it.

                    So I disagree HG and say as many other advocates also say.
                    Royal Commission(with protection for victims) now.


                    • hudsongodfrey November 10, 2012 at 8:32 pm #

                      I tend to suspect we’ll get your version of it first too, it’s human nature to respond to a sense of community outrage rather than the more considered approach, but I hope in the long run that one of the things to emerge from it are the wider scale measures that I believe will do far more good.


    • paul walter November 10, 2012 at 6:43 pm #

      Doug, he’s sat four square in the middle as obstructionist in chief for thirty years. And once, the politicians chime in to absolve the churches of responsibility (Hockey, Shorten) on the very day Conroy is making pious noises about kiddieporn.


  30. Marilyn November 10, 2012 at 4:23 pm #

    Why confine it to the catholics though? And SA Anglicans had to sell almost everything they owned to pay massive compensation claims, the Mulligan investigation found pedophiles and abuse in Salvo’s school holiday camps, among the scouts and guides, everywhere children congregate.

    But most of the abuse in this country is in private homes with bastard fathers like mine diddling their own kids.

    The Salvo’s are now involved in egregious human rights violations on Nauru and still pretend they are dolng something good and the lazy rusted on ALP members still prop up the racist coward doing these terrible things to innocent human beings to win the redneck votes and in breach of the law.

    It’s a bit rich for Gillard to claim that she is a victim of sexism when the victims of her racism are rotting in refugee prisons, or have to make an appeal to the high court to end the racist NT intervention.

    Michael Gordon makes the point this morning in the Age that while the three ignorant, racist old white men were pretending to be refugee law experts and making up things as they go along, the call for the aboriginal groups to be recognised in the constitution were sheived.


    • Hypocritophobe November 10, 2012 at 5:58 pm #

      Your last paragraph sums up Australia’s colonisation from its inception, until today.

      That is the ‘essence’ of this country.Except it is nicely wrapped up in ignorance and denial, and harnessed by the modern political opportunists we put in power.
      These days they spend their time giving gob jobs to mining magnates and foreign despots.

      As said before,Indonesia(the corrupt officials) are ‘in’ on the people smuggling game.
      They are culpable of turning refugees into the pariah of our community.(after the officials have lined their pockets.)Meanwhile, Julia is big noting herself in the Bali democracy comedy festival, telling Army Dinner Jacket,she is too big and important to cast a shadow his way.
      What’s the word for someone who gives money to orphans with one hand, while clubbing them with a stick with the other?
      I suppose the Indo’s are using the patrol boats we gave them for water skiing by now.
      Tip For Today
      My investment advice is snap up real estate in Darwin,Perth and Sydney, anywhere likely to see Yankee military expansion/establishment interest.
      In 2 or 3 years you will increase the investment by about 1500%.
      Little star bangled banners will also come in handy real soon.In fact pretty soon every second week will alternate with visits from Royals and Yankee officials as both nations vie for our ‘stellar’ attention.
      I think this PM is more than equipped to suck up both back doors enthusiastically.

      Australia is the new black(Oh the irony)


    • paul walter November 10, 2012 at 6:47 pm #

      Yes, its the compensation claims that freak them.
      All the more reason why people like Pell should have grasped the nettle a generation ago while there might still have been a chance to salvage some thing from the mess for the churches, if only their own consciences.
      It used to be about kiddie-diddling, now it’s about the refusal to act after a whole sequence of events proving things weren’t one-of, but an entrenched cultural problem.


  31. doug quixote November 10, 2012 at 7:09 pm #

    There are calls for a national inquiry. As desirable as this might be, it is not Constitutionally possible, as the Federal government has no jurisdiction over what are crimes against State laws and the Common Law. Unless every State agrees to refer powers to the Commonwealth, that is – a can of worms all on its own.

    However, a thorough inquiry in NSW would set a good precedent, which could easily be followed elsewhere as and when it is needed.

    To HG : No inquiry worth the bother would be able to insulate the victims from some resultant harm. If that was the criterium there would never be a trial for a sexual offence.

    But I think you will find enough victims and former victims willing to accept the downsides in the cause of justice, or of revenge if you will.


  32. doug quixote November 14, 2012 at 7:00 pm #

    Have you heard the latest?

    “The urban Aboriginal” quote from Abbott?

    The man can’t help himself. Dead-man-walking as leader,

    And unfit for office – any office.

    Not even dog catcher.


    • Hypocritophobe November 14, 2012 at 7:18 pm #

      One punch, too many.


  33. Hypocritophobe November 20, 2012 at 10:31 am #

    Respect the Human.
    (JW you may find a better place for this )

    This is a double tragedy.The community MUST revisit euthanasia.Imagine the family of this man and his late wife.
    It was their life/s FFS.



  1. Abbott. Joggers. Respect the human! « No Place For Sheep | Colin's Folly - November 2, 2012

    […] via Abbott. Joggers. Respect the human! « No Place For Sheep. […]


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