So now George
Bush knows what its like to be a friend of Dick Cheney! Well, at
least the guy didn't have a shotty. Might have made for better
tele though! Nonetheless, Muntadhar al-Zeidi will continue to
languish in an American controlled Iraqi jail until he confesses
… whatever. We haven't seen shoes used in such reverential
surroundings since Nikita Khrushchev took off his off and banged
them on a desk in the UN.
interesting is that his reason for doing so was when a delegate
from the Philippines launched a broadside at the colonial rulers
who, even today, impress their will on subjugated peoples.
Interesting isn't it, how 48 years later the imperialists are
still encountering shoes used as protest props. It's a pity the
much larger media delegation present at the time didn't stand up
for al-Zeidi and use their voices and bodies to raise the
serious questions that should be raised when Bush mounts the
of that. It did add some colour to the ever decreasing range of
political emotion we are seeing from our own crop of current
rulers. Australian politics has, since the Rudd ascension,
become an even paler shade of beige. Just how bad it is was
brought home to me the other evening.
I was sitting
watching what passes for news on the TV when I turned to the
trouble and strife and said, “I miss the Howard government”.
Both of us nearly wet ourselves when we realised what I'd said.
I'm not sure who was more shocked, her or me. Anyway, the upshot
was that I got to thinking about how bland the Labor lot are.
Where is the
toffy, born to rule, guy with the perpetually red cheeks and
expanding corpulence? Where is the former almost monk with his
sharp tongue and acid wit? Where is the ever shining Minister
for Agriculture or something who single handedly saved the
Australian wheat industry? Where is the highly coiffed women who
scribble on blackboards or power dress to the max? Where are the
fun and games? Whole weeks go by and the unions don't take to
the streets. They'll get out of practice unless they dust off
the banners and get to a waterfront or store house and chant
their uniquely Ozzie “Oi, Oi, Oi” style chants.
Oh, I long for
the days when I hung on the words of politicians waiting for a
faux pax that I could use here. I long for the days when
Costello would round on the opposition and leave them scrambling
for a witty retort. I yearn for a glimpse of Howard, cocking his
head, raising his eyebrow and pursing his lips as he told us
another porky pie. He had great body language. Horrible policies
but you could read him like a book.
Where is the
smirking Costello and the terrier Abbott? What a team they would
have made. Lively, always ready for a bit of biffo, if they and
Hockey had made the front row, we would be enjoying World
Championship Politics. Sure, the Libnats had their weaknesses. I
wonder if anyone has woken Ruddock up and told him they didn't
win this time? Poor old Barnaby seems to be the only one on that
side of the Senate who took his goolies with him. OK. Score one
for colour. He did arc up a bit last week but it was a little to
little far too late.
says that I should take a more balanced response to conflict. I
smacked him around to seeing things my way and we get on much
better now. But boy, I've got to tell you I am seriously over
the KRudd (he he. When I typed that in my spell checker changed
it to crud). He sounds like a real try hard. He exudes passion
like a B52 at 20,000 feet. All noise, you know its there and you
realise that whatever its dropping on you is not good for your
should I say Julia, is turning out to be just an extension of
the PR wing of the Labor party. Sure, she has landed a few heavy
hits on the opposition but when she speaks I want to gouge my
eyes out with a nail file. She bores me almost as much as Penny
Wong. I'm sorry Penny but your nose is for blowing snot out of
not speaking through. The two of them are more wooden that
Ruddock ever was and that, my friends, is saying something.
I was going to
mention Peter Garrett but what has he done that is worth
mentioning? Mmmm, let me think about that? Thought so. Nothing
worth writing about. I heard through a mate in Canberra that his
staff have attached a GPS to him because they need to justify
their own jobs for a minister who doesn't do anything
worthwhile. A whole cadre of them now spend hours checking his
whereabouts so they can tell the media “he's unavailable for
comment at the moment” and be sure he is.
Which brings me
to another great disappointment. Steven Conroy. He was supposed
to be a leading light. The man who was going to sort out the
mess Coonan and Alston created by trying to bend over too far
for the media moguls. Conroy did emerge from hibernation a few
days ago to make a few noises about something but when Sol and
Donald rang he quickly retreated to the safety of his panelled
office and a cup of camomile tea.
could be a good minister if she hadn't allowed herself to be
corralled by the same vested interests that held the Howard
government to ransom on health matters. While nice to look at,
her depth of knowledge and understanding of the portfolio seems
to be just one small step behind her. Like a wind up doll she
faces the prospect of becoming another Julia or Penny in a few
I could go on
but I'm getting depressed again. I saw a comment in one of the
weekend rags which said something like, “Howard, Rudd? Same
arse, different cheeks” and I must admit the great saviour KRudd
is letting me down. He is supposed to be younger than Howard but
often seems like he's old before his time. Not in a wise and
sagely manner, but just in the way he presents.
uncomfortable in crowds and unsure of himself. I guess all those
years of being Goss's toe cutter has probably made him aware
that somewhere, out there in punter land – that strange and
dangerous place where all those inconsiderate and unappreciative
people live – is a punter, with a pair of size tens, ready to
let loose at him. Maybe, if that were to happen, I would, for
one night at least, get to see some real pizazz in Australian
politics and the Labour party on the evening news.
By the way. I
reckon the award for the most balsy protest in 12 months go to
Anikka Dean, the protester who was dragged out of Rudd's
concession speech to the coal industry the other day. Dragged
out the door while she continuing to remind us of the truth of
Rudd's deception, she at least demonstrated that some Aussies
are passionate about politics even if our pollies aren't.