Lords and Ladies, a new morality tale for a new time


The spruiker

Lords and Ladies, I beseech of your time as I come before you to continue the tale of the kingdom wherein resided Tiny-er-er O’penmouth. I beg of you to bring to mind my last tale when, although no more than a lowly jester, he created himself anew as Tiny Napoleon O’penmouth, creating visions of his own grandeur which triggered unease among the Lords and Ladies of his land. Tiny Napoleon O’penmouth dreamed of setting his aim higher, of placing his new majestic self above his Lords and Ladies, something they could not countenance but nor could they speak of it except in the concealed comfort of their great halls; so instead they stealthily spread tales of revolting peasants in Tiny Napoleon O’penmouth’s own green great hall.

The tale continues: the Lords and Ladies strike back

The Lords and Ladies secretly send their envoys into Tiny Napoleon O’penmouth’s green great hall, to speak in muffled tones among the jesters, clowns and goblins gathered therein: he is frightening the peasants, they whisper; they are abandoning their fields and forges; if this continues the peasants will revolt and storm the castle walls, burn the great halls to ash; then there will be no need for clowns and jesters — the goblins, however, may yet prosper in a chaotic land, they hint. The clowns and jesters anxiously survey the goblins among them: they always feared whether they could be trusted and now the emissaries fan the embers of internal discord.

The jesters, clowns and goblins mutter among themselves. What can be done? How can the peasants be returned to their fields, despite the rising waters and the seemingly endless fires, despite the demonic tales of the tree monks? They murmur and plot. They whisper and plan. And the Lords and Ladies, with their whispering crusade, adroitly prepare the way for their man, Mal Co’d-turn-a-bull.

Mal Co’d-turn-a-bull is a man of substance, not an inept jester. Although not a lord, he possesses his own castle, grander even than those of some of the Lords and Ladies. He gained his name from the legend he could turn a charging bull at 30 paces with his withering smile, that he could quiet raging peasants, even lull them into sleep, with his three hundred mellifluous words — whereas Tiny Napoleon O’penmouth was limited to three words. The Lords and Ladies were confident he could charm the peasants into working harder and longer without them even noticing.

The ghostly heralds of the Lords and Ladies glide like wisps of wind among the jesters, clowns and goblins of the green great hall and slowly but surely their stories spread and take hold: they tell the clowns, jesters and goblins they can keep their places in that hall only if Mal Co’d-turn-a-bull replaces the upstart Tiny Napoleon O’penmouth. The thread of mutiny knits itself quietly into a golden gown. And it is ‘quietly’ until Mal C’od-turn-a-bull strides confidently, defiantly to the centre of the great hall and declares he will now be ruler of that edifice. Tiny Napoleon O’penmouth asserts he is still master of the green great hall but, by then, the clowns, jesters and goblins have succumbed to the whisperings, have come to believe the tales that Mal C’od-turn-a-bull will restore tranquillity to the kingdom — and allow them to continue feasting and debauching in the green great hall.

Tiny Napoleon O’penmouth has now disappeared into his paper castle, where some still protect him but their cause is now lost — or perhaps lost only for now. He retains a place, now isolated, sulking in a dimmed nook of the green great hall, no longer its possessor, but still with a remnant of goblins who surround him and chatter excitedly of the dreams he and they had dared. They sometimes prattle among themselves but, as yet, can do nought to undo the prodigious smile of Mal C’od-turn-a-bull.

The Lords and Ladies are well pleased. The parvenu jester is replaced with a man of (almost) their own class, a man who appreciates their desires and wants, who is cognisant they require seclusion within the shelter of their castle walls and ignorance among the peasants so as to pursue their artful, gold-making dealings. Mal Co’d-turn-a-bull well understands such artfulness for he has practised it himself.

Almost immediately the peasants are calmed. They like the timbre of his words even if they do not fathom them. He tells them only he can conquer the rising waters and endless fires — but he does nothing. His words alone are enough for now, convincing some that this illustrious man empathises and will eventually quell the waters and the flames. Behind the castle walls, the Lords and Ladies smirk in relieved delight. Already their man has won over the peasants, just as they had foreseen, his endless numbing words and glowing smile working their mesmerising spell on the ignorant, unwitting peasants.

Mal C’od-turn-a-bull moves among the peasants, among the impoverished and outcast and pronounces that no longer will the knights and yeomen ride against them but still the peasants with the matches in their ragged coat pockets are covertly watched, sometimes furtively whisked away to fetid, windowless dungeons.

He rides slowly by the peasants in his own imposing coach.

‘What about Godwin’s coach?’ a ragged, mud-clad peasant shouts from the throng.

Mal Co’d-turn-a-bull does not like being reminded of the time when he thought the coach of another prominent rival, Kev de Flick O’Hair, had been plundered goods. As it transpired, it was the peasant Godwin spreading falsehoods. That was a mistake in his past that he desires be left there. But this peasant, who, indeed, must be hiding matches in his pocket to bring forth such a matter, has not forgotten. How many others out there also remember? Mal Co’d-turn-a-bull ponders that question but continues by without bothering to pause or answer. His flowing words cannot simply decree that incident to invisibility. But as he moves genially onward, his hand moves almost imperceptibly at the coach window, and the yeoman guard spirit that peasant away with barely a soul noticing and, if they do discover the matches in his pocket, he may never be seen again.

The tree monks are also not convinced. They harangue the peasants: ‘Until he does something about the rising waters and endless fires, you should not be deceived by his milky words. Demand he walk with you here in the mud and rising waters. Demand he confronts the fires himself. Then challenge what he is willing to do.’

Yes, the tree monks are invigorated by his presence. He does not denounce them as bellicosely as Tiny Napoleon O’penmouth once did. He smiles benignly upon them, promises a few more trees that they may scramble upon, but passes them by as if his passing alone should satiate their exclamations of doom.

“There will be changes”, Malcom Co’d-turn-a-bull tells the carefully assembled peasants and lingering tree monks. ‘If I think what I’m doing or not doing is not working well, or if working well could be done differently, be done in a better way … but I will only change those things that need to be changed, that aren’t working well, or aren’t getting the results I … the Lords and … the results you want, or good results that help you or make life easier for you, or help you get more done in less time, or even the same time, but more … We live in an exciting time and we can …’

Mal Co’d-turn-a-bull has much more to say (he has not yet reached his three hundred words), and does say much more, but it is somewhere about that point in his oration that peasants begin slumbering or returning to their work: yes, even work is more interesting than this, even scrabbling in the deepening mud.

Deep within the living soul of Mal Co’d-turn-a-bull dwells the certain knowledge that the Lords and Ladies are masters of this world and he hovers deliciously close to them. Unlike the uncouth jester he replaced, he is welcomed at the dining tables in the halls of the Lords and Ladies’ castles, is accepted into their company, where he exchanges pleasantries, where the Lords and Ladies deviously suggest the peasants do not actually require very much to be happy. ‘That is the way of the world’, they entice him, offering another goblet of wine, another pheasant’s egg topped with caviar from a distant kingdom. Mal Co’d-turn-a-bull dips his silver spoon into the black fish roe. ‘You must beguile them. Another wine? You must fulfil your duty to your own.’ Mal Co’d-turn-a-bull appreciates that, has always believed in the privileged right of the Lords and Ladies to fashion their money-making ways.

‘We will need more wood for the forges so they can burn longer and produce more horseshoes, barrel hoops, sickles and scythes, swords and axes, and all our other useful tools of metal. There will be more work for the tree-fellers and the carters carrying the wood. We will all be better off,’ Mal Co’d-turn-a-bull announces to the peasants.

‘That means felling more trees,’ the tree monks lament. ‘That means more smoke hanging over your homes during the still winter nights, veiling your vision on the roads, making your children cough,’ they add. Some peasants nod their heads knowingly but the yeoman guard keep their watchful gaze upon them.

‘Tree monks will be left more trees’, Mal Co’d-turn-a-bull promises somewhere through the long distance of his discourse but nimbly fails to reveal where. The Lords and Ladies have determined they will be on vastly separated knolls at the kingdom’s far edges, where tree monks can do no damage — only the most ardent fire-threatening peasant will travel that far merely to consult a tree monk or be influenced by their heretical teaching.

‘And you on the farms, you will be able to till more soil, grow more food for your families and neighbours who all will have more work. And they can choose their work’ but Mal Co’d-turn-a-bull conceals that most of the increased produce of the fields will fill the tables of the Lords and Ladies (and the next tier below them, people of his own ilk — he will do well from this extra work and all he has to do is entrance the peasants to do it).

‘There is no longer any need to be afraid. We are a kingdom of opportunities for all’, but especially the Lords and Ladies (and me), he mutely continues. ‘Take heed of the greatness of … of our … of your kingdom and how much greater it can be if we all work together, if we each work as hard as we possibly can, if we contribute …’ Blah, blah, blah! Yes, again, somewhere around this point peasants begin to nod off or wander back to their dank fields and smoky forges.

There is certainly more work being done if only because the peasants do not well endure Mal Co’d-turn-a-bull’s prolixity, the myriad words, his phantasmagoria of words.

For now the kingdom glows, reflecting the boundless, unceasing smile of Mal C’od-turn-a-bull but dangers lurk. There are goblins with spittle-laden words hissing that the peasants are simply lazy, avoiding, when they can, their labouring duties to their Lords and Ladies, that the peasants must be left with no choice other than the dank fields and the cough-inducing forges, and there is no reason to stem the fires and rising waters. The Lords and Ladies do not discourage such hateful words but sit by idly, taking satisfied account and awaiting their next opportunity.

There are goblins who yet believe Tiny Napoleon O’penmouth is their true leader and still believe in his word. They could yet turn against Mal Co’d-turn-a-bull. And the clowns and jesters cannot be relied upon. Mal Co’d-turn-a-bull just smiles his beatific smile, and no-one yet knows whether that will be enough.

For now, the Lords and Ladies delight in the emerging new shape of their kingdom.

For now, the future seems clear but more smoke rises, more eerie night fogs descend, and more muted thoughts choose another time for expression.

What do you think?
To understand some of the references in this tale, we encourage you to read the earlier ‘Lords and Ladies’ tales linked at the beginning of the piece.

Will Mal Co’d-turn-a-bull continue to lull and charm the peasants? Will Tiny-er –er O’penmouth continue idly accepting his fate? How long will the Lords and Ladies continue to delight in their newfound wealth? Come back in 2016 when the tale continues.

Next week 2353 sums up the year as we saw it on TPS.


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6/12/2015Ken What a charming piece of satire you have given us. Like all good satire, it cuts close to the bone. When Tiny Napoleon O’penmouth was ignominiously ejected from high office, a palpable sense of relief swept over the electorate, even amongst Liberals. The Liberal Party finally accepted what the voters had been saying almost since he became prime minister: that he was a dud. The Liberals eventually realized that he was the most incompetent, the most ideologically driven, the most vindictive, the most embarrassing, the most disliked prime minister of this nation in living memory. He made several pathetic attempts to rebuke those in his party who were agitating for a change of leader by portraying the Liberal Party as ‘not like the Labor Party’, not like the dreaded Party of discord that threw out two prime ministers in rapid succession. His admonition fell on deaf ears. Embarrassed by his continual gaffes, clumsy missteps and stupid mistakes, perturbed by his appalling electoral appeal and frantic that he was dead set to lose the next election, a solid majority of Liberal Party members decided a change was essential for survival, just like the Labor Party! They decided to go for a moderate leader, one not prone to negative hyperbole, one that seemed to have positive ideas about how to govern a nation of 23 million people with a GDP of almost 1.4 trillion dollars, one not focussed on destroying opponents at every opportunity. They chose Tiny Napoleon O’penmouth’s nemesis, Mal Co’d-turn-a-bull. The people were relieved. They celebrated. Opinion polls reflected the popularity of the decision. Fearing a Rudd-style backlash of vindictiveness and sabotage, the electorate was mightily relieved when in his final statement as prime minister Tiny Napoleon O’penmouth assured us that: “[i][b]There will be no wrecking, no undermining and no sniping”[/i][/b]. The people suspected that they were being suckered once again by Tiny Napoleon O’penmouth. They were right - no sooner had the words escaped his mendacious lips that the wrecking, undermining, and sniping began. His henchmen, some of whom shared his ignominy as they too were demoted, began to agitate. Some openly showed their disdain for the new leader Mal Co’d-turn-a-bull; some abandoned the Liberal ship; some expressed support for their fallen leader. The Liberal Party was not like the Labor Party after all; it had its own methods of sabotage, its unique strategy for destabilizing the new leader, its well-tried sniping tactics, its own brand of undermining. Tiny Napoleon O’penmouth lurked in the background still insisting that ‘the Liberal Party was not the Labor Party’, while all the time fuelling the fires of discontent. The net result is that instead of ending the year with an exhibition of unity, instead of riding the wave of popularity resulting from Mal Co’d-turn-a-bull’s ascension to the top job, instead of setting its sails to catch the trade winds that would propel it to another election victory, the Liberal Party is looking rattled, frayed by discord, and uncertain of what 2016 promises for it. Meanwhile, Tiny Napoleon O’penmouth, who [b]still[/b] believes he was a great prime minister, behaves just as Rudd did, still certain that he would do better than his successor, still harbouring ambitions for a comeback from his uncomfortable position on the backbench. He has no insight at all. He will not accept, indeed cannot accept that the people simply don’t want him! All he has pumping for him are a handful of hardcore conservative discontents. Although he still insists ‘the Liberal Party in not the Labor Party’, he wants ‘to do a Rudd’ to come back even if it wrecks his Party as Rudd wrecked his. Maybe Tiny Napoleon O’penmouth anticipates that he can emulate Rudd, which of course would make the Liberal Party just like the Labor Party after all! Ironic, isn’t it!

Ken

7/12/2015Ad You seem to be under the misapprehension that the characters in this tale are based on real people. Surely not! :-) The other aspect of Mal Co'd-turn-a-bull is that he is the Lords and Ladies man, or translated to the modern world, represents the money-makers, the bankers and big business, not the peasants and the workers, despite his words. He will make the peasants' conditions harsher so as the Lords and Ladies can make more money. If this really was Malcom Turnbull, he would be deregulating the labour market, making it more 'flexible' (reducing penalty rates and other conditions) and providing government money to support new businesses -- oh, he is doing that! Perhaps you are right, and the characters are real!!!!

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7/12/2015Ken At last the LNP has thrown up someone who is beginning to look like a real prime minister in Mal Co’d-turn-a-bull. Until now, we wondered if he was just a more articulate, better-groomed spruiker of Napoleon O’penmouth’s policies. But today, he set himself apart from his predecessor by talking sense about the essential contribution of science, technology, engineering and mathematics, (the so-called STEM subjects) to innovation and business, and to the future of Australian enterprise and its prosperity. He talked as an optimistic, experienced businessman who understands the vital contribution of science to business. The contrast with Napoleon O’penmouth could not be starker, more complete. [b]Yet we read in a Marl Kenny article in [i]The Age[/i] that already Peta Credlin (do you have a satirical name for her? Hint: my highly insightful spell check threw up 'Cradling') is planning a comeback for Napoleon O’penmouth!!![/b] Cannot she see, cannot Napoleon O’penmouth himself see how hopeless he was as prime minister, how negative and pessimistic were his words, how destructive were most of his actions, how antediluvian was his ideology, how counterproductive was his very presence in high office. Is there no one in the Coalition who can talk seriously to these two and insist they disappear from federal politics forever? The electorate does not want them anymore, most LNP members don’t want them anymore, business does not want them anymore, no one of any importance wants them anymore. They have nothing to contribute but ideologically driven, conservative dogma and all the incompetence and nastiness that flow from that. I certainly hope that the Liberal Party is NOT like the Labor Party, that it will not try to emulate Labor by reinstating a discredited, failed leader, and thereby inflict more misery on a long-suffering electorate. We don’t deserve that; Australia doesn’t deserve that; the world doesn’t deserve that! Please spare us! Let's hope Mal Co’d-turn-a-bull lives up to the promise that his announcements today evoke, let's hope he is not just for the Lords and Ladies (as was his nemesis), but for us all, working men and women of good heart!

Ken

7/12/2015 Ad Yes, an interesting announcement today, at least a move in the right direction. But two things: no indication of where the money is coming from and it is over our years, which makes it about $250 million a year -- a reasonable amount but not a lot and it only parlly makes up for the funding that was ripped from the CSIRO and other research bodies by Abbott and Hockey. And I am not the only one who questions Co'd-turn-a-bull's commitment to the workers. See this piece on The Drum: http://www.abc.net.au/news/2015-12-07/manning-how-well-do-we-know-the-prime-ministers-politics/7005572

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7/12/2015Ken Thank you for the reference; interesting and informative reading. I'll look forward to the others in Paddy Manning's series. Of course, the key question is: 'When Co'd-turn-a-bull comes to a fork in the road, will he travel down the traditional businessman's track signposted 'Profit', or will he take the one signposted 'Fairness' that he speaks off, which supports the workers and the less-well-off? Or is there a middle road signposted 'Fairness to All'?

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8/12/2015Folks The seemingly inevitable outcome from the moment of his extrusion from the position of Federal Treasurer has eventuated today: Joe Hockey will become Australian Ambassador to the US next month. [i]The Huffington Post[/i] announced the appointment with a headline: [i][b] American Express, It is Ambassador Hockey now[/i][/b], and followed with “[i]In a widely-expected move, former Treasurer Joe Hockey has been appointed Australia's next ambassador to the United States. “The 50 year old will start his new role in Washington next month. “In announcing the appointment, Foreign Minister Julie Bishop released a statement with literally nothing positive to say about Hockey, instead, recounting his resume.”[/i] Julie Bishop seems unimpressed. Last night on [i]7.30[/i] Malcolm Turnbull was non-committal: "[i]Joe is a great Australian and I look forward to him serving Australia in other capacities.”[/i] Today he was moved to expand: [i]"Joe is a great Australian, he is one of the most engaging, persuasive people I've known in public life. He's held very high office, he's got great contacts in the United States, he's a passionate patriot but [has] a good understanding of how Washington works already."[/i] Sounds to me like ‘damning with faint praise’. Writing yesterday in [i]The Sydney Morning Herald[/i], Mark Kenny offered no bouquets either: “[i]Dumped federal treasurer Joe Hockey is to be announced as Australia's ambassador to Washington on Tuesday. “The announcement comes hot on the heels of the North Sydney by-election in which voters lined up to smash the Liberal Party for causing the mid-term poll, with an estimated 13 per cent swing away from the governing party's candidate, Trent Zimmerman. “The plum DC post is regarded as Australia's most important diplomatic position, and will charge the man who famously delivered the decidedly undiplomatic 2014 budget with keeping Australia-US relations sweet at a time of tensions in the US-China relationship, and political upheaval in America with a presidential election next year.”[/i] As far back as September when the rumour broke, even News Corp via [i]news.com.au[/i] delivered a backhander. Under the headline: [i][b]Joe Hockey in line for plum post, despite being a political loser who was almost sacked[/i][/b], Malcolm Farr wrote: [i]Joe Hockey is headed to Washington thanks to an apparent lapse in his “end the age of entitlement” campaign. “The suggestion is the former Treasurer believes he is entitled to a top diplomatic post as balm for the wounds of losing a political contest.[/i] Farr concluded: “[i] Whatever the former treasurer’s capacity for the job – which might prove considerable – there is something grating about a politician being let down gently after even his peers wanted to get rid of him. “And when that politician had been demanding austerity from others, and making decisions which affected the jobs of thousands, there will be voters who are more than bemused. They will be angry. “In the eyes of those voters, Mr Hockey will be rewarded for a job not well done.”[/i] Even Janet Albrechtsen wrote in [i]The Australian[/i] back in October: “[i]Being Australia’s ambassador to the US is a demanding, highly operational role that requires equal stocks of drive, diplomacy, foreign policy acumen and ambition. Hockey may have leftover stocks of ambition in the cupboard, but is it directed towards being a hardworking ambassador? The gig is not for the faint-hearted or the faintly interested. If Hockey becomes ambassador to the US, people are entitled to wonder whether the best person scored the job.”[/i] [b]I strongly agree with these sentiments of dismay and disgust. In my view it is grotesquely improper to reward a failed treasurer, one who so loudly declared that ‘the age of entitlement is over’, with so rich a prize for being such a hopeless disaster as the steward of our nation’s treasure. Insensitive, punitive, incompetent and an Abbott sycophant, he brought discredit to the Coalition, enraged his colleagues, who wanted him gone, and evoked deep anger in those he so callously disadvantaged. Even the big end of town had few good words to say about him. No doubt he would consider this reward as HIS just entitlement. Find me one commentator, one punter out there who agrees. He goes with egg all over his face. Let’s hope someone scrubs it off before he represents us in the most prestigious ambassadorial posting of all! And let’s hope he makes a much, much better fist of this job.[/b]

2353

8/12/2015Is Hockey the best perosn for the job - certainly not - however there seems to be a practice between the US and Australia of appointing ambassadors who have impecible political connections rather than real world connections to the posts in Washington DC and Canberra. So much for merit.

Ken

8/12/20152353, Ad Here's the link on Wikipedia to Australian Ambassadors to the USA. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Ambassadors_of_Australia_to_the_United_States Quite a few politicians in among them, going back a long time. Peacock was given the job almost 20 years ago, and former Senator Robert Cotton had the job in the early '80s. Even where public servants have been appointed in more recent times, they seem not have been career diplomats but senior people who were close to the government of the day (although most had experience at senior levels in the Department of Foreign Affairs). It is an interesting list and tends to confirm that, as you say, it is treated more often than not as a political posting.

2353

8/12/2015Ken, Thanks for the confirmation above. Could this bloke -> http://www.brisbanetimes.com.au/environment/un-climate-conference/paris-un-climate-conference-2015-tony-abbott-was-brought-down-by-the-un-christopher-monckton-says-20151207-glhtco.html make an appearance in your next Lords and Ladies piece. It would be hard to make this up!

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8/12/2015Folks I wonder if you are as incensed as I am at Joe Hockey's elevation to Australia's ambassador to the United States? To express my disgust, I have written: [i]The story of Joe, the jolly ambassador - a children's tale[/i], which is now published on [i]TPS Extra[/i]. I hope you enjoy it. Your comments are always welcome. http://www.tpsextra.com.au/post/2015/12/08/the-story-of-joe-the-jolly-ambassador-a-children-s-tale

Ken

8/12/20152353 Thanks for the link to Monkton's comments. Gees, I didn't know Abbott was so important that the UN saw it as essential to bring him down. First the CIA and Gough and now the UN and Abbott. Makes for an interesting story, well worthy of Lords and Ladies.

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9/12/2015Folks [b]Breaking News![/b] The old king wants to stay on! He reckons he ought to come back to the counting house because he did such a good job storing money there! Jolly Joe's glad though that he's going; he's so angry that if he stayed on, he reckons he'd try to get even with the people that brought him down! That could be ugly. [b]Read all about it on [i]TPS Extra[/i]![/b] http://www.tpsextra.com.au/post/2015/12/08/the-story-of-joe-the-jolly-ambassador-a-children-s-tale#comment

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9/12/2015Folks See what Bernard Keane of [i]Crikey[/i] has to say about Jolly Joe's diplomatic skills: http://www.tpsextra.com.au/post/2015/12/08/the-story-of-joe-the-jolly-ambassador-a-children-s-tale#comment

2353

11/12/2015And Hockey claimed we had a budget problem. http://www.abc.net.au/news/2015-12-11/by-election-costs-taxpayers-$450,000-after-hockey-quit/7019394

TalkTurkey

13/12/2015Comrades, Greetings. Ken Here it is Sunday morning early and I haven't even written a reply to the continuing adventures of O'Penmouth and Mal Co. This morning I wrote on Twitter: When *J*U*L*I*A* was Guinevere Windsor was Sir Lancelot Oakeshott was Sir Galahad And Canberra was Camelot Which jives with your tale of course. But Camelot is no more. I used to be so motivated to write here, I couldn't wait to get into it. Today I was looking at some stuff I wrote here and printed back in 2010/11/12, gee it makes me sad, all that hopeful desperate energy of my own and everybody else's, vanished for nought. And now, often, I have trouble writing any comments of substance. It's all down to Abbort er er Tiny and his band of thugs crooks and spoilers. So much work done with such labour by Labor, destroyed in a matter of months. Words don't cut it. To Leftish political literati such as Swordies there is a sense of despair watching the destruction, and not feeling there is any concerted effort to rouse ourselves apart from useless bloody blind "marches". We just go home again and watch a tiny mention on TV - if we're lucky. The energy is utterly wasted. There must be something more we can do! In the wider community there is a pervasive sense of injustice, of cynicism, of impatience with authority (and especially politicians.) All fed by Murdoch and his shock-troops of course, conflating some issues like *J*U*L*I*A*S alleged house rorts twenty years ago, burying others of real import such as #AshbyGate, keeping people incensed at gnats and swallowing camels. Which of course is why some young people - the most caring ones really - are so profoundly alienated: they are aware of everything via the Internet, deeply resentful of the raw deal Right-Wing governments such as ours are handing them, incensed at the failure to focus on global issues, instead spending vast resources on making War. Shock Jocks foment hatred and that stirs the cauldron, a few young men do something desperate, that adds to the brew, self-fulfilling prophecies arise like a miasma and now we are faced with the legacy of Howard & Hanson, millions of Australians scared of a tiny possibility of being blown up by Muslims, without for the most part having a clue about the religion nor the countries from which the people they so fear derive. This rant is going nowhere. But as I said - words don't cut it. Ad I think you are too kind by a long chalk to Turdball. I might go into that more in a separate post. Anyway here's another Twimerick I posted today Cronulla fella named Al Accidentally ate some Halal & still at the snack bar He yelled ALLAHU AKBAR! His hoon mates throw rocks at him now! The feared strife at the decanniversary of the Cronulla riots fizzled, but you know, the real violence of the Thuggee cult encouraged by Murdoch and Abbort simmers just below the surface. And Turdball has no control over it. It will surely erupt again and again. Oh and Jolly Joe? His posting just shows how compromised Turdball is. He's not scrubbing up well at all as PM. He has made no hard decisions at all, and his lauded Science & Innovation initiatives are in fact feeble, risibly inadequate to undo the disruption wrought by two years of Tiny, including most poignantly his very own destruction of a proper fibre NBN. The only reason he's populistically popular is that he's not O'penmouth himself.

Ken

13/12/2015Talk Turkey I can well understand your lack of motivation. Instead of an exciting new world, we are going backwards and Co'd-turn-a-bull is undoing none of the damage wrought by O'penmouth. Labor appears to be doing little but i think some of that is a result of a lack of media coverage. It is trying to do the right thing and actually announcing policies but the announcements get very little coverage in the MSM. I can only hope that they are being more successful on social media. (On the other hand, Turnbull is also a savvy social media player.) Turnbull has a new challenge now that the climate agreement has been reached in Paris. Like all such documents it has plenty of room for governments to manoeuvre but it clearly sets out aims and some processes and our government's commitments fall considerably short of what is required. Will Turnbull now bite the bullet, use the Paris agreement, and declare that his government will actually do more to create a green, clean economy -- I doubt it. Will Labor use the agreement to beat the government about the head? It should but whether it will remains to be seen. So TT, I think there are opportunities for Labor but it is not taking them all and when it does, it does not get the MSM coverage. I agree that Turnbull has, so far, done nothing to suggest he will be a good PM, apart from smiling and saying a lot of the 'right things'.
I have two politicians and add 2 more; how many are there?