Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Sanctimonious Scott Ludlam on Q and A in Perth

Disappointed I didn't know that Q and A was in Perth last Monday. If I had, I would have gone along and had a look.

Needless to say it was handled in the simplistic and biased way that we've come to expect from Tony Jones and their ABC. And it featured one of the more pompous hand-wringers in this state, Scott Ludlam of the Greens.

Not unlike his fellow inner urban nature boy from Victoria Adam Bandt, Ludlam has an affected, prissy manner. He's obviously desperate to convey an impression of perspicacity. On the contrary, the po-faced sneering actually highlights his infantile credulity.

Really, some of his arguments were amazingly puerile. Par for the course with the Greens, they were also incoherent and sanctimonious as all get out.

Take this contribution on the carbon tax:

SCOTT LUDLAM: I think it is a really useful question. When the wholesale price of electricity goes up 10% and somebody comes along the next day and slugs you for an import cost that’s 400% higher, I would be with Tony on that. I would be paying very close attention to what the ACCC is doing. But can I just ground this question very quickly as to why we didn’t vote for the first one is because it wouldn't have worked. The carbon price would have been one euro a tonne at the moment. That was why we didn’t vote for it. What Kevin Rudd has just done, for short-term tactical advantage, which I agree with Narelda probably will be quite popular, is sacrificed and cost us another year. This is about the weather itself turning against us. Could we please, just for a moment, ground the conversation about why we pass these kind of laws, why we are trying to prevent the worst and most dangerous impacts of climate change is because they will wreck the economy. They will wreck the economy not just here but all of our supplier and customer countries, within our life spans. This is not something for our kids to deal with. This is on top of us now. That is why we are coming to grips with this situation. I would like to quickly acknowledge and shout out to the kids at Power Shift in Melbourne, who have been conferencing on this stuff all day and over the last couple of days to try to do a better job than the old parties have been doing, quite frankly. Having Tony Abbott marching around the landscape saying, “Oh, it’s some kind of invisible gas. We're just wasting our time,” really, grow up. Grow up.

Eh? He's saying that Gaia has cracked the shits with us and is destroying the global economy via the climate. And the end of the world isn't just nigh, it's now! Then he tells us to grow up? Unbelievable.

Revealingly, Tony Jones let Ludlam deliver that whole balmy spiel uninterrupted, strongly implying that he agreed with it. In marked contrast Jones repeatedly interrupted the rational, measured Julie Bishop during the same discussion. 

Speaking of rational and measured discussion, that's what Ludlam himself says he wants to see more of during election time.

SCOTT LUDLAM: That’s okay. It’s good practice. Thanks to the questioner and thanks to Narelda for framing the discussion. We've both heard really measured contributions, both from Julie and Stephen, and if only that was the case during election campaigns, where we see political parties getting into a law and order auction, tough on crime, tough on kids, lock them up, stay safe, kind of really degraded political debate. What we should instead be looking at are exactly the kind of things that have been said here in a much more measured way, but it's not often what we get. We get things like the intervention, where they sent the army into the Northern Territory and totally disempowered people who are now campaigning against it being rolled out elsewhere. Look for justice re-investment. Look for transferring money out of the criminal justice system and into precisely the kind of services that people are talking about, it's hard to have that conversation if the election debate is degraded. So maybe we can continue this type of discussion over the coming months.  

So the pure and virtuous Ludlam doesn't like a "degraded debate" ...

Hell, this is politics he's talking about! It's not pretty but our elected representatives should be able to, and must, speak freely on these issues, no matter whose delicate sensibilities are offended.

Saying you don't want a "degraded debate" is just another way of saying you don't like debate at all. The last thing he wants is for politicians to "continue the discussion" as he claims. Clearly, he'd much rather they stop arguing and go along with what he and his fellow hand-wringers demand. It would be a refreshing change if he just 'fessed up and said openly that this is what he wanted.

But the height of his brazen hypocrisy came late in the discussion when the panel was discussing asylum seekers.

SCOTT LUDLAM: Just to remind us that these are human beings that we are talking about.

JULIE BISHOP: And they’re drowning at sea. And they’re drowning at sea.

TONY JONES: Yeah, I mean the people were clapping then but Julie Bishop made a very powerful point, it seems to me.

SCOTT LUDLAM: That they’re drowning. Absolutely.

TONY JONES: They are drowning at sea the way things are.

JULIE BISHOP: They are drowning at sea now.


JULIE BISHOP: That’s right.

SCOTT LUDLAM: And if you want to know why they are coming, go and see a film about it called No Fly Zone about what just happened in Sri Lanka that the Australian Government turned a blind eye to. And people will continue to leave there no matter how cheap and nasty the debate gets in Australia, no how many racist billboards go up that Tony Abbott gets to stand in front of. The people will keep coming.

For a start, Ludlam cares more deeply for the welfare of bilbies and quolls than he does about people. And the reason they are drowning in their hundreds is because of the very policies that he and his sanctimonious, censorious ilk espouse. 

What a silly, pompous, spoiled and most of all heartless child he is.

PS: In the ABC transcript, Ludlam's last little brain fart above is incorrectly attributed to Jones. Considering how similar their opinions on such matters actually are, it's easy to see how the error was made.

Saturday, July 13, 2013

"Surrogate grandparents" are a sad sign of the times

Surrogacy is usually defined as having someone else's baby for them. So we often hear about surrogate mothers. But now there's a variation on the term: surrogate grandparents.

It seems that increasing numbers of Australian families are so fractured these days that senior strangers are being asked to fill these traditional family roles. Parents of kids missing the gentle presence of caring codgers advertise for them online so frequently that law firms are issuing warnings about the potential legal complications of the practice.

The whole thing is bizarre and depressing. It's spookily reminiscent of elements of the comedy movie Dickie Roberts: Former Child Star.  In that flick, a former sprog celeb hires a real family to give him the experiences he missed as a child so he can land a part requiring the emotional maturity he never developed. 

Surrogate grandparents -- another phenomenon to go into the "life imitating satire" file, I reckon.

Saturday, July 6, 2013

Victorian Women's Trust maintains the rage over Gillard's fate

The way that victim feminists bemoan the fate of Julia Gillard is just too tragic for words. Take those tawdry ads taken out by the Victorian Women's Trust.

In them, they're perpetuating the silly claim that sexism was to blame for Gillard's demise. But as anyone with at least one eye half open and an IQ over fifty knows beyond a shadow of a doubt she lost the top job 'cause she was the worst bloody PM this country's ever known!

If sexism played a part it was that Gillard had a much easier run than a bloke of comparable incompetence. Hell, she was treated with kid gloves by almost all of the mainstream media throughout her prime ministership. And she had the support of the majority of her colleagues for months, if not years, after it was completely obvious she would lead Labor to electoral oblivion. It's highly unlikely they would've maintained support for a bloke in the same circumstances.

Sure, she copped a lot of abuse from punters infuriated by her endless lying and utter disdain for them, some of which was sexist. But she stoked the fire by making such an issue out of it. (One shouldn't feed the trolls, remember.)

And there were a couple of cases of journos saying offensive things about her and to her face. But these broadcasters copped torrents of mud thrown back at them, and one even lost his job (along with two others who dared to bring up issues about her past that were of legitimate public interest).

Most truly independent-minded and strong women would have shrugged the abuse off and got on with the gig. Yet Gillard milked it for all it was worth and tried to turn her reign into a soapie about the scourge of sexism with her as the heroine. Even after this cynical and devious tactic made her popularity plummet still further, thus cementing her fate, the hand-wringers continued to cry "victim"!

The bleating will go on forever, too. After all, there's nothing lefties love more than clinging to their bitter delusions. Think of all the unreconstructed Whitlamites who are still "maintaining the rage" over the Great Helmsman's sacking close to forty years ago, eh!

Still, there's an upside to all this wailing and gnashing of teeth. The more the sob sisters squawk and squeal about what happened to Gillard, the more sick and tired of this particular brand of feminism the electorate will become. As a result the odds of a woman like Gillard ever becoming PM again will be even further diminished.

So, keep shriekin' chickybabes! You're doing the nation a favour.  

Thursday, July 4, 2013

Kevin Rudd on last night's 7.30 Report was creepy and desperate

Fascinating to watch Kevin Rudd back in "7.30 Report Land" again. Like so many are now, I'm immune to his folksy fakery. So as Leigh Sales questioned him I was watching him much more critically than when he was PM previously. 

Rudd always struck me as being a bit robotic; not quite human. But this quality seemed far more pronounced this time. I kept seeing him as a nerdy Terminator, sent back through time to destroy Australia's economy! All through his interview I kept imagining bits of his face falling off, revealing the gleaming metal machinery underneath.

Now that we know what he's been up to over the last three years, the quirky but gentle persona he's so keen to present doesn't just look silly. It's downright sinister.

And the bit where he brushed off talk of vengeance was astonishing:

LEIGH SALES: Is there another reason: revenge?

KEVIN RUDD: Oh, good grief, no. Sort of past all that a long time ago. If I was so sorta wounded by the events of 2010, I would've gone offer whimpering into the corner a long time ago. I'm a positive sort of bloke, get on with the business and had we been travelling in much better circumstances, then I'm sure none of these events would've happened.

So, he's employing the same tactic of outright denial that Gillard used after she knifed him. Except it's even more absurd than when she used it. 

Fact is, he had heaps to do with Gillard's downfall. Spent much of his time plotting, leaking and poncing about in front of the cameras to damage her leadership. And on his third attempt he finally got rid of her! Then he turns around and with a straight face says he has no ill will towards her and had nothing to do with her ousting. Ha!

Clearly, in all that time he hasn't given much thought to how he was going to govern when he reclaimed the top job. The interview makes clear that he's policy light, and even though he dispatched Gillard, he's still totally dependent on her tactic of demonizing Abbott.

His attempt to characterize the conflict between them was truly desperate:

KEVIN RUDD: ... I think it's time you demonstrated to the country you had a bit of ticker on this. I mean, he's the boxing blue; I'm the glasses-wearing kid in the library - come on, let's have the Australian people form a view about whether his policies actually have substance, whether they actually work or whether they're just slogans and I'm prepared on each of these things to take him on directly.

Labor luvvies and pollies are always trying to smear Abbott as a thug and are forever reminding us of his love of boxing. (Actually I'm surprised Rudd didn't use their favoured word "pugilist".)

The reality is that Abbott is a highly intelligent and articulate former journalist and Rhodes Scholar whose arguments against Labor have caused them endless grief. The thug label was tired long ago, and I think that most of the electorate sees through it now.

There was plenty more in that interview that revealed how desperate Rudd is. I think he's going to lurch from one improvised tactic to another from now on. While his reign won't be the rolling disaster that Gillard's was it's sure to result in him being much less popular come election time than he is now.