The Horror Years: 1996 – 2007
As Aussies celebrate the first anniversary of the demise of the Howard government, Petro Georgiou, the so-called “conscience” of the defunct Liarberal Party, has coincidentally announced his intention to quit politics. Georgiou was arguably the only Howard government MP to openly question the Mendacious Midget on his mandatory, discriminatory detention laws in the Northern Territory, his “anti-terrorism” legislation that was basically anti-democratic, and his unfair and just plain ludicrous citizenship test.
Small beans, perhaps, given almost 12 grotesque years during which Howard’s Orwellian lies, weasel words, grift, wars and extremist ideology – neatly fitting in with the demented policies of US Presidense George W Bogus- shaped Australia and the world’s view of Aussies generally.
And the buzzards are circling. Salivating contenders for Georgiou’s prized seat apparently include the tawdry branch stacker Joshua Friedandburned, a di
rector at something called “a major international investment bank” and formerly a “senior adviser” to the defunct Foreign Affairs Mistress Alexandra Go-downer as well as to the Lying Rodent himself.Also reportedly interested are John Rotscum, Tory cheerleader and conductor of the Institute of Public Affairs brass band and cane toad collectors club.
Brothers and sisters, if this is a glimpse of the future, pity the residents of Kooyong. Not! These delusional born-to-rule ratbags simply can't accept that they are on the nose.
In the first instalment of The Howard Years, the ABC TV documentary series currently screening weekly here in Melbourne, journalist Fran Kelly asked a rogues gallery of discredited former federal ministers, unscrupulous apparatchiks and fawning bootlicks to describe the Lying Rodent in a single word.
It was great fun watching these shameless, gutless hacks pick at their scabs, toss turds at each other like zoo monkeys and jerk off into the mayonnaise of history.
As to Kelly’s question, after the usual dissembling from the smirking lips of ex-Treasurer Peter Costello (the Worm Who Would Be King If He Had the Cojones), the nutless wonder gave a surprisingly accurate descriptor for former Prime Minister John Winston Horror.
Yes, indeed, old Johhny Jingo was as relentless as cholera. Or, more appropriately, a dose of shit-spraying salmonella. “I don’t resile from that,” was his mantra. He was also merciless, obdurate and cruel, discriminatory, punitive and despotic.
Okay, he’s no paranoid bloody Stalin, no genocidal Hitler, but under the right circumstances, in the right place and right time, who knows? My guess is Johnny would have fitted nicely into one of those spiffy SS uniforms, doing the right thing in times that suited him. He said as much himself, while a laughing stock in opposition when not even his own party took him seriously: “The times will suit me”.
And, yes, there IS blood on his hands, not the least of which is the blood of literally countless Iraqis in Johnny’s full-throated support for the Bogus program of US military expansionism throughout the Middle East.
Threat was inflated. Goals were disguised. Money was made. Squillions in bloody treasure was amassed by those connected with the untouchable Bush crime gang. And Australia was there for the ride, an accomplice to war crimes because of John Winston Horror's blind ideology.
Interviewed for The Howard Years, former Admiral Chris Barrie - who retired as Australian Defence Force chief in 2002 - debunked Johnny Jingo’s claims of compelling evidence for the Bush regime’s imperial catastrofuck which erupted in 2003.
"I have to say,” Barrie says, “even up until the day I retired, I never saw any evidence that said suddenly we had to go off and do a job in Iraq."
And the former chief of the navy, Vice-Admiral David Shackleton, confirms that the Howard government disrupted efforts to tell the truth about the notorious so-called Children Overboard Affair – the truth that children were NOT thrown overboard by their asylum seeking parents - because the lie suited its election campaign strategy. In fact, the Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet's office explicitly commanded the Navy to “not humanise the asylum seekers”. Check out the whole disgraceful story at http://www.safecom.org.au/kids-overboard.htm.
To co-o pt a famous movie line: the bullshit piled up so fast you needed wings to keep above it.Shock, awe and brazen lies.The times suited Johnny all right.
Here was a bloke who would send armed troops to prevent a Norwegian rescue ship from off-loading terrorised asylum seekers onto Australian soil.
A bloke who glibly dismissed calls to investigate the circumstances surrounding the drowning of hundreds of refugees when a packed vessel sank in waters patrolled by the Australian navy.
A bloke who didn’t blink at imprisoning infants and their traumatised families for years within desolate, razor-wired prison camps in the Australian outback or on isolated islands. (Hell, Johnny even bribed the corrupt Nauru government to maintain an Aussie concentration camp thereon, hidden from lawyers, journalists and those of us demanding a fairer, responsible, more humane approach to asylum seekers.)
A bloke who shrugged off ministerial conflicts of interest and sat by while his batshit Health Minister Tony A’butt, a Catholic fanatic, gave representatives from two rabid anti-abortion groups key roles in developing a government pregnancy counselling service.
A bloke so despicable that last year, before Barack Obama won the Democratic nomination, he called the now US President Elect a terrorist sympathiser, declaring: "If I was running al-Qaeda in Iraq, I would put a circle around March 2008 and pray, as many times as possible, for a victory not only for Obama, but also for the Democrats."
A bloke whose mean and tricky rhetoric Josef Goebbels smiles at from the grave.
And just last week, as if Australians needed reminding of the Liarberal Party’s inherent canker, the repugnant shadow foreign affairs spokesthing Helen Wellenmellon Hoonan, reiterated the former PM’s slur that Obama’s election would encourage “terrorism”.
Numbnut Australians swallowed 12 years of this sort of venomous, slanderous tripe!
And also last week, the Lying Rodent itself appeared on the rabid, right-wing US TV show Fux News as a so-called “commentator” on the G20 leaders' meeting.
As XN readers well know, Ruprecht Morloc’s Fux News only broadcasts wild-eyed repugs, Zionist zealots and ratbag neocons, especially those who breathe deep of the pungent aroma emanating from the anal sphincter of the world's most unpopular politician and the most dangerous and incompetent US president ever, the outgoing George Wanker Bush.
Johnny wasn’t showing his ugly mug on American smellovision to sing the praises of his Labor nemesis in promoting international efforts to help repair the Bushwhacked global economy. Au contraire! The mendacious midget was there to poo-poo descriptions of the current global economic crisis as the worst since the Great Depression. He also took a swipe at the Mandarin-speaking nerd who had deposed him as Prime Minister.
For a politician who has always cocked a snoot at self-serving commentary by former leaders, John Horror's appearance on Fux was not a case of political amnesia. It was the mean and tricky bugger’s standard modus operandi, duplicitous waffle so familiar to Aussies but less so to fact-starved American couch potatoes straining to see the TV screen over their obese, burger-filled bellies.
So, Rudd-be-praised for routing this cockroach, for formally saying the s-word to indigenous Australia, for closing the refugee gulags on Nauru Island and in the outback and for vowing to improve accountability, reversing the excesses of the extremist Howard years when accountability was just a cheap sheet of toilet paper to wipe the Lying Rodent’s arse with.
And also for dumping one of the silliest of Howard’s notorious pet projects, the discriminatory Citizenship Test, with its laughable reference to a dead old cricket player in a daft question to be removed from a new Test currently being drafted.
Now, to the question of the Lying Rodent’s legacy.
For more than almost 12 sickening years, John W Howard oversaw a harder, colder, more socially divided country. Morally depraved from the outset, that lying piece of shit refused to dump the execrable political neophyte Pauline Hanson as a Liberal candidate and then blatantly adopted her vile, racist policies. Like the demented Bush in the USA, Howard cynically used the atrocities perpetrated by Saudi fanatics on 11 September 2001 as a political tool with which to smear his critics and frighten the natives.
In his final 2 years as PM, that deceitful, smarmy lickspittle, bereft of a shred of moral fibre or honesty in his body, oversaw 7 consecutive rises in interest rates. He turned a supposedly free and fair Australia into a global grotesque by treating refugees and their children as criminals. He relished going to war with the idiot King George Bush and the psychotic Deadeye Dick Cheney, and failed to ever criticise either one of those war criminals in public, for anything.
Johnny Jingo’s Australia couldn’t care less about his deceit, his duplicity, his corruption, his treasonous selling out of our national interest or his bloody-minded refusal to acknowledge the very real dangers of global warming.
And how about Howard’s lofty proclamation of a new ministerial code of conduct that he introduced in 1996 on taking office? He dumped it after a slew of breaches forced about half a dozen departures from ministerial and parliamentary secretary posts. Other high profile ratbags, such as former workplace relations minister, the execrable Peter Wraith, whose son ran up a $50,000 bill on his ministerial telephone card, and the incompetent ex-veterans affairs minister De-Anne Killy, who failed to seek a declaration of personal interests from a staffer, survived the scandals when Johnny realised he could lose his entire cabinet if the code of conduct remained!
The fact is, to these unscrupulous Tory opportunists, government IS business.
John Winston Howard plunged Australia into an illegal war crudely justified by lies, where major public bodies could and did engage in scandalous multi-million dollar rorts with impunity; where defence and public service agencies were blatantly politicised; where Rottweilers, guns and ski masks were the accoutrements of industrial policy; where the flames of fear and loathing were continually stoked; where monstrous amounts of public money were lavished upon exclusive private-schools while public schools were derided and neglected; where the poorest Australians were persecuted and humiliated for their failure to be money-grubbing go-getters; for middle-class welfare on a vast scale through the buggered public health system, the private health insurance industry and the taxation system; where struggling NGOs who dared criticise the government’s divisive, discriminatory policies had their funding withdrawn; where the shameless manipulation of fear of “others”, including unionists, Muslims, refugees and aborigines, got the Lying Rodent over the line in each election he won; where senseless xenophobia, venality, self-interest and making scapegoats of the less fortunate became not just a national spectator sport but a patriotic prerequisite.
He burned multi-millions of tax dollars on propaganda instead of on infrastructure to fool Australians into thinking that his unfair WorkChoices laws were good for workers but then, sniffing an angry wind, dumped the name – but not the legislation – and spent even more of public funds on even more propaganda in a failed attempt to convince the electorate that a change of NAME was really a change of policy.
Johnny the jogging jackass encouraged the rise of extremist, right wing nationalism, conned Australians into believing we were all strolling down the Yellow Brick Road to shareholder heaven, clung to power with the remorseless grip of a cadaver, and then fled the scene of his crimes relatively unscathed to wallow in Zionist accolades and neocon plaudits, leaving the whole damned mess behind for others to clean up. Just like his bum chum Bush.
Castles made of sand… and bullshit.
Most Aussies like to think of themselves as fair dinkum, meaning they’re willing to give anyone coming from anywhere a fair go, but John W Howard betrayed the Australian way of life and all Australians, even his own electorate, which finally and decisively cast its vote against him.
As for the Howard legacy, well, that’s already coming to fruition as 12 years of fear-mongering, deception and lackadaisical economic policy screws with Rudd’s election promises. Forget the Rodent’s budget “surplus”, contrived as it was by withholding funding from critical social services like public health, education and infrastructure. The nation has hit an economic iceberg and its all hands on deck, dick!
Okay then, let’s do the dot point thing, then.
Here is one man’s version of the Lying Rodent’s legacy, in no particular order:
1. The Iraq invasion
3. Global warming inaction
4. Vilification of same-sex couples
5. Tampa/SievX/children overboard
6. Dr Mohamed Haneef/pre-election desperation
7. Sending the army against indigenous Australians
8. Non-core promises
A list too short, I know. No doubt, astute Xenox News readers can supply other dot points. Please do!
When the insidious Johnny Jingo finally drops dead and flushed down the s-bend of history where he belongs his epitaph will be "Here lies John Howard". And lies. And lies. And lies…
Meanwhile, with national economies around the world suffering the consequences of Dubya’s combined imperial spending spree, grand theft auto and Wall Street clusterfuck – and with Aussies owing a combined total of around $44.6 billion on their credit cards – PM Kev has his hands well and truly full. And no doubt, once the dust has settled down, the broken crockery swept up and the doors set back on their hinges, the electorate will vote Labor out and vote the Liarberals in again.
Yes, folks, that’s how our version of democracy works here Down Under!
And if you think fresh young Kev has problems cleaning up after rancid old Johnny, check out Obama, “good cop” to Dubya’s “bad cop” (but a cop, nonetheless).
According to Wired Magazine's Danger Room blog, military officials are suggesting that the next Pentagon budget should be $US581 billion, a gobsmacking $US67 billion more than the previous one (and that's disregarding most of the treasure being frittered away on George’s Afghan and Iraq adventures).
And on that note, here’s what Paul Krugman, Nobel Prize winner in Economics, has to say about the parallels between the current economic and financial crisis and that of 1932: the emergence of a power vacuum at the height of the crisis.
Quoth Krugman: “The interregnum of 1932-1933, the long stretch between the election and the actual transfer of power, was disastrous for the U.S. economy, at least in part because the outgoing administration had no credibility, the incoming administration had no authority and the ideological chasm between the two sides was too great to allow concerted action. And the same thing is happening now.”
In other words, yes, we’re drifting down shit creek but we’re are about to hit the shit rapids. And after that? That’s right: the SHIT WATERFALL!
And as if anyone anywhere is still listening to his goofy bathering, the idiot President continues the free market sales pitch at APEC summit in Peru, urging countries to "resist the temptation to overcorrect by imposing regulations that would stifle innovation and strangle growth".
Either GWB really doesn’t comprehend that Elvis – along with the Colonel and the entire bloody road crew - has left the building or he thinks there is still some silverware left for him to steal before he and his cronies make their getaway.(Read Mr K’s full piece here: http://www.commondreams.org/view/2008/11/21-5)
And oh, by the way, MY single word descriptor for our former PM?
But hey! We’re celebrating, right? So let me conclude with the following little yarn.
An old priest lay dying in hospital. For years he had faithfully and selflessly served the people of the Australia’s national capital. Now his end was drawing near. He beckoned the nurse with a limp hand.
“Yes, Father?” said the nurse.
“I would dearly love to see John Howard and Peter Costello before I die,” whispered the priest.
“I’ll see what I can do, Father,” replied the puzzled nurse, and sent the request to Parliament House.
Sensing a good vox pop photo opportunity, Howard and Costello agreed to visit the dying priest.
When they arrived at the priest’s death bed, the priest took Howard’s hand in his right hand and Costello’s hand in his left. There was a lengthy silence as a look of serenity passed across the old priest’s weary face.
Finally Howard spoke. “Padre, of all the people in Australia you could have chosen to be with you at the end, why did you choose us?”
The old priest weakly squeezed the politicians’ hands and croaked his dying words. "‘I have always tried to pattern my life after our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ."
“Amen,” said Howard.
“Amen,” said Costello.
The old priest smiled, sighed, closed his eyes, and said, “I wish to die as Christ did: between two unrepentant lying thieves.”
This was Max Gross for Xenox News, sipping a chilled spritzer, whistling while he works and pissing in the wind.