Fill the ice bucket, pop a tinny and stand well back as Max Gross shoots his load for Xenox News, Australia's ONLY fair-dinkum news blog.
Shh. Hear that? Sounds like white noise? It's the sound of a policy vacuum.
And smell that? Mildew? That's the odor of dead scruples.
Given the depressing lack of substance, intellect or choice in candidates or media scrutiny, I had planned to ignore the looming federal poll but then, watching former Foreign Minister Alexandra Downer and the sinister ex-Prime Minister John Winston Horror himself wrestling for media attention, I was driven alarmingly sober. And then the Editorial Board of Xenox News ran me to ground, the buggers.
Alrighty then, brothers and sisters, here comes yet another election. Jesus, we're becoming like the befuddled bloody Yanks, in permanent campaign mode, the nail-scraping, eyeball-gounging, brain-numbing bullshit of career politicians braying in our ears and faces 24/7, on all frequencies, across all fronts and increasingly - menacingly - meaningless to anyone living in the real world.
"Real". That's the word being bandied about as Rupert Morlock's "news" galleons dominate the media high seas and air waves with all guns blazing in an attempt to overthrow the recently elected faux-Labor government. In particular, Ms Julia Gillard, Australia's newby Prime Ministerial stand-in, is being targeted like an ant under a magnifying glass in midsummer, while Opposition "leader" Monsignor Tony Abbott, the neo-con contender for her job (but instead is just a bum, let's face it) gets away with policy murder.
Policy? What policy? Want to know what the Friar of Fraud stands for? Wait five minutes. Don't like that policy? Wait another five minutes. As for Principal Gillard, political expediency is the order of the day. And Australia's zionists couldn't be happier.
Between the two main contenders in the sack-race for the nation's top job, one is monotonously moving forward and the other wants to turn everything back. Carrot-top or screwball? It's YOUR choice, punters.
Mark Latham, former Labor leader gone feral, is urging Australians NOT to vote. Neither Labor nor Liberal candidates deserve the effort. I guess he knows what he's talking about. After all, he accurately identified members of the former Howard govermnent as a conga line of suckholes leading all the way up the sphincter of former U.S. Pretzel George W. Bush.
So I reckon Latham's called this one correctly. Both Liberal and Labor are scurrilous, unprincipled and self serving, not to mention utterly beholden to the powerful vested interests in the corporate world and elsewhere that fund the major parties. And anyone out there who thinks all that democracy entails is casting a vote every 3 years or so, well, you dickheads deserve the government you get. Enjoy!
Latham's point was earlier amply demonstrated by the reappearance of that venomous old Tory twat Dame Downer - all pomp and no circumstance - pirouetting into the media spotlight in search of a grandstand and a hand-job on 60 Minutes or A Current Affair (Cough). He was an incompetant disgrace as John Howard's Foreign Minister and nowadays is little more than a Dickensian caricature of the effete Tory "elite". He remains a shameless wanker.
Remember this bozo promoting the then-government's slogan "the things that matter" years ago and joking about it by referring to wife-bashing husbands as the "things that batter"? Yep, a class act. Knee-capped former Labor leader Kevin Rudd must really have had something against Turks and Greeks to have lobbied the U.N. to appoint the dipshit Dowager as Special Envoy to Cypress. This vain, talentless bitch should have been made special envoy to sunny, bankrupt Nauru. Or Kazakhstan.
And then there's that other odious little has-been and serial offender, Howard's old Treasurer Peter Costello. Always good for a laugh, Costello still raises a chuckle but little more. No ticker, no pecker. But I guess if he'd hung around after the Lying Rodent's ouster it would be his back bristling with Minchin's and Abetz's knives, not Turnbull's. So sit back, Pete, stay relaxed and comfortable and scribble the occasional fly-weight op-ed for the amusement of the rusted-on blue-rinse brigade and watch the increasingly chaotic antics of your cretinous colleagues while you fish around for a new gig. Hey, a buck's a buck, right? Too bad Br'er Abbott doesn't have your comic genius. It's all in the timing, as you very well know. But at least the mad monk's a nifty media distraction from the real game, right?
And the "real" game is maintaining the status quo for the mega-money men who really run this and every other country. What, you think it's a coincidink that no sooner had he declared war on those poor, misunderstood mining magnates, Kevin Rudd (recently breaking all previous popularity polls as preferred prime minister and hailed as Labor's saviour) got shafted and shifted to the back benches? Tax the stinking rich ratbags who dig up our resources for a pittance, flog it to the Chinese and rake in the big bucks at tax-payers' expense? No way, no how, bye bye Rudd and hello Gillard. It was that quick. Arriba! Arriba!
Such was the reward for the workaholic nerd who steered this nation through Dubya's Global Financial Crisis, the worst economic clusterfark the world has faced in almost a century. It was due to Kev's quick action that our economy was rated stronger than any other developed nation by such disinterested parties as the World Bank. Not good enough for the "real" powers-that-be who had no qualms in sacking thousands of their precious workers in order to maintain their own lifestyles when the clusterfuck struck. You can bet Ms Gillard knows which side of her Irish arse is buttered.
But back to the pantomime otherwise known as Australia's electoral process. How anybody could consider the back-stabbing Br'er Abbott - nothing but a product of factionalism within his fractured party -a candidate for Prime Minister is beyond me. His paternalistic, prehistoric, narrow and just plain nasty idealogy is no secret, yet voters - and the media - continue to give him a free pass while grilling Gillard. Abbott's media stunts, throwaway punchlines and disturbing cackle are merely the tip of a big ugly iceberg.
Brothers and sisters, let us regard the Liberal legacy of neglecting - scratch that - its core ideology of dismantling universal health and education services, its total disregard for national infrastructure and its shredding of THE social contract. You know the one: the contract between government and governed; between us mug punters and those ambitious smartarses who get to make the laws after we vote them into office? They get their lofty positions (and pension and superannuation schemes so generous that we mere mortals can only have wet dreams about it) and we get equality, egalitarianism, social services and a fair go for all? Right? Wrong!
Fark that, according to a dozen years under the Man Who Would Be Ming, John W. Howard, and his salivating cohort of privateers, sales shills and robber barons. The mission of the "Liberals" was and is: short term corporate profit at the expense of long-term social progress. Fact is, the Libs - like their U.S. equivalent, the Repugs - strive to undermine democracy, not promote it, and have no wish to see it grow (It afffects their bottom line too much).
It was once said that Australia's general prosperity "rode the sheep's back"; it has since been reduced to the simplistic mantra of dig-it-up-chop-it-down-and flog-it-overseas. We manufacture nothing and our most innovative projects head abroad for any hope of decent R&D funding and support. Most folks miss the point of Donald Hornes' oft-misquoted term: the Lucky Country. Horne was being sarcastic.
What happens when Australia is just a big hole in the ground where our mineral deposits once lay? What happens when the last magnificent old-growth native forest is reduced to matchsticks? What happens when there's no water supply left to privatise? What happens when the bloody beer runs out? Ah, well, she'll be right, mate: the increasingly obvious effects of Global Warming should concentrate even the narrow minds of our oblivious movers, shakers and policy makers... Eventually. Perhaps. Or maybe not. Tanning lotion, anyone?
As for the Libs' hollow claim to greater fiscal reponsibility, to date their promises of new spending and tax cuts apparently amount to some $32.5 billion, of which less than 1 per cent has been submitted to the Finance Department and Treasury for costing. Their excuse is that they do not trust Treasury not to leak details before time.
Excuse me while I piss my pants laughing. Clearly, we mug punters are supposed to have forgotten that faithful Liberal stooge Mr Godwin Gretch, who did such a great job reporting from within Treasury to Lib faction leaders.
Yet Shadow finance minister Andrew Robb - yet another dessicated old husk left over from the execrable Howard years - claims the Libs have actually "submitted a large body of work to our independent accounting group" and are simply waiting with bated breath for release of its assessment.
But hang on, folks, how do the two words "OUR" and "independent" fit together? Well, they don't, do they. It's the usual Tory tosh in a clumsy attempt to pull the wool, as we Aussies say when served a great big steaming hot cow pat on a plate. Nudge nudge, wink wink, say no MORE.
So let's take a gander at that figure again: less than 1% of Br'er Abbott's extravagant, tub-thumping, off-the-cuff expenditures have been funded. That's what comes of no-policy, on-the-run decision-making. And we all know how phoney Tony loves to run... and jump... and skip... and swim... and surf... and ride bicycles. We also know that he has little interest in - or comprehension of - economic issues.
And so, as Aussie voters clutch vomit bags and endure a veritable cornucopia of meaningless slogans - with Jungle Julia ceaselessly "moving forward" and Tony the Tosser stoically "turning back the boats" - what else can any civilised human being do but reach for another vodka spritzer? Most people I know have gone numb at this ceaseless barrage of bullshit. They have switched-off and are no longer listening to any of the candidates, Greens included. It's all too much, as the old Beatles song goes.
Yet the asylum seeker "boats" issue in particular is really a non-issue, a ludicrously confabulated beat up by the cold-blooded Lib-gNats designed to fan the frenzy, fears and prejudices of the incoherent, the ignorant and the just plain racist, and give them irrational expression. A standard Howard Era/Error tactic, well learned by the Lying Rodent's bastard offspring, the aspiring, perspiring phoney Tony.
Numerically, "boat people" seeking asylum Down Under are miniscule to the point of insignificance. You know it, I know it. Barrister Julian Burnside quite rightly highlights the simple fact that asylum seekers do NOT break any laws by heading our way. The Universal Declaration of Human Rights grants everyone and anyone the right to seek asylum in any territory they can get to. Cut and dried.
Burnside further notes that Australia attracts roughly 240,000 migrants each year, and that about ONE WEEK of new migrants ("legals") equals ONE YEAR of asylum seekers arriving by boat ("illegals").
Not quite the "flood" breaching our precious borders that the lying Lib-gNats would have us believe.
Barrister Burnside has even calculated that, at the current arrival rate, if all the desperate, fearful boat folk reaching Australian shores were granted immigration status and given free tickets to the Grand Final, it would take about 20 years for them to fill the Melbourne Cricket Ground.
Sadly, on this critical issue, Ms Gillard seems content to play the same morally bereft game as Br'er Abbott. But what else can one expect from a shameless supporter of Israel's Gaza seige and its ongoing atrocities against Palestinians?
Political expediency, they call that. Pragmatism. Sane, civilised folk call it a farking disgrace.
Mental Health is another issue being used as a political football with facts, figures and sundry promises venting like farts in a stalled lift. Mental health was neglected throughout Howard's disastrous prime ministership - and by Br'er Abbott, his Minister for Health and Catholic fanatic.
Mental health funding MUST be increased and appropriately targeted. Already Gillard has done so and has promised to do more. So go Julia!
But Br'er Abbott's flippant promise to open 1000's more hospital beds if elected PM is simply not credible. Phoney Tony knows damn well that he can't open a single extra bed without providing for more nurses. Thanks to his legacy as health minister, most facilities today can't even staff the beds they have. Ask any of the used, abused and exhausted nurses who have sold their blessed souls to what remains of public health care in this country.
[Mmm, me like nurses... ]
Alrighty then! Farking Abbott! He's the whacko who once remarked: "I won't be rushing out to get my daughters vaccinated against cervical cancer". Yep, and John Howard made him the nation's Health Minister.
Sheer raving nutbags, the lot of 'em. Jesus wept!
Folks, what we have here in Australia are two fundamentally right wing political organisations, each desperate to sound more conservative than the other, with the Lib-gNats led well to the extreme right under extremist John Howard, prompting Labor to follow its snail trail of lies and villainy into the right-wing wasteland. As one keen observer noted in the Melbourne Age the other day, we are governed with the intention of pandering to the so-called "swinging voters", "the most ill-informed, selfish and easily manipulated segment of the electorate".
No wonder we can't handle complex, big picture issues such as global warming and climate change.
It certainly explains why Australians kept the Lying Rodent empowered for so long despite his record of deceit, scaremongering, pork-barrelling, mendacity and cruelty. It's no surprise then that some mug punters find Br'er Abbott appealing. Sadly, the only "real" alternative to that kook is Ms Gillard, who has demonstrated her own capacity for prime 100%, grain-fed, free range bullshite... to put it mildy.
The gimcrack waffle currently passing for political debate is so blatantly shallow and dishonest, one despairs for the future of democracy in this wide, brown land girt by sea and by Japanese whaling fleets.
Brothers and sisters, are you as I'm bored shitless with all this "pragmatism" in politics as I am? Don't you wonder why there is no Australian pollie with passion, vision, honesty and honor? Why there isn't anyone genuinely willing to expand democracy rather than further bastardise it for short-term personal, party-political or monetary gain? Anyone?
Pour me another ice cold spritzer, please, Tina dear.
Desperate for one more wafer-thin vote (Like the one that got him his dubious "leadership" gig) , Abbott is busily - faithfully - priming the paranoia pump, as per his mentor's How To Win An Australian Election handbook. The Flakey Friar recently told reporters: "I find the burqa a particularly confronting form of attire and I would very much wish that fewer Australians would choose it." Linking it to the "expansion of fundamentalist Islam", he apparently plans to mimic French racists by outlawing the garment.
I can see the printed t-shirts now: "Ban the Burqua". Alongside the Lib Party logo.
Alrighty then, Br'er Abbott, I'm up for it but let's do the job right. Let's clear the decks for good and all. Let's crack down on religious fundamentalists generally, such as your god-bothering self.
Personally, I find Catholic nuns in their all-black, head-to-toe costumes "particularly confronting". And there's a bloke on my morning train who always wears an overcoat and balaclava, rain or shine. And kilts make me very, very nervous. Especially on windy days. So, let's go, Tone, let's settle this crucial, nation-wide issue of disturbing clothing once and for all and start right where it counts with that silly old bugger in Rome who wears a glittering frock and a weird pointy hat.
As for the Liberal-National "coalition", without the Libs, the gNats would have shriveled up and blown away decades ago. And without the gNats the Libs would not have the numbers to oppose the Labs. And the profound lack of intellect - or even just plain common sense - among the Lib-gNats is hideous to behold.
The fact that Australia's "swinging voters" kept these creeps in office for almost a dozen years - known as the Howard Era/Error - says a lot about Aussies generally. Wake in Fright, anyone? Chock full of nuts, empty vessels, religious crackers, rightwing extremists, parochial hacks and gutless ratbags, each of these political parties on its own would be a laughing stock if... Oh, wait...
Some of the more astute punters out there bemoan the flumbuggery that passes for polly-speak. Having in a previous bizarre existence written a few speeches for a few politicians, I can honestly say that no pollie will ever honestly say anything if it can at all be dishonestly avoided. And they will do so in as many "positive" words possible. Boyz and grrls, we are led by cynical frauds, regardless of party membership. It's all farce.
Media parrots prattle about the search for the "real" Julia Gillard but have apparently accepted phoney Tony Abbott's facade. What's "real"? Get real!
Politics is pantomime, now more than ever. And the contenders for leadship of our nation are playing dress-ups and acting out their assigned roles. As voters we get to pick the best costume. And this, I'm told, is our laudable democratic process. No Oscars. And no wonder the Afgans don't want a bar of it. It's all one great big shit-brick coated in pink icing and sprinkled with yummy hundreds-and-thousands. Mmm, good!
The only good news, relatively speaking, is that the High Court of Australia has just overruled the old Howard government laws that closed electoral rolls on the day that writs for a federal election are issued.
In other words, the mendacious midget's insidious laws, enacted in 2006, aimed at castrating universal suffrage and disenfranchising around 100,000 Australians, were ILLEGAL. Those punters - and others - will now be able to vote.
So, muchos gracias and massive congratulations to the hard-working grass-roots advocacy group GetUp! [ www.getup.org.au ] for a successful challenge to at least one of John Howard's assaults on our young, enfeebled democracy.
Ah yes, the "privilege" of voting. Tell that to the poor bloody Afghans who we conned into this fine, unblemished democratic mainstay at the point of a Predator missile but who continue to be slaughtered by U.S. drones, pissed-off Talibs and government goon squads. Illigimate President Hamid Karzai must reckon he's got it pretty sweet. He "won" his rigged election and was applauded for it in Washington. U.S./NATO forces protect his crooked regime. And Aussie soldiers die for it, sent there by Howard, kept there by Rudd and Gillard.
Deposed U.S. Presidense George W. Bush supposedly won office... twice... despite voting machines not working, disputed and uncounted ballots, disenfranchised voters (mainly blacks in black neighbourhoods), different voting laws and processes in different U.S. states and a minority turnout of voting Americans. It also helped having a corrupt brother as governor of the key state experiencing voting "discrepencies". Karzai learned from the masters of the U.S. electoral process.
But I digress slightly. I was banging on about Australia's former PM Honest John Howard. A real man of the people, a "man-of-steel", according to the war criminal George Dubya Bogus. In a word: a scumbag.
Not that it stopped the lying rodent from crawling out of a shithole in the ground to squeak to the media and bag Gillard, solemnly proclaiming that "The great problem is we have people resenting what they see as the democratic process as being interfered with. "
So sayeth the devious old sociopath who, as prime minister, used the "democratic process" to wipe his arse with. How he must miss the limelight of the "world stage" of which he and his coy missus were so, so fond.
OK, so the election cometh and a vote's a vote but let's not be naiive. Selfish business interests rule the world. Politics is merely a business tool, as was recently and brazenly demonstrated when the Obama government supported the very "businesses" (aka corporate criminals) that had caused the Global Financial Crisis. Invading Iraq too was a business opportunity with, among others, the then U.S. vice president Dick Cheesey himself directly profiting from the bloodbath.
Locally, Libs and Labs both make sure they don't tread on too many "business" toes. To repeat: the moment Rudd challenged powerful mining interests he was Dead Man Walking. Ms Gillard will not make the same mistake and Br'er Abbott has made his obeisance abundantly clear and will continue the fine Lib-gNat tradition of pimping for billionaires. Don't kid yourself who you're really voting for.
Communism failed because its ideals were corrupted and the movement was hijacked by cowardly thugs and venal opportunists. Democracy is similarly failing because it too has been hijacked - as US President Eisenhower, of all people, warned in 1961 - by the military-industrial complex and the monied interests that really call the shots - literally - in the U.S. and around the world. Deceit, conflict and militarism is their mainstay. "War on Terror" anyone? Well, at least my trusty, rusty Rodent-approved fridge magnet is still working: not a terrorist in sight since I stuck it on the fridge door. Or before. Luckily for the Masters of the Universe, there's always another boogie man easily manufactured for any occasion.
Lions and tigers and bears, oh my!!!
Anyhoo, no matter which goose shits out a polling day golden egg on August 21, I reckon the piles of puke, piss and bullshit will be well worth enduring as long as that demented "Family First" wingnut Steve Fielding loses his illigitimate Senate seat.
But I urge Xenox News readers to keep this in mind:
In every Australian federal election the outcome is decided by around 20% of Australian voters. The media calls them "swinging voters" (aka headless chooks).
That's a minority dictating to the majority.
Incredibly, 10% of voters make up their mind on election day just as they walk into polling booths!!!
And really, if a punter can't decide who to vote for until the last minute - or can be swayed by the increasingly hysterical political advertising that bombards us daily - then they really don't have a clue.
But then again they're probably drip fed moron-juice by The Australian, Sky News and Ruprecht Murdoch.
Viva Xenox News!
Finally, I quote - without permission but with sincere apologies and great respect for his/her insight - from a comment in The Age, by a Sydney blogger going by the call sign Morbone:
"The boats! The boats! The boats! The boats! The boats! The boats! Everyone's biased against me!! The boats! The boats! The worm hates liberals! The boats! She won't debate!! I'm too busy for a debate! Must stop the boats!! Warringah Mall is FULL OF BOATS!!!!! BOATS EVERYWHERE! I have children, she doesn't! BOOOOOATS!! The ABC is biased because Q&A only gave me TWO WHOLE SHOWS to myself this year!!! AND DID I MENTION THE SCARY SCARY BOATS!!!!!!"
Pure genius, Morbone, wherever and whoever you are.
So go ahead, folks, cast your hard-won vote, by all means, but don't get distracted from what really matters in life, for there is nothing "real" about the antics of our political contenders. Regardless of political stripe, preferred mantra or distinctive odour, they're all members of an exclusive, by-invitation-only private club. And you're not.
What a ludicrous farking circus! Nothing but clowns, fairy floss and horse shit.
Just remember to water your herbs, brothers and sisters.
Cliffhanger election? The only things hanging are the ideals of democracy itself: hung, drawn and quartered.
This was Max Gross for Xenox News, ailing for action, feeling no traction, fed up with factions... and please, Tina dear, pour me another chilled Moskovskya.
P.S., people: vote for Party With Tina. Yes we will!