Who was here when this Poll Result was announced?

Petro the phantom poll poster has released the details of the latest poll conducted by the most respected polling company around “Polldaddy:”

The poll was conducted over the Christmas day/Boxing day holiday, which as most respectable polling companies agree is the optima time to conduct a political poll as people are free from their working life and can really concentrate on the important issues of the day.

12,000 people were surveyed across a broad spectrum of  the Australian public but with 2 common denominatiers that they were all extremely attractive and also extremely intelligent. Go figure . The margin of error is approximatly .0000013% but some Possums may disagree with that and say .0000014%.

According to Anthony Greys calculator this would reduce the opposition to around 5 seats and some pretty unhappy ex mps.

The now very powerful Prime Minister Julia Gillard when asked about the poll stated that polls come and polls go but Alan Jones is still a low life piece of hyena waste.

The leader of the opposition Tony Abbott was seen running around in circles trying to bite his own bum. When asked to comment he stated he is very busy doing important things for Australia and polls smolls I need a new set of togs.

The deputy leader of the opposition Ms. J Bishop ( who by the way is barren never having kids. something is wrong with hey heff. opps sorry wrong party) has called for an inquiry to be held because apparently the main pollster once received a banana paddle-pop 20 yrs ago from his then girlfriend who worked at the local snack bar and did not pay for it.

The shadow treasure Joe Hockey was spotted at Abduls a well know and delicious eatery in surrey hills Sintown,trying to eat the menu.

When asked for a comment he  stated while trying to decide between the vegie. platter and some falafels that Hogwaorths a very reputable accounting firm assured him that as 83+9 only =92 the missing 8% will ensure victory at the next election.

Dennis Shamaham head political wanker at Australia’s  biggest loss making paper the “stralyin” has stated that although things are looking grim for the coalition the sausages are almost cooked and the onions are ready ,but he has lost the BBQ. sauce.

Over at the iceage the champion of the Canberra press galley  Michelle Gratenn has stated in no uncertain terms that this may or not be good for the ALP. and indeed may or not be bad for the Coalition. You don’t get much more straight forward political insight than that.

We at the tragis who commissioned this poll so we own it and understand better than any of you people can tell you in good faith,hands on heart that YES it is a good poll for the ALP.

And the Bludgers Award goes to….

The esteemed Press Gallery continues to fantasise that Question Time and related parliamentary events should be the determining factor in the public’s mind when it comes to political analysis.

Perhaps this isn’t as surprising at it may seem, as the word often missing from “Press Gallery” is “Parliamentary”. Their be-all and end-all is what happens in Parliament, or to be more precise between 2pm and 3.10pm during Question Time and the the endless points of order, SSOs, and other stunts brought on by the Opposition.

They also maintain the fiction that “both sides of politics” are as bad as each other, because for every tactical stunt by the Opposition there is a Dorthy Dixer or a balancing catcall from the government.

But consider the logic…

Why would the government seek to wreck its own parliament?

This simple and obvious question is rarely asked, because the answer is also obvious: childish as it may seem to say it, in the overwhelming number of cases,

“It wouldn’t. The Opposition starts it, almost every time.”

Q. Which side makes the overwhelming majority of pointless Points Of Order? Which side calls unnecessary (and 100% doomed) Suspensions Of Standing Orders? Which side asks virtually no policy questions at all (causing, for example, Craig Emerson to complain that he’s not received a single question on Trade in the life of the Parliament. Ditto for questions from Pyne on Education, Turnbull on the NBN, and Bishop on Foreign Affairs – except for her bogus “Boganville” question, which doesn’t count).

In short, which side is out to wreck Parliament, to discredit it and make it unworkable, despite promising (when it suited them) that we would see after 2010 a new paradign, a “kinder gentler polity”?

A. The Opposition.

If Question Time is to elicit information, what choice has the government but to ask itself these questions, as ridiculous as that may seem (perhaps more ridiculous because the Press Gallery ignores every one of these Dorothy Dixers)?

In the Daily Telegraph today we have a Steve Lewis penned article listing a supposed “poll” of Press Gallery journos “awarding” gongs to various ministers and members for things the Gallery finds important: Best Moment, Biggest Gaffe etc. The contributors to this “poll” keep themselves anonymous, perhaps a case of protecting their journalistic sources, even though their sources are themselves!

Ironically the single mention of policy is an award for the “Smooth Introduction Of The Carbon Tax”, although from the way the same bunch stenograph the Opposition’s outrageously exaggerated claims about the Tax, you could be forgiven for believing they thought it was an abject failure. So, a bit of a surprise there.

Predictably, Steve Lewis cites the Peter Slipper texts as the low point of the Parliamentary year. Well, he would say that wouldn’t he, seeing as Lewis himself was the chief enabler and purveyor of the egregious abuse of process that Mr. Justice Rares found these Slipper “revelations” had become.

Lewis published the stories found to be irrelevant. Lewis suborned the diary leaks found, in part, to prove the abuse of process.  The female genitals comments that finally caused Slipper to resign were not even uttered while Ashby was in Slipper’s employment, but in the spirit of stitching-up the Speaker for anything and everything, Ashby threw them into the mix at the last moment anyway, after Slipper’s abuse case had been made, and therefore not included in the judgement. Nothing to do with Ashby’s employment, so probaby they would have constituted part of the abuse of process, if they had been made public earlier. Rares did not mention these, but hey, he only had 76 pages to make his case! He’d have needed hundreds of pages if he was to really give this disgraceful legal episode the write-up it well and truly deserved.

So, we have the Press Gallery delivering their judgement in their terms of what made up the best and worst of the year in politics. They have a monopoly on Parliamentary coverage, so naturally they would reckon what goes on in Parliament is the most important thing of all. You could call it “Protecting their proprietary interest”.

But what was truly important, and while we’re at it, what do the PBers believe were the worst journalistic performances of the year?

I’ll kick off with the Bludger’s Award for “The Most Morally Bereft, Nihilistic, Senseless and Unnecessarily Cynical Article Above And Beyond The Call Of Duty” for Michelle Grattan’s recent column on the upshot of the Ashby court case, where she said that a scandal over which she had once, before the judgement was delivered, called on the Prime Minister to “fall on her sword” had become, by the time that judgement was delivered, a “battle which had been lost, but a war that had been won by Ashby.”

Grattan could not find it in her heart to express one scintilla of synpathy for the ex-Speaker, despite the travesty of justice that had brought about his political demise.

Why? Because even though the judge believed the case was an abuse of process, Ashby had succeeded in wrecking Slipper’s reputation and ruining his career from a position of millions of dollars worth of subsidized legal aid and the liberal use of lies, irrelevancies and outright bullshit, spread evenly around the place by the very people who now call this “the Lowest Moment”.

The Press Gallery’s collective indifference to the tainted process by which Slipper was destroyed was disgusting, but Grattan’s column stood out for its particular brand of casual, indifferent cruelty. In response to all this morally barren behaviour by the complainant and his lawyers, plus the salacious coverage by herself and her colleagues while they thought they could get a resignation from Gillard, Michelle Grattan wrote one of the most disgusting “So Whats?” in recent journalistic history.

So, PBers, I give you “The Bludgers Awards For Putrescence In Australian Journalism And Politics”.

Other nominations for the worst of the journalistic-and-political worst will be enthusiastically considered.

Criticising Swan’s “Broken Promise” is just dumb heckling…













There’s been a lot of carping on lately about Swan’s”broken promise” on the matter of the Surplus.

But after it’s acknowledged that the promise was broken  – HAD to be broken in Swan’s estimation, and that of most of the public, plus most professional economists – what next?

Where does the finger pointing get us? What economic flaw does it fix? None, as far as I can see. It’s a cheap shot, a heckle, pretty obvious and unproductive.

Swan needed to promise a Surplus to give the nation some hope, to try to balance the dimwitted negativity of the Opposition, their business and political allies.

He needed to put Hope supported by cautious optimism on the table, as a counter to the trash talking that has been going on.

And until very recently it looked to be a good bet, until it became clear that for every dollar cut from the Federal Budget, the Commonwealth might lose more than that dollar in revenue.

I am still amazed that newspapers and TV dare to criticise the government’s performance when their own is so woeful. But there you go. Apparently THEY are the experts.

Everywhere I go I see businesses struggling. Many of the proprietors I talk to see little connection between their firm’s performance and the way the economy is being talked down by the right of politics.

This is one piece of political cynicism that can’t be pinned on the government. No “both sides do it” here at all. Why would Labor trash-talk their own economy? It’s the Liberals who are guilty this time, no doubt about it. But why do they do it?

A confident economy is prepared to take risks, to make bolder investment decisions than one which hides with its money under the bed. Why would what Katharine Murphy calls the “putative Prime Minister” want to destroy an economy? In order to save it?

The press buys the “Broken Promise” meme to a certain extent (although its bleating hasn’t been half as bad as it might have been). But what does pointing out Swan’s abandonment of further cuts accomplish?


It’s a simple dummy-spit, an “I told you so.” But so what? He tried, he failed despite giving it a good go. In any case the Budget will be much closer toward being balanced than if Swan had done nothing at all. Not even the Coalition is promising a river of Surpluses now… I think that’s the latest message.

Is whingeing and heckling about “broken promises” going to reconstruct the economy, boost confidence, create employment? Of course not. If it has any effect it can only make things worse by further eroding confidence.

However, the public – after spending two years weeping and gnashing their teeth, condemning the BER and other stimulus programs, bawling that “She lied!” – paradoxically WANTS more stimulus. They are clamoring for an end to the cuts and a resumption of the gravy train.

While it’s not clear that Swan will oblige 100%, and end to looking for savings is a good start.

If anything, Swan’s failure wasn’t mistakenly promising a surplus, but was his inability (admittedly with the cards stacked against him by a bitter media) to convince the public that they were being duped by Abbott’s short term strategy turned long-term economic trench warfare.

Ironically they’re punishing Abbott personally for his negativism on the economy and then punishing his political opponents for not being able to surmount that negativism. In punishing both sides of politics, the public can once again avoid examining whether they, themselves, are not their OWN worst enemies.

Of course the harpies and moaners only do this because they can. Things aren’t THAT bad, in fact things are pretty good. If we were in a real pickle, we’d not be able to afford to complain. We’d be too busy suffering for real. It’s the ultimate irony of this situation, if you will, like a North Shore matron complaining she couldn’t get an appointment for her poodle’s haircut.

Business has become used to the idea that if they take a temporary hit in trading conditions, with the payoff being a reuturn of the Liberal government, then it’s worth the sacrifice.

The only problem is that this was all supposed to have happened by mid 2011.

Any number of things could have brought it about – a successful Convoy protest swelling into a national movement, a No Confidence vote on the floor of the house, the death or incapacitation of a Labor member in a marginal seat, a scandal that caused someone to be convicted of a crime that disbarred them from holding a seat, a defection of the Independents (in particular Wilkie) and (I’m sure) you all have your own favourite method by which Abbott was going to move from Sydney’s Northern beaches to Kirribilli.

None of these happened. The most plausible was death or incapacity, but so far no go. The rest showed just how inept and in the thrall of their own publicity were the Coalition and their supporters. They really thought they could pull it off! Instead they’ve talked themselves into a near-recession.

They didn’t succeed, and the short term tactic where business would take it on the chin for a brief period has become a war of attrition, fought by the same means, but damaging only to themselves. They’re wrecking their own businesses and cheering themselves on for doing it!

“Home by Christmas {2010}” has become a sick joke, except that by now it’s doing real harm.

Crazy, I know, and hard to fathom, but look at what the Tea Party are foisting on the American public. Things can get a lot crazier before they get better. At least we don’t have too many guns here, yet.


Forum posts will be every few days, but we don’t kid outselves that the PB Tragics will stick strictly (or even loosely) to the topic at hand, so don’t get yourselves into paroxysyms of grief if – or when – you stray from the OP’s subject matter.

The basic rules are the same as William’s benign autocracy with one exception. Trolls will be dealt with severely, and banned sooner than William might have done so. One warning only. But as this is just a casually moderated blog for the Xmas season, don’t expect instant gratification if you feel offended.

We’re into free speech here, and anything that interferes with that Free Speech will be excised from the blog permanemtly.

Apart from that you can say what you like within the usual norms of civil discourse and avoidance of slander.