We’re back. We’re back in federal parliament for another year and only a week in, the Liberal National Coalition are already fresh out of ideas and morals. The Coalition’s only major achievement last year seems to have been reminding Australians why they voted the Coalition out of office and why the Libs desperately need to feed so many Murdoch editors contra payments and What’sApp group leaks.
Politics, in all its crude glory, is amateur theatre for mediocre people. It provides a stage for those either driven by a lust for power for power’s sake, those who aren’t much good at anything else, or those who are simply insufferable rejected hams – which goes a long way to explaining how the Liberals endured Tim Wilson. However, we digress.
If you’ve ever doubted that the show business of politics is the business of obtaining power and privilege without possessing merit, take a look at the conga line of malcontents the conservatives trotted out in the Voice referendum last year.
We had old Warren calling us all academic elites which was fun times coming from a man who uses the honorary academic title of Dr. Mundine in his board of director positions where he reaps hundreds of thousands of share options, but nobody ever said politics wasn’t about hypocrisy.
We had Peter “The Thug” Dutton managing to operate the hidden levers on Jacinta without anyone seeing his lips move. It wasn’t long before David Littleproud emerged blinking from the hole he’d been hiding in during the entire referendum, fuelling a cooker frenzy by announcing our Jacinta was a dead cert to be Australia’s next Prime Minister. Oh how we laughed. Noel Pearson even claimed Jacinta had been “caught in a tragic redneck celebrity vortex”, but everyone just thought he was talking about Rowan Dean.
Once the Voice frisson had dissipated, in usual Coalition style, our no-longer-useful Jacinta got shoved out the back faster than you could say “self-owning spin doctors”; locked up in the Senate Leftover’s Cupboard with Hollie Hughes and Sarah Henderson. Sarah is sadly still in there waiting hopefully for her next parliamentary crying performance. Rumour is, Mistress Michaelia keeps the keys.
Meanwhile, when she wasn’t socialising with Bruce Lehrmann in the Sydney mansions of multi-millionaires, Sussan Ley wandered aimlessly around Sydney with Boris Johnson, presumably asking him for tips on hot government covid cover-ups and hairstyling techniques.
Although Sussan hid in the same underground bunker with Littleproud during the Voice last year, she’s more than made up for it now by loudly demanding Albo give back the Stage 3 tax cuts to those poor working wealthies struggling on $200K a year. In fact, so aggrieved was our Sussan by Albo’s changes to the Stage 3 tax cuts that she voted in favour of them in parliament this week.
Sussan also got a bit frothy last year about the time the Attorney General educated a Sky news woman on how the law works, during his press conference. Sussan didn’t like this because according to Sussan, highly qualified senior barristers should never explain the law to journalists of the women kind. Yes ladies, 2023 was the year Sussan apparently discovered feminism. No, not the type of feminism that would have interfered with her supporting a federal Cabinet filled with an alleged rapist and a man who told women protesters they were lucky not to be met with bullets. The other kind of feminism – the one where white ladies march about the federal parliament courtyard in search of a convenient victim narrative. Perhaps they should have just taken crying lessons from Sarah Henderson.
But it was the Robodebt inquiry that really showed us all in 2023 what lily-livered cowards the federal Coalition are. Lawyers who ignored the law, ministerial advisers who failed to advise, public servants who hated the public and an Australian government at war with Australians. The stories were horrific – debts that didn’t exist, families destroyed and people taking their own lives. The Coalition politicians involved, all convenient amnesiacs and professional buck-passers, scrambled to get off the crashing gravy train. As things stand in early 2024, almost 12 months after the inquiry has finished, not a single person has been held to legal account.
The only comfort we can take from the Robodebt inquiry is that Scotty-the-last-mayor-of-Australia has finally resigned. When he wasn’t travelling the world in search of well-paying board appointments, or talking to God through his eagle picture, he continued to sit in parliament during 2023, lurking on his own among parliament’s lonely middle rows like an unwanted step-child with freshly soiled pants.
Scott Morrison’s gurning presence in the parliamentary seats of the Liberal party throughout 2023 served as a continual reminder not only of the Robodebt scandal, but Barnaby Joyce’s missing $650K drought texts, Stuart Robert playing pass-the-secret-contract with disappearing friends, a Prime Minister appointing himself to five different ministries, and the idea that Australian government is a help-yourself buffet of money for mates and gross incompetency. It’s a wonder Albo hasn’t called for a permanent shit-stain to be painted onto Scotty’s parliamentary seat in Scotty’s honour.
Sometimes it seemed like Thug-Boy Dutton spent most of 2023 in politics trying to see how many ridiculous headlines he could hog for his own personal wallpaper collection. We had barbaric wars erupt between Israel and Hamas, Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, and massive unrest in many countries throughout South America and Africa. It was the hottest year on planet earth since meteorological measurements began. Glaciers melted and the earth faced extinction – and there was Dutton’s Liberal party, focusing its energy on the air-miles of the Prime Minister’s dog.
But Dutton has never met a headline he didn’t like, regardless of the hypocrisy. While he was busy questioning whether Albo’s overseas trips to meet key trade and political allies were necessary, Peter Dutton flew across Australia on Gina Rinehart’s personal jet to a barbecue, which probably goes to prove the old life lesson – never trust a man who’s the human incarnation of a Gold Coast used car yard.
Yes, you can argue Labor remains too rigid, traumatised by their past ordeals and the limp, wet threat of the Murdochracy. But for every shuffle they make dragging Australia into some form of responsible government, however much they stink at climate change management, or understanding genocide in Gaza, they’ll never extinguish the wretched stench of the years Australians spent under the hands of the Enemies Of Woke, the federal Coalition, whose only achievement after over 9 years in power has been an uptick in national corruption commission referrals and Canberra cocaine sales. Roll on 2024.