Well the world is well shod of such lazy, freeloading bums and so is Chairman Rupert. But will the advertisers feel the same way?
Who knows, and who cares. Here at the pond it only increases our desire to see The Australian go boldly where no antipodean rag has yet gone, and put up a paywall.
Sure it will diminish the number of eccentrics on view by at least ninety per cent, but frankly just to have them caged in zoo where you need to pay an entrance fee to look at the monkeys will make visiting The Oz a special treat. For mug punters ...
Meanwhile, we anxiously searched the pages of the rag for signs and portents as to ways to deal with the red devil, and sure enough there was that Club Sensible man, Christopher Pearson, trying out a few themes for future Liberal party advertising.
Most of Cabinet found governing a puzzle is spent establishing that the Rudd government was dysfunctional, while celebrating the wonders of the Howard government's procedures, but then comes the crucial sting in the tail, worthy of any desert scorpion.
Gillard, you see, was a member of the gang of four, and quite possibly was the Jian Qing of the kitchen cabinet.
A different order of complicity attaches to Rudd's deputy and nemesis, Gillard. As a member of the camarilla, she was party to the marginalisation of most of her cabinet colleagues and benefited by the corresponding enhancement of her own power.
Oops, I see that with camarilla we're in the territory of German and Romanian courts. Well I suppose that's one step up from cabals.
Oh heck, why waste any precious drop of abuse. It seems this gang of four, camarilla members, cabalists in a cabal ministry, would have acted like the Cliveden set if they hadn't been elitist members of a kitchen cabinet, éminence grises the lot of them, the real power behind the throne, in a kind of insei or cloistered rule system of government, and perhaps sharing the strange, sinister, secular atheist tendencies of Sir Walter Raleigh's clique gang The School of Night.
Phew, I think that about covers it, though I do regret not being able to include makhzen, the Moroccan Arabic word for the governing elite in Morocco, and I seem to have overlooked any reference to inner city cultural elites and Ultimo ratbags. But back to Pearson:
Thus, although she presided over levels of waste and mismanagement in the Building the Education Revolution scheme that would have cut short any lesser mortal's career, she has paid no price.
She supported the decisions that eventually made Rudd Labor unelectable, but expects to escape most of the blame and markets herself as a new broom to sweep up her predecessor's messes.
Ah indeed, and what if the broom gives the appearance of having swept up some of the mess? Leaving Tony Abbott to urge that we drop any number of billions from a mining tax simply because he doesn't believe in taxes, and doesn't believe in government acting in a socialist way, except when springing for $1.5 billion for mental health, which handily might have been covered by a mining tax, compromised but still able to bring in some lolly ...
Never mind, because you see, everything former Chairman Rudd did must now be transferred holus bolus to chairwoman Gillard:
On the day of her accession to the leadership, Gillard spoke of a good government that had lost its way.
While she may have entertained concerns about its dysfunctionality, they weren't serious enough to prompt her to intervene until the last moment, when caucus confronted leaked party polling and the prospect of imminent defeat.
You see, Titanic iceberg Rudd Gillard and not a thing done, until the last moment.
It's hard being a club sensible cheerleader, what with the need to wear tutus all the time, and do the splits and whistle and jeer the villains, but somehow Pearson manages it week after week.
The rest of the usual suspects at The Oz - the shivs and shills and spruikers - do their best to keep up Liberal hopes, and if you're a Percy Grainger type masochist no doubt you can find time to read Michael Stutchbury, or a bemused befuddled Denis Shanahan, but surely the best news for the Australian Labor Party comes from that prime doofus and tormentor of Radio National listeners, Phillip Adams, in Why I quit the Labor Party.
Yes, he's gone, left, departed the socialist banner. You there, in the back row, stop cheering and stamping your feet. This is a wake, not a party:
Rudd and I talked regularly. The last time we spoke he was urging me to resign from The Australian to protest its editorial line, advice I declined to accept. And we argued about his climate change strategy. I by no means agreed with other policies and tactics. But nothing would have persuaded me to support a move against the leader who’d defeated Howard, made that superb “sorry” speech and handled the GFC with such skill. The right to dismiss a PM belongs to the electorate at an election, not to a drunken governor-general or factional bullies drunk with power. Rudd goes, so I go too. Seems the lethal Latham was right.
Yep, he'd prefer to keep working for Chairman Rupert at The Oz, and he agrees with Mark Latham that there's no room for him in the party, and now he's off in high dungeon, with a toss of the skirts and a sweep of the hair. Gee Phil, don't slam the door on your way out.
But then Adams, it turns out, as well as being a willing, ongoing quisling lackey of Chairman Rupert's, is also a member of Club Sensible:
Like Keneally in NSW, Gillard takes power courtesy of some very unpleasant people. Barbie Doll or Boadicea? I’m told that the new NSW premier is another decent human being. I don’t know Julia Gillard, but accept that she was coerced (or seduced) into her challenge. Yet I was uneasy with her cleverly calibrated victory speech. First of all, some victory. Second, she justified the coup by talking of a government losing its way. But it was HER way! As Deputy PM she had more than a casting vote in the Gang of Four. And at least one of the most calamitous decisions was hers. Rudd resisted, she insisted.
More than a casting vote. You see, it's all Gillard's fault that Chairman Rudd drove Labor's primary vote to record lows. She was in control, and he was a mere puppet, helpless when confronted by her guiles and wiles! The cunning little vixen, as Janacek might say.
Well we were startled by the news that Adams is increasingly drawn to the Catholic church - said not in apparent jest but in apparent earnestness - but ain't it grand to see him becoming a member of Club Sensible, peddling the same line, and weeping into his beer at factional thugs, whims, faceless men and cowardly conspiracies.
You see, it turns out that Chairman Rudd was Adams' idea:
... ambition was sadly lacking in Beazley, the Al Gore of Australian politics, and that as much as anything doomed his prospects. So this column floated the idea of Rudd as Labor leader. I wrote a lot about him but it took three leadership challenges until, through sheer persistence, he got up. And because of his conservatism he beat Howard, as I always thought he would.
And now they've done him down, and yet everything was going spiffingly well. Of course he has a few flaws, but the thugs did him down, working in darkness, in the full glare of the Australian media.
Can it be long before Adams moves from his current membership in Club Sensible to the even more elevated stratospheric airy views available to only the elite in Club Gherkin?
Here at the pond of course we've never belonged to any political party, on the Groucho Marx principle long established in these pages, so we can't resign from anything with a flourish, or even wonder why the club won't let us in the door.
But the news that a dinosaur has left the swamp because he liked the conservative Christian cut of the jib on Chairman Rudd is so richly comical that we've suddenly come to the conclusion that Phillip Adams is actually funnier than Christopher Pearson.
Roll on that paywall, and the sooner the better.
About the only reading we'll miss is Jack the Insider, as once again, in Of necromancy and elections, he shows some hearty cynicism and some good humour. While he pauses to praise Abbott's attention to mental health, and tips a hat to a late August election, Jack is always fun to read as he scribbles about Abbott's "action contract", which disappeared under the weight of the Labor party's ructions, insurrection, coup and mining tax set to.
Perhaps it's just as well:
... the release of the 12-point “contract” was revealing. Calling the document a contract is a piece of marketing silliness. I mean, a contract with the Australian people can only be binding if each and every one of us signs it. But the term ‘contract’ was used to overcome the doubt created when Abbott appeared on The 7.30 Report in May, telling Kerry O’Brien and a bemused television audience (not to mention Abbott’s furious political colleagues) that not all his statements were to be believed and that only his scripted remarks could be taken as “gospel truth”.
So let’s not call it a plan, let’s call it a contract, right?
So let’s not call it a plan, let’s call it a contract, right?
Well at least we now know where we stand, with gang of four Jian Qing up against action man Abbott in a showdown, perhaps in late August, before the bovver boys get to play the football grand finals. And presumably Phillip Adams will be rooting for the charming conservative Catholic values of the action man, along with his Club Sensible companion Christopher Pearson.
If you feel like joining in, here's some photos for you to roll out. And remember, in the new world of Chairman Rupert, you'll get the commentators and the commentary you pay for: