Jesus-on-a-stick, I haven’t partied that hard since tricky Dicky Nixon dropped dead. Started out on election night last November at a western suburbs backyard barbeque with a laptop and a vodka spritzer and ended up in the back of an abandoned ute full of dessicated abalone and a warm slab of beer on the Sapphire Coast of New South Wales.
Hey, but what was not to celebrate, big-time!
The 33-year parliamentary career of John Winston Howard had ended in humiliating defeat for him and for his crass, cruel and deceitful government.
After 11 and a half years – years clearly predicted by Bob Ellis back in 2001 as a return to “the Cold War years, the McCarthyist years, the years of scapegoat and smear and blackguarding and traitorising and ideological name-calling and thrashing about” – the Horror Government had come crashing flat onto its face.
And what a relief to see the malicious old bugger buckle at the knees and go down, George W. Bush’s “man-of-steel” who was dumped by his own party as leader in 1989 as unelectable but who since 1996 won four consecutive elections for the Liberal-National Coalition by mimicking Bush’s “terrorism forever” stage show and hijacking the racist mantra of the asinine Pauline Hanson. And who, in his very first term, presided over the resignations of fourteen disgraced federal government ministers and parliamentary secretaries after scandals involving money, and three more who didn't resign because Howard protected them.
Yes, Johnny, we knew you all too well, even before the 9/11 window of golden opportunity for power-hungry corporate crooks and despots around the world.
What a hero to the Liarberal cause! Hanging on until the entire party crumbled around him, the second sitting Australian prime minister to have lost his seat (after Stanley Bruce was defeated in 1929).
Oh, and Maxine, Maxine, Maxine!
Julia Gillard may be Australia’s first female deputy Prime Minister but newly elected Labor MP Maxine McKew is the woman who slew the monster in its lair! The former ABC journalist and now parliamentary secretary to the PM Rudd and cabinet finally claimed Bennelong as a Labor seat - the first time it has been out of Liarberal hands since it was established in 1949.
Just think about it though. Think of the puffed-up hags like Bronwyn Bishop, Helen Coonan, Fran Bailey and Danna Vale, and dopey, ineffectual hacks like Jackie Kelly and De-Anne Kelly of the Howard government, and compare the ALP’s women of intelligence and substance like Gillard, McKew, Wong, Plibersek and Roxon, as well as several talented backbenchers.
But Maxine! You bloody bewdy!
But she campaigned with genuine gusto, despite receiving death threats in circumstances similar to those experienced by former intelligence analyst Andrew Wilkie, who was the Greens candidate for theHoward’s seat in 2004.
Wilkie said the threatening letters stopped after the election, in which he secured a small swing against Howard, but abusive phone calls continued for many months until he changed his telephone number (XN readers will recall that Wilkie sensationally quit the national intelligence agency in 2003 over concerns about the Howard government’s political misuse of intelligence in the lead-up to the illegal invasion of Iraq).
Maxine copped such threats too and last year a neighbour alerted police after seeing suspicious men farnarkling with Maxine’s car in Maxine’s driveway. During the 2004 campaign Wilkie had also reported gangs of young men harassing him on a number of occasions. Hmmm!
Young Libs and too much Pimms, anybody? Not to Johnny’s knowledge, I’m sure!
Yes, Maxine has made history as the person who knocked off the malignant dwarf in his own electorate, and Howard has made history as the relentless old fool who rode to political success on the back of a mining boom, a firesale of public assets and an orchestrated fear campaign, only to crash and burn in a crushing excess of personal hubris.
And despite his earlier silly election promises to the contrary, interest rates rose six times in Howard’s final term, costing him the support of the so-called “conservative working class” who copped a resounding smack upside the head by higher mortgage payments.
Increasingly desperate as his political doomsday approached, Howard made wild spending promises of $9.4 billion while maniacally – and illogically – continuing to proclaim his “fiscally responsible” furphy. Meanwhile, Rudd calmly pledged just $2.3 billion of lollies and fairy floss at his campaign launch and waited for the tide to come in.
Howard’s humungous pork barrel – like his unprecedented levels of federal political advertising at taxpayer expense – failed to make a dent in poll after poll.
The blatant attempt to turn Queensland resident Indian doctor Mohamed Haneef into a terrorist scarecrow backfired in no uncertain terms, showering the Howard mob, the Federal Police and our spy agencies in shit and shame [http://www.xenoxnews.com/index.php?name=News&file=article&sid=2074].
As the guillotine came down on election night, Howard was clearly on the verge of tears as he said: "I accept responsibility for this defeat."
Christ, I hadn’t laughed so much in yonks!
Then Howard endorsed the sulking former Treasurer Peter (boo hoo, I wost my wowwy pop) Costello as Opposition Leader, a kiss of death if ever there was one.
Howard, unrepentant despite “accepting responsibility”, waffled on about the “economic prosperity” Australia had enjoyed under the LibNats and said "We bequeath to him [Rudd] a nation that is stronger and prouder…'' neglecting to mention that he had received his own economic bequest from the previous Labor governments of Bob Hawke and Paul Keating.
"I've led a government that has taken this country from deep debt to strong prosperity,'' the outgoing Lying Rodent proclaimed, perhaps rejuvenated momentarily by Janette’s forefinger deeply imbedded in his anus.
This statement alone reaffirmed what the entire nation had by now realised, that Howard remained clueless or careless or both of the gulf that separates him and his lofty Tory ilk from the mug punters throwing themselves from one bill to another while the recent so-called “boom” – essentially the outcome of China’s growing demand for natural resources - went skipping along hand-in-hand with rapidly escalating household debt and growing social inequity and iniquity.
Like a fading Il Duce marooned on a balcony above the idiot masses, Howard sputtered: "I've led a government that has never shirked the difficult decisions”… like incarcerating traumatised asylum seekers in isolated, razor-wired gulags for years – men, women, children, babes-in-arms, Howard and his grotesques couldn’t give a shit. Hell, they were happy to let them drown at sea and lie shamelessly about children being deliberately thrown overboard (And on that issue, this links shows the photographs Howard and his cronies withheld with explicit instructions to 'not humanise the asylum seekers': http://www.safecom.org.au/kids-overboard.htm)
The repugnant skulduggery of the Howard years is a bottomless cesspit, the skeletons are many and hopefully will rattle louder and with increasing intensity as the iron curtain of secrecy surrounding the past 11 and half years is slowly dismantled.
Which no doubt explains the hundreds of wheelie bins that were lined up and down beneath the Parliament’s ministerial corridor to do away with a shitload of shredded files.
Yes, folks, the LibNats are scurrying about like cockroaches on a kitchen floor when you change the linoleum… and what joy it has been to watch the pompous, self-important clods at each others throats in typical Tory style. It’s like a Three Stooges skit, with scores of Stooges outdoing each other with hammers blows to the head, bricks, bats, bites and a whole lot of furious eye gouging.
Yeah, I’m still laughing, especially whenever I see Brendan Nelson’s red, sweaty mug on the telly. Is he really Opposition Leader? Well, why not, even Downer got to briefly sit in the grown-up’s chair.
What a pack of pompous gits. No sooner had the 2007 election loss been confirmed than the lot of them turned their backs on their own electorates and went out to lunch and to golf, proving what these gutless wonders really think of their muddle-headed constituents: Oh no, now that I h’am not an foreign minister, I shan’t bother turning up for work, let ‘em h’eat stale truffles for all h’i care!
The cost of subsequent by-elections should be paid out of the own deep, rancid pockets of the likes of Downer and co. Or maybe the Exclusive Brethren could pitch in another million or two for the tattered Tory cause? Better still: strip them of their obscene taxpayer funded benefits!
It’s still hard to believe that, after almost a dozen grotesque years, the Howard government really has been overthrown.
And not only was the government dumped, but the Lying Rodent himself when his constituency voted him out of office!
Adding to the overdue coup, his winning opponent is a former ABC TV news presenter… and a woman!
Maxine, like the joy of your election victory (LOVE that exuberant snapshot seated next to glum Johnny Jingo) my tattoo shall never fade.
And how rapidly the new PM Kevin Rudd – a former diplomat with fluency in Mandarin and apparently extensive knowledge of our best customer China – moved to dispel the odium, cruelty, extremism, meanness and trickery that typify John Howard’s legacy.
So why aren’t I ecstatic?
Sure, I celebrated the downfall of the Lying Rodent, but the Labor Party and Rudd and are clearly to the right of centre, contrary to those born-to-rule buffoons in the equally misnamed “Liberal” Party who tried portraying the Labor leader as some sort of new Red peril. Far, far from it, children!
We’ve all seen the trend. As the Libs moved increasingly to the extremist right under Howard, Labor followed at a considered distance and, in more recent times under Beazely simply mirrored Howard’s hard-line on, for example, the phoney “war-on-terrorism”, among other things.
What’s worse, the predicted electoral backlash against Howard was no such thing, reflecting the fundamental conservatism of Australians in general.
One report earlier this year claimed Labor won 83 of the 150 seats in the House of Reps, the Lib/Nat Coalition 65 and independents two. Fair enough, but nine of Labor's 83 seats were won by margins of less than 1.5%.
The Democrats got nothing and have ceased to exist in Parliament. only the Greens remain as a voice of reason but without any real means to affecting serious change in the way government behaves.
In fact, Howard’s defeat may stem from just two issues in his broadly anti-democratic agenda: restrictive workplace laws and rising home loan interest rates.
Not the cruel mistreatment, imprisonment and demonization of refugees and asylum seekers; not the constant targeting of scapegoats in the typically Howardian tactic of blaming the victims of his discriminatory policies; not the fear-mongering, racism and phoney flag-waving; not the corruption, cronyism and humbuggery, and not the lies and deceptions surrounding Australia’s involvement in Amerikkkan warcrimes in Afghanistan and in he catastrophic invasion and occupation of oil-rich Iraq by the corrupt Bush regime.
For 11 years most Australians kept believing or at least excusing the endlessly repeated lies of the malignant dwarf, voting the bastards back in… until John Howard’s “WorkChoices” legislation began to bite and interest rates began to rise.
One analyst has suggested that in every federal election a third of all Australians vote Liberal, a third vote Labor and the remaining third swing to and fro… like a hanged corpse… thereby explaining the past dozen dark, disgraceful years.
Workaholic Rudd has moved quickly to dispel the gloom and exposed the lies – especially about the precious economy and the Howard gang’s purported economic expertise - but perhaps the damage is too deep for any major changes.
The ongoing tragedy is that the voting public have so little to choose from with political leadership in Australia almost as narrow as in Duhmerica with its Republicrat duopoly on high office, high finance and hijinks.
Nobody can doubt that the current Labor State governments are as seedy and corrupt but where is the alternative? At least Labor has some sort of social platform whereas the Libs remain staunchly unto their own nasty Tory agenda. No, folks, there’s a great deal more to be done before we have scraped all the bullshit from our boots.
What’s more, without criminal proceedings into the Bush regime’s warcrimes that were aided and abetted by the Howard gang, this dark, damning chapter in Australia’s history will remain open.
And by the way, I didn’t vote FOR anybody in the November federal poll: I voted AGAINST the mendacious midget and his horde of gutless suckholes.
And seeing those rabid ratbags crumble, cobber, was mightily worth celebrating!
I don’t have high expectations of Kevin Rudd PM. After all, his finest attribute is that fact that he is NOT the jogging jackass from Kirribilli. But if Rudd is exposed as just a fuzzy version of Howard I will have the immense pleasure of celebrating HIS ouster in 3 years time.
But one thing’s for sure, Lazarus with a triple by-pass is finally dead and buried.
This was Max Gross, back in Xenox News, back in hock and biting the bullet!