For nothing will save the Governor-General…

Gough Whitlam 11, November. 1975.Forty Years ago to this date the then Prime Minister of Australia, Gough Whitlam, stood on the steps of the old – wedding cake – Parliament House (Australia’s second parliament house. Yes, Australia’s first federal parliament was in Melbourne in the Old Exhibition Building) and famously said these words on the 11/11/1975.

“Well, they may say God save the Queen. Because, nothing will save the Governor-General!”

The shadow of that day has stayed in the background of this country ever since. The justification given for the ‘Dismissal’ was that the Whitlam Government was totally out-of-control with the economy in complete ruins. Well if we are to apply the current economic policies and formulas for judging the economic credibility of government, then having constant budget surpluses then the Whitlam Government would have passed the test with flying colours. It actually ran budget surpluses for its whole period of government. However, by Mid-1975 Western Economies were plunged into a world recession and ‘Stagflation’ a combination of inflation and a recession.

The Whitlam Government was also determined to pursue its ambitious policy of ‘buying up the farm’, by purchasing all of Australia’s entire resources, much of it untapped at the time. The Whitlam Government hoped to raise the funds from the global markets, borrowing petro-dollars.  Minister for Resources, Rex O’Connor, placed his trust in a shady character called Tirath Khemlani, who reassured O’Connor he could get the loans, but Khemlani clearly could not. O’Connor was later dismissed by Whitlam for misleading him on the ‘Loans Affair’.

It was around this time that the Fraser Liberal/Country Party Opposition decided to pursue the policy of ‘Blocking Supply’ in the Senate to force an early election.

The Governor-General, Sir John Kerr, decided to over-come the ‘Supply’ crisis was to dismiss the Whitlam Government, install the then Opposition leader Malcolm Fraser as Prime Minister into a care-taker government and call an early election for December 1975.

Whitlam went to see Kerr on the morning of the 11th November to call for a half-Senate election as a way to overcome the Constitutional Crisis.

However, Kerr the snake and drunk of a man did not accept Whitlam’s proposal to hold half-senate elections and instead handed Whitlam his dismissal notice of his government.

What occurred on that Remembrance Day in 1975 was nothing short of a ‘Constitutional Coup’ by a man who deceived not only his Prime Minister, but the Australian people!

Kerr was a drunkard as was so clearly demonstrated at the 1977 Melbourne Cup when Kerr was asked to present the Cup to the winning Trainer, Bart Cummings and Jockey, John Duggan; Here is the footage to remind you all of how bad he was, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nqesjLRXmr0

This footage is from a Channel 7 Report on the Cup presentation. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-cjJ0ok5T1Y

Kerr was pissed to the eyeballs as he had been given a few ‘chargers’ by the former Victorian Premier, Sir Henry Bolte, also well known for being a bloody drunk. Interesting how all these former conservative leaders loved hitting the sauce bottle.

In fact Whitlam’s staff recount a night at Kirribilli House when they heard noise outside late at night or early in the morning, when somebody knocked on the window. It was the Governor-General Sir John Kerr, in search of Scotch Whiskey after he had run out of the amber-fluid in the GG’s official residence Admiralty House. It was claimed Kerr knocked on the window holding an empty crystal decanter, requesting any scotch they might have in the house. The staff did a quick search, found some and watched as Kerr staggered away into the night to continue on his drinking binge. So in other words the man that decided this country’s fate was a drunkard, a womaniser, a liar and somebody who came close to starting a damn civil-war all because of his damn ego!

What is worse in on the 40th Anniversary of the dismissal of the Whitlam Government, the British Monarchy, in whose name the dismal was carried out in, have appeared on our door step to be treated and feted as the born-to-rule royalty and monarchy that they’ve become used to. You’d think they’d be a bit more sensitive to our country’s history, but it appears they too have learnt very little from that tremulous events in 1975.

The Cannonball Run Mark II NT style

Once again the Northern Territory (NT) is promoting its unrestricted open speed limits, just as it did in the early 1990’s as a way of attracting tourist, especially motoring enthusiasts and rev-heads who could be let loose on the Stuart Highway. In 1993 the then Country-Liberal Party (CLP) was in a bit of a pickle and looked as it might lose the next NT election scheduled for later in 1994. So to help with its election it was suggested it support the idea of a race called the ‘Cannonball Run’, which the CLP embraced whole-heartily allocating money and resources to the event.

The race was promoted as the NT version of the unofficial American version in which drivers would race from Darwin to Alice Springs then back to Darwin in the quickest time. In the American version drivers participated in the event from the Atlantic East Coast, New York City, to the Pacific West Coast, Los Angeles. The race was intended as a protest against strict traffic speed laws that were about to come into effect due to the 1970’s Oil Shock. Hollywood got into the act producing The Cannonball Run, starring Burt Reynolds and Dom Deluise. Remember them?

The Northern Territory Government of, Mr Adam Giles Country-Liberal Party (CLP) is in a spot of trouble at the moment and on the nose with NT voters, just like his CLP colleagues were in 1994. This is due in part to a bloody leadership coup led by Mr Giles, against the then Chief Minister, Mr Terry Mills, in what could only be deemed the biggest piece of political bastardy ever see in this country. The coup against Mr Mills occurred whilst he was overseas on a trade mission to Indonesia and despite him winning a decisive victory over the ALP seven months earlier.

Then 12 months later three Indigenous CLP parliamentary members resigned and moved to the cross-benches becoming Independents. The CLP’s numbers went from 16 seats to 12 seats with the ALP holding 8 seats. The Speaker of the NT Legislative Assembly resigned from the CLP in July increasing the number of independents to five.

So Chief Minister Giles is and has been a spot of bother since the coup with the party’s polling figures plummeting soon after the coup and have not recovered. The most recent ReachTEL telephone polling, conducted in September, shows the CLP trailing Labor 28 per cent to 37 per cent on first preferences. After distribution of the two-party vote predicts a 16 percent swing against the CLP, putting its vote at 39 per cent to the ALP’s 61 per cent. Which could reduce the CLP to a rump of perhaps 3 to 4 seats in the NT Legislative Assembly, or nothing at all.

So the CLP is desperate to lift its polling figures from the so-called ‘death-zone’, which on current trends would see a first term government losing power, just like the LNP Government of Campbell Newman in Queensland. So the Giles Government is clutching at any novice idea to help lift its dismal, including promoting the open speed limit on the Stuart Highway to car manufacturers, enthusiasts and just pure rev-heads who want to test the speed and endurance of their cars.

The Stuart Highway has an unrestricted speed limit between Alice Springs and Barrow Creek, with drivers able to travel well over 200 kilometres per hour or more. The Northern Territory used to have restricted speed limits of 130 KPH, brought in by the former ALP government. However, one of the first things the CLP did was remove the limits and returned the highway to unrestricted, but only within certain areas.

The Stuart Highway is not a dual carriage-way such as the Hume Highway, but a single shared highway, with bush scrub on either side. This makes it perfect territory for cattle, and feral animals and Australian natives to suddenly appear from the bush in front of a car travelling at extremely high speed. Forget about cleaning the mess from the grill; it will be from the back window on the inside, if you’re lucky. Your $200,000 plus Ferrari would suddenly be transformed into a convertible, but without a front-end!

In the 1980’s I was traveling in a bus from Darwin one night, when an unwise cow wondered out onto the road in front of us. Instead of slowing down the driver accelerated and went straight through the cow. All we felt was a slight bump as the cow ended up on the Bullbar and everywhere else. The driver didn’t have much choice, it was either the passengers, or the cow.

So on the 22nd May 1994, the then Chief Minister of the NT, Marshall Perron waved the chequered flag and 118 drivers took off in the first ever legal Cannonball Race. The NT Police were called upon to clear the Stuart Highway of traffic whilst the race was on.

The race was going swimmingly until it got to Alice Springs, that’s when things went off script. On the 24th of May, during one of the timed sections a $500,000 Ferrari F40 driven by its owner, a millionaire Japanese dentist and his co-driver. He hit some gravel, spun out of control and slammed into two race officials and their cars. Oops, that wasn’t in the script! The same driver had earlier been clocked at 141 miles per hour, not kilometres!

Although the organisers said the race would continue, speed limits were reduced to 180 KPH with a no overtaking rule imposed on the racing participants. The NT Coroner later found that excessive speed was responsible for the men’s deaths. The race was never run again and the CLP went on to win the next election. The question is, will Adam Giles win the next Territory election? Who knows? But despite the tragic car accident in the 1994 Cannonball Race, the CLP under Marshall Perron went on to win the election held later that year in 1994. So who knows it might just work for the current Chief Minister, Mr Giles, but I somehow doubt it!

Direct Action and PM Turnbull and having my guts ripped open

Dear Comrades, I want to give you a brief reminder of Prime Minister Turnbull’s previous comments on climate change and the Liberal Party’s ‘Direct-Action’ policy to address climate change. He had previously said Direct Action was:

“a recipe for fiscal recklessness on a grand scale….In short, having the government pay for emissions abatement, as opposed to the polluting industries themselves, is a slippery slope which can only result in higher taxes and more costly and less effective abatement of emissions.”

He summed it up nicely in 2010:

“As Tony observed on one occasion “climate change is crap” or if you consider his mentor, Senator Minchin, the world is not warming, it’s cooling and the climate change issue is part of a vast left wing conspiracy to deindustrialise the world.

“Now politics is about conviction and a commitment to carry out those convictions. The Liberal Party is currently led by people whose conviction on climate change is that it is “crap” and you don’t need to do anything about it. Any policy that is announced will simply be a con, an environmental figleaf to cover a determination to do nothing.”

That’s enough from me because once again I’m in terrible pain. Tonight it feels like somebody is ripping my guts apart with a hot knife. It also feels like some mad Japanese Guard at Changi has shoved a glass-rod up the eye of my penis then shattered it with the butt of his rifle into my groin trying to get me to admit to something during a torture session. Yes I’m more or less pissing razor-blades but without the puss! It’s all referred nerve pain, yet they –surgeons- can’t tell me why and refuse to fix the problem. I’m at my wits end and am prepared to do whatever to fix it. I can’t continue taking opiates for the rest of my life, I’m already a “legal-Junkie” so to speak. More later. So if my writing tonight offends anybody, but this is my daily existence, so suck it up!

Euan

“The Lady’s not for Turning”.

In October, 1980 the ‘Iron lady’ of British politics Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher announced at the Conservative Party Conference that “The lady’s not for turning”, which was greeted with ruptures of applause and cheers from MP’s and supporters. It became something of a Thatcherite motto. At the time Thatcher was under pressure to do a U-turn in regards to her economic policies. Thatcher was to stare-down her critics within and outside the Conservative Party.

Perhaps Bronwyn Bishop was conjuring up the spirit of the former ‘Iron Lady’ Thatcher and whom Bishop worships and attempts to emulates her in appearance and actions, and revels in being compared to Thatcher. When earlier this week she told the media that she would not be resigning from the Speaker’s Chair, she was conjuring up the spirit of Thatcher and attempted to stare down her critics in the same way the late Thatcher did. But, of course it’s not working. From what I know about Thatcher she never chartered a $5000 helicopter.

Meanwhile ‘Choppergate’ drags on and on with no apparent end in sight for the scandal to end. Bronwyn Bishop has got it into her head that we are her servants and she’ll do what she wants when she wants no matter the costs. Well I have a message for Bishop and her likes, she is our servant and we the people can decide how long she’ll be our servant for!

Now, I know it’s highly unlikely that the good burgess of Mackellar in the North Shore suburb of Sydney are going to suddenly rise-up with their pitch-folks and pikes and demand Bronwnnies head on a pike. But the good people of Mackellar on the North Shore, also don’t take too kindly to politicians wasting their taxes in such an extravagant manner. So who knows they just might take up with their pitch-folks and pikes yet! But, the rest of us common folk who live in this vast continent can write, phone and email our local federal members to register our disgust in her behaviour.

We should demand a clean up the system of politicians perks from a self-regulated system – which never works – to having an independently administered statutory body that oversees politician’s privileges. This will hopefully ensure the ‘chopper-gate’ fiasco is not repeated, but with politicians such as Bronwyn Bishop who knows.

The simple fact is the only reason this situation has come about is due to the poor leadership of a certain Prime Minister, Abbott. She was his ‘Captain Pick’ for the Speakers position as – a factional – pay back for her years of support, and to cause chaos to the Labor Party.

Although she’s razor sharp on parliamentary standing orders and history of the Westminster system, she is terrible at applying the same rules to herself and Liberal National Party side of politics. She has been accused of being the most partisan Speaker in the history of the House of Representatives and the numbers alone support that claim. She has named and thrown out well over 400 members of parliament, with 393 being from Labor.

Other politicians from either sides have been Speakers, even the disgraced Peter Slipper, with all his pomp and ceremony whilst in the position was considered a very good Speaker. My local Federal Member of Chisholm, Anna Burke, did a great job in a very rough parliament and so did Harry Jenkins. Bishop may have a great knowledge on parliamentary procedures, but she is biased in the way she applies those procedures.

The longer Abbott supports Bishop then the longer it will damage not only his government but his blind support for her also calls into question his leadership as well. A large number of the frontbench refuse to support her both publicly and privately, with the Treasurer Joe Hockey refusing to publicly support her. Either Bishop goes, or Abbott goes, it will have to be one or the other.