#Auspol – Going, Going, Gonski

Never forget this quote:

It is always better to ask forgiveness than to seek permission

That was our new Prime Minister, Tony Abbott, after he announced his paid parental leave scheme, a scheme that even most of his own coalition didn’t like.

Here’s a few other quotes for you, this first one from the Liberal Party newsletter, otherwise known at The Australian:

Just over a week before the September election, Mr Pyne promised: “You can vote Liberal or Labor and you’ll get exactly the same amount of funding for your school.”

Pyne2And today, from the same article:

Mr Pyne, who claimed to be on a “unity ticket” with Labor on school funding before the election, today said the Gonski model was a “shambles” and “unimplementable”.

“The change of government means that the new government will implement its policies in the future,” he said.

But wait a minute….. the new government’s policy was the same as the old government’s policy, right?

Again, Tony Abbott, before the election:

“There is no difference between Kevin Rudd and myself when it comes to school funding,” the Opposition Leader said at an independent school in Melbourne.

“We will honour the agreements that Labor has entered into. We will match the offers that Labor has made. We will make sure that no school is worse off.

Basically, if you’ve got kids that’ll be school-aged in the next 4 years, don’t count on your school having the boosted resources that you thought it might have. Your school would have had those resources under the Gonski plan for school funding and the Libs even backflipped their policy from early this year and promised that they would honour the Gonski funding model for the next four years.

Today, they backflipped on their backflip.

Australia, you’ve been lied to in the most blatant fashion since Julia Gillard’s Carbon Tax quote. The big difference is that at least the Carbon Tax had honourable intentions and an unexpected partner putting on the clamps.

This is just flat-out penny pinching lies that will see funds diverted to more Lib-friendly areas from 2015 onwards.

Pyne3If the Libs’ promise to match Labor on Gonski was the tipping point for your vote, then I have to ask: how are you feeling now?

You’ve been sold a dud. A complete, utter pup. I think we can unequivocally say that this is not the government that people voted for back on September 9. Yes, it’s a Lib/Nat coalition and yes, Labor didn’t deserve to govern given the state they were in. But few people expected this, typified by today’s brazen backflip on school funding reform, an area where the Libs went out of their way to announce their unanimity with Labor’s policy.

You’ve elected a government that’s going to take no meaningful action on climate change, one that pays lip service to the science but can’t even send an elected representative to a conference on the issue.

You’ve elected a government that’s going to take away the safety net $500 Superannuation co-contribution for low income earners.

You’ve elected a government that claimed a budget crisis for 12+ months prior to the election and then gifted an unwanted $8billion to the Reserve Bank, money it neither asked for or needed.

You’ve elected a government that cried foul over debt and deficit for years and then immediately asked for a 66% rise in the nation’s debt ceiling.

You’ve elected a government that doesn’t tell you anything about what it’s doing, whether it be the way it’s treating aspiring immigrants from war-torn countries or our nation’s changed attitude and vote towards Israeli settlements in the occupied territories (a silent move that’s put us in line with just half a dozen countries and hurt the peace process in the Middle East – good work, Aussie).

Pyne5In short, you are being treated like idiots.

As I mentioned last time I wrote on Auspol, Australia is becoming a mushroom democracy where we’re kept in the dark, fed bullshit and expected to just go along for the ride. Your government wants to be out of sight and out of mind.

Meanwhile, we’re going to fall behind the world in setting ourselves up for a carbon economy, our relationships with neighbours are getting worse, Gina Rinehart going to keep getting fatter on super-profits that will never spread to the people who own the land she digs up, the nation’s kids are not going to have the education we all thought they might have and the people already doing it tough can just keep on doing it tougher.

Speaking of Gina Rinehart, if Fairfax’s largest shareholder – in both respects – gets her way then Fairfax will either be a mining missive or it’ll be on its way out the door. When that happens, the only physical newspapers you’ll be able to buy will be based on the aforementioned Liberal Party newsletter. You’ll have to go online to get real independent news about what your Mushroom Government is doing. I guess it’s no wonder, then, that Malcolm Turnbull wants to roll out a sub-standard National Broadband Network.

But fret not, you’ll be asked to forgive them all in three years time and chances are, by then, that a few of you will.


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  1. On the bright side, at least we don’t have to listen to “The Snivelling Weasel” every day … (now, if I can just say this….) (now, let me say this….)

    1. I don’t think there’s been an Aussie PM that’s been genuinely interesting to listen to since Keating. Howard was good during the Bali bombing and the Port Arthur response, but awful pretty much any other time.

      It’s good Rudd’s gone, but it’s also a tad off the point IMHO. The best part about him going isn’t the pithy phrases or the hand gestures. It’s the much needed clear air for the opposition.

  2. Ah…. The old ‘how do you know when a politician is lying? His lips move!’ routine.

    Don’t feel too bad Swade. The liberals in the UK are just as bad. Nick Clegg (Liberal party leader here in the UK) did exactly the same before our last general election with the student fees fiasco. Said one thing before the election to make sure he got the votes but as soon as he got a sniff of power with Cameron and the Tories, out went the promises and in came the deals. Now he wanders around the Houses of Commons like a grey shadow. When I see him now he looks like a dead man walking.
    It’s a pity too as the Liberal Party really did have a chance of making some progress but now they have just shown themselves to be exactly like all the rest; Out for what they can get.

    Clegg sold out his party and his supporters hence why just about every other political party in the UK are beating them in the polls.

    I’m glad I didn’t vote for them; and now thanks to Clegg, I never will.

    1. You’ll get some Aussie flavour in your next election, Marius. A guy named Mark Textor has been hired by the Tories to assist them with getting a better feel for the public pulse. He’s been widely credited for honing Abbott’s message over the last few months, aligning their policy stance with the public mood.

      Anything that sounds amazingly poignant, perhaps slightly unusual and very convenient will likely be down to him.

      Textor’s had a bad week, incidentally. We have a public spat with Indonesia at the moment and Textor likened the Indo foreign minister to a 1970’s Philipino porn star in a comment on Twitter. An amazing lapse of judgement for a guy lauded for that very quality. Didn’t go down well.

    2. Marius, it’s worth clarifying for you in case you don’t know that the “liberal” party here in australia is the other side of the fence to the Lib Dems in the UK – they’re the conservatives of aus politics. At leat the lib Dems, like the greens and often labour, tend to have the best of intentions.

  3. Australian politicians WHAT A SHOWER OF BASTARDS greens, liberals, labor, nationals all on the gravy train, complete one term in the senate and get an 80k pension for the rest of your life then shaft our kids to pay for their pensions …. Leigh Sales recently said “you ask an Australian politician what they had for breakfast and they tell you what they had for lunch”

    1. Well, it’s catching over here in the US, too. I have such distaste right now for all of them, Republican, Democrat, Tea Party,Independents. If they’ve been in office for two terms or more, they need to go. It seems that the whole government is now simply the legitimizing front for internal graft and petty theft. Weeks reel by with no real progress, yet the money sucking apparatus grows ever hungrier.

  4. If you’re collecting quotes about politicians you need this one: Henry Kissinger once said that “90% of politicians give the other 10% a bad reputation”.