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This story tickled my fancy this morning because it has a great deal to say about the silliness of European governments and it suggests a new and environmentally friendly way to promote
suicide euthanasia tourism.
Really could anyone think of a cleaner or greener way to end the suffering of the terminally ill? All that has to be done is to throw them off the same cliff, a thousand foot drop will be enough to end their lives very quickly and disposal of the mortal remains will be assured as well as being a great way of helping the survival of an endangered species… Its a win win win idea whose time has surely come.
Levity aside though this story does highlight the unintended consequences of government decisions because if the long traditional practice of disposing of dead live stock by leaving them for the vultures has made what was a benefit to the farmers a liability which is itself symbolic of the way that the whole European experiment is failing because while the European union may have heralded an era of unprecedented peace it has replaced the cycle of war with the false hope of unity and the petty minded stupidity of an unloved bureaucratic hierarchy.
This couple must qualify as sure fire top notch contenders for the “Darwin awards”, and exemplars of the concepts that underlay the Raison Detre for the awards in the first place:
What can you say in the face of such stupidity?
As Oscar Wilde suggested in his play “The importance of being Earnest” to loose one child is sad but to loses two….
In this case its obvious to me that the good Lord is sending the very clear message that he won’t have any truck with being expected to provide health care to the faithful when there are perfectly good GPs out in the world…
This post is dedicated to my brother the believer…
There is something rather Zombie like about the Gillard government as we traverse the days between now and September 14. They keep trying to pretend that they are still alive but we can all see the green tinge of putrefaction in their collective pallor and we can see the increasingly stilted gait as they go through the motions of government. Gillard talks with faux confidence “Gonski”, NDIS, NBN and all of their other pie in the sky schemes but absolutely no one is listening, NO one believes that Labor will ever be in a position to deliver on anything they promise.
The one thing that they can deliver on that they would be well advised not is the appointment of ” Labor mates” to various well paid government jobs. It really is the worst kind of nepotism so too would be any move by Gillard to appoint a new Governor General as Tony Abbott has made clear in the letter to the Dead PM walking leaked to the Fairfax press:
In the letter, Mr Abbott complains about the recent reappointment of the Australian Electoral Commissioner and other public service appointments, and invokes the ”caretaker” convention to suggest the current government is going beyond its legitimate authority.
”In my view, the decision to announce these appointments subverts the established convention that no government should make decisions that are legitimately the province of a potential successor,” he wrote in the letter dated April 21. ”The announcement of appointments expressed to take effect almost nine months into the term of the next parliament and some 15 months before they become operative is a blatant abuse of power.”
Mr Abbott argues that to attempt to recommend the appointment of a new governor-general more than six months before the term would commence is ”without modern precedent”.
”Quite properly, arrangements regarding the appointment of a new governor-general would be, and should be, a matter for a new or a returned prime minister after the September 14 election.
”Thus, I seek your specific assurance that this precedent will be respected and that arrangements for the appointment of a new governor-general will be a matter for an incoming or re-elected government.”
You could take the view that Gillard’s behaviour is understandable given the inevitability of her political demise however I think that it makes evident a total lack of good character or any commitment to protecting the reputation of the high office that she currently holds. She is just buying more time in the political wilderness for any of her parliamentary colleges who happen to survive the coming electoral annihilation.
I can’t help but compare Gillard to Gough and think that the later had more principle and more good graces than Gillard will ever have, likewise history will not be anywhere near as kind to Rudd and Gillard and their governments than it is to Whitlam. I certainly think that the last five years will go down as the most ineptly governed period in this nation’s history and we just be thankful that despite the grossest maladministration we still have a very robust economy than can only improve with the return of the Coalition to the treasury benches.
Finally I would like to offer a rather telling aside and it is that I have noticed that even the most rabid of Gillard’s cheer squad have substantially reduced the number of their postings trying to defend the government and commentary has likewise been reduced to a few “hail fellow well met” cringe worthy responses and then silence. To me it means that even the far left have given up on Gillard as well as exhausted their “abbott Abbott ABBOTT!” rhetoric even though we still have months to go before the election. I can’t help thinking that come September that Labor will be “the love that dare not speak its name” which is ironic indeed when you consider that Abbott is now holding out the possibility that after the election the party room my reconsider its position on Gay marriage.
I have been greatly bemused by the instance from the Gillard cheer squad that Gillard’s misfortunes are all down to the hostile media in the thrall of both Rupert Murdoch and Gina Reinhardt they insist that even the ABC has become an instrument of the evil right wing conspiracy to oust their heroin(e) from the lodge. Gillard’s low standing is , they insist all because nothing she does is reported clearly and honestly without the efforts of the evil media overlords. Its desperate ranting the most of it and full to the brim with denial of the simple fact that we are being governed by the worst administration on living memory. It is a party that has lost every shred of its dignity and I just can’t help but think that Gillard is working from precisely the same script as the one that was so diligently used by the unlamented Anna Bligh.
Like Bligh we have had the economic incompetence (who can forget Labor’s billion dollar stuff up of the Nurses pay system? ) and the undignified attempts to smear an ascendant opposition leader. None of which resulted any rise in the standing of the incumbent, if anything media stunts like Gillard’s “misogyny speech” only spoke positively to the most devoted of her acolytes the rest of the nation just went “ho-hum” and wrote it off as more undignified whining. The very final act of desperation form Bligh, in interlay begging the voters not to give Campbell Newman too much power worked so well for Labor that in opposition they have been reduced to a mere eight seas in the Queensland parliament and total irrelevance to the political process here.
Federally that is the prospect that Labor faces as well, to be frank I thought until recently that federal Labor might just fare better that Bligh at the next election but now I think otherwise. They seem likely to loose most of not all of their seats up here in Queensland, Rudd may be the exception because he has done a rather effective job of self promotion, Swan on the other hand is widely derided for his incompetence and I don’t think that he can survive the swing to ride the roundabout of opposition, why would eh want to anyway? If he were to hold his seat I don’t think it would be long before he found an excuse to retire from politics even though the seat would likely be lost in a subsequent by election.
Then we have the joys of western Sydney that Gillard has been partaking of during the last week, boy what a great success that has been for Labor Julia Gillard and her minders have managed to get just about every thing arse about as Mungo MacCallum points out:
It is hard to believe with hindsight, but Julia Gillard’s safari to the western suburbs of Sydney was not really such a bad idea.
After all, this is – or at least has been since time immemorial – Labor territory, and in the present circumstances it needs a bit of tender loving care. It may be too late; the patient may be beyond recovery. But Gillard had to make the effort.
And if it was always going to look more like campaigning than governing, to quote her own rather artificial distinction, well, so what? Given that Tony Abbott has done nothing but campaign for the past 40 months, she can hardly be blamed for playing a bit of catch-up.
The mistake was to confuse campaigning with slapstick. Almost the only good thing that came out of last week’s fiasco was that it made the perfect scenario for a textbook on how to lose friends and influence people – to vote against you. It must have taken real dedication to cram so many errors, gaffes and downright embarrassments into a single expedition.
Even the normally sympathetic Fairfax press this morning ran a piece by Alan Stokes that can only be described as the cold hard light of reality reminding the Age faithful that Life under an Abbott government will not be the sum of all of the Latte sippers fears as the left’s denailists have repeatedly insisted:
Amid all the scaremongering, it’s easy to forget this: Labor and the Liberals tussle mostly over the middle ground. Most government decisions emerge from consensus or compromise between two fairly similar world views. Cynics might even say modern politics is all about power and not world views anyway.
Still, the measure of a caring nation is how it treats its most vulnerable. So we cannot ignore the dangers of changing to Abbott. But we can be realistic. The awkward reality for middle Australia is usually that what’s lost on the political roundabout is gained on the swing.
Australia now also effectively will have a press licensing system. Any media outlet not signed up to a government-endorsed media regulator will lose journalistic privileges such as exemptions from privacy laws.
This will force media groups that are not presently members of bodies such as the press council to join, and is a powerful threat to existing members that they must not leave. It will be virtually impossible to run a media outlet in Australia without being under the supervision of government-appointed bureaucrats.
The last time that media outlets were subject to press licensing in the English-speaking world was 1693. What was too tyrannical for the English in the time of William and Mary is apparently acceptable in 21st-century Australia.
I can’t for the life of me imagine that Conroy’s scheme will be anything other than a distraction rather in the mould to the Gay marriage push of recent memory. In one sense its clever politics to push this issue because its bound to raise the passions of the devoted to Gillard crew and help cement that siege/victim mentality about the “MSM” however for the general public it will be even more evidence of a government a drift in a sea of its self made troubles. The requirement for the endorsement of the Greens and Independents means that Labor can float this grand scheme, have it shot down by Oakshott, Wilkie or Windsor and still claim that they have “tried their best” to the faithful while not having to deliver on what is a rather bad idea. For those of us who are fans of the game its a totally transparent play and even if by some confluence of political(bad) luck Labor does mange to get this up it has no chance of surviving a change of government. So its futility is very clear indeed.
None of this will add to the dignity of the Labor party and without some dignity no amount of stunts and political manoeuvring will save the Federal Labor Party from a rout of Queensland or West Australian proportions. Will Gillard realise the futility of her position and seek the good grace that she has squandered with the likes of her misogyny speech, or will we see an ever changing parade of more desperate nonsense like Conroy’s announcement yesterday? Going on the Labor record I expect the latter.
- Life under Abbott: don’t panic (theage.com.au)
- PM attacks ‘vicious and personal’ (smh.com.au)
- ALP ‘faces massacre under Julia Gillard’ (bigpondnews.com)
- Labor leadership – it’s not just about September 14 (crikey.com.au)
- PM has to go, urges Rudd camp (smh.com.au)
- PM announces election (smh.com.au)
- Attacks on PM ‘vicious and personal’ (theage.com.au)
- Public heckle Gillard in parliament (dailytelegraph.com.au)
If there is one certainty in this country it is the simple fact that The Fairfax press will always give any Labor government the benefit of the doubt for far longer than it will do for any Coalition administration. Its just what we expect from them because most of their journos are sympathetic to leftist thinking and ideology. Thus when you have a lead story suggesting that Gillard resign from the Prime Minister position then things must be really crook with the government:
Some how though I doubt that Gillard will go with any dignity, that she is capable of making the ultimate sacrifice for the sake of the party. She is just arrogant enough to think that her losing face by resigning would be less preferable than leading the party into the blazing guns of a well disciplined opposition who are not in the mood for showing any mercy to a government as bad and incompetent as her administration.
One can only think that Gillard is imagining this poem,
Cannon to right of them,
Cannon to left of them,
Cannon behind them
Volley’d and thunder’d;
Storm’d at with shot and shell,
While horse and hero fell,
They that had fought so well
Came thro’ the jaws of Death
Back from the mouth of Hell,
All that was left of them,
Left of six hundred.
and imagining that she will be redeemed in a political afterlife as one of the glorious dead who went down fighting. We are not however any longer in the age of Alfred, Lord Tennyson where we glory in the noble but stupid and pointless sacrifice. We are in an age of pragmatic politics where we expect that the sacrifice for the greater good should be as bloodless as possible. Of course I agree with Fairfax press insofar s they are suggesting that Gillard has used up all of her electoral good will frankly it no longer matters how she tries to present her self, no matter what sort contortions she tries hers is a lost cause and she can only drag the entire party down further with each extra day she stays in the lodge.
Ray must be just as despairing as all of the all the other ALP tragics at this point in time because even Kevin “I’m here to help” Rudd will lack the power to retain office at the election. You see I used to think that Rudd “could save the furniture” but now I’m not so sure, because the party brand has been so tainted by the Gillard crew that even many of their “true believers” will either vote for Abbott or, as I think more likely, just abstain by making an informal vote on September.
Of course the coffin makers union are delighted at the prospects of such a large surge in business from the Labor light brigade but they are , like so many unions, being short sighted and self focused because for the sake of our democracy we do actually need two parties who are both relatively competent in government and who will deliver to the people good governance and sound administration and the real tragedy of the Gillard government is that they have demonstrated that the ALP are not only unfit to govern but also that they are also not going to be capable of providing a respectable or credible opposition for a a very long time either.
- Rudd is Labor’s last chance (theage.com.au)
- Poll a ‘wake-up call’ (smh.com.au)
- Labor pains? Up pops Rudd (smh.com.au)
- Our new preferred PM (smh.com.au)
- Labor, Gillard slip in latest Nielsen poll (abc.net.au)
- ‘Just let it wash through’ (theage.com.au)
- Milne dumps Gillard in preparation for an Abbott government (theconversation.edu.au)
- Ministers call for unity after bad poll (news.theage.com.au)
- Labor is all about workers, Gillard says (news.theage.com.au)
- Gillard calls on unions as polls plunge (abc.net.au)
In Poker they are called “tells” those little micro behaviors that give away the true standing of the other players’ hands and there are many tells from the Labor card sharps that things are pretty dire in the cards that they have left to play. Sadly for the ever more disillusioned true believers its obvious that having Gillard as the major card holder will see them banished from the table without a stake to play again anytime soon. with the latest polling seeing the Labor chances making that mythical snowflake on holiday in Hades seem very very enduring indeed. I have no doubt that their next move will be to go for the all in bet of restoring Rudd to the lodge. There is however one problem with all in bets and that is the very real chance that others at the table will know that you are bluffing…
To be honest I can’t see how Rudd will make any substantial difference to Labor ‘s impending doom. Its rather like thinking that it will be better to have five bullets to the head is going to be less fatal than six lead injections. Dead is dead and this labor government is in the Zombie zone now no amount of face paint is going to hide that fact.
In the mean time Tony Abbott is looking more and more Prime Ministerial as he goes about the very necessary job of enunciating both the policy and direction that we can expect from his government:
While I have reservations about the emphasis on growth its very clear that he is calm clear and focused while I am certain that an Abbott government will not be perfect I am equally sure that it will be better than the shambolic mob who have been trembling in fear as Julia Gillard’s Kool-aid has been passed around, will they drink deep from that deadly draft or will they instead swallow the bitter brew of Rudd suds? Either way many of the Labor Caucus will need to check out this website sooner rather than later.
Algerian forces who had ringed the Ain Amenas complex in a tense standoff had vowed not to negotiate with the kidnappers, who reportedly were seeking safe passage. Security experts said the end of the two-day standoff was in keeping with the North African country’s tough approach to terrorism.The kidnapping is one of the largest ever attempted by a militant group in North Africa.The militants phoned a Mauritanian news outlet to demand that France end its intervention in neighboring Mali to ensure the safety of the hostages in the isolated plant, located 1300 kilometres south of the capital of Algiers.Phone contacts with the militants were severed as government forces closed in, according to the Mauritanian agency, which often carries reports from al-Qaida-linked extremist groups in North Africa.
The news coming out of Algeria is still rather uncertain but what is clear is that the rescue effort has resulted in some casualties amongst those held by the Islamists as sad as that is you just can’t dwell upon that or blame those soldiers who have mounted the operation. It has been my belief ever since the exceptional rescue of hostages from Entebbe by Israeli Commandos way back in the day that the only way to realistically consider such events is to work on the basis that you consider the hostages already dead and any that you manage to save are enjoying a second life which is a bonus.
Does that sound rather heartless?
Well maybe it is but it is also realistic given how too many of those who worship Allah want to buy their place in heaven with the blood of infidels. You just can not negotiate with such people and the only thing that you can realistically do is take them out as quickly and as effectively as you can. Perfection in such operations is of course achieved when all hostages are freed but to my mind a rescue operation is still a success if only one hostage is resurrected and all of the terrorists are killed or captured. It Is still unclear as to how many of the hostages have survived but its more than one so a success in my book.
Cue a chorus of complaints that will decry the deaths of the hostages and suggest ineptitude by the Algerian rescuers rather than celebrate those who have been saved.
- Militants say 35 hostages dead in Algerian raid (miamiherald.com)
- Militants: 35 hostages die in Algerian raid (posttrib.suntimes.com)
- Islamists say scores dead in Algeria (bigpondnews.com)
- Militants say hostages die in Algerian raid (kansascity.com)
- Militants: 35 hostages dead in Algerian copter attack (cbsnews.com)
- Bloodshed at gas plant as Algerian forces attempt to liberate hostages (washingtontimes.com)