Saturday, March 3, 2012

He Will Fit Right In

OUR PM's habit of telling lies is a matter of public record, so there is no real need to provide any further links to demonstrate her compulsion for saying one thing one day and quite another the next. It is an approach to truth and consistency which Bob Carr, her soon-to-be foreign minister, appears to share. Here is Carr at yesterday's news conference, where he hailed Kevin Rudd's support for Western efforts to aid Libya's rebels and bring down Colonel Gadafi:

BOB CARR YESTERDAY: I want to praise the achievements of Kevin Rudd in foreign policy. The establishment and consolidation of Australia's membership of the G20, his G20 advocacy was outstanding, the single regional institution for Asia, the US membership of the East Asia Summit, the leadership on Libya and Somalia...

Rudd must have had a good chuckle at that one, as less than a year ago Carr was fuming about that same Western intervention -- a cause Rudd supported and which placed him at odds with Gillard:

BOB CARR,  MAY 2011: I have written before on the sheer, towering stupidity of the so-called “humanitarian intervention” in Libya. Who are we helping? Is it extending the suffering of the civil war? Are the Anglo-French forces (how redolent of Suez!) getting drawn deeper? ... If any good has come out of this wrong-headed, amateur-hour intervention, it has escaped me.

As a professional liar, Gillard must be relieved beyond belief to have a kindred spirit handling the Foreign Affairs portfolio

UPDATE: It is interesting to watch the press gallery come around, pick up Labor's talking points and parrot them. Channel 10s Paul Bongiorno put it this way immediately after the announcement of Carr's ascension:

This morning, Phillip Adams' chummy confidante on Radio National is digging the vibe:


  1. "Rudd must have had a good chuckle"
    I don't know about Rudd, but I'm having a good chuckle at the commentators who a few days ago were accusing Gillard of weakness and being rolled by the "faceless men" and are now thrashing around for a new angle. How dare she lead them up the garden path, and then surprise them with Carr's appointment.
    Poetic justice.....

    1. Elizabeth (Lizzie) B.March 3, 2012 at 2:17 PM

      'Drongo' - what a very special word, as noted by withtwist below. We should use it more often.

      Very bad press is not a good look, so the faceless intervened yet again, Numbers. She is a twit; always will be.

    2. To lead someone down the garden path is to deceive them. So yeah, she does that all right.

  2. What is it about reading "all of Proust" and mouthy drongoism? Why are the two always connected?

  3. "the leadership on Libya and Somalia..."

    How anyone can see Kruddentrop's bleatings on Libya as anything other than a national embarrassment is beyond me.

    Sure, he encouraged the US and Europeans to commit forces but what did he, and thus Australia, offer? Absolutely nothing in the way of force. In other words: "Hey fellas, there's a fight on, best you lot get stuck in, I'll cheer you on." All he needed to do was start sooking and it would have been the perfect display of what is seen as "leadership" in the 21st century.

    Nevertheless, thanks to Kruddentrop, Australia is apparently the third biggest aid donor to Libya. Maybe the grateful, liberated Libyans could spare some of that to restore the desecrated graves of the WW2 veterans who had the misfortune to be buried in Benghazi.

    As for "leadership" on Somalia, what the hell is that about? How about we send the clown off to Mogadishu where he can show "leadership" IN Somalia.


    1. PhillipGeorge(c)2012March 3, 2012 at 3:12 PM

      Quo Vadis jupes. Once the idea was a people couldn't possibly know where they were going unless they knew where they were coming from.

      So very many Journos, opinionators, numbers men so very busy looking at each other and in the mirror the idea of an independent idea on anything is impossibly hard.

      Christianity is exploding in Sub Sahara Africa and China. Deserts are shrinking with rising CO2 levels. More plant life means more food for animals and humans.

      The mission is to build dams and coal fired power stations. Now.

      The prodigal son is another story of the farm being run by pigs and the children sleeping with them. Another point of convergence between Orwell and God.

      Pagans and dickheads is the alternate rendering of history. Liberal or Labor by matters of degree.

    2. PhillipGeorge(c)2012March 3, 2012 at 4:19 PM

      Albo likes Michael Douglas and Obama is an X-files fan Prof. Quality stuff:

      I was in the toilets between Darwin and Sydney chucking furiously two nights ago. Five glasses of wine on top of a light lunch with a paid off work crew was about two too many. The nausea from some turbulent skies and the cheaper wine following good was still easier to stomach than this story.

      They called Costello a "smirker". Remember Julia saying "Another boat another policy failure"

      To these people you are the bucket Prof.

    3. Have you been drinking Phil?

      Not quite sure where you are coming from or indeed, where you are going with this.


    4. I'm sure that made sense before it hit the keyboard. Afterward, not so much. Try using some quaint concepts such as context, narrative and subject. Then you may in fact get to the point.

    5. PhillipGeorge(c)2012March 4, 2012 at 11:19 AM

      The difference between esoteric and obtuse could be the ability to perceive some linear relationships.

      "the high moral ground" jupes!

      Australia doesn't have it - and it will play out in electricity prices as well as science report cards.

      You know, CO2 traps heat like a mouse trap gets a mouse. Your meeja at work. Orwell's big pig sty and the prodigal son - seamless.

      O.K. - I knew what I meant.


      br Phillip, of those Liberian flag ships - wish there were happy vegemites.

  4. lol, nice pick up Prof.

  5. The Old and Unimproved DaveMarch 3, 2012 at 2:52 PM

    It's always a good day for the Labor spin-meisters when Paul's around.

    1. We shouldn't forget that Bonge made his bones as the weather boy at TVQ.
      The first rule in doing the weather is to never deviate from the Bureau forecast. He's just applying that same rule to any ALP reportage.

  6. I think it's important to understand in all this that Australian Minister for Foreign Affairs isn't a particularly difficult or complex job, certainly in comparison to Treasury, Defence or even some of the interior ministries - Primary Industry, for example - where there are all sorts of competing pressures and interests to be managed. Apart from obsessives like the UN Association of Australia, there is very litle community interest in Foreign Affairs and beyond PNG and the South Pacific, Australia isn't all that important on the world stage, so the job is mostly light weight stuff, bloviating and glad handing, backed up by a department that's 'supportive' and 'responsive' to the point of hand-feeding!

    Tony Street was Foreign Minister, so was Bill Haydon, neither of them had any reputation for being great foreign policy brains, although Bill seemed to love the hospitality. Of course, a Foreign Minister can be proactive like Rudd, but whether anyone cares, or whether it makes a positive difference, is another matter. You can be very self-indulgent as Foreign Minister, physically and mentally, and this may be what has attracted Carr.

    BTW, I worked for several years in DFAT.

    Consuela Potez

  7. Onya, prof! Excellent catch!

    I've read so many theories about the machinations behind this appointment that my head is spinning.

    But whichever way I look at it I see that Gillard almost stuffed it up--again--and it shows.

    It surely couldn't have been her own plan from conception,as she was so clod-footed when the Australian got wind of something and blew her cover so to speak.

    Maybe it was always the NSW Right's plan,with Carr driving it and Arbib tapped, then Julia stumbled due to the anger of her close henchmen who wanted to be rewarded for Monday's loyalty vote?

    In any case I'm damned sure the Labor caucus is about as united behind the Gingerella or lying Slapper as a marooned mob of sailors with one can of beans washed ashore with their ship's scattered wreckage

    Also, I'm sure the Labor union factions are still pulling strings where they see any advantage to be gained,and that Carr will spin like a whirling dervish and outdo the Slapper-- to mash my metaphors yet again!

  8. Disparate days for the "Boorjwas soshalists" raiding the crypt!who is next? Keaton? The drunk Hawkie? goff is stuffed so is Kiner ! They are running out of OLD LOSERS.we will have to be content with the NEW LOSERS ! In 18months the Bastards will be losers .Queenslanders! Set the path for the rest of us ,massacre these pretenders in your election this the arrogant Bastardst the door!

    1. One adduces they called "Last drinks" a bit too late.

    2. Yep
      I hear Kirner has the use of one eye left

      She also allegedly works p/t advising Ted Baillieu,and moreover, thinks he should have used a fire hose when he came in , instead of keeping all the white ants in their spots!

  9. Nice Prof.
    I wasn't critical of Carr till you pointed this out. (Thanks to our Mejah) I'll be watching him more closely for flaws now.

  10. People forget Carr got the ALP leader guernsey as "last man standing" after Greiner saw off Unsworth's government. The mob remaining after Unsworth were as mediocre as they get.

    The only other contender was Laurie Brereton, who was still caught up / tainted by Botany Council shenanigans and could not take the mantle. He was ordinary then - a mere footsoldier to the way more capable figures in the powerful NSW Right (Brereton, Sheehan, Einfeld, Mulock) - and set about proving that for a couple of decades.

    Suddenly politics became vitally important in the hitherto junior ranked Department of Planning, when he was Minister, and it has been on the skids professionally ever since. They never stopped reporting to him even when he was in Opposition.

    His early years were focussed on ensuring Frank Walker walked ahead of him at all times, except when the Cabinet Housing Committee met, when he'd race madly to arrive first so he could chair it.

    Besting the Libs/Nationals in NSW was easy during his time as Premier, because they were so busy knifing themselves in the chest. I'll warrant he spent lots of spare time then relaxing with his feet on the desk, gazing out over the Harbour pondering the US Civil War.

    The sheltered workshoppers (Bongiorno, Grattan etc) are lauding his journalist background as some sort of grand advantage - he was a mere pool assistant 30 odd years ago!

    As to high intellect and keen perception, a BA from UNSW in the '70s ain't nothing to crow about. If you weren't capable of competitive entry to Sydney they'd let you into the kindy classes at UNSW or Maquarie to get their numbers up - gawd they were awful, insignificant places!

  11. Professor,

    Like Piers Akerman you forgot the three most important things Carr and Gillard have in common:
    1. Both failed to win an election but rather won a negotiation with independents that include TONY WINDSOR;
    2. Both took over from fiscal reforming and corruption busting governments, Greiner with ICAC and Howard with the Cole Royal Commission and associated building watch dog. Both Howard and Greiner repaired their economies balance books; and
    3. Both Carr and Rudd - Gillard have benefitted from the strong financial position bequeathed to them by their conservative predecessors. Eventually both Carr and surely Rudd - Gillard's incompetence will destroy the fiscal legacy of the governments they replaced.

  12. Absolutely digusted by the press gallery's praise for Carr. He is the person who made NSW what it is today. What is his aim in Foreign Affairs then? To spread Labor's particular style of corruption throughout the world?