Common Sense Dies Here #55

Welcome to Common Sense Dies Here #55, back whinging into the void.

Mal Trumble shrugged off an outbreak of the homophobia he was repeatedly warned would arise from a plebiscite on same-sex marriage. Rather than outright condemn posters which called on voters to “Stop The Fags” , he reverted to “on many sides” style nonsense: “I deplore disrespectful, abusive language, whether it is directed at young gay people or religious people or people of different religions”. “One of the problems in this debate is the tendency to caricature each side. The vast majority of people involved in this debate — and of course the vast majority of Australians, 99.99 per cent or whatever — are very respectful of each other” he asserted.

So, as long as you don’t use words like fag, It’s apparently perfectly respectful to claim that same-sex relationships lead to child abuse and a corrosion of society’s morality. I’m sure the LGBTI community are deeply appreciative of the polite manner in which many argue they should be second class citizens.

Head of the ACL, Lyle Shelton, reaffirmed his commitment to respectful debate by suggesting the posters were actually a smear campaign by same-sex marriage advocates. “I know the people on our side of the debate and we’re not like that and nor would we be like that” he said, despite the fact the bills in question cite spurious figures from a study endorsed by the ACL.

After it became apparent it was actually the work of neo-Nazis, Lyle fell oddly silent. But, even though he has similar views to actual fucking Nazis, we shouldn’t forget that it’s really the insidious homosexual agenda we need to worry about. As Lyle pointed out in one of his previous considerate contributions to the debate, it’s pushing us towards the kind of “unthinkable things” that “happened in Germany in the 1930s”. If anyone needs any more convincing of the homo-fascist menace, look no further than the packages containing suspicious, yet ultimately harmless, white powder that Lyle definitely hasn’t been mailing to himself.

Lyle won’t shut up about religious freedom when it come to same-sex marriage. But, based on his supportive retweet of Peta Credlin’s call for a ban on the burqa, that concern doesn’t extend to Muslims. Then again, as his conception of religious freedom seems to involve forcing his weird morality on the rest of society, I suppose there’s no contradiction.

All recent talk about the burqa is, of course, the result of Pauline Hanson wearing one in the Senate chamber. Even if we ignore the ridiculousness of George Brandis recasting himself as a defender of the vulnerable, much of the critical response to Pauline’s attention seeking left something to be desired. It took a ridiculous amount of time for any pollie to point out that the burqa is only worn by a small minority of Muslim women in Australia. 8 days after, Richard Di Natale asked “What is the problem here? We have a tiny fraction of our community who decide to wear a particular form of religious and cultural dress”.

Yes, banning the burqa would be counterproductive. And that would be just as true if they were a lot more women wearing it. But still, Pauline’s insidious narrative relies on depicting Islam as a monolithic entity. And failing to point out that only a minuscule number of women wear the burqa in this country, and many others, leaves that unchallenged.

Pauline’s One Nation droog, Malcolm Roberts, is facing a real challenge holding on to his seat. He conceded that he didn’t sign renunciation forms for his British citizenship until after he was elected. That he tried to claim he’s never been a citizen of any country but Australia goes to show that, if it doesn’t fit with his world view, he’ll even ignore his own empirical evidence.

Matt Canavan also went back on his initial story, admitting that he’s actually been an Italian citizen since he was 2. Even if he miraculously manages to keep his seat, dishonestly blaming Mummy for his fuck up should severely limit his political career prospects. He should probably start planning for the future now. I’d suggest finding out whether Adani would be willing to start paying him for the advocacy work he’s so kindly done for free up to this point.

Unlike Mal and Matt, Barnaby Joyce is still trying to claim there was no way he could have possibly known he was a New Zealand citizen. But that assertion is rather weakened by the fact his media advisor told journos that Barnyard resolved any issue with potential NZ citizenship years ago. It suggests they weren’t aware of the possibility until it was raised with them, and then lied in attempt to conceal the fact Barn was in breach of the constitution. Or that they were aware of it all along, but never bothered to sort it out. Either way, it’s not a good look.

Speaking of which, embarrassed at shitting their pants in front of the whole school, the government have attempted to fling some of the excrement at the Opposition. But without any evidence, they’re essentially just flicking it back into their own faces while Labor point and laugh. I have to be honest, Labor’s refusal to release any evidence of their supposed extensive vetting process confused me at first. I even began to suspect it was all an ill advised bluff. But, while it still might turn out that way, a friend evidently more devious than I am pointed out that the more baseless accusations the Coalition makes, the more desperate and pathetic they look. So, even if they do exist, why would Labor bother releasing the documents?

That being said, Short William might wanna reconsider some of his attacks. Comparing questions about his potential British citizenship with the racially charged conspiracy theories Barack Obama faced is fucking tone death, to say the least.

Anyway, the Libs and the Nats are the 2 parties that have done the most in recent times to attack the rights of dual citizens and people with overseas heritage. So, there is a beautiful irony to them being hit the hardest by the Section 44 controversy. In a perfect reiteration of that irony, the Human Rights Commission and the Law Council of Australia expressed concerns about proposed changes to citizenship requirements. The Law Council’s president, Fiona McLeod, said the need for new English and values tests “is not substantiated by economic or social data”. And that they will “create divisions between new and existing citizens by having different requirements”.

Fiona also criticised Australian-Alpha Draconian dual citizen, Pete Dutton’s desire for increased power to overturn decisions by the Administrative Appeals Tribunal. She described it as “a significant erosion of the rights of review and protections of the rule of law because the minister is intending to take to himself the power to override or ignore the decision of the review tribunal”.

Pete was all too happy to provide another example of his disdain for the rule of law, labelling lawyers who represent irregular migrants “un-Australian”. Just goes to show that asylum seekers and refugees can’t win really. On the one hand, they get depicted as sinister extremists seeking to replace our legal system with sharia. On the other, when they actually engage with that system, they get told they and their pinko lawyers are an affront to Australian values.

In a further example of the Coalition’s hostility towards the vulnerable, and disdain for expertise, they continued to push ahead with their plans to drug test welfare recipients. In attempt to explain why, Christian Porter said there was “lots of evidence”. But then suggested “No one has quite done particularly what we’re doing here in Australia anywhere else in the world”. Right, he’s talked about evidence that doesn’t really exist there. And then used that non-existent evidence to justify a policy he says hasn’t been tried anywhere else. Has anyone fucking drug tested him? He’s incoherent and delusional.

Alan Tudge’s grip on reality was equally tenuous, as he talked up the possibility of a “behavioural impact, whereby people stop using drugs because they are thinking ‘Well, you know what, I might just get tested in the near future, I am not going to take it anymore’ “. If someone is capable of casually stopping drugs because they might get tested, then they don’t have a fucking drug problem. That Al seems unsure whether he’ll be able to solve those non existent addictions suggests even he realises he’s a fucking incompetent.

If that wasn’t mind-boggling enough, Tony Abbott again displayed his utter lack of self awareness. He quickly segued from laughing off the time he got so drunk he couldn’t do his generously salaried, taxpayer funded job, to arguing that the money welfare recipients “get from taxpayers be quarantined to the essentials of life”. Otherwise it’ll just be “blown on booze”, you see. I know it’s crass to wish death upon someone. But Tone is a crass man, so it’s unfortunate he woke up at all back in 2009, instead of choking on his own vomit. Which, coincidentally, is something his behaviour regularly makes me feel like I’m about to do.

Anyway, researchers from UNSW have found that the dole is not only below the poverty line, but also under the minimum amount needed to live a healthy life. If Chris, Al, and Tony are really concerned about welfare recipients’ health and employability, they should consider increasing payments. I won’t hold my breath though. Unless, of course, I’m waiting for the nausea to pass after seeing one of the smirking pricks on TV.

Despite the never-ending deluge of flimflam from his Coalition colleagues, if Mathias Cormann is to be believed, it’s actually Labor that are divorced from reality. He accused Short William of “socialist revisionism” that played on the ignorance of the “roughly 18%” of the electorate that were “born after the fall of the Berlin Wall and the failure of a system of government that destroyed the economies of eastern Europe”. Too right! As any attentive student of history knows, the fall of the Eastern Bloc was directly linked to policies which taxed landlords, the wealthy, and corporations, slightly more.

Responding to calls to amend colonial statues, Mal Trumble dropped some reds under the bed rhetoric of his own: “If you want to write a new chapter in our history, if you want to challenge assumptions in the past, by all means do so, but we can’t get into this Stalinist exercise of trying to wipe out or obliterate or blank out parts of our history”.

When a statue celebrating Captain Cook for “discovering this territory” was sprayed with critical graffiti,Mal ramped up his attack: “This is what Stalin did. When he fell out with his henchmen he didn’t just execute them, they were removed from all official photographs — they became non-persons, banished not just from life’s mortal coil but from memory and history itself”.

Perhaps it’s just me, but I’m not sure spray painting something on an inanimate object is the same as killing human beings, and erasing them from official history. Also, surely it’s the people, like Mal, that oppose acknowledging the misdeeds of historical figures that are trying to blank out parts of history. Maybe that’s the malign influence of Cultural Bolshevism talking though. Sorry, I mean Cultural Marxism.

Anyway, Mal still seems unable to accept that his constant appeals to reactionaries won’t save him. One day soon, after he crashes out of politics, he’ll be forced to reflect on his own place in history. And the manner in which he obliterated the high regard much of the electorate once held him in. Try as he might to blank it out with gadgets, and specially commissioned artworks by famous painters, eventually he’ll be forced to face the fact that he’ll now forever be remembered as a fucking pointless invertebrate with a defective waffle maker where his heart should have been.