Australia’s Labor Politicians: Grey Clouds Are Gathering

I have got an absolutely priceless video for you today, you have to see it to believe it. I’m so glad it was posted on YouTube; I had intended to just print a text version of the quote.

Seeing the video though, that’s another matter, it makes it so much more amusing. But first…

The weather.

I often refer to the “dry season” and the “wet season” instead of summer and winter, simply because it is a more accurate description of our seasons here in Brisbane. And the further north you go in Australia, the more accurate that description becomes.

I have also referred to our “Californian weather” here; that generally happens during April and May when the sky is always blue and the temperature doesn’t vary much from around 25°C.

So right now, we are bang in the middle of our Californian weather period and also in the dry season. So why didn’t it stop raining all day Saturday? Strangely, a friend of mine said he thought it made a nice change.

That’s one way of looking at it, I suppose.

So, in the spirit of “what it’s really like to live in Australia”, if I am going to show you pictures like this when it’s hot and sunny…

An Australian winter sky

Blue Skies

Then I should also show you pictures like this when it’s wet and drizzly….

Grey Sky

Grey Sky

And that’s why it was so different from what we usually get, it was drizzle. I’ve written about it before in a post called Oh no! “It” Has Happened. Sunday was also a drizzle filled day, so it wasn’t a great weekend.

Even Friday’s scheduled “Rides Day” at our local school, a sort of travelling fairground setup, was postponed for a week.

So, did I do anything this weekend?

What exciting tales can I tell you about my ‘living the dream’ Australian lifestyle?

On Saturday, I voted in the local council elections, choosing my pick for both our local councillor and the Mayor of Brisbane. How exciting is that?

But don’t be fooled that it was a boring weekend. Politics, as it turned out, were the source of most of the weekend’s excitement.

Australia’s Labor Pollies: A Three Card Trick.

Two MPs have been sidelined by the Prime Minister while they face investigations into allegations of misconduct.

  • Craig Thompson has been accused of improper use of his union credit card, withdrawing around $100,000 worth of cash without providing receipts and also using the card to pay for prostitutes.
  • Peter Slipper is facing criminal allegations surrounding the misuse of his taxi allowances and a civil court action in which he is accused of the sexual harassment of a male staff worker.

It was probably only about 18 months ago that I was reading about the UK MPs expenses storm, which really was a massive story. But anyone thinking they can escape that sort of thing by moving to Australia will be sadly mistaken.

Does anyone know which country is the “go to” place for decent and honest MPs?

Anyway, this is a three card trick remember, so here’s the third MP I want to talk about, this one has NOT been sidelined.

Meet Bill Shorten MP, Minister for Employment and Workplace Relations, Financial Services and Superannuation. Here he is giving, ahem, his opinion on the ‘Slipper affair’.

This is astonishing….

Labors slender lead over the coalition is now so precarious, there is a strong possibility of an early election; it’s going to be very difficult for this government to hang on until next year.

Hey! I’d get to have another vote!

Text version:

For those of you who for some reason can’t watch the YouTube video, or in case this video ever gets taken down from YouTube, here’s the text version of part of the conversation.

Bill Shorten MP “The Prime Minister’s addressed this in a press conference in Turkey in the last few hours, I haven’t seen what she said, but let me say I support what it is that she said”

Interviewer “Hang on, you haven’t seen what she said….”

The employment Minister interrupts “…but I support what my Prime Minister said”

Interviewer “Well what’s your view?”

Bill Shorten MP “My view is what the Prime Minister’s view is.”

<End>

But do watch it if you can, it’s much funnier when you can see it.

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{ 4 comments… add one }
  • Arthur Graves May 3, 2012, 8:38 am | Link

    On the other hand, it’s a pretty easy question to avoid if he’d wanted to. He should/could’ve said that as he’s a member of the cabinet and the cabinet has to vote together if it is to work, then whatever the prime minister (leader of the cabinet) decides then that’s his line also. The answer he actually gave suggests he was keen to answer around the question rather than the question itself.

    • BobinOz May 3, 2012, 8:11 pm | Link

      I think he thought he was being smart, but I’m sure most people watching thought the exact opposite. As for “keen to answer around the question rather than the question itself” – isn’t that what politicians do?

  • Rupert May 1, 2012, 10:43 pm | Link

    “Did you threaten to overrule him, Mr Howard?” I wonder how Jeremy Paxman would have handled Bill Shorten.

    Thanks for posting – gave me a warm chuckle.

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