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My interview Razor Sharp 18 February
Me interviewed by Sharon Firebrace on Razor Sharp on Tuesday 18 February. (0)

My interview Razor Sharp 11 February 2014
Me interviewed by Sharon Firebrace on Razor Sharp this morning. The Royal Commission, car industry and age of entitlement get a lot of the coverage. (0)

Razor Sharp 4 February 2014
Me on 4 February 2014 on Razor Sharp with Sharon Firebrace. (0)

Time for a House Un-Australian Activities Committee?
Tony Abbott thinks the Australian Broadcasting Corporation is Un-Australian. I am looking forward to his government setting up the House Un-Australian Activities Committee. (1)

Make Gina Rinehart work for her dole

Sick kids and paying upfront


Save Medicare

Demonstrate in defence of Medicare at Sydney Town Hall 1 pm Saturday 4 January (0)

Me on Razor Sharp this morning
Me interviewed by Sharon Firebrace this morning for Razor Sharp. It happens every Tuesday. (0)

I am not surprised
I think we are being unfair to this Abbott ‘no surprises’ Government. I am not surprised. (0)

Send Barnaby to Indonesia
It is a pity that Barnaby Joyce, a man of tact, diplomacy, nuance and subtlety, isn’t going to Indonesia to fix things up. I know I am disappointed that Barnaby is missing out on this great opportunity, and I am sure the Indonesians feel the same way. [Sarcasm alert.] (0)



Programmatic specificity: what is Rudd talking about?

Has the politician who invented fair shake of the sauce bottle given up on talking to ordinary men and women? Programmatic specificity indeed!

Kevin Rudd, our esteemed man of the people, is in Italy for a few tips on how to run a crisis prone capitalist economy from other leaders who are  there for a  few tips on how to run a crisis prone capitalist economy.

Here’s what he said when asked about the possibility of any climate change action coming out of the meeting:

It is highly unlikely that anything will emerge from the MEF in terms of detailed programmatic specificity …

The MEF is the Major Economies Forum, or the rich man’s club.

And detailed programmatic specificity?  

I asked John, a former high ranking public servant, what that meant.

His answer was that Rudd was telling us that nothing concrete on climate change was going to come out of this meeting.

Well, why couldn’t Rudd say so?

I think there are two reasons. 

Rudd is a chameleon. He changes the colour of his tongue to better preen his audience.  

Hence Rudd used the phrase ‘fair shake of the sauce bottle’  in an attempt to show ordinary workers he really was one of us. The only problem is that it sounded rehearsed, almost as if it was the result of focus group analysis. 

Here is what I wrote in my article Fair suck of the sav, Kev:

What Rudd actually said was ‘fair shake of the sauce bottle, mate’. 

Presumably one of his 30 something year old advisers thought that would impress working class people. ‘See,  he’s really just one of us’  must have been their thinking. 

Shame they couldn’t even get the phrase right, but mixed up fair shake of the stick (or dice) and fair suck of the sauce bottle (or sav). It just proves he’s really not one of us after all.

It may also be that the ‘find a working class phrase’ committee in the  Prime Minister’s office thought ’suck’ had sexual connotations – sucking a sav might bring to mind oral sex – and we couldn’t have the Virgin king associated with anything like that, could we?

But detailed programmatic specificity sounds more like a genuine Ruddism.  It comes from his University training molded then by years of work as a public servant in Foreign Affairs and other places.

As John said to me, it is often the role of the public servant to obfuscate through using overly obtuse and obscure language. In this they follow their political masters.

And Rudd is obfuscating. 

He doesn’t want to say that the major economies forum will do nothing practical about climate change. So he disguises what he really means with a form of words that he is comfortable with and come naturally to him.

And he wants to hide a deeper truth – that the profit system comes before all else, including addressing climate change. If the choice is between profit or fixing global warming Rudd and his mates will choose profit every time.

They will sell the rope to their hangman.

As to all this evasive language,  I prefer English, not some concocted version born of a desire to avoid the truth.

Reports coming out of the MEF since this was written indicate it has committed to targets to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions that will limit temperature rises to only (!) 2 degrees above pre-industrial levels by 2050. 

This includes a targeted 80 percent cut in GHG emissions by industrialised nations by 2050 and 50 percent for industrialising nations. Both China and India have already rejected the 50 percent target.

And get this. There is massive wriggle room about the base year against which reductions are measured – 1990 or later years.   So the targets are meaningless.

Rudd was right. There are no detailed programmatic specificities. Just bullshit.



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Time July 9, 2009 at 4:21 pm

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Comment from Arjay
Time July 9, 2009 at 8:14 pm

Kevin wants more detail in programs.When you don’t have much substance you baffle your opponents with a thesaurus.It sent the German Translators into a tailspin.Kevin got the attention he sought.

The Cliche Kid is tough and strong ,the cliche kid just can’t go wrong,the cliche kid eats me too bars.And that is the sum of his song.

Comment from Elliot
Time July 16, 2009 at 12:35 am

What about a target fot 2010? 2011? 2012? 2013? All bullshit unless put in a political timeframe.

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