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Keep socialist blog En Passant going - donate now
If you want to keep a blog that makes the arguments every day against the ravages of capitalism going and keeps alive the flame of democracy and community, make a donation to help cover my costs. And of course keep reading the blog. To donate click here. Keep socialist blog En Passant going. More... (4)

Sprouting sh*t for almost nothing
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My interview Razor Sharp 18 February
Me interviewed by Sharon Firebrace on Razor Sharp on Tuesday 18 February. http://sharonfirebrace.files.wordpress.com/2014/02/18-2-14-john-passant-aust-national-university-g20-meeting-age-of-enttilement-engineers-attack-of-austerity-hardship-on-civilians.mp3 (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. http://sharonfirebrace.com/2014/02/11/john-passant-aust-national-university-canberra-2/ (0)

Razor Sharp 4 February 2014
Me on 4 February 2014 on Razor Sharp with Sharon Firebrace. http://sharonfirebrace.files.wordpress.com/2014/02/4-2-14-john-passant-aust-national-university-canberra-end-of-the-age-of-entitlement-for-the-needy-but-pandering-to-the-lusts-of-the-greedy.mp3 (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
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Sick kids and paying upfront

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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. http://sharonfirebrace.com/2013/12/03/john-passant-australian-national-university-8/ (0)

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Tony Abbott and Prince Philip: beknighted and benighted

Whom the gods would destroy, they first make mad.

Prometheus in The Masque of Pandora (1875) by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

 

The decision of Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott to make Prince Philip a knight is a masterstroke.

Like all royals, Philip is a parasite, a hangover from medieval times and the result of the incomplete English revolution. He is also racist, stupid, sexist, rude, idiotic and an elitist.

What a day too for the political genius Tony Abbott to announce yet another meaningless title for the man who has 33 of them already. Thirty three may be an overestimate. Or an underestimate. Who’d bother counting when the list includes names like  Extraordinary Commander of the Order of Military Merit or Lord High Admiral of the United Kingdom? Not to mention Knight Grand Cross with Chain of the Order of the Queen of Sheba.

As Megan Levy notes in the Fairfax media:

Among the more elaborate sounding decorations he has received are the Knight Grand Cross of the Order of the Condor of the Andes, from Bolivia; the Member of the Most Distinguished Order of Izzuddin, from the Maldives; the Knight of the Order of the Elephant, from Denmark; and from Ethiopia, the Knight Grand Cross with Chain of the Order of the Queen of Sheba.

He has also been awarded the Grand Cordon of the Order of Leopold by Belgium; and the Grand Cordon of the National Order of the Leopard by Zaire, which is now the Democratic Republic of the Congo.

So why not add Knight of the Order of Australia to the list of ridiculous titles?

Well, there are a number of reasons. One relates to Abbott’s political acumen or rather lack of it.

On Invasion Day (officially known as Australia Day)  ‘our’ Prime Minister recognises Prince Philip for, let me guess, his services to Aboriginal Australians among others. Here is just one example of that caring sharing approach of the Parasite Prince. He posed this question to Aboriginal leader William Brin during a visit to the Aboriginal Cultural Park in Queensland, 2002. ‘Do you still throw spears at each other?’ Yep, a totally appropriate award on this most racist of days.

Not only that but the knighthood, and the Englishness of its recipient, undermines the theme of ultra-patriotism and ‘Australianness’ the bourgeois have manufactured around Invasion Day in the last few decades as a distraction from their neoliberal attacks.

The gaffes of the Parasite Prince are well known. The Independent listed 90 of them on his 90th birthday. Of course they aren’t gaffes. They reflect the bigoted, biased, blinkered views of the British (and Australian) elite about themselves and the rest of us, their ‘inferiors.’

 

Abbott, by appointing the parasite Prince as a knight of the order of Australia, also shows how he too is a member of the elite, out of touch with ordinary Australians who not only overwhelmingly want a Republic but also despise Philip. Even his own side, people like Adam Giles, conservative Chief Minister of the Northern Territory, have ridiculed the knighthood, saying that it was Australia Day, ‘we’re not a bunch of tossers, let’s get it right.’

About the only people Abbott will keep happy with this are the Monarchists. They will be rattling their pearls and drinking their top shelf port or whisky to celebrate, all 3 of them.  Speaking of port, unlike Menzies, Abbott doesn’t drink port. So rather than becoming Lord of the Cinque Ports he is perhaps aiming to become Lord of the Sank Beers.

I think Abbott knows that politically he is a dead man walking and has decided to release his inner reactionary. That may well explain the enquiry into workplace relations (code for bringing back the highly unpopular vote losing Work Choices) which at least most of the ruling class want. But knighthhoods, and one for Philistine Phil? Seriously? No sensible member of the Australian ruling class sees that as in any way desirable or defensible and it destroys the ‘we are all in this Budget fixing together’ lie they are trying to promulgate. This latest blunder, one of such magnitude, shows how isolated from and toxic to the public Abbott is and may see him soon rolled. How much longer can the Liberals hang on to and with this buffoon? How much longer will the ruling class put up with their idiot? Not much longer I suspect.

That won’t end the nightmare, just replace one bad dream with another. Our own actions on the streets and in our workplaces (demos and strikes) in defending jobs, wages, conditions and public services, can end the nightmare of reaction social, economic and political reaction we are suffering.

 

 

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Comments

Comment from Kay
Time January 27, 2015 at 11:24 am

For once we are agreement.

As you know, I tend to support the Libs over Labor, but this brainsnap of Abbott has totally floored me! Once again I have emailed the Liberal Party (I am NOT a member!) expressing my views about the latest idiocy of Abbott! I think he is on a crusade to alienate almost all usually-Liberal voters, and ensure he leads a one-term government! But, no doubt, when he loses in 2016 he hopes his beloved Queen will knight him – Sir Tony! After all, surely she sees he deserves it after granting yet another title to her appalling husband! But, don’t forget, Philip is ostensibly a Greek.

Comment from Lorikeet
Time January 27, 2015 at 12:42 pm

I don’t particularly like people knocking the Monarchy, but I think it is important for people to look at this event in the context of other dreadful ideas that have been floated by Tony Abbott in the last 2 or so weeks, in the lead up to state elections in Queensland and NSW.

1. Medicare Rebate.
2. Plan to bypass Senate on Education reforms.
3. Plan to reduce funding to Welfare Agencies by an enormous amount (10 digit figure).
4. Plan to reduce minimum wage, remove penalty rates and inflict other attacks on workers.

This is certainly in keeping with a prediction I made prior to the 2013 federal election: that the UN has blown the whistle on Labor, giving them a temporary “time out” possibly lasting only one term, because things were getting too hot with the voting public.

Now it seems that both state and federal governments could be “one term wonders” for the Coalition and LNP, a situation I consider to be deliberately orchestrated, with Tony Abbott certainly helping out in a big way towards the cutting of Premier Campbell Newman’s and his own throat.

Newman has also helped the process along by saying if we don’t vote for his candidates, we will miss out on infrastructure. Some consider this to be a form of blackmail.

At the NSA state forum, it seemed clear that a large section of the audience no longer trusted either Labor or the LNP. Hence the Greens’ representative received many vigorous rounds of applause.

This would also concur with a previous prediction of mine that the Coalition and Labor plan to eventually pass the ball to the Greens. This opinion is certainly borne out by the interaction of UN bankers, global unions and Greens ideologies.

The Greens continue to adopt some of the better policies held by the Centre of politics in to order to push them out of contention (Katter’s Australian Party, Democratic Labour Party, and to some extent, Palmer’s United Party).

To my knowledge, the Queen’s husband was indeed originally Prince Philip of Greece.

I think Tony Abbott was only made Prime Minister to remove Labor from office, and that possibly Malcolm Turnbull will be taking over shortly. There are certainly calls to get rid of Tony Abbott, but I believe he has only been doing as his global masters demand.

Comment from Glen
Time January 27, 2015 at 3:22 pm

Tony actually wants to be elevated to the House of Lords – Lord Tony of Oz, alongside Lord Downer of Baghdad – that’s the bloke who was in charge of the Australian Wheat Board, but didn’t know they were paying money to Saddam Hussein’s regime. Apparently the Lord Downer used to like to dress in fishnet stockings from time to time. Are these the sorts of leaders that modern thinking Liberals want to represent them ?

Comment from Glen
Time January 27, 2015 at 3:25 pm

Abbott won the leadership of the party by only 1 vote

Comment from Ross
Time January 27, 2015 at 10:09 pm

Lorikeet, the Monarchy are sugary sweet on the outside and totally ruthless in their private scheming.

For Rupert Murdoch to want Abbott to go means he is not being ruthless enough to meet the expectations of our corporate elites. I think Malcolm Turnbull will be far worse than Abbott.

There is something more than Abbott’s clumsy, awkward language and demeanour that irks our elites like Murdoch. Either Abbott is perceived to be not ruthless enough or not eloquent enough to sell us the nasty end of the pine apple. It is probably both. Turnbull is smart enough to sell us a shit sandwich with the pine apple inside.

Here is what Dr Paul Craig Roberts thinks of this rotten system. http://www.globalresearch.ca/freedom-where-are-you-the-fed-and-the-ecb-have-taken-the-west-back-to-the-days-when-a-handful-of-aristocrats-owned-everything/5427052

Comment from Peter Johnson
Time January 28, 2015 at 2:16 pm

The sooner ‘Phil of the Greeks’ gets ‘promoted’ to a Higher Realm [not of this earth] the better I suggest. I do not think that his ‘claims to fame’ will have much truck with the heavenly hosts?! Queen Elizabeth II is titled, among others, as ‘The Defender of the Faith’ – which one assumes is the faith of ‘that radical’ Jesus Christ. Perhaps she could say a few public words in support of or in opposition to the more controversial ‘politically correct’ proposed definitions of marriage and the rights of the child to be brought up by a male father and a female mother rather than the alternatives currently bandied about in the media as ‘enlightenment’. Does she think that traditional definitions of, and compositions of ‘normal’ marriage across cultures and religions are ‘out of step’ and God should pronounce through the Duke or Prince Charles the updated versions on family composition. Perhaps we should reintroduce theocracy rather than ecclesiocracy? True theocracy is not about the priests, imams or whatnot being the ruler but rather the civil leader believed to have a personal connection with the civilization’s religion or belief. For example, Moses led the Israelites, and Muhammad ruled the early Muslims. Those who are atheists may wish to cogitate on the past glories and the success of the notion of equality of rule dispensed by the likes of atheists Stalin, Hitler, Pol Pot et al or if you have a belief about a ‘higher power’ why not ‘chuck up’ a sincere pray about these issues and see what you get? CAUTION: Don’t follow the USA who have retained “In God We Trust” on some of their banknotes but appear to have ‘lost the plot a bit’. Gigantic expenditure on weapons systems appear more trusting in firepower and/or ‘innovative’ ‘sexed-up’ intelligence aka ‘the proof of Sadam’s weapons of mass destruction in Iraq to justify an apparent belief that God often needs a judicious bit of help to counter ‘all the enemies of the United States of whom God in all His wisdom hates’ – to paraphrase a wonderful quote by Michael Leunig Australian cartoonist/commentator.

Comment from John
Time January 28, 2015 at 3:29 pm

Yes, and a Turnbull supporter was sick and couldn’t attend. The Abbott side wouldn’t give a proxy.

Comment from Lorikeet
Time January 28, 2015 at 6:59 pm

I think Ross is correct in believing that Malcolm Turnbull will send the nation much further down the gurgler than Tony Abbott. He is a merchant banker who supports an Emissions Trading Scheme, which is highly likely to sell Australia out on the world stage. Tony Abbott was only put in the top job because he opposed a Carbon Tax.

From my observation of the British Royal Family and the Austerity Pope, both are working for global enemies our national sovereignty.

I think Rupert Murdoch has just weighed in on the latest move to kneecap the Coalition in NSW and Queensland. Capitalists have everything to gain from globalisation, which is strongly supported by both of the major parties.

Labor moves the global agenda along more quickly than the Coalition through massive borrowing, signing more international agreements to empower other nations, and sending a representative of the ACTU to participate with a global union body in flattening wages.

Comment from Kay
Time January 29, 2015 at 8:18 am

Peter

I think followers of religions and their leaders have slaughtered significantly more people than atheists – and it continues today! But they continue to prosecute the totally fallacious connection between Hitler, Stalin & Pol Pot and atheism in their pathetic attempts to justify their antiquated beliefs.

See the link below:

https://richarddawkins.net/2014/10/the-atheist-atrocities-fallacy-hitler-stalin-pol-pot/

Comment from Kay
Time January 29, 2015 at 8:20 am

Lorikeet

One thing for sure – you never stop with all your conspiracy theory crap!! How about sheer incompetence being the reason most governments fall? That is obvious to all but you, it seems.

Comment from Ross
Time January 29, 2015 at 8:15 pm

Kay, a note on your attacking Lorikeet over “conspiracy crap”.

Has it ever occurred to you that a group of extremely rich people might get together and have a plan to become even more rich and powerful at our expense ?

Kay you are the fool because you don’t understand this system even at a very basic level.

They create even your inflation money from nothing as debt, depreciating your currency and getting you to repay principal + interest. You are losing out on 3 levels. Why do you think the world is entrapped by so much debt. This is why Greek debt is fallacious.

Comment from John
Time January 29, 2015 at 8:20 pm

I agree with Kay. And Greek debt isn’t fallacious. It is very real for the 25% unemployed, the pensioners whose pensions have been cut 50% and the workers who have had their wages cut by the same amount.

Comment from Ross
Time January 29, 2015 at 8:44 pm

John, if you agree the debt is justified morally and has a sound economic basis, this means you agree with the oppressive banking system. Only 8% of QE (money printing) trickles down to the real economy, the rest blows up the share and derivatives market.

How can you justify inflation being expressed as debt ?

Comment from Kay
Time January 30, 2015 at 11:24 am

Ross

Of course, human beings try to become more rich and powerful – often at the expense of others. That is basic human nature. And sometimes these people even work with other people to improve their outcomes. No headline news there!

But this constant narrative about some evil puppet-masters hiding in the UN and orchestrating every political and financial outcome throughout the world in accordance with some Master Plan – well, if I read it in a novel I would laugh out loud! It is sad that Lorikeet happily reverts to this narrative in just about every comment she makes on every blog. I thought she was more intelligent than that. She just makes herself a laughing stock by such conspiracy theory crap. But I guess you think along the same lines?

Comment from Lorikeet
Time January 30, 2015 at 12:52 pm

Don’t worry, Kay is just angry because Tony Abbott has been told to deliberately kneecap the Coalition in Queensland, and has been doing an excellent job. Thumbs up to that! Methinks the penny is starting to drop. Kay did start out by saying she had been “floored”.

I don’t think Greek debt is fallacious at all. I don’t think John has said debt is morally justified, unless I missed it somewhere. The formation of economic unions seems to be about a flattening of individual economies and money hungry bankers manipulating everything in their own favour. This is supported by the superannuation industry, shares market and big companies kneecapping small business and workers, while being allowed to engage in income tax evasion, leaving individual governments without money to look after the poor. When they take manufacturing offshore, they clobber the locals while enslaving workers elsewhere to line their own pockets, and then line them again when consumers are charged ridiculous prices for inferior goods.

We don’t need this happening in Australia, so we need to get rid of Labor and Coalition, because now they seem to be ready to pass power to the Greens.
In electorates where only those 3 parties are running in Queensland, lots of people are going to vote for Greens! This includes many older people.

The good news is that the seniors’ body I mentioned previously has decided to give all parties a fair go at their pre-election forum in NSW, after lobbying by myself and others for a more democratic process.

Katter’s Australian Party is now suing the LNP in Queensland for deliberately lying to the public about where KAP preferences are going, along with other false speculation regarding outcomes.

Comment from Lorikeet
Time January 30, 2015 at 8:48 pm

In case Kay is not aware, out of Australia’s 40 most wealthy people, only Andrew “Twiggy” Forrest has a benevolent plan to redistribute a chunk of his wealth to the less fortunate. The rest are evading taxation while the disadvantaged freeze in the streets. Instead of causing them more personal hardship by increasing the percentage and scope of the GST while making welfare cuts, the federal government needs to hit the super wealthy to refill its coffers.

Comment from Lorikeet
Time January 30, 2015 at 8:57 pm

Once again, labelling anyone a “conspiracy theorist” is a very weak excuse for an argument. For Kay’s information, in the past I have won 2 writer’s awards. Unfortunately I do not have the time or a piece of paper large enough to prepare a suitable spreadsheet the size of a suburban backyard which would easily prove the case that we are being inexorably moved towards a Global Corporate Neo-Communist Regime.

I look forward to a thousand apologies at a later date, while copious quantities of egg drip off lots of people’s faces.

Comment from John
Time January 31, 2015 at 5:26 am

I wonder what Andrew Forrest’s companies pay in tax? Laura Tingle in the Financial Review said something very interesting on that in 2011 from memory.

Comment from Lorikeet
Time January 31, 2015 at 7:07 am

John, to clarify, the main point I was making was that I heard that Andrew Forrest is the only super rich person with a benevolent plan. No doubt he is able to evade tax like the other super rich people, who only want to help themselves to more while ordinary people suffer. I was just saying his agenda is a little better than the other 39 out of 40. I support the ATO cracking down on the entire 40.

Comment from Kay
Time January 31, 2015 at 8:40 am

Lorikeet

I know you will never change your view – it’s all some big conspiracy directed by some evil UN-based puppet master.

Abbott has not been “told to deliberately kneecap the Coalition in Queensland”. He has actually achieved that outcome for sure, but through sheer stupidity and self-indulgence! You don’t need conspiracy theories to explain world events. Basic human greed, intolerance, human frailties, and sheer stupidity are quite sufficient to explain the brutality, craziness and unfairness that exist everywhere, including in Australia.

And yes, I do want Abbott replaced by someone who is more in tune with voter sentiment! Unfortunately, the perpetually unpopular Abbott has not grown into the job of PM. He was successful as Opposition Leader, but has not transited out of that mentality, and has become self-indulgent and totally deluded.