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I love a game of table tennis. The little balls. The padded bats. The miniature nets. It is a game of concentration and frustration. Even when you keep your eye on the ball, you got to be careful your opponent has not put on the spin! Let me show you what I mean.


The Coalition try to push the claim that we need to be sending more troops into Afghanistan. And not only troops! But tanks and artillery too! Further they say they don’t trust the defence chief. Apparently the think he is lying about things. Nothing like sowing a little distrust! Apparently this is not politicizing the troops in Afghanistan. Nice serve way Mr Abbott.


The PM lands in Afghanistan. She starts impressively by talking to the troops and is seen posing with the soldiers. It turns out they don’t want tanks and artillery at all. They would like some more engineers and helicopters though as the are not involved in fighting so much as training.  Stephen Smith has a little bit to say on the issue too.   She also mentioned that the idea of sending the troops tanks would be as useful as sending them submarines. She certainly knows how to play the game!The Prime Minister then hops onto a plane and heads off to talks with the head of FIFA in Zürich re our 2022 world cup bid before heading off to meet heads of state at the Asia-Europe conference. She also has time to get on the 7.30 Report and manage to say something that many consider a mistake.

“Foreign policy not my thing, says Gillard”

Well time to change foots and see what the opponent does with the ball.Nice return by the way Ms Gillard. Eventually. I must say the formula one analogy was pretty naif, but maybe that was just me.


Damn.  It’s a long trip to London! While he is watching in flight movies and studying the history of English Politics, he missed out on loads of media opportunities. But that is about change.He lands and is immediately facing a media question as to why he didn’t visit Afghanistan with the PM.Turns out he did not want to get jet lag. Oh dear. Swing and a miss. New service.So in comes the support team. Joe Hockey steps in to lend his boss a hand

Opposition frontbencher Joe Hockey told Sky News that Mr Abbott had already arranged a trip to Afghanistan and Ms Gillard was playing silly games by issuing the invitation.“If Julia Gillard is going to play these sorts of politics on Afghanistan she is not worthy of her role as Prime Minister,” Mr Hockey said.“This is an area where you do not play political games and Julia Gillard is playing a dangerous political game in relation to Tony Abbott’s proposed visit to Afghanistan.“Julia Gillard knows the date has been locked in. It has been in the (books) for some period of time.

Not exactly your best work Joe. But the ball is back in play. Mind you the excuse is reminiscent of the line from Monty Python and the Holy Grail where the French tell King Arthur that they already have one.


The PM arrives at the meeting with those heads of states folks. She really does like those white jackets. She takes Joe’s play and smashes it out of the park.She comments that she managed to go to Afghanistan, then to Zürich, and then get eight hours sleep in before the meeting of the leaders. Vicious PM. Vicious.


Tony Abbott has to play a defensive shot now. He calls the media and he clarifies his statement about the jet-lag. It turns out that he didn’t go not out of disrespect for the soldiers or their family, but because he has a trip being planned! Well that makes sense. Except for one teeny-weeny little detail. According to Joe, Mr Abbott’s trip is already ‘locked in’.


Julia Gillard is not one to miss another chance to lay in the boot. She pounced on the “locked in” comments saying that this is not true.


Tony Abbott accuses the PM of politicizing Afghanistan. He does this by politicizing her Afghanistan trip. Again. Remember he already did that at the start of this game.


Julia Gillard responds by the unbeatable response. “But you started it first!”. An obviously ridiculous statement but again, if you go right back to the start of the game, he actually did.


It’s like watching two children fighting isn’t it? And the media lapped it up! So many had so much to say. Well they opened their mouths a lot. Not sure if they had all that much to say really. It seems the children are not only in the parliament. You can not really blame the media. This is the kind of politics they thrive on. That whole new paradigm stuff is not to their liking. They like it when there are clear differences because they don’t have to do much work finding any. And they have all those fans that are more used to politics like this.

The irony is, the media act as childish as the politicians. And sometimes one has to wonder if there was a story really here or one that was created.

God I love a good game of Ping Pong.

A. Ghebranious          2010             All Rights Reserved

One Comment
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