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Abbott thinks Australians are an unmotivated lot.


I sat and watched Abbott’s NPC ‘vision’ speech yesterday. I laughed so hard I nominated the speech for ‘best comic performance by a politician’. It promised blue skies and sunshine. Right after he decimates the nation.

Abbott’s vision for Australia, like his thinking, is not real. He claims that there will be significant problems in the future re aging and superannuation and roads and infrastructure and services. But he reckons that you don’t have to worry about those now! Wait till the shit hits the fan he said. Well he didn’t say that, but that is what he meant. No need to spend money on something that is not happening now.

Really Tony? Well under the Howard Govt, school funding was dramatically shaken up. So much so that students in public schools where being disillusioned by the schools not having the funds to conduct the education curriculum. Further, students where reporting ill from the effects such as mould, damp, and even gas heaters. And with the temperatures around the globe rising, air conditioning is now considered a must have. Why would that be if there was no climate change Mr Abbott?

The other thing is schools are not just buildings were you put children in to teach, but they are a WORKPLACE for all the teachers at that school. And yet, apparently they are meant to ignore the fact that their workplaces suck and maintain high academic standards. Yet Abbott again attacked the BER project which provided EVERY school funding to upgrade flagging infrastructure. The coalition thought this a waste of money. They wanted public schools to become degraded and fall into ruins. That way they can totally stop funding them. And with the money you can save, you can buy dentists! Well. Eventually. Maybe in 50 years or so.

Abbott went on arguing that the NBN was a failure because it was a plan drafted on a napkin. Really? Ever heard of Microsoft Mr Abbott? Well this guy called Bill Gates was flying to meet IBM executives when he suddenly realised that he did not have an operating system to sell them. So on a napkin, he drafted what became known as DOS. Other things done on a napkin or on other pieces of whatever you can find include:

The Napkin Deal was an agreement between tobacco industry lobbyists and political influentials that altered the basics of tort law in California for almost ten years.

On September 10, 1987, California Assembly Speaker Willie Brown (a Democrat from San Francisco), who had by the end of the 1988 election cycle received $125,900 in campaign contributions from the tobacco industry, hosted a dinner meeting at Frank Fat’s, a Sacramento restaurant popular with influential figures from the state Capitol. Brown invited trial lawyers, representatives of the California Medical Association and insurance companies to work out a tort reform agreement that would accommodate the interests of all involved and avoid an expensive ballot initiative battle. They were joined by lobbyists from the tobacco industry. Public health and consumer groups were excluded from the dinner.


The following reprinted from Uncle John’s Giant 10th Anniversary Bathroom Reader.

Got an idea but no paper to write it down? Don’t worry, just do what
these people did and grab whatever’s in front of you and start scribbling:

Written on: A cocktail napkin
By: Rollin King and Herb Kelleher
The Story: Kelleher was a lawyer. King was a banker and
pilot who ran a small charter airline. In 1966, they had a drink at a
San Antonio bar. Conversation led to an idea for an airline that would
provide short intrastate flights at a low cost. They mapped out routes
and a business strategy on a cocktail napkin. Looking at the notes on
the napkin, Kelleher said, “Rollin, you’re crazy, let’s do it,”
and Southwest Airline was born.

[editor’s note: This issue of the Bathroom Reader was printed in 1997.
In 2007, in an interview with The
Dallas Morning News
, Rollin King admitted that the napkin story was
“a hell of a story” but not true]

Written on: Toilet paper
By: Richard Berry
The Story: Berry, an R&B performer, was at a club
in 1957 when he heard a song with a Latin beat that he liked. He went
into the men’s room, pulled off some toilet paper, and wrote down the
lyrics to “Louie, Louie.”

Written on: The back of a grocery bill
By: W.C. Fields
The Story: In 1940 Fields needed money quickly. He scribbled
down a plot idea on some paper he found in his pocket, and sold it to
Universal Studios for $25,000. Ironically, the plot was about Fields trying
to sell an outrageous script to a movie studio. It became his last film,
Never Give a Sucker an Even Break (1941). Fields received screenplay
credit as Otis Criblecoblis.

Written on: The back of a letter
By: Francis Scott Key
The Story: In 1814 Key, a lawyer, went out to the British
fleet in Chesapeake Bay to plead for the release of a prisoner. The British
agreed, but since Key had arrived as they were preparing to attack, they
detained him and his party until the battle was over. From this vantage
point Key watched the bombardment, and “by the dawn’s early light”
saw that “our flag was still there.” He was so inspired that
he wrote the lyrics to “The Star Spangled Banner” on the only
paper he had, a letter he’d stuck in his pocket.

Written on: A cocktail napkin
By: Arthur Laffer
The Story: In Sept 1974, Arthur Laffer (professor of
business economics at USC) had a drink at a Washington, D.C. restaurant
with his friend Donald Rumsfeld (then an advisor to President Gerald Ford).
The conversation was about the economy, taxes, and what to do about recession.
Laffer moved his wine glass, took the cocktail napkin, and drew a simple
graph to illustrate his idea that at some point, increased taxes result
in decreased revenues. The graph, known as the “Laffer Curve,”
later became the basis for President Reagan’s “trickle-down”

Written on: A napkin
By: Roger Christian and Jan Berry
The Story: In the early 1960s Roger Christian, one of
the top DJs in Los Angeles, co-wrote many of Jan and Dean’s hits with
Jan Berry. One night he and Jan were at an all-night diner and Christian
began scribbling the lyrics to a new song, “Honolulu Lulu,”
on a napkin. When they left the restaurant, Jan said, “Give me the
napkin … I’ll go to the studio and work out the arrangements.”
“I don’t have it,” Christian replied. Then they realized they’d
left the napkin on the table. They rushed back in … but the waitress
had already thrown it away. They tried to reconstruct the song but couldn’t.
So the two tired collaborators went behind the diner and sorted through
garbage in the dumpster until 4 a.m., when they finally found their song.
It was worth the search. “Honolulu Lulu” made it to #11 on the
national charts.

Written on: The back of an envelope
By: Abraham Lincoln
The Story: On his way to Gettysburg to commemorate the
battle there, Lincoln jotted down his most famous speech – the Gettysburg
Address – on an envelope. Actually, that was just a myth. Several drafts
of the speech have been discovered – one of which was written in the White
House on executive stationery.

That’s right Tony! The most famous speech in political history in the USA was redrafted on a back of an envelope. You see, its not what the idea is written on that makes it good or bad. You seem to think its all about the letter head. Mind you, you would think Tony Abbott would have chatted to his hero John Howard about deals you draft on coasters. How is Peter Costello these days?

But the thing that got my goat was this pure unadulterated look into the thinking of one Tony Abbott. 

In 2004, the then leader of the Labor Party often spoke of the ladder of opportunity. It was a nice metaphor, albeit one recycled from conservative leaders such as Winston Churchill. Yes, government can build ladders but it takes motivated people actually to climb them.

Do you see Australia? Tony Abbott likes the metaphor, but why bother building these ladders when he claims Australians are too lazy to bother to use them. To Abbott, and to his coalition horde, any money spent on such things like equality and fairness and such is just a waste as Aussies are unworthy. Dental health? Unworthy. Better education system? Unworthy. A cleaner environment? Unworthy. Better broadband? Unworthy. A National Disability Scheme? Unworthy. Fair wages and work conditions? Unworthy.

Abbott’s vision of Australia, if you ask me, is not worthy.

A. Ghebranious 2012 (All rights reserved)

  1. I would like to write something really good about your post but I’ve no napkin, old envelope, toilet paper or talent. Oh, hang on, I’ll use this:

    Nice work. My biggest concern is Tony may actually become Prime Minister of this nation, which may be similar to a natural disaster, without the contribution to GDP. However, it would give us all something to discuss and it wouldn’t last long, (I hope).

  2. Bilko permalink

    Another good spray, linked with Grog’s comments on the drum, wraps up Abbott’s headland banger of a speech. It is a pity the journo’s cannot take off their rose tinted glasses and see the real world as Finnigans beaut set of numbers rerun often in PB show.

  3. Geoff permalink

    I hope Tony becomes PM. The country has gone down the toilet since 2007.

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