1. Same sex marriage campaign goes ape
All day yesterday I heard that a same-sex marriage campaigner planted one on Tony Abbott, with Abbott and all and sundry saying it’s emblematic of how the Yes campaign is being prosecuted.
Turns out that 38-year-old Hobart DJ Astro ‘Funknukl’ Labe reckons:
he is a lone anarchist that “felt the need to headbutt Tony Abbott because I didn’t think it was an opportunity I’d get again”.
As you do!
He’d had a few, and now he’s sober he reckons it had “nothing whatsoever to do with marriage equality.”
However, it plays into the framing of the No campaign, as does the children’s party contractor, Madlin Sims, who sacked one of her entertainers known only as Madeline who put a frame on her private Facebook profile picture that said “it’s OK to vote no”.
Sims reckons it was homophobic “hate speech”, which it wasn’t. Any way she didn’t need to make a public fuss about it if she did not want her business linked with the entertainer’s views. She had the option of simply not giving her more work.
Phil Coorey reckons the Noes have quickly claimed victimhood. How many noticed that a 14-year-old Dubbo girl was threatened with death after supporting same-sex marriage, a Burnie cafe was threatened with arson, and police had to evacuate AFL HQ and cordon off the street when they made their views known?
The Conversation has an Explainer: what legal benefits do married couples have that de facto couples do not?
Frank Bongiorno thinks On marriage equality, Australia’s progressive instincts have been crushed by political failure.
He says our leaders trail public opinion, which is dangerous for our democracy.
In short, it helps generate the kind of disaffection that the surveys tell us is now increasingly characteristic of Australian democracy. We come to believe that what is best about our country exists despite rather than because of their political system.
- produces national stroppiness and erodes trust and confidence. In short, it helps generate the kind of disaffection that the surveys tell us is now increasingly characteristic of Australian democracy.
This week as the ABS forms appeared in leteer boxes, so did a pamphlet warning darkly that gay marriage will impact schools, free speech and religions and charities. Our leaders are taking us backwards, rather than simply legislating the rights of a minority accepted by the majority.
2. Malcolm Roberts in trouble
One Nation Senator Malcolm Roberts was a citizen of the United Kingdom at the time of his nomination, the High Court has found. And it seems he knew it.
When he tried to send an email to British authorities with the subject line “Am I still a British citizen?” before the election (emphasis added) he gave himself away. And his attempts to resolve the matter were less than impressive.
It’s for the full bench to decide, but attention has moved to who might replace him. The money seems to be on Pauline Hanson’s sister. There’s some feeling that Pauline won’t want Roberts back. He’s too much competition for the limelight.
3. Keeping up with Trump
Last weekend my attention was drawn to the efforts of an American called Matt Kiser, who runs a site What the F**** Just Happened Today, which gives a blow-by-blow account of what Trump is up to, tweets and all.
That was Day 239: Sick and demented. Day 245 was not quite so interesting.
This week we have had “Rocket Man” “on a suicide mission” calling the other bloke a “mentally deranged US dotard” as the war of words reaches new heights, with one threatening to explode an H-bomb over the Pacific and the other threatening to wipe him and his regime from the face of the earth.
My informant last weekend also had a great site listing what Americans believe, like only around half know where New York is. It wasn’t this one, where we find that a quarter believe the sun goes around the earth and more than three-quarters of Americans believe there are indisputable evidences that aliens have already visited our planet. Or this one, where 29 percent of Americans think that an armed revolution in order to protect liberties might be necessary in the next few years.
Then there is this image of how they think of the world:
4. New Zealand goes to the polls
It looks as though New Zealanders will wake up with the same prime minister when the go to the polls. There is a chance that the “Jacinda effect” will put Labour’s Jacinda Ardern in a position where she can form a coalition with basically conservative Winston Peters and his New Zealand First. Peters has worked with Labour before.
For us, however, it is good to know that when you have decent people in politics they can conduct a campaign mainly on policies. On this side of the ditch Malcolm Turnbull has chosen a different path.
Germany is also showing that elections can be reasonably civil, if a little boring. I’ll do that one in a separate post.