Michael Burrill

About Michael Burrill

Michael Burrill is a 24-year-old writer and contrarian. His hobbies include cheap Australian lager and existential dread.

Current Affairs Wrap: Terrorists, Triggs and Turnbull…oh and Tone

According to Mike Burrill’s #CurrentAffairsWrap, “Terrorists!, Terrorists!, Terrorists!,” the Forgotten Children report a political stitch up and Turnbull remaining Turnbull.

 

Soon-to-be-knocked-off barnacle Tony Abbott has desperately delved more deeply into the Lambie/Bernardi playbook this week. Surrounded by Australian flags, Tone ridiculously told immigrants to “be as tolerant of others as we are of them” and claimed, “we will never sacrifice our freedoms in order to defend them but we will not let our enemies exploit our decency either.” According to double speak translator this basically equates to “We will never sacrifice our freedom, but we must sacrifice our freedom because TERRORISTS!, TERRORISTS!, TERRORISTS!”. T further outlined his strongly-held commitment to truly combating extremism at home and abroad by outlining plans to revoke citizenship to terrorists with duel citizenship (or rather, whoever the government chooses to define as such) and effectively outsource the problem of radicalisation within our society. Sure it might lead to suffering in other countries, but hey, we can just bomb them and call it a humanitarian mission if need be. Tone also put the Islamic community at ease by saying, “I’ve often heard western leaders describe Islam as a ‘religion of peace’, I wish more Muslim leaders would say that more often, and mean it.” …because what better way to bring them on board than subtly (well it’s more a failed attempt at subtlety, but then I have this double speak translator handy) implying that Muslims are a separate untrustworthy group from other Australians, despite Muslim leaders repeatedly condemning acts of violence committed in their religions name.

Despite outrage over alleged inducements offered to Gillian Triggs for her resignation, and even a referral to the AFP by the opposition, Tone stuck to his guns, labelling her report on children in detention a “political stitch up” which rather unfortunately for him evokes images of the stitched up lips of desperate asylum seekers…maybe that’s just me though. If T stubbornly cannot accept the findings of the Human Rights Commission, then surely news that the immigration department is currently investigating 44 cases of alleged sexual abuse in detention centres – or Amnesty International’s condemnation of children in detention in their 2015 State Of The World’s Human Rights report – may provide him with other sources. Tone may have been better just accepting the report’s findings and reaffirming his government’s commitment to removing children from detention; now he just looks desperate and cruel. Sure, people like me would point out his government only agreed to remove children from detention to “induce,” as it could be described, a crossbench senator to pass immigration laws either way, but at least Tone wouldn’t have looked so obviously like a man lamely lashing out in all directions in an attempt to escape the inevitable.

And that inevitable end looms ever large as Malcolm Turnbull continued his obvious “I’m not Abbott” routine, refusing to criticize Gillian Triggs, saying, “I’ve known Gillian Triggs for many years. She’s a very distinguished international legal academic.” Inside the Liberal Party, some MP’s claim Turnbull has the numbers for a leadership challenge, while members of the federal executive have railed against “a culture of financial secrecy.” For all the much highlighted dysfunction in the Labor Party in recent times, the Liberal party seems just as dysfunctional. I don’t point this out as matter of point scoring, just as a sad indictment of the state of our democracy. It’s really no wonder some people (Stanky Johnny included) believe the world’s political elite are reptilian humanoids from the Alpha Draconis system. Sure it’s ridiculous, but it must be slightly less depressing than accepting we’ve bestowed honour and power upon a profession that seems to favour liars, narcissists and swindlers; and I can’t deny that sometimes the idea of shapeshifting blood suckers who feed off human misery seems to a very apt description of politicians.

 

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