#AusPol winners and losers: Who ate the food in the shared cabinet?

Approx Reading Time-11Policy hipsterism, abuse of time travel and the real meaning of Christmas wallpapered the walls of AusPol this week. So who were the winners?


Every Friday, The Big Smoke pulls out the chalkboard in an attempt to chart the week’s winners and losers in the game of Australian politics. (It should be noted: in the case of politics, one cannot chart a true winner or loser, but fuck it, we’re doing it anyway.) How did our favourites fair this week?



Josh Frydenberg: for refuting the age of “post-truth” with some old fashioned political doubletalk. Well, doubletalk would be a step into the teethy mouth of assumption, as “doubletalk” would mean he’d have to have said one thing, and meant another. Whereas Joshua said one thing, went to bed, awoke the next morning, and refuted that he said it. Now one can assume politicians go on benders like the rest of us, I totally get it. You crack open a new case of legislation, you get roped in with the caveat “oh, just one policy, I’ve got work tomorrow”, and then zang, you wake up with the sun working you over as an entire portfolio lays wasted at your feet. Emissions trading scheme? What emissions trading scheme?

Totally relatable.

However, the takeaway lesson here (other than don’t drink and govern) is that just because everyone else is doing it, that doesn’t mean you have to do it. With the cool kids of the political world all into the rad trend of “post-truth”, it’s refreshing to see a young pollie follow his own star, and stick to tradition: obvious political bullshit.

Frydenberg, you sweet ministerial hipster, you.



Rod Culleton: for climbing Everest. Becoming the most unchained, fruit-looped member of the 2016 Senate is no mean feat. Raging Rod (and I hope one day he tries to gain a compliment from someone, so I can use the title “Fishing Rod” lol) has achieved something gaudy for the species. Clamouring his way to the highest peak of abject insanity is worthy of the newsreels, and frankly, move over, corpse of Sir Hillary, for you’ve been bested. Culleton has climbed Everest whilst having a pick-axe being continually swung by his red-headed Tenzing from Ipswich, powered by nothing more than grit, boldness and an innate talent for making a bad situation worse.

Hyperbole aside, he’s made Pauline Hanson moderate, and amazingly the victim the populace roots for in this One Nation knife fight, all while battling the High Court with his other hand.

What a talent.


Also on The Big Smoke



Us: for assuming we have nothing in common with our Prime Minister. Yes, we the unwashed, unconvinced masses, those who forget, due to his vast private wealth – nay, his decisions that are furthering the gap between those who have and have not – that our PM is a person, and thusly lose all hope of shared ground with the elite.

But, this week, this happened.

Gazing further into this masterpiece, we feel loss. Loss that we’ve all felt, that feeling of wanting something but seeing it dashed; that one thing that’d make our morning grand, but alas, all is lost. One could argue that the latté represents the hope of the electorate, smashed to a thousand pieces, as we weep for the milk spilt upon the Senate floor.

That or he just dropped coffee. Surely he would have got a replacement. Guys?


Barnaby Joyce: for refusing the job that no-one in their right mind would want him to actually take. This is our deputy PM, the sub-teacher the class gets rowdy with before the teacher out-rowdies the rowdies – cue then the awkward pall that descends on the classroom, as roles are reversed and student becomes teacher, and vice-versa.

Mr Joyce flatly refused any chance of one day sitting in the top chair, inferring that a shared respect was the primary reason why. That and a shared interest in botany and water infrastructure. Awesome. God forbid anyone falls arse-backwards into a dinner engagement at Kiribili for the next x years. Tell them about water tables, Malcolm. Oh, Barnaby, everyone’s heard that story. You tell it.

Joyce concluded the piece by saying that the status quo makes the country work, and he wouldn’t under any means whatsoever risk that. Which sounds dangerously close to Well, I didn’t want to marry him anyway; it’s for the best.

Oh, Heathcliff.


Also on The Big Smoke


The “Golden Emerson” – awarded to those who waste everyone’s time with complete verbal tosh, goes to:

Malcolm Turnbull: for going back in time to plant this lesson in 2010, just so he could utter this tripe to the present-day audience. Benefit of hindsight and all that, but still, awkies:


The “Bushie” – the George W Bush commemorative plaque to honour outstanding performance in the field of trumpeted “fact”, goes to:

Pauline Hanson: for being imbued with a level of Christmas spirit that Charles Dickens would be proud of. Hopefully she won’t be visited by the ghost of Chrimbo Future or surely Tiny Tim on Manus will go wanting. Exclusive of Muslims is not how Christmas works, Pauline.


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