#AusPol winners and losers: Who paid the penalty (rate) this week?

Approx Reading Time-11A Webster’s worthy dose of doublespeak, the re-emergence of the colour line, and a musical interlude all featured in #AusPol this week. But who won? Well…




Every Friday, your trusty commentators at The Big Smoke review the most lauded plays in the game of Australian politics from the week previous. Passionate? Unquestionably. Conniving? Undoubtedly. But it’s not about that. Headlines need to be made and an audience needs to be entertained. So, are you not entertained?

We know we’re not.



Eric Abetz, for having his cake, eating it too, and throwing out the rainbow plate it sat on.

Eric Abetz wrote the book on political doublespeak, then he fought the book, because he thought it spoke shit about him. Abetz has previously railed against 18C, saying the “sort of industry of taking offence at everything has gone far too far within our society”, and took umbrage with the appearance of a rainbow flag on a parliament building this week, claiming that seeing it proudly flying in the breeze may “upset his staff”.



Damian Drum, for being the next George Christensen (will make a cracking whip).

The outgoing George Christensen was ideal as a whip, as he was a Doctor Phil truth bomb to the aphorism that “bullies never prosper”. It’s safe to imagine those fellow pupils George harassed during his schoolyard days would be emboldened as adults to see that while they’ve changed, he hasn’t. But, it matters not, as the reign of George XXL is beyond us – George handing over the whip duties, and the actual whip (yes, it actually exists), to Nat MP Damian Drum.

Best of British to you, Damian. Just as a quick aside, the last time a drum combined with a whip, this happened:

No pressure.


Also on The Big Smoke



The Senate Estimates Committee, for slipping to fossilised racist auspices.

It’s safe to say that we’re all familiar with Barnaby Joyce’s little episode of parliamentary show and tell. Really familiar. Like, the house you were born in familiar. The one where the walls close in when you realise you are still here at 31 and your nan is no longer excited to hear your voice, and your friends are suddenly always busy. That familiar. Anyway, apparently, that pickle was in good taste, as everyone had a good chortle, and a headline, and a yell; “trolololol”, “Oh, that Barnaby”, etc. However, it seems that joke is passé, as the leader of the Greens, Richard di Natale, found out when he attempted to bring in a lump of coral to the Senate estimates inquiry.

Now, I ask you, what is wrong with this picture?


Kids. Preferring something purely because of its colour, whatever that colour may be, is wrong.


Scott Morrison, for bringing the nation into a recession of “fucks”, despite a personal, untouched stockpile of.

Days after steering us away from the gorge of recession, ScoMo has seemingly decided to go the full Lady Godiva route, rolling around the corridors of power, bullocking out on his high horse, brazenly showing the amount of fucks he has to give to those who disagree with the economic power of his political staff. This was all present in his recent appearance on Sky News, in response to Eric Abetz’s criticism of the penalty rate cuts (now nobody knows how to feel). ScoMo’s response?


Also on The Big Smoke


The “Golden Emerson” is awarded to:

George Brandis, for significantly scything into everyone’s bed time. One would imagine having to front the Senate Estimates Committee is akin to waiting for your walk of shame train on a Sunday morning, combined with pouring the contents of a boiled kettle down the front of your trousers – you’d want the experience over as soon as humanly possible. Enter one George Brandis. Supercilious George (in the naughty chair for the whole Bell Group clusterboink) decided to draw out proceedings with a bout of amnesia interspersed with a bout of shouting, similar to the tough kid at school who figured out that after school detention was an equal inconvenience to the teacher as it was to himself.

It’s late, George. Just. Please. Stop. Talking.



“The Bushie” is awarded to:

The Australian Christian Lobby, for incorrectly using the power of deduction.

As noted by worldly cynic/wife cheatin’ true detective, Martin Hart: “You attach an assumption to a piece of evidence, you start to bend the narrative to support it and prejudice yourself.” And so it goes with the victims of Australia’s first theologically motivated car bomb, the Australian Christian Lobby, as a dissident of their morals and beliefs decided to enact his fiery vengeance. Sort of.

That theory was refuted by the findings of the AFP, who’s commissioner Andrew Colvin said of the “attack”: “We don’t believe his primary motivation was driven to make any particular message or send any signal about the Australian Christian Lobby. We do believe he knew that it was the Australian Christian Lobby but he was not driven by a motivation or an ideology based on anything that the Christian Lobby had done or said.”

*cough cough*


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