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Byron Shire
May 11, 2021

Thus Spake Mungo: The grovel-a-thon

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And so back to Mark Latham’s conga line of suck holes – Scott Morrison goes to Washington. The regular obeisance is hardly unexpected, but it is no less embarrassing for that.

Morrison has made it clear that the main purpose of his visit is to schmooze. He will continually tell The Donald how grateful and obedient Australia has always been to its great and powerful friend.

We have been in every war America has instigated for more than 60 years – probably longer, but living memory will be sufficient for the moment.

We share the same values – well, perhaps not guns, but we like trade, at least when we are winning. We are worried about the Pacific, we are good at racist dog-whistling about the horrors of asylum seekers and we are at one in denying climate change.

Actually, we won’t even mention it – after all, it would be tactless to do so when millions of children and adults around the world are demonstrating about it, and just down the road the United Nations is running an emergency session on the subject, a session neither of the recalcitrant leaders will attend.

Morrison fawned that Trump’s approach to his trade war was entirely justified and within the rules – Trump’s rules, at least

So back on with the slobber: Morrison fawned that Trump’s approach to his trade war was entirely justified and within the rules – Trump’s rules, at least. And anyway, Americans know they have no better friend than Australia – 100 years of mateship.

We cringed back in 1966, when Harold Holt declared on our behalf: ‘We will be all the way with LBJ.’ In 2019 we await a similar promise: ‘We will go up the rump of Donald Trump.’

Trump responded by dubbing Morrison a man of titanium; as trivia buffs would know, the principal use of titanium is the manufacture of white paint, make of that what you may. No expense was spared: a rent-a-crowd was enlisted with free flags handed out for the customers to wave, and there was a 19 gun salute. All of which unfortunately missed.

The jean-creamers of our obsequious leader’s cheer squad in The Australian could barely contain themselves, and indeed are making no attempt to do so. Why, there was a state dinner – yes, Potus actually invited ScoMo and his eager hangers on (but not, sadly, his favourite happy-clapper; he ordered pastor, not pasta – perhaps the Americans misheard) to sit down and eat with him, instead, presumably, of sending them out for some take away.

And we were breathlessly told that the menu included ravioli, fish and apple pie – a trifle bland, one would have thought, but at least there was little danger of anyone throwing up during the gush that followed.

It has been 13 long years since our last state dinner, when George W Bush was duchessing John Howard

And it has been 13 long years since our last state dinner, when George W Bush was duchessing John Howard.

Of course, we all know what happened then: our prime minister was anointed the President’s deputy sheriff and sent home to enlist Australians into America’s wars, with predictably disastrous results. Which are still playing out in the Middle East and beyond. Given Morrison’s easy acquiescence to Trump’s early sallies against Iran, the prospects are worse than ominous.

The first toast may well have been the preliminary to a poisoned chalice.

But Morrison obviously feels no apprehension – rather, he seems to revel in his submission. As long as there are a few photo-ops, a selfie or two, it will all be worthwhile. So let the kowtow continue.

Look at the famous people whom he has met: shitloads of the super-rich (read: potential donors) and even a real celebrity – Greg Norman, maybe even Nicole Kidman

And look at the famous people whom he has met: shitloads of the super-rich (read: potential donors) and even a real celebrity – Greg Norman, maybe even Nicole Kidman. And he even visited Wapakoneta, Ohio – almost certainly the first Australian politician to do so. The reason? Australian’s richest man, Richard Pratt, is setting up a factory there, so the cardboard king is dragging along the cardboard prime minister for window dressing. A fitting end to the grovel-a-thon.

Naturally the visit will be regarded as an amazing triumph for our prime minister; only one other head of government has been accorded the privilege of a state dinner by the Donald, so ScoMo must be something really, really, special.

The reality is probably rather more mundane. Trump needs all the friends (read sycophants and yes men) that he can get. He has alienated almost all America’s respectable allies, and the totalitarian dictators he finds most congenial are regarded as unacceptable, even to his Republican colleagues. Morrison, by contrast, is very comfortable to sit on. What’s not to like? And ScoMo is only too happy to provide the beanbag Trump requires.

But it should not be said that Morrison is only interested in sucking up. He is equally happy sucking down, so come in, Pauline Hanson, and walk all over the supine and subservient prime minister.

There is absolutely no point in yet another inquiry into the Family Court; we know the main problem, the lamentable lack of resources offered by Morrison’s government

There is absolutely no point in yet another inquiry into the Family Court; we know the main problem, the lamentable lack of resources offered by Morrison’s government. And in any case, of the last two inquiries, one has been ignored altogether, and the other has not even been finalised. No one – not the lawyers, not the experts, not even Morrison’s own party room – thinks that starting another one is a good idea.

But one of Hanson’s children has complained that he was dudded by the court, so apparently that makes it a matter of vital importance. Not only has Morrison acquiesced, he has already anointed Hanson as deputy chair of the bodgie exercise, an almost unique precedent and an entirely unwarranted promotion.

The backlash against nearly everyone who has a real interest in the subject has been intense. But who cares? All that matters is that Hanson can be kept onside in the hope that she can deliver a vote in the senate to help Morrison secure his legislative agenda, which seems to consist exclusively of wedging the Labor Party.

The sight of the nation’s prime minister putting himself in thrall to the demented demagogue of the lunatic fringe should be humiliating and pathetic – and indeed it is. But that’s our glorious leader in action. He may be short of ideas and bereft of principle, but he has never seen an arsehole he wouldn’t kiss.

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  1. “All of which unfortunately missed.” So quietly said but it made my day.
    And talking of sucking, Morrison has been sucked in thoroughly by this Pentecostal Cult. How much influence does this extremist religion have on his role as leader in Australia?

  2. Quote. “Australian’s richest man, Richard Pratt, is setting up a factory there, so the cardboard king is dragging along the cardboard prime minister for window dressing”.

    Another Morrison Miracle. The cardboard king has been resurrected.

    I understood Richard passed away some years ago and his son Anthony now runs the business

  3. STOP PRESS ! Kristina Keneally to challenge for leadership of the labor party !! Bob Hawke would turn in his grave .. God Bless the great one !! This has always been Keneally’s ambition . Would this outcome be positive for the labor party Mungo ?
    Would the Australian voters warm to her policies?
    Not a chance ! This will plunge labor to the depths never seen before .”. Socialism is communism without the enforcement is it not “

    • Wow is sparkling Kristina really taking on dullard Albanese – a charismatic outspoken principled leader takes on the timid, visionless rolly polly backflipper. I might actually start taking an interest in Canberra if she delivers a few blows to wipe that smirk off scomos snout! She might put climate change back on the agenda, and free the refugees, and reform that cruel, punitive welfare system, save our last remaining forests if not the reef – now wouldn’t that be wonderful – she could actually team up with the other progressives across the political spectrum and make action happen, instead of grovelling to those moronic right wing nutters – as eloquently detailed by Mungo – we could feel proud again, instead we’re stuck with scomo & co who make so many Australian’s cringe with shame and horror.
      Kristina if your considering a move, I urge you to go for it – you could be the catalyst for change we’re all longing to see happen! KK for PM!

      • You see i vote for who would be best for the Australian population.. !! However it would not matter if the Current government had the country out of debt , 100 % renewables. 1000 a week for welfare recipients…open borders .. any coalition government in would be unacceptable ..!!
        Why? well who knows …just cant satisfy some people …

  4. Titanium is also used in warplanes & missiles, so maybe the ‘Titanium Man’ title is a reference to the deep & ongoing defence relationship. I understand the ‘Rocket Man’ moniker has already been allocated.

  5. Socialism aint Communism & if I may borrow it*
    ‘Donald’s old duck’ would quack at that. I spose
    it’s Labor’s time to copy-cat & frack itself. Why
    not? Because it’s a long way from the next
    election & Bob Hawk has had a gut full of the
    Aussie public. [Thanks Emily*]

    • Actually Stefanie, if you look up a book of political philosophy you will find that socialism is communism, just without the revolution, the communism we come to by natural selection. And at any rate this warning is too late, we already have it.

  6. Barrow’s ‘stop press’ was a cooked rooster – ie; a feather
    duster. I had hoped he’d seen ‘into the future’ as KK [no,
    not the Klan] is the one most likely to put Climate back
    into intelligent discussion. Kristina… this is an SOS. At
    least consider it.

  7. “How embarrassment” as Effi would say. If the press corp(se) doesn’t give him the works when he returns – Chatham Rule currently in force – over this revolting display of grovelling and brown-nosing then they have really lost any shred of credibility.
    Assuming that they have any, after decades of spruiking neolib nutbaggery.

  8. Recollections from the Vietnam war days: When Harold Holt cried “All the way with LBJ”, Gough Whitlam responded by saying that he would feel a lot better if someone could tell him where LBJ was going.

    I also remember the private comment by Marshall Green, the US ambassador to Australia, that conservative politicians in Australia were “so obsequious” that it was “a downright embarrassment”. Nothing has changed.

    Thanks, Mungo. I have been reading you since the ‘Nation Review’ days. In those days I thought that there was a chance that we could change this country, but no …

  9. Bravo Mungo! I’m so sick of this government. I was wondering on the way to work this morning if we, as a nation, can lodge a motion of ‘no confidence’. Dream on…

  10. Hey… I’ve got titanium ‘anchors’ in both shoulders. They’re
    the rocket-ship things the US sends to Mars. Could it be
    that Trump’s up to something stranger than any of us
    could guess at? That ScoMo’s moon-bound & spaced…

  11. There is a white paint called ‘titanium’ but not sure that means it has titanium in it, just a strong paint, but who cares about facts … I said about socialism being communism without the revolution, the communism the communists still want, by stealth if not anything else, and my post was not accepted … did they all go home to knit jumpers and darn socks? And who owned half of Coronation Drive in Brisbane?

  12. And a prime bit of land in Fortitude Valley, the upstairs taken by ZZZ, or was it ZZ then? The student radio station anyway. And downstairs the monthly keg of Guinness, a maybe plate of potatoes with butter, and musos, ridiculous conversation. All of which meant rent, our little stipend for the landowners as they mused on the best practice of class reaction, functionalism , socialist realism, bureaucratic Mangoism these days … the stanchions are giving way, the cows no longer milking. … our future is being predicted. The crystal ball has become the globe.


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