Discussion:
Mainly for AUers
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Pierre
2005-08-24 11:08:38 UTC
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From the Sydney Morning Herald yesterday (Little Honest Johnny Howard
received a 'gong' from his master, Dubya)

Loading Image...

It'd be funny if it wasn't so bloody serious.
--
Pierre
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Wilbert van Leijen
2005-08-24 11:14:14 UTC
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Post by Pierre
It'd be funny if it wasn't so bloody serious.
I can pose a serious question: how did Howard rose to power? Military coup?
Was he installed by a foreign power? Appointed by Queen Elizabeth? Some
other Dark Overlord then?

You cannot possibly claim he won democratically legitimate elections.
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Michael Warner
2005-08-24 11:22:28 UTC
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Post by Wilbert van Leijen
Post by Pierre
It'd be funny if it wasn't so bloody serious.
I can pose a serious question: how did Howard rose to power?
Sheer patience, mostly. He was a running joke for many years
before becoming old and media-savvy enough to pull off the
statesman bit.
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Wilbert van Leijen
2005-08-24 11:29:22 UTC
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Post by Michael Warner
Sheer patience, mostly. He was a running joke for many years
before becoming old and media-savvy enough to pull off the
statesman bit.
Did he convince anybody? The guy is in a position of power, so what
happened? According to the cartoonist of the SMH, he /is/ still a running
joke. So, how come he runs an entire continent?

Don't tell me he won the elections. People cannot be that stupid, can they
not?
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Strong Bow
2005-08-24 11:46:45 UTC
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Post by Wilbert van Leijen
Don't tell me he won the elections. People cannot be that stupid,
can they not?
Can't they ?

cf Current occupant of 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue.

:-)
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Falling into the abyss Borland rather stupidly said:
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Rudy Velthuis
2005-08-24 11:58:49 UTC
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Post by Wilbert van Leijen
Don't tell me he won the elections. People cannot be that stupid, can
they not?
Of course they can. Just think of those who elected Bush.
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Rudy Velthuis http://velthuis.homepage.t-online.de

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Wilbert van Leijen
2005-08-24 12:11:22 UTC
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Post by Rudy Velthuis
Of course they can. Just think of those who elected Bush.
So people are stupid when they do not vote for the candidate of your
preference, Rudy? Is that how it works?

Or do you think that democracy is basically a bad idea, since it puts people
into power who are stupid or bad, or both?
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Dave Fowler
2005-08-24 12:14:40 UTC
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Post by Wilbert van Leijen
Or do you think that democracy is basically a bad idea, since it puts people
into power who are stupid or bad, or both?
It's probably the best system we've got, but it does sometimes put bad
and/or stupid people in power.
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Lauchlan M
2005-08-24 12:16:14 UTC
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Post by Wilbert van Leijen
So people are stupid when they do not vote for the candidate of your
preference, Rudy? Is that how it works?
Do you think it's intelligent to vote for a candidate who falsely links Iraq
to September 11th terrorism, who lied to the United States in his State of
the Union address, who dropped the ball on addressing the terrorist threat
by invading the wrong country (16 of the 9/11 18 terrorists were from Saudi
Arabia, led by a Saudi Arabian, financed with Saudi Arabian money, and the
remnants of Al Queda basically hid out in Pakistan) and thereby created a
hotbed of anti-western feeling and a training ground for field practice for
terrorists?

There are a lot of reasons why George W. Bush was not an intelligent choice.

There is only one reason I could see to vote for him - psychopathic self
interest. If you do business with the US military-industrial complex or
resources sectors, or stand to benefit from a 1 trillion dollar tax cut and
don't care what is left of the environment or the global geo-political
balance for future generations, W's your man.

Lauchlan M
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Pierre
2005-08-24 11:18:53 UTC
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Post by Wilbert van Leijen
Post by Pierre
It'd be funny if it wasn't so bloody serious.
You cannot possibly claim he won democratically legitimate elections.
The mystery deepens- I know only one person (NOT ME!!) who admits voting
for the little runt.
--
Pierre
Worrigee NSW
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v
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Wilbert van Leijen
2005-08-24 11:31:30 UTC
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Post by Pierre
The mystery deepens- I know only one person (NOT ME!!) who admits voting
for the little runt.
What if this statement is merely a reflection on the environment you're in?

I am going to ask you again: how did Howard acquire power? You suggest he
was voted into office but also claim that based on your observations, this
is impossible.
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Pierre
2005-08-24 12:00:35 UTC
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Post by Wilbert van Leijen
I am going to ask you again: how did Howard acquire power? You suggest he
was voted into office but also claim that based on your observations, this
is impossible.
No good asking me. I'm an avowed Howard Hater since I first spotted it
back in the 70's. Nothing rational about that, but I feel much better.
--
Pierre
Worrigee NSW
,-._|\
/ Oz \
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v
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Benjamin Franklin
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Wilbert van Leijen
2005-08-24 12:21:33 UTC
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Post by Pierre
No good asking me. I'm an avowed Howard Hater since I first spotted it
back in the 70's. Nothing rational about that, but I feel much better.
Some people need strong medicine to cope with reality - you have your
righteous indignation. And if helps you in your daily life, go for it man,
by all means. It works for you, apparently.

There is nothing rational about it and you admit to that, but hey - logic
should not stifle creativity.
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Lauchlan M
2005-08-24 12:01:09 UTC
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Post by Pierre
Post by Wilbert van Leijen
You cannot possibly claim he won democratically legitimate elections.
The mystery deepens- I know only one person (NOT ME!!) who admits voting
for the little runt.
Apparently it was mostly swinging aspirational voters from what used to be
the lower classes over to believing that Howard was going to give them lower
interest rates for their houses, protection from terrorists invading
Australia in refugee boats, and a stable and growing economic climate with
lots of jobs.

Of course, Australian interest rates are basically US interest plus a few
percentage points, the refugees turned out to be refugees fleeing
Afghanistan and Iraq, and they stopped all by themselves when the US invaded
their countries and changed their governments, and the Australian economy is
primarily driven by world markets for resources and agricultural products,
which the Australian government has very little it can do about either way.
And the Howard government is leading a shift from real jobs where people
spent most of their careers to making everyone into a contractor for hire or
temp worker, except for a few exceptions like CEOs who can negotiate good
deals for themselves, and even what is left of that is under threat with the
new but poorly articulated IR legislation.

Howard sold the image or illusion he would provide what people wanted, and
there was little or no opposition for people to call him on it.

Lauchlan M
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Lauchlan M
2005-08-24 11:53:41 UTC
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Post by Wilbert van Leijen
I can pose a serious question: how did Howard rose to power? Military coup?
Was he installed by a foreign power? Appointed by Queen Elizabeth? Some
other Dark Overlord then?
You cannot possibly claim he won democratically legitimate elections.
He proved the politcal addage you can fool more than 50% of the people for 4
elections in the row by preying on people's fears - eg: the immigrants are
taking over the country, terrorists will get us unless we help the US invade
Iraq, etc.

He won democratic elections, but whether he won them _legitmately_ is
another question. If it were a sports game rather than a political event,
you'd say Howard won it not by playing as a sportsman and gentleman, but by
using nastier tricks than the other team, in many cases crossing the line
and breaking the rules (eg lying to the Australian people re: WMD in Iraq
and the motivations for the Iraq invasion), but getting away with it.

Lauchlan M
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Strong Bow
2005-08-24 12:00:36 UTC
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He won democratic elections, but whether he won them legitmately is
another question. If it were a sports game rather than a political
event, you'd say Howard won it not by playing as a sportsman and
gentleman, but by using nastier tricks than the other team, in many
cases crossing the line and breaking the rules (eg lying to the
Australian people re: WMD in Iraq and the motivations for the Iraq
invasion), but getting away with it.
So that would make him a Tony Blur clone. :-)
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Lauchlan M
2005-08-24 12:06:44 UTC
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Post by Strong Bow
He won democratic elections, but whether he won them legitmately is
another question. If it were a sports game rather than a political
event, you'd say Howard won it not by playing as a sportsman and
gentleman, but by using nastier tricks than the other team, in many
cases crossing the line and breaking the rules (eg lying to the
Australian people re: WMD in Iraq and the motivations for the Iraq
invasion), but getting away with it.
So that would make him a Tony Blur clone. :-)
No, I don't think that that analogy holds . . . Blair came in by having a
vision of sorts, that trod a centrist path trying to appease the right and
the left and hold the middle ground. Howard got in basically because the
Australian public was sick of Keating at the time, and then pursued a path
as far to the right as possible, taking extreme positions on various issues.
The Australian left responded by trying to tell the Australian public that
they'd go as far to the right as needed to match Howard, and rather
unsurprisingly lost a sizeable voting base that would have stuck with them
had they just stuck to basic moral principles that the party was meant to
stand for. The left of politics in Australia, apart fromt he Greens, have
completely lost the plot, IMO.

I think the better analogy for Howard on the world scene would be Bush in
the US. Bush came in on the coat-tails of dissatisfaction with Clinton, then
proceeded to use his incumbency to drive the country as far right as he
could, and use American power/hegemony as aggressively as he could.

Lauchlan M
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Wilbert van Leijen
2005-08-24 12:16:13 UTC
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"Lauchlan M" <LMackinnonAT_NoSpam_ozemailDOTcomDOTau> wrote in message
Post by Lauchlan M
If it were a sports game rather than a political event,
you'd say Howard won it not by playing as a sportsman and gentleman, but by
using nastier tricks than the other team, in many cases crossing the line
and breaking the rules (eg lying to the Australian people re: WMD in Iraq
and the motivations for the Iraq invasion), but getting away with it.
So he did not play fair, and that is how he won.

How come that somebody who is stupid (acc. to the cartoonist of the SMH) can
also be fiendishly clever and manipulative?

I mean, I know jack about Aussie politics, but I can assume that Aussie
logic is the same as ours - can I not?
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Dave Fowler
2005-08-24 12:22:14 UTC
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Post by Wilbert van Leijen
I mean, I know jack about Aussie politics
Do you know Bruce?
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Lauchlan M
2005-08-24 12:19:36 UTC
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Post by Wilbert van Leijen
So he did not play fair, and that is how he won.
How come that somebody who is stupid (acc. to the cartoonist of the SMH) can
also be fiendishly clever and manipulative?
I mean, I know jack about Aussie politics, but I can assume that Aussie
logic is the same as ours - can I not?
I believe Bush summed it up very elegantly - "they mis-underestimated me".

And Bush is proud of it. Basically if people think he's a jackass, he gets
away with murder. Literally.

At the moment it's somewhere between 20,000 and 100,000 innocent Iraqis
dead, depending on whose estimates you accept.

Lauchlan M
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