John Birmingham

The Press Gallery’s mumbled misreporting of Studs Trumbles’ #winning

press

Approx Reading Time-11The collective roargasm described by the press gallery post-Turnbull’s volcanic QT spasm was done so in a lazy pursuit of headline, and sans the proper objectiveness.

 

 

 

If the Canberra Press Gallery didn’t exist, the government would have to invent them. Otherwise how would we ever remember that Malcolm Turnbull is a tactical genius and not some rich, blimp-jousting nimrod, crashing and burning one bloated, gas-filled Hindenburg after another.

Oh, the humanity!

Were it not for the Gallery, after all, we might never have realised that calling a double dissolution election last time was not a strategic masterstroke. No, left to ourselves, we mere punters with a couple of high school Cit-Ed classes and no acquired brain injuries might have thought, “Oh wait, with the whole Senate being put to the vote; gibbering wankbadgers will need only half the usual numbers from the wankbadger demographic to get up. This new Senate will be wankbadgers all the way down!”

Thankfully, we had the Gallery to assure us that Turnbull had just pulled off a move worthy of Machiavelli, raised to the power of Sun Tzu with nitrous tanks bolted on by that guy from the micro party who likes utes and duck murder – the same way they assured us last week that his brain spasm in Question Time was not a symptom of hysterical midget rage as his inner little man finally broke under the pressure, but was rather, you know, Sun Tzu, or at the very least, Baldrick with an extra cunning plan.

It was hard to watch them falling into a drooling trance as their eyes beheld the asshat fascinator, but fall they did. It was just a sudden eruption of OMGWTFPWNAGE tweets at first, but many were ROFLPWNs, soon giving way to gushing editorials about this “fine blazing moment”, the re-embiggening of Studs Trumble, and the humiliating flagpole wedgie he’d just delivered to that awful, plebeian social climber, Chav Tryhard.

Excuse me while I roll my eyes.

If the best hope of our politics is this type of white-truffle Tourette’s moment, we’re fucked.

And yes, having so recently recalled with fondness and advantages the bruising parliamentary rhetoric of Paul Keating, it’s odd to be so underwhelmed by Studs’ dollar-brand homage, but it really was a day-old dog turd posing as a tasty chicken nugget.

“A really big tax cut?” He just needs to pay for it by cutting billions of dollars from welfare outlays. That’s what Parliament was debating and what the Gallery might have reported as the story of the day… before they were distracted.

Turnbull might have whipped his mini-mall gang of toilet screamers and high-born idiots into a collective roargasm – Barnaby Joyce looked like a jumbo serving of potted meat that came to life just long enough to suffer a catastrophic cardiac arrest – but outside of the big green room, his “fine blazing moment” looked like a desperate cock-punch.

And his intended victim?

Initially taken aback like everyone else, by 7.30 that night with Leigh Sales, Shorten looked like a man who’d just had a surprising but very pleasant hot-buttered hand job.

“I feel sorry for Malcolm,” he said. “He touched my willy,” he did not add, but could have.

And why wouldn’t he seem satisfied? Turnbull’s year so far has been a double-brown shit show. He lost his health minister to greed and stupidity (and there’s plenty more of that to go around). Cory Bernardi staged a lone-handed Beer Hall Putsch. Ian MacDonald defended his lifelong right to travel business class everywhere at taxpayer’s expense (remember what I said about greed and stupidity?). The taxpayers themselves are still getting bent over a barrel and violently corn-holed by Centrelink’s profit-driven debt collectors every single fucking day (greed and, well, you know). Centrelink staff are in open rebellion. And Scott Morrison is in love with a big lump of coal that he carries everywhere with him like Lars and the Real Girl, if Lars’ anatomically accurate latex love muppet was a big lump of coal.

It’s not easy of course, being able to look a man in the eye when you’re wedged deep inside his pocket, but it’s not anatomically impossible. You just have to commit. And Studs Trumble does speak the truth when he says, “I don’t suck up to billionaires, I look them in the eye…” because his natural burrowing motion, the chin tucked into the chest, the shoulders rounded and the arms held tightly to the sides as he pushes ever closer to, say, you-know-who, does eventually place him so far up inside the billionaire tyrant that he can indeed look him right in the eye and tell him, along with all of the other billionaires:

“Listen, you! I’m only going to say this once. How would you like a really big tax cut?”

He just needs to pay for it by cutting billions of dollars from welfare outlays.

That’s what Parliament was debating and what the Gallery might have reported as the story of the day…before they were distracted.

 

The words above live in a special place. A private, subscription only column delivered to your email twice a week. That’s what happens in a vicious capitalist system like ours. If you like it and want more, gimme some sugar. One buck a week. Two columns. Just for you. Alien Side Boob. 

 

John Birmingham

John Birmingham has published lots of books. So many that he sort of loses track of them. He wrote features for magazines in a decade before publishing He Died With A Falafel In His Hand, working for Rolling Stone, Playboy and the Long Bay Prison News amongst others. He won the National Award For Non-Fiction with Leviathan: an unauthorised biography of Sydney. He started writing airport novels because they were more fun. His most recent series of books that improve with altitude are the Dave Hooper novels. He blogs at the cheeseburgergothic.com and can be found on Twitter as @JohnBirmingham

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