Friday 5th of June 2020

taking the piss out of the unemployed... and exposing the politicians pissing money against the porcelain...

Series 2
Taking the Piss
Meet Craig Tinkler, the Parliamentary piss-taker.

Piss in your pants comedy…… 


Politicians say lots of pretty things in their maiden speeches. I don’t recall any of them mentioning a desire to collect the bodily fluids of the nation’s most vulnerable as the driving force behind their yen for high office.

I am also having trouble remembering Prime Minister Scott Morrison mentioning his urine and saliva policy during the election campaign.

And yet here we are – our government will soon be passing around sample cups and asking the unemployed to wee into them.

Details are unforthcoming about whether the taxpayer’s representatives will be in or out of the cubicle while their subjects produce their samples.

They will be tested for various illicit drugs, including opiates, cannabis, methamphetamine and ecstasy.

The drug that causes the most social harm – alcohol – goes unmentioned.

But that’s okay, because it’s possible to do a job while drunk, or half drunk, right?

After all, Barnaby Joyce has admitted he was either drinking heavily or hungover for a good chunk of his deputy prime ministership.

And in 2009 Tony Abbott got so drunk at work he passed out on a couch and missed the vote on the Rudd government’s $42 billion stimulus response to the global financial crisis.

As Malcolm Turnbull said later: “I can't remember anyone else missing a vote because they were too drunk to get in the chamber.”

Apparently it’s only a higher class of person who can function while under the influence, and still draw on their taxpayer-funded income.

The three sites chosen for the trial were singled out because, we are told, they have a higher proportion of people on working-age payments, higher rates of drug-related presentations at hospital, and higher police involvement in drug-related incidents.

The government gave the same justification in 2017, but an SBS report on Logan, situated between Brisbane and the Gold Coast, quoted the local mayor as saying the drug-related crime statistics quoted by government were “flimsy”.

The same report stated figures from the Queensland police showed drug-related offences had fallen to below the state average.

famous aussie political drunks...


Malcolm Fraser

The former prime minister, who died earlier this year, was famously discovered sans trousers in the foyer of a seedy Memphis, Tennessee hotel during a conference in 1986. Fraser appeared at 7am wearing only a towel, after losing his $10,000 Rolex watch, passport, wallet and $600 cash. 

He maintained he was drugged and not drunk, a story backed by his wife, Tamie.

“They were having him on. Poor old boy,” she said in 2007. “Someone must have slipped him a mickey finn as soon as he walked in. He rang me up and told me about it when he got back to his own hotel. There was this awful voice.”

John Gorton

According to veteran journalist Laurie Oakes, former prime minister John Gorton once boarded a VIP jet in Melbourne after a boozy official dinner, and:

He fell asleep, was woken a while later by the noise of the engines, and vomited. As a flight attendant cleaned up, the apologetic PM asked if she was surprised an old fighter pilot like him would still get airsick.

Yes, she said – particularly since the plane had not yet taken off.

Kevin Rudd

In 2007, news broke that Kevin Rudd had visited Scores, a Manhattan strip club. He claimed to have been too drunk to remember the details of the night, spent with Labor MP Warren Snowdon and the editor of the New York Post, the Australian Col Allan.

“I have never tried to present myself as Captain Perfect,” Rudd said at the time. The night out, which occurred in 2003, was quickly parodied by other politicians who made even more ancient confessions.

“The last time I attended a strip place would have probably been in the 1970s, when I was a student,” then-Victorian premier John Brumby said. “I think if my memory’s correct it was probably in Sydney.”

John Brogden

In 2005, then-NSW opposition leader John Brogden “had a few drinks and let off some steam” following the resignation of longstanding NSW premier Bob Carr. After reportedly “propositioning” a journalist and pinching another, he made a “mail-order bride” joke about Carr’s Malaysian-born wife, Helena.

After initially dismissing the story as “a grubby Labor Party attack”, Brogden resigned the Liberal leadership and a day later was hospitalised after a self-harm attempt. He is now a chairman of Lifeline Australia.

Dave Tollner

Northern Territory MP Dave Tollner was accused of being drunk and “boorish” on a flight from Adelaide to Canberra in 2004 by South Australian Labor MP Rod Sawford. Tollner was reportedly “ruffling” Christopher Pyne’s hair, and did the same to Sawford.

“I think that’s one of the things a nancy boy in Adelaide would say,” Tollner said. “But I think this is a terrible beat-up.”

Sawford replied that Tollner was a goose, saying: “He ruffled my hair and I told him: ‘The last bloke who did that to me had his jaw broken.’”

Tollner was later appointed the NT’s minister for alcohol rehabilitation and policy, and loosened alcohol laws, saying Territorians were “made to feel like criminal suspects every time they went into a bottle shop”.

Edmund Barton

Australia’s first prime minister, Edmund Barton, was accused of drunkenness by Labor journalist and politician John Norton in 1902:

I myself have seen you [Barton] drunk in the legislative assembly of New South Wales ... I have seen you snoring drunk on several occasions ... you have addressed audiences while under the influence of drink ... when in Brisbane about a year ago you got so disgracefully drunk and incapable that medical aid had to be called in so that you could be ‘toned up’ in time to address a big public meeting. On that occasion your condition and demeanour, the result of your drinking, so shocked some of the audience nearest the platform that they left in shame and disgust ... 

Tony Abbott

Tony Abbott’s 2015 antics included shirtless post-coup partying, and chugging schooners with students in Sydney pubs. But in 2009 he reportedly missed the vote on the Rudd government’s $42bn stimulus package because he fell asleep in his office after a night of drinking with Peter Costello, Kevin Andrews and Peter Dutton. 

“That is an impertinent question,” Abbott said when asked by a journalist whether he had been drunk. He “wasn’t keeping count” of the bottles of wine that were consumed, but thought it was “maybe two”.

Andrew Bartlett

In 2003, Andrew Bartlett, then-leader of the Democrats, gate-crashed the Liberals’ Christmas party, making off with five bottles of wine.

According to reports in the Age, Bartlett returned four bottles at the request of Liberal senator Jeannie Ferris but kept the last.

Later that night, Bartlett abused Ferris during a Senate debate, followed her into the courtyard and allegedly grabbed her with “considerable strength”.

Bartlett took leave from his position as leader, and did not recontest it after the 2004 election. He left parliament in 2007. Ferris commented on his decision to abstain from alcohol that it’s “a difficult decision to take in the building in which we work”.


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And let's not mention the former GG Kerr who should have been drug tested before dismissing the Labor government...


the sky is falling: blame the unemployed...

Scott Morrison’s war on welfare is all about distracting us from climate chaos and a worsening economy, writes Ben Eltham.

According to Shakespeare, winter was the season of England’s discontent. But the Bard never got to visit Australia in the Anthropocene. 

It’s a mark of how radically our climate is changing that spring now seems pretty hostile too. Fires and drought ravage Queensland and New South Wales. Reefs die, rainforests burn, and rivers dry up. 

We are now used to the Coalition ignoring the science on climate change, and so further lies and denial can blend into the background. 

But consider that this week, while Queensland suffered devastating fires, the Queensland Nationals Minister for Water (and natural disasters) David Littleproud publicly stated that he didn’t know if climate change was caused by humans. Meanwhile, the New South Wales state government proposed an emergency ‘Noah’s Ark’ project to move fish from waterholes in the Darling basin. As the climate crisis intensifies, the reaction of pro-pollution conservative politicians looks increasingly risible, even bizarre.

Australia faces a climate crisis – now, today. But the government’s policy is not just to ignore it. The government’s policy – from backing Adani to ignoring the next global climate meeting – is actually to make climate change worse

And then there’s the economy. There’s no sugar-coating it: Australia’s economy is in trouble. Last week’s national accounts figures showed gross domestic product grew  just 1.4 per cent in the past year. Unemployment is trending up. Consumers have stopped spending. Wages are stagnant, living standards are flatlining, while business confidence is falling. Interest rate cuts and the government’s much-vaunted tax cuts haven’t worked

Growth of just 1.5 per cent a year is the slowest growth since the global financial crisis. With Australia’s population growing at around 1.6 per cent annually, the economy is actually shrinking in per capita terms.

The root cause of the malaise seems to be generally agreed: stagnant wages. Once adjusted for inflation, wages for Australian workers have gone nowhere for years. Static wages are eroding the foundations of the economy, some parts of which are in real trouble. Household consumption is anaemic, also at its lowest point since the GFC. Consumer sentiment is flat; retail spending and business confidence are both falling.

House prices in Sydney and Melbourne have bottomed out, which is good news for sellers (but bad news for buyers still locked out of the market). But it at least signals that there won’t be a housing crash in the short term – the true nightmare scenario for RBA governor Phillip Lowe.

And yet, despite the manifest weakness, Treasurer Josh Frydenberg refuses to follow Lowe’s advice, and open the fiscal spigots. Obsessed with the bragging rights of a government surplus, Frydenberg is doing nothing while the domestic economy slows.

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