The dark, opaque recesses of Tory politics are infested with trolls, necromancers, leakers, spin doctors, quacks, hacks, lobbyists and dirty tricksters - the shadowy agents of malfeasance nurtured by a culture of guile and deceit.
That culture has again been starkly revealed with the release of Kenneth Hayne's report into the criminality of the banks with an implicit condemnation of the protection racket run by their political pals on the right.
Kenneth Hayne QC with Tosh Friednburnt and his shit-eating grin. Photo: The Australian
The waft of eau-de-colon is particularly strong this time. This dead cat is not one of their planned distractions pulled from their grab bag of dirty tricks. The bought-and-paid-for Libs voted 26 times against the establishment of the Royal Commission ("a populist whinge") and are now damned by their own words. How will they now try to bury this odious moggy?
Of the major political parties the practice of the dark arts seems to be most warmly embraced by the Libs (trading as the Liars' Party).
Their off-siders, the gormless rubes of the Gnats are perhaps too distracted by rorting and the shagging of staffers, or perhaps they are too yokel for anything more sophisticated than the crudities of pork barrelling and bag-carrying for their mining patrons.
Labor is less malignant - their machinations lean more to fratricidal factionalism, lately kept in check, rather than the shameless trickery practised on the public by the Liars.
Through repeated application the Lying Nasties' dirty tricks are apparent to all but the wilfully blind, the purposely ignorant and the genetically stupid. Their framework for nastiness was constructed by that beetle-browed, gnomic goblin and Tory icon John The Lying Rodent Howard with the assistance of the master of the dark political arts and turd-for-hire Lynton Crosby. Those two bilkers have departed the immediate scene but their practices live on, embraced by the current slew of spivs.
The dog whistle
That autocratic automaton Kommandant Klutz, with all the charm and subtlety of a Gestapo interrogation, tried his hand at this favoured technique on his favourite targets - refugees and, fortuitously for him, a push of young dark blokes behaving badly. But Klutzy is not known for possessing any sort of intellect; an idiot savant without the savant bit. His delivery via megaphone and front-end loader lacks the targeted precision of the more experienced practitioner of the dog whistle. Enter FauxMo.
Now Scotty's toast ain't buttered all the way to the edge either, his thread doesn't go all the way to the end ... but compared to Klutz he's a master tactician, and no doubt, counselled by more cunning minds he's avoided the temptation to wrap himself in the flag chanting "oi oi oi". His dog whistle to the jingoistic deplorables co-opted our reverence for James Cook with a re-enactment of an historical event that never happened. Nudge nudge wink wink say no more; nice try FauxMo.
A favoured Liar's tactic from the Howard/Crosby arsenal of obfuscation and diversion the wedge has been tried on repeatedly - the futility manifesting itself in confected, bug-eyed outrage from an ever more frustrated Mal Trembles and FauxMo. Labor has not fallen for it - a calm and measured dead bat being played by Bill Shorten, whose po-faced responses as he wiped the Tory spittle form his brow with just the hint of a smile drove the tag team Prime Ministers into increasing levels of red-faced histrionics, hyperbole and hypocrisy.
Ironically, a massive self-inflicted wedgie has been applied to the Liars - three volumes of excoriation of the corporate urgers and spivs who make up the natural Tory constituency; the same urgers and spivs that the Liars insisted needed billions of tax-payer dollars whereas a 10 square metre cell and a reach around from Bubba is the appropriate alternative.
This is a charming Crosby concept of constantly feeding the pigs (that's you and me) a particular line of propaganda throughout a term of office.
Consistency and focus have not been characteristic of the past six years of dumpster fire governance though. Superior economic management is a Tory myth that they have neglected to trumpet of late - too caught up in internal revenge and treachery; however as they stare into the abyss they have dusted off their favourite lie.
Ignoring history, ignoring current circumstances they will cultivate the con. It takes a truly gobsmacking level of chutzpah to receive a forensic, independent damnation of your six years of pandering to the systemic corruption of our financial institutions and then to, not just dodge responsibility, but to blame Labor. A blame-shifting of outrageous arrogance, cowardice, cant, humbug and deceit that is multiplied by their facile, oxymoronic claim to a better command of the economy.
These "superior economic managers" substitute superstition for science, they sacrifice facts to their discredited ideological gods, they malignantly sabotage the telecommunicaions and energy infrastructure needed for a 21st century economy, they vandalise our water resources, they ignore the real costs of climate change denial and they engineer a compliant media and public service to avoid scrutiny of their misdeeds and incompetence.
They are beyond shame, they are bereft of ideas, they are captive to a tattered Randesque ideology of Fuck You Jack. Yet, unbelievably, they have fooled a lot of the people a lot of the time with the blatant falsehood of their economic talents.
Fear mongering and division
The betrayal of our national interests is no more starkly illustrated than by the Lying Rodent's embrace of fear mongering and its subsequent enthusiastic deloyment by the swivel-eyed nutters such as Ten Flags Tony, Erstazgruppenfuhrer Spud Dutton, Herr Abetz, FauxMo and his happy-clapping chosen people of Horizon Church et al.
Rightwing governments eveywhere love a bogeyman. If there isn't one, they'll invent one. Us vs them, goodies and baddies, lifters and leaners, the taxed and the taxed-nots, the chosen vs the outsiders. "Team Australia - you're either with us or against us".
The unemployed and the left behind, unionists (the average unionist is a 45 year old nurse), the indigenous, brownish folk, pinkish folk (gays and their suspicious agendas), greenish folk, progressive types, scientists (scientists for gods' sake!) - anyone not worshipping at the temple of mammon, anyone with community spirit is on their shit list.
Nation building is entirely dispensble in the cause of greed and self-interest. If a divided populace and an unfair society serves that cause then it's a price the Lying Nasties are more than willing to pay. Traitors the lot of 'em.
* * * * *
Dead cat theory is another of the inventions of the devious Lynton Crosby - when found out, throw a dead cat on the table as a distraction.
The Royal Commission into Misconduct in the Banking, Superannuation and Financial Services Industry is a dead cat not of their choosing. They ducked and weaved, they prevaricated, they obfuscated, they tried it all in their futile attempts to head it off. There's ya dead cat Josh - enjoy!
Shorten's shadenfreude is ramped up to 11.
The LNP Ethics and Integrity Index
Egregious arseholes - The Top Ten
Independent Australia. Corruption rife within the Liberal Party
Canberra Times. Best volume of Hayne report is the one that he didn’t bother to write
“A populist whinge.” “I think there is the great risk that if the opposition continues to engage in this recklessness that the only product of that approach could be to undermine confidence in the banking and finance system.” “There is nothing more than crass populism seeking to undermine confidence in the banking and financial system, which is key to jobs and growth in this country” “Politics is doing damage to our banking and financial system, and we are taking control as a government to protect the strength of our banking system through a properly constituted inquiry on these terms of reference, rather than the alternatives present in other commission of inquiry proposals.”
"The banking industry royal commission hasn't uncovered bad behaviour that the government didn't know about."
"A royal commission “doesn’t do anything other than write a report.”
“We have got to stop the banks and our financial services sector being used as a political football.”
Scott Morrison, even described the royal commission as “regrettable” – not because of any alleged actions by the banking system but because “politics is doing damage to our banking and financial system” From The Guardian
Budget 2014: ASIC's funding cut in move away from financial sector oversight
June 2014: APRA boss John Laker tells Joe Hockey don’t undermine bank safety
Budget 2018: Funding reduced at corporate regulator ASIC amid banking royal commission revelationsBudget 2018: Funding reduced at corporate regulator ASIC amid banking royal commission revelations
May 2018: Former PM Tony Abbott doesn’t regret ASIC funding cut, says regulators appear ‘asleep at the wheel’