“I’ll Turn Back The Boats! I’ll Just Say N0!”


Thanks Alan Moir for permission to reproduce this so apt Popeye the Sailorman cartoon.

Tony Abbott knows he has authority
To give commands, to turn the tide of history.
He can ignore advice, needn’t wait for votes.
Of course he can turn back those boats!

He has a sacred pledge or covenant
With God. He knows that government
Is rightly his….or soon will be. It must.
His blood oath on that just needs our trust.

Knowing himself to be pure of soul,
And with a clear mandate from Newspoll,
He demands again an immediate election.
Gillard must obey, with appropriate genuflection.

Yes! Once Liberals are in ascendance,
Labor, the Greens and Independents
Must finally obey his orders
As he secures Australian borders.

Then his law enacted will be enough
To show the world how stern’s the stuff
Of Aussie sailors.  They will obey!
Who cares what  daft old admirals have to say?

As for rulers in any neighbouring land.
They were shown exactly where they stand
By John Howard a few short years ago.
Ask Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono!

In power he’ll accept no opposition,
Least of all from within the Coalition.
High Court?  International Law of the Sea?
He laughs.  “There’s just one law around here!  That’s me!”

NOTES:     My writing of notes to accompany the first version of this pome on 27/06/12 was interrupted by a week’s unexpected stay in hospital!   I delayed my early evening walk with Tacker to watch the final vote on the Oakeshott Bill in the House of Reps.  So the late afternoon light in WA was rather dimmer than usual, and yes I was all stirred up by the genuine emotion of many MPs and angered by the filibustering shallow speeches of Tony Abbott’s people as Julie Bishop and others worked on the unhappy and  conflicted Mal Washer.   That may have contributed to my being knocked down on a crosswalk bv a driver who was focussed solely on traffic to their right before suddenly turning left.    Whatever the cause I am now back home with a reconstructed knee in a very uncomfortable splint, but it’s not life threatening.    Tacker is well.  Family and friends have rallied round.   And I’ve had all you lovely readers sending messages of support!  Also today the driver’s insurance agent told me that they were meeting all my post-operative expenses like physio and specialist fees and to send him all the bills.

So my own news is good.  Which is sadly not the case for asylum seekers.  With nothing to do but lie still in bed for almost ten days I have been absorbing almost every facet of the debate about boat people arriving here in Australia.  I have seen many replays of speeches and watched the faces of dozens of politicians as they met the press for interviews and commentary.   If anyone needs an objective and clear account of the boat people’s story as it has developed here since John Howard first saw what a political gold mine it could provide after the largely bi-partisan policies of the late 20thC they should go to the Political Sword website.   There Ad Astra applies facts and logic to the asylum seeker issue.

All I have the energy to do here is to find some way to express my outrage about the ruthlessness of one man who I think was primarily responsible for Australia’s failure to find some solution to the impasse around this tragic situation last week.  Yes, Labor has made mistakes and its internal factional differences have played their part, but this time they were united and prepared to follow the party line and Julia Gillard in supporting Rob Oakeshott’s compromise bill.   Yes, the Greens are naively idealistic to the point of stupidity, but Sarah Hansen-Young’s adolescent histrionics would have been irrelevant had the Coalition seen reason as the Liberal Party once did under Malcolm Fraser’s leadership.

Their leader now, however, is Tony Abbott, a man who will not see reason.  His sole raison d’être is to gain political power.  As I watched him hour after hour speechifying in front of cameras and before audiences, rationalising and lying his way out of every objection that was put to his policy of destructive negativity, I was astounded that so many in the the media accepted his hypocrisy, prevarications and arrogance as somehow an acceptable feature of the political game.  His outrageous refusal to take advice from officials and senior bureaucrats,  to consider how High Court rulings or even international law might impact on his policy of turning back boats to Indonesia and off-shore processing in Nauru has had no real media scrutiny from reporters or serious criticism in newspaper editorials.

Cartoonists like Alan Moir have done their bit and some few columnists like Mike Carlton, but it has been left to the fifth estate to do what in the past was the job of main stream media.   Writers like Ad Astra at the Political Sword and the author of Politically Homeless, Andew Elder,  among many others really do appraise the performance of politicians and in the case of Tony Abbott question his fitness to lead the country.   Most of my reading in the past ten days was of commentary like theirs on the web.  I won’t try to add to the volume of that right now, though at a later date when I have more energy I must add the many links I’ve promised myself to note here when I am less tired.   For now,  I’ve run out of puff for writing.  There’s a limit to how much even anger can overcome fatigue in an old, and somewhat traumatised body

PS   I watched Malcolm Turnbull on Q&A tonight and thought how diminished he is, not just by his willingness to have a man such as Tony Abbott as his leader.  It’s also his readiness to mouth the same immoral platitudes, lies and sheer stupidity as I’ve parodied above in my pome.  On second thoughts, that’s no parody!  Every line is true!


Sue,    09/07/12,  My goodness what would some old admirals know about safety at sea!!!!   THEY WILL OBEY.    Maybe the navy should put its first female Admiral, Robyn Walker, as spokesperson. They could enjoy the laugh as Abbott sh!ts himself having to face another female authority figure.

Patriciawa,    09/07/12,    What a good idea!  That would make for a  couple of fun lines above.   I’ll sleep on it.

Sue,    09/07/12,    patriciawa,   i did find it scary that when discussing naval duties, Abbott said ” I’m no Hornblower”. I hope he explains to the navy that he does realise Hornblower is a fictional Royal navy officer.

Pip,    09/07/12,   Well done Patricia.    I particularly liked this verse,

Knowing himself to be pure of soul,
And with a clear mandate from Newspoll,
He demands again an immediate election.
Gillard must obey, with appropriate genuflection.

Abbott’s soul is nowhere near as pure as Bernie Banton’s but Newspoll have done a great job of air-brushing that information from news.con’s pages

That much wanted “immediate election” still hasn’t happened after almost two years which has literally caused Abbott’s brain to fry….

As for the Prime Minister ever genuflecting before Tony Abbott….. not before hell freezes over. :

Then this,
As for rulers in any neighbouring land.
They were shown exactly where they stand
By John Howard a few short years ago.
Ask Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono!

Unfortunately for Abbott he was shown exactly where he stands by the Indonesian government today.   Abbott-SBY didn’t discuss boats:Indon govt

The coalition’s plan to turn back asylum-seeker boats was not discussed with Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono during recent talks, a spokesman for the Indonesian president says.

OPPOSITION Leader Tony Abbott repeatedly has refused to say if the plan was mentioned to Dr Yudhoyono during their meeting in Darwin last week.

Teuku Faizasyah, the president’s spokesman for foreign issues, said Mr Abbott did not mention asylum-seeker boats.

“The president’s meeting with Tony Abbott in Darwin last week was just a casual meeting,” he told AAP.

“That issue was untouched between the two.”

It was not talked about because the Liberal leader was not in charge of government policy and decisions, but the Indonesian government was discussing the issue with Prime Minister Julia Gillard,  Mr Faizasyah said.

Ad Astra,   10/07/12,     Patriciawa   I was delighted to read of your steady recovery.  I hope you will soon be back to full strength.  You have lost none of your poetic skills.  Your pome is delightful, the cartoon is apt, and your words are wise.  Thank you for your kind words about TPS and your link to the current piece.

Talk Turkey,   10/07/12,    ….The last line this time is perfect. Well you know what Louis XIV said, “l’etat, c’est moi!” and you know what happened to him!

paul walter,     11/07/12m   Patricia WA retains her enthusiasm for construction of verse and the sharing of the burgeoning fruits of her endeavours with posters here, (at TPS) as in the past at other sites.  And this time she is very, very accurate in the messaging.
Methinks the Grahame Morris types are already well and truly about trying to light fires, as the election draws closer, then running off to hide while others cop the consequence, as per usual.   Mind you, the ALP does make its own life difficult for itself and easy for its enemies some times, doesn’t it?   Am not sure the Greens are playing it much smarter, either.

cupidstunt, 03/03/13, PatriciaWA fellow sandgroper very eloquent and truthful poem.

Victoria, 03/03/13, Another brilliant poem, Patriciawa.

Fed up,      25/07/13,     yes, Patricia, nothing changes when it comes to this man. That is what is so frightening., No matter how much things change around him, he is still rooted back in the past, distant past.     Turn back the boats, he cannot get past.   Sadly he seems to be saying, stop the boats, stop the people.    We will only allow any here on TPV;s. All will be expected to return home. Well,that must be what it is about, if he is saying they need TPV s when Labor is saying no boat person will be allowed in.   Do not need them for those that attempt to come by boats, as they will never arrived. Must be for all the others that come. Even there Abbott is lowering the numbers by 7000, while Labor will increase the numbers by the same amount.   I get it, that Morrison and Abbott believe that none should come.      Why we have this announcement, before the Bali Group meeting on August 20, is beyond me. It can only be, he is sending a message to Indonesia, he will be doing as he likes, bugger any plans that others have in the region. Bugger any chance of a regional solution.


About patriciawa

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