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Shagging in the Speaker's Chair

The Speaker's Chair in SA Parliament is rumoured to be not just a Holy Grail in terms of the position, but also in what position you assume on gaining it. Shagging in the seat outside of sitting hours is apparently regarded by some as quite a thrill. Metaphorically something similar's happening in Canberra today, except that with the annulment of the proposed vote marriage if nobody's in the chair, all of Parliament's screwed.

"The House of Representatives shall, before proceeding to the despatch of any other business, choose a member to be the Speaker of the House."

Sounds easy? With the news today from PM Gillard that the Opposition has walked away from the Speaker-pairing arrangement, the Labor Government are going to take the reins with a majority of one.

While Abbott has suggested the Libs will accept Harry Jenkins back in the chair, if Abbott decides to play his usual gutter game, he could vote against a Labor nominee. If one independent abstains, the vote will be tied.

According to Standing Orders, this is what happens next:

For the office of Speaker, a nominee must receive a majority of votes. If no nominee has a majority after a ballot, the nominee with the smallest number of votes shall be excluded from later ballots, and a fresh ballot shall be held. This process shall be repeated as often as necessary until one nominee receives a majority of the votes, and this nominee shall be elected Speaker.

Monday's going to be a very long day, and possibly the catalyst of the next election, one that the current Opposition would be the most likely to win.

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Abbot tackling the NBN

Abbott should introduce a short bill in parliament requiring the government to produce a cost/benefit analysis of various options for the NBN. With so many diverse voices questioning its wisdom, even some strong Labor MPs may support him.

Paul Keating, role model?


"I think it's important that ordinary people in the community, having received an infringement notice for an offence they didn't commit, basically understand that the system is not loaded against them, that they're entitled to have the courage of their convictions and I hope today there is some social good in that outcome."

Ordinary citizen with motive versus two or more trained cops equals reasonable doubt? Yeah, right.

Admittedly a long time ago, when I learned to drive, a yellow light meant stopping if possible. Accelerating to beat the light was the work of hoons playing Russian roulette. 

What does this have to do with a hung parliament? Not sure. Something to do with  the nature of power?

It is a response of sorts to Fiona: respect should be deserved. 

Labor loses first vote in new Parliament

With preggie Tania Plibersek out of commission, and a coupla Indies siding with the Coalition, this was a demonstrative muscle-flex.  Can't wait to see how the rest of the arvo pans out!

Abbott's golden opportunity

Tony Abbott, on the other hand, needs only one member of the Labor camp cross the floor to pass legislation.

I suspect some of the independents would love to vote for the right Liberal legislation. It would stand them well at the next election. The Tony Abbott would go into the next election with some clearly demonstratable wins.

Enter John Howard

...saying that if one Labor pollie falls over, there'll be an unmanageabe tied Parliament. Let's hope we're not about to see an example at the first instant, but my sense of foreboding hasn't gone away.

What if the Liberal crones drop off the perch though

Bronnie "kero baths" is older than god's grannie and Fabulous Phil "child torturer" Ruddock is older than his grandfather.

I noted some other very old faces in the new faces too among the childlike Roy Wyatt.

 With Tony Crook out of the show now that makes like more interesting and I bet Katter will jump tomorrow as he wants some of the cream.


So, Jay, if one were to put the least tasteful interpretation onto your second-last comment, that suggests that you believe that I am a femonazi.

Or did I miss your irony signal somewhere?

Oops, forgive me - my humourless feminism/ageism showing its slip again...

May we live in interesting times

Don't apologise, Fiona. Cherish and relish your idiosyncrasies. That's who you are. 

Don't know which second last comment I made, but you're quite welcome to take whatever malicious interpretation nourishes your mood. 

On a more serious note, I do expect higher standards from Ms Gillard than Mr Abbott, partly because she is our prime minister, and partly because she needs to be - her job is tougher because she is a woman.

If we take the thinking to its logical conclusion, both  Ms Gillard than Mr Abbott knew what they were signing wasn't worth the paper it was written on, but were doing so to con/satisfy the naive independents. She is now trying to milk whatever sympathy she can through her act of righteous indignation.

I'm disappointed that it's gone back so quickly to partisan politics. On the other hand, good old fashioned competition often produces more real innovation that cosy collaboration. Lets see what emerges this season.

Mea culpa, mea maxima culpa...

Oh dear me, I forgot - Mr Abbott had an earlier career as a journalist. Suppose that cancels out the stuff about understanding the nature of a contract (pace Margo...).

Isn't Julia embarrassed?

Surely, as a lawyer, Julia should know better than to sign an unenforceable contract?

Isn't Tony embarrassed?

Surely, Jay, Tony (ooops, almost typed "Tones" - or was that "Mr Rabbit"?) should know just as well, given that he has Bachelor degrees in both Economics and Law from the oldest (and, some would maintain) most eminent Australian university - the University of Sydney?

Having just - deliberately - lapsed myself, what about we all start giving the MPs (including the PM) the courtesy of their full names?

Showing your age

"the courtesy of their full names".

It's the 21 century, Fiona. Kevin'07 was the slogan that definitively defined the new mores. 


He's a man

C'mon, Fiona,

Women need to be perfect, if they want a man's job.

Men, we can bungle along, and the boys' club (which in this enlightened age, includes women, but plays to the same rules) forgives us anything. 

Same difference

Where is my math wrong?

Without pairing, Labor has 75, Coalition 74.

With one Labor MP missing, it'll go to the Speaker, the Bill will still pass. 

 With two Labor MPs missing, the Bill will fail.

With pairing, Labor 75, Coalition 73 

 With one Labor MP missing, the Bill will pass.

With two Labor MPs missing, the Bill will fail.

Pairing makes no difference 

However, the real fun is if the Liberals introduce a Bill, all they need to get it through is a single MP to cross the floor.

Æsop revived

"Sour grapes", "Dogs in the manger"?  My, after two thousand years the Roman slave still has currency.

So how did this all come to pass? Well, I guess those disaffected who burned their ballot papers will. given the chance, have second thoughts if another election is called before time.

Not all Libs are Rats

The Federal Government has found a Coalition MP who is prepared to be deputy speaker and pair with Speaker Harry Jenkins, the ABC understands.

ABC News 24 political editor Chris Uhlmann has been told the deal is close to being sealed.

Any such move by a Coalition MP would preserve the Government's two-seat majority and would no doubt enrage the Opposition and its leader Tony Abbott.

Looks like there may still be those in the Liberal party that are willing to put national interest ahead of party politics.

No pairing partner for FM Rudd = 74 all

I'm waiting for online confirmation of the ABC headline bulletin I just heard say that the Libs are considering not having pairing arrangements with ministers travelling overseas. This would chain both Gillard and Rudd to Australian shores during Parliamentary sitting sessions, and probably look fairly silly to O.S. interests wanting to talk to them.

Will wait and see before going further, but it looks to me that a one vote lead isn't enough to do the job. Both sides would have known this well before the last fortnight's charades began. 

Sure, but Abbott is a wrecker

Everyone will turn against the lieberals, even Katter has and Windsor's town agrees with him.

Abbott was always appalling

He should have lost his seat after the 2007 election after he abused Bernie Banton.

Dogs in the manger

Yes, they are dogs in the manger.

The sort of people who sit back and knock others, but have nothing constructive to add, themselves.

People who play the person not the ball, people who put personality before issues and substance, whose only mode of conversation is ad hominem and whose only aim is is destroy something others are comfortable with, because they are too lazy and arrogant to adjust themselves and can't stand that others succeed where they fail.

Malcontent, fitful shades and voices of the past, rising from the grave of centuries past.

Human overflow who know they can't make it themselves and whose only consolation will be dragging the rest of us down with them.

Of all humans the ones I despise most, are sour grapes, dog in the manger losers.

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