The Politics    Friday, July 3, 2015

TGIF

By Sean Kelly

An inglorious week in politics

Sometimes there are weeks which make you wonder if politics is actually an ingeniously conceived, infinitely elaborate practical joke with a very, very long payoff – a payoff so far in the distance that none of us will live to see it.

A brief summary of the flimsy week we’ve just watched:

The week began with headlines caused by a Liberal MP nobody had heard of pulling out of a show everybody claims they don’t watch.

Tuesday gave the media another excuse to report on the media when a court found that Joe Hockey had been defamed by posters he didn’t like, but not by the articles advertised by those posters, which he also didn’t like.

On Wednesday it was revealed that the government had considered going ahead with superannuation changes until it turned out the opposition was already going ahead with superannuation changes, which the government decided meant it had been a bad plan all along.

On Thursday a Liberal senator that a few people had heard of distracted everybody (including me) by saying same-sex marriage was a distraction.

And today Liberal minister Andrew Robb agreed, saying, “None of the millions of families out there who are concerned about their jobs and paying the bills will thank us for being preoccupied for weeks and weeks with this issue,” forgetting the inconvenient truth that some of those families might – in fact, wait, definitely do – include same-sex couples. And late afternoon the government report into Q&A was released, which join in if you know the chorus gave the media another excuse to talk about the media.

Serious things did happen, of course. The government was rightly challenged over new detention centre secrecy laws. Greece almost lost its footing on the cliff edge of economic doom, and is still stumbling as I write this. But most of our politicians, not wanting to be belled as the wowsers who spoiled the joke, gamely ignored those downers.

Boy, this punchline better be a good one.

Have a good weekend.

 

Today’s links

Sean Kelly

Sean Kelly is a columnist for The Sydney Morning Herald and The Age, and was an adviser to Labor prime ministers Julia Gillard and Kevin Rudd.

@mrseankelly

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