May Reza Berati be the last, Mr Abbott

[Update 24 February 2014, 0820 AEDT: Before commenting, political tribalists might want to read my further comment. Then again, if you don't, you'll reveal yourselves for the fools that you are. So on second thoughts, comment away!]

Photograph of Reza Berati on screen, with a candle in the foregroundA man — no, a youth — fled danger and sought safety with us. But we put him in a concentration camp, and our hired goons stood back while he was bashed to death. According to our Prime Minister, a man who professes to follow the teachings of that Jesus bloke, that’s OK. After all, we don’t want to be “wimps”.

Well, Mr Abbott, I’m a wimp. A weak nerd. Yet I’ve stepped in to stop people being bashed, despite the risk.

I’ve been the one who, alone and late at night on an otherwise deserted street, walked up to the young couple, the shouting man with his hand gripped on the terrified woman’s throat, and said, “Is everything OK, miss?”

I’ve been the one who’s stood, hands empty and with open palms, and looked straight into the eyes of the crazed guy with the knife and talked him down.

I did those things on those occasions, and other things on other occasions, not because I’m brave — because I’m not, I was shit-scared. Not because I’m tough — because I’m not. Not because I needed to prove anything to myself, because — yeah right, like I could prove to anyone that I were brave or tough. I don’t race a bicycle, or swim in the surf, or strip to my Speedos in public. I’m middle-aged, overweight, short-sighted and I’ve got flat feet.

But I did those things then, and I mention them now, because that’s what people do.

At least if they have any character. Any spine.

The problem here, Mr Abbott, is that you don’t seem to ever admit that you’ve ever done anything wrong, let alone take responsibility for it. Fine. You’re a Christian, or so you say. You know when you’ll be called to account, right?

What’s particularly loathesome, however, is your hypocrisy. Last July you said you’d take responsibility for deaths at sea as a result of the Coalition’s policy of turning back the boats. “Obviously I will take responsibility for what happens on my watch,” you said.

But only when they’re at sea? Once they’re on land that’s fine, eh Abbott? Then we can all bash the living shit out of them and let them die in a pool of their own blood and that’s acceptable? Is that what you’re saying?

Even if this were remotely acceptable behaviour in a civilised society — which of course it’s not — you’ve got it arse-about, Abbott. If you kill ‘em at sea, then the bodies sink and the blood washes away. Think it through!

Speaking of arse, do you remember when you told Tony Windsor that you’d do anything except sell your arse to become PM? It seems that includes letting 23-year-old lads get bashed to death. And you worry about “wimps”. What a pathetic, cowardly, desperate grub you are. Craving power, but unable to take any responsibility once you’ve got it.

You’ve even said that you can’t be trusted at your word unless it’s in writing.

The game of politics is riddled with hypocrites, of course, but you and your current batch of visionless seat-warmers in Canberra really does take the biscuit. Every single muppet that warms a green seat on your side of the House lets a turd like you be their “leader”? How noble of them!

Well in my part of the world, Dear Coalition, the only things that follow a turd are a good long piss and the paper I’ve wiped my arse with.

Reza Berati died on your watch, Anthony John Abbott. “Responsibility”, you said? Why don’t you finally become a man and take some? And may Reza Berati be the last.

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  1. Mariana’s avatar

    Superb writing. Thank you.
    May He be the last.
    M

    Reply

  2. John Samuel’s avatar

    Well said Sir! Well said indeed.

    Reply

  3. Colleen McGregor’s avatar

    Wonderful blast! Right on the button Stilgherrian,I feel your anger & pain too the hide & hypocrisy of Abbott & co esp regarding the desperate souls in detention,it’s infuriating & sad at the same time ,may Rezi rest in peace & yes May he be the last!

    Reply

  4. Stilgherrian’s avatar

    Thank you all for your comments so far. It does seem that I’ve struck a chord here. Good.

    I will add one important point…

    Last night, some of the wind-up political tribalists responded with the predictability — and mindlessness — of cuckoo clocks, with comments like “What about the thousands who lost their lives under Labor?” Yes, they can only think of what’s happened in terms of their narrow 18th Century tribal allegiances, and they actually think that “Yeah, well we didn’t kill as many as you did!” is a defence. What filth.

    To make it clear, this is not about party-political tribalism. It is about humanity. I know full well that the doctrine of mandatory “detention” — no, this is not like keeping someone in after school — the mandatory shipping off to a concentration camp of people who, far more often than not, are refugees was invented by Labor.

    Since then, however, both sides of of politics have continued to escalate this pathetic invasion myth. Both sides have tried to outdo each other in sheer bastardry. Neither side can claim the moral high ground here. I spit upon them all.

    But right now the Coalition is in government, and Anthony John Abbott is Prime Minister — albeit one so weak of character and vision that he only seems to work when Peta Credlin has shoved a fistful of fresh D-cells up him. So that’s who needs to take responsibility for what’s happening.

    I’m beyond caring about those who peddle the “Well they started it!” muppetry. Take your kindergarten whining elsewhere. The world has moved on since your hormone-addled student politics days. I care nothing for your little tribes.

    What I care about is who’ll have the decency and strength of character to call a halt to this obscenity. Right now, Abbott is the one in a position to do it. The question is whether he’s up for it, or whether he’ll continue to be a pathetic shell of a human being.

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    1. Goran’s avatar

      Absolutely spot on! I agree with your tribal allegiances comment. This is NOT about whether you vote Labour or liberal. This is about human decency and moral maturity.

      Reply

    2. Sarah Randles’s avatar

      Well said, Stilgherrian. I quite agree, both the Libs and Labor share the blame on this one. As does everyone who isn’t willing to oppose these shameful policies and practices.

      Reply

    3. Clancy’s avatar

      Well said indeed.

      Abbott’s physical ‘toughness’ is an attempt to look as though he has ‘strength’ or substance. In fact it reveals the absence of both.

      Reply

    4. dave’s avatar

      Well said.
      I’d like to say more but as a public servant there’s genuine fear about speaking or writing anything that remotely anti-government – specifically anti-current government.
      This fear extends to possible effects family members who are also in the public service, I’ve worked for the public service for almost 30 years an it’s never been like this before. The brown-nosing that’s now occurring probably in fear of retaliation is now almost a condition of employment. Frank and Fearless have left the country

      Reply

    5. Bernard J.’s avatar

      Huzzah!

      That is all.

      Reply

    6. Greybeard’s avatar

      Well said. Damn the party politics Abbott, just act like a man for once.

      Reply

    7. BC_Melb’s avatar

      “visionless seat-warmers” – Love it.

      Sadlly, I don’t believe Abbott & co are as benign as just being clowns. They are the most dangerous people to have had power in this country in living memory.

      Abbott’s government, who shouted ‘wrecking ball’ in regards to the carbon tax has, in the short space of 5 months, damaged everything they’ve turned their evil eyes to.

      It seemed, on election day, that Australia just had to have it’s own G.W. Bush presidency, but I’m concerned that this goes much further, and will be much harder to correct.

      The things being done in our name, from Manus island to redistribution of wealth upwards, have been fought and overcome by generations before us.

      We can’t have an Abbott government for a full term. Australia will be forever changed for the worse if we do.

      Reply

    8. Nick Orloff’s avatar

      Great post.

      Sadly “decency and strength of character” seem to be in very short supply on every side of politics. Like them or loathe them, Fraser, Hawke & Keating seemed to me to be leaders, not winners of a school popularity contest.

      Reply

    9. Robin’s avatar

      As an ex Mt Compass area person too I must say I am proud of you and your compassionate stance about this truly awful issue. You do our old stamping ground proud.

      My reading of Abbott is that he is a bully, a thug and a lout and as bullies are invariably cowards, all his posturing with boxing, running, swimming and cycling is merely an attempt to gild the lily to camouflage his personal deficiencies. Both major parties have acted despicably in this decades long affair and the sooner both of them admit to that and profess publicly and in great detail their mea culpas and then work productively together to fix this mess the better for our beautiful country.

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    10. Wolfcat’s avatar

      Thanks Mr Abbott, I will proudly wear the “wimp” label.

      If it makes me a wimp to care about those less fortunate than myself, then so be it.

      Locking children up in a detention centre does not make you strong and it is nothing to be proud of, yet the current mindset of our leaders is the opposite.

      This is becoming the next stolen generation.

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    11. ginevra’s avatar

      Agreed!

      Reply

    12. carmel Nunan’s avatar

      Let’s not forget that refugees are dying globally by getting on shonky boats. It is not just Australia. Having said that we do appear to have the least sympathetic government (both sides in relation to refugees). I despair.

      Reply

    13. John Webb’s avatar

      May Reza Be the last.
      Thank you for this.
      Waleed Ally shook me from my torpor last Friday and you have articulated the hypocritical mess that what passes for politics in Australia is in. I, for one, have had enough of the lying, the cruelty, the racism, the dog-whistling, the bully-boys, the lack of questioning, the self-serving and the laziness.
      My silence was despair, but I was wrong – silence is consent and I do not consent to this being done in my name.
      Thanks again Stilgherrian, now you’ve got me pissed off. I suspect my local member is about to get a shitload

      Reply

    14. radnoft pladzitcki’s avatar

      Tony Abbott gave cause for dismay
      With disgusting cold hearted display
      After it was described
      How soldiers had died
      “Shit happens” was all he could say

      Please allow me to offer advice
      To reject this cold piece of ice
      So unless you’re a fool
      And believe Abbott’s drool
      Don’t make the same mistake twice.

      Abbott’s really no man of conviction
      Careless handling of truth an affliction
      Blends lies with the facts
      Credibility lacks
      With his truth being stranger than fiction.

      Mr Abbott’s right into the fray
      Spouting his bullshit each day
      But remember it was he
      Who said on TV
      “You can’t believe all that I say.”

      Tony Abbott who must have his say
      Spouting bullshit in his stilted way
      With his lies and his pose
      Like Pinnochio’s nose
      His ears grow larger each day.

      As PM Abbotts a farce
      And totally out of his class
      Those ears as handles
      Would delight the bum vandals
      Maybe should have been selling his arse

      When Abbott starts in to jeer
      With a leer from ear to ear
      His mouth dribbles shit
      And reminds you a bit
      Of an arsole with bad diarrhoea

      The Liberal Party’s a League
      Of liars, deceit, and intrigue
      Matching Tony’s obsession
      With bullshit and aggression
      And of acting like mad Captain Queeg

      There’s Abbott , Bishop and Pell
      A trio destined for Hell
      And they’ll probably dine
      With Hockey and Pyne
      That’s if Satan can stand the foul smell.

      Tony Abbott incessantly emotes
      With his bleating of “Tow back the boats”
      Like a bloody cracked record
      Echoed by the discord
      Of his team of Liberal goats.

      Holier than thou Tony Abbott
      The liar who mimics a rabbit
      Sings new Hypocrites song
      “Punish those that do wrong”
      While ignoring his own evil habit.

      To gain power was Abbott’s great itch
      And as PM mollycoddle the rich
      But he’ll wake up one morn
      And realise he’s the pawn
      And will always be Murdoch’s bitch.

      With “Look- Ah!” and “So Crystal Clear”
      And grimace from ear to ear
      Abbott thinks he has class
      Rhodes Scholar? – My arse!
      Kick him out or start living in fear.

      Murdoch’s Media use all their means
      To gloss over Abbott’s pipe dreams
      In an effort to paint
      The rogue as a saint
      And support all his evil schemes.

      Each time I see Abbott I curse
      And start in to writing crude verse
      For can’t help being rude
      About that rotten dude
      And his zoo who daily get worse.

      Reply

    15. Jon Pearce’s avatar

      I don’t entirely agree with your story. While it is unacceptable that people die or are injured inside the Abbot government’s “solution”, or even the detention of these people, be they boat people or otherwise, the first line of your story makes a play to evoke sympathy from the readers. “A man – no a youth,” He was 23 years old.
      When the young claim adulthood at the age of 18 years, with all the benefits associated, then they also claim the responsibilities of that title. When you say ” no, a youth” you risk sliding into that abyss of slime and double speak practiced by the political vandals we so despise. Yes, Reza was a young man, but not a youth.

      Reply

    16. Stilgherrian’s avatar

      @Jon Pearce: Actually, Reza Berati was a youth. While there’s no hard and fast rule, in Australian policy circles it’s usually defined as ages 15 to 25. Same for the “youth market” and suchlike.

      As for the line being intended to evoke sympathy, well, yes, that’s how one makes arguments more powerful — by using language that triggers emotions as well as logic. This piece is a political polemic. Why would I write with one hand tied behind my back?

      I don’t see what being an adult and having “responsibilities” has to do with being beaten to death with a hunk of wood.

      Reply

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