Straits Times Nails It, Simon flails It.

Singapore’s Straits Times gives the Abu Bakar Bashir trial outcome the sort of finessed analysis that eludes the crapped-out, where’s-the-fuckin’- handle-gone gestetner, that is the PR vehicle of the alleged Leader of the Australian opposition.

You could imagine the briefing Crean got: ” …….so…you don’t want to criticise the sentence Simon because the aspirationals won’t be happy unless you’ve got the guy’s balls on a stick and you don’t want to go there because that would really piss off the innnerurbanati because you know, Bustier..is it Bustier? No..Basher, Bashire?…no, no, Bashir… he’s kind of like a Teacher and A Religious Seeker of Truth and everything – sort of like the Dalai Lama in a funny Indonny sort of way – and the US is ultimately responsible anyway …. So, whack Howard because he’ll just go for the lowest common denominator and criticise the shortness of the sentence…You know, it’s the whole xenophobia, hate refugees thing, turn it all back to white picket fences and tell Asians how to run their affairs thing. Rise above it Simon! Rise above it!”

So Simon did:

“I think it’s inappropriate for politicians to be seeking to interfere without having heard all of the evidence in outcomes the judicial proceedings conclude upon,” he said, face screwed up in that straining-unsuccessfully-at-stool look that has persuaded an entire nation that he’s full of it.

Unfortunately, fresh-faced Kevin Rudd, modulated tones to the fore, was saying something rather different:

“I find it unbelievable that we could have such a light sentence handed down on a matter as serious as this,” Mr Rudd said.

All Simon needs now is for Mark Latham to deliver one of his “I’ve got one hand round my scrotum and tugging ” speeches

“This Mrs Megawati, she’s the worst President in Indonesian history. She couldn’t organise a piss-up in the Green Valley RSL. If John Howard had any guts he’d be sending a firm message to her about where Australia stands etc.”

Nasi Goreng anyone…?

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Rex
Rex
2021 years ago

Geoff,

I think your comments are a tad unfair. Another Singapore times article shows how Howard’s appeal to the lowest common denominator immediately reverberates in the region. “Vice-President Hamzah Haz yesterday also defended the court’s verdict. Foreign governments should stop meddling in Indonesia’s affairs by commenting on the decision, he said”. An undisguised swipe at Howard.

As Brionowski made clear it is the thuggish and unsubtle politics like that demonstrated by Howard’s comment that undermines our longer term interests in the region. I don’t see for example in the same issue of the Straits Times, any comment from Singaporean politicians. They appear to know how to play the game.

Crean’s comments are in fact more considered and more strategic that you give him credit for.

Rex

Geoff Honnor
Geoff Honnor
2021 years ago

“Considered” perhaps Rex. “Strategic” looks a bit of a strech against the diametrically different view offered by his Foreign Affairs spokesperson.

What was “thuggish” about Howard’s observation? I must have missed that bit.

BTW, Vice-President Hamzah Haz was previously a political ally and supporter of Ali Bakar Bashir. He famously visited him in Solo to state his support for him.

wenbo
wenbo
2021 years ago

Yesterday it was David Oldfield and his unspeakable parrot acts, today Simon Crean’s haemorrhoids and Latham’s attenuated testicles…..

This has to stop, Geoff: its more than this tea-slurping, centrist, neo-pseud can handle.

Ken Parish
Ken Parish
2021 years ago

Neo-pseud? Please explain.

wenji
wenji
2021 years ago

neo-pseud(onymous)

Geoff Honnor
Geoff Honnor
2021 years ago

You know Wendy, if I’d thought about, I could probably have worked Oldfield’s dead parrot into Simon’s act…….Just goes to show how opportunities are missed when you’re in a hurry.

woodsy
woodsy
2021 years ago

I agree with Rex. The last thing Australian Government wants is to prove to our neighbours that we don’t understand the necessity for them to keep ‘face’ when our representatives comment on their actions. Consequently, it’s important to keep Mark’s nuts in his undies, Ruddy to mumble something incomprehensible about improving security in the region and for Simple to adopt a statesman-like air (if that’s at all possible) and say he agrees with the Indonesion position (whatever that is). Howard can be guaranteed to make a fool of himself (and his fellow Australians) whatever he says; that man couldn’t understand the niceties of diplomacy if you gave them to him in one syllable words.

Rex
Rex
2021 years ago

Point taken Geoff. I would like ‘Strategic’ struck from the record.

Incidently. I happened to see Simon Crean last week in Melbourne when he addressed members of the Jewish community regarding their concerns about some of the ALP back bencher comments.

What struck me was after his speech, which was workmanlike (in style) was when he took some fairly agressive questions from the floor. His responses took on a totally different character, a real intesity and depth of feeling burst forth, which is never seen on camera.

He is clearly an earnest man, his attempts at humour mostly fall flat, but I have to say, If the shackles of the ALP spin doctors were loosened I think we’d see a totally different character. I’d like to see a bit more “Crash or Crash through”, rather than the slow withering on the vine that we see now.

Rex

Geoff Honnor
Geoff Honnor
2021 years ago

My point in blogging this topic was to express despair about Crean’s leadership vis a vis his comment crossover with Rudd but I bow to the democracy of the Comments marketplace and in so doing, copy this extract from todays Jakarta Post online –

“Howard said he was in no position to criticize the Indonesian government and management of the trial.

“On the one hand I am pleased that the Indonesian justice process appears to have worked,” he told ABC radio. “He has been found guilty of certain offenses. He has been given a jail term. That is good.

“On the other hand, because many of us here in Australia believe that he was at least the spiritual leader of JI and therefore at least knew about the attack in Bali, we are disappointed that he wasn’t convicted on that and didn’t get a longer sentence.”

Howard said there was always a doubt whether Ba’asyir would be convicted over his role in JI as there was only one piece of direct evidence, which came from a Singaporean man by video link.

“It is a difficult call for Australia,” he said. “On the one hand we are very understandably sensitive about anybody who we think was associated with the Bali attack.”

Now what on earth is “foolish” or “thuggish” about his reported observations?

bargarz
2021 years ago

What was “thuggish” about Howard’s observation? I must have missed that bit.
It’s obviously the accent.
Howard was talking in jagged Strine.

Geoff Honnor
Geoff Honnor
2021 years ago

That’d be it Barg.