Equipped with European Appliances

Julia_Gillard.jpeg

As Gilly hits the phones to guage support, the tortured politics of the ALP’s attitude towards Gilly’s marital status etc. is examined in a feature in The Australian. Among other outrages, apparently her kitchen is too clean. I wish I could say the same about mine. The Oz in its editorial (which does say these factors are irrelevant) refers to her “pristine kitchen” and infers this means that she is “a stranger to the domestic mess of family life”. Hello? Hello? Maybe she cleaned her kitchen because tv cameras were going to be there. And, guess what, I can attest that you don’t need kids to have a messy kitchen. But I don’t expect this issue to come up if I apply for a job, and strangely, when I was active in politics, it was never something I was attacked over. Does anyone care that Mike Rann is single? Could all this be because Gilly’s a woman? You get that impression with comments in the feature from the (fortunately) anonymous Labor MP that “the Australian people will not cop a left-wing sheila.”

Gillard dismisses such comments as the “politics of the absurd” and argues that all leadership contenders should be judged on their merits alone.

I reckon the Australian people are just about fed up with gormless Labor MPs actually. A “God-awful mess” as Ruddy put it – Gilly can help restore it to pristine cleanness!

You go Gilly, you good thing!

ELSEWHERE: Tim Dunlop’s pretty unimpressed with Ruddy, Flutey thinks Ruddy squibbed it, miss piss asks “would anyone (other than the Women’s Weekly) give a crap what Kim Beazley’s kitchen looked like?” Meanwhile, in the meeja, Michelle Grattan thinks Ruddy may have been in third place and Gilly is being urged to run.

UPDATE: Andrew Bartlett’s discovered a citizen who’s worried that Julia might be a Commo as she went to Vietnam for her hols. The question arises – is the floor under the bed clean for when the reds drop in to hide?

FURTHER UPDATE: Susan Ryan in The Australian and Natasha Cica in the SMH are highly critical of perceptions of Gillard.

AUSTRALIA DAY UPDATE: Gilly’s not running, so it’s the Beazer.

About Mark Bahnisch

Mark Bahnisch is a sociologist and is the founder of this blog. He has an undergraduate degree in history and politics from UQ, and postgraduate qualifications in sociology, industrial relations and political economy from Griffith and QUT. He has recently been awarded his PhD through the Humanities Program at QUT. Mark's full bio is on this page.
This entry was posted in Politics - national, Society, Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink.
Subscribe
Notify of
guest
40 Comments
Oldest
Newest Most Voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Polly
Polly
2022 years ago

If her kitchen had been a mess they would have been wondering why she didn’t clean it up before she went overseas on holiday.

Jason Soon
2022 years ago

Amazing!

Rex
Rex
2022 years ago

Gormless Labor MPs and Faceless factional bosses.

I wish these cretins could be outed. Surely the blogosphere can help with this? An on-line repository, a refererence where everyone can submit their views as to which Labor apparatchiks weild power way above their station, or which MPs are just jellybacks serving out their time?

C.L.
2022 years ago

I dunno Mark. If a single never-married bloke of 43 was running for the top job, the reaction would be much the same – probably worse in fact.

Peter Kemp
Peter Kemp
2022 years ago

Nah CL, the media would be flat out spying on who he dated, like they did to Pierre Trudeau.

James Farrell
James Farrell
2022 years ago

The tidiness of the kitchen isn’t an issue. She probably doesn’t use it much.

The real problem is mixing 1950s kitchen furniture with a slate floor. This doesn’t work, and it betrays a person who wants to have it both ways.

Geoff Honnor
Geoff Honnor
2022 years ago

“I dunno Mark. If a single never-married bloke of 43 was running for the top job, the reaction would be much the same – probably worse in fact.”

Interesting point. Count the number of never-married, middle-aged guys in the ALP caucus. The issue here isn’t principally about gender, it’s about perceptions of what the punters will accept on the “departure from the norm” gradient. Gillard’s gender counts against her on that score because no federal ALP leader has been a woman. Her marital status also features negatively because the expectation is that a middle-aged pollie will be coupled – or at least previously coupled and preferably with identifiable offspring. On the plus side of the ledger, it apppears that she’s not a lesbian :)

An unmarried guy of the same age and abilities who was, say, openly gay would be perceived as way more scary. Indeed, a never married guy of 43 would automatically be assumed to be gay. Homosexuality provides a much greater departure fro m the norm challenge.

Mark Bahnisch
Mark Bahnisch
2022 years ago

I agree Geoff, and it’s sad that it’s so. Dunstan of course was gay, but he was married when he was SA Premier, wasn’t he?

There’s been a gay Premier of Queensland from the conservative side as well – married with kids.

Dave Ricardo
Dave Ricardo
2022 years ago

Amanda Vanstone doesn’t have kids, and she’s married, so she’s got no excuse.

Same with Bob Carr. (Didn’t John Hewson -family man extraordinaire- once have a dig at Carr for bring childless?)

Gillard can’t win on this one. If she was to get married and start a family (though at 43, it’s highly unlikely) the same critics would say she was doing it just to further her career.

Geoff Honnor
Geoff Honnor
2022 years ago

“There’s been a gay Premier of Queensland from the conservative side as well – married with kids.”

Joh!!?? :))

Geoff Honnor
Geoff Honnor
2022 years ago

“Amanda Vanstone doesn’t have kids, and she’s married, so she’s got no excuse.”

Married-without-kids certainly registers on the departure from the norm-o-meter but less so than “never-married and never likely to, if you get my drift, mate.”

The jibes about Bob Carr being childless are actually code for “he’s bookish, doesn’t like pies and can’t drive so he’s he’s obviously a poof in a marriage of convenience.” His continuing inability to produce at least 1.25 offspring for inspection is just final validation.

Mark Bahnisch
Mark Bahnisch
2022 years ago

Wasn’t Joh, but I shouldn’t say any more.

yellowvinyl
yellowvinyl
2022 years ago

if Gilly was a lesbian, I’d marry her but sadly for me, it looks like Jason has a better chance of wooing her :(

Geoff Honnor
Geoff Honnor
2022 years ago

“if Gilly was a lesbian, I’d marry her”

You’d have to go to Canada, yell. She voted not to allow it Oz :)

yellowvinyl
yellowvinyl
2022 years ago

along with the rest of the Labor Party, Geoff :(

on the other hand, she’d probably be elected in Canada and I could be first lady and make sure the kitchen in the equivalent of the Lodge is always a mess…

Homer Paxton
Homer Paxton
2022 years ago

Gillard was good when confronting Ruddock indeed she made him look foolish.
She has been reasonable in Health. She must take responsibility for that policy being seen as a whitlamite scheme instead of saving money.

She is very good in Parliament. This is why she needs to be deputy leader.

given her inexperience in Parliament it is fanciful that anyone could think she could be leader. It is true she is one of the very few people in the leftwing faction to show potential leadership qualities but that is mainly because she is a rightwinger in a leftwing faction.

Dave Ricardo
Dave Ricardo
2022 years ago

Speaking of Canada, they had a female PM in the 90s. I forget her name, and she wasn’t a great success, leading to her party to total destruction (I think they were left with 2 seats after an election) – but what was her situation, hubby and kiddy-wise?

Stephen Hill
Stephen Hill
2022 years ago

in Canada that wipe-out wasn’t the result of a certain tax-reform – some sort of Goods and Service Tax. Or is this more recent history, because the current liberal government in Canada has held power for some time, although they almost let it slip at the last election.

Fyodor
2022 years ago

Kim Campbell was her name – a twice-divorced Tory. Lost the 1993 election in a massive landslide that nearly wiped out the Progressive Conservative [!] party in Canada, though this may have been due to the stink left behind by Mulroney. No kids AFAIK.

Homer Paxton
Homer Paxton
2022 years ago

Her great clame to fame was to be photographed behind the flag looking as though she was naked.

I believe she was justice minister at the time.

The lanslide was due to Brian Mulroney the deposed leader who introduced their GST.

Jason Soon
2022 years ago

“a twice-divorced Tory. Lost the 1993 election in a massive landslide that nearly wiped out the Progressive Conservative [!] party ”

Only in Canada. It’s what the US would be like if it were made up solely of Blue States

observa
observa
2022 years ago

The vast majority of voters would probably take the view that parenting a few totally egocentric and selfish offspring, is almost a mandatory qualification for the job of PM. At the very least, if modestly successful as a parent, it proves you can handle anything life can throw at you. I guess I couldn’t really consider someone like Natasha Stott Despoja real leadership material until she faced the trials and tribulations of motherhood. Until then she was just another spoiled uni brat.

Gillard will always face this handicap in the eyes of the voters. She could turn out to be another Elizabethan Queen of course, but Liz had the great advantage of inheriting the job. Perhaps like Liz, if she can’t do anything with that hair, she should try a wig.

Peter Kemp
Peter Kemp
2022 years ago

Geoff H, DaveR; Amanda Thirtystone does have an excuse, pachyderms have ultra long gestation periods.

Guido
2022 years ago

This issue raises an important point about our elected representatives democratic system.

All this talk of Gilliard being ‘single’ and ‘childless’ comes out from an underlying belief that elections are decided by families with kids and mortgages that may perceive Gilliard as a person who would be incapable of identifying with their needs.

I haven’t seen any reliable analysis. But the hunch journos have is that because the ALP lost the ‘mortgage belt’ a leader like Gilliard would be unelectable.

But this raises a more pertinent point. Is Australia’s politics and policy decided solely from what is perceived these voters want? So if the majority of these voters are perceived ro be against gays, muslims, and single mums do we have to pander to them?

It is a delicate balance, because as I state in Webdiary at nauseam the ALP cannot go all guns blazing concentrating on reconcilaition, refugees, republic, indigenous affairs etc. because while these are issues near to my heart they are marginal to many voters in the outer areas of Australian cities, and may in fact be somewhat hostile to them. But on the other hand I don’t want out parties to be hostage to a world view which may be somewhat limited.

Ken Parish
Ken Parish
2022 years ago

“The real problem is mixing 1950s kitchen furniture with a slate floor. This doesn’t work, and it betrays a person who wants to have it both ways.”

I haven’t seen the print version of the Oz feature on Gillard, so I don’t know about 1950s furniture or slate floors. But if true, it’s certainly a serious offence against good taste. Retro-chic in interior decoration is so five minutes ago anyway, but if you’re going to embrace it you need to do it properly. Black and white checked linoleum is really the only option for a 1950s kitchen.

At least Beazley is an unreconstructed slob with no pretence to any sense of style at all. What his kitchen would look like, especially with Bomber actually in it, is so gross as to not even bear thinking about.

Dave Ricardo
Dave Ricardo
2022 years ago

” What his kitchen would look like, especially with Bomber actually in it, is so gross as to not even bear thinking about.”

Beazley in a suit has been described as looking like a ton of potatoes in a two ton sack., so there’s your answer. In Beazley’s kitchen you’d find two tons of potato peelings.

yellowvinyl
yellowvinyl
2022 years ago

at least we won’t have to worry about being spammed by Prime Ministerial offspring if Gilly makes it one day…

Geoff Honnor
Geoff Honnor
2022 years ago

“At least Beazley is an unreconstructed slob with no pretence to any sense of style at all. What his kitchen would look like, especially with Bomber actually in it, is so gross as to not even bear thinking about.”

Kim has Suzy Annuss in his kitchen so it’s probably super-chic. That’s kind of the point. Kim doesn’t need to worry about photospread kitchen integrity because Suzy’s got it sussed. The suspicion is that Julia doesn’t give a stuff about whether it’s OK to mix Smeg appliances with a Socialist Realism kitchen table and a Ken Done pot-rack and that’s clearly a real worry in a female Prime Ministerial aspirant – what is she up to? Probably Thai take out and VB. She should marry one of those Queer Eye For The Straight Guy dudes and get the whole thing sorted.

yellowvinyl
yellowvinyl
2022 years ago

a marriage of convenience to a queer eye boy! you may be onto something there, Geoff :)

yellowvinyl
yellowvinyl
2022 years ago

Carson being the most marriageble… Lawsy would be a bit snarky though…

James Hamilton
James Hamilton
2022 years ago

“So if the majority of these voters are perceived ro be against gays, muslims, and single mums do we have to pander to them?”

Are they? If they are, then yes you must if you want to win government. Luckily for you they aren’t.

“It is a delicate balance, because as I state in Webdiary at nauseam the ALP cannot go all guns blazing concentrating on reconcilaition, refugees, republic, indigenous affairs etc. because while these are issues near to my heart they are marginal to many voters in the outer areas of Australian cities, and may in fact be somewhat hostile to them. But on the other hand I don’t want out parties to be hostage to a world view which may be somewhat limited.”

Guido I don’t want to be glib, facetious, or condescending because I know how much it annoys me to be at the end of it,but you are living though a period where your views are not those of the greater electorate. Would you say the current government has not gone quiet on indeigenous affairs or refugees and believes that the electorate considers these marginal issues? The refugees may beg to differ for starters. I don’t believe for a minute the electorate is ambivalent to these issues, they are very much engaged, it’s just they don’t concur with your views. There is a difference.

If you find a world view that differs to your own, it is natural to think it is limited, or least I find it so, but it is bad idea to describe it as such, if you are trying to convince anyone. Your deliberate vagueness eg. “many voters in the outer areas of Australian cities” would indicate that you might be aware of this already. We both knew what you really meant but at least you did not spell it out.

suburbia
suburbia
2022 years ago

“The vast majority of voters would probably take the view that parenting a few totally egocentric and selfish offspring, is almost a mandatory qualification for the job of PM.”

Given the also widely held view that the majority of the ‘married with kids male political types’ wander of to Canberra and leave the bulk of the parenting to their wives, if voters really were to demand the above mentioned mandatory qualification, then there are very few on either side of the house including the current PM who actually would meet that.

Fyodor
2022 years ago

“She should marry one of those Queer Eye For The Straight Guy dudes and get the whole thing sorted.”

Isn’t one of those blokes supposed to be an in-the-closet [?] breeder? There might be a chance for a Gilly rugrat after all!

Geoff Honnor
Geoff Honnor
2022 years ago

“Isn’t one of those blokes supposed to be an in-the-closet [?] breeder? There might be a chance for a Gilly rugrat after all!”

She could pick the kids up on ebay – to tone in with the kitchen decor. Saves time.

David Tiley
2022 years ago

The really foul kitchen thought is those flats that MPs are said to rent in gangs.

Just let yourself imagine…. Beazley and Bob Collins sharing a flat….

Personally I believe that Beezer and Amanda V. are having a pachyderm love child in very slow motion. All will one day be revealed, on the floor of the House.

Dave Ricardo
Dave Ricardo
2022 years ago

” Just let yourself imagine…. Beazley and Bob Collins sharing a flat….”

Let’s keep Bob Collins out of the discussion.

Ken Parish
Ken Parish
2022 years ago

Excellent idea, Dave. In fact I’ll delete any further comments in that direction (for legal reasons as well as good taste).

Mark Bahnisch
Mark Bahnisch
2022 years ago

I suspect David was referring to the former Senator’s girth but I get your point, Ken.

trackback
2022 years ago

These Google Searchers Vote

Over the past week or two I’ve had a bunch of people come to this humble site, apparently looking for dirt on Julia Gillard. I’ve had the Google search phrases “Julia Gillard” over and over again, I’ve had “Julia Gillard Unmarried”, “Julia Gill…

trackback
2022 years ago

Bizarre notions of unity

Amongst all the coverage, it’s been particularly sad to see Julia Gillard’s suitability seriously being questioned due to her being single and childless! Frankly, if you’re going to be totally cold and ruthless about it, not having children or a part…