What more can be said about the state of disarray within our federal government?
It has become a theatre of the absurd with a plot line akin to the Days of Our Lives saga. Unfortunately, the events depicted in our daily media are real and the characters are in charge of our nation.
Like every compelling soap opera there are returning players who were previously presumed dead. That role currently ‘stars’ Kevin Rudd, who represents as close to everlasting life as we’ll likely ever see in politics. Even his own team are wondering what special implement is needed to stop him from rising again.
Then there are the characters whose imminent death lingers through episode after episode. Viewers tune in in equal measure, hoping for a miraculous recovery or confirmation of their demise. No one fills this role in modern politics quite like Julia Gillard. There seems to be no doubt within the electorate that she will eventually be put to the political sword but it seems there are a few more scenes to film before that happens.
No good (bad?) soap is complete without the required villains. These are represented in this high political farce by the faceless men. Feared and loathed by most in their own party, few dare risk their ire through failing to pay appropriate homage. After all, when trouble strikes the main players turn to these men to save their skin.
And then there are the bit players; the nodding dolls who stand resolutely behind whomever they are told to for the television cameras, indicating their furious agreement. Sometimes they get to say a few lines of their own but their contribution it is generally limited to the state of parliamentary beef stroganoff or ‘lobotomised zombies’.
Of course, there are the obligatory extras. Sometimes these feature members of the public, carefully chosen from the Actors Equity Union membership list who can be relied upon not to steal the ‘on location’ scene from the main stars - think dining with sympathetic mummy bloggers rather than the punters at the Rooty Hill RSL.
Naturally these outside studio shots are fraught with danger lest a rogue extra stumble onto set and say something unscripted that’s not approved by the caucus focus group. Unfortunately for the publicists involved with this political soap opera, these ‘reality star’ moments are captured by independent cinematographers and can rarely be edited out of existence.
Now that we have the players, it seems that the plot takes care of itself. Surely no one who actually wrote a script along the lines of what we have borne witness to could ever be taken seriously.
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Senator Cory Bernardi a Senator for South Australia.