Sunday, July 18, 2010

Erections, executions and other democratic phrases

If you’re not from Namibia, you’d probably wonder why I’m mixing these words together.  What do erections have in common with democracy, except for Bill Clinton?

In Namibia a common tendency for indigenous people is to mix up their “l”s with their “r”s.  So it is quite common to hear a news reporter referring to “national erections”, when actually meaning “national elections”.

Anyway, Down Under we had some interesting political developments recently.  A few weeks ago, our Prime Minister was unceremoniously politically assassinated by his own Labor Party.  Apparently he is travelling the world to look for a new job, preferably one where people like to listen to long boring spin talk.

Now a redhead with a horrible Aussie strine accent has taken over.  It was really not fun listening to Kevin Rudd lecturing to the masses, but this lady is a step in the wrong direction if you ask me.  I just can’t get myself to listen to her squeaky narratives.

The redhead has now called a national erection, and on 21 August all “Strayljuhns will be cahstin them votes”.

Experience “New millennium Western democracy” in it’s finest form:  two parties logging it out in the media - twittering, tweeting, blogging and facebooking, crapping and belching anywhere and everywhere.  Not even your own homepage is sacred anymore.  I’ve never seen anything like it. 

I’m used to electioneering Namibian style, where posters hang on telephone poles, and Kosie Pretorius stuffs people’s mailboxes with his party’s pamphlets.  The NBC TV channel would give each party a few minutes on air and they would compete to see who could offer the most pathetic-looking person to beg on their behalf.  Normally a previously disadvantaged deaf-mute albino female with only one leg and no teeth is a good spokes-person for your party, as it shows how much you value their contribution to society.  The more pathetic your representative is, the better party you are.  Apparently.

Of course the ruling party in Namibia always wins with a 75% majority, so why would you tweet, twitter and belch anyway?

But Down Under they do it with style.  Technology is used to reach the dumbfounded masses.  Everyone tweets, twitters and blogs like a madman.  Or woman.

The opposition is lead by a guy called Tony Abbot – a real straight-shooter who constantly needs to explain himself after he mouthed off some politically incorrect comments to the media, while wearing budgie smugglers.  His opponent is a godless unmarried childless redheaded welsh-born lady who just knifed her predecessor in the back while he was still PM.

You can just imagine what this contest looks like in the media.  The comments and counter-comments border on slander and outright insults on a daily basis.  Great stuff!

I love democracy.

The redhead stated a few weeks ago that she did not have any intention of taking over from old Kev.  She said the following, among other things:

May 18 "There's more chance of me becoming the full-forward for the Dogs (Western Bulldogs AFL team) than there is any chance of a change in the Labor Party."

May 18 "I know we’ll be welcoming Jessica [Watson] back to Sydney this weekend after her round the world epic feat. I tell you, I think there’s more chance of me going round the world sailing solo a dozen times than this chatter in the media becoming anything more than that."

If "Steven Spielberg rang me from Hollywood and asked me to star opposite Brad Pitt in a movie, would I do it? Well, I'd be a little bit tempted but you know what, I don't reckon Steven Spielberg is going to give me a call."

May 26 "If I exit politics able to look at the scoreboard and say this is what I did as minister for education, this is what I did as minister for workplace relations, that's enough for me. That's beyond the wildest expectations I had for myself when I started this journey."

June 10 "You may as well ask me am I anticipating a trip to Mars."

June 18 "Look, I know there's been all this breathless media speculation about leadership questions. There's not speculation in my mind."

She became PM on 24 June…