Abbott’s Agenda: This is Just the Beginning
Recently I’ve been watching the intriguing French TV show “The Returned” on SBS 2 (Tuesday nights at 8:30pm).
Set in a small French mountain town, a number of dead people suddenly reappear, apparently alive and unaware that they have been missing and deceased. There’s the teenage road accident victim Camille, suicidal bridegroom Simon, a small boy named “Victor” who was murdered by burglars, and Serge, a serial killer. They try to resume their lives, attempting to reconnect with families and loved ones, however painful memories from the past make this problematic as well as the challenges the families face in explaining the sudden reappearance of their loved ones to the broader public.
For all concerned it quickly becomes a gripping exercise secrecy, lies and duplicity, while all the time trying to maintain a façade of normality.
It’s a bit like how the Australian people must feel about the Abbott Government. They voted for Tony Abbott but instead inherited the spectre of John Howard (on steroids).
“Conservatives” as they are known, tend to favour traditions from the past, and frown upon feel good do-gooder concepts such as “equality” or anti-discrimination. Theirs is a world fraught with imminent danger lurking at every corner, where potential threats to the “world order” must be neutered or at the very least monitored under CCTV.
And this includes you. The great unwashed who fail to appreciate your many blessings in the form of taxes, escalating costs of housing, extortionate power bills and high youth unemployment.
Graduate with honours if your parents can afford it, and you might just avoid a stint working at Burger King. For the rest of us, particularly those leaving the education system without formal university qualifications, the future is pretty fucking dire.
It’s little wonder then, that in many Western societies disaffected youth with little prospects are now saying enough is enough. While fat cat politicians and their corporate sponsors regularly make the headlines over million dollar rorts and taxpayer funded scams with little accountability and the opportunity to repay monies to avoid culpability, the rest of us are supposed to just suck it up.
Back in Australia, you’d be forgiven for thinking that the Federal Opposition is missing in action. While the Abbott wrecking ball continues unabated, targeting World Heritage forests for logging and destruction, dredging at Great Barrier Reef, and slashing spending on Health and Education, Federal Opposition Leader Bill Shorten remains oddly impotent.
Perhaps he’s yet to realise that politically, he doesn’t seem to have a pulse.