A pollie lied and actually got pinged for it! Barry O’Farrell gives punters Easter cheer: @YaThinkN comments


What happens in the cockpit, stays in the cockpit.


Okay we all know that Sydney is the centre of the Universe; just ask every major paper and the TV stations. This week has been particularly bad for those that are not fortunate enough to live in the most important city in the country – yes, note use of sarcasm font there – with all the news being ICAC, royals, Badgerys Creek second airport, and finally the fall of Barry O’Farrell. Even the bloody NRL had only Sydney games on Good Friday.

Now, being Easter and living in a pretty nice Queensland tourism spot, we have a full house of rellies and friends, so of course there has been a lot of chatter over drinks. With the plethora of Sydney-centric news, no-one was particularly interested in what the media thought was important, except of course to comment on Kate’s choice of frock, as you do. Until, that is, it came to Barry O’Farrell …

See, people who follow politics, the press gallery etcetera all think that politics really matters, it is important in our lives and they assume we are all on-board with this narrative.

Personally I have found that the average punter could not care less about politics until they are impacted by a particular decision. Even the odd person who does follow a political party often does so because of generational voting or it suits their purposes due to the likes of business networking, deep down, they don’t really care. A pub poll consensus is that all pollies are as bad as each other.

So this is where Barry O’Farrell’s fall from grace is fascinating. Fact is, the vast majority of the great unwashed outside of NSW don’t have a clue who Barry O’Farrell is, nor care. Well, prior to his spectacular nose-dive that is. Now, everyone in the nation knows his name and, as has been commented on Twitter, it is quite unedifying the glee that is being shown in regard to his downfall, and this celebration has not just been ALP supporters.

In the politically interested segment of society whole forests have been felled with news items explaining and analysing just what happened to bring down old mate Barry. Everything from Government cheerleader Paul Sheehan’s “Barry O’Farrell’s lapse no reason for the guillotine”, The Australian of course is calling for ICAC’s head now that a few Libs have been caught in it’s web, to more balanced pieces like The Guardian’s Lenore Taylor’s “Labor and Liberals both struck down with NSW disease” (though the rest of the nation would disagree that it is only a NSW disease). The commentary is overwhelming: Was he backstabbed? Was it an inside job? Is ICAC a star chamber? Did Barry need to resign? I could fill a page on the angles of analysis in regard to the Premier of the most populous state in this nation’s resignation.

But you know what? Out in punter land where the plebs are too busy actually living, raising families, working and lucky enough to see 5 minutes of the nightly news as they yell at the kids to have baths while making dinner, don’t care less really ‘why’ Barry had to fall on his sword. They don’t care if he was Liberal or Labor, they don’t care if he was a ‘good bloke’, they only care that a pollie lied and actually got pinged for it.

Seriously, that is what they care about. The press gallery and fans of politics all say that ‘the people’ have their ‘say’ at elections. Fact is, they don’t. They don’t really feel they have any choices, it will normally come down to who they dislike least being voted in. Most feel that both sides of politics are only in it for themselves and can’t be trusted. Regardless of what we are told prior to an election they will always backflip. There will always be a technicality as to why they did not really lie to us. The weasel words used are extensive and the average Joe Blow and Jill Dill just turn off as they know the pollies will just bamboozle us with more bulldust as to why a particular promise has not really been broken, how they did not really lie to us. Point is, Joe and Jill smell the bullshit, but their eyes just glaze over, worse, they expect it.

As my dear departed dad used to say: “Well, what do you expect, they are politicians, they couldn’t lie straight in bed if they tried”.

Rarely, does a politician lie and actually get pinged for it. Rarely does a politician actually pay a price for a lie. Hence the downfall of Barry O’Farrell is gold out there in the pubs, barbecues and Easter family get-togethers around the nation. Punters of all persuasions are breaking the golden rule of family harmony – never discuss politics – united in their glee that a politician has lied and, for once, didn’t get away with it.

Look, Barry might be a lovely bloke, he might honestly have forgotten he got the expensive plonk. Sadly for Barry, we punters don’t care how decent he might be.

We know politicians get expensive gifts. We know they get fêted and fawned upon. We know they get their freebies to the corporate boxes at sporting events. We see them living it up with all those niceties in life that we punters can only watch with jealousy, gnashing our teeth with the awareness that we are actually paying for their bloody time while they are enjoying themselves. To add insult to injury we all know that these pollies haven’t been invited to the footy grand final etcetera, out of the kindness of a businessman’s or organisations heart, we know it is so they can influence them, that is the system.

So, unedifying and crass as it may be, when a politician, a Premier no less, gets caught lying and has to stand down because of it we cheer with glee. The fact that a very expensive drop that we punters will never enjoy tasting is at the heart of the lie, well my friends, that is just icing on the cake.

Some free advice for you Prime Minister Abbott, we punters smell blood in the water, we have finally had a sniff of a politician having to accept the consequences of his actions (LIES) just like we in the real world have to AND we liked it!

P.S. Interesting side note: Top three pollies in the nation, PM Abbott, Treasurer Hockey and new NSW Premier Baird are all silvertails from the North Shore of Sydney. In Rugby League parlance we have a common mantra “Anyone But Manly” #JustSaying ;-)

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  1. The Rum Corps never left NSW, they just started drinking Grange Hermitage , Well done Noely

  2. James Packer may have a job lined up for Barry O’Farrell at Sydney’s second casino for all the accomplishments that he achieved whilst in office like the speedy approval of Sydney’s second casino.

  3. More than like it, Noely – Luv it. A promised peek inside the Lib Party Crypt where Mike Carlton insists, live Shonks, Touts, Spongers, Leeches, Bludgers, Shysters, and Corridor whisperers
    As a bloke who lived thru the Joh era in Qld, this ICAC inquiry brings back memories. Like many from that era, Joh’s Govt opened many relatively political innocent eyes as to how politics and big business coexist. Influential Spivs and Unelected Sleeve- tuggers- More Faceless Men, but this current lot with Fob pockets.
    O’Farrell’s predicament and his swift act of Sepuku was in impressive contrast to what the average Jack and Jill has seen more recently from his Federal colleagues. Indeed, our current PM’s ‘Baz’s Badge of Honour ” sought to entrap reflective glory – even before BOF’s political intestines had properly cooled.
    That’s the same PM mind, who had earlier been forced to reimburse non legitimate expenses, the quantum of which would take the average Punter almost a decade to legitimately earn. It’s the utterances of the same PM where only the truly gifted numerates are able to keep count of his outright lies, semi- permanent obfuscations and Peta’s intensely coached double speak. Not surprisingly, much of the populace is not best pleased.

    The high profile Lib party Donor, ex AWH executive, Nick Di Girolamo is described by those that know him personally, as Liberal Party Krypton, and a walking pestilence. Given Nick’s central role in the NSW Liberal Party Machine, essentially the Homeland of our erstwhile PM and Treasurer, asbestos fireproof walls are no doubt sprouting like mushrooms, but nevertheless smoke must be filling some nostrils. There is also the small matter of Hansard having already recorded our PM’s denial of his having ever met the toxic Mr Girolamo.
    Even more Libs { Et Tu Brute- Hartcher,} Webber, Spence and Nats Hodginson, are yet to front ICAC. Each has been in earnest conversation with the said Mr Girolamo. Punters should also soon see the Luminosity enhanced Arthur Sinodinos re appearance.
    NSW Govts have a long standing and regular, albeit reluctant, tradition, of allowing the Unwashed a glimpse into their Roosts.Those with a sense of history may dispute, given The Rum Corp, Bob Aitken, Nifty Neville Wran, Nick Greiner { on a technicality} that the Wholesomeness of Baz’s Associates, is in the main, an exception, rather than the Rule.

    The young NSW Baird will not be able to extinguish the promised ICAC sparks. The potential bushfire will fascinate otherwise disinterested Punters who will be, almost without exception, grateful for the entertainment . Should the flames spread along The Insular Peninsula., well……

    Sadly, the QLD Punters won’t be afforded the same opportunity. The April ’14 neutering of Qld’s CMC and the attaching financial penalties, has clearly been created to deter all but the State’s aggrieved wealthy. The ever thoughtful QLD Premier Newman has however ensured CMC’s workload can now be more than capably handled by the State’s only watchdog’s harried, skeleton staff.

    Irrespective, many long suffering, indifferent OZ voters are about to be entertained. Should the winds blow East to West, many, many more will be absolutely ecstatic, not necessarily with the body count, but with the Karma

  4. Thanks for your comments Noely. Some Pollies spend the public purse on their own foibles. However I know a couple who are beyond reproach, here in Q’ld.

  5. Noely you have hit th nail on the head, pack of bludging money soaking parasites, many of whom stood for politics with the best of motives have become tainted, save for \\\\\\\\\\\\\\Jarrod who was out to line his pockets from the start.

  6. Bill Thompson says

    You’ve gotta hand it to the NSW Liberals – they regularly seem to be able to shoot themselves in the foot. I remember when Nick Greiner was hoist on his own ICAC & when John Brogden was felled when a colleague outed him for an offhand remark about a douchebag’s spouse. Now Barry O’Farrell is ‘gone’ because of the dopey Grange thing. On the other hand, Labor seems almost Teflon-coated by comparison. No charges yet for Obeid, Armstrong, Maitland, etc, etc, however, a while back, former Liberal MP, Phillip Smiles, was hauled before the courts for evading tax of $15,735 when he falsely claimed deductions for secretarial work, when the payments actually related to nanny services. The ATO even said they prosecuted him because of the publicity it would garner! However, when former Labor Tourism Minister, John Brown, was busted around the same time by the ATO for having failed to declare about $1m in income, relating to his receipt of a ‘gift’ of a beachfront apartment – thus avoiding $475,111 in tax – he was just handled ‘administratively’ – with no prosecution. The only reason it eventually entered the public domain was because of subsequent court appeals & it apparently wasn’t until 2010 when he finally paid up – almost 20 years after the event! See all the details at the links:

    http://www.austlii.edu.au/cgi-bin/sinodisp/au/cases/cth/FCA/1992/441.html?stem=0&synonyms=0&query=%22Re Phillip Murray Smiles v Commissioner of Taxation %22


    http://www.austlii.edu.au/cgi-bin/sinodisp/au/cases/cth/FCAFC/2002/75.html?stem=0&synonyms=0&query=“john joseph brown ”




    Bill Thompson