Park it or drive it Johnny!

Yesterday I heard HoWARd wade into the US presidential candidacy and US foreign affairs with this outburst and cringed.

“I think that will just encourage those who want to completely destabilize and destroy Iraq, and create chaos and a victory for the terrorists to hang on and hope for an Obama victory. If I were running al Qaeda in Iraq, I would put a circle around March 2008 and be praying as many times as possible for a victory, not only for Obama but also for the Democrats.” – John HoWARd.

Today I heard Democratic Presidential hopeful Barack Obama respond to HoWARd and grinned.

“I think it’s flattering that one of George Bush’s allies on the other side of the world started attacking me the day after I announced [my candidacy]. I would also note that we have close to 140,000 troops in Iraq and my understanding is Mr Howard has deployed 1,400. So if he is…to fight the good fight in Iraq, I would suggest that he calls up another 20,000 Australians and sends them to Iraq, otherwise it’s just a bunch of empty rhetoric.” – Senator Obama.

Not usually a fan of dichotomous thinking, I am very much enjoying that my PM is being bitchslapped by a junior Senator in the US Congress.

UPDATE: Our ‘Man of steel’ not so tough. While in New Zealand, during a press conference, a reporter asked HoWARd if he had any other advice for Barack Obama. Our Johnny went off,

“I do not resile from anything I have said….


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30 Responses to “Park it or drive it Johnny!”

  1. weezil Says:

    Bang-on, Suki.

    While the term ‘bitchslapped’ does have origins in extreme sexist language, it has taken on a meaning all its own, indicative of an extremely unbalanced bout. Howard taking on Obama is as suicidally silly as Kostya Tzu picking a barney with Mike Tyson.

    HoWARd probably still doesn’t know what hit him.

  2. mgk: Machine Gun Keyboard Says:

    […] hat tip to Suki for the Obama followup. […]

  3. Troy Rollo Says:

    It wasn’t just poor politics, it was unexpectedly ignorant too – since the US Presidential election (and the next Congressional one) is not until November 2008 it is obvious that it will have no effect whatsoever on a March 2008 deadline. Wouldn’t you think somebody who has been involved in politics for 50 years would know this?

  4. weezil Says:

    You would think that, Troy. Howard was referring to Obama’s plan to pull troops out of Iraq by March 2008, which of course predates Obama’s abilty to hold the office (if elected, he’d be inaugurated in January, 2009). Obama is clearly relying on the new Democratic Congress to move to withdraw troops by the March 2008 date. If this isn’t the unravelling of the HoWARd mojo, it sure looks like the beginning of it.

  5. Suki Says:

    I bet Obama was surprised to find our Johnny flailing around in this net, and frankly so was I.

    HoWARd is and has been more astute than this. I’m not yet convinced that this isn’t the beginning of some of his ‘grooming’ behavior for the electorate, or a diversion, and only time will tell if in fact it is.

    Agreed, whatever it is it’s uncharacteristically politically clumsy for HoWARd.

    I’m currently suspicious that this outburst will involve David Hicks somehow…
    Our PM is such a tricky guy!

  6. weezil Says:

    Suki, I have whiffs of a suddenly freed David Hicks, don’t you?

    Hicks is an unnecessary burden for the Prime Miniature. However, considering Alexander the Downer and That Dead Guy said last week that Hicks would have been freed anytime they asked, a sudden freeing of Hicks could play fairly negatively for Team HoWARd.

  7. Colours Says:

    Hi Suki,

    Know you via Weez. Thank him! (And nice to ‘meet you’, you remind me of some of the awesome hardworking single mums I went to uni with! πŸ˜€ )

    I find it rather dull that Howard and Rudd are having a war of words against each other regarding Obama’s “withdrawal by March 08” push, considering it will NEVER happen, since Bush will still (unfortunately) be in the WH then. The Bush Admin will not allow that to happen.

    It’s all words…. but when I look at Howard getting flustered (when I don’t change the channel as I’m wont to do when those caterpillars are on my screen) I can’t help but rub my hands with glee! I love seeing him losing his cool.

    It might come to nought (since it’s all empty rhetoric), but it was still fun while it lasted!

    Swear to God, if Howard’s here for another 3 years, chances are I won’t be!!

  8. Suki Says:

    Hi Colours,

    If you went to the Northern Territory University (NTU) Myilly Point campus, where the Library used to be the old hospital’s morgue then I have met you. πŸ™‚

    If not, then it sounds like I should have. We certainly share our dislike of more HoWARd.

    In fact that was what prompted me to blog all those years ago…

  9. Colours Says:

    G’day Suki,

    No, I didn’t go to NTU. I went to SCU!

    Cheers, C.

  10. Karlo Says:

    With idiots like hoWARd as an enemy, who needs friends?

  11. weezil Says:

    Suki, you and Michelle Grattan are of like mind– again. Everyone’s speculating on what the Short Chap has up his sleeve… but in fact, he just appears to have made a sophomoric political mistake by naming up the Dems as ‘the Al-Qaeda party of choice.’ Not even GW Shrub can get away with calling the Dems ‘terrorist symps.’

    I still think there’s something nefarious afoot… after all, JWH is involved. You can tell Johnny’s lying when his lips are moving. Could HoWARd be tarnishing his own reputation to make the handover to P Costello somewhat more palatable to the Liberals’ base?

  12. Colours Says:

    Peter Costello will never, ever be Leader of the Liberals. The Libs know they’ll lose and lose heavily.

    There’s something deeper and more complex going on, than paving the way for a Costello handover, methinks. It’ll all come out in the wash, as the cliche goes, but I hope we won’t be caught unawares when it does come. I’m sick of looking like a stunned mullet!

  13. ab Says:

    You could say Howard was all ginned up, ready for a fight, or one tenth of a fight, with Barack

  14. Suki Says:

    And yet with all his ‘ginned-up’ -iness he won’t touch a debate with Rudd.

    Rodents hide in the back of their most fortified shelters when they are scared. They do not come out until the predator is long gone. Almost everything is a predator to a rat.

  15. Dave C Says:

    The Libs know they’ll lose and lose heavily.

    I think it may be looking better than just a Howard loss. Have you seen this…

    This gives me hope.

  16. Suki Says:


    dare I inhale the sweet, faint scent of change in the air.

  17. Colours Says:

    Like after a fresh drop of rain, everything smells new and fresh…

    …or the humidity hits us with a force and we all suffer terribly….

    Which is it gonna be??

    Sigh. I should stop talking shit. That’ll be the wine, actually.

  18. Graham Bell Says:

    So far as I am concerned, it looks as though Howard was suckered into making that politically naive attack on Obama by somebody in the White house or in the top-deck of the Republican Party ….. and it may have been aimed at getting Howard to do somthing that served broader American bi-partisan interests even though Howard attacked a Democrat candidate and his party.

    Twenty thousand extra troops? Now isn’t that funny; only a few thousand short of the number needed for The Surge.

    And 20 000 is a number that could be pushed through accelerated Recruit training and a pre-embarkation exercise in four-to-five months and then flown straight to Iraq WHEN military conscription is introduced.

    I deliberately did not refer to the “re-introduction of National Service”; it won’t be anything so thorough and gentlemanly as National Service. The coming military conscription will be aimed at maximizing the number of cannon-fodder as quickly as possible and at the lowest possible cost.

    Want to protest? Better read the new Pro-Terrorist security laws first.

    Veterans’Affairs entitlements for the veterans and their families? That will change too …. downwards!

    The last major obstacle to a stroke-of-the-pen introduction of military conscription, employer concerns about creating a labour shortage, has been eliminated by the introduction of the 457 visa scam. As soon as military conscription comes in, a lot of the so-called restrictions on 457 visas will be loosened – on paper as well as in reality.

    The really sad thing is that the voting public will re-elect Howard on it, “He got all those dole-bludgers off the streets and into the army, didn’t he?” There’ll be plenty of “our glorious dead” over whom politicians seeking re-election can shed crocodile tears in photo-opportunities. It will be a sure-fire vote-winner in a khaki election.

    And it will keep our “great-and-powerful friends” happy too.

  19. weezil Says:

    HAH! My ‘spidey sense’ is still spot-friggin’ on.

    weezil Says:
    February 12th, 2007 at 9:11 pm

    Suki, I have whiffs of a suddenly freed David Hicks, don’t you?

    And dennnnn- in today’s SMH: Howard to press for Hicks’ release before next election

  20. Dave C Says:

    Did you guys see this GetUp campaign

    I thought it was so fucking clever. It also reminded me of Suki’s support for them, and brought me back here.

  21. Suki Says:

    Whilst it is a complex plan it is great one.

    GetUp! members write a postcard supporting action by the government for David Hicks. That card, and a further postcard encouraging the voter to send a similar message to the member for the seat of Bennelong (John HoWARd), is hand delivered to voters in the seat of Bennelong. The plan being to have John HoWARd receive messages from the people that will be voting in his electorate and hopefully prompt him to take action. Engaging the public (and the government) with creativity and innovation on an issue 5 years old is the only way to go.

    Moreover, GetUp! has been summarily dismissed by politicians as variously, spam or inconsequential greenies or a fad. This action shows that GetUp! is neither, and recently it pushed for a total of 200,000 members.
    As of today, GetUp! has 167,548 members representing 84% of its goal.

  22. Graham Bell Says:

    Suki and All:

    A nasty thought ….. what if Howard’ mob had scripted this whole “insult to Obama” situation so as to win a “greater”(?) prize than scoring points off a US Democrats aspriant for the presidency? It’s neither as impossible nor as ridiculous as would first appear.

    Anyway, let’s all pray that Mr J W Howard gets his deposit back if he stands again in the seat of Bennelong, πŸ™‚

  23. Suki Says:

    I shake my head in disbelief and yell at my radio when I hear HoWARd’s latest spin.

    He is now saying that Blair’s recent announcement concerning troop withdrawal is a reduction in troops, not a withdrawal.

  24. Colours Says:

    Suki, I was listening to 702 today where a woman from the British army (actually, not sure who she was or who she was representing but she was part of the Royal Forces, nevertheless) was talking about the withdrawal. The interviewer told her that the Australian government has been calling the withdrawal as a ‘reduction, not a withdrawal’ and this woman practically choked with disbelieving laughter. She said of course it’s a withdrawal, the UK Govt, Forces and media are calling it a withdrawal, not a ‘reduction’!

    Of course, I felt a bit embarrassed to think what she must thinking about our Parliamentarians. “Hey guys, have you heard? The Antipodeans are calling it a REDUCTION!!! Hahaha, have you ever heard anything so stupid?!”

  25. weezil Says:

    If the Brits and yanks pull out of Iraq, will Howard keep Australian troops in?

    I wanna see a little COMMITMENT to this GWOT.

  26. Graham Bell Says:

    It was the British in “Perfidious Albion” who invented spin then refined it to an art-form so they know very well when not telling the truth can be counter-productive. Of course it is a Withdrawal and they have already said that the situation in Basra now is worsening ….. they will eventually explain everything in their usual lucid manner and everyone will believe them ….. contrast that with the Australian authorities who make fools of themselves by resorting to the Big Lie and the Cover-Up on every occasion regardless of whether they are helpful to their cause or not.

    Weezil, you asked
    ” ” If the Brits and yanks pull out of Iraq, will Howard keep Australian troops in?” ” I trust that is LIVE Australian troops you are referring to

  27. Colours Says:

    Graham Bell. Exactly. Will you marry me????

  28. Graham Bell Says:

    Sorry it took ages to get back to Suki’s site.

    πŸ™‚ What a lovely compliment! Alas, I am constrained from acceptng your delightful and generous offer …… πŸ™

  29. Colours Says:

    Dear Mr Bell,

    It is with much regret and rue that I must withdraw my offer of marriage, which was made during a period of time whence I was in an inebriating and spirituous, er, mood.

    Although it seems foolish to withdraw my offer of connubial bliss *after* you have declined it, I am merely trying to save face, from my wretchedness and your rejection.

    They say “the devil’s in the detail”; I am inclined to believe the archfiend is in the firewater.

    Please do not find it hard to believe that, as I type this, I am entirely abstemious. That may change this weekend, however. Fortunately, for you, for Suki, for the readers of this blog, and, most importantly, for me, I will be no where near a computer as I partake in another hedonistic venture – otherwise known as a ‘hen’s night’, as I have a dear friend who wishes to sound the death knell – otherwise known as ‘marriage’ (and, I must note, he did not reject her proposition, either). My own death should occur sometime on Sunday afternoon.

    Yours laboriously,

  30. Graham Bell Says:

    Dear Colours,
    Your face is well saved. Be of good cheer for absolutely no rejection was intended; ’twas merely my clumsy attempt at explanation. Abandon whatever lingering and unnecessary feelings of wretchedness there may be about you and instead prepare yourself well for the joys, the delights, the excesses of the hens’ night of which you spoke. Would you be so kind as to delay your demise until very much later in this century – or early in the next if that is your desire; you may find that drinking copious amounts of water before setting out on the hens’ night may well abolish feelings of – and even earnest desires for – death on the Sunday afterwards; water beforehand is indeed a sovereign remedy…….

    Yours in admiration and sincerity,


    ….. Gee, we have strayed a wee bit from the Man Of Steel and his shenanegans, haven’t we? πŸ™‚ Hope you and your friends have a rip-roaring hens’ night! πŸ˜€

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