It’s okay everyone, we’re nearly there. Just breathe.
Another Federal Election has come and gone, and while we still don’t know the result, it’s clear Australians have once again felt like they were the in South Park episode where they had to elect either a Giant Douche or a Turd Sandwich as the new school mascot.
We do know this: whoever manages to form government will spend a lot of time blaming. They’ll point the finger at the other team, the Senate and the crossbenchers for their woes and inability to implement ‘promises’. And the Australian people will want to be anywhere they don’t have to hear it.
Pollies, it’s really not that hard. Just follow my Top 10 Tips for successful government. If adhered to, they’ll set your reign apart from all those before you, and possibly even endear you to the voting public. And before you ask, I’m affiliated with no political party. I just wish whoever was in government did a fucking decent job.
1. We elected you to do something, so do something. Anything. I don’t care if you fuck up, I’ll give you points for at least trying, then vote you out in three years’ time; that’s the beauty of our federal democracy. Australians despise pollies who get into power then become hamstrung by indecisiveness or insecurity.
2. Don’t get into power and then blame the previous mob for your inability to do anything. We get it, they’re naughty poo-poos who called your mum a dirty word and pretty much shit all over everything, but that’s why we elected you instead – so explain the situation, then shut the fuck up and get on with the job.
3. Stop fucking with Medicare. Period. I know this may come as a shock to you, but we Aussies actually like Medicare and the way that magical green card gets us access to all sorts of things, like a doctor when we’re sick, or x-rays when we need them, or emergency hospital treatment when we’ve been seriously injured or are ill. I know, it’s all a bit decadent really, isn’t it? Paying taxes in the expectation that, should we need a medical service, we’ll be able to get it without having to sell our children into slavery. In fact, if I thought you’d do a good job with those taxes, I’d be willing to pay MORE *gasp* if it meant services like Medicare remained free to EVERY Australian, regardless of social standing or capacity to subsidise.
4. Don’t whinge about the make-up of the Senate, because this is the Senate that Australia voted for. Just shut the fuck up and deal with it. Because DEMOCRACY, BITCH. Yep, there are a lot of minor parties in there, so you’re going to have to use that dirty N-word – NEGOTIATION. Don’t complain that the Senators are being meanies and won’t pass your legislation without demanding changes; they’re there to scrutinise legislation and, where they see fit, suggest amendments. That’s their fucking job. That’s the ENTIRE FUCKING REASON the Senate exists – to ensure the States and Territories have a say in legislation and that checks and balances are in place. If the Senate won’t pass your piece of legislation, it’s not because they’re being obstructionist; it’s because your piece of legislation is in fact a piece of shit.
5. Please, please do everything in your power to stop the boats from coming. But stop them for the right reasons – because people smuggling is abhorrent and puts many innocent lives at risk. Stop them because men, women and children don’t deserve to die at sea while searching for a better life. Stop them at the source, so people don’t feel the need to risk their lives in the hope of a safer life. Work with other countries to chase down these people-smuggling motherfuckers and prosecute them. Don’t stop the boats because foreigners are bad and the terrorists have won if we let them in. Don’t stop them because you think xenophobia and hate are vote winners; in the long run, they are not.
Oh, and while we’re on the topic, if refugees do get through, recognise they’re human beings like you and me and whatever issues you have going on in your life, it’s nothing compared to what must have compelled them to pay their life savings to a stranger to hop on an overcrowded boat and travel around the world. These people likely have a much more horrific story than we can imagine, so wherever we’re ‘processing’ them, show some fucking compassion.
6. For the love of all things sexy, please don’t give yourselves another payrise without a) giving public servants a decent payrise as well, and b) leaving other income earners alone. Nothing shows how out of touch you really are more than the fact that the only time you have unity within Parliament is when you vote on your own remuneration.
7. For fuck’s sake, hurry up and make same-sex marriage legal already. I’m a straight, single, early-30’s guy, and it shits me to tears that we are even having this argument. No, I don’t want a fucking plebiscite – we pay your wages, and expect you to make these sorts of decisions on our behalf. That, and the $160-$550 million-dollar price tag could be better spent on things like – oh, I don’t know – education about gay, lesbian and transgender awareness? If you’re so against it, ask yourself why. If you’re straight, this in no way affects you or your relationships, so get the fuck out of the way, give other people the same rights and happiness as you and let this pass ASAP.
8. If someone asks you a question, just fucking answer it. I yearn for the day when Leigh Sales asks “So is the government is ruling out legislation to increase the number of cakes required to call yourself an official cake stall?” and the politician being questioned says “Yes.” Drop mic. Interview over.
Mia Freedman's snapchat story from Election Day says what we're all thinking.
9. Stop politicising infrastructure, and just get on with the fucking job of building shit. Yes, the NBN has cost us ELEVENTY BILLION DOLLARS more than we thought. But you know what? I don’t give a fuck whose fault it is – we’ve come this far, so just shut your cake holes and finish the job. In fact, why don’t we think about a completely out-there concept, and have an Independent Infrastructure Advisory Board? I’ll even let you use that name – the IIAB (assuming the counterparts in New Zealand are cool with us sharing their name). They can look at the big shit that needs to be built (NBN, high-speed rail, roads, airports, BIG THINGS), determine which ones are most important, set timelines and then it’s up to each and every government to fund them. A crazy idea I know – putting critical nation-building decisions into the hands of an independent, non-politically-motivated entity...but it’s food for thought.
10. Don’t ever, EVER eat anything on camera. You’ve proven time and time again that you're incapable of eating onions or democracy sausages or drinking schooners, so just give up, smile, then devour your food out of sight.
That’s it for now – I’m sure there’s plenty more advice that an incoming government could use to endear themselves to the public, but hopefully these 10 things gets them thinking. To democracy!