The Liberal way

By June 11, 2020Australian Politics

At the launch of her campaign for the Eden-Monaro by-election, Liberal candidate Fiona Kotvojs was recorded as saying the following:

“I really believe in an old Chinese saying – give a man a fish and feed him for a day, teach him how to fish and feed him for life. That summarises what Liberal philosophy is all about.”1

Apart from the fact that there is no clear evidence that this originated as a Chinese proverb, a Navajo saying, from 12th century philosopher Maimonides or from anywhere else2, it certainly has been used often over the years.

However, for Fiona Kotvojs to maintain that this proverb is part of Liberal philosophy is simply ludicrous. Based on the history of malfeasance over the last seven years of coalition government3,4, the ‘Liberal philosophy’ in this situation would be either:

  1. to give the fishing contract to a multinational company operating large trawlers to overfish anywhere they wished, provided they made donations to the Liberal Party campaign funds; or
  2. to get a company (usually one of Angus Taylor’s) based in the Cayman Islands to apply for a government grant to fish around the coast at an exorbitant cost to the taxpayer, with no guarantee of providing fish to anyone.

That is the real Liberal Party philosophy.

Sources

  1. https://the-riotact.com/fiona-kotvojs-on-climate-change-bushfires-and-not-fitting-into-a-liberal-party-box/378839
  2. https://quoteinvestigator.com/2015/08/28/fish/
  3. http://www.blotreport.com/2020/03/08/corruption-galore/
  4. http://www.blotreport.com/2020/04/30/corruption-galore-2/

10 Comments

  • JON says:

    Indeed. They throw taxpayer money around like it’s confetti when it suits their political aims, usually without competitive tendering, and often without proper justification, little effective documentation, no outcomes to be met and no follow-up on where the funds actually went. The list is long and growing:
    – the $444M handed, much to their surprise, to the GBR Foundation, a mob with little capacity and next to no scientific expertise to help mitigate growing GBR issues, all the while ignoring the obvious BIG issue for our jewel in the crown – global warming. https://www.abc.net.au/news/2018-05-22/great-barrier-reef-funding-labor-accuse-due-diligence/9785782

    – the $30M handout to Fox sports for the “promotion of under-represented sport”.
    https://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/2017/jul/19/government-declines-to-explain-foxtels-30m-handout-for-sports-broadcasting

    -water handouts based on smoke and mirrors which are then ignored by farmers and/or undermined by State governments;
    https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2019/apr/25/barnaby-joyce-and-watergate-the-water-buybacks-scandal-explained

    – their sports rort handouts which gave millions to wealthy and marginal electorates while ignoring other real needs elsewhere. The disgraceful swimming pool rorts , the ladies change room fiasco in SA, and the Penrith Pathers parking lot scandal are just a few prime examples of their gross misuse of funds and their utter incompetence in determining REAL needs of the nation.
    https://www.abc.net.au/news/2020-02-07/government-cash-splash-swimming-pools/11924850
    https://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/2020/jan/24/sports-grants-rugby-club-gets-funding-for-female-change-rooms-but-has-no-womens-team
    https://www.smh.com.au/national/nsw/how-a-24-million-sports-grant-built-panthers-new-function-centre-and-car-park-20200128-p53vdr.html

  • JON says:

    Indeed. They throw taxpayer money around like it’s confetti when it suits their political aims, usually without competitive tendering, and often without proper justification, little effective documentation, no outcomes to be met and no follow-up on where the funds actually went. The list is long and growing:
    – the $444M handed, much to their surprise, to the GBR Foundation, a mob with little capacity and next to no scientific expertise to help mitigate growing GBR issues, all the while ignoring the obvious BIG issue for our jewel in the crown – global warming. https://www.abc.net.au/news/2018-05-22/great-barrier-reef-funding-labor-accuse-due-diligence/9785782

    – the $30M handout to Fox sports for the “promotion of under-represented sport”.
    https://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/2017/jul/19/government-declines-to-explain-foxtels-30m-handout-for-sports-broadcasting

    -water handouts based on smoke and mirrors which are then ignored by farmers and/or undermined by State governments.
    https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2019/apr/25/barnaby-joyce-and-watergate-the-water-buybacks-scandal-explained

    – their sports rort handouts which gave millions to wealthy and marginal electorates while ignoring other real needs elsewhere. The disgraceful swimming pool rorts , the ladies change room fiasco in SA, and the Penrith Pathers parking lot scandal are just a few prime examples of their gross misuse of funds and their utter incompetence in determining REAL needs of the nation.
    https://www.abc.net.au/news/2020-02-07/government-cash-splash-swimming-pools/11924850
    https://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/2020/jan/24/sports-grants-rugby-club-gets-funding-for-female-change-rooms-but-has-no-womens-team
    https://www.smh.com.au/national/nsw/how-a-24-million-sports-grant-built-panthers-new-function-centre-and-car-park-20200128-p53vdr.html

  • Mark Dougall says:

    I really believe in an old South Australian (meaning me) saying. Liberal politicians are gobsmackingly gormless idiots.

    *All rights reserved.

  • clive pegler says:

    he he…. i was going to tell youse about the location of her campaign launch in lovely, still green, Murrumbateman with #ScottyFromMarketing in tow, rather than brown n black Cobargo …. but i guess youse already know that…… coz i read it here. 😀

  • Russell says:

    Yes I must concord with whale-sized fullness of voice with that summation. Although Scampott Moronsin claims to be an ardent adept of the “Arch-fisher of men”, J C, he is one of the fishiest, blokes this side of a Cronulla beach flounder. It’s a stretch to believe he believes in CO..oh,sorry..GOD. Look what happened to the Royal Angus Taylor Basin rivers early in 2019! The Lead Pigfish also runs a school of mostly mental minnows and gropers, a leaking aquarium of types who are often shark cartilege from the neck…sorry…from their $400 Sicilian shoes, upwards. And that last word reminds me of a saying about the opposite direction, which is where national wealth and living standards of this benighted nation are headed as fast as a marlin playing hide-and-seek with Lee Marvin. I mean the old Zulu or Lapland or Maori or somewhere saying: A FISH ROTS…. etc etc. You know it. I suspect the heads of the corporations who have fished for dodgy mining permits, government subsidies and tax reductions out of Canberra’s murky pond for decades, are “off”; they stink with generosity to the Liberal election funds. So folks, don’t let any Lib come the raw prawn on yaz, coz those Flatheads sit on a pretty hypocritical Perch as they tell us times are going to get tough and Rough-y to take. While they say we’re all in it together, they’ll be still scoffing down barramundi while we mortals are reduced to Talapia or sardines on stale bread even if we’ve got a one day a week gig in the Uber economy of tomorrow. We could go to economic Hell, hook, line and sinker! (p. s. SINCERE APOLOGIES TO ALL WHO HAVE READ THIS).

  • Russell says:

    This one is probably only for Mark Dougall. Hey, are you putting to us that wily old Tom Playford was a gormless idiot? After all, he engineered a statewide gerrymander of electorates from the ’40s to the late 60’s, which gave largely industrial ( and Labo U r Party-inclined) Adelaide an ice cube’s chance in hell of outvoting comatose country electorates, those same having about half a voter per two hundred square miles! Odd that, eh? Tom ran a sort of smart operation; it kept a few gormless, (sometimes idiot, but never the Honorable Steele Hall, tut-tut!) Country Party chappies in state Parliament for decades. It took a politician with much gorm and brains, one denied entry to the Liberal Party to switch to Labour. He then demanded change to the Playford Ploy, resulting in him (Miss-ter Pinkshorts)having the top job in SA for a decade. Only until a damned nosey Police Commissioner appointed by the Premier herself, sort of ”buried” D D along with some other un- Adelaidish matters causing jolly alarm among the monied blue rinse set of Auntie Addie. Playford was SO boring and plain but had that “niceness” that our own Dame Edna praises loudly. Hence Playford being perfect for SA of the sundrenched, excruciatingly nice but cemetery-like time in which he was the ?Little Ming” of North Terrace.

  • Mark Dougall says:

    Completely right, Russell, about Playford. He was actually to the left of the positions held, particularly related to state ownership, of most, maybe all current ALP pollies. He was a good friend and mentor in his later years to Dunstan. I regard him, like Fraser (in the end), Ian McPhee, Petro Georgiou, and a few others as part of a truly decent group of people who represented the Liberal party when it actually was a bit liberal. Steele Hall is another. I also have a great deal of regard for John Hewson. Some of them had, or have, little time for what the Liberal party was turned into under Howard and made worse since. So I stand corrected. The words “most” and “current” need to be included at the beginning of the sentence describing Liberal Politicians.

  • Russell says:

    I’m no expert on Playford as Premier, but I know he was a well-off upper middle-classer, much suited to lead the LCP back then. And certainly in the fifties, sixties, under Playford, SA zoomed ahead in employment and business growth; as did all the developed world. Mass consumerism became the rule of life, for good or ill, but mainly ill. Society only began to recognise later the big social-ethical downside of excessive wealth, easy bank credit etc. And as Mark said, the Liberal Party was once a place where original “liberal”, flexible ideas about life were held by many. It wasn’t yet the doctrinally stiff Frankenstein later created by some narrow-thinking “reformers”. I really mean “DE-formers”. Mal Fraser redeemed himself a little by acting on some truly humane Liberal values as he aged. To me, the party’s problem was always that very odd coupling of ruthless economic practices with rather pride-soaked churchiness. Today’s gross distortions in those two aspects have rendered the LP almost irrelevant for young voters, and many “oldies” are sickened by a Devil-take-hindmost”Reaganism” that Howard’s unsavoury crew were brainwashed by. From 2000, we saw an il-Liberal Party which grew uglier in its policies year on year.

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