Posted on August 13, 2013 by Xavier Toby

Federal Election Time – It’s a Race to the Bottom

cutting-pensions

Thanks to Nick Anderson from the Houston Chronicle for this image.

Liberal or Labor? Anyone else feel like it’s being asked to choose between lethal injection or the electrical chair?

Trying to decide who I’m going to vote for this election has been tricky, but I think I’ve come up with a method that might work.

First I’m going think of Tony Abbott, and vomit into a bucket. Then I’ll think of Kevin Rudd, and vomit into a different bucket. Whichever bucket contains the least spew, that’s who’ll win my vote.

I haven’t been this depressed about a federal election since the last time there was a federal election. Back then we didn’t even properly decide. We had one job, to choose Liberal or Labor, and we got a hung parliament.

We made Bob Katter one of the most powerful men in the country, and expecting him to do anything sensibly is like asking a hat to drive a car. Which apparently Katter’s hat can do – just ask him. According to Katter there’s also no homosexuality in rural Australia and cows are more important than people and oxygen.

So this election, lethal injection and electrocution aren’t the only options. There’s also hanging. Apparently it’s a quicker way to die, but after three years of a hung parliament, it’s clear that they don’t do anything quickly.

You know what would really be nice? If there was someone I actually wanted to vote for. Who stood for something based on what was best for society, instead of whatever was going to win the most votes. I do realise that’s the point of an election, but when you have to erase every one of your morals to win, then what’s the point?

Over the last three years we’ve seen a constant parade of politicians talking at length about core values and the moral high ground, then as soon as the polls suggest their views aren’t popular, they’re dismissed faster than the Australian cricket team’s top order. Than another CEO of News Limited. Than any policy that might protect the environment, universities or farmers, or any proposed tax on the banks or the mining industry.

I don’t even know why I’m stressing over who I’m going to vote for. The major parties don’t care about winning my vote. Kevin knows he’s already got the vote of everyone with a semblance of a social conscience, because the only other option is Tony.

So Kevin is spending all his time trying to woo the poorly educated bogan bigots, otherwise known as swinging voters, which means that whoever wins the election, in effect it’s them who’ll be running the country.

A prime example is the race to the bottom that is Australia’s policy on asylum seekers. It might be finally stopping the boats, but what about treating humans like human beings?

In order to stop the boats, why don’t we just let ‘em fly here? It would be by far the cheapest option for everyone involved, and it would save lives. The only downside is that we’d have to let in thousands of new immigrants. You know, those people that this country was founded on and who make up 97 per cent of the population. Indigenous Australians make up the other three per cent.

Kevin Rudd has also ditched the carbon tax, because he’s done his research and discovered that trees don’t vote. So stuff ‘em. Also, there’s no point protecting the environment and the planet for our children, because they don’t vote either.

Kevin 2.0 will do anything to win votes. If you’re in a marginal electorate, ask him to dress up in a gimp suit, cover himself in peanut butter and recite ‘Baby One More Time’ by Britney Spears, while attempting to lasso a bush turkey. He’ll do it, if he hasn’t already.

Despite the polls saying it’s close, and the fact that Tony Abbott is less popular than Anthony Mundine, Lara Bingle and even Tom Waterhouse, it’s Abbott who’ll win the next election.

If you don’t believe me, why didn’t Bill Shorten take over when it was clear Julia Gillard had no chance? Because he’s not an idiot. Far better to let Kevin skewer himself and then resign.

On Tony’s first day in office, I expect him to say something like,

“I’m cancelling the national broadband network, as I’m pretty sure the internet doesn’t exist. Also, there will be no more disability and unemployment benefits, and that fixes up the deficit. With the extra benefit of forcing all the bludgers to get a job or starve. Oh and I’m giving every national park to the mining industry, everyone has to be a Christian, and women aren’t allowed to talk anymore.”

Everyone in Australia will go, “Oh that’s right, he’s a lunatic. What have we done?”

It will be the start of a three-year drinking binge, until the next election and we’re faced with the same lack of options, and we all just keep drinking.

Apart from Kevin or Tony, who will get your preference no matter what you do, what are the other options?

There’s Clive Palmer who believes in inflatable dinosaurs and mining his own children, if there’s a dollar in it. Or Bob Katter, who chose the name ‘Australia Party’ because ‘Redneck Racist Homophobic Lunatics’ was already taken by Family First and One Nation.

Don’t forget the Greens. Who are so unwilling to budge from their superior stance on issues like asylum seekers and the carbon tax that they end up voting against every policy, along with the Liberal Party. With their left wing extremism, the Greens definitely put the ‘mental’ back into environmental.

What we need is a new process and some better options.

Most of us consider voting on election day a massive chore, but when it comes to voting on reality television shows, the phone lines are jammed.

I reckon every hopeful for Prime Minister should be put into the Big Brother House. Along with some all stars from past elections like Bob Hawke, John Howard and Pauline Hanson. Leave the current contestants in there as well, so that there are some humans actually worth voting for.

My money is on the personal trainer, fireman, flight attendant or part-time model. I haven’t been watching Big Brother as I’ve got a life, but I assume they’re all contestants.

Unfortunately the options are still limited as there’s never anyone in the Big Brother house who you’d trust to run anything. Same as with politics, the intelligent and reasonable people are clever enough to stay well away.

Xavier Toby is a writer and comedian.

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