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    "Top blog/Renato Obeid's World/Today's pick: This rambling weblog is worth reading not so much for its satirical posts but more for its insight into the minutiae of life in Lebanon, including the etiquette of road accidents and how to hire a taxi.” -Jane Perrone, The Guardian

    Tuesday, December 02, 2003  
    The television news headline - "Latham elected leader of Australian Labor Party"
    What I heard - "It's burst into flames!...Its crashed...Get away from it...This is one of the worst catastrophe's in the world...Its crashed to the ground...Oh the humanity...I cant talk to people*".

    One of the oldest political parties in the world,the Australian Labor Party (the ALP),has been assassinated.
    The ALP hasn't been immune from the global lurch to the right but yesterday it crossed the Rubicon - electing Mark Latham (see 07/12/2003) as its leader.
    I'm not a conspiracy theorist but I wouldn't be surprised if Mr Latham is a Liberal Party mole infiltrated into the ALP with the aim of destroying it (as it is said of Mikhail Gorbachev and the downfall of the Soviet Union and the Communist Party).
    If he isn't a mole per se,then he might as well be one because that is what he and his ilk have effectively done and will now finish off.
    You need no further proof of this than the fact that Liberal friends of mine were celebrating his election.
    One of them said to me that Australia needs to go further to the right.
    Yeah, I agree - further to the "yeah right".
    Australia needs to go further to the right as much as Francos' Spain did!
    I said that if we were to go any further to the right we'd be off the radar and that we cant go any further right then this!
    He said that we could - Pauline Hanson.
    I said that Pauline Hanson is Gandhi compared to Latham
    She never acted out her fantasy's whereas Latham has - two years ago he broke a migrant taxi drivers arm.
    Where have you gone Gough Whitlam?
    The answer is that Gough Whitlam has gone right to Mark Lathams side!
    Why Mr Whitlam,why?
    I've always considered you the father of today's ALP and the president (in internal exile) of the (undeclared) Republic of Australia - the only statesman and world class leader Australia has ever had and subsequently the only Australian leader to be overthrown in a coup de etat (which your dismissal was).
    Lathams no Gough Whitlam and (I hate to say this - I don't want to sound presumptuous,disrespectful or arrogant)) neither are you anymore and I'm no Laborite anymore.
    Despite dallying with the idea, I never joined the ALP but I have been an informal Laborite for about twenty years (since my early teens).
    I'm not leaving the Labor Party, the Labor Party is leaving me and all the other True Believers who made it what it was and whom it has abandoned.
    Good luck as the Liberal party's B team.
    It's the last call before (permanent) closing at the Old Labor Party Saloon, nothing but ghosts left there anyway.
    As the last of our old ideals crash to the ground somebody yells out "taxi" (the traditional cry in Australian pubs when somebody breaks something - as in its time to go home).
    Mr Latham, your taxi's here.
    Good luck and break a leg,you've already broken his arm and our hearts.

    The Australian Labor Party
    1891 - 2003

    *Radio reporter Herbert Morrison describing the explosion of the Hindenburgh (May 6 1937).

    8:19 am

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