Saint Malcolm, From Bad to Verse

(with apologies to Clement Moore)


   ‘Twas the night before Coup Day, when all through the House
Not a creature was stirring who wasn’t a louse.
The plotters were planning the details with care,
In hopes that Saint Malcolm soon would be there.

   The loyalists were nestled all snug in their beds,
While the good polls in Canning danced in their heads.
Julie in foreign affairs, and I as A-G,
Would not abide Abbott into Year Three.

  When burst forth on Twitter such feeling, such clatter,
I sprang from my limo to see what was the matter.
Up to my office I flew like the wind,
All was in play, for those who had sinned.

   Leigh Sales and Mark Scott and Tony Jones too
Would give lustre and haloes to our man, ’twas true.
Who cares for principle when perks are at stake?
We needed a lefty, a man on the make.

   Good looks, a lawyer, bank accounts that were full,
I knew in a moment it must be Turnbull.
More cunning than Gillard’s, his lackeys they came,
And he whistled and shouted and called them by name:

“Now Arthur! Now Niki!
Now Ryan and Wyatt!
On, Fifield! On, Mark Scott!
On, PVO and McGrath!
To the top of the Party!
To the top of the charts!
Now be rid of him! Rid of him!
And his team of Old Farts!”

    As monarchists before the Queen tend to kneel,
A few more MPs  were all we had to peel.
So up to the House his lackeys they flew,
With promises and spending, ‘Please join our crew!’

   And then, in a twinkling, I heard on the box
The prancing and fawning of each of these schlocks.
As I puffed up and gloated and was turning around,
Down my hallway came Malcolm, Mr. Rebound.

   He was dressed in Armani, hair perfectly styled,
And his manner was measured, not spicy but mild.
A bundle of concessions he’d strapped to his back,
Not for him any fights, any hassles or flak.

   Leigh Sales was all giddy, his dimples did move her,
‘One of us! One of us!’ was Scott’s Ultimo purr.
Malcolm’s droll winks, nods and come-hither glances
Had Niki and Peter in raptures and trances.

    The stump of a caucus he held tight in his hand,
Party faithful, by contrast, were there to withstand.
‘I’m better than Shorten’, was his favourite line,
So he said to Mitchell; he said it to Pyne.

   He was bending and mod’rate, a jolly old polly,
And I gushed when I saw him, in spite of my folly.
A wink of his eye and a twist of his head
Soon gave me to know my job had nothing to dread.

   He spoke many words, the jargon did work,
And calmed down the journos, who’d gone half berserk.
Spouting the line that ‘It’s the possible that matters’,
’Twas 4-to-1-on he’d leave the Party in tatters.

   Manchurian Malcolm, the man for The Oz,
Gave more than a few of us reason to pause.
But I heard him exclaim, now safely in place,
‘Happy Coup Day to all’, from Malcolm The Two-Face.

  • en passant

    I hear rumours that the Republican Movement has nominated your verse for the National Anthem. to the two note dirge of Lee Marvin in Paint Your Wagon.

  • dsh2@bigpond.com

    Thank heavens for Quadrant and writers such as James Allan. I am being driven to distraction by the sycophancy in the media, including the once reasonable, The Oz.

    • Another View


  • brian.doak@bigpond.com

    Troubled fellow correspondent Davidovich be grateful for the Oz this weekend and the article on Coral Magnolia Lansbury, Malcolm’s mother. We read that Coral as a young woman, then a teenager, joined the ABC as a drama and feature writer. Her father had also worked for ABC radio.Coral’s first marriage was to an older [ABC] radio producer.

    With this family history and Malcolm ‘always concerned to live up to his mother’s high standard’ we can expect no criticism of the ABC from Malcolm no matter how much it is warranted. What does it say about the otherworldliness of Tony Abbott who gave the communications portfolio to the son and grandson of ABC insiders? Who else would put an influential ‘propaganda’ medium in the hands of ones opponent? Only TA!

  • Jody

    Turnbull may well have had to live up to his mother’s “high standard”, but that ‘standard’ wasn’t really very high at all; pregnant before marriage (rare in the 1950s), abandoning your husband and young son (even taking the family pet!), marrying your own godfather and then chasing after and marrying a thrice-married university lecturer. Something is wrong with this narrative if we’re looking for role models.

  • denandsel@optusnet.com.au

    Below is my reply to Geoff Luck earlier this week [Dec 17] on the same subject – what does Malcolm want?
    :- However it leads me, and I suspect many others, to consider the question, what does Malcolm [a.k.a. Lord ‘Waffles’ of Wentworth, philosopher king and supreme navigator of the ship of soft social issues in dangerous economic seas.] actually believe in? What motivates him? What does he stand for, besides himself?
    Adam Smith, had it nailed centuries ago when he said :- ‘Little else is requisite to carry a state to the highest degree of opulence … but peace, easy taxes and a tolerable administration of justice,” and also ‘By pursuing his/her own rational self interest, a person frequently promotes that of the society more effectively than when he really intends to promote it.”
    Due to his religious beliefs Tony Abbott failed to fight hard enough for free markets. But even more worryingly I suspect that Malcolm will only fight for free markets if he thinks it will help in his quest to gain/retain power, not because of his philosophical conviction. Self belief and self confidence are admirable traits when used for ends that are not solely concerned with the gaining of power for powers sake. However I have severe doubts that Malcolm will refrain from using any power that he has gained for any other purpose bar that of justifying himself and demonstrating his ‘worth’ to impress others. His efforts concerning ‘Global Warming’/Climate Change/Catastrophic AGW/‘Gaia worship’ etc. and his willingness to participate in ‘Carbon [dioxide] trading schemes’ are proof enough to me that power is the ‘end game’ that consumes Malcolm much more than does advancing free enterprise philosophies and markets. :-
    After reading the Davidovich article it appears even more to me that Malcolm craves ‘approval’ from the wealth consuming ‘Inner City elites'[especially the ABC types and the ilk of Gillian Triggs] and he wants revenge on the wealth producing sections of Australian society because they mostly had a normal upbringing while he had a ‘deprived’ childhood.

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