A GROUP of us went to Canberra in ‘the recession we had to have’ in the 1990s to meet with Paul Keating to get more road and regional development funding for regional Queensland, when he stuck out his thin hand for a handshake.
A crusty livestock trucker from the north-west grabbed the hand to Keating’s surprise, turned it over and looked at it carefully.
An obviously frightened Keating asked what was going on.
The turd herder (as he described himself) said he just wanted to “read the palm that’s been stuck in my wallet taking all me money.”
Even Keating laughed.
The point here is that (a) a bunch of upset down-at-heel bushies got into see a Labor Treasurer, (b) they man-handled the Treasurer without a security alert, and (c) the point was made with a good Aussie laugh.
A couple of decades on we have a Parliament where, under such tight security, real people hardly get access to pollies, the talk is all so politically correct that hardly a real issue gets raised, and pollies are so consumed with third rate issues (SSM to ‘am I really an Aussie’), the real business of the nation affecting real people hardly gets any attention.
Time for a bit of reading of thin palms of our elected representatives — or replaced by down-to-earth crusty Aussies who have bounced over plenty of rural road corrugations to get back to real issues.