March 23, 2008

My how parliament has changed

Annabel Crabb is having a fun time with the still newish government and the still newish opposition. Someone has to, since the rest of us aren't.

On Kev Rudd:

"Mr Rudd's papers are fast becoming quite a feature of Parliament's daily main event.

When the PM arrives at question time, he immediately spreads out all his notes into a series of neat piles; there were 14 yesterday, stretching all the way to the end of his extremely long desk.

He fusses over them like a pensioner at Bingo, picking them up, putting them down, straightening them, and leaning out periodically to ensure that the outlying piles have not - God forbid - been disturbed by a stray breeze or nicked by Peter Garrett for recycling."

On Brendan Nelson:

"Nelson specialises in anecdotes; the more graphic, the better. Ask him about hospital funding and he will tell you about the 90-year-old with a gangrenous leg he met last week.

Ask him about the regulatory complications in Australian telephony, and he'll give you five minutes on a guy he knows whose son died from an asthma attack because the line was down.

It is not fair to question his actual sincerity about this stuff; he is a man of substantial empathy for those suffering from misfortune.

But it is entirely fair to say that Nelson's attention is drawn disproportionately to the Gothic end of the human suffering spectrum."

Both via Steve at Opinion Dominion


  1. Crabb is spot on about Rudd. After reading her piece the other day I tuned into question time.
    Sure enough, there's Rudd with his papers in neat piles.
    He also placed his fingers on his temples head bowed in a contemplative manner as Wayne Swan spoke.
    That was also mentioned by Crabb, I think.

  2. Yes, we all have our idiosyncrasies eh?

    Our Annabel is witty writer as I observed last year. She, along with the unfortunate and missed Matt Price, contributed hugely to the return of wit and erudition to the political reporting game.

    She is possessed of a very clever turn of phrase. Her nickname for Peter Costello after after the biography and APEC fiascos - the Sub-Prime Minister - was a standout.

    I also loved her consistently funny portrayal of the Ruddbot.