It seems that our Prime Minister’s speech in Parliament last night went viral. The international media has picked up on it and without knowing the back story most of them have said in effect (I’m paraphrasing) ‘go girl, terrific speech, you just give it to that male chauvinist, Tony Abbott.’
Julia Gillard is a strong speaker, I’ll give her that, especially when she’s going on the offensive, which she usually is when she doesn’t want to answer questions at (ironically) Question Time. Her standard answer to probing questions from the media is that she’s not going answer them. She says that she already answered them months earlier and implies that the media had better look it up.
Julia Gillard is the Australian Prime Minister, that is – she is the first minister of the land. To not explain herself to the media whose job it is to inform the electorate is surely the height of arrogance. I think that is only one of the many reasons Gillard won’t be re-elected, but I’m sure that when the time comes and she and her party is voted out Julia Gillard will blame it on people who targeted her because she is a woman rather than people who thought her policies were bad.
Earlier this year, Harry Morgan, House of Representatives speaker who is liked and respected on both sides of politics resigned and was replaced with Peter Slipper. Last night Peter Slipper resigned as Speaker after a debate was held in which the Government refused to vote him out of office. The Prime Minister’s ‘fiery speech’ as it’s been described, was all for nothing and Julia Gillard was left with egg on her face. She had known about Slipper’s text messages in which he ‘referred to female genitalia as similar to mussels.’ Wikipedia’s words but the politest it could be put. Still the Prime Minister preferred to focus on insulting the Opposition Leader. I don’t particularly care for Tony Abbott either, but I have never noticed that he was particularly chauvinist. What I have noticed is that Labor Ministers have a tendency to go on the offensive about the Opposition whenever they are asked to answer to their many policy failures.
At first many of us, men and women, thought it would be great to have a woman as Prime Minister. It soon became obvious to many of us that Julia Gillard is just a politician like any other whatever gender.