Friday, March 24, 2006

John Howard's Sense of Humour

How long can you make fun of Prime Minister John Howard before the Department of the Prime Minister & Cabinet, Australian Federal Police and the Australian High Tech Crime Centre deem satire a crime against the state? Less than 36 hours apparently.

Well known left wing trouble maker Richard Neville put up a speech purportedly from John Howard at the satirical domain, and met with this stern and overwhelming censoring of his work. Apparently on the grounds that the site was a "phishing site" though there appears to have been no attempt to obtain visitors' account numbers, passwords etc by means nefarious or blatant.

Of course, the jackboot tactics of the fascist state apparatus has only made the matter more widely known (when will they ever learn that censorship promotes the promulgation of the "undesirable" material?).

The satirical speech is now available here or as a pdf here.
There is tremendous pressure from the US for our troops to remain in Iraq, and of course mutual loyalty is a vital component of the alliance. But the longer the Coalition of the Willing remains, the more we are detested, and the more blood is shed. The country is already tearing itself apart, so I am asking you, could our departure really make it any worse?

Perhaps it is time for Iraqis to regain control of their future, and for the coalition of the willing to be willing to leave the stage. When I say this, I speak as a troubled private citizen, and not as the Prime Minister of Australia.

Flying home from India, I started to ask myself what a leader like Mahatma Gandhi would do, but I feared I would not be able to live up to the answer, unless I have some wise advice form my longtime friends. Please look into your hearts and let me know what you find.

Sadly, not every one seems to get satire, including one commenter Richard Neville quotes from Arizona:
"I would love to break both of your legs. And I am a non-violent anti-war pacifist..."

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