Friday, January 23, 2009

Schmuck Friday

(An occasional series)
This is Gough Whitlam, the ex-Prime Minister of Australia.

Don't you know who I used to be?

You might say he's the quintessential ex-Prime Minister of Australia, the Ex Man of Australian politics. He's been the ex-Prime Minister of Australia for longer than I've lived. As a matter of fact, he's been the ex-Prime Minister for over ten times longer than he's actually been the Prime Minister of Australia.

Why does he go on about it so? Why do the media go on about it so? We're never allowed to forget it: Gough Whitlam is now a somebody, but he was once a somebody that mattered. He's a guy who said, "It's Time," once upon a time. Most ex-politicians like to dwell on their achievements, but with Gough, the focus is single-mindedly, almost obsessively, focused on the achievement of his opponents, the way they managed to get the Governor-General to fire him.

I would like to propose that Gough Whitlam hereby resign from his post as Australia's quintessential ex-Prime Minister. True, it would mean giving up the spotlight and media attention naturally paid to who he once was, but he'd be able to immediately take up a post as the Man-Who-Used-To-Be-Australia's-Ex-Prime-Minister. As Australia's first former ex-Prime Minister he would enjoy a position without peer - and just imagine the media attention he'd get!

Men and women of Australia - it was time!


Dale Slamma said...

No no no no no no no no no no no. I need Gough. I drink my morning coffee out of a Gough Whitlam mug. Don't take my morning coffee away from me!

Alexis, Baron von Harlot said...

Tim, you speak blasphemies.

TimT said...

I hope the cup of morning Goughee comes stirred with some economic recession? It just doesn't taste the same if it doesn't have that authentic frisson of rising unemployment and inflation to help it go down.

Alexis, Baron von Harlot said...

Doesn't recession slow the rate of inflation, 'cause people are buying less? The inflation under Gough - so they tell me - came about because the banks printed more money, to finance infrastructure and stuff, and that lowered the value of money, but normally it's the boomtime that does the inflatin'.

Alexis, Baron von Harlot said...

When I say "the banks", I mean, y'know, the national mint or whatever it is that does the money printing round here.

TimT said...

Well kind of a good political trick if you can pull it off - recession and inflation at the same time!

Hmmm, should scurry back and do some more reading to make sure I've got my terminology right...

forlorn said...

Perhaps you refer to "stagflation" (the double whammy of low growth and rising inflation), although Americans seem to be the ones who really use that term.

My heart bleeds probably even more unapologetically than the next leftie, but I'm charmed when you write things like this. I suppose it's my iconoclastic streak and ambiguous relationship with "my own kind".

Ruby Isabella said...

I'm sure Gough would love this post. Here you are talking about him and the way they got rid of him. Australian politics can be dull so why not go on about it?

Kathy Farrelly said...

Schmuck a duck!
This is blatant plagiarism!!(sputters)
Has anyone told Caz about this?

Caz said...

Hmm, I believe, or perhaps merely imagine, that there have been previous (ad hoc) schmuck Friday's, non?

Gough is 197 years old, certainly our longest serving former Prime Minister, and one of the few to have parlayed that circumstance into a full time occupation.

Fear not Timmy, he will soon enough die, then he will be known throughout the land as Australia's quintessential dead ex-Prime Minister.

Or Australia's dead quintessential ex-Prime Minister.

Or Australia's ex-Prime Minister, quintessentially dead, since we can be almost certainly that as in ex-Prime Minstership, he will also die like no other human has ever died before.

TimT said...

Quite true. Even when Gough is ex, he is with us.

There was a previous Schmuck Friday about Hugh Mackay - I would have linked this one on Avatar Briefs but for its odd disappearance for a week!

Anonymous said...

You're a good humoured type of guy Timmy.
You remind me of my younger bro' whom I would often tease unmercifully.
Can't help it mate. It's what big sisters are renowned for!

Anonymous said...


kATHY f.

Email: timhtrain - at -

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