Saturday, 28 January 2012
What I utterly condemn is when protests turn violent, the way we saw the violence yesterday.
J Gillard Press conference 27 January
How annoying. This blog took quite a while going through the debate around the Constitution to set out the position of indigenous people in relation to the state. It needn’t have bothered. All we needed was a Canberra farce and we have all we need to know.
Personally, this blog blames the meeja. Not only did it have a hand in setting up the demo, but then deliberately edited out of its coverage the violence of the demonstrators that justified both the Prime Minister’s condemnation of it and the extraordinary actions of the AFP to protect her from it.
Surely it must have been edited out. Because none of the footage seen by this blogger showed any violence. Sure, there was that cop dude looking cool in his sunnies smacking that guy around. But other than that, the rest of the footage must have been edited to wickedly make it look as though our Prime Minister and her security had grossly over-reacted.
It’s been fortunate that there are still journalists around with long enough memories to recall times when the Prime Minister faced real violent demonstrators and that the job of the AFP is not only to protect the Prime Minister but also the dignity of the office. They spectacularly failed to do that on Thursday against a demo that wasn’t even aimed at the Prime Minister.
In fact the demonstration was so much not against the Prime Minister that a member of her staff has had to resign for his part in helping to bring it about. Since he was part of her media unit, he definitely should have gone, since he let his boss go out to face the press and escalate it by making an issue of the violence of demonstrators, for which, curiously, no arrests were made. Now having hyped up the demonstration as a major security issue, Gillard’s unit is being accused of having drawn Abbott into it. Good grief.
In reality, both Hodges and Gillard were doing much the same thing, both using the indigenous protestors to cover up problems elsewhere. Hodges was trying to stir up the Tent Embassy to go for Abbott, following in what is now a well-worn tactic of a government incapable of offending anyone with an advertising budget, of making Abbott the issue. Gillard was making claims of violent demonstrators to justify a security fiasco from which she came off not that well.
Meanwhile indigenous demonstrators must no doubt be thinking this is all about them – rather than, as usual, merely in the way of a state out of control.
Posted by The Piping Shrike on Saturday, 28 January 2012.Filed under The Australian state