By Mike Welsh
Dr Chris Bourke, you are an absolute disgrace to your profession. Politics not Dentistry.
The Dentist turned ACT Minister for Children and Young People was surgically sliced and diced on air by 2CC’s Tim Shaw yesterday morning. Tim Shaw? Seriously ? There must be some sort of mistake.
Dr Chris Bourke MLA would have to be the only guest to be “mauled” by Tim Shaw during the Demtel man’s short career on Angry Old Man’s Radio in Canberra.
Dr Bourke, Tim Shaw is a nice guy, everyone’s mate. How could you let yourself become Shaw’s bunny? There is a far greater risk of being savaged by his predecessor Mark Parton who never raised his on-air voice in anger at anyone. If Parton ever did jump off the the fence it was to “respectfully rebuke” someone and it was always swiftly followed by an apology.
As a former staffer at the station I was phoned by a CC tragic telling me of the scintillating shellacking of Bourke. Shaw, the “Mitchell Mugger”, struck during an interview which centred on the ACT Government’s lack of transparency over the tragic death of a local child.
A few years back, after I had given Bourke (then a new to the Education portfolio) an on-air “education” of his own , Chief Minister Katy Gallagher confessed that her Government had little choice but to drag the rookie MP off a “very thin bench”. “What can you do Mike?” was Katy’s frustrated lament.
Her solution at the time would appear to be another waste of ACT taxpayers money, if yesterday’s pathetic performance is anything to go by. Bourke used the same mealy mouthed statements as he employed with me a few years back.
Dr Bourke was ordered to undergo expensive “media training” from a Sydney based consultant to avoid being torn another new one by the likes of me, a jumped up disc jockey who couldn’t believe his luck when an incompetitent media advisor served Bourke up on a platter. I humbly offered to give them both (pollie and the advisor) Media training free of charge but Katy politely declined.
When will they learn? If you are going to talk to people like me (media mongrels) then you need to talk to people like me first. It makes perfect sense to me.
The Member for Ginninderra is a good dentist but he’s fast running the risk of the embarrassing political epitaph on a “plaque” (Dental Dad Joke) gleefully donated by Shaw….. I went on the Tim Shaw Radio show and was excoriated with a nice set of steak knives.
You know its footy season in Melbourne when……
…at the end of the off ramp outside the Richmond Railway station a small, animated man, decked out head to toe in the instantly recognisable red and black colours of his team rapidly approaches.
And as he propels himself past you, you dressed in the unmistakeable navy blue strip of your team, this deliriously happy Bombers fan lets fly with ….”eat sh*t you f***ing c***s”…..
No explanation was required – the essence of the wheelchair wordsmith’s message was abundantly clear. Nor was any personal offence taken by we three Canberrans wearing the “offending” apparel of the “blue baggers”, who had just suffered an humiliating defeat at the nearby MCG, bringing to an end four long seasons of horror for the Red and Black brigade. Only momentarily stunned, we quickly recovered and pissed ourselves laughing once the spray from the colourful gobfull had subsided. Unexpected, but after all to be expected in Melbourne in the shadow of the MCG late in Winter.
Of course people in wheelchairs are perfectly entitled to get excited when their football team wins, particularly when that team has been to hell and back. Of course wheelchair bound people have a perfect right to heckle rival fans outside the Richmond Railway Station and any place they so desire. But when “eat sh*t you f***ing c***s” is hurled in your direction at close range and the giver of the “directive” is a disabled person, apparently you just have to wear it. There appears to be no choice but to wear it.
Abuse of this nature from an able bodied person in the same location and under similar circumstances would almost certainly be returned with interest and potentially end up in a “blue”. And if there’d been a member of the constabulary nearby there may have been an “awkward” situation. Not to mention the women and children among the scores of fans streaming away from the “G”.
The abuse wasn’t aimed at our weight, skin colour, sexuality or age, but rather our football team and therefore, in some circles of society, more than likely considered far less offensive.
A Google search of ‘how to respond to strong abuse from a disabled person in a public space’, returns virtually nothing.
By Mike Welsh
My former radio colleague Mark Parton is about to become an ACT Politician. Something he’s coveted for a very long time. He’s well qualified and ready to hit the ground running but I’m begging him not to.Formally endorsed by the Liberal Party on Monday and 3 months out from the ACT election, the former 2CC Breakfast personality is already speaking and acting like a typical Politician.
…..”His comments suggest he’s ready, willing and able to employ the disingenuous dexterity required to be able to stand for nothing while sitting on the fence and toeing the party line”…..
In an article by Kirsten Lawson in the Canberra Times on Tuesday; Mark Parton: An about-turn on poker machines in the casino; probed on his first political back flip, Parton said people were not “born as robots with the party mantra….. and from time to time would hold a different position to their part “…adding….”I think one of the healthiest things about the Liberal Party is that it is such a broad church. I know that there will be some things that we may disagree on. But I’m also a team man”….
Has “Parto” revealed exactly the type of representative he’ll be? In resorting to the well-worn and mealy mouthed broad church slogan (universally the refuge of politicians seeking to escape scrutiny) he’s hinted he may be just another of the many unimaginative and compliant members who consistently inhabit the ACT Assembly. The last thing Canberra needs. His comments suggest he’s ready, willing and able to employ the disingenuous dexterity required to be able to stand for nothing while sitting on the fence and toeing the party line.
The ACT assembly already has more than its quota of dickheads, dopes and duds. What it needs is somebody who refuses to become just another party politician. Somebody who is a genuine representative and advocate for their community.
Parton will win a seat in the Assembly and he deserves to. He’s young, energetic and passionate and could bring something refreshing to politics in the ACT. But does he have the balls to do it? The national electorate just had something very succinct to say about professional politicians and party politics. They don’t like them. The electorate, real people, wants genuine people to represent them not puppets.
Mark Parton has a golden opportunity to become that “real” representative. He knows how to use the media and is well connected to the community. His endorsement so far appears to be a political party opportunistically picking an individual with a strong profile who can swing a few extra votes at the election and then fall in line with the party agenda.
Please Mark, don’t become just another politician. Though if you do who knows, a few years down the track you could end up in the Senate when your party does a “Gary Humphries” on Zed Seselja.