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Vale Bob Hawke

Bob Hawke is dead.

He was Labor’s longest-serving Prime Minister and arguably its best.

As you read the obituaries, take time also to reflect on the giants who served in the first and second Hawke ministries.

And the pygmies who serve us today.

Abbott’s obit

Tony Abbott brought the fires of hell upon himself when he tweeted this:

He was correct.

But his honest appraisal – written many times about Hawke when he was alive – brought a torrent of nasty abuse from people who also sought to wrap themselves in Hawke’s legacy.

And so much more was in newspaper articles, masquerading as news:

This has exposed the true grubs.

Hanson’s mad as hell and she’s not going to take it anymore

for some reason, journalists think politicians are punching bags.

Hanson’s over it. Yesterday, she fought back.

Today co-host Deborah Knight interviewed the Queensland Senator and brought up successive opinion polls that show her party’s primary vote has collapsed, almost halving over the course of the campaign.

“The latest Newspoll, it shows support for One Nation collapsing to four per cent, on par with Clive Palmer’s party,” Knight said.

“In light of all the things you’ve faced, all the scandals, all the things that have been going on, can you really blame people for having their doubts about One Nation and considering Clive (Palmer) over you?”

Senator Hanson fired back by pointing out Today’s woeful ratings, which have plummeted to catastrophic levels since Karl Stefanovic was dumped at the end of last year.

Knight was brought in to replace him and co-host the show alongside Georgie Gardner, and viewers haven’t meshed with the new format.

“I’ve actually gone up since the last election, unlike your show, Deb, since you’ve actually taken over,” Senator Hanson said. “You’ve actually gone down in your viewership.”

“Ooh, you’re having a go,” Knight interjected.

She sure was.

Watch the video at the link.

Hanson also gave us the best pitch of the entire election:

That plea will be more successful than Alex Turnbull’s robocall to the electors of Flinders (audio at the video link). Talk about tin-eared.

BTW … Alex Turnbull tweeted this ohtoshopped image of Toyn Abbott.

He’s a class act.

It’ll be as successful as the notoriously awful Operation Clark Country, where Guardian readers in the 2004 election contacted voters in Clarke County Ohio after 24 hours.

The Guardian yesterday ran up the white flag and called a halt to “Operation Clark County”, the newspaper’s ambitious scheme to recruit thousands of readers to persuade American voters in a swing state to kick out President George W Bush in next month’s election.

The cancellation of the project came 24 hours after the first of some 14,000 letters from Guardian readers began arriving in Clark County. The missives led to widespread complaints about foreign interference in a US election.

It also prompted a surge of indignant local voters calling the county’s Republican party offering to volunteer for Mr Bush.

The responses, published by The Guardian (!) were brutal:

Consider this: stay out of American electoral politics. Unless you would like a company of US Navy Seals – Republican to a man – to descend upon the offices of the Guardian, bag the lot of you, and transport you to Guantanamo Bay, where you can share quarters with some lonely Taliban shepherd boys.
United States

I am a student and life-long resident of Clark County, Ohio. I just wanted you to know that this is a wonderful idea you’ve initiated; people here love and respect the United Kingdom, especially the prime minister. I hope this campaign will be successful for your newspaper and for us voters.
Springfield, Ohio

KEEP YOUR FUCKIN’ LIMEY HANDS OFF OUR ELECTION. HEY, SHITHEADS, REMEMBER THE REVOLUTIONARY WAR? REMEMBER THE WAR OF 1812? WE DIDN’T WANT YOU, OR YOUR POLITICS HERE, THAT’S WHY WE KICKED YOUR ASSES OUT. FOR THE 47% OF YOU WHO DON’T WANT PRESIDENT BUSH, I SAY THIS … TOUGH SHIT!
PROUD AMERICAN VOTING FOR BUSH!

Shame on you for using the people of Ohio like this. The US presidental election isn’t just about foreign policy, it’s about healthcare, taxes, education, transportation, natural resources and all manner of issues with little to no impact on the people of Britain.

We live in a globalised, interconnected world. If China shuts its borders to US imports, you better believe American companies, shareholders and workers are affected. Should US citizens therefore have a direct say in Chinese policies? No – Americans should demand that their own elected leaders address the issues with their Chinese counterparts. The British have a similar voice in US policies – through your own elected representatives who have any number of diplomatic, economic and military tools at their disposal. You vote for your leaders and we’ll vote for ours. Your problem is with your leaders, not ours.
Washington DC

Maybe the reaction in Flinders will be gentler when they hear young Alex.

But probably not.