Holy Soundbites! His Holiness Father Howard has found god. If nobody claims her in 30, days, Ducklips Howard can keep her.
Both Rudd and Howard know that a webcast aimed at the Christian minority vote has the potential to backfire electorally. Unlike extremist America, the massive majority of Australians are more likely to mock the madness than to marvel at miracles. And even some Australians who publicly profess to be “Christian” will, in the locked vaults of their secret musings, also recognize the cloaked pretence of these new Pulpit Politics.
So Howard and Rudd choose their words carefully, avoiding too many overtly “religious” terms which could inflame the secular majority. So I’m taking some of their suave propaganda phrases and feed them into the FunkyPix2’s Forensic Crap-Detecting Scanner:
HOWARD: "…there are people of good faith in all political parties"
RUDD: "…the question of personal faith provides a compass point for my life, it also therefore helps shape the values which I hold to be true"
The term “of good faith” will be heard differently by the Christian and by the non-Christian. The non-Christian is accustomed to hearing it in everyday contexts, even in a secular bull-pit like Parliament. The doggedly-believing Christian is more likely to interpret it as Faith = Good, as an affirmation of their Christianity - because that’s precisely the stuff they crave to hear. They'll hear it with capital letters. Howard has cunningly chosen words around which the already-converted can "hear" glowing halos. They grasp hungrily for any confirmation of their beliefs, and the higher the percieved rank of the speaker the better.
But Howard and Rudd are both aware that this selective semantic filtering can work either way, according to the viewpoint of the individual listener. Rudd’s statement is incontestable, but is merely a statement of historical fact. Anyone who lives in Western nations has had their language, thoughts, and habits basically moulded by church traditions, eg, the Work Ethic, moral code, etc. Another example: the basic characteristics of western music from Mozart to Elvis or Madonna have their roots in the music of the church. No-one raised in western culture can escape a heritage heavily under-pinned by Judeo-Christian values.
Listened to objectively, Rudd’s statement is born of a secular-humanist philosophy, but will be selectively filtered as “religious” by whosoever desperately seeketh to interpret it that way. Rudd has side-stepped directly describing his faith as ‘Christian’, but instead made it a "personal faith", a savvy approach which is flexible and inoffensive enough to pacify most Australians.
In Australia's sudden rash of sympathy with Christianity, both Rudd and Howard have clearly taken a cynical leaf from Bush and his vote-starved Republican war-mongers . However, unlike Hillary Clinton’s obviously fake and fuzzy Damascus Road epiphany, Rudd has deliberately not over-stated his case in the effort to squeeze a tiny vote from a minority interest group. In fact, there is more to be lost by being dishonest to himself – he knows it’s a case of Majority Rules, even in the gerry-mandered electorate of Heaven.
...... P O R N O G R A P H Y
Now that I've revived your attention, I'll continue with the next thing our dear leaders said:
HOWARD: …offering free internet porn filter to parents at a cost of AU$189 million
RUDD: …offering Family Impact Statements for every submission to Cabinet
The Flying Position. Let’s see if Howard can muzzle the internet where other countries have all failed. Except Burma, which has only one ISP – controlled rigidly by its nice family-friendly military Dictatorship. Oh, I forgot… Australia’s going that way too, with Howard's Indigenous Intervention.Howard offers the traditional Right-wing conservative THOU-SHALT-NOT approach. He’s a prime example of the old-fashioned Father-figure, enforcing formulaic and stern parental authority, top-down. He clearly doesn’t understand that the Internet ultimately can’t be controlled – has he never heard of Proxy Servers? Probably not… Howard barely knows how to look up his email, let alone do rooly hard things like cut-and-paste. He's too OLD to be Prime Monster anymore.
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By contrast, Kevin Rudd’s centre/left-wing ‘bottom-up’ approach seeks to present information to law-makers so they can come to individual solutions to each new circumstance. It reflects the “nurturing parent” model usually preferred by the Left.
John Howard pines for the Good Old Days when you could see porn from the privacy of your car. Why do you think the old Ford Zephyrs had venetian blinds? Drive-ins are how Johnny discovered girls.
All in all, the Rudd option is more democratic, consultative and concilliatory. And more practical.
……………….......................... Porn in Braille
Politicians’ attempts to flatter Christian voters are likely to be interpreted as suck-holing and could well backfire electorally.
Nicey-poo Christian habits are not always as honourable as they attempt to appear. As in politics, dark agendas can lurk behind façades of ritualistic sincerity.
“Come to me, sweet little boys, and sit on my knees, BWAA HA HA HA HA”. Rumour has it that Pope Hilarious I is arriving in the Northern Territory as Padre Howard’s Secret Weapon in his Invasion of Aboriginal Communities. The pope is also reputedly hell-bent on closing down this FunkyPix2 website. To find out why, look for “Browse by Category” in the sidebar 8 then click on “Religious Issues”.