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The Liberals' Got Talent

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We go straight to the studio for the exciting "Liberals' Got Talent Grand Final" program, compèred by the incomparable, John Winston Howard.

HOWARD: Good evening and welcome to this night of nights for the Australian Liberal Party: our Grand Final! And don’t we have three magnificent contenders for this year’s top award?!

Let’s get started. Julie Bishop; Peter Dutton and ScoMo Morrison are waiting in the wings, ready to go.

Our judges for tonight: the irrepressible Tony Abbott and the quintessential Mr Urbane, Malcolm Turnbull. But remember, you, the public, determine our winner by phoning or texting in your choice.

Without further ado, let’s get our first contestant out here, the wonderful and ever-stylish Julie Bishop. Err, sor... Christ! I nearly said that horrible little "s" word, I just can’t say. I mean, um, ahh ... I apologise for getting the order wrong.

We kick off tonight’s show with Peter Dutton!

Dutton enters the stage to restrained applause.

DUTTON: Wonderful to be here. Tonight I’ve decided to do some impersonations – but not the usual stuff. You know what I mean … Sean Connery, Michael Caine, Barack Obama. No, none of that.

Tonight, for the first time ever on TV, I will attempt to impersonate a vegetable.

Ladies and gentlemen, I shall transform myself into a potato.

The stage lights dim, a spotlight centres on Peter Dutton's face. He puffs his cheeks out, purses his lips, tightens his eyes and magically takes on the appearance of a potato. The applause swells. Dutton smiles and bows.

DUTTON: Recently, my political philosophies have been viewed as very much in keeping with those of Donald Trump. With that in mind, I will now attempt to impersonate a Russian Salad. I invite on to the stage my dear friend, Beetroot Barnaby.

Barnaby Joyce dances on to the stage to absolutely no applause.

DUTTON: I shall again impersonate a potato and Barnaby will impersonate a beetroot. Together, we will create an impression of Russian Salad.

The two friends stand facing each other, then turn to face the front. They stand cheek to cheek as the spotlight settles on their faces. Dutton repeats his prior routine. Barnaby huffs and puffs until he turns a beetroot purple. The audience erupts with delight as they begin to resemble a Russian Salad. They walk off arm in arm, waving to the studio audience.

HOWARD: My, oh, my! Just when I thought I’d seen everything. Wonderful.

Now we have the personification of style itself, Julie Bishop!

Julie Bishop sashays onto centre stage. She says nothing. The lights dim and she stands in the circle of the spotlight. She stares and keeps staring straight ahead. Nothing seems to be happening, then she twirls around and, voila, she is in an entirely different designer outfit. 

Bishop again remains perfectly still, staring into the darkness. Suddenly, she twirls around again and is in yet another designer outfit.

The audience erupts. Bishop bows and swaggers off stage.

HOWARD: Such grace! Such beauty! Very stimulating.

Now, for our final contestant, our very own Christian from Cronulla, ScoMo Morrison!

Scott Morrison walks onto centre stage and stops at the small table set up there. On the table are three books and balanced against the table, a unicycle.

MORRISON: Some gospel music will start. I will balance on the unicycle, holding three books. When I am fully enraptured I will sing ‘Advance Australia Fair’ in tongues, while juggling three books and riding a unicycle.

The music starts. Morrison sits on the unicycle, holding the books. He closes his eyes, sways his head. The intensity grows until he starts wailing, emitting unintelligible sounds. The music stops. He starts riding the unicycle around the stage, juggling the books as he does so. His wailing, though still undecipherable, begins to follow the melody line of 'Advance Australia Fair.'

The audience sits in hushed amazement, eventually breaking into applause. He cycles off stage to their applause.

HOWARD: Well, there you have it. Our three great contestants. Now, to what our judges thought. Tony Abbott, what did you think?

ABBOTT: Ah, well, err... I thought Peter Dutton was wonderful. So creative. Impersonating a vegetable. My personal favourite.

Julie Bishop — stylish as ever, but I felt her act lacked a solid core.

ScoMo Morrison. Loved his routine. Loved the bike, loved the books, the choice of music but not crazy about the tongues.

HOWARD: And you, Malcolm?

TURNBULL: Dutton: undeniably impressive, but it is Liberals' Got Talent. Beetroot Barnaby is a National, not a Liberal. I feel there is a real concern re the question of Dutton’s legal right to present the act he did. That rules him out for me.

Julie Bishop. Wonderful performance, but more a victory of style over substance. As for ScoMo Morrison, faultless performance. Great substance. Very exciting. He’s my choice.

HOWARD: Well, there you have it. Now for the winner. The public’s choice. Soon, I will be given an envelope and inside will be the tally of the votes received by each contestant. The one with the most votes wins.

Bronwyn Bishop enters from side stage and hands John Howard an envelope. He opens it.

HOWARD: Well, here goes. In no particular order:

  • Julie Bishop — no votes.
  • Peter Dutton — no votes.
  • ScoMo Morrison — no votes

Unbelievable! This has never happened before. Not even one vote from the Australian public.                       

Guess I have the deciding vote. Well, here goes. The winner of this year’s Liberals' Got Talent Grand Final is ... John Howard — for the sake of national stability! Me. Good old me.

Bill Shorten turns off the TV and turns to his wife Chloe.

SHORTEN: I don’t know about you Chloe, but I reckon that is the best show I've seen all year!

Rocky Dabscheck is a musician/songwriter and front person for Rocky and The Two Bob Millionaires. He is also the author of 'Stoney Broke and the Hi-Spenders'.

You can purchase Rocky's book, 'Stoney Broke and the High Spenders' from the IA store here. The CD '42/68' by Rocky and the Two Bob Millionaires is also available from the IA store here. 

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