Bundy and #Watergate

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(Cartoon by Mark David / @mdavidcartoons)

Barnaby Joyce's outrageous behaviour on ABC Radio National has made a Coalition victory next month even more improbable.

BARNABY JOYCE is not an idiot. He is something far worse. He is a moderately intelligent man who falsely believes he is smarter than everyone else.

The world is full of these sort of men. It would be easy to dismiss them, except somehow these dolts seem frequently to find a way of weaseling themselves into positions of importance. And once there, their unfathomable self-confidence, combined with their manifest ineptitude, invariably causes chaos and calamity.

Barnaby Joyce is a case in point. To be quite blunt, Barnaby is a toad. Both in his repellent appearance and his disgraceful behaviour. Not a cane toad, because he doesn’t quite qualify as a Queenslander, but still a horrible horny toad.

As you will have read in IA over several years, as we have diligently reported Barnaby Joyce’s repeated idiocies and calumnies, the Nationals MP for the district of New England is a liar, a cheat, an alleged lech, a sock-puppet, a buffoon, a clown, a boor, a drunkard, a laughing-stock and a terrible bully. And those are just some of his better attributes. Yet still this man somehow keeps getting elected by large margins in his rural NSW electorate, where he still remains inexplicably popular.

And all the while, lingering just under the surface, are repeated hints and allegations of corruption. (We list just some of the scandals Barnaby Joyce has been embroiled in since he entered politics in the full version of this article, in the members only area.)

This all came to the surface once more this week, in the affair dubbed by Twitter as #Watergate. This is the scandal first reported by Independent Australia and other independent news websites, only now being slowly picked up by the mainstream media. It involves Barnaby Joyce as Water Minister approving a record-breaking $80 million water licence buyback to a company domiciled in the Cayman Islands. A company set-up by current Energy Minister Angus Taylor — at that time merely a major Liberal Party donor.

The controversy was covered by ABC Insiders on Sunday, where panellist Patricia Karvelas caused a minor sensation when she received and read out an exculpatory text from Joyce live on-air.

Perhaps stung by the intense criticism she received in social media for providing this free Government advertising on the public broadcaster, Karvales invited Joyce onto her Radio National Drive program the following night.

Barnaby duly rang in — and that's when things got crazy. Really crazy.

Now, it is impossible to know whether Barnaby Joyce was actually drunk during this interview, because there is no drug and alcohol testing regime for Federal politicians. Regrettably. For those on the public teat, that privilege is reserved for the lowly unemployed.

So, while it is impossible to know whether Joyce was actually intoxicated in that interview, we certainly can say he gave the strong impression of being drunk. Which amounts to much the same thing, really.

And not just drunk ‒ or apparently drunk ‒ but belligerently, angrily drunk.

Listen to the interview in full HERE. It is quite an experience.

Joyce refused to answer any questions about his role in the water buyback, spending almost the whole interview speaking loudly over the top of Karvelas, who showed admirable patience and restraint in the face of this obnoxious bully.

Barnaby’s main defence was that Labor had, in the past, also purchased water back off the same company. What he didn’t say was that Penny Wong as Water Minister in the Gillard Government had spent less than one tenth of the amount, under open tender, that Joyce sent to associates of his cabinet colleague.

Joyce was too busy saying “Labor, Labor, Labor, Labor,” repeatedly, like a demented parrot, to bother providing any substance to his slurred explanations.

Some people seem inclined to believe the Coalition will stage a miraculous comeback and win the forthcoming Federal Election. But with this scandal emerging and with much more still to be revealed, we believe, the odds of such a surprise victory seem remote.

How can people vote for a political grouping that includes people like Barnaby Joyce? How can people even in his own seat vote for him?

It is high time for the cleansing waters of democracy to flow and wash away this dirty and dismal administration.

We need people with vision and integrity to steer this nation. Not bellicose, half-smart drunks who unaccountably believe they are smarter than the rest of us.

This is only half the story! The other section of this editorial , 'Barnaby Joyce's brilliant career' may be read in the IA members only area. It takes less a minute to subscribe to IA and costs as little as $5 a month, or $50 a year — a small sum for superb journalism and alot of extras.

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