Michael Kroger looks down on Independents like Cathy McGowan (Images via Fairfax)

In a repugnant and patronising radio interview Liberal boss Michael Kroger showed why his Party has squandered what little goodwill they have left in the electorate, writes contributing editor-at-large Tess Lawrence.

DOES MICHAEL KROGER get off putting down Indi's Cathy McGowan?


Ergo women, independent politicians and maybe anyone who hasn't got a penis.

Make that a white penis. Shaken not stirred. And while we're at it, one that swells with fake blue blood; wannabe Austocrats. You know the type. Full of themselves.

In a repugnant and patronising radio interview a couple of weeks ago, this arrogant git, president of Victoria's division of the Liberal Party, exhibited why the gormless intellects whose dicta continue to infect an already diseased party have squandered what little goodwill they have left in the electorate.  

It was a snide moment that came hot on the heels of the studded boots put into Australia's foremost football writer, media personality, The Age's multiple Walkley Award winning Caroline Wilson, who was yet again subjected to a barrage of verbal assault and misogyny, by serial bully boys Eddie McGuire, James Brayshaw and Sam Newman in an explosive story first exposed by freelance writer Erin Riley.

So Kroger's deprecating remarks, on this fact alone, certainly challenges his ability to gauge public sentiment.

He made the offensive comments to the ABC's 774 Mornings host Jon Faine on June 21st  who was broadcasting from Wangaratta to explore Indi's regional political landscape, interviewing the two main contenders, incumbent independent Cathy McGowan and Sophie Mirabella, the Liberal blabbermouth she narrowly ousted in the 2013 election and this time robustly defeated in the 2016 election.

Showcasing his overt sexism with his sly blokey-type born-to-rule superiority, Kroger made no secret of his contempt for McGowan and her kind, implying she was out of her depth in Canberra, for gawd's sake.


Here's my transcript of the offending audio, pollie waffle 'n all — and cop the condescending mansplaining:

Kroger: ... you know Jon, in the end this is about ... this is about ... do these Independent members ... does their model work and the failure of the Oakeshott, Windsor is ... is evident in Indi ... and if I could just explain it very quickly ... This is an incredibly complex business, politics, and I have seen – having been in this game for 40 years – I've seen dozens of MPs who get to Canberra and they are completely lost and Cathy McGowan, I'm sure, is an extremenly decent person and genuine to her heart, but when people like Cathy get to Canberra they are completely lost in the labyrinth of difficulties and understanding how this machine works and that's ... 

Faine: [Interrupts] ... and the alternative explanation is, that it's in fact not complicated. It's, in fact, very simple: it's about relationships, and forming and building relationships, and some people are better at it than other people ...

Kroger: ... and if you're an independent, Jon, you don't have them, which is why Oakeshott and Windsor both left Parliament because they had run out of credit in Canberra. They didn't understand how the system worked, they'd achieved very little and, you know, there's no way that Cathy can achieve anything like a Liberal National Party or, dare I say it, a Labor member if they were to win in that seat. This rural independent model has failed.

Er... no, Michael, the "rural independent model" has not failed, at least not in McGowan's case. 

McGowan, of course, was to romp it in. It was the Liberal Sophie Mirabella model that failed.

And here's the ABC audio of that exchange so you can judge Kroger's tone for yourself:


His insulting propaganda and soft lie was clearly an attempt to publicly write McGowan out of the equation — his revisionism ignoring the fact that McGowan has already served three very successful years representing Indi, thank you very much.  

In fairness, Mirabella's own failings as a viable candidate aside, she had been ruthlessly abandoned by her Liberal colleagues and Kroger in particular. Insiders have told IA Kroger's distaste for Mirabella is almost palpable and that she has long been the subject of mockery and in-house jokes. 

Aware of this, Mirabella notoriously publicly squealed about their betrayal, even as her falling star was hurtling towards Indi's earthen paddocks.


But there was something else that fuelled her wrath and dashed Mirabella's dream of being part of a political power couple. She was incandescent with rage because because Kroger and his playmates failed to give her hubby Greg a possie on the Party's administrative committee as "country male representative", in preference for the likes of Paul Mitchell (pictured below).

The Victorian Liberal Party's rising star, Paul Mitchell — presumably the sort of person Kroger feels has what it takes to succeed in Canberra (Image Snapchat via Australian Financial Review)

We remain forever indebted to Bryce Corbett of the Australian Financial Review for first introducing us to Mr Mitchell's manboobs, posted by Paul the Kroger apostle himself on Snapchat.  

No doubt Paul "The Milkman", as he's dubbed for reasons other than just freeing his nipple, will be a contestant in the next Wahine of Wangaratta quest. Let's build an Indi festival around the Wahine of Wangaratta quest and Captain Matchbox's Whoopee Band can be the judges!

WARNING! Gratuitous graphic selfie-love coming up!

Title: http://www.afr.com/content/dam/images/g/o/8/7/e/y/image.imgtype.afrArticleInline.620x0.png/1460868150195.jpg

Show us ya tits, Milkman! Oh... you already have. Paul Mitchmell, Michael Kroger's Generalissimo's pick over Sophie's hubby Greg, for the Liberal Party's administrative committee's "country male representative" (Image Snapchat via AFR)

One of the reasons McGowan succeeded where Mirabella failed in Indi is because her brand of neo "slow" (as in slow food) politics is humane, compassionate and inclusive. Why are such things regarded as syrupy by the hard alpha men of politics?

Her campaigning style is defined by community-based grassroots strategies and volunteer support — a template that is increasingly being deployed and individually tailored by other Independents and small political networks. 

The concern about Kroger's comments is that this man is considered to be a Liberal heavyweight; a sophisticated political architect.

But in the real world, supremo Kroger is more an anachronism, indicative of occified archaic thinking, that is symptomatic of the burgeoning irrelevance of the old two-party system.


He is an exemplar of a political philosophy that seeks to impose its views upon the electorate, gagging debate and dissent, locking out ordinary citizens and others from the decision making process in the venal pursuit of absolute power at the cost and inevitable corruption of democracy, as witnessed in the megalomaniacal demand by Attorney-General George Brandis to oversee all requests seeking advice from Solicitor-General Justin Gleeson, including those from the prime minister and governor-general.

These self-satisfied dudes think we should be grateful that they let us out of our cages to vote every three years, double dissolution, referendum or so. The election campaigns of both the Coalition and Labor are proof positive that dullards and ruthless carpetbaggers rule.

The results were close because we the people prefer no one party over another. Our votes for Independents and smaller groupings says it all.


Despite Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull claiming a Coalition victory this week, after Opposition Leader Bill Shorten conceded defeat, in truth, neither party can claim the confidence of the electorate.

Surely the most gutless and conniving manipulative distortion of the democratic process in the 2016 Federal election was the fact that in their desperate attempt to quash smaller parties, groupings and Independent voices, the Coalition and Labor awarded each other their preferences.

This alone is truly sickening and contemptuous of the people. They are merely ganging up on those who refuse to join in legislative thuggery, dividing the spoils between themselves even before they try to rob the electorate of our rights.

We are taken for idiots. Time and again we are misled and told lies.

The Liberal Party, like Labor, has wantonly refused to acknowledge the global warnings of the collapse and implodings of their overseas counterparts, including the United States with the PT Barnum circus-like effect of Donald Trump and ditto the United Kingdom, with Boris Johnson.


Is it too long a bow to draw links between the attitude endemic in Kroger's comments about McGowan and the findings of Sir John Chilcot's Inquiry and the decision by President George W. Bush, prime ministers Tony Blair and John Howard, and others of the Coalition of the Willing to invade Iraq in 2003 on the basis of the categoric lie that President Saddam Hussein had weapons of mass destruction?

Certainly not. They are linked by the DNA of political thuggees who have got one another's backs and are desperate to defend the indefensible, and haul a tarpaulin of spin and revisionism over the cataclysmic human disaster that is the Iraq invasion and its apalling aftermath, already responsible for the deaths of hundreds of thousands of human beings and a still rising daily body count.

Both the UK and USA are anything but united and stable government and governance are disintergrating through their own incompetence, mismanagement and indecent lust for power at any cost, including sacrificing the welfare and wellbeing of "ordinary citizens" upon the altar of big business and multinationals.

(Image via headstuff.org)


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