Friday, 13 August 2010

Explanations

I recently came into possession of Pauline Hanson's Untamed & Unashamed: The Autobiography.* Lest Hanson's subsequent flamenco routines on Dancing with the Stars and Who Wants to Migrate to the Motherland? have blurred your memory of what she was, in 1997, to an Australia that still talked about multiculturalism like it might be a bit of all right, allow me to quote from the preface she wrote (or "wrote") to her autobiography (or "autobiography") in August 2006:

Another reason why I wrote this book was the frustration of being castigated as a racist by the media and major political parties after my inaugural speech. Yet the very same policies I advocated back then are now almost populist policy, being advocated today by the federal government. For instance, proposing that immigrants should be able to speak and understand English before being allowed into Australia, taking action to stop the illegal refugee situation that was rife at my time in parliament, and a call for immigrants to be sent home if they will not live by our laws, is to name only a few of the beliefs that I made in my inaugural speech. Back then they were 'racist' statements; today the government is advocating the same.

- Pauline Hanson, Untamed & Unashamed: The Autobiography (Docklands, Vic: JoJo Publishing, 2007)

This is where I would have gone if, in some weird parallel universe, I had found myself in Mark Latham's position yesterday, asking Tony "Stop the Boats" Abbott what his role was in gaoling Pauline. I might have suggested that Abbott and the Liberal Party he rode in on wanted Hanson out of the way because they didn't want her attracting the Liberal Party's voters with the Liberal Party's Hansonian policies, that the Liberal Party of the past thirteen years had distinguished itself with its indistinguishability from far-right human-rights-denyin' idiocy. And so forth.

* It was the [ahem] lucky door prize at Poetic Justice on Tuesday night. Far be it from me to look a raffle horse in the mouth, but really. Pauline Hanson's autobiography? Fancy a gold-plated replica of Robert Menzies' toenail while you're at it? Actually, I could have chosen the money box instead. It was pink, cross between a small plastic lady and a skittle. Or Michael Phelps' biography, about Michael Phelps's life, swimming etc. I chose the Hanson. For the same reasons I would have reached for Mein Kampf, morbid curiosity and such.

16 comments:

Mitzi G Burger said...

There was much Hansonian bunkum dredged up by some Year 7 kids in the recent debate "Australia is going in the right direction", which revolved around the evils of "people smugglers". One might almost think that Abbot is leading a one-man crusade against Human Trafficking.

Lad Litter said...

Those who flocked to One Nation in 1996 were misguided. What could Hanson have offered that the Coalition, and right-wing Labor, could not?

Mitzi G Burger said...

Extra fries, LL?

Ann ODyne said...

Ms Hanson was a paid-up Liberal Party member, prior to It All Turning Nasty.

We must however, laud her for at least causing a word to join even the most-limited vocabularies - 'xenophobe' is now known by people who have never ever opened a dictionary, thanks also to a journalist who set out to humiliate Ms. Hanson.

I like to always remember that Abbott (& Costello) took legal action against a publication which described their wives' legs as thick, or was it 'open to Liberal recruitment' - one of those (it's the action, the pulping of the book, and the huge payout I recall).

Anthony said...

I'm not entirely sure that you've read Abbot's motivations in the Hanson gaoling correctly; on the other hand his role and motivations in this affair are intriguing. But in any case I suspect Latham was trying to nail Abbott on a charge of champerty

Ampersand Duck said...

I think TA should

STOP THE BOAST



I hear nothing about the election here in Nu Zeland. Part of me hates that, and a big chunk is profoundly grateful.

JahTeh said...

The flockers to One Nation were mostly dirty old men with wide open imaginations and closed minds.

TimT said...

My autobiography (written of course by someone else), will be titled 'Untamed, Unashamed, and Underpants', and you'd be un-Australian not to read it.

TimT said...

Though of course if you lived overseas it would be un-Australian of you to read it. In which case you have my full sympathies.

TimT said...

Other autobiographies to be released this year:

Untamed and Undulating!
- The personal story of one octopuses journey from rags to riches. (And I wonder who that octo could be...)

Undead, Unaware and Underthere
- One brainless zombie that lives under your bed tells (or rather garbles meaninglessly) all in this exciting autobiography, that was ghost written (by a ghost).

Un-!
A fictional autobiography, or possibly an autobiography of fiction, that it would be virtually un-Australian to un-read, and if you are already un-Australian, reading it would make you even more so.

Marshall-Stacks said...

dear Tim - please do also be sure your autobiog is not published in Sydney, then it can have 'UNABRIDGED' in big red caps across the cover.

TimT said...

Only if you promise not to be underwhelmed. ;)

Marshall-Stacks said...

and you promise to be UNexpurgated ..

Rachy said...

You can get Mein Kampf at Readings these days. Just imagine Glenn Beck and Pauline Hanson's lovechild swallowed a thesaurus.

Alexis, Baron von Harlot said...

I think it's in the library too, the library that's all of 300 metres away from where I currently sit. Should read it sometime so that I have more of an idea what I'm talking about. On the other hand, do genocidal maniacs deserve the time of day? No.

Rachy said...

Unfortunately they do because the world hasn't quite worked out how to get rid of them yet. Even if reading their stuff is like pulling teeth and pouring rock salt inside the gaping cavities.

Incidentally I just finished an analytical paper on an essay written by Wagner, the two actually have a similar writing style (rambling, lots of unnecessary big words, Romantic-in-the-instinctive-non-empirical-sense and such).

Things don't change, sadly.