Post-#qanda review – June 13th 2011

In Q&A Evaluations on June 13, 2011 by mjwill91


Topics: Live exports, party reform, the NT intervention, Julia and Tim


Peter Garrett – Minister for School Education, Early Childhood and Youth

Pre Episode Impressions:

I swear that I was legitimately trying to do a proper write-up of my pre-episode impressions of Garrett, but I got side tracked by this hilarious compilation of his “dancing” that I think does a pretty good job summing up my pre-ep impressions:




Contribution to the discussion:

Good lord, I can’t believe that I once felt like one day I’d become a member of the ALP. Garrett steam-rolling over questions of sensible reform with basically “Everything is fine, love the ALP” was disheartening. Frankly, if it weren’t for the fact that the alternative is completely reprehensible I’d wish swift death on the party.

Garrett’s pathetic attempt to justify the more racially geared components of the NT intervention was particularly disgusting. How anyone could claim that the intervention wasn’t racially discriminatory AND YET for some reason the Racial Discrimination Act has been suspended… hmmmm…..

Post Episode Wrap-Up & Evaluation:

Disappointing… actually disgusting. Any sort of lingering doubt that i’d want to become a member of the Labor party has been swept away completely. Usually i’m not so annoyed by politicians failing to do anything but follow party the party line… but… it’s something about Garrett’s “devolution” from activist to political hack that is particularly disheartening

Rating: 2/10


Natalie Pa’apa’a – lead singer ‘Blue King Brown’ and activist 

Pre Episode Impressions: 

Never even heard of her before- I’m going to listen to some of her music before the episode starts.

Contribution to the discussion:

Pa’apa’a’s (woah apostrophe nightmare) explanation of youth thinking re: not joining the Labor party because the ALP and LNP are becoming too similar & their unwillingness to listen to the issues that really matter to Gen X and Gen Y was succinct and earned a well deserved round of applause from the audience. Not only that, it accurately summed up why I could never join why the ALP or the LNP in their current form.

Her criticism of the NT intervention, specifically that it was done in the best of intentions, however due to it being “top heavy”, it feeling like it was “imposed” by white Australia onto Indigenous Australian communities, that some found it more destructive than productive was good, enlightening even. However, she was unable to suggest any sort of alternative to the intervention- and that is where the problem lies.

Post Episode Wrap-Up & Evaluation:

Easily the best panelist of the evening. Not afraid to speak her mind, unwilling to bow/acquiesce to questioning from Wells and Katter. I felt that her frustration re: the intervention was admirable, I also felt that she didn’t have any sort of idea as to an alternative to the admittedly fairly reprehensible intervention, which more often than not is the norm when it comes to intervention critics.

Rating: 6/10


Bob Katter – Independent MP 

Pre Episode Impressions: 

Ah, the “Mad Katter”. I don’t know how anyone wouldn’t have any sort of impression of Katter before tonight’s show. Seriously. Someone would need to be under a rock, in a cave, on Mars with fingers in their ears to not know of/ or at least heard of (or have heard) Katter before. Tonight is going to be very interesting. Katter doesn’t like being interrupted, nor does he like being asked “awkward” questions…. in short: I don’t think Katter is going to like tonight.

Contribution to the discussion:

Sometimes it’s as if Katter lives in his own little world, where things are just a little bit different than the real world, and the default mode of communication is yelling. His interesting version of economics, that I like to call “Katternomics” is a thing to behold. I’d like to talk more in depth re: Katter talking about the specifics of his new political party, but I literally couldn’t understand everything second word he said.

Katter’s “animation” re: one rule for white people and one rule for black people and the inherent racism of the indigenous intervention and his anger direct at the current government’s lackadaisical attempts re: closing the gap was… unexpected. I think it surprised me that I found myself actually agreeing with Katter.

Post Episode Wrap-Up & Evaluation:

Well, we survived- just, despite his best efforts to turn it into “Bob Katter’s Yarn Hour”- which actually would be an interesting program- perhaps Sky News could give him an 8:30pm, 1 hour once a week type show called just that. Whilst i didn’t appreciate the rambling about his new political party (that I’m going to predict will be a total flop policy follow-through wise), his passion re: indigenous rights was admirable.

Rating: 5.5/10


Mike Carlton – journalist and commentator 

Pre Episode Impressions: 

I have no negative opinion of Mike Carlton pre-episode. I’ve enjoyed his work and he’s one of the few commentator’s that are able to commentate without sounding like an overtly left or right hack/ blaring mouthpiece for a specific cause or issue. Should be interesting to watch- i fear he’ll be underused.

Contribution to the discussion:

Carlton’s criticism of the ALP as a “withering and dying, empty shell” seems overly harsh, however I’m going to have to agree. The turn away from unionism and the ALPs refusal to bend on social issues like marriage equality has begun choking Labor.

Post Episode Wrap-Up & Evaluation:

Interesting panelist, ultimately underused- as I predicted.

Rating: 3/10


Concetta Fierravanti-Wells – Shadow Minister for Ageing and Mental Health

Pre Episode Impressions: 

This will be the second time that Fierravanti-Wells will have been on Q and A this year. Given the first appearance, I really can’t say I hold much hope that her performance tonight will be any different from last time, namely: sticking to party lines et al. Hopefully she wont spend her time on the panel tonight trying to show off emails from her constituents that all seem to fervently support the Coalition’s policies.

Contribution to the discussion: 

Oh lord. Within the first 20 seconds of her talking she began talking about emails she had gotten about the live export outrage. Her particular hypocrisy when it came to criticising Garrett for not talking Faulkner’s reforms seriously, then in the next sentence dismissing Reith’s proposed reforms of the Liberal Party was particularly disgusting.

Her dismissal of progressives was hilarious…. silly conservatives.

Post Episode Wrap-Up & Evaluation:

Yet another politician wastes an hour extolling the benefits of their party whilst suggesting that a vote for anyone else might as well be a vote for the Nationalsozialistische Deutsche Arbeiterpartei… hmm, very original Ms Fierravanti-Wells… and not at all tiresome.

Rating: 2/10

– Well… It wasn’t a “brilliant” episode… but I suppose compared to last week’s Tayshus-induced abortion it was ok.
I’ll leave you with this, a video of “The Best PM we never had” (definitely not my words) doing his best Garrett impression:


– Matt. @mjwill90


6 Responses to “Post-#qanda review – June 13th 2011”

  1. Totally agree with you about Peter Garrett. I remember being really surprised that he joined the ALP. with his his pre- politics convictions about the environment and humanitarianism I would have thought him more of a Green! Strange to see him become something he once appeared to despise.

    Really think they should stop over the top people who are just a pain like Katter . They take up so much valuable time and I so want to here what the sensible people have to say but they just can’t seem to get much of a word in.
    Bron ☺

    • Agreed. What do you think of next week’s “Gen Y Special” concept? Samah Hadid was brilliant when she was on the show last and i’m cautiously optimistic when it comes to Josh Thomas…. I suppose i’m just glad that we’ll have a week without front-bench hacks trying to tell us why their policies are sanctioned by Christ himself whilst their opponent’s policies are the words of the devil, branded into the flesh of newborn babies.

  2. Good wrap up Matt but I have to disagree with one assessment and that is regarding Labors policy ambitions. A lot of unionists are dead against gay marriage period. I am a delegate and can safely say there would be less than 5% of our members who would support such a policy and at least 50% are openly very hostile to the concept of poofters getting married !

    Labor have been effectively wedged in many policy areas by both factions of the party and are losing voters to the greens as a result.

    • whilst i’m not a fan of the derogatory language you used (although I believe you used it in the context re: general perception of gay marriage by people in the union movement using pejorative language associated) I’m in agreement when it comes to the position the ALP is in, specifically how it seems to have done quite a good job getting itself wedged on numerous policies.

      However, the ALP will need to think long and hard as to whether the party as it is now can survive given plummeting union support as seen through continually decreasing union membership or whether it will need to become a more socially progressive party to attempt to “steal/ steal back” voters that have abandoned it for the Greens.

  3. Oops I forgot to put it in ” ” to highlight the context but you picked it up anyway as it isn’t a term that I would use generally.

    If Labor abandon the workers and give them over to the Liberals they will be left with progressives who really don’t number enough to form govt.

    The reason for falling union membership is the generally good employment conditions in the country which were won in general by Labor.

    • Agreed. The federal ALP are in quite a position at the moment, it’ll be interesting to see moving forward how the party will have to change in order to please its’ two “masters” if you will. I think inevitably change will be brought about through sheer necessity- for example: I don’t see the ALP moving on marriage equality unless it’s in such a bad position, that it thinks it can “win” the votes of social progressives by changing the party’s position on it. Unless something like that were to happen, i can’t see them changing their position any time soon.

      Which is a shame, because as well as being a “workers” party, it’s always presented itself as a party of social progression as well, the sort of party that someone who believes in social justice and progression could vote for, without having to vote Green, something many people are still rather uncomfortable doing.

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