Let me tell you, weeks like last week don’t come along every week. Calling it extraordinary would be the understatement of the century, as even seasoned political observers would attest. For starters, this nation’s government considered several highly important issues and my speeches in the Senate were some of the most passionate, articulate and emotional presentations the Parliament has ever seen. They had everything: shouty voice, soft voice, pauses for effect, graphs as props, and moral appeals to right and wrong. I’m exhausted just thinking about them. One of my speeches was so powerful that I went to do it again for Susan and the staff back in the office but Susan yelled at me to get down off the desk.

Those speeches, on a range of topics, were also highly effective. Sometimes I can’t believe how many words people waste trying to prove a point, like that something is wrong, when that thing is just self-evidently wrong. For instance, men shouldn’t have relations with other men for no more complicated reason than they just shouldn’t; it’s unnatural. Even a 12-year-old has enough anatomical knowledge to know that if God intended one piece of the jigsaw to connect naturally, without awkward and unnecessary force, to another piece of the jigsaw, he would’ve made the sticky-out bits and the gappy bits match up. It’s not rocket surgery.

But there was obviously one event last week that eclipsed even my speeches for sheer extraordinariness: the coalition leadership explosion. No matter where you sit on the political horseshoe there was no possible reaction to the Liberal meltdown last week other than disbelief and shock. As I write this article, Malcolm Turnbull seems to be a dead man walking, and there’s even a chance that by the time you read this article he won’t be leader of the opposition anymore. Momentous times, these are; history in the making.

And I have tried as hard as possible to write myself into that history. After it became clear that Turnbull was being rejected by his own party I sent him an email proposing that he quit the Liberals and join Family First, offering him the incentive of deputy leadership of the Parliamentary Family First party. Malcolm’s wealth and fundraising prowess is well known and Family First could really do with a bit of help in the cash department. I felt quite pleased with myself for having such a good idea and taking the initiative so I excitedly told Susan about it, however she informed me that Turnbull is a follower of the anthropomorphic global warming faith — a faith I simply cannot share. I have very little time and respect for people who throw themselves so fully into something for which there is no actual proof, letting it shape their lives, guide their thinking, and act as their intellectual and moral compass. The global warming faith, as we all now know after the shocking revelations of ClimateGate, revolves around nothing more than some words and symbols of dubious authorship and authenticity masquerading as fact. Kicking myself for defying my scientific training (did you know I’m an engineer?) and letting my impulses run away with me, I called the IT department and asked them to intercept the email before its delivery. It’s lucky I sent it after 5pm.

But then I had a better idea: why not run for the opposition leadership myself? I’m a global-warming sceptic, I’ve got lots of leadership experience, and I scrub up pretty good on the telly. I decided not to let Susan in on this one because my name already had two crosses next to it on the whiteboard so I ran it past Nick Xzennophone instead. Nick said it was an awesome idea and I should totally throw my hat in the ring, and even though he wouldn’t be able to say anything publicly I had his complete and total support. He said that Australian democracy had been waiting for a leader such as me since Federation in 2001. Buoyed by Xzennophone’s words, I launched myself instantly into campaigning and networking, going from office to office through the House. None of the secretaries would let me through to see their respective MPs or Senators so I just left each of them one of the “Vote 1 Steve Fielding” posters that I made on Xzennophone’s photocopier (Susan deleted my code from the one in our office.) On the back of each poster I wrote a personal message, thanking the recipient in advance for their support and promising them a Big M next time I see them at the cafe.

Looking through the numbers I can obviously rely on Xzennophone’s vote, while the Greens wouldn’t want me even if they put down their bongs long enough to vote. Barnaby is a possible while the rest are totally up in the air. That makes two definites, half-a-dozen negatives, one possible, and lots of unknowns (I must remember to go and count the chairs in the green and the red chambers.) One thing I am definite about, however, is that a lot of people are disinfected by their own parties’ policies and I reckon I stand a decent chance of picking up their support.

So now I wait. The media seems to believe that Joe Hockey and Tony Abbott are the frontrunners, going so far as to give them affections such as as “cuddly” and “avuncular” (they’re just euphemisms for “fat”) and “pugilist” (I don’t know what that means but I can be it, too), but as usual the overwhelming Leftist bias of Australia’s political journalists means that they refuse to even consider the chances of a humble boy from Resevoir, despite the fact that the boy from Resevoir fought his way into Parliament against the odds. The media has had many good laughs at my expense over the years, but I think there’s a fairly decent chance that come 10am tomorrow morning I’ll be the one having the last laugh.

Until next time.

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Peter Fray
Peter Fray
Editor-in-chief of Crikey
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