(Image: Tom Red/Private Media)

Spinning out Scott Morrison has long been able to rely on the press gallery to report his announcements as though they were actions. But this year we’ve seen that slide into a truly bizarre set of affairs, where he’s getting credit for a repeated non-announcement.

In February, in his heavily leaked National Press Club address, the prime minister refused to commit to the already-too-late 2050 target for net-zero emissions. But saying he would like to do it was portrayed as evidence that he was shifting to “a more ambitious climate change target”. And today’s winking announcement that he would be standing up for the battlers in manufacturing and regions (not allowing his climate change policy to be “dictated by the inner cities”) apparently doesn’t change that — according to The Australian and the ABC, the “shift” or “inching” towards net zero emissions continues.

It must be wonderful for a politician to be so consistently met more than halfway.

Milkshake sloth’d Will they never learn? With the release of yesterday’s bizarre video campaign aimed at explaining the concept of consent through laboured metaphor and dialogue out of a David Lynch nightmare, Tips was put in mind of other government videos the kids would call hashtag epic fails (in a government ad today or about a decade ago in real life).

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There was Stoner Sloth: the New South Wales government spent half-a-million dollars illustrating to kids the horrors of mishearing your mother at dinner or being out of it at a party because of weed. Each ad ends with a young person saying “stoner sloth?” like they’re just as confused as we are about the point of it all.

Then of course there’s “gamechangers”, the 2017 recruitment ad for the Department of Finance promising young people what they really want in a workplace: paleo pear-and-banana bread. That the acting was so wooden you could build a table from it is no fault of the participants, non-actors delivering lines that could only have been generated by a computer attempting and failing to learn the patterns of human speech.

Thanks for the memes Gina Rinehart’s larf-a-minute comedy book may have looked like a knocked together collection of Facebook memes about how dumb Democrats are, but what we didn’t realise is that it was actually a knocked together collection of Facebook memes about how dumb Democrats were. A tipster sent us a disclaimer at the front of the book which makes clear the publishers make no claim to the copyright of the book’s jokes. Apparently the meme collection was published as “a website” for three months to allow their authors to “assert their moral rights”.

But if you’re the savage wit behind that picture of Barack Obama leaning back smiling with the caption “How many Democrats does it take to solve a problem? No one knows, it’s never happened”, fret ye not. You can contact the website and your “interests will be recognised”.

Good yarns Well this is a shock. On the excerpt for The New Yorker’s review of the documentary WeWork: Or the Making and Breaking of a $47 Billion Unicorn, author Lizzie Widdicombe — or at the very least her subeditor — describes the piece as a “good yarn”, proving once and for all that calling a story a yarn is not just used by Australian journalists trying to pretend they didn’t go to private school:

That was then, this is now We note the report in today’s The Australian Financial Review that the Leppington Triangle saga — wherein a Liberal Party donor was paid 10 times what their land was worth by the federal government — involved the dawn raid of a public servant.

We’re sure the next time political enemies of the government are raided (say, to pick an entirely random example, the Australian Workers’ Union) it will be done with a similar level of discretion.