"Mineral wealth, newly-elected centre-left government, and no bloody ice. And about as far as you can get from George bloody Osborne… "
And, as I noted in the Elton post, a place that's a lot less diverse than the UK, especially his old stamping ground of London.
Mr B, whatever else he may be, is an intelligent, competent chap. I wonder who we'll import to replace him ?
I used to chaff him somewhat for not having children, on the grounds that only parents should be able to vote on matters affecting children (i.e. most things). The poor chap's now running on one cylinder after a series of unfortunate events, but he mustn't think that centre-left Aussie Premier Kevin Rudd is going to let him off sprogging :
I was at a function where Kevin Rudd was giving the keynote address. He talked about the ''crisis'' of Australia's ageing population and the various economic challenges we will face as a result.Hah ! Kevin Rudd seems more switched on to the demographic implications of failure to reproduce than any UK Labour MP. Mr Band's duty stands plainly before him.
Arguments were made about superannuation and the strain on healthcare. But there was a deeper message: young people (women in particular) are failing in their civic duty to reproduce. Apparently, gen Y is to blame for the inverted population pyramid.
There were hundreds of people in the room but only a handful under 30. As one of the under 30-crowd, I shuffled nervously, hoping no one would recognise me - and my empty womb - as the deeply unpatriotic and traitorous felons that we are.
After Rudd came off stage, he spoke to me and the few other under-30s (we had congregated for strength in numbers). He extended his points about the problems with the ageing population and the financial problems gen Y will incur when the baby boomers become pensioners.
At that point one of my friends introduced me, dropping in that I am completing a PhD. At this, Rudd rolled his eyes and in a terse voice lacking any sense of irony remarked that is the "excuse" that "all" young women are using nowadays to avoid starting families. Since then I've come up with numerous one-line retorts, but in the moment I just froze in shock.