If we are honest, we must all agree at least on that, that it is our shared sense of self-importance and entitlement that has brought us here, that unique and politically enabling capacity - a capacity shared by the people in this place - to imagine that we above all others in this country carry the vision and have earned the right to steer the affairs of our great nation, Australia.
You and me, Madam Speaker. There was a time, not so long ago Madam Speaker, when politics was governed by the inflexible, high-minded constraints of policy, firmly held ideology, principle and deep, committed belief. It is a cause of great happiness and excitement to me that I enter this federal parliament at a time when we have moved beyond those stultifying propositions. The Parliament I see before me today is a freer place than it has ever been, freer to follow the true calling of modern politics: to pursue enlightened self-interest.
Amazing isn't it to reflect that not so long ago those words would have been political poison This is a job after all, a piece of work, a tenure guaranteed only by our continuing popularity. Keeping those votes, nurturing that mandate: that is our primary concern. But there is an important qualification. Let's not beat around the bush; there are other principles that are the bedrock of our politics and for most of us the most important is this: that party interest comes even before personal interest. We are, Madam Speaker, participants in a team sport here, a collective enterprise in which the greater good is the good of the party.
And it is here of course that we see the true bond in this place, a bond that unites both sides of this great chamber in a common endeavour, to do what we must to be effective political performers. To put on this great show. We feed each other across the political divide. Our hostility, our mutual antipathy, is the essence of this daily parliamentary drama. It would be fair to say that bipartisanship is political death, that agreement is death. It is difference, argument, dissent and the playful colour of abuse and degradation that sustain us, that create our very purpose in this theatre of politics.
There is a constant clamour from the concerned few of course that we should do more than simply barrack with empty enthusiasm for our own side whatever the cause, that we should show independent thought or the capacity to work in some woolly notion of the national interest But be warned. That would simply be our undoing.
We are nothing in this place if not an interdependent organism, one that thrives on constant unthinking, reflexive antagonism. If I can close with one faintly philosophic point, Madam Speaker, and it is this: that I hope in my time as a member of this Parliament to pursue to the best of my capacity some notion of the truth. That is no easy thing, for there are many truths, but for those of us in this place, in this precarious path in life based on the slender strands of popularity that support and sustain us, truth must be what we make it.
Truth must be our servant, not our master. And what a golden moment this is to be entering this chamber with that understanding shared by all in this place. There has never been a better time to practice the profession of politics, never a moment when we have been so in control of the circumstances that propel the rich but safely contained drama of this place, that so richly reward and benefit each and every one of us.
And that is honesty in politics, Madam Speaker, that in truth there is no honesty at all. No honesty, no principle, no belief. Madam Speaker, we are free at last. First posted December 05, Particularly when you see what damage some eg. Rudd will do for their 'self-importance'. Alert moderator. Rudd is gone. Abbott is now this country's big problem.
Never has there been a more self centred, controlling, arrogant, thug of a leader. Transparency means nothing. Honesty means less then nothing. The law is only what can be used to bludgeon those that stand in your way. Not a day goes by that he doesn't try to put democracy to the sword.
What he was against before the election he now supports. Calling him two faced would be too polite. As I have said many times before this man is not fit to be PM. Look back to the early years of federation and you'll see that PMs have always controlled things tightly. And I would love to see you justifying yourself as PM, the country would fall apart, Abbott has no back bone and is up to his old tricks again, lies, lies and more lies, he is not running the show he Abbott is only a marionette to Murdoch.
Article was about maiden speeches. However the Abbott haters yes haters can't resist attacks on Abbott. Whilst I am not a fan of Mr Abbott I do find it disturbing how many posters on this website seem to have a pathological hatred towards this man.go here
A maiden speech for our times - ABC News (Australian Broadcasting Corporation)
Life is too short to be obsessed with what can only be described in my opinion as a very unhealthy attitude. Brian, you have to ask yourself why so many people hate him so much. I wonder if it could be his constant bleating of having principle but at the first opportunity abandons that said principle? Or is it the way he repeatedly plays the man instead of the ball? Or the way he puts his own political interests before, well, everything else? He recently made a deal with the Greens over greater transparency regarding debt but I doubt he will even keep that come July 1 next year.
Yank: Given the fact the NO human being is 'fit to be Prime Minister' and nor is it possible to be so, why are you surprised by the latest selection? All of us fall short when measured. Bettter to ask 'what can I do for my Prime Minister? One wonders where the Fairfax journalists were before the election.
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Yet today, Peter Hartcher says: "Appearing pointless and aimless, the Abbott government is in a weaker position in the polls than any new government in the 40 years of the Fairfax Nielsen poll. And that was before Christopher Pyne nominated himself as the minister most likely to be demoted for incompetence. Again, not always due to matters in the government's control.
But Abbott never gave Julia Gillard any leeway from opposition, so he should expect none now. Frustration is beginning to show. Within the government, the anger at Senate intransigence portends unpredictability. Tuesday's party room meeting was all but overtaken by a sudden swell of conservative anger at the ABC and its decision to team up with the Guardian website to break the Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono phone-tapping story. In his pep-talk, Abbott told MPs they could be ''pretty happy'' with the government's performance which he ventured, resulted from their ''dealing in the right spirit'' with the challenges facing the nation.
Are you really wondering? The answer is that they were all in the Rudd League of leakers and whisperers. Peter Hartcher never wrote an article that wasn't in favour of Rudd and Kenny was little better. Now that dear Kevin is departing they have to try and write something other than what is leaked to them. Poor short-sighted things, they were not prepared for Abbott actually winning. Your disgust at our leader must make you want to return to that "wonderland" that your name indicates. Your desire to "bring us up to the USA standard", no thanks.
Your allegations on the "shortcommings" of Our Dear Leader are only words. Can you write a few more words and offer a few facts or at least viable discussion points. Its OK if you are unable to produce evidence, of course in this great nation of ours your have the right to say what you want after the Bolt laws pass. What has our afformentioned leader done to upset you, to your lathered state. Evidence please. Thats not too much to ask, surely. Your leader not mine. Unfortunately, he is the Prime Minister of my country, but to be my leader, he would have to be a leader to begin with.
At best he is nothing but a lieing, cheating thug of a boss. But consider the positives, Yank. For the last half a decade, Labor voters have been blaming Abbott for everything that went wrong with the Government. At least now, those complaints will finally have a chance of being valid.
The very first thing our cowardly PM did, was rush over to Malaysia to apologise for lying about Labor's Malaysia Solution deal. Next he slithered over to Indonesia to apologise for his repeated Lies about "Stopping the Boats" and our "damaged relationship" with our nearest major trading nation. We now reap the benefits of Abbott, Morrison and Bishop's incompetence and lies, with our relationship now truly damaged and Bang-Bang playing with Abbott like a cat with it's prey.
How very Prime Ministerial. Now we have Hockey's Balancing the Budget Lie cruelly exposed with his inadequate management of the economy and subsequent admission that we are going backwards under this LIE-beral Government. Next we will see the Unemployment figures skyrocket, home loan interest rates go up and the Business Council will sing the praises of this inept Government.
As for the Slime that is Pyne, the less said the better. Abbott was indeed elected on a Policy of Lies, he is now delivering those Lies to the Australian public. We have never seen a more Impotent PM than this goose. I know of your union involvement yank, but no need to use the same job description for good old tony. Fair dinkum Yank, don't you ever get tired of your pathological anti-Coalition anti-Abbott posts I know I certainly do. Abbott's been there 5 minutes.
Justabout everything he proposed mandated by the election has been blocked by an obsolete Senate elected 3 - 6 years previous. A Senate that is elected proportionately and as such is far from being representative of the people of Australia. You call that democracy? I say ignoring mandates is putting democracy to the sword. Get over it Tim, Abbott has no mandate from me for anything, I didn't vote for him.
I voted Labor and so they have my mandate. You are really not thinking at all logically. All politicians have a responsibility to represent those who voted for them. That is democracy, not mandates which don't exist. Have never heard anyone other that this particular PM carry on about such things as Abbott does. In a few years when Morrison is in front of the Hague charged with crimes against humanity, where will your mandates be then?
Actually tim, in the scheme of things, if one term was represented over a 24hr period, then the pm hss hss been in the job for akmost 2hrs, and not 5mins. Not alot has happened in that time frame bar a couple of backflips and the debt ceiling removal. The yank and Jonathan, there is something else in addition to your characterisation control freak, dishonesty and lies, born-to-rule mentality and others of the government leader, ministers, advisors, etc. Ah well, Roads Scholars and their fans obviously have little skill for higher office many people have said this for a while now, but too many of their audience did not listen?
While, of course, the lesser known and much more mysterious 'Rhodes' Scholars have more to do with higher office than you might realise Glenn: - Perhaps with a bike, a taxpayers expense account and a Fork Tongue you might aptly qualify? You labour luvvies aren't handling this too well are you.
Well you have a way to go. You will have at least 3 years, perhaps more if Tony calls a Double Dissolution. Yank can't stand Tony, but Tony is so far in front of Kevin, it's not real. Please remember this is all self inflicted. Please don't tell me that Tont Abbott is incompetent, it is too early to tell. He might be competent, he might not be, but he has to be given a go. They have slowed the boats at least. It is all down to the diligence and competence of the LNP. Bill:- Do you mean by secrecy and turning a blind eye, or did they allow that boat to land on Christmas Island on monday and forgot about 'till now?
Very competent I must say? Bill, I seem to remember the Lieberal fans throwing a non-stop six-year conniption since Get used to it. Sauce for the goose. Oh, and while everyone certainly has the right to their own opinion, your conclusions are counterfactual. And please, by all means, bring on a DD election. Oh please! I agree about Abbott but the problem extends well beyond him and the LNP. And is Bowen any better? Or Fitzgibbon? Clive Palmer perhaps? Finally someone has finally realised that the bulk of Australians a smart people when it comes to elections although the lefties wont like your comment.
Yes just look at the abbott government and you can see the flag fling sky high, they are so full of it. So Alfie, you don't think that your Tone has an over-inflated ego?
Doing his job for the country is he? Have you actually looked into this guy's background? Even his parents said that he always wanted to be PM. No problems there, eh? Bill Clinton always wanted to be President and has an inflated ego yet he was a very good President. Now that he is PM, he now finds he has to do some work for a change!! Tony and work don't go hand-in-hand very well?? I'm not sure whether you realise it, but your beloved LNP is no longer in opposition and Kevin Rudd is no longer in parliament.
The man in charge is your Tony and unfortunately, he is making a hash of everything he touches. Alfie, I think you missed the whole point of this article, it is intentionally oxymoronic to coin a word. You may need to reread it a few times to get the message to sink in. Haven't caught up yet Alf?
Rudd has left parliament. Good old Tone is in charge now. He, is finding the responsibility of being in power very difficult. He is finding that three word slogans dont work when you're the PM and you actually have to live up to the promises you made before the election. The dream ride he received from the media is over. He is not used to the scrutiny or being held to account. It has come as quite a shock, I'm sure.
Under funded Gonski, spying scandal, live export ban. None of these disasters are of their making, so we'll see how they go for the rest of their term. I'm sure they will make a few disasters of their own, of which the ABC will keep us well informed. Alfie, Abbott, his Parliamentary inner circle and also his alter ego, Peta Credlin, are already alienating Australians at the speed of light.
Not only that, they are alienating the broader members of both the Liberal and National parties in both Houses. This is a government that is rotting from the inside from day one! Dark clouds are coming from around the world that will affect our economy, the storm surge is approaching, but this incompetent Government doesn't seem to be more prepared than the average Philippine fisherman was as typhoon Haiyan inexorably advanced.
Don't just stop there Alpo, Tony has also already managed to alienate Indonesia and his foreign affairs sidekick has done the same with China. Tony Abbott talks big, but in the end, talk's cheap - never more evident than his 'Operation Sovereign Borders' - which enlisted a 3-Star General wow! How many times did Tony sneer 'Labor can't protect its borders'? Now, even with this you-beaut military assistance, the Coalition has failed miserably on border protection. Not only did a boat make it through undetected to Christmas Island, but those on board have been living on the island since Monday, without anyone being aware of them!!
Had they stayed 'put' instead of some venturing into the town, they would still be undiscovered. How safe ARE our borders, under this government? Alfie, now why am I not surprised that you failed to mention your fearless leader Tony Abbott and only focused your angst on Rudd. Yet you failed to mentioned how fitting Jonathan's comments are to our current Parliament and those of the past. Has it got worst with this current Parliament. Well it is hard to say seeing they are not telling us anything. Oh, I suppose that does make it worst doesn't it seeing we are just being told to trust them.
That usually waves the red flag for me, especially when they are deciding they have no need to inform us, the Australian public they are supposed to serve. I must admit it also tends to raise the red flag when I get told they can't inform me because of national interest. And I find it even more amazing when it seems the economic interest of international corporations become our national security interest. Going by that standard anything could be put under national interest by a government bent on secrecy.
In fact it seems it has not only become our national interest that we can't be told about. We now have our own spy agencies being sent out to hide the facts from us. Now I wonder what types of countries usually have their spy agencies doing those sorts of things? I will leave that to others to figure out. Displaying your usual comprehension deficit Alfie. A shared sense of self importance is not oxymoronic. If all politicians have a sense of self importance, it is indeed shared, without diminishing each individuals possession of it.
While Abbott, in talking up a false budgetary crises and talking down our triple A credit rating, was prepared to damage his own country well, our country given he was born overseas. Oh dear, Yank and Alfie, did you not read the article? I find it amazing that I completely agree with Green. I used to never agree with Radio National presenters. Your posts yank and Alfie, illustrate Green's sentiment exactly.
Things are going to get a lot tougher for Australia. We have a rapidly ageing population and a diminishing return that will cause severe problems in the future. I admit I have been part of the name callers, but have recently come to realise that it is to no avail. We all have political beliefs we have inherited or arrived at and act according to those beliefs, but it does not exclude rational thought and words regarding those problems.
Perhaps the first step is to introduce an independent speaker, elected by the parliament not by the government of the day. We tend to follow the Westminster system so perhaps we should follow their lead on this. Are numbers in your book an invitation to immoral behaviour. I would use the numbers to improve the country. Funnily enough, harry, back in January, Christopher Pyne called for an independent speaker who ''should take themselves out of the party room, and the deputy speaker should be from the opposite party''.
Once in power, though, the Coalition appointed a Coalition speaker still in the party room, and even went against precedent by appointing a Coalition deputy speaker. How power corrupts absolutely, eh? The process is as follows: MPs are given a list of candidates and place an x next to the candidate of their choice if a candidate receives more than 50 per cent of the votes, the question is put to the House that he or she takes the chair as Speaker if no candidate does so, the candidate with the fewest votes, and those with less than five per cent of the vote, are eliminated in addition, any candidate may withdraw within 10 minutes of the announcement of the result of a ballot MPs then vote again on the reduced slate of candidates and continue doing so until one candidate receives more than half the votes Politically impartial Speakers must be politically impartial.
Therefore, on election the new Speaker must resign from their political party and remain separate from political issues even in retirement. However, the Speaker will deal with their constituents' problems like a normal MP. Speakers and general elections Speakers still stand in general elections.
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They are generally unopposed by the major political parties, who will not field a candidate in the Speaker's constituency - this includes the original party they were a member of. During a general election, Speakers do not campaign on any political issues but simply stand as 'the Speaker seeking re-election'. I for one believe that no party member should be elected to the position of speaker, it should be some one of an independent nature with no bias either way and some one who has the actual countries best interests at heart.
As it now stands the speaker can shut down any person on the opposite side to them selves and make a mockery out of the parliament, They should also be able to be held to account for not squashing the mud slinging and name calling that go's against the Australian value's. She allows the LNP name calling to continue and is therefore unfit to be in the speakers chair. How can we the people get rid of some one like her. Bring back Peter Slipper. Totally unbiased. He hated both sides equally. Threw the treasurer out as well as the leader of the opposition.
When the prime minister wouldn't stop talking, he switched off her microphone. The UK Westminster system has a truly independent speaker who can't be dictated to by the majority party. So should our parliament. Bronhilda is totally biased. How can she then be neutral in her rulings? Dennis, totally agree with you on Peter Slipper. He took his job seriously and had no allegiances. Our Parliament likes to run with Westminster when it suits them, never is it more necessary than with the role of Speaker.
Question Time is becoming a farce since BB took over the chair. She is now breaking every rule in the book that she so frequently quoted from when in Opposition, with her disrupting and delaying tactics on a daily basis. Bishop was always going to be a disaster as speaker. Blind Freddy could see that. She has displayed a complete lack of impartiality and fair mindedness.
Parliament will be the big loser with her in the speakers chair.
The speaker's seat should be occupied by the Governor General. Then that person could actually do some thing useful. Thanks Whatif. The concept of ' If I have guessed your intended messages correctly, you may be right that the Speaker has more than one country's interests at heart probably the USA's and the UK's, not just Australia's , and that she can switch her bias either way. Maybe her only redeeming feature is that she can spell the third-person present form of 'go'; which of course is not an admired, or even necessary, skill these days.
Whatif 'As it now stands the speaker can shut down any person on the opposite side to them selves and make a mockery out of the parliament. He didn't need to. He just had to wait until all the Labor leaders had assassinated each other and then just stroll in and sit down in the PMs chair. He gained it by lying.
Murdoch tweeted he made this new government - no word from the LNP was tweeted to contradict that? None said subsequently? Andy M 'He didn't win power by coup or by assassination. Unfortunately, he focussed all his energies on getting there, he hasn't a clue now that he's arrived. Theoretically, so did Hitler and Mugabe.
However history shows they lied and manipulated their populations to get in. Oh wait. That's part of what the article is saying. Stop spouting rot yank. You think that the ALP hasn't picked speakers that are favourable to it when it is sitting on the Treasury benches? No party has a monopoly on poor or good behaviour here.
By all means castigate Slipper, reality is many got caught only 1 got charged. Abbott new broken promise, er um ah rule for all Australians joke. To say the yank, "your joke a mate",makes many of us try to guess,"Which universe you do inhabit". Bishop, is not just partisan in her role as Speaker.
She is blatant about her partisanship with not a care it seems from what I have seen about any criticism of it. If Slipper was the standard of being charged over misusing public funds, Parliament would be quite a bit smaller in numbers. It would be interesting to see if the coalition even had a majority.
Now Peter Slipper would have happy to have had the same chance to repay his alleged incorrect claims. But of course as we know the coalition did not give him a chance to so with their complaints to the Federal Police. Please Comrade Yank? Why comrade ghost; Comrade Hockey gave into the Socialists Nats Farmer Party,ongoing farmer dole,farmer protection against those awful foreign capitalists.
Your comrade Hockey bellows "we need foreign investment particularly from our brothers,communist China". Oh yeah. Someone from outside of politics who was paid to do the job properly. I agree. I think we need a speaker who is not a member of parliament, but perhaps a Federal Court Judge. Of course the problem with that is Parliamentarians are best at knowng Parlaimentary procedure.
But I'm sure a jusdge could bone up on that quickly enough. Question Times now a joke. The opposition leader and Tony Burke look completely at sea and have no idea as to how to counteract the obvious bias. Bronnie is not going to go away any time soon so here's an idea Just don't bother turning up. Hold a door stop to say why!!! Don't hold back and play by their rules. It don't work!!! I had to turn off yesterday as I could not stand listening to Pyne and Hockey any more.
This is not democracy!!! Yes indeed, Jonathan. There is a saying that "truth will out", and it certainly seems to be emerging at present. Using a government agency for business purposes is an inconvenient truth, and one that I sincerly hope is followed up and dealt with according to law.
I am totally shocked and outraged at the way our Federal - and State - public services have been and are continuing to be impressed into service for personal ambitions. Apart from the fact that our taxes are being misused, it is a shocking example to the young and ambitious growing up in our society. It will be a long time before Australians can hold their heads up again and be proud.
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I presume it would be in connection to the lawyer talking and stating as fact on my ABC about issues he should not be aware of. He should have known better, and the ex spook has no doubt "transgressed confidentially" imperatives associated with his job at the time. As for the example we are setting for the young and ambitious. Why should they, they know everything. Oaktree, Australians could look to the Scandinavian countries and note how well they manage their society. There is no gross wealth there nor abject poverty - we too could do without either.
The difference between the LNP and the ALP is that one party believes in a free for all and the other believes in social security. The rest is just relying on a wardrobe full of fitting truths. I also wouldn't tar all politicians with the same brush here - both sides have had representatives that didn't run simply because they saw election as their biggest payday in life. Malcolm Turnbull fits that bill.
The problem is the Craig Thompsons and Peter Slipper types and the members who have little to say because they aren't capable. Plenty of the latter on both sides - both past and present. Sadly this is a speech which could be attributed to too many. The saddest part is that it is not a reflection of all in Parliament, it does not reflect the speech of the victims of the party system. Those who have the ideals and altruism to want to serve the nation. Those who have been mislead into to the false belief of the integrity of our law makers. It is a true reflection of the disempowerment of our democracy.
Gilly, it is how rep dem works. A few manage to resist its pressures but the vast majority succumb. But a big test for all of them is unfolding before our eyes - as the effects of rising levels of CO2 become more visible and hit more Aussies, will there be a realization that reducing emissions fast is in the self interest of EVERYONE? What have you lot got against lovely plant food. It has given us nice warm temperatures increased crop yeilds increased crop areas so we can support the increased population in the years to come and you lot want to turn us back into an ice age.
Well sorry no thanks and now we have a government that will work to close down the Climate Clowns in the UN. No new Kyoto agreement for us. Thank you Mr Abbott. Never give up do you Evan? I suppose you realize that that lovely plant food has destabilized the climate to the point where global grain reserves are hovering on the brink. Even if you do not lose your house or your rellies in the next few years, the future is not looking good for the nutrition of your descendants. The world has never seen such crop production and with more CO2 and sunshine the more crops.
Well, a spike in this "lovely plant food" and subsequent "nice warm temperatures" did happen to cause the biggest mass extinction in the history of multicellular life on Earth. Maybe it's not all good Evan, In response I can only quote the words of Hercules Grytpype-Thynne of the Goons , who, when confronted by Neddie Seagoons more crazed antics quoth" You silly twisted boy you ". Still , they say ignorance is bliss No, no, no, no, NO! How can I be self-aggrandizing if I am simply a cog in a machine, delivering a service on behalf of my community? To what ends would I direct my ego, my consummate sense of overweening self-esteem?
How could my intrinsic value obvious as it may be to the majority of electors who put me here shine through, if not demonstrated by my refusal to accept the intellectual shackles of fact and truth and not pursue my narcissistic agenda? Or, failing that, simply hoover up a lot of money in the future by demonstrating my own inestimable worth is not linked to anything as banal as ideology, but is instead as flexible as the needs of those members of my electorate who can be mislead by popular media or strange whistles heard only by dog and bogans?
For- are WE not bogan? It can only be in the intemperate expression of my own self-worth, demonstrated through faux rage at the utter inflexibility of those with morals and ideals, that reflects my capacity to bridge the gaps across the community by standing firmly in any camp that has the money to pay for my vote in this, the most august of company. By virtue of the love I have for you, the electorate and of fast cars, fine wine and amoral women, of course , I demonstrate the importance of the system that elected me here by selling myself to the highest bidder.
Only in this way can I show you how much you are all worth. I don't care what the concentration of CO2 is because temperatures haven't risen in 16 years. Why are you in denial about what this means for your claims? Well it has a rise of about 0. The first lady is named Beth MacMann. This allows Mr. Speaking of shameless, that's the nickname of Beth's lawyer and former boyfriend, Boyce Baylor, who best articulates the book's opinions about trial by jury.
As he puts it, ''The most important rule of all: The truth has no place in a court of law. He can just sit there while lawyers fire spitballs at the accusers and make them out to be the real villains. Although ''No Way to Treat a First Lady'' nominally sets out to learn how the spittoon's trademark ''Revere'' wound up imprinted on the late president's forehead, Mr. Buckley's real satirical objectives are elsewhere. He means to caricature and tweak recognizable individuals while spinning a story that moves jauntily under its own steam.
The Trial of the Millennium may be ''off and running, like a garden slug galloping across a wide slate patio on a warm July day,'' but this clever, gleeful satire moves at a snappier pace. It sets a high comic standard to be met whenever Mr. Buckley gets around to his, what, 10th? View all New York Times newsletters. Dave Barry's books are much more numerous; his own recent take on Washington, ''Dave Barry Hits Below the Beltway,'' was an especially entertaining one.
But ''Tricky Business'' is only his second novel, after ''Big Trouble. After a bright start peppered with the kind of one-liners that Mr. Barry may be able to write in his sleep, ''Tricky Business'' runs into plot trouble that supersedes the joking. By the time a Glock and an AK make their appearances, and one character has his nose cut off while being tortured, you may not be laughing. Barry explains about such vessels, ''which means it's easy to prevent nosy outfits such as the United States government from finding out where it all comes from, and where it all goes. He endows this ship with a Sumptuous All You Can Eat Gourmet Buffet, where the contents of the chafing dishes are mysterious ''medallions of weasel, perhaps'' and a band that performs the ''traditional first number of the evening, a blues instrumental in the key of whoever started playing first.
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