By ERWIN CHLANDA
Headline: CLP increases commitment to iconic Outback Way.
Isn’t it fantastic? The Country Liberal Party, barely clinging to life with a pathetic two seats in the Legislative Assembly, “will deliver another $160 million to seal and widen priority sections of the iconic Outback Way”. What admirable generosity.
But hold on, the smaller print actually says the money will come from the Coalition Government. That would be the coalition government in Canberra, right?
That’s what you call a long bow: The CLP is of course not part of the Coalition Government but Senator Scullion (pictured below) sits with the Nationals in the Senate and they are.
There is the Australian Government Coat of Arms at the head of the media handout from Senator Nigel Scullion with the message, in the largest type, being a pat on the back for the party of which he is the president.
So in what way is the CLP increasing its commitment to the east-west highway? Thinking about it a great deal more? Having a yarn over a beer? Or using this as a back door way to promote two of its candidates?
This release, coming from Senator Scullion’s office, which is financed by the Senate, quotes himself, as well as “Country Liberals Candidate for Lingiari” Jacinta Price and “Joshua Burgoyne, Country Liberals Senate Candidate”.
Between inverted commas, the statements by all three are the kind of mindless bumph the public is served up day after day by political minders.
Joshua who? Ah, that’s right, he is the SECOND Senate candidate of the CLP, with zero chance of being elected.
But, hey, this is a nifty way of giving exposure to a new CLP identity, on Senate letterhead distributed to dozens of media.
According to Commonwealth Coat of Arms information and guidelines “Senators and Federal Members of Parliament may use the Arms in the course of their duties as Parliamentarians”.
What does producing propaganda for the NT-based CLP, and disseminating the profound views of Ms Price and Mr Burgoyne about the Outback Way, have to do with Senator Scullion’s “duties as a Parliamentarian”?
It remains to be explained.
By ERWIN CHLANDA