PHIL FOR PRESIDENT

Phillip Adams writes:

I’ve been asked by a number of readers to explain how the United States – and the world – gets lumbered with a president like George W. Bush.

As it happens, I’ve been asked by a number of readers to explain how world gets lumbered with a columnist like Phillip Adams.

So I will provide a detailed, scientific explanation. Bush is a statistical inevitability. His arrival at the White House was a consequence of simple division by simple people. Or, if you prefer, a process of elimination. First of all, you can eliminate half the population as the US is a long, long way from being ready to have a woman president – though some Democrats are talking up Hillary Clinton while Republicans counter with Condoleezza Rice.

I, too, will provide a detailed, scientific explanation. Adams is a statistical inevitability. His arrival at The Australian was a consequence of simple division by simple people. Or, if you prefer, a process of elimination. First of all, you can eliminate half the population as The Australian is a long, long way from being ready to have a senior, twice-per-week female columnist – though some paperboys are talking up Emma Tom, while subeditors counter with Janet Albrechtsen.

Then you can eliminate all the African-Americans …

Then you can eliminate all the Aboriginal Australians …

Despite Al Gore’s selection of a Jew as his running mate, US anti-Semitism precludes getting nominated as top banana.

Adams has railed against Imre Salusinszky, The Australian’s only Jewish columnist.

And unless Arnie Schwarzenegger can organise a change of the Constitution, you can also eliminate anyone and everyone who wasn’t born in the US.

And unless The Australian changes its name, you can also eliminate anyone and everyone who isn’t Australian.

See how fast we’re whittling down the figures? Getting closer to George Bush …

See how fast we’re whittling down the figures? Getting closer to Big Phil.

Homosexuals need not apply.

Phillip likes girls.

For the foreseeable future you can eliminate Muslims, Zoastrians, Hindus, Sikhs, Druids, followers of the Norse gods, or Buddhists.

The chances of a Hindu replacing Adams? Not great.

Atheists? No hope. In a nation where almost as many people go to church as shop at Wal-Mart, anyone who doesn’t claim to be born again would be out of the race long before Super Tuesday, probably before New Hampshire. Even candidates admitting agnosticism would have to hit the road.

As would a born-again Christian applying for a columnist role at The Australian.

Indeed, it’s hard to see them backing any candidate with a greater disability than dyslexia.

Phil’s got that covered; he struggles profoundly with numbers and the alphabet.

Low intelligence? Hardly an impediment as, once again, the incumbent demonstrates. Indeed, intellectual credentials would almost certainly be politically fatal … Being very intelligent – indeed being very anything – rules you out.

Phillip isn’t very intelligent.

This brings us back to physical appearance in the land of Narcissus. You can pretty well eliminate anyone who isn’t regarded as physically attractive. Indeed, it helps to have had a prior career in Hollywood.

Phillip was once a movie producer.

And you can pretty well eliminate anyone who isn’t stinking rich. It’s not entirely inaccurate to suggest that, by and large, presidential elections have given voters a choice of millionaires.

Phillip’s art collection is worth $20 million.

So there you have it. Take the American population. Divide in half. Subtract large numbers of people in various categories and, lo and behold, you’ve got George Dubya. Think of it. Had he been female, gay, black, Jewish, an immigrant, an agnostic or overly endowed with intelligence, he’d still be what he was. A political mediocrity in Texas, being baled out of business failures by his father’s wealthy friends. Back in the Governor’s mansion, instead of being able to wage war all over the planet, George would be limited to setting records for the confirmation of death sentences – hundreds of them. If only he had been born in Australia, the world would be safe.

So there you have it. Take the Australian population. Divide in half. Subtract large numbers of people in various categories and, lo and behold, you’ve got Phil the Waddler. Think of it. Had he been female, gay, black, Jewish, an immigrant, an agnostic or overly endowed with intelligence, he’d still be what he was. A broadcasting mediocrity in Sydney, being subsidised by the nation’s extorted taxpayers. Back in the Radio National mansion, instead of being able to wage war on the printed word, Phillip would be limited to setting records for boring listeners to death – hundreds of them. If only he had been born infertile, the world would be safe.

Posted by Tim B. on 02/26/2005 at 01:10 AM
    1. Just so people don’t get confused:

      The constitution of the State of Texas does not give the governor 1) the power to prevent trials on capital charges, 2) the power to prevent any state prosecutors from seeking the death penalty, 3) the power to stop a jury from imposing a sentence of death, 4) the power to compel a judge to overturn such a sentence, 5) the power to compel the state board of pardons and paroles to commute a death sentence, or 6) any power to commute a death sentence on his own.

      In short, as Texas governor, Bush had no more power to stop executions in Texas than Mark Latham, Al Gore, John Kerry, or Phillip Adams.

      Posted by Warmongering Lunatic on 02/26 at 03:33 AM • permalink

 

    1. “the land of Narcissus”

      Wasn’t ancient Greece the land of Narcissus?  Or am I missing something?

      “Being very intelligent – indeed being very anything – rules you out.”

      Really?  I can think of some Presidents who were indisputably intelligent.  Clinton was a sleazy crook and a liar, but nobody ever questioned his intelligence.  Same with Kennedy.  And LB Johnson made a bunch of extremely stupid mistakes, but he was also intelligent.  George Bush Sr was intelligent too.

      “wage war all over the planet”

      How many wars has he waged in Europe, Latin America, Asia or Africa?  So far as I’m aware, he has only waged two, in the Middle East, against thoroughly odious regimes, in cooperation with dozens of other countries.  Maybe I missed his Canadian invasion of ‘02 though.

      Honestly, some columnists are almost too easy as targets.

      Posted by PJ on 02/26 at 04:05 AM • permalink

 

    1. I’ve been asked by a number of readers to explain how the United States – and the world – gets lumbered with a president like George W. Bush.

      That’s easy: the Democrats nominated two jackasses to run against him: Al Gore and John Kerry. A lot of people voted for Bush because the alternative was worse.

      Posted by rosignol on 02/26 at 04:37 AM • permalink

 

    1. Just the laugh I needed after a day at work!

      Posted by Toosmoky on 02/26 at 04:53 AM • permalink

 

    1. But for the foreseeable future you can eliminate Muslims, Zoastrians, Hindus, Sikhs, Druids, followers of the Norse gods, or Buddhists.

      I don’t see how that differs from any other western nation. The A.L.P. didn’t choose a Viet name to represent the people of Werriwa. Though Jean-Marie Le Pen may well worship the Norse gods.

      Posted by monaro on 02/26 at 05:38 AM • permalink

 

    1. A political mediocrity in Texas, being baled out of business failures by his father’s wealthy friends. Back in the Governor’s mansion, instead of being able to wage war all over the planet, George would be limited to setting records for the confirmation of death sentences – hundreds of them. If only he had been born in Australia, the world would be safe.
      Ted Rall would love this entry in his lefty vitriol roundup, I’m sure. That’s if he isn’t completely buried under them already.
      Phil should have stayed in the fantasy worlds of advertising & films. He belongs there.

      Posted by blogstrop on 02/26 at 06:59 AM • permalink

 

    1. But Philip sounds so patrician, so intellectual, so mmmm gay. You mean to tell me he’s nothing but a dated old dunny lane art collector?
      I’m shattered.

      Posted by gubbaboy on 02/26 at 07:36 AM • permalink

 

    1. “Indeed, it’s hard to see them backing any candidate with a greater disability than dyslexia”

      Let’s see, Franklin Roosevelt was crippled by polio.  John Kennedy had a bad back (he also had Addison’s disease but was able to keep it secret).  Bill Clinton was/is a congential liar.  So, yes, we Americans are totally against the disabled.

      Posted by edjoyce on 02/26 at 08:51 AM • permalink

 

    1. A great reductio ad adsurdum, as far as I can see it: I still don’t get Phillip’s logic. Could it be absurd? “Bigotry always elects Presidents, except when my candidate wins”? “Only people who vote for losers are not bigots, except when my candidate wins”? “Ex post facto explanation proves ‘inevitability’”? “Whoever wins elections wins elections”? “I don’t like Bush”? “I am myself”? “I’m nutty, see my nuts”? What?

      Posted by J. Peden on 02/26 at 09:03 AM • permalink

 

    1. Despite Al Gore’s selection of a Jew as his running mate, US anti-Semitism precludes getting nominated as top banana.

      Ummm, isn’t the American Right controled by the Joooos?  Phil needs to re-read his Moonbat Manual.

      Unless the Joooos are anti-sementic…

      Posted by Mr. Blue on 02/26 at 09:24 AM • permalink

 

    1. Well, I think Phil is rather a dear. He should hire himself out as a pet. I see him as a belligerent bulldog, requiring lots of soothing pats to stop him growling and barking and biting the pavement.

      Posted by robf on 02/26 at 09:53 AM • permalink

 

    1. Too bad Lenny Lower isn’t around today. Although, I doubt even he could offer a grander fisking than has just been rendered.
      Beautiful!

      Posted by Abu Qa’Qa on 02/26 at 10:40 AM • permalink

 

    1. The Left will never ever understand guys like Bush jr and Howard or anyone who voted for them. It throws their whole worldview upside down leaving them no other option than childish name calling. The logical end to this worldview is to make common cause with the enemies of humanity (who happen to be very illiberal, but nevermind that.) I was in Oz last september, in the runup to the elections there. Literally everyone we met wanted to talk politics. Regular type folks (cabbies, hotel staff, barkeeps, etc.) were uniformly pro-American and pro-Howard and Bush. We took a few guided tours, which are hosted by struggling actors and other arsty types, and of course, those types were adamantly anti. One gal in particular hosting our pub tour (not many art galleries on our itinerary;) couldn’t stand Bush, or Howard, and was positive they would both be bounced from office at the earliest convenience. I told her Howard would win, Bush would win, and she thought I was nuts. She was also flabbergasted that there was a human soul on this planet who did not think Bill Clinton was god himself. The reasons both men won are quite simple; plainspoken-ness, courage of convictions and the ability to relate to ordinary folks. The left hates these qualities.

      Posted by Wass on 02/26 at 11:10 AM • permalink

 

    1. Even if it were true that Bush was a failure in his earlier life, that by no means precludes him from being a successful president.  Look at Harry Truman, who was always taunted as a failed haberdasher.  Look at US Grant, who was working at his father-in-law’s store after failing at everything else.  True, he was not a great president, but he deserves points for winning the civil war.  He also made miserable grades at West Point, just as Bush (and Al Gore) did at Yale.

      Posted by miriams ideas on 02/26 at 11:21 AM • permalink

 

    1. Oh my God, I made a mistake.  Al Gore got miserable grades at Harvard. mUCH HARDER TO DO, NO DOUBT.

      Posted by miriams ideas on 02/26 at 11:25 AM • permalink

 

    1. Of course Phil isn’t an elitist for having a $20 million art collection.  Just like Saddam needed all those extra weekend getaway bungalows.

      That’s in Australian dollars, right?  So basically, if we we convert the currency, he’s got a wall full of Franklin Mint commemorative painted dinner plates (“Ooh!  Spock came!”)?  If not, how many pictures of koalas playing poker can one man need?

      Posted by richard mcenroe on 02/26 at 12:41 PM • permalink

 

    1. I hope Phil is stocked up on “Ward Churchills” – the next President of these United States.

      Posted by J. Peden on 02/26 at 01:18 PM • permalink

 

    1. His arrival at the White House was a consequence of simple division by simple people.

      Like I said back in November: If the moonbats were not so hateful, Bush’s victory wouldn’t be so sweet.

      Posted by jorgen on 02/26 at 01:18 PM • permalink

 

    1. His arrival at the White House was a consequence of simple division by simple people.

      Too stupid to follow deception, is his meaning.  And so not taken in, though that’s left alone in favor of the stupidity.

      Posted by rhhardin on 02/26 at 03:56 PM • permalink

 

    1. A political mediocrity in Texas…

      Perhaps Phil doesn’t know that, before Governor Bush, the state of Texas was facing the prospect of enacting a personal state income tax due to huge deficits in the budget under Ann Richards.  Not only was said tax not enacted, Bush managed to eliminate the state sales tax on many items, including the creation of “sales tax holidays”.  He managed to heal the budget despite a Democrat congress.  Also note that the Texas governor is one of the weakest governorships in the US; its biggest power is in appointments.  I would say he did a remarkable job, which is why I voted for him twice for governor and twice for president.

      But, I am simple-minded.  Better alert the University of Texas so that they may rescind my medical degree!

      Posted by hookemhorns on 02/26 at 04:43 PM • permalink

 

    1. Phatso Phil art lover/olive wrangler/radio-clown should stand in politics; he is so well qualified, he has all the necessary attributes in abundance!

      Posted by rog2 on 02/26 at 05:26 PM • permalink

 

    1. I’ve been asked by a number of readers to explain how the United States – and the world – gets lumbered with a president like George W. Bush.

      As I wrote back to his sterling publication: because you’re very very lucky…

      Posted by richard mcenroe on 02/26 at 09:59 PM • permalink

 

    1. When i read this article yesterday, I spent some time wondering why it is that the OZ bothers to keep him on.  I mean, the shareholders aren’t really getting much for their money, are they (what would a columnist for the Oz get anyway?)? or is it for entertainment purposes?  It certainly provides much mirth and merriment on blogs such as this.
      If they are seeking someone from the left for reasons of ‘balance’, why not give phat phil the heave ho and get someone relatively rational, I am sure there are some.  perhaps we could instigate a recruitment program for the Oz, free of charge!  Any suggestions?

      Posted by entropy on 02/26 at 10:42 PM • permalink

 

    1. Argh, Tim! It’s hard enough being infertile – don’t make us endure the company of Phillip Adams in addition!

      I wish he’d give the actual NUMBER of the “number of readers” – I’m guessing it consists of himself and maybe a spouse or a few kids who are humouring the old man. I mean, can anyone really picture the desperate letter-writers: “Phillip, YOU ALONE can explain this travesty! Please, impart your wisdom!” Don’t see it happening, myself.

      Posted by Sonetka on 02/27 at 02:26 AM • permalink

 

    1. ‘A political mediocrity in Texas’?

      I’m sure that Phil got all squirmily smug with that bit of snark. But shouldn’t a professional writer have at least minumum standards for accuracy?

      Except for a failed Congressional campaign in his twenties, GW’s political ascendancy in Texas was stunning. He first ran for statewide office in 1992, against popular incumbent and media fave Ann Richards. In a predominantly Democrat state, he beat her with 53% of the vote. He transformed the Texas political landscape, and in 1998 was re-elected in a landslide. He immediately began running for president.

      A better description of GW’s poltical career would be ‘meteoric’ or ‘transformative’. And the pathetically unworldly Phil might like to know that Texas has a larger population and economy than Australia.

      Posted by lyle on 02/27 at 05:28 AM • permalink

 

    1. I had a scientific thoery on Philip Adams as well. It went something like, “If you pile enough shit in a pond, some of it breaks the surface”.
      Or something.

      Posted by FusterCluck on 02/27 at 05:40 AM • permalink

 

    1. Sonetka, I get the idea that Adams sees himself as a latter-day Socrates.  “Tell us, dear teacher!’’ his students cry (in his imagination), “what is the meaning of…[fill in the blank here]?’’ And he tells them, at length.

      The difficulty of this setup is that to be even an ersatz Socrates you have to have an admiring Plato scribbling down every word you say.  Lacking a Plato, Adams has to invent one.  Or just feed himself his own straight lines.

      Posted by Sonetka’s Mom on 02/27 at 01:40 PM • permalink

 

    1. Actually, Phat Phil couldn’t be a Socrates because he doesn’t use the Socratic Method.  Socrates believed that his students had the knowledge, they just didn’t realize it.  So he made them think by asking questions.  Thus, law school.

      Phil thinks his students know nothing and require filling like jugs of his infinite knowledge, thus he pontificates.  At length.  Ad nauseam.

      Alas for Phat Phil’s purported students, as Tim’s fisking has shown, it isn’t what Phil knows that gets him in trouble, it’s what he knows that just isn’t true.

      Posted by JorgXMcKie on 02/27 at 04:13 PM • permalink

 

    1. Didn’t Art Buchwald make that same joke in 1976?

      Posted by John Nowak on 02/27 at 04:34 PM • permalink

 

    1. Thanks, Tim, for giving the US readers a sly look at Our Adamski.  Hilarious.  Phil’s away with the fairies again. Hardly drew in a breath of incredulous shock after years of insulting and bagging the ‘incompetent’ John Howard and Bush ‘neocons’, and getting it all wrong on Iraqs I and II, and long before that, on Communism and Whitlamism, and … and… Phil is the True Believer – in his own infallibility.  He has to be, he’s also a proud atheist…

      Posted by Barrie on 02/27 at 07:23 PM • permalink

 

    1. How does the world get lumbered with a columnist/commentator like Adams? The answer is…it doesn’t! Not the real world anyway. Only the utopian taxpayer funded Neverland of the ABC does. I don’t know what the HELL The Australian is thinking!
      And as for Adams being a “columnist”…I’d say he’s more of an evangelist. He’s at least as self-righteous as those he attacks.
      It’s ironic that Adams’ kind of Marxism can only ever be the result of the worst of Western decadence. If he ever got the Marxist revolution he pretends to champion, his fat, flabby head would be among the first on a pike!!!

      Posted by Brian on 02/27 at 09:33 PM • permalink

 

    1. I don’t agree that Phil’s head would be on a pike in a Marxist revolution.  He would suck up to his new masters big time.  He’s a useful idiot.
      Someone like Zell Miller wouldn’t live past sundown, however.

      Posted by miriams ideas on 02/27 at 10:11 PM • permalink

 

    1. I wrote Phillip who responded that his article is “satire” and called me slow-witted. I replied with a definition of satire, and explained how his article was in no way satiric, ironic, or witty. I also mentioned that Tim Blair gave me the url to the article.

      Here is Phillip Adams’ reply to me:
      “Tim Blair is a total fuckwit – reading the poor lad causes brain damage….The response to the column – and I’ve written countless thousands over the last fifty years of what must be the longest-running career of any Australian columnist – attracted lots of predictably spluttering outrage from humourless conservatives and tonnes of delighted emails from my side of politics…..in other words, business as usual….in future, to help the slow-witted reader, I’ll mark columns para by paragraph to indicate whether my words are satirical, ironic, whimsical, angry, serious or combinations thereof. Cheers…”

      There it is. He attacks the person and falls back on his “credentials” as an argument. Tim has this guy pegged.

      Posted by bambino on 02/28 at 09:18 AM • permalink

 

  1. The response to the column … attracted lots of predictably spluttering outrage from humourless conservatives and tonnes of delighted emails from my side of politics…..in other words, business as usual

    Nevermind the nonsensical construction “the response to the column attracted…”, I guess that’s an implicit admission that his columns are predictable as hell.

    Posted by PW on 03/01 at 09:26 AM • permalink