Living in the UK for the past two years has brought to my attention the fact that no attention is given to Australia in the British news unless it is a story about a dangerous animal attack. There are no exceptions.
I have a feeling most other countries have the same attitude to news about Australia.
This weekend there is a very important and quite dramatic election going on in Australia so I feel it is my duty to find a way to inform those outside our country of what is going on.
Hence I have used my art to explain the battle of the two main parties in the federal election as… DANGEROUS ANIMAL ENCOUNTERS.
As I understand it, JULIA GILLARD, our current Prime Minister who stands for the Labor Party, can be represented metaphorically as a great white shark. She has recently had bad press for attacking a diver.
The diver in question was the Prime Minister before her, Kevin Rudd, who only defeated the previous longstanding Prime Minister, John Howard (a box jellyfish), three years ago. Rudd’s popularity had declined drastically over his first term due to several embarrassing mistakes and failures from the Labor Party.
This is why the party chose to overthrow him two months ago and his deputy, Julia Gillard, took the bait (she saw him paddling above her looking like a seal) and attacked. SHARK ATTACK!
This has given her serious image problems in Australia as the opposing conservative party (the Liberal Party) are using this act to portray her as a ruthless backstabber (ignoring the fact that sharks can’t hold knives… and that their leader similarly ousted his predecessor).
But was Julia acting out of malice and plotting or was she just acting on instinct, attacking where she saw necessary to achieve her ultimate aim, ie, victory for the Labor Party/eating a seal?
This is a bone of contention but one that can be solved when we realise that movies have perpetuated the MYTH that sharks enjoy attacking humans. In reality we know that sharks usually only attack humans by mistake or if they can tell the human has no way of winning an upcoming election.
The opposition leader is TONY ABBOTT.
I have depicted him here as a crocodile (in one of my most lifelike sculptures yet) because
a) he loves swimming and he loves grinning creepily
b) if you are swimming alone in a river he will often sneak up on you, drag you under the water in a death roll and then devour your lifeless corpse. Particularly if you are pro abortion. And not in a metaphorical way.
I must point out that I’m not an expert on the tiny details of his policies, having been away some time, but I am fairly sure that death rolls and lurking near swimmers are still high on his political agenda.
Also crocodiles are the closest living animal to dinosaurs and dinosaurs also thought climate change was ‘crap’, just like Abbott does.
Also part of Tony’s election campaign is to target refugees coming to Australia in boats. He wants to alert the Australian public to the horror of ‘boat people’ and promises to get rid of them. I believe he plans to do this by swimming up from below the boat and knocking it with his snout.
Julia has stated her belief in climate change but not acted effectively on it so far which is foolish of her, considering the immediate danger sharks face from global warming.
Click here to see Abbott’s refugee policy which begins at the 4:20 mark.
Also click here to see the prediction election analysts have made on the outcome of the vote on Saturday.
A final note on political bias
Whenever politics are discussed or reported, accusations of bias are flung around. So let me declare my bias straight away. It is true that I think sharks are way more awesome than crocodiles, particularly in terms of films about GIANT versions of these animals.
However I have tried to keep my analysis of shark and crocodile politics as objective as possible here.
If you feel that this has not been achieved than I urge you to seek out the advice of a marine biologist, especially one in a lab coat with glasses who likes to experiment in making GIANT sharks, and ask them about Julia Gillard’s failures to commit to Emmissions Trading Schemes or Tony Abbott’s lack of understanding about broadband technology.
NB: Crocodile photo taken by Heidi (from Michael Holley’s photo collection)