Yes, the illustrations for Kevin Rudd's first children's book look innocent enough....
But while Prime Minister Kevin Rudd is fussing over his cat, outside two children are waving frantically to stop an ice-cream van, or perhaps a debt truck, from running them down :
Does Rudd notice? No he does not.
The book is not about those children, it's about Rudd's cat and dog's secret life as pro-Union Jack flag rescuers :
The Prime Minister's trusty four-footed patriot friends, of course, save the day. ''Quick Abby!'' said Jasper. ''You nab Chewy and I'll save the flag.''In a curious piece of politically pointed satire, Senator Barnaby Joyce writes his own dialogue for Rudd's dog and cat :
Jasper – Well Abby, if we have to plan for our future we have to build on what provides for us cats now. For instance where do we cats catch mice, rats, frogs and other cat food? Where do us cats hang out and get down and dirty with other cats?Abby – Generally derelict buildings!Jasper – Spot on Abby! So I have been building a whole new portfolio of future useless buildings, some buildings that aren’t even needed today, so our kittens will never be short of food again. I have put them in schoolyards so they can fill up with scraps of food and old mats and furniture – and mice!Abby – You crazy cat, you really are revolutionary. Your kittens will be so fat.
You sort of get where Senator Barnaby Joyce is coming from, and then think '.....What in all fuck? This is the shadow finance minister!' :
Jasper – I am a pretty major cat, Abby. You should see my plane and have a gander at my passport. I hang out with all the major talent and will fly anywhere in the world to do it and for absolutely any reason. No party is complete without me. You should pass by my alley and have a look at the photos.
Abby – But how did you pay for all this you crazy cat?Jasper – Simple! Just borrow the money. I have borrowed more money than any other cat in the history of this alley, and I have made sure that we have stimulated the growth of the local tip with the purchase of a whole range of crazy cat consumables such as flat screens and toys and other electronics so if the school halls burn down we can head back to the tip.Abby – You revolutionary cat! By the way what is the debt on the poor suckers account?Jasper – About $120 billion and rising fast, but this cat is not the one paying for that. There’s no easier, more guilt free way to spend money, than by spending some other cats money on other cats!
Always blame the cat.