Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Now you know how it feels to be a woman, Kevin (SA edition)

This is wrong on so many levels I don't know where to start.

Like his immediate and indeed only superior (structural, that is, not moral necessarily) the Premier, Mike Rann, the Treasurer and Deputy Premier Kevin Foley was assaulted over the weekend by someone he had clearly made unhappy. This happened on the street at 3 am on Sunday morning, after Foley had, by this account, been doing the rounds of the bars and clubs.

Foley is single and 50. He must have been as sad a sight in some of those clubs as poor old Sam Newman, who may be even older than that but is at least better looking. (Those of you who have never seen any photos or footage of Foley will have to trust me on this one.)

Foley was due to take over as Acting Premier yesterday morning, while Rann ran away on one of his many international trips presumably to do one of his many international deals. Rann has barely been sighted since the state election in March and the seedy and seemingly interminable scandal that led up to it.

Now, one is resigned to being ruled by people whose capacity for good judgment would fit into their left ear and leave room over for a cotton bud; it happens all the time. If the Treasurer and Deputy Premier, whose ambition to be Premier is very well known, wants to be trying to crack onto women young enough to be his daughters in clubs, and turning up in pizza bars on Adelaide streets with 'unknown' women after nights on the town with millionaire property developers, then that is, of course, his business. It's a free country.

But the sentence that keeps leaping out at me from that linked report is this one:

Ministers arriving for cabinet yesterday said Mr Foley was entitled to walk on a city street at any hour without being assaulted.

Quite. Yes. Yes he is. And I'm sure none of those Ministers would even dream of saying Well, clubbing and pissed on the streets in the small hours, he was just asking for it. I wonder if he was scantily clad.

Foley was quoted in yesterday's paper-edition Advertiser as saying 'What it does clearly show to me is the risk I now take as a senior politician out in public.'

Leaving aside the question of whether Foley was incapable of taking this message in when Mike Rann was attacked with a rolled-up wine magazine (I love that Adelaide touch, I just love it to death) way back in the mists of time and it's only now finally sunk in, I'm guessing that most of the women of Adelaide -- not only those who like to go out and have a good time at night, but those who are old and feeble enough to be an easy target for the horrible little shits who lurk around ATMs waiting for an easy handbag, and all of us in between -- read that sentence and thought Pfft, Kevin, welcome to my world.

17 comments:

phillhunt said...

Yes, people should be entitled to walk in the street without being assaulted; nobody is arguing that, but is it too much to ask for some dignity from our senior political leaders?

And yes, Sam Newman was the first thought I had when I heard of this Sunday.

I suspect there's much more to be told about this sordid little story.

Anonymous said...

"he was just asking for it"

Is it a continuum thing? Walking the streets around clubs at 3.00am is putting yourself in a position where violence is more likely to happen to you. If you're drunk or slightly so, if you're dressed unconventionally, not the usual age for club-going etc all make trouble more likely. Eventually, if there are enough factors, one might say 'well he was asking for it.'

Not that it should have happened, but that in several ways he put himself in a risky position. Same with girls, in a dark street, slightly drunk, scantily clad ....

via collins said...

That is indeed a quietly disturbing read.

"He was behaving perfectly normal. In fact, women were coming up introducing themselves to him."

How many crap US straight to video films does a person have to watch to dream up scenarios like that?

How many people does his offsider actually think will swallow bilge like that?

Siighhhhhhh....

Fyodor said...

A bit of rapsberry jam, but sounds like a tops night out.

Honestly, the bloke takes a tap to the face and it's a feckin' catastrophe. And he calls himself a member of the Right. Pfft. Adelaide Right, maybe.

fxh said...

Pissed, 50 year old in suit mistakes Adelaide at 3am for vibrant city, pokes nose in where not wanted, gets nose tapped.

Askin' for it I say.

If it was NSW he'd be promoted to Premier, if it was Melbourne he might have got shot.

David Irving (no relation) said...

I know this is mean-spirited, and I fell slightly ashamed of myself for thinking it, but really: it couldn't have happened to a nicer bloke.

Probably some pissed and seriously pissed-off public sector union member spotted and just couldn't let the opportunity go past ...

David Irving (no relation) said...

I should add, by the way, that I occasionally wander around in or near Hindley Street at the same time of the day, in a similar state, looking for a yiros after a hard night listening to music and drinking. (I'm an overweight 60-year-old bloke, so like Kevin only older and not as obnoxious.)

I don't think I've ever even seen a fight, let alone been involved in one. Probably helps if you're not trying to pick up women younger than your own children ...

phillhunt said...

"I know this is mean-spirited, and I fell slightly ashamed of myself for thinking it, but really: it couldn't have happened to a nicer bloke."

That was my next thought about a second after the Sam Newman analogy.

He's lucky he didn't run into a public service leaving do...

I don't think though, that Foley's continuing expression of faux innocence and bewilderment is doing his standing too many favours.

As for trotting out a rich drinking buddy to plead your case; well the general populace is going to love that now aren't they...

ThirdCat said...

Not strictly on topic, but not strictly off either:

Can we please have Jay Weatherill now rather than later?

Mindy said...

"Walking the streets around clubs at 3.00am is putting yourself in a position where violence is more likely to happen to you."

You speak as if this is an accepted and acceptable thing that nothing can be done about. That is not true. Politicians whether scantily clad and drunk or not should be able to wander freely. As should women. It is the thugs that carry out the muggings who are in the wrong here, not the people innocently wandering.

Kerryn Goldsworthy said...

Damn you, Fyodor, you made me laugh like a drain while sitting by myself in a public place. (Asking for it, no doubt.)

FXH, Adelaide-trashing will not be tolerated on this blog, so. Good point about Melbourne and Sydney, though.

ThirdCat, unfortunately Jay Weatherill is on the nose with much of the rest of the party, simply for being Left but I think also partly because of an ill-advised tilt at the leadership just after the election. Put it this way, I don't think he's got a chance until something happens to remove Tom Koutsantonis (sp?)

Mindy, quite.

DI(nr): from a reliable source, the word is, or do I mean the words are*, cherchez la femme. La femme and her derrière, apparently. It just gets worse and worse.

* Or indeed les mots sont.

BwcaBrownie said...

great post thank you KG, and applauding FXH remark.
NO aspirational politician should be roaming alone in the early hours. ever. eedjit.

David Irving (no relation) said...

Sorry, PC, that's gone straight over my head. Mostly because the closest I've ever got to speaking French is listening to my mate Ian's collection of Jacques Brel songs. (He's kind enough to translate for me.)

I'm guessing Our Kev pinched some young woman's arse and the bloke who was with her took exception.

Anthony said...

The last time I was in Adelaide (mid-1996) there was, late at night, a drive-by shooting in Hindley St - and, surprise, surprise, no one was hurt.

Kerryn Goldsworthy said...

Cherchez la femme = 'Look for the woman [in the case].'

David Irving (no relation) said...

[sigh] It's really all about viewing women as possessions, isn't it? (Both Our Kev's smack in the mouth and the uneasiness women rightly feel about being out alone at night.)

David Irving (no relation) said...

Oh, I'm sorry for the derail, but thanks for the sidebar pointer to the deconstruction of "Gimme Shelter". Knowing how it was done doesn't reduce the wonder a bit.