Benvenuti a Roma

The ‘progressives’ were apoplectic when they heard that Australia’s most qualified diplomat, Alexander Downer, was off to London to replace Mike Rann.

Downer has forgotten more about diplomacy and foreign affairs than most DFAT staff have ever learned. He is orders of magnitude more qualified to be our High Commissioner in London than Rann, Rudd and Carr combined.

Yet Rann hadn’t been booted out of London. He was given a reward – a post far, far more attractive than London. One which has a significantly lower Ministerial workload and which had long been the centre of the world.

Yes, Rome. The greatest city on Earth. In one of the great countries. Rann’s wife is Italian to boot.

Rann will probably get to serve a full three years in Rome. Great work if you can get it.

Ciao bella Roma.

About Samuel J

Samuel J has an economics background and is a part-time consultant
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52 Responses to Benvenuti a Roma

  1. Stephen of Glasshouse

    A hardship posting. FMD

  2. Andrew

    Hopefully when he gets there they tell him he’s fired and him and his wife can both go try and get a job in the Italian job market. (I hear it’s improving.)

  3. Chris M

    Why should Rann get this – he impoverished a state and brought financial hardship to many Australians.

  4. Habib

    WTF??? I’d be dissapointed in this government if I didn’t have such low expectations.

  5. Eyrie

    Chris M : because he’s part of the Australian nomenklatura. They all look after each other. Look at Fatty O’Barrel giving Bligh’s husband a well paying gig after Newman got rid of him.
    All the government/opposition thing is a charade to fool the marks. Assume they are all criminals looting the public and you won’t be far wrong. Now and again they throw 0ne of the herd to the lions to protect the rest. Like Thommo. But let’s see what they actually do to him.

  6. Rabz

    Rann’s wife is Italian to boot.

    So she’s still with that lobotomised sleaze, is she?

    Thought she might have flounced off after that whole Michelle Chunderland enraged hubby with rolled up newspaper imbroglio.

    You can never remove some snouts from the trough, it seems.

  7. David

    Don’t you get it lads and lasses. It’s just a big effin Club and it doesn’t matter which side of “the House” you sat on. Once finished screwing the voters in Parliament you get a cushy job somewhere overseas.

    As for Rome being “the greatest city on earth” I beg to disagree. Many years ago I read a translation of the diary of a French knight on his way to the First Crusade and he described Rome as a dirty, smelling ruin. I found when I visited it in the late 90′s it hadn’t changed since his visit in the 11th Century.

    Provincial Italy a different story. Great food, good wine, friendly people.

  8. JC

    Next up, Abbott offer the slapper the NYC consulate posting. Watch.

    These guys are dickheads.

  9. Baldrick

    and you would reward a Labor politician because ….

  10. C.L.

    First Natasha State-Despoiler, now this.

    FM.

  11. H B Bear

    Mike Rann is South Australia personified.

  12. Baldrick, see Eyries post:
    Chris M : because he’s part of the Australian nomenklatura.
    It’s as simple as that.

  13. David

    Mike Rann is South Australia personified

    That’s about the unkindest thing you could say about someone – maybe true but still unkind. Even worse than being identified as Taswegian. At least in Tassie it’s all in the [one] family.

  14. JC

    Rome is actually a plum job for a friend of the party.

    Rann’s on the right in the pic?

  15. H B Bear

    Anyone know how Amanda Vanstone’s Italian lessons ended up? That was taxpayer money well spent. I wonder what her qualifications were? A love of pizza?

    This is a pox on both their houses.

  16. Gab

    WTF is wrong with this government. I’m sick of their appeasements and it isn’t winning them any votes either.

    Grow some balls, LNP.

  17. C.L.

    What does it say about Abbott that he would reward Rann? That’s Rann on the right.

  18. C.L.

    JC – SNAP-O-RAMA!

    That’s spooky.

  19. JC

    CL
    It’s an iconic pic for lots of reasons.

  20. Chris

    Mike Rann deserves nothing, the man single handily screwed SA then got kicked out by the kid in the SDA was given a lifetime pension from SA parliament, a climate change position from Gillard ($300k? was that for providing Mcsporran as a speaker in residence), special money from SA to provide office & security (around $100K) now he moves from London to Rome. What the heck did he learn sitting under Don Dunstan’s desk as a young press secretary?

  21. Wozzup

    Abbott really is too bloody soft.

  22. JC

    We always said, don’t be magnanimous in victory and to always kick them even when they’re down. What a bunch of useless asshats.

  23. Fleeced

    I am disgusted by this.

    And you’re right about him not winning any support from leftards for appeasements like this… they already whined about Rann being dumped for Downer – when it turns out he was promoted (or at worst, moved sideways).

    Still, what does it matter in the end, hey? Whether it’s Rann or Vanstone or whoever – it’s all just dodgy bullshit anyway.

    Seems a waste though, politically speaking… maybe he just wants to keep a couple of these postings in reserve for if/when he really needs them. Much harder to dump one of your own who can then come back and cause you real trouble…

  24. Leigh Lowe

    Yes, Rome. The greatest city on Earth. In one of the great countries. Rann’s wife is Italian to boot.

    I guess he just has to ask himself one question.
    What hurts more?
    A rolled up copy of the Adelaide Advertiser or Il Globo Roma?

  25. Eddystone

    H B Bear

    #1195667, posted on February 19, 2014 at 8:39 pm

    Mike Rann is South Australia personified.

    No.
    Get fucked.
    He’s hated in SA.
    You might as well say Rudd is Queensland personified.

  26. Infidel Tiger

    Abbott a leftist softcock you say?

    Get with the programme. I’ve been telling you this for years.

  27. Disillusioned

    You might as well say Rudd is Queensland personified

    You mean he isn’t?

  28. CR

    Didn’t Shortarse meet Rann in London recently on his jaunt?
    What was that all about?

  29. Leigh Lowe

    Didn’t Shortarse meet Rann in London recently on his jaunt?
    What was that all about?

    Tips and techniques for dealing with jealous husbands perhaps?

  30. sabrina

    How much are these guys paid? And while on these posts, do they still keep all parliamentary financial benefits they accrued?

  31. CatAttack

    The appointment of Leftards garners absolutely no browny points whatsoever with the Left. They hate Abbott with a passion that.beggers belief. They don’t believe in fairness. This is not a zero sum game. After being demonised for years there is nothing that Abbott can do to garner respect or even a mild grudging acknowledgement from the Left. They just don’t work like that. Reasonable people see there opponents in shades of gray. Abbott is evil personified to Leftards. Don’t bother trying to appease them Tony.

  32. Crossie

    Seems a waste though, politically speaking… maybe he just wants to keep a couple of these postings in reserve for if/when he really needs them. Much harder to dump one of your own who can then come back and cause you real trouble…

    Yes, a total waste. Is Tony indicating that he has nobody on the conservative side who deserves a reward?

    He should have done a clean sweep of all embassies and put his people in place. I don’t trust any Lefties to do the right thing by Australia.

  33. gabrianga

    Great opportunity for Rann and the newish Pope to discuss the sharing of the wealth (other people’s of course)

    Rann could once again seek intellectual guidance from our good friend 457 McTernan and all would be cosy .

  34. Tintarella di Luna

    Ahhh la citta eterna! Such a schifoso — hope he doesn’t foul up the joint.

  35. Oh come on

    What does it say about Abbott that he would reward Rann?

    I don’t think that Abbott intended to reward Rann. I suspect he considered sending Rann to Rome would be seen as a sideways move, and he did this to placate the opposition. Who of course are now shrieking blue murder anyway.

    Abbott is an astute politician, but he often shows he has a very limited insight into the mindset of the parties that oppose him. He hasn’t figured out that being all even-handed and fair with leftist appointments, as opposed to ruthlessly dumping those appointees and parachuting his favoured replacements, is going to earn him the same response from them anyway. And some of his magnanimous gestures, providing high-paying work to those who despise him and whatever it is they consider is his ideology, is just extreme naivety. Does he really think they’re going to thank him? They wouldn’t *ahem* relieve themselves on him if he was on fire, even after he’s appointed them to some generously salaried, tax free lurk with a hefty expense budget in one of the great cities in the world.

    I actually don’t think Abbott does this because he’s a jellyback. I think he does it because he’s a genuinely decent man with a well-developed sense of fairness. Unfortunately, when you’re facing the ALP, there is no room for decency and fairness. It’s time Tony realised he needs to start salting their fields, then driving his enemies before him whilst enjoying the lamentations of their women.

  36. .

    No no no no no.

    Conan discusses how to treat the vanquished. From Mongol General’s self help guides based on the synthesis of Socratic and Confucian philosophies, namely his Best in Life series:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6PQ6335puOc

    That is good!

  37. Crossie

    It’s time Tony realised he needs to start salting their fields, then driving his enemies before him whilst enjoying the lamentations of their women.

    And right away, not some time down the road.

  38. Adellad

    To Mr Bear – if we must be tagged with Rann, then Qld has Katter as its personification, Tasmania can have Bobby Brown, Victoria Joan Kirner, the West Alan Bond, ACT Jon Stanhope, NT anybody in the NT and Sydney can have (there are so many to choose from) say Mark Latham.

  39. MT Isa Miner

    Oh come on

    #1195901, posted on February 19, 2014 at 11:34 pm

    I actually don’t think Abbott does this because he’s a jellyback. I think he does it because he’s a genuinely decent man with a well-developed sense of fairness. Unfortunately, when you’re facing the ALP, there is no room for decency and fairness. It’s time Tony realised he needs to start salting their fields, then driving his enemies before him whilst enjoying the lamentations of their women.

    I reckon this might be true. Still when will he wise up? Because he’s doing it wrong AND he’s pissing us off royally!

  40. Dianeh

    If Rann is so hard done by (according to the left) why would he take such a position?

    It is Rann’s choice whether he accepts Rome or not.

    The left embarrass themselves by these faux complaints. The sad part is they are far too stupid to recognise that they should be embarrassed.

  41. CatAttack

    I concur. I reckon Abbott is basically a fair minded and decent person.

    Which is why this persona that has been crafted for him by the Left always seems such a stretch. Abbott has been in public life for decades. You would think that if Abbott was the misogynistic devil he is portrayed as that there would be a queue of employees, colleagues and acquaintances a mile long who could come out and support the Left in backing up this picture. But they just don’t exist.

  42. CatAttack

    Note though that Left in their criticism of Downer often conveniently don’t mention the transfer of Rann to Rome at all. A very typical strategy.

    What a chore. A stint in Rome. Send him to Pyongyang.

  43. Elizabeth (Lizzie) B.

    When will the LNP think of their voters?
    Oh, silly me. At election time only, of course.
    Nomenklatura does seem to cover it.

  44. feelthebern

    Has Rann gotten the Italian role or the Vatican role?

  45. Wozzup

    I am simply flabbergasted at the approach taken by this Liberal government. Hopeless, absolutely bloody hopeless. And Rann for God’s sake! Why bloody Rann, he is just a lparochial politician – and from the wrong side of politics. Its not as if he brings a single solitary thing that someone else with better credentials does not. Abbott, where are those dangly things you are supposed to keep in your budgie smugglers?

  46. Scarlet N. Black

    Rome is the seat of a number of international organizations primarily concerned with global food issues and international development. As such, the Australian Embassy there, in addition to Italian representational duties, plays a highly political role in representing Australia at these various organizations. Rome is therefore an important post for Australia in terms of conveying its international stance on a wide variety of development issues. It would be appropriate and wise to appoint a career diplomat to such a post rather than someone with any preconceived or established political/global agenda.

  47. Because Abbott is probably a decent man, he lacks the killer instinct that is required to prosper in politics. That’s a shame, because it should be good to have a decent man leading the country.
    In this case, it’s just a waste of an electoral term.
    TA will be dumped by the panicking Liberal nomenklatura in the lead up to the next election because he looks like a carbon copy of all the LINOs we’ve seen before.

  48. will

    How much are these guys paid? And while on these posts, do they still keep all parliamentary financial benefits they accrued?

    You think they pay their pensions back?

  49. .

    If so Scarlett, then we ought to appoint Tim Fischer, a man from the food bowl, not a man who wants to rip water out of the food bowl so Adelaide doesn’t have to dam their own fucking water.

    I say the same of Bracks and his fucking hypocritical sugarloaf pipeline.

    Scum.

  50. Fred Lenin

    When the RC into the criminal alp finds ranns little midemeanours and charges him ,will he be able to get political asylum in Italy? Amd dont tell me he did nothing wrong ,he WAS and IS a menber of a vpcriminal organisation . The alp,.its like lawyers ,not all lawyers aepre crooks only 85 per cent are!Wonderwhat the percentage is in the alp/greens / unions?

  51. Peewhit

    Fred, not all lawyers are crooks, some are prosecutors.

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