||Issue No. 214||26 March 2004|
The Security Shift
Interview: Baby Bust
Safety: Dust To Dust
Bad Boss: Shaming in Print
National Focus: Work's Cripplin' Us
International: Bulk Bullies
History: The Battle for Kelly's Bush
Economics: Aid, Trade And Oil
Review: The Art Of Work
Poetry: Sew His Lips Together
But Will He Get the Trains To Run On Time?
Uniting For Peace
THE OTHER PETER LEWIS
It appears that the Speaker of the South Australian parliament is off his medication again.
The phrase 'mad as a cut snake' springs to mind when one contemplates the former Liberal turned independent Peter Lewis. He has blamed his latest outburst in which he declared that politicians had "more balls than brains" on a "recent illness".
Any cursory study of the public career of this bloke with a few kangaroos loose in the top paddock shows that his illnes ain't recent. He's been off his trolley for years.
King Lewis the mad, famous for his fetish for dressing up in ceremonial regalia, was forced to apologise after his latest wanderings in the land of Lune.
Several female MPs objected to the comment and, showing a loose appreciation of which century we're in, the Speaker named Liberal MP Joan Hall for protesting.
Lewis is, of course, wrong at any rate. Politicians have neither balls nor brains.
What apparently triggered the latest foaming at the mouth episode was that quaint political ritual known as question time. Wherever the Westminster system creaks and groans parliaments are enthralled to this age-old ritual. Everyone, it seems, is resigned to the alternating Dorothy Dixers for the holders of the Treasury benches and scandal clad probing of Her Majesty's Loyal Opposition.
Everyone, that is, except the Hamlet of North Terrace, the inimitable Peter Lewis.
Our Tool Of The Week claimed that he was trying to get MP's to "see the silliness of their behaviour". If that's the case then all he really needed was a mirror.
Lewis' 25 years in parliament have certainly been eventful, from his support for deadbeat dads to association with a number of colourful characters. He also fancies himself as a bit of a Rambo type, with murky rumours of his military exploits incongruously floating around the mild mannered madman.
All of this is no doubt comforting for the 15 000 odd employees of the state of South Australia who are having a rough time trying to get a decent deal out of the very same asylum that Lewie the Loon presides over.
He has a quaint way with language, famous for some shoot-from-the-hip-without-the-brain-engaged-aphorisms like "people without profit is poverty", and "Tell me what I need to know - not what you think I'd like to hear."
Well Pete, what you need to know is that you're a nutter.
Our Tool Of the Week should take his ceremonial straight jacket into the Tool Shed this week, politics is crazy enough without having loose cannons like Lewis yapping away.
Besides, he's giving the name Lewis a bad rap.
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