Foot In Mouth Disease – Jovial Joe or The Grinch?

It seems that the Federal Treasurer Joe Hockey can’t win a trick. From a celebratory cigar outside of parliament house to bring in the leanest budget in a generation to suggesting that Australia’s poorest people will not be affected by the increase on petrol excise as they “don’t have cars, [and if they do] don’t drive very far in many cases”; Jovial Joe is quickly gaining a reputation as The Grinch.

It’s easy to feel a bit sorry for Mr Hockey. I mean really who would blame someone for having a cigar after putting together something as complex and overwhelming as a federal budget and his comments about Australia’s poorest people was factually correct according to the Australian Bureau of Statistics. 

However perception is the key in politics and it seems that the public has had enough. It is probably best to celebrate that kind of budget in private and to refrain from generalising and marginalising Australia’s poorest people with badly phrased words. Social media is awash with the phrase “other things poor people won’t do” and it seems like the once Jovial Joe is now less popular than the Christmas Grinch.

Still a day is a long time in Politics and Mr Hockey might once again rise to the lofty status of Jovial Joe, remember that only a year ago our current Prime Minister said that “no one, however smart, however well-educated, however experienced … is the suppository of all wisdom”. Indeed.