Allan Takes Aim Blog

Carry on Canberra

Posted on: 24 June 2009

Watching the parliamentary debates on ABC TV over the last few days gave me a very deep sense of déjà vu but when I couldn’t remember why, I turned off the TV and started to read the film reviews in Panorama the Canberra Times Saturday Magazine.

But even as I read various reviews I couldn’t get the parliamentary broadcasts and sense of déjà vu out of my mind. What was it about the debates? I kept asking myself. Do they bring back deep -seated memories of famous parliamentary debates I had heard or read about – they didn’t – or school debates. But when I thought about school debates I realised it couldn’t be them as they had been sensible.

And so as neither explanation fitted the bill I thought I’d google parliamentary debates to see if that would help. I thought I was onto something when one section said: “ … the quality and depth of a debate improves with knowledge and skill of its participants as debaters. Deliberative bodies such as parliaments, legislative assemblies, and meetings of all sorts engage in debates. The outcome of a debate may be decided by audience vote, by judges, or by some combination of the two. Formal debates between candidates for elected office, such as the leaders debates and the U.S. presidential election debates, are common in democracies.”

After reading this I started to wonder if, over the last few days, I had been watching parliamentary debates or an amateur dramatic society rehearsing a series of badly written and farcical political dramas. If what I had been watching was the latter, that would have been excusable, but when I looked up the TV Guide and found they really were supposed to be parliamentary debates, I was tempted to write to the Treasurer saying that if that was the best that politicians could do, the broadcasts should stop and every taxpayer given a refund of their eight cents a day.

The sense of déjà vu also kept nagging at me until the answer came while watching Corner Gas, a Canadian comedy show on SBS. Not that Corner Gas reminded me of the debates. Like the school debates, it was too intelligent. No, what flashed before my eyes were scenes from “Carry On” films.

A final comment: if the ABC continues to do these broadcasts they should give some consideration to calling the programme: “Carry On Canberra.” However, I hesitate to nominate who should star; I leave that to your imagination

For local news get “The Chronicle” your free community newspaper. Published every Tuesday.


1 Response to "Carry on Canberra"

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