One of the most amusing parts of this election has been the desperate activity of Tony Abbott in attempting to defend his turf of the seat of Warringah from Zali Steggall. Reading his twitter and Facebook feed is like watching an alien movie, where the alien is being forced to learn the skill of relating to humans and not quite understanding how it works.
The most amusing parts are the videos and photos, showing little knowledge of how to airbrush awkward moments. They are just so memeable. In addition, almost his entire campaign is about state issues. His website is all about a tunnel to the Northern Beaches, which is a largely state funded project.
In terms of the awkward social media moments, first there was a video shot outside a campaign meet and greet where people provided various responses.
Tony next to a toilet block, discussing the state issue of funding toilet blocks.
Next, underneath a meat cleaver.
Tony embracing rugby league, while other supporters avoid eye contact.
Ynot posting bad backwards photos from his supporters.
Talking to unsuspecting bus travellers about the lack of state run buses. Note the people desperately avoiding eye contact.
Then there’s the videos. All of them with bad sound, all of them recorded in one take, all of them bad. Just Tony spouting lies. A recent example had Tony putting a sticker on an unsuspecting Mercedes Benz, perpetuating the lie that Labor’s electric car target wants to “ban” all petrol cars and “get them off the road”
The last frame is an apt metaphor for Tony himself – he considers himself a good car, with plenty of life in him. Hence the social media blitz. If he wasn’t such a mendacious and compulsive liar who has caused more harm than virtually every other politician in our history, one could *almost* feel pity.
This feeling evaporates, of course, when you realise who he has as friends. His seat campaign has seen visits from Laura Jayes and Human Agro from Sky. One of his more recent tweets shows his friend, News Ltd columnist Piers Akerman, out on the campaign trail.
The tweet – now deleted – read that Tony was trying to talk to “friends and neighbours” and away from the “noise of the media”. The irony is one of the biggest of the campaign so far. Yes, he really wants to be well away from the noise of the media. The picture can be better seen this way:
Katharine Murphy has asked this question on Twitter about his campaign – I personally think it’s more stress than cunning.
Abbott has spent so many years out of his electorate, going to speak in London, helping out fellow reactionaries in their battles, fighting climate change science, that he feels out of place doing a local campaign.
Ynot Ttobba will always be an alien who doesn’t understand all that much about his fellow humans and how to be social. That’s why his campaign will continue to yield a lot of funny material.