You may have got the impression from earlier postings that Melbourne's Herald Sun was mainly a repository for the ramblings of developmentally delayed readers with too much unsupervised email time available.
This is not true. It is also a repository for the ramblings of developmentally delayed journalists. Take for instance today's front page headline, which screamed "RED ARMY" in huge letters.
The story, with an update noting the army's backdown, is here. It's all about the shocking revelation that the government planned to MAKE OUR BRAVE FIGHTING SOLDIERS WEAR CHINESE MATERIAL!!!!!
And so the headline, RED ARMY. Get it? Because they're communists? So our soldiers would be wearing communist fabric? So our army would be "red"?
GET IT YET?
Felix Sher, whose son Gregory was killed in a rocket attack in Afghanistan last year, said this morning questions had to be asked over what justified the bizarre cost-cutting strategy.
"Bizarre cost-cutting strategy"? The strategy is to cut costs. This is, you know, to save money. Apparently this is bizarre to the Herald Sun? No, Herald Sun - a "bizarre cost-cutting strategy" would be one where you, say, threw a million dollars in cash into the river in order to cut costs - that would be quite bizarre. A cost-cutting strategy that saves you money is not a bizarre one; it's actually quite a sensible one, I would have thought.
"If Greg was alive I don't think he would be happy," Mr Sher said. "To wear a Chinese-made uniform just to save a dollar ... I don't think any Australian soldier would be happy.
"Greg was devoted to his job and to his country but if he was alive he'd definitely be asking why the Defence Department were doing this.''
And maybe the defence department would say, "To save money, cockface - now get back in line".
Because MAYBE, Mr Sher, the idea is to save money on uniforms - which, in a world full of SANE PEOPLE, would be made wherever was most convenient and cost-effective, with a general agreement that it doesn't matter the slightest, tiniest, infinitesimal bit where the fabric got made, for Christ's sake.
Jennifer Ward, whose son Benjamin Ranaudo was killed in Afghanistan last year, said the cost-cutting strategy was going too far.
"It might just be factory work to some people, but that company would be proud to make those uniforms,’’ Mrs Ward told the Herald Sun.
Oh, well if they're PROUD. I mean, you didn't mention they'd be PROUD to make uniforms. By all means, let the necessities of the defence budget take a backseat to company pride - the self-esteem of factory workers is after all the main purpose of the Defence Force, innit?
Australian Defence Association executive director Neil James blasted the decision.
"Do we seriously expect our soldiers to fight a war dressed in a uniform made in China?" he said.
"There's a simple dignity issue."
Yes, how undignified! Good God, our brave diggers might catch Chineseness from their uniforms! How can any soldier feel dignified fighting in a uniform that is exactly the same as any other uniform, knowing the identical uniform was made in China? How could this bunch of sissy, pansy-arse, wussy, limp-wristed nancy-boys handle it, given they're such a bunch of soft, namby-pamby little girls they can't even handle putting on a foreign-made shirt? Pussies.
Oh yeah, and Sophie Mirabella weighed in:
Opposition industry spokeswoman Sophie Mirabella said it was outrageous.
"Our soldiers risk their lives under the flag and in the uniform of this country," she said. "It's dangerous, unpatriotic and tawdry for the Government to save a few dollars and buy the fabric overseas."
But we already knew she was a total fuckstick, so no need to pay much attention there.
Still, they backed down, so it's nice to see the Herald Sun's proud tradition of racist, xenophobic scaremongering continues to get results in the corridors of power.
Bravo Herald Sun.