Slagging people off for being too old for public service is mostly an impertinence best left to those who turned it into an art-form: the Baby Boomer generation. They’ve mostly been notoriously tough to move on from positions of power themselves. There’s no better example of that than the oldies dominated Greensparty that has the oldest political party leadership and yet constantly refers to “old parties.” Yesterday, their leader Christine Milne even slagged off retiring Labor legend Martin Ferguson as an “old stager.” Would it be impolite to point out her age?
Greensparty leader Christine Milne is older than retiring Labor MP Martin Ferguson and despite lots of goodwill for the long-time unionist turned highly effective and respected Resources minister who yesterday said he’d be retiring from Parliament, she felt free to slag him rather harshly and very ungraciously today:
Nasty Christine’s intervention was a real buzz-kill given the emotional send-off Ferguson received, including from normally pugilistic Tony Abbott, who in his polite and gracious enthusiasm has argued Labor needs more MPs like traditional Labor life-long unionist and second-generation MP Martin Ferguson and no more unionist careerists like Paul Howes, whose life’s work and pro-jobs, moderate Labor values seem rather similar to Ferguson’s.
As it happens, the retiring former Minister Ferguson was born on December 12th, 1953, making him fifty-nine years young.
While Greensparty boss Milne, fond of referring to the “old parties” despite being older than the Prime Minister and the Leader of the Opposition, was born May 14th, 1953, meaning she just turned sixty. She apparently plans to stay for two more elections before handing over to ex-merchant banker and Tasmanian Senator Peter Whish-Wilson, whose recent stalker-level enthusiasm for a “private session” with supermodel Jennifer Hawkins was seen by some concerned Greensparty officials as providing evidence of possible heterosexuality.
Whatever the age of their parliamentary leaders, the Greensparty’s story is really getting old. They can’t even do ageism without being dishonest about it.