Following Barnaby Joyce’s decree that the Australian Nationals will need to move further to the right in the wake of the NSW state election result and the advances made by the Shooters, Fishers and Farmers Party, The Bug talked to the former Deputy Prime Minister at one of his homes in Tamworth via Skype to see how he intended to achieve that goal. The Bug apologises for the poor sound quality of the interview.
The Bug: Thanks for your time, Mr Joyce.
Joyce: Barnaby, please.
The Bug: Okay, fine. Before we start, Barnaby, what’s with the brown shirt?
Joyce: You noticed that straight away, reich?
The Bug: You mean right.
Joyce: That’s what I said. Right. That’s the new colour I’ll be arguing the Nationals need to adopt for, you know, product differentiation. Of course, the party for the bush should be green, but the Greens already have that. Labor has red, the Liberals have blue, Clive Palmer has yellow, that doctor sheila in Wentworth has purple, One Nation has the NRA. Still, a lot of the country is pretty brown since the time I was Agriculture Minister so I think brown suits the Socialist Nationals down to a tee….
The Bug: The Socialist Nationals? My goodness, that’s another brave move. Your idea?
Joyce: There’s nothing at all wrong with having the word Socialist in our party’s title. Even back when we were called the Country Party, we’ve always been strong agrarian socialists. As the backbone of our nation, rural producers have always asked for nothing more than to be left alone so they can get on with their jobs of providing food to the world and keeping the country prosperous. Through marketing boards that control prices by manipulating supply and demand through production quotas, oversupply stockpiles and the like. And of course, to scream blue murder if the government doesn’t bail us out immediately times get tough through droughts and floods. And, of course, to be forever vigilant in the fight against sub humans in the cities…
The Bug: Sub humans?
Joyce: Some humans. I said some humans in the city. Sorry if I’m not coming across all that clearly. I think maybe I’ve picked something up overnight?
The Bug: The old change-of-season sniffles, hey?
Joyce: A barmaid in Uralla, actually, but where were we? Ah, yes. Those communist workers in the cities always out on strike for more pay and better conditions. Never knowing their place. Always with their hands out. The Socialist Nationals will always have them in our sights. I love my native Austria and I’ll always fight for what’s best…
The Bug: Australia?
Joyce: That’s what I said, Australia. I’ll always fight for what’s best for it. You know that.
The Bug: Sure. But there’s no denying where your loyalty lies. You do love your country roots, don’t you?
Joyce: Well, that’s obvious. But can we please stick to politics and the direction I believe the Socialist Nationals need to move in …
The Bug: But that’s the stumbling block at the moment, isn’t it? You’re not the current leader…
Joyce: Don’t get me wrong here. I think Malcolm is doing a fine job as stopgap leader…
The Bug: Michael. Michael McCormack.
Joyce That’s what I said. Michael. I want to thank him for filling in for me but it’s time to consider mien fuhrer prospects.
The Bug: My future?
Joyce That’s what I said. My future. But we now need to take stock and move in the reich direction…
The Bug: The right direction?
Joyce: That’s what I said. The right direction. It’s what we need to do now, come heil or shine… heil or shine? H..E..I..L? Hello! You haven’t picked me up on that one?
The Bug: Oh, right. Good one. Missed that. But are you confident you have the numbers to take back the leadership?
Joyce: I think I now have the numbers I need in mein kamf…
The Bug: My camp?
Joyce: That’s what I said. My camp. I really do think the numbers are there. Because, mate, if we don’t do something pretty soon we’re going to lose more and more votes to the Rooters, Fishers and…
The Bug: The Shooters. The Shooters, Fishers and Farmers Party.
Joyce: That’s what I said. The Shooters.
The Bug: Sounds like things are going to get pretty nazi in the months ahead?
Joyce You mean nasty?
The Bug: That’s what we said. Nasty.