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It's not Hoyle, but it's not complete havoc either

By Richard Stanton - posted Monday, 4 June 2012

To the casual observer Question Time in the House of Representatives is senseless.

It's a bit like watching a game of American Football, or what we call gridiron.

We have absolutely no idea of the rules so everything the players do on field is meaningless.


It's as if the game is being played for the sole purpose of the enjoyment of the players.

As it is with the House of Reps. Question Time in the House does nothing more than make its television audience angry and irritated.

One need look no further than the Twitter #qt hashtag to find supporting evidence.

@nancycato! "young neighbour just yelled at me - angrily. I could tell because I see it often on #QT

@gaycarboys "we must all watch #QT now and scream if we think abbott is doing another runner.

@myklcaln "is Anna Burke starting #QT with a prayer or a starter's pistol today?"


@prronto "I think a speaker should be elected by the people – and be issued with a Colt Peacemaker."

@cargema "what is this parliament? Are we attending a play?"

What we perceive is that the traditional parliamentary idea of persuasive argument, backed by reputation, status and trust has vanished from the House and with it the prestige of the parliament as the premier social institution.

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About the Author

Richard Stanton is a political communication writer and media critic. His most recent book is Do What They Like: The Media In The Australian Election Campaign 2010.

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All articles by Richard Stanton

Creative Commons LicenseThis work is licensed under a Creative Commons License.

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