On the ascen­sion of Scott Mor­rison to the Prime Min­is­ter­ship of Aus­tralia

We’ve just swapped one psy­cho­path for another,
If we’re honest. It’s just that one wore the mask better.
In truth, the chal­lenge will always be that
Father knows best, or thinks he does and that
Mother etern­ally needs to do better with more evid­ence
And for half the pay to even be in the run­ning.
So long as they’re run­ning the country like we’re all
Naughty little chil­dren who can’t save the ice-cream
Until after dinner, or worse, little sin­ners going to hell
Because you’ll go blind, don’t you know —
We’re in ser­ious trouble.

There’s a moment, on the cusp of adult­hood,
Where you learn that everything you learned at school —
That taste-buds are dif­ferent on dif­ferent parts of the tongue,
That Pluto is a planet or isn’t or is, sort of,
That Burke and Wills were brave explorers —
That all of that was just a best-fit theory or a story
Someone told, woven together with what they had
At the time, threads and assump­tions and reflec­tions.
And in that moment, you have a few choices:
To weep at the deep uncer­tainty of the uni­verse,
Cul­tural relativism, not knowing, the asymp­tote of surety,
And, pulling up your big girl pants, take a deep breath
And con­tinue to work together with others anyway,
In eternal ded­ic­a­tion to evid­ence and the pur­suit of know­ledge,
Dis­covery, growth, truth, recon­cili­ation, to making
Amends and cor­recting the record, revis­iting and revising —
Or, and here’s the crux of it, you double-down,
Wager everything on the fra­gile edi­fice of the Enlight­en­ment
And Ration­alism, famous old men and their Empires,
And then, of course, you have to dis­credit the rest.
Gas­light the lot of them, move the goal­posts,
Whistle for the dogs and watch them come run­ning,
And lock up anyone who ques­tions the great Gods
Of Industry and Mor­ality and Family,
Yea, unto the last 12-year-old who might not burn in hell,
But will def­in­itely burn in Nauru if you lot have any­thing
To say about it.

But you’re clever. And half the country’s fallen
for the bait and switch; they just want someone
To crib off, and if you tell them you’ve got the cheat sheet,
And the answers are dead cer­tain, they won’t even have to
Think for them­selves.