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The 7.56 Report

The inimitable John Clarke is back with another hilarious collection of the highs and lows in the political career of the now ex-government. Interviews with Australia’s leading citizens, drawn from John Clarke and Bryan Dawe’s weekly broadcasts on ABC’s 7.30 Report, from 2003 to 2006.


Why have an election?

Yes, we get this one a lot. The simple answer is that the constitution provides for Federal elections to be held every now and again to give the impression that we live in a democracy. Just go with it.

How does it work?

Stage 1 . Each side picks a leader, one old and past it, one new and inexperienced; one from Sydney, one from somewhere else.

Howard, John Winston. 107 next Friday. Defending titleholder. Career highlights include: Treasurer (1977-83. 19% interest rates), Telstra (sold it), Reconciliation (stopped it), Global Warming (not happening), GST (pleaded not guilty but nailed on DNA evidence), Tampa (Premier’s Award for Fiction), Kyoto (No appearance, Your Worship), Child Labour (IR Reform), Iraq War (going well, please enjoy the music).

Rudd, Kevin Michael . 12. Mandarin-speaking Christian broadband nerd. Special subject: asking himself rhetorical questions.

Stage 2 . The media backs both sides. The new man romps ahead in the polls.

Stage 3. The parties swap policies. The old leader announces policies to address the failures of his own government. The new leader stresses his conservative credentials and undertakes, should he win, to build a better mousetrap. Both parties are now essentially absurd.

Stage 4 . An election is called.

Stage 5. You enter a booth to cast your vote. The lemons will come up. Select one of the lemons to become prime minister.

John Clarke
About the Author

John Clarke was born in New Zealand. He was and remains one of Australia’s best known and most loved faces on TV. A comedian, writer and actor, his appearances included the famous Fred Dagg character, The Gillies Report and The Games. John’s books include A Dagg at My Table, The Howard Miracle and The 7.56 Report. His only novel, The Tournament,...

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Text publication date:
30 October 2006
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Praise for John Clarke
andThe 7.56 Report

‘John Clarke and Brian Dawe are veteran purveyors of political comedy…a showcase of the dry, and sometimes obtuse, piss-takes on contemporary Australian politics that Clarke is famous for.’

‘The cracking wit of funnyman John Clarke’s dialogue with long-time collaborator Bryan Dawe leaps off the page of this book…the scripts are virtually audible.’

‘It’s hard to believe they have been doing it for twenty years—it still seems as fresh as it always has…This is political satire at its best…and a poignant reflection on four years of Australian politics.’

‘An absolute delight, a gem to remind us what brilliant satirists these two are.’

Other editions ofThe 7.56 Report