Senate debates

Tuesday, 30 November 2021



7:20 pm

Photo of Eric AbetzEric Abetz (Tasmania, Liberal Party) Share this | | Hansard source

As we all know, GetUp is a discredited organisation. Not only has it misrepresented an independent statutory authority—namely, our Australian Electoral Commission—it has also had two findings made against it for misleading the Joint Standing Committee on Electoral Matters, which is tantamount to lying under oath. It's reprehensible and indicative of its moral bankruptcy.

Not to be deterred in its campaign of misrepresentation, GetUp's misnamed human rights team set themselves the task of 'spreading joy' to people in aged care last Christmas. To ensure people in aged care would 'feel the holiday cheer' while in lockdown, GetUp members wrote self-described 'heartfelt letters', according to GetUp, to highlight the love and generosity of the GetUp movement. These were in a book delivered to aged-care homes across the country. Who would have thought it: the bird-doggers and hardcore Marxists at GetUp are really softies at heart! Their self-described heart-warming book titled Some Love from our Community to Yours, was:

… to make sure you folks in aged care get the love you deserve in this holiday season … love GetUp.

Unsurprisingly, for those familiar with GetUp, their 'heart-warming' offering to aged-care residents containing 'beautiful letters' was laced with political poison. Here are some excerpts: 'I've generally seen the best in people—state and federal Liberal politicians aside. Apologies for my language, but the federal government have been absolute bastards towards those they've been required to care for, whether they're refugees, senior citizens or Aussies also trying to get home, along the predictable racial and financial lines.' This gives you a flavour of GetUp's insensitive, base and ugly offerings, with complete disregard for the aged. There's no Christmas cheer, no good will, no joy and no peace, just 100 per cent hardcore political propaganda seeking to relentlessly attack the coalition government under the dishonest guise of Christmas greetings. There's no depth to which GetUp will not sink if it perceives some benefit for its perverse, extreme left-wing world view.

Another offering in the book reads: 'Aged care should never be a place one is put in readiness for the end, but a place where life, both long and eventful, can be celebrated. Pity our federal government doesn't value this, but there we are.' Let me repeat—this is distastefulness writ large: 'Aged care should never be a place one is put in readiness for the end.' Can you imagine the sensitivity level for such a statement? It's negative, infinitely callous and brutal—anything for cheap political advantage at the expense of aged-care residents. How do these people sleep at night or show their faces? Another ugly offering says: 'It appals me, the lack of federal government care for our ageing population. But that's the government, and mostly they are useless twits.' Really? Again, this is indicative of the standards and behaviour of GetUp. Unwitting people donate to this organisation without realising it abuses their funds to spread abuse and poison, such as I've quoted.

Then there is the question of whether all the writers were even real. Two have the same picture—just a tad awkward—suggesting fabrication.

My plea to GetUp this Christmas is: Give aged-care residents a break. Spare them your confected love and sham exercises of compassion used to peddle your ugly political propaganda. The men and women who have built our country and society—of which we are the beneficiaries—should not be subjected to such nasty, dishonest political campaigns by GetUp, especially under the guise of Christmas greetings. It is a huge disservice and displays a complete disrespect for the Christian celebration of Christmas.