Born 2 March 1948, Melbourne
, Jeffrey Gibb Kennett
was the Premier
of the state of Victoria
from 1992 to 1999.
Elected on the back of a landslide backlash against the previous Labour government led by Joan Kirner, Kennett inherited the state in complete disarray. It has been suggested that Victoria was technically bankrupt at the time. Kennett put a series of reform policies in place, as part of an overally strategy to get 'Victoria On The Move'. Some of these policies were quite controversial, most notably those dealing with the privatisation of Victoria's public assets. Those who support Kennett claim that with these policies he 'he masterfully dug Victoria out of the red and gave all Victorians their pride back'.
Both Kennett's critics and his political supporters argue that he ran Victoria as a business. Sometimes, it would seem that accountability suffered under his leadership; he had many business friends who prospered under his privatisation regime, not the least of which the company owned by himself and his wife, which landed several lucrative Government contracts, under some allegations that proper procedures were not followed.
Kennett was made famous throughout Australia and perhaps further due not only to these factors, but also due to his highly developed ego and sometimes charismatic personality. He was a favourite target for the media due to the strength and variety of public opinion. One memorable event in Australian media history involved Kennett shovelling sand over an SBS television crew, shouting words to the effect of "Which of you will sue me?". Of course, no chargers were ever laid.
Jeff was hated throughout South Australia for stealing the Grand Prix, and hated throughout New South Wales, for a long history of state rivalry and for the long standing "We are better than you" arguments with Premier Bob Carr. Opinion elsewhere varied, but most people in Australia seemed to have an opinion one way or another, which was no mean feat of itself, in our large, apathetic country.
Also the subject of a song (spoken word) by TISM, recorded by Triple J, Jan 23 1993, Melbourne Showgrounds. Originally published on the now censored 'Australia the Lucky Cunt', it can now be found on 'The Beasts Of Suburban', published by Shock Records. Lyrics were taken from Victims of Tism (www.victimsoftism.org).
This may or may not accurately reflect the Australian Public's view on the man. All I can say is, it must be pretty close.
TISM - Jeff Kennett
Somalia has got the hunger
Yugoslavia's battle will always rage
Germany's got a guilty conscience
And Magic Johnson, he's got AIDS
But in the global battle for misery
You know, we all win it
'Cause we're all Victorians
And we've got Jeffrey Kennett
Stalin, he fucked communism
Germany and Hitler fucked the Yids
We all fuck the ozone layer
Woody Allen, he fucks the kids
Some people they fuck animals
But if you're kinky, why wait
Come on down to Victoria
See one man fuck a state
Queensland used to be the national joke
And Adelaide was full of Sadomasochism botty-spankers
Perth was full of Alan Bond
And Sydney, still full of wankers
Tasmanians!... I've never met met any
You know, but the whole nation knows that
We all voted in Jeffrey Kennett
And that makes every Victorian a prat
You know the West Australia and South Australians were right
They've know for years that Vics were pricks
And now the whole nation can agree
Come on, kick a Vic, kick a Vic, kick me
I'm one, come on kick each other
But you know don't forget that when we're kicking each other to death
There's one man who deserves it more than the rest
And his first name is...