Pauline and Poona: a prediction, a predicament
In 1997, Pauline Hanson had already unwittingly penned the key to her future success
One Nation founder and leader Pauline Hanson, Australia’s most brazen racist, has a vision for the future. Hanson, who was first elected to parliament as an independent in 1996 and returned to Canberra as a One Nation senator in 2016, has come a long way — albeit very, very slowly. She is dawdling her way to the top and, at this rate, we can perhaps expect her to come to power in 2050. Hanson has always marketed herself and One Nation as the opposition to change — but while social and cultural customs are fickle and fleeting, Hanson’s bigotry is dependable.
This strategy will not serve her well in the future because, according to Hanson’s 1997 work, The Truth — a publication penned jointly by Hanson and unnamed “members” of the ‘Pauline Hanson Support Movement’¹ — unstoppable progressive forces are shaping Australia. According to Hanson, by 2050 Australia will have become the Republic of Australasia: a state in the United States of Asia. The World Government will have installed an Asian, lesbian cyborg named Poona Li Hung as President of Australasia. So if Hanson wants to rule in 2050, which we assume she does, she would do well to model herself on Poona Li Hung. Hanson must choose between her stagnant strategy and the chance to wield real power.
Hanson, age 63, should consider becoming a cyborg if she is serious about becoming president. As noted above, Hanson plays the political game at a geriatric pace. Without an upgrade, Hanson will die before she has the chance to decree, or veto, or generally unleash her wrath. This is especially true when we factor in the climate crisis. In The Truth, Hanson hedges her bets on climate change and admits that “the Greenies…were right in all their predictions” (p.159). It’s a dire situation. Poona rules that cars are to be ‘technologically castrated,’ so they can only chug along at walking pace, before demanding a “sacrifice” and banning cars outright (p.161). Hung’s predecessor, President Ng, “retired because of her severe respiratory ailments” (p.158). Hanson not only presents cyborgification as a survival tactic; she goes as far as to call the creation of a fully-fledged robotic president “real progress” because “they will be more suitable to Australasia’s … polluted air” (159). If Hanson herself is to avoid Ng’s fate, she should heed her own intuition and remake herself in Poona’s image.
Hanson will only succeed if she drops the ‘authentic underdog’ act and bends to the will of a greater power — specifically, to the World Government. In any case, Hanson could not resist the World Government if it is as powerful as Hanson makes out. Hung is only President because she “was felt by the World Government to be the most suitable president” (p.159). Moreover, the Government could have pressured the “joint Korean-Indian-Chinese research team” that produced Hung’s neuro-circuits to hardwire pro-Government sentiment into her cyborgic DNA (p.159). Did the Government deem Hung “suitable” because she is more Bureaubot than human? Only [REDACTED] knows, and if you wanted to find out, you’d have to go to [REDACTED] and see [REDACTED]. If Hanson becomes a World Government pawn, like Hung, she too could yell great cinematic one-liners, like, “there are no rights at all, beyond those which we give you” at her subjects, all from the comfort of her “ram-proof tank” (p.160).
In The Truth, and in every waking moment of her day-to-day life, Hanson claims that the world is increasingly hostile to white people; in light of this, Hanson should follow Poona’s lead in not being white. In The Truth, Hanson highlights the plight of the white by juxtaposing Poona’s character with the character of an unnamed white man — let’s call him Al.
Poona is famously “of multiracial descent, of Indian and Chinese background” (p.159). Hanson implies that Poona’s cultural and ethnic identity is not under threat because “when Australasia’s Constitution as a state in the United States of Asia was amended by the World Government Security Council to allow the right of entry and citizenship for any refugee or displaced person”, the “ethnic population changed to a Chinese and Indian mix” (p.158).
In contrast, Al is characterised as a “crazed blonde haired man, of a seemingly insignificant minority racial group tottering on extinction” who goes on a “rampage of destruction” in his illegal car and “kill[s] many citizens” (pp.159-160). (Yes, the one terrorist in Pauline Hanson’s story is a white guy with a thing for vehicle-ramming. Her prescience knows no bounds.)
Al is lonely and mad; we can conclude that his loneliness has driven him mad. Admittedly, much of Al’s misery surely stems from the fact that he is oppressed by gender equality; Hanson would naturally be better off than Al in 2050, by virtue of her gender, and would be respected even amongst other women, because she is obviously empowered as fuck. But would Hanson’s female privilege offset her white woes?
Now imagine Pauline alone on streets of the capital, Vuo Wah, “formerly Canberra, but now a suburb of the Great City stretching all the way up the Eastern Coast of Australasia” (p.160). Pauline emerges into the half-light of a smoggy Australasian sunset, the old Australian flag tied around her shoulders like a cape, to hunt for fish and chips.
As soon as she sets foot in town, a non-white wave sweeps her off her feet. Her little red head bobs up and down in a sea of dark hair as the tide of PoCs carries her away. Pauline cooees for help, hopelessly, tragi– “Oi.” What now? Someone speaks her language? Oh, it’s “crazed” Al.
Now Pauline is in the middle of an ever-expanding ocean of brown people with only a terrorist for company. Of course, Pauline could end her torment by embracing multiculturalism — but she would lose herself in the process. No, Pauline can’t let Australasia defeat her. She must stick to her own kind; now, her own kind is just Al.
Pauline and Al cha-cha away the days and nights, adrift, alone. Pauline and Al have grown close now, fallen in love now, are to be married, n–
NO! Poona, riding a Chinese dragon, suddenly swoops out of the sky. Her dramatic entrance is accompanied, inexplicably, by Bollywood music, which really does not fit the mood.
Heterosexuals may not marry in this land, Poona screeches, metallically.
Oh Al, let’s run away, Pauline cries.
Where to? Poona intones, cyborgically. The World Government is watching, always watching.
Pauline turns to face Al. We’ll laugh and love and live on the run, until they find us.
Poona pulls out her pistol, wonders why she has a pistol when she is a cyborg — why isn’t my left arm a pistol? — then shrugs, aims, fires.
Al cries out: Pauline, kiss m— but a halal sausage shoots through their near-kiss and hits Pauline in the face.
Pauline keels over in agony, as the certified meat eats into her soul.
Poona, spare me, I’m just a man, what would I know! Al attempts to swim away but gets caught in a rip of refugees.
Poona shoots Pauline, again and again, sausage after sausage, like the morally bankrupt lesbian that she is, until Pauline is finished. She cackles, mechanically, then flies away on her dragon.
Pauline is too broken to move. She just lies there, in a pool of halal juice, and weeps. She tries to cry herself to sleep but questions haunt her all night. Why did Poona have halal sausages? Is Poona Muslim? Can Poona be Asian and Muslim?
She howls ‘Advance Australia Fair’ at the red Australasian moon until dawn breaks — until the call to prayer echoes throughout Vuo Wah, and drowns out her fractured lullaby.