David Rabbitborough's A to Z of Australian Species

 

THE POLITICIAN

Few creatures have been so perfectly built for survival as the politician. With its thick skin, its voracious appetite and killer instinct it is virtually no more than a survival machine.

Despite its small brain it is extraordinarily agile, capable of dodging issues, juggling figures and bending over backwards all at the same time. It has an odd habit of baring its teeth and shaking hands with all other species. Particularly vigorous teeth baring and handshaking and apparently means that it has forgotten your name.

When attacked the Politician puffs itself up and repels its assailant with a blast of hot air. But for all its aggression it is a passive creature that usually doesn't move unless prodded. It also hibernates. For most of the year politicians remain in their own territory, resting on their laurels, cushioned by their specially padded expense accounts, nurturing their nest-eggs but as the cold weather comes, they begin a great migration to the high country of NSW where they retires into a dark musty den called Parliament to sleep the winter away. During this period it is quite dangerous to disturb them and the den often reverberates to sound of some very nasty fights.

It also is worth noting that this creature usually attacks from behind. From time to time young bulls challenge old bulls for the leadership of the herd. If they are successful the old bull (or old cow) retires into a form of social oblivion called eminence. If unsuccessful then the young bull is likely to have his options cut off.

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