Subjects: Victorian councils auditing children's books; Liddell Power Station
One of the most popular children toys and stories in the world is under threat today. All thanks, once again, to political correctness. Political correctness gets around doesn't it?
There is a push to ditch Thomas the Tank Engine because apparently everyone's favourite engine enforces gender stereotypes.
When this was news this morning, because Victorian councils are the latest offenders, they're auditing libraries, can you believe this?
So they are actually auditing libraries and schools and kindergarten, so spying, in a bid to strip them of books and toys that don't meet gender tests.
I have kind of grown sick and tired of these, kind of, controversies that aren't really a controversy.
But this affected my boy this morning because I was filling in on The Today Show and when Silvia Jefferies read the new about Thomas the Tank Engine.
I then got a text message from my wife where she said, let me read it for you right now, you better reign in the claims the Thomas could be banned, it is causing some mild panic in the house this morning.
I then had to have a bit of a correction on The Today Show to make sure that the kids knew don't worry, Thomas is going nowhere. However, he is under threat.
And then I noticed this, Alan Tudge, the Federal Government Minister posted a photo of his little boy, who is two-and-a-half I am told, young Richard, with a Thomas the Tank Engine shirt saying my boy is leading the resistance.
Alan Tudge, father and Coalition Minister is on the line. Alan Tudge, good afternoon.
So Richard is leading the crusade is he?
Absolutely, he would be absolutely devastated if we had to ban Thomas and he is a very big fan as that photo which I put on my Twitter account attests to.
This is political correctness gone mad and in some ways it is hilarious but it is also deeply depressing at the same time that these fruitcakes infiltrate even some sensible councils now, who are doing these audits and wanting to ban books which young kids just absolutely love.
The truth is Minister, every week there's someone else trying to ban something and a lot of these things are things that we have always grown up with that have never really caused anyone any harm.
And sometimes now I just get so frustrated with it that I ignore it. But this morning I realised, no hang on, this cuts into our real lives. It certainly did when Freddie happened to be watching the TV and he thought hang on a moment, no more Thomas the Tank Engine.
It is absolutely ridiculous. And you are right and if was just some of the people on Green councils that were doing this in Melbourne, and we know we have got some loony Green councils in Melbourne that are trying to ban Australia Day, and they don't want to do citizenship ceremonies on those days. That is one thing.
But you have got other councils like Manningham Council which is actually a relatively sensible council, it doesn't have any Greens on it I don't think, and even they are doing this type of thing. You sort of think, where is this going to stop?
And it does require a bit of resistance from everyday Australians to step up and sort of say can you just get out of our faces, let our boys be boys, let our girls be girls, let them play, enjoy themselves because you know what, people have turned out all right to date.
You say where is it going to stop, well I am really sorry to say it might stop with Winnie the Pooh, Minister because they are after Barbie as well. And even Winnie the Pooh - apparently Winnie the Pooh does not meet the gender test whatever they are.
I am a bit worried about Winnie because he hasn't got any underpants on, has he? I mean what sort of role model is he, walking around with no undies?
No that's true.
Seriously, it is both hilarious but also disturbingly depressing that we are even having this discussion about banning Winnie the Pooh or Thomas the Tank Engine. Where are they going to stop?
We know they are trying to infiltrate some of the schools as well with their Safe Schools Program where they try to encourage people to have gender fluidity and boys going to the girls' toilets and wearing dresses at school.
I mean you know, I think everyday parents particularly in everyday suburbs are just sick to death of this political correctness and just want their girls and their boys just to grow up in ordinary environments where they are taught well, where they have got good teachers, where they can play a sport, have respectful relationships, and hopefully live a healthy happy life.
We are talking to Federal Minister Alan Tudge. I might just ask you about some serious news.
The Energy Minister Josh Frydenberg has come out today criticising AGL for knocking back that offer from Alinta Energy to buy the Liddell coal fired power station in the Hunter Valley.
It has been described today as a strike against the national interest, the move here by AGL. They don't want to run it but they don't want anyone else to run it either.
It is very disappointing, AGL's decision to not sell Liddell. If they want to get out of coal fired power stations that's fine but they should be selling it to somebody else.
The Energy Minister has expressed his disappointment, he has spoken to the chairman and the CEO of the company because we are concerned if they get out then that will drive up prices for everyday Australians and that is not a good thing.
We want to see prices come down. We want good energy security and Liddell is very important to both of those things.
Alright, well he looks like a cute little boy, your two-and-a-half-year-old Richard. He is going all right, is he?
Yeah he is, he is going very well. You have got a young one as well haven't you?
Yeah, let him know that Freddie Fordham's on board, if he is going to start a protest movement to save Thomas the Tank Engine, Freddie will be right behind Richard.
Good stuff. We will be in there together.
Good on you Alan. Good catch up. Thank you very much. So there you go. Federal Minister Alan Tudge who took to social media today with a photo of his little boy, two-and-a-half-year-old Richard saying my boy is leading the resistance and it is serious.
I mean you do want to laugh it off but you have actually got real life councils stepping into schools and libraries and kindergartens and doing audits of the books and toys to see whether they meet gender tests and targets.