Strange Politics: Goodbye to the worm, hello to the comments

REMEMBER the worm, the wriggly TV-dwelling stripe that told us who was winning our leaders' debates?

Politicians loathed the notoriously temperamental creature, but it was an audience favourite until it inexplicably vanished from our screens in this election campaign.

Sure, it relied on a dubious method for gauging audience opinion, but its disappearance left a gigantic, wonky-shaped hole in the political landscape.

Until now. As a big believer in informing my opinions by mob rule, the first live Facebook debate on Friday night was a revelation for me.

We no longer need to even watch the debate - here is what I learnt from reading the comments.

Malcolm Turnbull was looking "so tiiired", wore a hideous yellow tie and gave a "p**s-weak" response when quizzed on same sex marriage.

So shaky, apparently, was his performance, it prompted one Liberal voter to "switch to Labor". Bill Shorten was the clear winner among commenters.

Facebook user John Paul Smith noted the absurdity of "trying to watch a political debate online" when the "government hasn't built a good enough internet network for you to watch it without the live stream buffering constantly".

Some crackpots appeared, of course, but the live comments achieved something their limbless predecessor never could.

I reluctantly admit it was time for the worm to retire and spend his twilight years drinking compost mojitos.



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