Petard also handily translates to 'fart' -- the same noise emanating from Malcolm Turnbull's opposition backbench whenever he tried to push the Coalition's promised bipartisan message on climate change action. One of the main culprits was the National's climate change denier-in-chief, Barnaby Joyce, and for his noisy efforts in the plot to install Tony Abbot as the new opposition leader in his recent climate denier coup, he has been promoted to the shadow cabinet.
You would think Barnaby would now conduct himself with polite restraint, but no. He wasted no time farting in the general direction of China, and America, only to be told by Abbot to now stop his public emissions.
Ironically, one of the best outcomes of promoting Barnaby to the front bench, is that he may finally prevented from airing his more off-tune, odorous odium.
UPDATE - it ain't gonna work out...
Phillip Coorey on the dillema facing the retail Liberal party:
Joyce rose with the full imprimatur of Minchin and Abbott but he drove a hard bargain. He wanted the key portfolio and demanded the shadow ministry be expanded by one so his entry did not result in a fellow National being punted. There are 14 Nationals in Parliament - nine MPs and five senators. Nationals make up 15 per cent of the Coalition caucus and 20 per cent of its shadow cabinet.
If the idea of promoting Joyce was to get him into the tent to curb his excesses, it failed miserably in week one.
There will be no reining in of Joyce. As he told the Herald on Tuesday: "It's not as though you have a personality transplant when you go into cabinet."
Being a practical peoples, I think Australians would just settle for a brain-transplant.