Monday, May 4, 2009

Bill Snedden

I'm not sure who Bill Snedden is. For some reason, I associate his name with William McMahon. I'm not sure why.

Let me go talk to Lord Wiki so I can find out who the hell this guy is.

Ah! He DOES have a connection to McMahon. McMahon appointed him treasurer at some point. But we'll get back to that later...maybe.

First things first.

Snedden was born on 31 December 1926. A New Years Eve baby!

Birthday website time.

He's a Capricorn, and he's a 7 in numerology. I've talked about these recently so no need to go over them again.

Like Tim Winton, Snedden was born in Perth.

Lord Wiki doesn't talk much about his childhood. He says Snedden was educated at state schools. For uni he studied law at the University of Western Australia. Before that though he was in the Royal Australian Air Force. He has something in common with our recent John Gorton then.

He got married in 1950 to a woman named Joy Forsyth. They ended up having four kids.

He was admitted to the bar in 1951. He'd be about twenty-five years old. That seems so young. I can't imagine a lawyer that young. Does that mean I'm getting really old?

In 1954, Snedden moved to Melbourne. I'm guessing he took his family with him. Why did they move? I don't know.

Lord Wiki says he practiced law until he was elected to the House of Representatives for the seat of Bruce. The name Bruce reminds me of sharks. But in this case, it's named for another Prime Minister of Australia. Stanley Bruce. I'm going to add him to my list. I like learning about Prime Ministers I've never heard of before. I'm fascinated by obscure country leaders. Although maybe if you're a real Australian, he's not obscure. Jack has a US president placemat though and there are men on there I've never heard of. They're never talked about. Millard Fillmore? Chester Arthur?

In 1965, Menzies made Snedden Attorney-General. I'm trying to figure out what an Attorney General is.....

I guess it's like being the main adviser. I guess that would fit Snedden and his law degree.

The current Attorney-General of Australia is Robert McClelland. I'll add him to the list too.

Snedden also became the Minister for Immigration and Minister for Labour and National Service. Lord Wiki says the latter was difficult because Snedden was put in charge of Vietnam War Conscription. Since this wasn't a popular thing, I'm sure Snedden had grief directed his way.

When Holt drowned, Snedden was one of those people considered to be the new leader. But Lord Wiki says the idea wasn't really taken seriously.

With McMahon as leader, Snedden was appointed as treasurer. He was also given the role of Deputy Prime Minister. Then McMahon lost to Whitlam. Snedden became the Liberal leader.

Lord Wiki says Snedden became the first Liberal Leader not to become Prime Minister. What? I'm confused. I can't even explain in words why I'm confused. I'll try. Does this mean all leaders of the Liberal Party eventually became Prime Minister? That seems doubtful to me. Or does it mean that every time, the Liberal Party has gained the Prime Minister office, the current leader of the Liberal Party got the job?

I'm going to look and see. Maybe.

It must be the latter because Andrew Peacock was leader of the party and he never became Prime Minister. There's also John Hewson. I won't count the new guys (Nelson, Turnbull, and Downer) because they haven't had their chance yet.

Snedden became Speaker of the House. He was the last Speaker to wear the full fancy British costume. It's too bad they stopped that! Watching Parliament in action is exciting enough, of course. But the costume would make it even more fun.

Snedden resigned from Parliament in 1983 when Hawke beat Fraser. Lord Wiki says he also separated from his wife. Why?

Oh! Here's some juicy stuff. Snedden died while having sex. If that's not enough......

He was having sex with his son's ex-girlfriend. Well, at least it was an EX-girlfriend.

I guess that's a good way to go.  Not so great for the woman though. And he was fairly young. I guess age sixty-one?

All right. I'm done with Lord Wiki. I shall look elsewhere now.

Here's an article about Snedden's death.

He died at Rushcutter Bay's Travelodge. I thought Rushcutter sounded familiar. I couldn't think of why for a moment. But now I remember. It's where we saw the fireworks in 2007.

I'm trying to find out if the Travelodge still exists. It doesn't look like it. The only locations they have are Wentworth Ave (the one we stayed at!), York Street, Phillip Street, and some ones up north. Toga Hospitality which owns Travelodge DOES own a Vibe Hotel in Rushcutters. Maybe this used to be the Travelodge?

The article came out in 2006. It seems this is when it was revealed that Snedden's last lover was his son's ex. He died in 1987 so that means the mystery was around for nineteen years.

This article says Snedden's son didn't know his father knew his ex. He thinks it was just a coincidence. How did he find out she was the woman though? From what I've read, she fled the scene.

Oh! The woman called the son after his father died. And then he kept the secret for many years. I wonder if he was mad at her.

The article says Snedden's death was part of a police investigation until they figured out he had just had a heart attack.

You know what I'm getting here....

It seems the most exciting thing about Snedden is his death. Well, at least so far.

I'll keep digging.

Okay, I found his grave. He's buried at Springvale Botanical Cemetary in Victoria. Their website is a Joomla one. I once tried making a website with Joomla. It was hell for me. It's SO much easier to have a blog!

This is an interesting website. I don't think I've ever seen such a beautiful advertisement for a cemetery before.

It offers a nice choice of services. You can do the cremation thing, burial, or stick yourself in a Mausoleum.

Yikes, they make death seem so damn complicated. All the places you have to notify. Forget it. I'm just going to live forever. I'll need to decide whether I want to pick the vampire route or the zombie one. Ah, not a hard choice. I'd rather drink blood than eat brains. Gross. Brains disgust me. Besides, vampires are sexy.

Seriously, death is way too complicated! Death is supposed to release you from complications. I think we should just feed bodies to sharks or something. Maybe crocodiles? Vultures! That's a good one. And the skeletons can be donated to museums. Or they might make good coat racks or something.

Anyway, back to Snedden. He has a pretty fancy grave.

The website gives some information about his childhood. He was the youngest of six kids. How cute. He was the baby!

His dad was Scottish.

He left school when he was fifteen. You mean you can leave school early and still succeed in the world? How shocking!

For five years, he served as the president of the Melbourne Football Club.

Back to death because I'm morbid.

The website FAQ page says 45% of dead Victorians are cremated.

They say the casket/coffin is burned with the body. Why the hell do they do that? Isn't that a huge waste of wood? Plus, you'd think that would release even more toxins.

Death is a strange business.

I'm trying to find stuff about Snedden, and what I'm finding is stuff that about McMahon. It's too bad I didn't find the McMahon stuff when researching McMahon. Maybe someday I'll research someone else and find good stuff about Snedden.

This editorial gives some insight into Snedden. It says, As a working class boy who’d made it, he had some superficial attraction for a party desperate to shrug off its born-to-rule tag. Or maybe that gives more insight into the Liberal Party.

A cartoonist gave him the nickname Mediocre Man. That's kind of mean. But I guess it's better than Scary Man, Bad Bad Man, or Yucky Smelly Man.

I read the following in Lord Wiki, but didn't fully understand; so I ignored it. But it seems Snedden lost an election and wouldn't admit it. He said he just didn't get enough votes. Pretty funny! It reminds me of something that someone said in my life, but I can't think of it offhand.

Oh well.

It's all a matter of semantics.

Once in a heated debate in the House of Representatives, Snedden said Woof Woof!
I might try that the next time I'm in a debate.

I'm starting to think debates are really worthless. There's way too much illogical crap and sensationalism used. The debate that has been driving me the most crazy lately is the vaccine one. It's really ridiculous. I think both sides, when extreme, are incredibly annoying. My new stance is I'm pro-vaccine and anti pro-vax people. Does that make sense? Probably not. That's why I should just shut up and say Woof Woof. Or maybe I should say Meow instead.

All right. This post is probably lacking. I apologize for that. But I'm tired. I'm hungry. Jack is asking for breakfast. Not fishing for compliments here...just stating the facts.


  1. Snedden will be remembered more for his death than his life.

    I don't think he was ever deputy prime minister, probably deputy Liberal leader under McMahon. Deputy PM was Country Party leader Doug Anthony.

    The Liberal Party was formed in 1944. Menzies, Holt, Gorton and McMahon were the first four leaders and all were Prime Ministers.

    Snedden succeeded McMahon after Whitlam came to power and never became PM.

    There have been several follow him in that lack of accomplishment: Peacock, Hewson, Downer and Nelson.

  2. Funny, I confuse Snedden and McMahon too. Snedden was the straight guy and McMahon was the gay one. I didn't know about the full regalia Snedden wore, he being the last.

  3. Michael: Thank you for the extra information and correcting my wrong stuff. I agree that he'll be remembered more for his death than life...probably like Holt.

    Andrew: I guess that's a way to keep the two straight in your head. Straight. Ha. I'm now laughing at my unintentional pun. Okay, well you'll keep ONE straight in your head.

  4. Dad knew Billy Snedden, always had time for him and would happily sit for hours chin-wagging with him in the RSL about gawd-only-knows-what.