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June 22nd 2016 print

James Allan

Turnbull’s Tony Tokenism

The man who white-anted his own party in order to oust its leader reckons he can make everything square with Delcons by inviting the target of his sabotage to share the stage at the Liberal Party's official campaign launch. As anxious colleagues are learning, he's really not that smart

turnbull look IIDelcons of Australia unite!  You have nothing to lose but the chains linking you to Malcolm Turnbull – the most left-leaning Liberal Party leader ever. Here is a man seemingly to the left of Paul Keating.  A man who plays lovey-dovey with Gillian Triggs, who appoints Ed Santow to the Human Rights Commission, who brings back Martin Parkinson who, in turn, appoints a former Green Party candidate, Lin Hatfield Dodds, to a top position in this government.

But, wait, it gets worse — a Prime Minister who cuts spending not a jot while attacking the superannuation of those with defined-contribution schemes (leaving the gold-plated defined-benefit schemes of judges and many ex-politicians comparatively untouched) and who throws billions with reckless abandon at submarines and South Australia to save Christopher Pyne. There is Turnbull’s ‘government can pick winners’ innovation bulldust, his green energy boondoggles and, of course, the republic. He is a creature who can’t even bring himself to campaign on keeping the boats stopped, on union violence and corruption, on any of the things that would have made the Coalition a sure winner under Tony Abbott, PM.

But wait. After Liberal packager Mark Textor’s prediction from months back that conservative voters simply do not matter because they won’t have the stomach to vote Labor in order punish the Libs, we are now seeing signs the top Turnbull people are reaching out to us Delcons.  Yep, in the most grudging way imaginable they are offering us a small token.  What is that token?  Why, they are inviting Tony Abbott to today’s official Liberal Party launch!

That’s it.  Abbott will get to be up there with former Liberal prime ministers.  This is being quietly sold as building bridges to us Delcons. Wow, what a gesture!  Has it got you reaching for a pencil and giving your local Lib candidate a 1st preference?  No?  Me neither.

Look, this is meaningless bumpf with a soupçon of desperation thrown in.  If that’s all it takes to win back us Delcons after the unremitting leftward drift under Turnbull – make that a tidal wave – then you are as cheap and easy a date as they come.

Let me say it again: Abbott had big faults. He was awful on 18C.  He was for far too long attached to an idiotic Paid Parental Leave scheme that was massively expensive and undermined his message about getting spending under control.  He tried to play nicey-nicey with the ABC instead of going for them head-on (ludicrously placing Turnbull in charge of a billion dollar a year behemoth that assiduously promoted him as the palatable alternative to Abbott).  He failed to write off the Senate early on and, instead, rack up 50 or 60 double-dissolution trigger bills for the mother of all double dissolution elections (not this pathetic Turnbull double dissolution election for two basically meaningless bills, the union one being a comparative trifle).  Yet, with all of the above conceded, in any straight up comparison to Turnbull it is plain that Abbott was miles better.

Abbott was miles better on free speech (in the sense that lousy is miles better than God-awful); Abbott was better by far, and more trustworthy, on the boats; Abbott was better (not great, but better) on standing up to the renewable energy rent-seekers; Abbott (and Hockey) were better on trying to cut spending.  If you are small-government, strong-border, Hobbesian like me you can’t pick a single area where Turnbull is better than Abbott.

As a result, I say the best thing to do in this coming election is to hold your nose, drink a double whisky, and preference the Libs below Labor.  Take the painful medicine of three years of Shorten as the lesser of two evils. Turnbull is dragging the whole political spectrum left and will continue to do so if he wins. If you think in terms of  ‘the next four elections’, instead of just ‘this one election’, then getting Malcolm out of The Lodge is the right choice, the only choice.

To try to change that calculation, Turnbull is (wait for it) inviting Tony to the official party launch. That, seemingly goes the thinking in Textor/Sinodinos central headquarters, will win us Delcons over.  In spasms of gratitude we will reunite with the Turnbull people and peace will reign over the party formerly known as ‘Liberal’.

Hmm.

Doesn’t work for me.  You?

Comments [14]

  1. Bill Martin says:

    No way, not a chance!

  2. en passant says:

    I have already voted. My bottom 4 in the Reps was 4. Liberal, 5. Labour, 6. Animal Rights, 7. Greens.
    In the Senate I was able to select 32 below the line without voting for any Liberal, Labour, Green or loony character.

    • nfw says:

      Perhaps you meant to write: “…Green or any other loony characters.” Your voting pattern looks awfully similar to mine. I still can’t get my head around the need to number 6 boxes above the Senate line when simply numbering one box generates all the preferences for the voter. What’s the point of the other 5 choices? Must be me.

      I once numbered all 117 boxes in one election in a random order (well random enough to ensure the socialists and their ilk were at the bottom) and to give the AEC staff something to do. The woman at the desk was dumb struck when I said I had made a mistake and wanted another ballot paper in exchange. Apparently nobody ever did that as we are all expected to be sheep. Or is it goats now?

    • [email protected] says:

      Well you are a delcon. I filled in every square above the line. I put ALP #13, greens #37, #38 and last = LNP. The LNP scrutineers will tell headquarters that you are just a dumb delcon giving your EFFECTIVE preference to LNP.

  3. Homer Sapien says:

    The sooner Turnbull is gone the better.

  4. msimm says:

    With respect guys..am i being too politically incorrect using that term….i think the fairest way to show your resentment at turnbull would be to preference those senators that voted for tony high up and then leave the senators that voted against tony out of your preferences. No need to throw the baby out with the bath water. That way turnbull, if reelected would have no doubt about where his real base lies. Subjecting us to even 3 years of shorten in this environment of budgets and islamism is suicidal and not fair to my kids future. This is the fair and rationale alternative.

    • Jody says:

      Agree with this. I’m philosophical about the outcome because I don’t like the way the polity and society is going – period! It would make no difference who leads the Coalition – the Senate will be running things, and that won’t be a conservative agenda I can promise you. Better to vote for team Coalition because cross benchers have a nasty habit of making self-interested, short-time decisions and it usually has nothing to do with ANY electoral mandate.

      Vote Coalition on 2 July and hope that Turnbull burns himself out and that Morrison and Frydenberg run the party shortly thereafter. At least ScoMo has guts and won’t cow-tow to identity politics. That man has GUTS. But, as I said elsewhere, the country doesn’t want strong leadership because it has such a limited sense of itself and its own cultural value. My answer is to Vote Coalition, spend your superannuation savings and enjoy life. I liked the ad I saw today: “I worked in a way most people WOULD NOT and now enjoy my retirement in a way most people COULD NOT”. BRAVO.

  5. en passant says:

    Jody,
    Your fair-haired little boy, ScoMo voted for Turdbull over loyalty to his mentor to ‘advance’ his career. Now he is going to retrospectively tax your super (but not his own) = and you think he has ‘guts’? Why and how can you forgive such political treachery at all?

    I worked 7-days a week for 30-years and missed holidays, etc so I would never have to depend on the taxpayer (who is me) and now I find that by doing so I was robbing the poor …? My thrift has been retrospectively been declared ‘criminal’. Big Brother lives in Canberra (and Victoria).
    I have a choice, so I have no intention of rewarding our Orwellian politicians for their twisted tales and fabulism by voting for them.
    See my earlier comment above.

    • Jody says:

      I think Scott is caught between a rock and a hard place. He knew Abbott was going down and who would join the “Titanic” under those circumstances. I wouldn’t!! Besides, he’s one of the few to speak up about things, such as vilification towards those who don’t support same sex marriage. That takes guts because it’s not Turnbull’s position!!

      I know what you mean about working 30 years for missed holidays; we did the same for 23.5 years. And we had 5 children to feed and educate. No handouts, nothing expected, and 18% interest rates on our mortgage. I anticipated the superannuation changes and deliberately kept half my assets out of it, taking advantage of good tax free thresh-holds for what remains outside (and my kids won’t have to pay 15% tax to inherit!). It would have been wise to keep a proportion of your assets OUT of superannuation; I kept half outside!! My accountant kept saying from 2008, “keep putting those shares across into super” and I replied, “No; I don’t trust government – they remain outside because of ‘legislative risk”. Bingo.

  6. colroe says:

    Is it just me? Why would Abbott attend Turnbulls party launch? I have vengeance in mind but Abbott must be made of sterner stuff and displays a loyalty to his party that the Gang of 54 from that same party never gave to him. I would be ashamed to appear on stage with a fraud who did his best to destroy my career! At least Kevin 07 had the decency to stay away from the Labor launch which featured that other fraud, Gillard.

  7. mags of Queensland says:

    I watched the interview of Tony Abbott with Andrew Bolt this evening and I have to say that the courage and integrity of the man is amazing. He is still the man who would sacrifice his job for the nation, unlike Turnbull who would sacrifice the nation to keep his. I do not have a difficulty with voting for the LNP here in my electorate as we will be having a new candidate. But my Senate vote will, with the new allowance on how to vote, enable me to vote for people I believe will put the nation first.

    • Jody says:

      Abbott was ready to junk Hockey by throwing him under a bus the night before the vote last year. You call that ‘integrity’; then I obviously have a different understanding of the meaning of that word.

  8. Ian MacDougall says:

    Abbott was miles better on free speech (in the sense that lousy is miles better than God-awful); Abbott was better by far, and more trustworthy, on the boats; Abbott was better (not great, but better) on standing up to the renewable energy rent-seekers [!?]; Abbott (and Hockey) were better on trying to cut spending.

    Abbott (and Hockey) were better on trying to avoid raising revenue (campaigning ardently against Gillard’s modest mining tax, which would have given the people of Australia a likewise modest return on the mining boom instead of it passing to foreign shareholders.)
    Abbott was also the far, far more accomplished political liar: “No cuts to education; no cuts to health; no cuts to the ABC… etc.. etc…etc” See https://independentaustralia.net/politics/politics-display/abbott-lies-to-the-nation-to-the-end-65-of-the-worst,8164
    “This seems to be the tally among party leaders over the last 20 years:
    Paul Keating, ALP: 0
    Tim Fischer, Nationals: 0
    Alexander Downer, Liberal: 7
    Kim Beazley, ALP: 0
    John Howard, Liberal: 15+
    John Anderson, Nationals: 0
    Simon Crean, ALP: 0
    Bob Brown, Greens: 0
    Mark Latham, ALP: 0
    Kevin Rudd, ALP: 1
    Mark Vaile, Nationals: 0
    Brendan Nelson, Liberal: 0
    Malcolm Turnbull, Liberal: 0
    Warren Truss, Nationals: 0
    Christine Milne, Greens: 0
    Tony Abbott, Liberal: 30
    Julia Gillard, ALP: 0
    There are two stand-outs in modern history.

    Howard’s tawdry record was already a world-beater” But then came Abbott.

    He seems to have believed that the end justifies the means. An end worthy in his opinion justified by means unworthy in the opinion of most others. Hence his fall.