So Malcolm Turnbull is the new Prime Minister.
That makes five of ‘em in less than five years. And this time the change is made more confusing by the fact that the new PM is probably Labor’s best performing MP, even though he now leads the Liberal Party.
Apparently, Turnbull replaced Abbott because we need a more consultative leadership style in Australia. Funnily enough, the Australian people weren’t consulted on this change.
Apparently, this all happened in the blink of an eye because the government needed to move back to the ‘centre’. Forgive me for being a little sceptical, but if the ‘centre’ is a synonym for the ‘majority’, then it’s pretty clear that Malcolm is not in the middle.
The majority of Australians do not support the ritual slaughter of their leaders in the dead of night. But the blood is being spilt anyway.
In the process, Australians are being told that their votes are pointless. The current circus in Canberra acts like democracy is a waste of time. It’s exactly what you would expect from a bunch of jokers. And it’s clear that the King of the Clowns, Turnbull, thinks that Newspoll reigns over the real poll – the ballot box.
What has happened over the last 24 hours is suicidal lunacy for a ‘party of government’. I’ll get to that in a second.
It was also pure ego, marinated in pure hypocrisy.
The whole shebang started with Turnbull trashing Abbott. And it finished with Turnbull heaping praise on Abbott’s achievements. In between, Turnbull thrust the blade and grabbed the crown in a calculated attack of brutal, treacherous betrayal. If his first words meant anything, his second speech was a sham. And if his final speech was genuine, then the only conclusion that can be drawn is that Turnbull’s attack had little to do with principle and much more to do with self-interest.
In fact, only a self-absorbed, narcissistic shell of a man could claim to be deeply humbled by the occasion while stepping over Abbott’s body in the smiling rush to the media throng. That’s exactly what Turnbull did.
This is the measure of the man.
Turnbull supports homosexual marriage, yet in order to curry favour with his dim-witted colleagues prior to the challenge he gave an assurance that he’d adopt the Liberal Party’s position. After it, he refused to say where he stood. Anyone who believes that Turnbull will honour his commitment when he has already demonstrated so willingly on the walk down the aisle that principle means nothing is deluded.
Turnbull has also claimed that an emissions trading scheme was necessary to save the world and our children’s children. But now he’s like, whatever. And whatever tends to change tomorrow. Just know that when he talks about your children and their future, it’s all hot air. It’s all about him and his future.
It’s not much of a measure. But at least we know that Turnbull’s idea of the middle is more akin to being an indecisive and unprincipled fence-sitter, ready to jump from one side to the other based on what is best for him and his career.
Turnbull’s only ever had one rock-solid policy position: he should be the prime minister. In other words, he believes in politics above principles.
It does not say much for his colleagues or their judgement. They voted for him – to save their seats. Good luck with that.
And as if all of that isn’t going to tick off the Australian public, then Julie Bishop will. As the dust settled and the bodies were carried off, she resorted back to the two party game of mindless, drivelling slogan-slinging. She couldn’t help herself, criticising Labor for being the party of disunity, of going from Rudd to Gillard and back to Rudd again.
Yes. This was at a press conference to announce that the Liberal Party had gone from Turnbull to Abbott and back to Turnbull again.
But enough of the hypocrisy.
Let’s move onto the simple common-sense desire to survive.
If the Rudd-Gillard-Rudd years proved anything, it was that political assassinations are not well received by the public.
The Turnbull-Abbott-Turnbull years will only confirm this.
And just as Rudd would most likely have won a second term, there was every likelihood that Abbott would have as well. Instead, we are going to see more disruption, more instability and more woeful polls.
The new government will not last. The survival instinct has gone.
It’s not that it’s simply missing, but it has been eradicated by self-interest. The politicians in Canberra are so self-absorbed in their own political power plays designed to improve the ‘polling’ that they fail to see that it is these very games that are turning the voters off.
There is no greater example of this than the fact that both Abbott and Turnbull supporters hitting the airwaves last night claimed that they would be voting on what was ‘best for the party’. The entire machines of the major parties are now focused on one thing only: furthering the careers of career politicians. When they say ‘best for the party’, what they really mean is best for themselves.
Whether it’s Liberal or Labor, this mob would scramble back aboard the Titanic if it thought doing so would improve its popularity.
The interests of Australia and its people are a secondary, minor consideration in the corridors of Canberra.
In these circumstances, it can be no surprise at all that we’re no longer voting to put a party into government. Rather, we’re voting to kick them out.
Finally, some words must be said about Abbott. Undoubtedly, his government did do some good. Axing the carbon tax was important. So was stopping the boats. And even I was surprised by his willingness to wear criticism on the issue of marriage.
He might have been weaker than many Australians wanted, but Abbott was not spineless.
But Abbott also failed. The sad reality is that Abbott will probably rue the missed opportunities to be true to himself more than anything else – especially now that they’ve been snatched away for good.
Unfortunately, Abbott has only himself to blame. On the issues where he could have gone hard, gone with principle and gone all the way, he baulked. Failing to scrap section 18C of the Racial Discrimination Act is just one example. It was a huge missed opportunity. Instead, he went politically-correct and decided to keep laws limiting free speech in order to placate the most offended minority of them all – the perpetually outraged Islamic community.
Abbott should have gone so much further than simply stopping the boats. This country needed him to. Instead, he allowed a lack of confidence to undermine all his efforts.
And now that Turnbull – a carbon copy of Rudd – is in power leading the Liberals, there must be serious questions about whether we have actually stopped the boats for good. The pro-republic, pro-multiculturalism, pro-diversity and pro-homosexual marriage Turnbull also happens to think that we should downplay the threat of the Islamic State. In fact, he’s even gone so far as to say that Islam is an ancient religion of great scholarship and that the Islamic community is our best ally in the fight against terrorism.
Thanks, but no thanks, Liberal Party.
Know that we don’t want Turnbull. If we did, we would have just voted his clone, Kevin Rudd, back in at the last election.
And also know that you will pay for this. There’s a good reason why too.
Abbott’s last words as Prime Minister were to claim that the Liberal Party was not the Labor Party.
In electing Turnbull as leader, his colleagues proved him wrong.