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Abbott, Turnbull and Morrison: their achievements (Part one)

We live in a time where horrible things are being perpetrated on us. The shame is that we have normalised them and adjusted accordingly. Our reaction to political corruption or controversy is almost pedestrian.

I say that because no matter how bad this government demonstrates itself to be, people’s attitude toward it doesn’t seem to alter. The polls back up this view.

One would expect that after each fortnight of demonstrably bad governance the polls would reflect it. But they don’t.

One of the oddities of our political polling is trying to understand how 48% of the voting public would willingly return a party that has governed so abysmally.

I find it impossible to imagine that the Australian people would be so gullible as to elect for a third term a government that has performed so miserably in the first two. But they just might.

Most of what is happening in the body politic seems to laconically pass by the general populace. Truth is no longer fashionable and in politics conservatives have overwhelmingly legitimised lying as a genuine political election contrivance.

It’s as though we have reached the point in politics where truth is something that politicians have persuaded us to believe alternative facts rather than truth based on factual evidence, arguments and assertions.

I say all this because my last article somehow found its way onto a Facebook political debating site called Last Watch.

I debated with this group of moronic individuals for much longer than I should have, before terminating the tête-à-tête. The other side was not at all moved with my meticulous truth.

Central to their argument were two points: One, was that I was so biased that I wouldn’t know the truth if I fell over it, and two, that I was just full of shit and I never wrote about the LNP’s achievements.

When I asked for a list that I could refer to, nothing was forthcoming other than more abuse. So I decided, in all fairness, to do some research.

Would they lay claim to the NDIS? “No,” I thought, “they couldn’t.” It was Rudd’s idea and Shorten did the groundwork. On marriage equality, would Morrison claim it even though it had always been a Labor/Greens imitative? And the NBN, they would have run away from.

So where do I go to from here? Trade agreements are one area in which the government has excelled. Agreements with China, Korea, and Japan, followed up with the Trans Pacific Partnership are worthy accomplishments notwithstanding the terms, in some instances, that a Labor government would seek to renegotiate.

This is a matter – if I was going to be honest – that needed serious and thoughtful consideration. After all, I didn’t want to be accused of even a hint of bias.

Needless to say I spent the rest of the day and some of the following putting the list together. A Facebook friend in doing the research assisted me. Anyway, it amounted to a considerable amount of information which necessitated another post. So tomorrow morning I will reveal Abbott, Turnbull and Morrison: their achievements (Part two).

My thought for the day

Less informed voters unfortunately outnumber the more politically aware. Therefore, conservatives feed them all the bullshit they need. And the menu generally contains a fair portion of untruths.

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24 comments

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  1. New England Cocky

    The following are the achievements of the RAbbott Turdball Morriscum Liarbral Notional$ misgovernment that brought you Barnyard Joke and his “National$ Family Values” of Adultery, Alcoholism, Avarice, Bigotry, Croneyism, Deception, Fornication, Hypocrisy, MIsogyny, Philandering, Racism & Water Theft.


    .
    .
    .
    .
    .

    TAMWORTH WOMEN SUPPORTING ADULTERY SUPPORT NATIONAL$

  2. John Lord

    Thanks Cocky. You will have to wait until tomorrow for the full list.

  3. B.D. Branch

    Trouble is Rudd-Gillard-Rudd, with Shorten as the puppeteer, and Shorten with a history of doing dirty deals with multinationals to screw over working class Australia, and…, well we could be here all day, & I’ve got work to go to.

    Voting ALP is like rewarding them for screwing up everything they touched, and sitting back for the opportunity to do it again.
    Don’t like the LNP’s poor performance, cool. Then find a minor party or independent to support, because voting ALP is just saying that you want more of the same appalling performance in a different colour t-shirt.

  4. Pappinbarra Fox

    And that’s NEC’s unbiased list.

  5. Keitha Granville

    When the pollsters ask who will you vote for, and the reply is LNP, the next question should be why.I am totally gobsmacked that there are still so many – are they living in such a level of comfort they truly don’t care about ANYONE else ?

  6. Sandra Searle

    Anyone who is wondering why the polls still favour the LNP? Well, it’s the way the questions have been presented to the the person being polled. It is loaded with bias, pure and simple and it’s going to stay that way while this dreadful govt. is still in power.
    Will it change if the Labor Party get in? Probably not. So it’s up to all of us who want truths to be the order of the day to make sure that we make the MSM do their job properly by investing, questioning (not just parroting each other) and make these idiot politicians accountable by calling them out.

  7. Regional Elder

    John, Great to see you back here writing again.

    It is an irony that some of those Australians who have been in fact been disadvantaged by the LNP’s vigorous policy preferences of favouring the wealthiest 5 %, seem to have internalised those same values, and in turn aggressively defend the status quo. In so doing, and in their repressed resentment, they also tap into the very worst of our anglo settler society in its brutality, its xenophobia, and its conceptual insularity. And the Internet has become their vehicle for hitting out at others.

    A classic case of what Marx called ‘ false consciousness ‘ , where in the Australian case, strongly held plutocratic ideological opinion foisted upon the population, has come to outweigh objectively established truth.

  8. Harry

    True progressives should check out the policies of the RealDemocracyParty. I’m a member. Years ago I was a member of the Labor Party but became disillusioned in the times of Keating and Hawke who adopted Neoliberalism with enthusiasm.

    The Real Democracy Party is informed by MMT principles but it is a micro party that could one day be of influence. In the meantime I will be happy to see the appalling Coalition regime ( does not deserve to be called a government) executed in the polls.

    https://realdemocracyparty.net.au/

  9. Diane Larsen

    Unfortunately so many people seem to have no interest in politics if you bring up the subject the comment is I don’t concern myself with all that or it doesn’t interest me how can this be you ask yourself that something that has a bearing on all our lives holes no interest to so many, they vote because they have to, probably the same way as they voted the first time they show no interest or outrage over what occurs to themselves or others a small whinge if it affects their pocket seems to be the extent of their discontent. The older I get the harder I find it to forgive such polically uneducated uninterested people, it so true you get the government you deserve but sadly those of us who care have to suffer the rabble they vote for

  10. Harry

    Progressives should check out the policies of the RealDemocracyParty. I’m a member. Years ago I was a member of the Labor Party but became disillusioned in the times of Keating and Hawke who adopted Neoliberalism with enthusiasm.

    The Real Democracy Party is informed by MMT principles but it is a micro party that could one day be of influence. In the meantime I will be happy to see the appalling Coalition regime ( does not deserve to be called a government) executed in the polls.

    https://realdemocracyparty.net.au/

  11. Kyran

    By way of observation rather than critique, the metrics being used to validate the premise are, at best, questionable, if not seriously flawed. The resultant assumptions are, therefore, unjustifiable.
    The polls, that seem to be the centre of the universe in political analysis, are so outmoded and unreliable that they are now akin to using a repair manual for an EH Holden to tend to repairs on the CPU of the latest European car.
    The polls are, for the most part, national surveys of 1,000-1,600 people and the questions are usually not specified in the reporting. We don’t know if they are the same people or different people, their circumstance or demographic. The late Bob Ellis regularly had a field day discrediting their validity, let alone relevance. Yet we persist with this presentation of ‘circular reasoning’ as if it is in the slightest bit credible.
    These polls ask about ‘preferred leader’ as if it was something of interest to anyone. Ignoring the critical truth that, even if we did trust one leader over another, the Australian people will never have any say in that position. The parties decide.
    We now have ministries on such a high rotation of occupation that even people with a passing interest in the incumbents have trouble keeping up. Yet these polls are trouped out every fortnight as a reflection of our ignorance rather than a dismal commentary on the woeful state of the Canberran bubble.
    Citing these polls as proof of anything other than their irrelevance is really getting tiresome. How reflective were these polls of the actual outcome of the recent Victorian election? Pre election polling suggested it was going to be close. How did that go?
    We still measure things as 2PP and completely ignore that independents are having more impact. The ‘pox on both your houses’ started, arguably, back with the Democrats. According to MSM, measuring dissent is now confined to counting the votes for such idiocies as hanson or palmer. The truth is that over 25% of us are now likely to vote for independents and we are far more discerning than we are given credit for.
    Anthony Green’s blog has some interesting observations about actual patterns, as opposed to what is regurgitated unquestioningly in MSM.

    https://www.abc.net.au/news/elections/antony-green/3496478

    There was a particularly good analysis done in January and, whilst some of his thinking is based on what used to happen being used to explain what will happen, it at least paid some regard to facts.

    https://www.abc.net.au/news/2019-01-16/independents-wont-matter-as-much-as-you-think-next-election/10716834

    “One would expect that after each fortnight of demonstrably bad governance the polls would reflect it. But they don’t.”
    The Wentworth by election was subjected to every form of spin possible and that spin subsequently got made into fact. There could be no more current indication of a shambles of a government being subjected to a litmus test. ‘Insiders’, on the 28th October, did what they euphemistically called a dissection, which was little more than an exercise in obfuscation, misdirection and distraction.

    https://www.abc.net.au/insiders/sunday-28-october-full-program/10438818

    If you go to the 33 min mark, there is a fascinating breakdown on pre-voting. The overall swing against the Libs was 23%. But there is an analysis of the votes coming in between October 20 and October 25 which is nothing short of mind-blowing, in that it so specifically addresses this myth that we are soooooo stupid, that no matter what these cretins say, we will mindlessly vote the way we always have.
    On October 20, the Libs were polling at 64.4%.
    By October 25, they were at 44.3%.
    Some of the announcements in that time frame were the Israeli embassy (in an electorate with the highest enrolment identifying as Jewish) and even more draconian asylum seeker policy.
    One swallow does not a summer make, and that example is not definitive. But it does at least give some credence to the notion that just because this crap is served up ad nauseam, doesn’t mean it’s true.
    The end result of this constant navel gazing is that the distraction works. We spend endless hours postulating on circular reasoning, rarely questioning the validity of any premises.
    “I debated with this group of moronic individuals for much longer than I should have …..”
    That you would have the slightest inclination to engage in a battle of wits with the witless is akin to discussing Scummo’s Pythonesque protest about his ‘stable government’. All the while the MSM is parading his stable genius, the image of The Black Knight’s performance plays, “Come back. It’s only a flesh wound.”
    As to predictions for your column tomorrow, perhaps the resident soothsayer provided the format on 28th June, 2018. Their achievements are, after all, directly attributable to his cleverness.

    https://theaimn.com/clever-things-that-tony-abbott-has-said/

    The fact that people have little, if any, interest in what our poli’s say or how the media will spin it is not a reflection on us. ‘The Boy who cried Wolf’ comes to mind. That the media insist on calling Wolf every time the Boy cries out is a reflection on them. It is reflected in the collapse of MSM, in terms of both their finances and their following.
    To suggest that that means we have no interest in our own future or can’t smell the roses for all the manure that’s spread is both false and misleading.
    Notwithstanding the tone, for which I apologise, this is not intended as a critique. But we really need to put aside that old repair manual when discussing the latest technologies. This is the information age, and that is terrifying the ignorant.
    Thank you Mr Lord and commenters. Take care

  12. Uta Hannemann

    “I find it impossible to imagine that the Australian people would be so gullible as to elect for a third term a government that has performed so miserably in the first two. But they just might.”
    Yes. they just might. I find it is not that impossible to imagine.

  13. John Lord

    B D Branch. Would you agree that much to what we enjoy today as a society was ignited by Labor.

    Kyran. Thank you for a serious and fair critique. I will apoligise for my answers in advance.

    Diane. “sadly those of us who care have to suffer the rabble they vote for” That is so true.

    Kaye. It is rather scant isn’t isn’t it.

  14. RomeoCharlie29

    Newspoll, being a tool of the Murdoch press, has to try to reflect a situation where the Coalition still has a chance, thus the 2pp result could, at a stretch, be said to be close to statistical margins of error, the generally accepted 2 to 3%. The fact that it frequently, mostly, shows a bigger margin is indicative that even with the built-in biases and shortcomings, they can’t get the coalition to a winning position. That should be the consolation to be taken from polls that appear to consistently show a relatively high level of support for a government that, by any objective standard, has lost all legitimacy and right to govern. At least that’s my hope.

  15. Terence Mills

    John

    Abbott, Turnbull and Morrison: their achievements (Part one).

    That’s a joke, right ? There isn’t a Part Two !

  16. Frank Smith

    Welcome back John! I look forward to Part 2.

    Thanks for your contribution Kyran – it is highly pertinent. I also find these rolling polls quite tedious – it is difficult to know just what they are measuring and how the sample polled really relates to the voting population.The persistent question about “preferred Prime Minister” is particularly galling – as you point out, the voting public never vote for their preferred Prime Minister – the Party Room of the elected Government does that. So, why ask a question that people have no control over at all. As a scientist, I have a pretty good handle on the correct use of statistics, but for the life of me, I cannot fathom out how these pollsters manage to assign a “margin of error” to their results – and without some sort of “confidence limit” any result is pretty meaningless, particularly when the sample size is so small.

    We must not forget the role of the media in shaping peoples perceptions and peddling false information, particularly the Murdoch stable – The UnAustralian, the Daily Telecrap, Courier Mail, Herald Sun. etc. The recent demise of Fairfax and rise of Nine News is only exacerbating the problem. When old bastards like Murdoch can manipulate news to favour a dangerous idiot like Trump, the democracies of countries where News Ltd has an ascendancy is in serious danger.

    https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2019/mar/04/fox-news-stormy-daniels-rupert-murdoch-trump-win

  17. Alcibiades

    Frank Smith

    When old bastards like Murdoch can manipulate news to favour a dangerous idiot like Trump, the democracies of countries where News Ltd has an ascendancy is in serious danger.

    As usual the Guardian omits much whilst striving for the clickbait headline.

    May one recommend a long form, in depth, investigative piece with analysis of the consequences of what Murdoch has so far achieved :

    The Making of the Fox News White House
    Fox News has always been partisan. But has it become propaganda? :- The New Yorker

    Has much relevance for our own shallow democracy in Australia & News Ltds role in it.

  18. OldWomBat

    In terms of achievements, that is positive ones, I’m surprised that there are enough to get more than half a line of print.

  19. helvityni

    John Lord, your thought for the day says it all for me…at times I despair: what kind of country does Oz want to be seen as….? Progressive, egalitarian , compassionate…? We have to educate the masses….

  20. Phil.

    Another good read John. If the electoral Gods are not with us at the next election, Morrison will complete his agenda.
    That agenda being, the Americanisation of our social welfare system and the full privatisation of our health service.
    Australians are well known for their ‘ I’m alright Jack ‘ mentality. Besides the football season is upon us, the bottle
    shops are open and the world turns. How to get a fire under the arse of the working class is, one of those unsolvable
    conundrums. When I watch the news reporting Australia is on fire and then read comments on social media that
    ‘Global Warming ‘ is crap I believe, unless something catastrophic happens, we will keep muddling our way through
    into the Abyss.

  21. Kronomex

    https://www.smh.com.au/politics/federal/tony-abbott-to-recruit-20-interns-to-learn-the-art-of-political-campaigning-in-fight-for-warringah-20190305-p511ug.html

    “”While details are still being finalised, the Liberal Party is founded on volunteerism and the programme will operate in a manner similar to other campaign exchanges run by all political parties,” Mr Abbott’s spokesman said.”

    Translated means: “The LNP is pretty much broke and I’m certainly not using any of MY money to pay for you lot of idiots who are going to be worked into the ground by me.”

    To paraphrase a couple of lines from Black Sabbath’s song Electric Funeral:

    Robot minds of robot slaves
    Lead them to LNP graves

    On a completely unrelated note: have a look at the shot of Roger Stone at the top of article then try and convince me that is a photo of a sane man.

    https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/live/2019/mar/04/democrats-president-2020-trump-latest-news-live

  22. andy56

    I sent an email to scott regarding australian funding to NEWSGUARD. No email in return but i did get a letter. It says thanks for the question but it left me rather angry. No where in the letter do they answer my question. They fobbed me off on some other discource about regional media and jobs innovation fund. NO FUCKING MENTION of the question i asked.
    So the cat is out of the bag, they either dont know their portfolios or are blatant liars. Lying by omission is still a bloody lie.
    So if the powers that be here are having a slack day, NEWSGUARD may be an interesting story to follow up.

  23. New England Cocky

    @RomeoCharlie 29: Having done a little statistics gathering when a student, it is surprising how regular the results become when you poll the same group of individuals every sample date.

    Once you have established the necessary group of sycophants, you continue to poll them as ” a longitudinal study” to justify the sameness of the results across time.

    This works particularly well when you then introduce bias into the methodology by excluding any fresh persons from the general population who are likely to hold differing opinions, for whatever reason.

    Now you report the results from this group of sycophants as THE OPINION HELD BY THE ENTIRE POPULATION, WHICH IT IS NOT.

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