Election 2022: Prospects for a New Multidimensional Era?

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A New Start: The 2022 Election

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Australian Disinformation Wonderland: The Federal Election 2022

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An emboldened Scott Morrison would be a disaster for Australia. A vote…

Teal Revolutions and the Crisis of the Liberal…

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Rossleigh is a writer, director and teacher. As a writer, his plays include “The Charles Manson Variety Hour”, “Pastiche”, “Snap!”, “That’s Me In The Distance”, “48 Hours (without Eddie Murphy)”, and “A King of Infinite Space”. His acting credits include “Pinor Noir Noir” for “Short and Sweet” and carrying the coffin in “The Slap”. His ten minutes play, “Y” won the 2013 Crash Test Drama Final.

Final Thoughts After The Long, Long Campaign…

When Morrison started campaigning in 2019, most people expected him to lose. Even more people expected him to stop campaigning after the election, at least for a few weeks. But Scotty being Scotty, he couldn’t afford to stop apart from a brief holiday in Hawaii.

I guess that’s what he found so perplexing when he copped all that flack about: the next election is ages away and if I don’t take a break now, when will I get the chance? I mean, it’s not like I can actually do anything to help. When told that Prime Ministers normally did things like go to the affected area and offer moral support he was off before you could say photo opportunity. Unfortunately, he wasn’t prepared for the video showing him forcing someone’s hand into his: it was meant to be a still shot and we’re out of here!

The fear for me is that Morrison is like Covid. It was a terrible thing that upset lives and people just didn’t know. how to deal with it, so after the horror of all the ways it changed what we perceived as normality, a lot of people decided that the best thing to do was ignore it and hope it didn’t affect them personally.

The Coalition government – which stretches back to 2013, no matter how Morrison tries to tell us that they’re just warming up and good government starts next term – have made so many mistakes that the election will be over by the time I list them. Yet somehow they manage to obscure what they’ve done by talking about Labor.

Take Robodebt! The various defenders suggest that the practice of income averaging had been around for thirty years. This is true, but in the past, it was just a way of identifying which people needed to be examined more closely. This would be like the police getting a description of a suspect, then arresting the first person they found over 190cm tall with brown hair and holding them in custody until they could prove their innocence, and then arguing that all police use descriptions to identify suspects.

Yet after Robodebt, Morrison was happy to assert that Christian Porter was “an innocent man” because of the well-accepted idea of the presumption of innocence. Of course, Mr Porter is entitled to this presumption, just as those receiving Robodebt letters were.

Tomorrow people will be voting and the polls are tightening and I know that a lot of people are thinking, “We’ve seen this movie before and we find it all a bit too predictable and silly. I mean, why does that person run into the one place where there’s no help?”

So, here we are again. Last time Labor were ahead in the polls and the betting markets. The party that was elected to get debt and deficit under control have doubled the debt and have produced nothing but deficits, but wait: Good news! Next year we’re back in black. Awesome, we told you we were good economic managers.

This time we have a similar scenario, except that it’s unemployment that’s the good news. It has a three in front of it and businesses can’t get enough workers. See, we’re the good economic managers! Let’s ignore the fact that a shortage of workers is a sign of inefficiencies in the economy, just like a shortage of jobs is, but let’s ignore that because look, Labor are going to add $7 billion to the one trillion we’ve racked up. Fiscally irresponsible and you’ll all be broke.

I could point out here that this is the equivalent of me getting very upset with my partner and calling her fiscally irresponsible when she puts two coffees on the credit card after I’ve just spent a thousand dollars on a guitar because I thought I’d like to learn to play one day.

However, I suspect that at least some people are more cynical. I suspect that at least some people are more concerned with the cost of living. I suspect that at least some people understand that the person they thought was a daggy dad is really a snake-oil salesman who turns around and says that he isn’t delivering what you paid for because it wasn’t what you thought it was. I’m thinking integrity commission here, where Morrison promised one, but constantly calls ICAC a kangaroo court which ruins reputations of people by asking them questions publicly and how is that fair when all they’ve done is lie to the public and use taxpayer funds in ways that people would find dodgy. Totally unfair.

Much has been made of the fact that Morrison has steered clear of the so-called moderates and the suggestion has been that he realises that he’s electoral poison in those places, but there is an alternative possibility: He actually believes in miracles and he doesn’t care about these electorates, believing that God will deliver the seats he needs with candidates like Katherine Deves. Actually, after Scotty bulldozed that kid (“fault on both sides” according to Stuart Robert), did anyone ask her if she has a view on men playing sport against little children or is it only transgender people that she has a problem with?

Whatever worries Labor voters may have, they should rest assured after Morrison told us that he didn’t introduce the integrity commission legislation because Labor opposed it. On that basis, it seems that whoever wins the election the only legislation brought before parliament will be things that Labor supports!

 

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Take The PM To The April Sun In Cuba…

Recently I received a letter from John Howard telling me that he’d known Josh Frydenberg for twenty years and what a great chap he is and how intelligent and hard working he is. It was like one of those references you write when you don’t know the person very well but you know them well enough that it’s hard to refuse so you resort to generalities because you can’t remember anything specific that they’ve done.

It went on to tell me that if I vote for an independent there’s a chance that Josh won’t be elected. Imagine that, a former PM thinking that the electorate is so stupid that they might not understand that the person they vote for might be elected and that they certainly aren’t voting for them in the hope that they actually are.

Still it is Kooyong. You know the seat that Menzies held. I read recently that his 93 year-old daughter would hate to die with someone other than a Liberal in the seat. Well, there’s an easy way to stop that happening… But did whoever reported that story think that someone would say, «People sleeping in their cars, but I’d hate to risk electing a different government because that poor daughter of Menzies would be unhappy.! »

Anyway, I’m led to believe that the polls are tightening and this is giving Labor votes a sense of déjà-vu. I’ll wait and see and not tempt fate too much but remember that there are more young people voting in this election because they’ve turned 18. And I have a sneaky suspicion that they’ll be more concerned about climate change than Menzies’ daughter and John Howard’s references.

When younger people are doing parodies like this, I suspect that Morrison won’t limp over the line again.

April Sun

 

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The Morrison Men And The Little Lady To Whom I Owe Such Excellent Descriptions!

“My wife says that I’m far too modest and that I should remind people of what a great fixer I am. I would never do that because that would sound like I was boasting, but she says that I shouldn’t ever forget that I’m one of the Morrison men and that I’m a fixer. Like Christopher Pyne, we’re fixers. My father used to be in the NSW police and he was good at fixing things because that’s what police do. And my brother is a paramedic and if they see something broken, they fix it. And I’m the PM and I’ve fixed a lot of stuff. I fixed it so that my candidates were the ones selected in NSW. and, if I get my way, I’ll fix it so that all the candidates agree with me…”

I think I got the gist of it. I don’t refer to notes and I do everything from memory which is apparently a much better thing to do than get it right. I mean, look at the kerfuffle the other day when Albo got out his notes on the NDIS because he couldn’t remember the six points off the top of his head at a press conference that wasn’t even about the NDIS.

Scott Morrison always relies on memory which is so much better. Not only does he remember some of the questions before they’re asked but he also can remember things that never happened, such as his praise for electric cars in the 2019 election campaign and all the things he’s done for women and bushfire victims.

Speaking of the devil, the official Liberal campaign launch was yesterday which seems rather strange given there was less than six days till the election. Of course, some cynical person suggested that it might be that until the campaign is officially launched then ministers and staff can charge travel to the taxpayer rather than the party, but surely that couldn’t be the reason.

No, as Scott said in his fiery, revivalist-type speech yesterday, “I’m just warming up.” Of course, this is a bit like suggesting that the grand final be replayed because it took you until the final quarter before you’d finished your stretches and you were now ready to actually start playing, so how about we forget all the mistakes and fumbles and we start from scratch and play another quarter.

Scott re-affirmed his need to change gears because he’d been a bit too much of a bulldozer in his approach because of the need to get things done. And yes, who can forget the way he bulldozed the vaccine rollout, insisting that it wasn’t a race because all those other countries with their Formula-1s would leave a bulldozer for dead… Just as he left many Australians who didn’t get the vaccine in time.

Jane Hume backed his capacity to change gears letting everyone know that while he may have been a little unused to the clutch having spent so much time with an automatic, he’d smoothed out his action and he knew to move through the gears slowly and wait until he was on the highway before hitting top.

As the warm-up comedian, Josh came out with the side-splitting line, “I wish I got this sort of reception in Kooyong.” This, apparently, was a reference to the close contest in his electorate where he’d assured us just days ago that people were coming up to him and telling him what a great job he was doing. I must, therefore, infer that he doesn’t like the voters talking to him and wishes that they would simply give him a standing ovation like the Liberal faithful.

Of course, when I say “the Liberal faithful” I mean all those at the party launch, not just the ministers who aren’t cheating on their partners. And anyway, if a tree falls in the forest and nobody reports it, did it really happen?

Anyway, I’d have to say that their pitch on housing certainly appeals to all those who are unable to save for a deposit. Taking $50,000 out of your superannuation account is something that will appeal to all those who are either struggling to save and who don’t see any way that they’ll survive till they’re old enough to access their super. It’s even more appealing to those who don’t realise that the catch is that to get the full $50k you need to actually have over $125,000 in your super account, because it’s a maximum of 40%, but maybe they’ll fix that by telling people that you can borrow the $50,000 against future super contributions. The beauty of this scheme is that it will help keep house prices high which is one way of ensuring that the retirement income of all the MPs who own several investment properties isn’t eroded by people’s inability to go hopelessly into debt.

Leaving aside everything that they’ve done or haven’t done, the Liberals have a pretty impressive pitch which is basically just that: Leave aside everything we’ve done or haven’t done and re-elect us because we can change, but don’t elect Labor because change would be risky at a time like this.

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Albanese Slammed For Being A Loose Unit By PM Whose Deputy Is Barnaby Joyce!

Sometimes you just have to lay out what’s being said to sound like you’ve just written a script that sounds like you’re channelling the late John Clarke.

For example, we’re told Anthony Albanese is a risk because he’s never held an economic portfolio. The role of Prime Minister demands a strong economic understanding of economics. But, argue Labor, Anthony Albanese was once Deputy PM. This, according to the Liberals, has nothing to do with economics and it’s only the PM who is involved in the economics of the day,.. along with the economic portfolios ministers which include things like Treasury, Finance, and Trade but not Infrastructure because Albanese held that one.

Of course, the fact that our current Deputy PM is Barnaby Joyce, who rose to such lofty heights at his NPC address this week that he got nose bleed (seriously!), does suggest that it is possible for the Liberals to argue that the Deputy is kept away from economic matters and sharp objects as much as possible.

And of course, this does raise the interesting question of a Peter Dutton led Opposition being unfit for government on the grounds that Petey has also never held an economic ministry. Or will Border Force, Health or Defence all suddenly be economic in nature.

Whatever, we also had the rather strange position of Anne Ruston on Katherine Deves. While I note that this not the only strange position that Liberals have been in, mentioning certain others could leave one open to legal action and I don’t have a spare half million lying around, but let’s stick with Anne for the moment.

I hope nobody is going to take offence for me referring to a federal minister by her first name, but it seems to be what one does when talking about a woman. Scotty does it all the time and, let’s be clear here, Anne is such a warm, caring sort of person that I almost feel like she’s a mate and if you can’t call mates by their first name, well, what’s happening to the Australia I grew up in?

Anne was asked by Patricia Karvelas – or PK, as she’s known to many – about Katherine Deves front page interview in the SMH. Her response… and I may have got this slightly wrong because I’m writing from memory and memory can be faulty, as the PM shows every time he’s asked about some past statement which doesn’t suit his present position, so if I get it slightly wrong, then I never said anything like the thing I said and you just thought that I meant something that I didn’t… Her response was something along the lines of it’s not clear whether Deves had permission to do the interview but whether she did or not, Ruston doesn’t agree with her and she doesn’t have to agree with everything every Liberal candidate says because, people have different opinions and it’s just that we happen to be in the same party and it’s up to her to explain herself but vote Liberal whatever anyone says because even if disagree about some issues when it comes down to it, we’re at least a credible, united government unlike the chaos that could occur if you have independents who’ll all vote as a block and put Albanese into power and then we’ll have interest rate rises.

Which, apparently, is both a problem AND a sign that the economy is doing well and we no longer need the emergency level interest rates.

Yes, whatever one thinks about Albo’s support for a minimum wage rise that keeps pace with inflation, it’s hard to follow the Morrison line that we don’t want people left behind but we can’t afford for them to keep up even though our economy is doing better than anywhere in the world.

Maybe it’s just me but I found the Liberal’s “There’s a hole in the bucket” ad quite confusing. It was suggesting that Labor wouldn’t be able to pay for its promises and would run deficits. This might be a touch more convincing were it not for the fact that while Labor may not have delivered a surplus for over thirty years, the Liberals haven’t delivered one for over fifteen years and they have no projections that deliver one in the life of the next parliament. So we’re being asked to choose between a Labor deficit and a Liberal deficit. Except the Liberal ad then asserts – even though Labor have consistently ruled it out – that Labor will raise taxes. Leaving aside everything to do with Labor’s promise not raise taxes, doesn’t the fact that they’ll attempt to balance the budget by raising revenue suggest that they’re the more fiscally responsible ones? All right, most people don’t actually want to pay more tax so it’s a populist move to suggest that the other side will make you, but surely it’s irresponsible – when we’ve got deficits and debt – to not worry about balancing the books?

Or are the Liberals planning a massive cut in spending on things like health and education. You know, the things that don’t matter.

Ah, it’s Friday the 13th. I’d stay away from ladders today if I were Scotty from Photo Ops.

 

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Frydenberg May Yet Be Lazarus With A Triple Bypass Just Like Howard…

One of John Howard’s more famous quotes was, when asked about whether he’d contest the leadership after John Hewson lost in 1993, “That would be like Lazarus with a triple bypass.”

Lazarus, for all you heathens, was someone that Jesus raised from the dead, so Howard was suggesting that to become leader again, he’d need both a miracle AND all the benefits of modern medicine.

It remains the only recorded witty thing that Howard ever said.

But moving on, I have to tell you what’s going to happen and that you need to remember that you heard it here first…

Of course, when I tell you what’s going to happen, I have to point out that predictions are often wrong for the simple reason that they rely on the expectation that the future will – in some ways – take all its inspiration from the past. I mean, it usually does. That’s why it’s easy to predict things like the sun will rise, storm clouds will bring rain, Andrew Bolt will say something so stupid it’s not worth commenting on but lots of people will comment on it nonetheless, Scott Morrison will contradict himself and no political party should ever endorse anyone named Tim.

So with all that in mind, I’m going out on a limb and tell you about a rumour that I’m just making up so if I’m suddenly arrested and forced to reveal my sources, I’m going to name the next Liberal to annoy me.

This is in five parts:

  1. The Liberals lose the election.
  2. Josh loses Kooyong.
  3. Scott Morrison decides that he’d rather run Hillsong and leaves Parliament leading to a by-election in the seat of Cook.
  4. Josh is parachuted into the seat in order to become Liberal leader after the next one fails. He tells the people of Cook that he’s always thought that NSW is a much better place to live.
  5. Mm, I had a fifth point but I can’t remember it off the top of my head and if I check my notes, then I’m unfit to ever be PM and we’ll just have to leave it to Josh and I won’t be able to form a new party because I couldn’t name all 500 members and their birthdays before the buzzer told me time was up.

On a serious note, I’d like to say that if the following does become a rumour, then that says a lot about what’s wrong with everything in politics and the media today.

If it becomes a reality, then I should get a Walkley…

Actually even if it doesn’t, because I’m just so awesome. I’m so much better than anyone else and I’m just so good. I’m an adult, you know and …

Oh sorry, I thought people like that sort of thing. I mean, some of them keep voting for Liberal governments when all they do is tell us that they are so much better than the Labor alternative because… well, they have managed to reduce the deficit from where they took it to, to where it is.

sigh<

 

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Keep Josh? Will JoshKeeper Work?

Back in January of this year, Josh Frydenberg was telling us:

“With $424 billion accumulated on household and business balance sheets since the pandemic began, there is now a war chest of private sector savings to support Australia’s economic recovery, With tax cuts boosting savings, falling unemployment, a strong pipeline of business investment and one of the highest vaccination rates in the world, Australians have every reason to be confident about the year ahead.”

That was before all that demand led to inflation and the Reserve Bank increasing interest rates. Of course, when I say that it was demand that caused inflation, there’s a bit of debate about that. And when I say debate what I mean is that the government is unable to get their story straight. You see, interest rates are being caused by overseas factors like the Russians invading Ukraine and they’re really nothing to do with the government… except I have noticed the odd Liberal ad telling us that average interest rates were higher under Labor than they’ve been under Liberals. I guess this means that Labor is responsible for interest rates when they’re in power, but Scott Morrison is responsible for nothing when he’s in power because anything that isn’t Labor’s fault is someone else’s job.

But back to Josh. He’s a very worried man. I mean, why else would he agree to debate an independent in his seat. Not that isn’t a nice idea. The Treasurer taking time from his busy schedule to debate someone who has no hope of forming government. Or rather, no hope of being part of the government. There’s still a chance that the independents will play a large part in the forming of the next government.

This has led to a lot of people screeching about the need for the independents declaring who they’ll support in the event of a hung parliament. This has also led to people using the phrase “so-called teal independents” when referring to them. I presume this must be about the colour because it’s really more turquoise, so the “so-called teal” is an attempt to point out their colour blindness.

As far as the need for the declaration of support goes, this is quite interesting. I can’t recall anyone standing as an independent in previous elections being asked to do the same. Neither do the Liberals demand that the Greens, PHON or UAP tell us who they’ll support after the election if they by some miracle – which Scotty believes in, by the way – should hold the balance of power. Surely their decision would depend on such things as what part of their agenda either of the major parties was prepared to support, as well as which party was best placed to get legislation through. I mean, if one party is two seats short of a majority, then it’s a lot easier to support them than one who needs the support of every independent to pass bills.

This is quite strange when the Liberals and the Nationals tell us that their coalition agreement is a secret and we can’t know the details, but surely we need to know – before the election – under what conditions the agreement would break down.

Ok, pretty much the Liberals doing anything positive about climate change. The Nationals agreed to committing to net-zero by 2050 so long as we do nothing about it until someone else is in government. As far as the “technology not taxes” slogan goes, I wonder if any of you noticed this little contraction from Jane Hume on Radio National the other day:

Patricia Karvelas: They may not have to buy them (carbon offsets), Labor says, there may be technology opportunities.

Jane Hume: And that will cost businesses and that’s why it’s been referred to as a sneaky tax.

So technology will cost and it’ll be the equivalent of a “sneaky tax”. But only under Labor apparently.

Anyway, it seems like we’ve had a few major blunders by those facing the independents. The hardest thing about getting votes in an election is letting people you know that you exist and what you stand for. How many people would have been aware that Zoe Daniel was even standing if it weren’t for Timmy Willson’s dummy spit about the signs?

Similarly, I suspect that Josh thought that by debating Monique Ryan, he’d be able to impress people with his superior qualities. Leaving aside the terrible hubris of that, the simple fact is that giving an Independent any publicity is a poor strategic move. As I wrote the other day, if Scott Morrison were to say under no circumstances should you vote for Person X, you’ve probably just delivered them several thousand people wanting to vote for them before they even know what Person X stands for.

I was checking the betting markets on some of the individual seats. Not because I was planning to bet on them, but to get a better idea on reality. While it’s true that the polls and the markets got 2019 wrong, at least we know that the betting markets are trying not to lose their money so they don’t offer good odds on things that they think are highly likely. I notice that a number of seats that are being touted by the political pundits as a “close race” have, in fact, Labor as close to a certainty in terms of odds. The ones that are too close to call are the ones that would give Labor a comprehensive victory.

I know that this isn’t foolproof, but I find it interesting that the betting market I looked at had the independent (Georgia Steele) as the slight favourite in Craig Kelly’s old seat of Hughes.

Whatever, it’s going to be a long fortnight.

 

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Morrison Has A Vision Of A Chicken!

Why did the chicken cross the road?”

“It didn’t – it was just the light shining off its skin…”

If you haven’t caught up with the saga of Morrison and the raw chicken, it’s possibly the most important story of the election campaign and I wonder how he’ll recover from this gaffe…

Oh, ok, it’s not really that important but I’d thought that I’d build it up a bit because… well, if I’m ever going to get a job as political reporter for the Murdoch media I need to build my skills in hyperbole.

Speaking of hyperbole, I just loved Andrew Bolt’s complaint that Labor’s promise to build more EV charging stations was just helping out rich people charge their Teslas. Apart from the obvious ‘politics of envy” which he abuses people with whenever they complain about inequality, I wonder if he realises that there are many more options for EVs than Tesla these days.

But back to the evolving story of Morrison and the chicken. After a difficult week, Morrison likes to unwind and demonstrate his human side by showing us photos of the curry he’s cooked. We see the ingredients professionally laid out and we sometimes see him doing a selfie over the stove. We are meant to see this as him taking a break from his work and just relaxing. We’re not meant to be cynical and suggest that the only job he ever does is PR and this just more or the same because to do so would be very cynical indeed.

With the most recent shot, however, there was a minor problem. Someone pointed out that the chicken looked raw. Sometimes the best way to avoid being caught lying is to simply say nothing and hope nobody notices that there’s an unanswered question floating around. However, Morrison went full Colonel Jessop with his: “You want the truth? I CAN’T HANDLE THE TRUTH!”, telling us that it was just the way that the light was bouncing off the skin of the chicken.

Mm, two problems here;

  1. A few people who were in the habit of cooking curries said that the picture appeared to be one of a chicken dish being marinated in yoghurt and garlic and that it wasn’t meant to be cooked at the time the photo was taken.
  2. The chicken piece was skinless.

Now this is a truly petty and trivial thing. I mean, who cares about the Prime Minister’s curries? Certainly not Jen and the girls. Josh Frydenberg might because they did share time at The Lodge where Josh washed and he dried… Or was it the other way around? Anyway, I wouldn’t bring up The Lodge with Josh at the moment because apparently he’s a bit touchy about the fact that this may be the closest he gets to it.

Anyway, leaving the touchiness of the Treasurer on certain subjects aside, it does make one wonder why on earth the Prime Modeller can’t simply point out that the chicken was raw because it hadn’t been cooked yet… Unlike himself and his Lodge buddy.

It’s almost like he didn’t know. It’s almost like he didn’t cook it. It’s almost like the whole thing was a bigger sham than his government.

Which reminds me… I noticed on Twitter that Frydenberg had a meme about Healthcare and it was in a colour that resembled the wonderful purple of the Australian Electoral Commission. I wondered if he had a version of it in Chinese telling people that the only way to vote was to put a “1” beside his name. I guess I’m allowed to ask that or will that – like any questions about Gladys Lui – be deemed racist. And, after all, the AEC doesn’t own the colour purple… Although I do believe there’s a shade that Cadbury have copyrighted so Josh better be careful.

 

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Independent ABC Must Declare Who They’ll Side With After The Election!

At this point, I’m wondering exactly how many people will comment on the title without reading what I actually write. I imagine at least one person will write: “You idiot, the ABC are INDEPENDENT and won’t be siding with anyone!”

Which is sort of my point. I don’t know about anyone else but when I hear an ABC journalist asking one of the “Voices of” candidates who they’ll be supporting in the event of a hung parliament, I want them to say that because they’re independent they can wait and see – but given that both parties strongly support climate change action and an integrity commission, we’ll wait and see which party proposes the best way to make that happen with actual legislation AFTER the election. If the journalist persists and suggests that they can’t claim to truly be independent because they won’t declare who they’re siding with, they should reply with something along the lines of why the ABC is claiming to be independent when they won’t tell us who they’re siding with.

Yes, it would be quite silly but just about everything that the media are doing is quite silly.

I mean, Albanese does an in-depth profile on his life and the media complain that Labor are a small target and aren’t releasing policies. Then Labor release policy and the media talk about how we don’t know who Anthony Albanese is. Then we’re treated to a detailed discussion of who the various journalists think will win the election followed by a discussion of the preferred PM and how this is somehow significant.

How often is the Opposition leader the preferred PM? Was Tony Abbott?

Then, when discussing things like Albanese’s disapproval rating, they completely ignore the fact that at least part of that figure includes people who disapprove because he hasn’t attacked the government enough and wouldn’t vote for the Liberal candidate if it were a choice between them and Clive Palmer.

So it’s pretty clear that the independents have certain candidates more worried about them than the Labor Party which is why I find their whole strategy about as clever as Barnaby Joyce running on a platform of: “I’m so into family values that I have two families.” The first difficulty any independent has is getting noticed. If I were to run in Kooyong, I’d be lucky to attract a handful of votes but if Josh were to say publicly that you shouldn’t vote for me, I’d probably get more votes than if he ignored me.

Similarly, Timmy Wilson’s dummy spit about Zoe Daniel’s signs means that I know who’s the “Voices Of” candidate for Goldstein even though I’m not in that electorate.

Let’s be real, it’s thanks to the Libs that Monique Ryan is being interviewed here, there and everywhere. It’s thanks to the Libs that a large number of the people in the endangered electorates know who the teal candidate is and what they stand for.

I haven’t seen incompetence like that since Frydenberg suddenly realised that his figures were out by $60 billion but that’s ok because it was $60 billion less so let’s all have a party. As for the campaign decision to put posters about a strong economy on shops that have gone out of business, one has to wonder whether that’s a case of irony or whether it’s the fact that even his own party want him to lose.

And still, Josh doesn’t get it. His announcement that Monique Ryan’s mother-in-law told him that she’d vote for him may go down a treat at Liberal functions but take a step back and consider how it plays in the wider community.

For a start, one has to ask if he took any steps to ascertain that it was, in fact, a relation of “that fake independent”. I mean, I’m pretty sure that nobody would be irresponsible enough to quote me if I were to say that I was Josh’s best friend from childhood and that I was voting for Monique without first checking with him. But even if I was, so what? I mean, has anybody checked how Barnaby’s ex-wife is planning to vote this election?

Yes, that’s right – families are meant to be off-limits. But in any case, how desperate must he be that he thinks that he needs this? I know that his justification was that Rob Baillieu was working for Monique Ryan, but I’d argue that there’s a difference between someone who makes a public statement and someone who tells you who they’re intending to vote for. After all, I frequently tell people who bail me up in the street during election campaigns that I’m voting for their candidate even though I’m not. Just as I tell Jehovah’s Witnesses who come to the door that I’m a Satanist looking for a virgin to sacrifice and if they know any…

It saves a long conversation that won’t result in anything positive for anyone.

But when it comes to the idea that somehow what one’s mother-in-law thinks…

I mean that’s about as relevant as we should vote Josh back because he’s a real nice guy… who likes bringing relatives into the campaign but families are off-limits.

Anyway, I started composing a list of things to ask which were reasonable and which were unreasonable. What do you reckon about the following?

  • Person told that they did well in the job interview and the references all checked out, but the job is going to someone else because the boss bumped into the person’s mother-in-law who said that they were a bit sloppy round the house.
  • Art student announces that they will vote for Josh because he can’t trust the Independent candidates owing to the fact that they’re claiming that they dress in teal when the colour is “turquoise”.
  • Politician visits nursing home where resident says that he’ll definitely be voting for him/her because they don’t want Peter Costello to become PM and that Kevin07 is a great slogan. They tell everyone that John Howard has endorsed them because the man insisted that he was.
  • Man tells his wife that she’s wrong because his mistress tells him that he’s really great in bed and that’s the reason she’s with him and not because of the car he bought her.
  • Jane Hume tells Patricia Karvelas that Labor have the equivalent of a carbon tax because even if businesses use technology to offset Labor’s policy that will add to costs and doesn’t mention the Liberal policy is the slogan, “Technology not taxes”!
  • Murdoch paper runs story showing candidate for election with happy family with lots of photos of father happily playing with kids. Should people vote this person out of office so that he doesn’t miss the best years of his kids’ life?
  • Pauline Hanson insists that she is Pauline Hanson and nobody has a right to tell her that she can’t do anything she wants and it’s all wrong since it was her who gave the ignorant a voice and now there are so many choices that she may not get elected again.

I could go on, but I’m not sure that Josh can.

 

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STRONG Economic Management And How We Take It For Granted…

Today Scott Morrison made an announcement on what the government was intending to do if re-elected:

Millions of Australians will soon save $10 per script for common medications, which means those taking one medication a month could save $120 a year, or those taking two medications a month could save $240 a year.

“Because of our strong economic management, the Coalition is winding the clock back on the cost of medications, reducing the cost per script to 2008 prices.”

Now one of the troubles with being an incumbent government is that people eventually start to pick fault with things even if they’re a good idea. “Why didn’t you do it earlier?” is a common response and to a certain extent that’s unfair because nobody can do everything all at once. However, it’s also a legitimate question, particularly when a government is saying what an excellent idea it is. If it’s so good, why wasn’t it one of your first priorities and why is it only being trotted it in an election campaign?

Notwithstanding all that, I wonder how many people noticed the way, Slippery Scotty just inserted one of the great myths of Australian politics: The superiority of the Liberals’ economic management.

I’m sure that there’ll be saying but Labor always spend too much and create debt and cause global share markets to crash and… Look, Labor just can’t manage money.

Which brings me back to Morrison’s statement about strong economic management. Because of it, he tells us, they are “winding the clock back on the cost of medications” and that we’ll have 2008 prices… Wow, isn’t that impressive?

Except for one little detail which nobody picked him up on: What the hell does he mean by “strong economic management”? I mean, his party has presided over an increase in debt to the point that it’s about to hit one trillion dollars which – to give you some perspective: If God had put a thousand dollars aside every day for Jesus to spend at the second coming, he still wouldn’t have hit the trillion dollar mark. As for the actual budget, well, it’s not in surplus and there’s no plan to have it in surplus because, like just about every problem the government sees, there’s nothing that they can do about it. It’s outside their control and they don’t hold a hose.

If a trillion dollar debt and an inability to get the budget back to surplus is STRONG economic management, what does weak economic management look like?

I envisage Labor saying that they’ll match this promise only to have some journalist ask them to tell us where the money is coming from.

Economic management – it seems – means that the Liberals can manage to get away with not being held to account on the subject of the economy because if they propose something then it must be good economics. Just like when Josh Frydenberg tells us that low unemployment is the result of the government but high prices and low wages are nothing to do with them,

And speaking of Josh…

Josh attacks the independents as fake independents at every opportunity and suggests that they are actually a party. This is quite interesting as a line of attack and seems to suggest that the idea of being part of a party is somehow wrong. I mean, while they might all be in favour of action on climate change and an integrity commission, they don’t function like a party and we could have a long debate about this, but I think there’s a stranger subtext. If, for the sake of argument, one of them said, “Yes, we are but aren’t the people criticising us also a party and don’t they have members of their party calling net zero dead so which party do people want?”

Driving around Kooyong over the past few days, it’s hard to miss enormous portable billboards on the back of trucks with Josh’s beaming face and the words “Strong economy”… They’ve cut back on the three word slogans in the interests of economy.

But I couldn’t help wonder why Josh is getting large trucks. When I ventured out this morning there was a very small car with signs encouraging us to vote for Gladys Lui.

I mean, it does seem a bit unfair. Josh gets a big truck and she gets a small car… Is this merit or just because he’s the Treasurer? Or is it because the Liberals have given up on Chisholm?

Ah well, in 21 days we’ll discover how close it really is.

 

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But The Interest Rate Rise Is Labor’s Fault!!

“Beer?”

“No, I’m not drinking.”

“Yeah, these cost of living pressures are a real problem. I can’t see how Morrison can possibly win the election if the interest rates go up next week.”

“Now hang on mate, that’s not his fault. I had a long chat with my local member the other day when he gave me a bag full of goodies and asked if I had any questions?”

“And did you?”

“Did I what?”

“Have any questions?”

“No, I just thanked him for the bag because I thought it would seem ungrateful to ask him anything. I said something about how great it was that unemployment had reached the point where businesses were crying out for workers and he told me that it was both a good thing and a bad thing.”

“How so?”

“Well, he explained it all in great detail. His party is the party of small government and the low unemployment is a good thing because it’s a direct result of their economic plan where they stand back and do nothing and let the market sort it out, but it’s a bad thing because it puts upward pressure on wages and with rising inflation the last thing we want is wages to drive up costs.”

“But don’t people need higher wages to help with the higher prices?”

“Yeah, but that’s not the government’s problem. Or rather it’s not their job. Their job is to ensure that the economy runs smoothly and the best way of ensuring that it to ensure that business has the best conditions to prosper.”

“I see. So what are they going to do about inflation?”

“Well, nothing. Inflation’s not their fault so they can’t be worried about anything that’s not their fault. No, what the government needs to do is to step back and let the market sort it out..”

“I see. But then why do we need a government?”

“Well, to make sure that unions don’t run rampart and stop businesses from creating jobs. And to make sure that some companies get the odd bit of taxpayer money to help them continue to make money.”

“But if the government doesn’t believe in doing things why should it be giving businesses money?”

“That’s so they can thrive and benefit the country by creating jobs.”

“Right. But in the meantime, you’re not having a beer.”

“Exactly.”

“So, as I understand it: anything good that happens is because the government sat back and didn’t do anything because the economy benefits from small government, but anything bad that happens is because it was outside the government’s control.”

“Yep. Unless we’ve got a Labor government. They don’t believe in small government so when things go wrong under a Labor government it’s probably because of something they’ve done.”

“I see. And if there’s an interest rate rise next week…”

“It’s probably because the Reserve Bank is anticipating a Labor victory. But that’s not why I’m not drinking. The doctor told me that I have to lose fifteen kilos by the end of the year.”

“By the end of the year? But it’s still April.”

“So?”

“Well, you’ve committed to losing the weight by the end of the year.”

“Yeah?”

“Can’t you say that it’s enough to have a commitment and that you’ll look at different possible ways of getting there once you reach November and that there’s no need to deprive yourself now?”

“But that’s ridiculous. Surely I need to start now if I’m going to…”

“Well, how about if you just commit to it on two or three days a week?”

“Again, that’s…”

“But isn’t that what the Coalition’s doing about net zero. They’re committed to it but they don’t see any need to actually do anything because well, the commitment’s enough and anyway not all of them are committed so…”

“Fair point. I’ll keep drinking now and hope that something turns up by December. I mean there’s technological breakthroughs all the time.”

“Exactly.”

“Yeah, it’d be pretty silly to start now when anything might happen between now and December. You might as well get a jug and save the walk to the bar. I’ll get the next one!”

 

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The Media, Ted Baillieu And Curry Recipes For Scotty

Even if you don’t follow sport, you’re probably aware that fans tend to see decisions by umpires and referees differently. Part of this is because the supporters don’t always fully understand the rules, but often it’s a perception thing. I mention this in the light of various journalists complaining that the public doesn’t understand their role and that any criticism is vastly unfair and, anyway, Twitter is a sewer full of rats.

If we continue the sporting analogy for a moment, it’s common for both sides to be critical of umpiring decisions. It’s also true that there may be a lopsided free-kick count from time to time. However, while it’s not common that officials will take to the media to justify themselves, it does happen. However, I’m yet to hear an AFL umpire get on social media and say something like: “My decisions shouldn’t have led to the vitriol and abuse. In fact, I’m even upset that someone said that I missed a crucial free in the dying minutes, but Carlton fans are a mob of pathetic whingers who lack basic good manners and breeding. They don’t have the intelligence to see what a great job I did and any criticism of me just shows how ignorant they are!”

To me, democracy is a fairly simple thing: People put forward ideas, either as a member of a party or as an individual, and everyone else votes for the person whose ideas they think are best, so it’s a matter of some concern when the media aren’t discussing these ideas but instead resemble football commentators speculating on which team is best placed to win and what last week’s result suggests about the upcoming finals.

The fact that the media can switch from: “But we’re just reporting what the PM said; it’s not our job to filter it!” to “There’s no basis for Labor’s scare campaign.” without seeing an inherent contradiction baffles me no end. And it also baffles me that they can say that Bill Shorten’s agenda was too scary and complicated in 2019, so it’s really outrageous that Labor have dumped nearly all of it and are trying to adopt a small target while overlooking the fact that the Liberals haven’t put forward a single element of any of their so-called plans for net-zero or the economy.

So with my rather simple view of democracy, I found Ted Baillieu’s opinion piece in the Nine papers rather perplexing. Ted Baillieu was a Liberal Premier of Victoria for two years before deciding to stand down after one of his MPs quit the party leaving it in a rather precarious position, so as someone who seems to understand the nature of needing a majority of votes in a democracy, his views on the independents challenging Liberals seemed a little confused. Apparently, their decision to stand was somehow wrong because they were challenging the next generation of Liberals and – if they won – we’d be missing out on a truckload of talent.

Now, I would have thought that it’s up to the voters to decide on whether these MPs deserve another term, but not according to Ted, who went on to list the many attributes of Josh Frydenberg, before adding how well respected Dave Sharma was internationally and following with something that made his praise of these two seem like sarcasm when he praised Tim Wilson for his “extraordinary diverse experience in public policy, community and human rights”. But no, it’s really naughty of these women to stand in what should be safe Liberal seats where we’ve but the best of the next generation to ensure that they don’t have to waste time with things like putting forward a case for why they think that a Coalition with the likes of Barnaby Joyce and Matt Canavan is in the best interests of the country.

When one of the big talking points of the election is Albanese’s mental lapse where he failed to recall some numbers, while ignoring Morrison’s mental lapses where he said, “Mr Speaker” on three occasions in a week instead of a day, you’ve got to wonder when we’ll talk about the big ideas and not play some silly games. I mean, I’ll bet nobody in the media asks Scott Morrison for a curry recipe and says that he’s not fit to be PM when he can’t recall all the ingredients!

We need to hear about what the actual plans are to ensure net-zero and an effective economy. Parroting the idea that we have lots and lots of jobs isn’t really an indication of the economy running smoothly. The fact that businesses are claiming that they can’t get workers is just as much a sign that the government is mismanaging the economy as higher unemployment.

While there’s every chance that the election will be tighter than the polls suggested a few weeks ago, there’s also a strong tendency to overlook the difficulty the Morrison government will have in holding on. Of course, it doesn’t help when the media keep asking Labor how much things will cost, while never asking the same question of the Liberals.

According to the framing, Labor spends money on things like infrastructure and education, while the Liberals invest in infrastructure and education.

 

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The Upside Of Scott Morrison Winning The Election!

Ok, I know that everyone took it for granted that Labor would win in 2019. And I know that the true believers are worried about history repeating. I know that nothing’s predictable and that there exists a chance that Scott Morrison will be able to hypnotise large numbers of the public into forgetting that his government has made Tony Abbott look empathetic and Billy McMahon look competent.

Even though I point out that this is not 2019 where Scotty From PhotoOps was largely unknown and that he seemed pretty harmless to a lot of people and hadn’t we just seen those “Back in Black” mugs which made some feel they’d be a bit silly to risk all that sound economic management, some people will still be shaking in their boots and fearing that we’ll have three more years of this bumbling bozo.

While much of the media commentary centres on the campaign and the narrowing of the opinion polls and how difficult it’s going to be for Labor to pick up the necessary seats. it’s worth remembering that he only has to lose a couple of seats and he’s in minority government. It’s also worth remembering that – by and large – 2019 was accurate in terms of the poll numbers in the weeks before the election with the exception of Queensland.

Yes, I could go on pointing out the differences and it wouldn’t soothe the nerves of those who fear that Morrison will do it again. And who knows, he might.

So with that in mind, I thought I’d concentrate on the upside of Morrison’s win.

He’ll destroy the Liberal Party.

Think about it. The NSW branch are already pissed off and have taken him to court. Of course, one of the people who tried to take him to court had his party membership revoked under some by-law which confers god-like status on the Prime Minister. How many other dissenting voices would Morrison get rid of after the election?

Morrison has also changed the rules to stop the party getting rid of him without a two-thirds majority. Add to this the fact that he’s trying to stack the party with acolytes so that it’ll be impossible to remove him.

Then we have the coming interest rate rises. Now, normally the Liberal Party have enough sense to lose an election just before the economic shit hits the economic fan. Look how John Howard said, “Stand down and leave it to Peter Costello to win? No, not only would that be terribly unsatisfying because I’ve enjoyed holding out the treat and then taking it away and there’s no fun in actually giving it to him, but I think we’re about due for another recession which we can then blame Labor for… We have to think long term and then I can have a bit of a rest and come back as leader like Lazarus with a quadruple bypass…”

(Ok, I have no actual record of John Howard saying this but – like Angus Taylor – I don’t need to have anything to back up the things I think are true; it’s enough that I believe that it might be true. Actually, it’s enough for me to want it to be true.)

Moving on, Scotty is re-elected and they can’t get rid of him, even though most of the country is waking up like somebody who drank too much and decided to get back at their ex by having a one-night stand with the first eligible person who came along only to discover that their definition of “eligible” was considerable different after three wines, a vodka cocktail and what was that last drink I ordered shortly before saying, “Viva Mr Speaker…”

Anyway, the only option is for the moderates to leave the party, form an alliance with the Independents and create a party which they’ll call the “Fuck Scott Morrison Party” until they can agree on a name that’s more acceptable to the AEC, even though there’s general consensus that the basic sentiment in the name is acceptable to more than seventy percent of Australians.

Far-fetched? Perhaps. But not as far-fetched as the general media interest in opinion polls when – if the election ends up being a win to the Coalition – I could be just as accurate if I pulled two numbers out of a hat and said that this was the two-party preferred vote. Ok, maybe the numbers need to be 50 something to the equivalent 40 something but you get the drift.

In terms of this election campaign, the line “Whatever happened to the Budget emergency?” probably won’t be used but Labor might like to consider: “When Scott Morrison says if you vote for me, you know what you’ll get, we’d like to agree, but is it what we deserve?”

Ok, it’s more than a three-word slogan but sometimes the truth can’t be expressed succinctly. Although the PM did say something about, “Better the devil you know…” Perhaps, Labor could try something like “It’s time we didn’t have a devil for PM…”

I guess this is why I’m not in advertising!

 

Image from thebugonline.com.au

 

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Incredible Leaked Copy Of Scott Morrison’s Election Campaign Speech!

Someone has sent me a copy of Scott Morrison’s election launch speech. Like most of what he says, I can’t vouch for its authenticity:

“Good evening and how good is it to be in election mode?

“This election is all about you. It’s not about integrity commissions or the climate or Covid or any of those things that Labor want to distract you with. That’s the thing about Labor – they don’t have an agenda so all they want to do is attack the man. They want to talk about my record and let me tell you I have saved 25 million Australian lives thanks to my great management but this election is not about that. It’s about making sure that it’s not a win for that nasty, little man who’s lost weight and knows nothing about economics and nobody knows and is in charge of a party that’s full of people that say nasty things all the time because that’s all they know. All they do is attack because they don’t have a vision. We have a vision on this side of politics… in my case, it was a vision of an eagle but that’s not the sort of thing that ever happens to those divorced heathens on the other side who’ve failed to bring the budget back to surplus which we have a plan to do sometime after hitting net zero.

”Labor want to talk about us, so that people overlook the fact that it was thanks to them that there is no integrity commission. I made a promise to introduce one at the last election and I told Labor of my plans and they prevented it by putting up such ridiculous objections as the idea that people should know when politicians are being investigated for corruption and that the commission should have the power to investigate people without their consent. This sort of kangaroo court is not on. We already have plenty of ways to investigate wrongdoing, including those very friendly Australian Federal Police officers and Phil Gaetjens.

”We know that there are cost of living pressures on families because Jen and the girls and I are one. That’s why we’re giving $250 to people on welfare and $450 to lower-income earners as a one-off payment. That should tide you over till the next election. Of course, that’s not all the support we’re giving to families. If you have a go, you get a go and those who are having the sort of go where they earn more than $120,000 a year, we’ll be giving them thousands in tax cuts, because it’s only fair that, as the Bible says, ‘Those that have shall be given more.’

”As for climate change, we are definitely against it. We will support any action to reduce the impact of climate change as long as it doesn’t cost any money or lead to any changes in the behaviours of the Australian people. We have a commitment to achieve net-zero 2050 by waiting until after the next few years and using whatever technologies anyone comes up with but until then, it would be the sort of reckless to even mention the words, climate action. This would leave Labor and The Greens and those independents… who are really Labor in disguise because they keep arguing for things like climate action and integrity…this would leave room for them to bring up the idea that people should be taxed for simply burning coal and cutting down trees which are part of God’s plan which is why he gave us factories and axes.

“We have a plan to keep energy prices low by ensuring that we keep using reliable coal-fired power as long as possible because it’s much more reliable than the sun or wind. You all probably remember how unreliable the sun and wind are when the coal-fired power stations go offline because they need repairing, which happens all too frequently because people haven’t been building new ones. If were are re-elected we plan to demonstrate our commitment to recycling by recycling our policy of investigating the viability of building a new coal-fired power station in one of those Queensland seats that may be grateful for our support.

“Economic management is important and it’s too important to risk on a party who, when they were last in government, caused the Global Financial Crisis and racked up so much debt that it was a budget emergency. In government, we have managed to slow the rate of debt increase so that by 2072, we will begin to return to a surplus. Sound economic management is what we do, so whatever we do must be sound economic management even if it doesn’t seem like it at the time. Labor, on the other hand, don’t have a plan and all they do is talk about us, because they’re the Bill you can’t afford and even though there’s no longer a Bill as leader, they are still a Bill because I can’t think of anything to make a pun about when it comes to Anthony. If Labor had any plan for the future they’d be talking about it and not things like what the government has done over the past few years which isn’t really worth talking about because it’s the future that counts.

”Think of this election like a visit to the dentist: you may be anticipating it’ll be pretty painful and you can’t wait till it’s over with, but you certainly want to know that you’re dentist is competent and you don’t worry about whether he’s popular or not. I’d like you to consider me as you would your dentist, prepared to do what’s necessary even if it hurts but I’ll make sure that you’re pretty numb first.

“Finally you all need to remember that we’re the party who leads on Defence. We will spend more on our Defence forces, strengthening our capabilities and building our numbers. Labor are weak on Defence and if you elect them, there’s a very good chance that we won’t go to war with China.

“So that’s it from me. Consider your vote carefully and just let me thank Jen and the girls for being here and if the camera could just swing as they make their way onto the stage after a closeup of my wedding ring, that would be a great way to finish.”

 

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Scott Morrison Slammed By Expert Talking To Another Expert…

Before I start, I’d like to insert this great series of questions for the press pack at any press conference tomorrow :

As you heard if you watched the video, the questions were:

  1. What is your name? (Or who are you if it’s the PM because everyone knows Scomo. Albo could be asked his name because – apparently – nobody know him.)
  2. What is your quest?
  3. What’s the airspeed velocity of an unladen sparrow?

Obviously the first two questions are just fillers and it’s the final one that counts so Albanese better get that right, and he can’t get around it by asking how many swallows does it take to make the press pack more sympathetic. (I”m referring to the drinks they’re supplied with, not the prayer room, so don’t come the homophobic path with me, sunshine!) Morrison is our leader, so he can just be presumed to know…

Ok, I’ve noticed that a lot of this election coverage has been journalists interviewing politicians at press conferences but even more has been journalists crossing to other journalists to ask them how things have gone. While it’s not unusual for journalists to cross to other journalists who are on the spot, what makes an election campaign different is that there’s a lot of subjectivity at play here. “Well, Leigh, the PM handled that question brilliantly. He asked what media organisation the questioner was from and then he pointed out that the particular organisation had no official status owing to their refusal to keep their questions succinct and about the future, unless it was bringing up something that Labor had done in the past, but he added that he would have been more than happy to answer it were it not for the fact that they had run out of time and he needed to be turning around so that the press could get a shot of him leaving. Absolutely brilliant!”

So I just decided to do my own version of “Insiders” where members of the press give their perspective before being interrupted by David Speers if they say anything that might be considered vaguely interesting, as it may start a nasty precedent. In order to save money in this time of cutbacks, I decided to keep costs to a minimum so I’m just going to have an “Insiders” type discussion with myself.

  • Good afternoon and welcome, I’m Rossleigh and today’s guest is Rossleigh who’ll be sharing his expert insights on the election campaign so far. Ok, Rossleigh, what stands out so far for you?
  • Good afternoon, well, it’s hard to get past Albo’s gaffe…
  • Yes, everybody’s talking about it.
  • People just won’t stop bringing it up. I don’t know how he can get past this. I was in the pub the other day and a couple of punters were saying that if Albanese didn’t know the current cash rate then he sure wouldn’t know things like the exchange rate of The Australian dollar in Albania….
  • Yes, I don’t know if he can even get over this gaffe because it seems to be a topic of discussion in the media that just won’t go away.
  • Certainly most of us won’t let it and we’ll keep pointing out that we won’t be the last one to talk about it, passing the torch to whoever wants to say that it certainly won’t be me either because we have an election to make all about Albo while complaining that he’s largely invisible.
  • Do you think it’ll be a focus of the whole campaign from hereon?
  • Certainly Morrison and the Liberals would like it to be because it just emphasises all that they’ve said about the Labor Party.
  • That they’re not very good economic managers?
  • Well, that, but I was more talking about the fact that they’re not very good campaigners. I understand that Scott Morrison rallied the troops a few weeks ago and told them the past few years had been a complete fuckup and that they might all hate each other but it was now that the real work began because there’s an election to be won.
  • Yes, I noticed that one journalist today noted that Scott may not be very good at government but he was an excellent campaigner.
  • Mm, and that’s what we want in a government. That’s why Collingwood stuck with Buckley for so long. Totally shit at winning games, but he was great in the after match conferences… I think Scott has modelled himself a lot on Buckley.
  • Now some people have suggested that it’s not all about winning the election and that it would be better to get a competent government…
  • Well, that all depends on what you value. For years the Liberals valued winning the election, while Labor valued principled stands, but eventually people became impressed with some of Labor’s ideas like pulling troops out of Vietnam and they got elected anyway. This was probably the beginning of the end for them, because they too, decided that winning was preferable to losing, leaving the principled stand to The Greens. Of course, now they’ve won a lower house seat, they’ve started following the major parties down the let’s win path.
  • Do you feel you’re being a little harsh there?
  • I certainly hope so.
  • But why should people listen to you?
  • Well, if I’m important enough to be interviewed, doesn’t that make my opinion worth more than anyone else’s?
  • Yes, but you’re interviewing yourself… which I could suggest is probably too meta for your average punter.
  • You would say that, but that’s just typical of your arrogance. Look, if it’s good enough for journalists to interview other journalists then what sort of problem can you have with you interviewing yourself?
  • I don’t know, it just sort of seems…
  • Look, I think it’s time you asked me for my final thoughts…
  • Ok, final thought?
  • Yeah, Scott Morrison is the biggest weasel we’ve ever had as a Prime Minister and every time I say that it couldn’t get any worse, the Liberals say “Hold my beer!” Well, mate, this time I think it’s time we tipped it out all over them and told them that it’s about time that they found someone with the integrity of Billy Hughes because that’d be an improvement. Scott Morrison should be the low point in the history of Tourism Australia. The fact that he was able to resurrect his career after that gives me hope that one day Chopper Read will do more for this country than Morrison.
  • Um, Chopper Read’s dead.
  • Yeah, I rest my case.
  • Thank you, and that’s all we have time for today. Tomorrow we’ll explain why Scott Morrison told us something on day one and completely contradicts himself on day two is somehow because he didn’t understand the question and this is not a problem but the inability to recite Pi to five decimal places means that one can’t be in charge of electric vehicles.

 

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Labor, Schrodinger’s Cat And The Amazing Disappearing Man…

It’s quite interesting to examine the contradictions as politicians face the coming election.

Take Labor. We’re told that Labor are captive of the unions, that they spend too much and that they tax too highly, However, as the campaign begins we are also hearing that we have no idea about Labor in government and that they aren’t putting their policies out there. The political equivalent of Schrodinger’s Cat.

Schrodinger’s Cat for those of you who haven’t either read up on Quantum physics or watched “The Big Bang Theory” wasn’t an actual cat, but a thought experiment where Schrodinger’ theorised about a cat trapped in a box with a vial of poison which may or may not have been opened. Therefore, Schrodinger argued that until we open the box, the cat can be considered both alive and dead, which I’d argue that after a few days with no food or water the cat can pretty much be considered dead, but for the purposes of Schrodinger’s thought experiment, the fact of the cat being both alive and dead was central to some point he was trying to make about the problems with the Copenhagen interpretation of quantum mechanics…

The best way to understand it, is to think of Alan Tudge. He was cleared of breaching ministerial standards by an investigation which didn’t speak to his accuser and then he stood down from his ministerial role, but – according to Mr Morrison yesterday – Tudge is still in the Cabinet. Like the cat, Mr Tudge is in a sealed space and we have no way of knowing whether he’s actually going to be a minister or not until the Cabinet is opened after the election.

Anyway, the Coalition and some of the media have found their own version of Schrodinger’s cat when it comes to the Labor Party: We don’t know enough about them and, rather than take a chance on the unknown, we should stick with Scot Morrison because we know what he’s like and it’s better to stick with a lying, cheating, bullying, rorting incompetent who makes curries every time something bad happens in the hope that people will mock his curry making and forget whatever disaster happened in the precious week. On the other hand, Labor is clearly the party that can’t be trusted with the economy because well, it’s in a difficult position at the moment and you don’t want to hand it over to someone else because the Liberals were the ones who’ve presided over the first recession in Australia for nearly thirty years, but now everything’s ok again, and we’ll drag out the Back In Black mugs to show just how well, we would have done if only we hadn’t had things go wrong which -even though it was under our watch – it was nothing to do with us because who can control the economy? Until we open the box, Labor is both a mystery with no policies and also the party who has all the wrong policies.

The Liberals also understand about cost of living pressures. The Budget included measures to help with these: If you’re on a welfare payment you get $250 which should tide you over for the next three years. However, if you’re a low-income worker, you’ll get (up to) an extra $450 when you do your tax return which is a one-off measure to help with your decision to vote for the Coalition.

Whatever happens in the next few weeks, this election will be all about character. Again we’ll be given the choice between a STRONG leader who stands up to people and how some people call it bullying just because he calls people into a room and threatens them with consequences over their recent behaviour, and an Opposition leader who is too weak to answer questions… Yes, I can see Anthony Albanese standing at a press conference being asked why he won’t appear at press conferences and answer questions about whatever it is that Scotty has told the press pack to ask, only to have Albo point out that he’s just answered the question without rejecting its premise even though the premise was completely rejectable… This will be followed by a question about why Labor is a policy-free zone, where he points out policies on Aged Care, Childcare, the environment, climate change and an integrity commission… Then he’ll be asked how he’s going to pay for the policies he doesn’t have.

Yes, one of the charges that will be levelled at our Prime Minister is that he has misunderstood the old saying that when the going gets tough, the tough get going,, and that it doesn’t actually mean that you’re meant to disappear in a crisis. However, calling the PM names like “The Invisible Man” and “The disappearing actor” or “That Cowardly POS” is not really fair, because, well, it’s Anthony Albanese who seems to have disappeared without trace.

There seems no acknowledgement of his twenty-six years in Parliament, his campaign against nuclear energy, his role as manager of Opposition business, his ministerial roles as in Infrastructure & Transport and in Regional Development, or even his role as Deputy PM. Although the role of Deputy PM is clearly not a very important one because the Liberals allow the Nationals to pick it. It’s rather like when you let your children decide what they’ll have for dinner because it’s their birthday. It may be a shocking choice in the healthy eating department but it’s not like you’re going to let them have their choice about anything that has long term consequences.

Yes, it seems that Anthony Albanese is the one who’s disappeared and not Scott Morrison… although we never seem to hear about why he was sacked by Fran Bailey when he was at Tourism Australia.

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