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And so it begins – is Malcolm up to the challenge?

George Christensen has called for major changes to the Coalition superannuation policy or he will cross the floor.

The Mackay-based MP did not express his concern in the party room, choosing instead to announce his opposition on Facebook.

“These policies are Labor-style policies which hit those people who have worked hard all of their lives; those who have scrimped and saved and done the right thing.

“These policies penalise success. Principally, these policies hit small business owners and farmers who have retired, sold their assets and transferred their wealth into superannuation.

“More importantly, I hate it when government fiddles with super. It’s not the government’s money, it’s YOUR money. We in government need to remember that.

“If the government’s superannuation policy does not change, I will be crossing the floor and voting against these measures.”

Aside from the questionable practice of using social media to disagree with your own party’s policy just taken to an election, just how many people in George’s electorate would be affected by the changes?

The 2011 census gave the following results for the electorate of Dawson.

The median/average age of the people in Dawson is 36 years of age.

The median individual income is $666 per week and the median household income is $1401 per week.

The median rent in Dawson is $295 per week and the median mortgage repayment is $1950 per month.

The main occupations of people living in Dawson are 18.9% Technicians & trades workers, 13.9% Professionals, 12.9% Clerical & administrative workers, 12.1% Labourers, 11.4% Managers, 11.4% Machinery operators & drivers, 9.0% Sales workers, 8.7% Community & personal service workers, 1.8% Occupation inadequately described/ Not stated.

According to the ABS, the median sale price of houses in the Mackay region in 2013 was $425,000 and the median total income was $53,099.

In other words, George has chosen this crusade for reasons other than representing the concerns of his constituents.

And why make the threat to cross the floor publicly before any discussion or negotiation?

Christensen is also demanding the backpacker’s tax be abandoned.

Also disturbingly, Bob Katter, in an interview on Sky, said he doesn’t have an opinion on the same sex marriage plebiscite – he’s “not a specialist in this field” – but he will take his lead from his good friend and neighbour George Christensen because he’s right up on it and he was the one to expose the Safe Schools program, something Mr Katter apparently saw as an outstanding piece of investigation by George which saved the moral fibre of the country. One wonders about the future of the plebiscite considering Christensen’s opposition to marriage equality.

George is flexing his muscles in a very tight Parliament and the way he has chosen to do it is an open challenge to Malcolm Turnbull. What remains to be seen is if Malcolm can assert himself as Prime Minister or will he be forever susceptible to threats from of the likes of Christensen.


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  1. Freethinker

    Few days ago Malcolm Turnbull said, quote: “three years of strong, stable economic leadership delivering on the promises we made”.
    Scott Morrison, has indicated the Coalition leadership will consider “technical” changes to the legislation with the most likely negotiation points around the $500,000 cap.
    George said that he will cross the floor and Eric Abetz’s calls for “recalibration” of the policy.
    Joyce said it was Christensen’s right to cross the floor because National party was the “freest party” in the parliament.

    Who is running the show?

    This is chaos even before the first seating.

  2. etnorb

    Another well written article Kaye! What a typical stupid statement from yet another “brains trust” Liberal! How can he “cross the floor” if he does not agree with the Liberal Superannuation policy, when he openly states that he thinks the proposals are “Labor-style”? If he crosses the floor, surely he is agreeing with the Labor-style policies? Or is my understanding of what he is saying wrong? Either way, he is yet (again!) showing us all jut how bloody clever & on the ball he is–just like ALL the others of his party! NOT!! As for mad Hatter relying on his “good mate” Christiansen for ANY “advice” on the matter of same-sex marriage, one can only shudder! It never ceases to amaze me where all these inept Liberal/National politicians actually come from! There must be some sort of “stupid school” somewhere in Australia (North QLD perhaps?), that specialises in sending out to the long-suffering voters, ALL of this lot! If most of the Labor Party in Canberra seem to be “normal” people, then what happened on the Liberal side? Eff knows! All I know is, every day–& sometimes more than that–someone from the Liberal side opens their mouth & comes out with the most ridiculous drivel! God help us, we have this inept, lying lot of incompetents until the next election! Bugger!

  3. John Lord

    The tax breaks on super are costing the government in foregone revenue about $45 billion a year and this is roughly the same amount that is spent each year on the age pension.

    • The dollar value of the tax breaks is growing faster than expenditure on the aged pension, making concessions on super contributions a much bigger threat to balancing government finances in the near-term.

    The super tax concessions are skewed to high-income earners: the top 10 per cent of income earners reap more than 36 per cent of the tax concession dollars, while the bottom 10 per cent are actually penalised for making super contributions.

  4. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    If George Christensen’s electorate demographics are those people with moderate incomes and assets, then why did they vote an ignoramus and ultra neoliberal like Christensen back into his seat?

  5. Kaye Lee

    The thing I don’t understand about George’s comment is that no-one is suggesting taking anyone’s money, just reining in some of the tax concessions that disproportionately favour the rich.


    I cannot answer that.

  6. kerri

    Christensen is drunk with power given his success with safe schools! Turnbull studied law right?? Does he not comprehend the concept of setting a precedent?

  7. Phil

    Nicely done Kaye – solid facts blow spurious arguments clean off the page – they won’t mean anything to the likes of Christensen, but they sure as hell put paid to what smidgeon of credibility he may have had. Is it something in the north Queensland water perhaps?

  8. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    Christensen strikes me as a colonial White Supremist akin to plantation owners in southern America, Jamaica etc.

    He has never done the hard physical work himself but he’s benefited by inheritance a system that profits off the backs of working people and the environment.

    Christensen’s misfortune is that his life has been too well provided based on no merit at all and he has failed to see that even his benefactors think he is a dud.

  9. Gangey1959

    Crucifiction, line on the Far Right,1 blazing cross each.
    They are a bunch of sooks, aren’t they.
    3 weeks after the election that saw them scrape over the line by 1, or maaaaaaybe 2, and the children from the houses where the people who wear the strange shoes live are starting to misbehave and demand that they shall be allowed to hold their breath until we all listen to them scream and bang their heads against the wall.
    It’s a mad monk production of ”Jobsngrowth2016, this time for sure.”
    Director m turdbott. Financed by scooter moronscum.
    The choir consists of corhesaburntarshole, erica betz, barnaby joyless, georgie christmasiscoming, and bob katshatagain.
    Funny voices by prissy crissy pyne and that weird guy that no one quite knows what to do with because hes just dumb, and wishes that someone would explain to him that he’s on the wrong continent, mathias ”ha ha ha” corimstupidbuttheresacameraman.
    The roles of Statler and Waldorf will be ably filled by Deryn Hinch and pauline hanson et al from the upper house.
    If the Electric Mayhem can stay with the leadership of billy ”Dr Teeth”shortarse and not cause too many diversions from the main plot, in another 3 years time they might have a good shot with their own script, but only time will tell. I fancy the media is going to give this one a better review than it deserves, but voldemurdoch is good like that.
    All the rest of us can do is sit back and watch, and hang on to what little we have left.
    Personally, if I was Director turdbott, I’d have a quiet word with Dr Teeth about putting together a halfway decent combination of song and dance/ musicians and take the show on the road while the nut jobs stay safe in Canberra and froth quietly at the mouth, but our mal just doesn’t have the stones.
    Shame really. It could have been a world beater.

  10. Jennifer Meyer-Smith


    have you ever done Stand-up Comedy? You should.

  11. Freethinker

    Gangey1959, there are two options to approach the current situation, one it is going absolutely mad and depressed and the other is just take it with a bit of humor and sarcasm.
    You have taken the second option, good on you, it is good for the health.

  12. Kaye Lee

    On the backpacker’s tax, Christensen tweeted “The #backpackertax needs to be sorted ASAP but we need to ask why so many of those on the dole refuse farm jobs.”

    I would ask instead why so many farmers refuse to pay real wages. How does someone on the dole travel around for seasonal jobs even if the farmer would pay a living wage? Not to mention the paperwork hell for someone on the dole who gets a few weeks work and then has to reapply. Perhaps we could have a fleet of ‘farm buses’ to transport willing participants and organise affordable accommodation for them and reduce the paperwork/regulation burden when the job finishes?

    But the farmers want their cheap labour.

    “Growcom’s Rachel Mackenzie said the deferral of the introduction of the 32.5 per cent tax on backpackers and a review of Working Holiday Visa programs were welcomed by farmers.

    “It is the review that we need to have; it is looking at Australia’s competitive position in terms of attracting seasonal workers, temporary foreign labour and woofers,” she said.

    “It is looking at the whole suite of issues around the capacity to access labour and I think that is really important that we have this review and I congratulate them, the LNP.”

    Ms Mackenzie said farmers employed tens of thousands of backpackers and they were essential to the viability of farms relying on seasonal labour.

    However, she said the uncertainty surrounding the future of the tax was affecting the willingness of backpackers to work on farms.

    “We have heard stories of backpackers who come here for a holiday and then go to New Zealand to work.”


  13. guest

    First up, I do not think Malcolm is up to the job because he is having to sort out basically the same bunch of bunglers who have been bungling about over the past 3 years, with a few lost (Thank God!). He himself included.

    On The Drum today we had mention of Matt Canavan and an article he wrote last year on Climate Change He said, apparently, that in Medieval Times they blamed witches for causing storms, while today we blame carbon emissions for causing Global Warming. He said we need to ask more questions. He said to do anything about climate change would condemn the poor to poverty..

    Ruddock said Canavan is not a sceptic. He just did not want to tie our hands behind our back before the world had come to some agreement.

    Julia Baird asked about leadership, but Ruddock did not want to enter that debate.

    Bur Bob Brown did. He said firmly that there is a cost to delaying. I think it went right over the top of Ruddock’s thinking.

    Frydenberg is clearly in favour of more coal mining. He will push the ‘jobs’ claims, despite its falsity – and fantasy.

    Along with that kind of propaganda goes the fact that the ABC has been stifled by the influence of Murdoch. Fact Checker has been shut down and The Drum as an on-line discussion forum has been shut down. When Canavan and Ruddock espouse the idea of more discussion, these measures in the AbC and the cutting down of research scientist numbers in the CSIRO are examples of the suppression of truth in the wider community.

    The Oz society is being dumbed down and dudded.

  14. Gangey1959

    I have wondered what a late application of Rule 303 to a few of the more out there lnp rwnj members of the lower house might have, because if some of them were suddenly unable to fulfil their duties a series of by-elections would have to be held. Interesting concept.
    There is no point taking a few of the senators away far a few days ”fishing”, because they just get replaced. At least that is my understanding.
    As to why did anyone vote for little fat glasses wearing goes to church and uses his fingers to count and dribbles when he mumbles and spells at the same time georgeie c, who was so proud that he got rid of the anti bullying in schools program because he hasn’t needed to come out of the closet yet and he’ll tell his thug mate cory to bash anyone who teases him about it ?
    Not even F*ck knows.

  15. Kaye Lee

    Canavan admitted that he just cold called Barnaby Joyce a few years ago asking him for a job…”and look where I am now”.

    In that article about witches, Canavan said “We need red team funding of scientists who take a different view on climate change. Even if such teams ultimately take positions that are incorrect, by challenging the climate zeitgeist they would make our scientific knowledge stronger.”


    In Parliament in December last year he said

    “Despite what you might hear in the media—and, indeed, what you heard in this chamber only a short while ago—climate change science has become less certain and gives us less reason to worry since the last major climate conference in Copenhagen six years ago.”


  16. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    Frydenberg is the epitome of the thinking politician who deserves recrimination first. He/they knowingly follow regressive, harmful policies that destroy people’s livelihoods and the environment within which we ALL live.

    By having a weak-arse like Frydenberg in the Environment and Renewable Energy portfolio excites me as much as seeing Greg Hunt remark on the beauty of the disappearing Great Barrier Reef.

    Nuremberg Principles should apply to these LNP effwits.

    LNPees who follow orders regardless of consequences are guilty anyway.

    Their times will come before or after their resignations or defeats.

  17. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    Thanks Freethinker,

    for telling me what I already knew about Hunt’s self-delusions or outright deception.

    However, what’s this about my blood pressure?

  18. Freethinker

    , Dr Malcolm Roberts, the chief of The Australian Petroleum Production and Exploration Association said regarding the appointment of Frydenberg combining the two portfolios was the “holy grail” of policy development.

    “The holy grail of policy is integrated environment and energy policies, which can deliver lower emissions and affordable energy security,”

    “Energy belongs with the environment portfolio. The positive story about natural gas often gets lost in the resources debate, whereas in environment discussions it is absolutely clear that gas will be part of our future for many decades to come. Australia will be part of the international move towards increasing renewable energy, but this cannot be achieved without a reliable source of energy for peak periods and to meet the energy demand that can’t be met by renewable energy,”

  19. Freethinker

    Jennifer, i was thinking that this kind of news makes your blood boil and pressure go high. It happens to me but then again I have Latin blood

  20. Freethinker

    Michael Roche, the Queensland Resources Council chief executive is happy with Canavan appointment.
    He said: “The resources sector requires steady safe hands to ride through the commodities downturn and in the face of a relentless green activist campaign,” Mr Roche said.
    “Senator Canavan has already proven to be a champion for the sector in Queensland, in his role as Minister for Northern Australia, and I am confident he will be a strong voice for resources around the cabinet table.”

    Looks like that Malcolm is going to be very popular with this mob.

  21. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    Yes Freethinker,

    to all your posts

    but please don’t concern yourself with my blood pressure again.

  22. Matters Not

    Citing Canavan:

    I want to focus on the facts and, given that those facts do not lead to conclusive judgements

    Yes he’s right about the ‘fact’ that carbon dioxide levels in the atmosphere are on the increase and he’s also correct in his assertion that ‘facts’ do not lead to ‘conclusive judgements’. But, as I have argued elsewhere, ‘facts’ are a ‘dime a dozen’ (almost an infinite number) and in themselves they don’t ‘lead’ anywhere.

    While ‘facts’ are crucial to any debate, what is of greater importance is the ‘meaning(s)’ given to those facts. From my perspective, the convincing meanings given to ‘facts’ flows from expertise. When I look at an X Ray for example, I don’t know what ‘meaning’ to give to ‘shadows’, or ‘blurs’ or whatever. For me, X Rays all look the same. As for pathology reports – and any other reports from experts – I rely on the ‘experts’ and the ‘meanings’ they give.

    Yes indeed, I choose to believe what the ‘experts’ say re the ‘facts’ and yes I agree, that ‘facts’ lead nowhere in themselves but to suggest as Canavan does that the ‘facts’ are in dispute is misleading (at best).

    As to the appropriate (or best) policy response, then that might be debated.

  23. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    Canavan is clearly a convenient LNP newbody, nobody who has not and probably won’t prove any marvel, as a LNP cabinet member.

  24. Tim Magee

    Christensen, unfortunately, has the ear of what is a largely uneducated and broadly racist electorate. He preys on people’s fear of ongoing job insecurity in the region yet fails to face the problem with innovation. This is just another case of him banging a drum while safe in the knowledge his electorate, for the most part, won’t notice that it makes little sense.

  25. gee

    George Christensen, hideous in every way, thanks FNQ, FAR QUE BACK !!

  26. Kaye Lee

    My cousin thinks we should adopt the Trump solution and build a wall on the Queensland borders to keep the Qld politicians in. Make Queenslanders deal with the people they elected and leave the rest of us in peace.

  27. Kyran

    Just when you think the genius of the oracle of the north can’t become more profound, he opens his orifice and lets another one rip. Todays contribution;
    “It worries them [voters], and I know that Pauline might for instance say the reaction to that is that we should ban Islamic immigration, I disagree with that, but that’s her right to actually suggest that,” Mr Christensen said.

    “There could be a measured approach where we … ban immigration from countries where there is a high level of radicalism and violent extremism, and that would be taking the precautionary principle and putting that into play when it comes to national security.”


    If we ban immigration from countries where there is a high level of violent extremism, should we ban all immigration, or just the Muslim’s? Perhaps we should consider halting our attempts to blow them back to the stone age.
    It’s not like a rational person would try to flee such indiscriminate destruction. It’s not like a rational person would do everything they could to protect the one’s they love. It’s not like the orifice could ever be accused of rational thought. Thank you Ms Lee. Take care

  28. Kaye Lee

    Oh good plan George. Refugee status should be interesting. We only accept people from countries where there is no reason to flee so anyone applying couldn’t possibly be a refugee.

  29. Divergent Aussie

    Anyone see the drum where Ruddick claimed Canavan wasn’t a denier?

  30. Möbius Ecko

    Well that blows all immigration from the USA. Even more so if Trump gets elected as POTUS.

  31. helvityni

    I was wondering why we are getting more and more hopeless Liberal politicians, the ilk of Christensen, Bernardi, Ms Cash etc…. The I saw Ruddock on the Drum, and wondered no more…

  32. guest

    One thing you will notice about Climate Warming deniers is that they never actually talk about the science, except to say that it is not in.

    Ask them which part of the science is in dispute and they do not know what to say, because they do not know anything about the science. They will try to say that warming is good; or more CO2 is good for the planet; or it has all happened before.

    Quite simply, there is no denier science. Just a lot of cherry-picking and quibbling about words. Even John Christie, oft-quoted US denier “scientist’, will not reveal the “facts” upon which he bases his conclusions.

    Pauline Hanson does not believe in action on AGW because it would cost jobs. She does not understand there might be alternative jobs created. It is a classic head-in-the-sand ignorance.

  33. Kyran

    Ms Lee (@9.54), I could never understand Heller’s Catch 22.
    “A requirement that cannot be met until a prerequisite requirement is met, however, the prerequisite cannot be obtained until the original requirement is met.”
    When the illogical dictates to the logical, eh, Houston, I think we have a problem.
    There is an update on the orifice’s edict. Banana’s has weighed in. I’m not sure if the earlier link is updated, so check this one;


    “Mr Joyce criticised One Nation’s calls to ban Muslim immigration, saying: “What happens if we turn that on its head and start banning people because they’re Catholics or because they’re Protestants or because they’re Jewish?”
    “Every group has their ratbags, even Catholics. We had, in the past, the IRA (Irish Republican Army) but if someone says every Catholic is a member of the IRA, I’d say no.
    “They have nothing to do with the religion that I practise. Islam at the moment also has a lunatic fringe.”

    There are some serious flaws in his correlation between the IRA and catholics. It’s a bit like comparing Malcolm X and the ‘Black Panthers’ with the majority of Afro-Americans. My bad. That was his point. Who would have thunk banana’s would be worth listening to?
    Here’s the thing I can’t work out.
    Our bomb’s don’t discriminate. Not by gender, ethnicity, religion, age, occupation, guilt, complicity, innocence, occupation, wealth.
    Nothing. Other than your geography.
    Why is it more acceptable to apply more stringent criteria to our immigration policies than we apply to the bomb’s we indiscriminately drop?
    Grateful, as always, Ms Lee. Take care

  34. Dennis wilson


    I worked in the Mackay financial services industry for many years and believe me , their is a very wealthy minority cane farmer content who control the national party and their representative, in this case Christensen.

    These people are driven by one ideology- money and making more of it.

    This stance by Christensen is typical of their influence

  35. townsvilleblog

    George is of course the hero of the multiple number of local cane farmers and small businesses, who one would expect to vote for him, why working people would vote for him is a mystery to me. People in Mackay are amoung the friendliest people in Australia, yet they vote this right wing extremist into parliament, I don’t get it?

  36. townsvilleblog

    Kyran, Pauline is a six pack short of a carton, to blame every Muslim for the actions of a few is to be extreme and illogical.

  37. townsvilleblog

    Kaye Lee, We in Queensland only have two types of politician, bad or worse, at the moment we have settled for bad, because before the bad, we had the worse.

  38. RPerssons

    I live in Whitsunday, and own a small business. I DID NOT vote for Christianson. Nor did my relatives who own a Cane Farm. Do not tar us all with the same brush as that idiot. We have the two worst politicians in the country – Costigan and Christianson.
    I have tried to explain till I am blue in the face (and I don’t personally know any muslims) that the IS are a bunch of murderers and thrugs and are not true muslims. Why the media insists on calling them Muslims and Islamists has only inflamed hatred towards all muslims. Call them by their correct title – Criminals . Christians have certainly done far more in some of the Christian ‘Sects”. Wasn’t it a Christian that murdered the students in Norway in 2011. Do we then blame all Christians – No.
    I support Same Sex Marriage (It only effects their lives and gives happiness to them and their children) Why should we have to pay for a plebiscite, and what has it got to do with a government anyway.?

  39. Kyran

    Thanks, townsvilleblog. “Pauline is a six pack short of a carton” reminded me of other euphemisms for the likes of her.
    Simply put, that elevator never went to the top floor.
    RPerssons, what is it like being branded as an idiot because of your geography? Having been branded as an idiot, through genealogy, for most of my life, I long ceased worrying about the intellect of those around me.
    Here’s the thing. Are all Queenslander’s bad because of a few nuph-nuph’s? I don’t buy it. I don’t think any rational person would, or could.
    Take care

  40. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    Hear, hear RPerssons.

    I empathise with your sense of being under siege by degenerates who see the world in black and white only and white is definitely their preference.

    The people of this site are generally more capable of seeing differences and not making outlandish and unwarranted generalisations.

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