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Day to Day Politics: Is a divorce on the cards?

Wednesday 29 November 2017

1 I have been following politics in Australia for fifty years and I have happily accepted the cut and thrust of it. Even the theatre of it. I have experienced, even sympathised with the difficulties of players on both sides of the political divide. I have read much on the subject and confess to being a political tragic.

Moreover, I have probably seen more political scandal than most, including the Whitlam times when an unelected head of state dismissed an elected prime minister.

Nevertheless, nothing approaches the stench surrounding the Abbott/Turnbull Governments.

Their woes continue with the junior partner in the Coalition confirming who is governing by actually coming out in support of a Royal Commission into the banks.

On the one hand the senior partner and its leader are totally opposed and on the other the junior partner reckons it knows best and will vote for the inquiry.

With the National Party’s leader giving his blessing to rolling the Prime Minister it confirms two things. Firstly that it is Joyce who is calling the results and two, that Turnbull is all but finished. No leader worth his salt would allow himself to be rolled in such a manner. It may even end up in an amicable divorce.

Christopher Pyne had this to say yesterday morning:

“My message to all my colleagues is that disunity is death and if anyone thinks they are going to do well by creating disunity, they don’t do so. I’ve been in Parliament for a quarter of a century. I can tell you that when parties are disunited, they lose.”

I agree with that, except the horse has bolted.

However, in pure political terms it is the right decision and discloses, yet again, the poor judgement of the Prime Minister who’s shrieking rhetoric is currently reaching soprano proportions.

Joining John Alexander in the seat of Bennelong the Prime Minister said:

“Kristina Keneally wants us to bring all of those asylum seekers from Manus [Island] to Australia.”

“Now believe me, right now, the people smugglers are using Kristina Keneally’s articles, her statements on this as a marketing tool to get people onto their boats to take them to sea … When the boats start again, if Labor were ever to get back into government, how many of those asylum seekers is she going to bring to Bennelong?”

Ms Keneally responded by saying that; “The Prime Minister wants to make mischief with this issue because he doesn’t have anything else to talk about”

The thing about Turnbull is that this sort of shrieking rhetoric doesn’t become him. It is not the language of a gentleman. You might expect it of “The Fixer” Christopher Pyne, but not one with the image of a squire.

At the end of the first week of campaigning Alexander was ahead with 53 per cent compared to Ms Keneally on 47. That represents a swing of almost 7 per cent away from the Liberal Party against the 2016 election result.

Adding to Turnbull’s problems, and what can only be described as disastrous, NBN Co revealed on Monday the nationwide HFC rollout would be delayed, a setback that means tens of thousands voters in Bennelong will now have to wait up to nine months longer for the NBN.

Anyway it seems he has found $100 million in the form of commitment to building a transport hub in the electorate. Amazing where it comes from when it’s needed.

It is difficult to see how the Prime Minister can withstand this shirtfront by Barnaby Joyce and survive. It’s like the Deputy Prime Minister has said that if the ship is to sink, then the Captain should be the first overboard. He desperately wants the National Party to be the clean skins of this incompetent association.

A Royal Commission into the banks with popular support is the way to differentiate the Nats from the Libs. If Turnbull caves in he is the one with egg all over his face. But cave in he has to. With the Queensland result and the revolt of the Nats it has pulled down the Liberal Party’s last line of defence.

2 To say that Don Burke’s interview on Channel 9 was bizarre would be an understatement. Burke has now been added to a long list of men who had allegedly been acting badly. Mind you I have always said that men have never really grown up so it’s not surprising.

The common denominator, that repeats itself with all these accusations is the number of women involved. On the balance of probability they cannot all be lying.

But even more bizarre is the fact that a President of the United States has also been accused of serial molestation of women. He even described in one instance on TV just how he did it. You can read about it here: “What Happened to the 16 Women Who Accused Trump of Sexual Misconduct”.

3 Also bizarre was Tuesday night’s edition of “The Drum.” One of the guests, who unfortunately had the same name as the second President of the US, John Adams, didn’t handle the questions very well. Fact is he was so bizarre with most of them, that the moderator, (I have never seen this before) turned to him, lent over, put her elbow on the desk and asked him with all the frankness she could muster if he was really the full quid. Well, not in those words but you can watch it on The Drum Facebook page. (Itt doesn’t allow a link).

4 Did you know that the gross domestic product of the world’s 48 poorest 48 nations is less than the wealth of the world’s three richest people combined?

My thought for the day

“Given the choice of anyone in the world, whom would you want as a dinner guest?”


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  1. nurses1968

    A divorce might not be a bad Idea,
    I heard an interview with a Nationals Senator and found myself in complete agreement with him. {may be the only time ever}
    One swallow does not a summer make but there is hope a new breed of Nationals may want to dump the old brigade
    On the Banking issue this bloke made sense, even with the amendments he wants

    “Llew O’Brien Nationals,says he supports an inquiry into the banking sector, however his support comes with one condition – as he fights to end mental health discrimination.
    He used the example of mothers who suffer from postnatal depression being refused income protection by some institutions.

    “That is clearly discriminatory and it does clearly play into adding to the stigma associated with these things and stopping people from getting the treatment they need to intervene early,” Senator O’Brien told AM.

    “When you have 45 per cent of Australians anticipated to have some sort of mental ill health throughout their life, and then you’ve got insurance companies discriminating in the way they do, that must have an effect on our country.”

  2. Harquebus

    I saw that segment on theDRUM. I believe it was when Adams stated that if you believe Oswald was a lone gunmen then…. something or other. The host dismissed it as conspiracy theory displaying in the process her ignorance, gullibility and conditioning for all to see. What a moron she is.
    In my opinion, all of theDRUM’s hosts are short of a quid. Fools every one of them.

  3. Freethinker

    IMO it looks like that will be multiple divorces which they started with Bernardi move.
    I m looking with interest which faction is going to dominate the Liberal party in the future, will be the moderates or the extreme right?
    There some with in the Nationals that do dot support Barnaby, where they will go?

  4. Terry2

    Certainly in Queensland talk of de-merging the LNP is openly being discussed after the abysmal performance of the combined parties in the state election.

    Traditional regional National party supporters have nothing in common with the big city Liberals and having merged their interests with the objective of making the LNP a Conservative powerhouse has proved to be a fizzer.

  5. Terry2


    Ellen Fanning, the Drum host you are referring to is an informed, experienced and intelligent professional as is Julia Baird another Drum host.

    They have to deal with a motley crew of guests which, for balance, frequently includes nut-jobs and they handle them with respect but have to be firm when some of them, like Adams, depart planet earth.

    You may find the Millionaires’ Hot seat on Ch9 at the same time more to your liking.

  6. nurses1968

    Could be time for The Nats with their rural background to start to talk to the Greens and encourage them to get their environmental mojo back. You think the would have more in common ,environmentally than than the current Lib/Nat arrangement
    The Libs will go right to attract the PHON vote so maybe it’s time for the Nats to reassess their position and even consider trying to woo Robbie Katter and his couple of members to form a trio

  7. Harquebus

    All I will say is, I disagree totally with your assessment of theDRUM hosts.
    The ABC as a whole is mostly just another propaganda machine. Q&A last Monday night was another example. Puke presented as informed opinion. Ha!
    BTW: ‘Who wants to be a millionaire’ is, in my opinion, rigged. I only watch it sometimes because, my neighbor who, brews his own beer and shares it, luvs it.

  8. Frank Smith

    The LNP merger in Qld resulted in Newman and Nicholls as Party leaders. That turned out well didn’t it! Even the Borg was far more acceptable.

  9. Freethinker

    After this result in Qld,looks tome that have to be the political end for Lawrence Springborg and his idea of merging.

  10. Frank Smith

    There was one outstanding panelist on Q&A – Lenore Taylor. But the nut from the Coalition tried dominating everything in typical motor mouth fashion.

  11. Shogan

    “I have always said that men have never really grown”

    I’m not too sure it’s about growing up, I think it’s more to do with how they think & unfortunately most men think with the wrong head, I like to think with the head that sits on my shoulders & not the one that hangs between my legs!!

  12. Kaye Lee

    As was mentioned on the Drum, there is systemic inequality with regards to women. These revelations have made me think about what I have endured through my lifetime. As Ellen Fanning pointed out, sexual harassment was just par for the course. It never occurred to me to make official complaints about being groped or about men making crude remarks – it happened every day. I just got very good at forcefully telling men to f*ck off.

  13. Matters Not

    Freethinker re the merger of the Nats and the Libs and a bit of history thrown in. It was the brainchild of Springborg and Greg Jackson his Press Secretary and jogging partner (now deceased.) It was actioned through the political skills of Springborg’s Chief of Staff Jake Smith.

    They had visited Canada and thought the merger there was a blueprint for what could be achieved in Queensland.

    The merger was supposed to see the Nats swallow the Libs but it was the Nats who ended up in the supporting role. There were wide (political) cultural differences between them then (hate was not too strong a word) and time has not lessened the enmity. The Nats are driven by what works. They have little time for political principles and not encumbered by intellectual theorising. Indeed they are quite shallow. But they are very flexible and very successful in their bailiwicks. They are driven by whatever it takes. Barnaby is a classic example.

    Of interest is the re emergence of Vaughan Johnson, the former member for Gregory who hated the Libs, in particular the white shoe Gold Coast Liberals. When he was on the turps, he was particularly vocal. The Strangers’ Bar witnessed some memorable outbursts. He is now calling for a demerger.

  14. Freethinker

    Thank you Matters Not for your information. I was living in Qld when Springborg was the leader of the Nationals and I remember well that he went to some difficulties to convince members of his party that a merge was the way to go.

  15. Geoff Andrews

    The LNP is a Same Sects Marriage of convenience between two parties who have always hated each other.

  16. whserlockscottholmes

    Pfft. John McEwen said, ‘never stand between a farmer and a bucket of money.’ More accurately, he should have said ‘never stand between a cushy job and a Pitt Steet Pastoralist. They won’t go – they need the seats.

  17. Harry

    “Anyway it seems he has found $100 million in the form of commitment to building a transport hub in the electorate. Amazing where it comes from when it’s needed”.

    That’s because it is created by keystrokes, it is spent into existence, nothing more.And our income taxes, GST and CGT goes nowhere because the money is destroyed. Given the federal government’s capabilities there is always enough money but maybe not enough “things and labour to buy” as that is a finite resource. Real resources are never infinite.

    So please question the entire paradigm about federal taxes and who pays.

  18. Terry2

    You really have to wonder what is the point of having politicians who abstain from voting . Those who abstained in the Senate today on marriage equality were:


    Michaelia Cash (abstained)
    David Fawcett (abstained)
    James McGrath (abstained)
    Zed Seselja (abstained) ​
    Bridget McKenzie (abstained)


    Deb O'Neill (abstain)


    Pauline Hanson (abstained)
    Peter Georgiou (abstained

  19. Kaye Lee

    I just listened to the first speech by new Greens Senator Jordan Steele-John. It was outstanding. For a brief moment I felt hope again.

  20. wam

    WowmLord, you had been voting for 6 years before you began following politics?
    Some of us were gagging to vote. I missed out in 61 but have been rabid follower, since beginning with the bully boys pig-iron bob and playford.

    Do you know, Lord, how rich we are compared to the poms or trudeau’s lot?

    The redneck’s lament is ‘no foreign aid till all vets are housed’ Is that not a priority?

    How is trump’s presidency going in the unemployment and economy stakes?

    At last, Lord, trumbull spoke the truth: “Kristina Keneally wants us to bring all of those asylum seekers from Manus [Island] to Australia.

    PHON got 300K LNP lost 200k and Labor lost 100k on the 2015 results???

    The murd is as it sounds, at times riaf, but you have to netsil to saib first. I give it a modicum of boredom then switch to letters and numbers.
    Arguably on most nights the quiz shows are more informative than the drum.

    shogun it is the gun that is the reason men are on earth the society ads the arrogant superiority and the women stand ready to receive. When the green white and purple sink males like burke, the rabbott and drag the religious women out of servitude we will become a worthwhile society??

  21. Frank Smith

    wam, what in the hell are you trying to say? That drivel is incomprehensible?

  22. David1

    Frank I know something, warm is a rude ignorant sod. His continued use of Lord when referring to John Lord is not on. An apology and smartening himself up wouldn’t go astray. It may be funny and smart to him, her, it…I find it pathetic.
    Gagging to vote? I have a better idea about a gag.

  23. wam

    Dear Frank,
    The Lord is always on about telling the truth well trumball told the truth and i was congratulating him on the Lord’s behalf

    The qld election lnp lost 200000votes labor 100000 votes ans pauline hanson one nation took extra 300000 votes so labor and the lnp in qld fell victim to PHON

    drum=murd which sounds like merde the show is occasionally fair in a backhand way raif when I get bored I switch a la terry2

    the last piece just denotes getting a personal weapons into a warm dark hole is in the oxygen, water, energy and in some men the gun certainly rules as a reflex not requiring thought. Kaye got good a ‘f*ck off’ but trump pussy grabbing is tolerated and I am suggesting the kaye style could come under the green/white.purple of women 100 years ago

    But I do speak drivel because the truth is awful.but the ‘nut’ you mention is the norm at all levels of Australian society. The acceptance of sexism allows the burkes, harrises and hughes to exceed their arrogance and slip silently into depravity.

  24. Frank Smith

    The first rule for engaging in dialogue is to express yourself in terms that others clearly understand. “Drivel” does not fit that rule. The result is that you risk being totally ignored – please take heed!

  25. wam

    thanks frank but it is too late i am resigned to drivel and writing what is true to me but not worth more than a glance to others.

    How can someone who thinks the rabbott believes he is god’s work and everything he says is true to god’s purpose ie amoral not immoral

    How can someone who has seen rashomon but laugh at the Lord wanting politicians to tell the truth? Be honest perhaps but tell the truth?

    How can someone who thinks di nat, bran, sim, kim are slimy greedy pragmatists without the principles of fair play. Fit in here?

    Dialogue??? This is not the place for dialogue just opinion some with facts real or imaginary some with memory accurate or faulty.

    see drivel I am good at!!!

    Sadly, dialogue may have been an option last century before the worst arsehole ever to be elected became PM.

    My children and their children are set so what I think I write.

  26. James

    Politicians….yeah I’m done with them all, it doesn’t matter what garbage they spew it’ll change the moment there elected as we’ve seen all to often, so, a POX on all their houses, their isn’t one of them worth the oxygen they use

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