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Day to Day Politics: Who is winning the citizenship debate?

Friday 8 December 2017

The comments arising from my post yesterday were wide and varied. Here are a few that support either side of my argument.

Neil Hogan – Facebook

“The fact that Shorten was so adamant that Labor had no problems has turned into an own goal, whether the government can add to that score is entirely up to the MSM”

Doozie Feutrill

“Disappointed John! You have been quick to jump on the LIEBERALS bandwagon re Labor and the citizenship saga! Four of Labors MP had completed and submitted their renunciation papers prior to nominating. The delay came only in the responses from the other countries. So all reasonable steps were taken which is what Shorten has said with the exception of Feeney who claims he can’t find his paperwork.”

Neil Mitchell (prominent Victorian 3AW radio commentator)

Yesterday Neil said “Shorten has a problem here re dual citizenship. He has either been conned or he has lied to the Australian people. Both are unacceptable. His road to the Lodge has now become more difficult.”

Joe Hildebrand writing for says that Shorten is the superior tactical politician. Over time this has proven so.

“This is Bill Shorten’s 1812 Overture and he is playing the Prime Minister like a violin. Labor didn’t create the citizenship crisis but it knows too well the infamous political mantra that you should never let a crisis go to waste. If that involves sacrificing a few pawns to get to checkmate then it’s even more of a no-brainer. Labor will cop a kick up the arse over its own fiasco, but it has already kicked the government square in the nuts.”

On reading the many comments on both THE AIMN and Facebook, I am forced to examine my words, because having the ability to admit that you are wrong is an absolute prerequisite to discernment and knowledge. And I am wrong, in so much as it would seem that Labor is more right than the Coalition in submitting their renunciation papers. I would also have to agree that Shorten is the better tactical politician.

However, when I raise points like those that follow I cannot see where I am wrong. The crux of what I was saying was a criticism of how we practice politics. These are arguments for a superior way. The moral way in which we do it. The way that the people are reacting against. Whichever way you look at it, the present practice still looks grubby. Endeavouring to change it, I think, is a very worthwhile pursuit. People who know me and read more deeply would know that.

“Why is it our politicians cannot raise themselves above the petty nonsense they squabble about and govern for the common good?”

“It is the very reason voters are deserting mainstream parties. They are all playing this stupid political game believing that they are actually fooling us. For God sake grow up. You are not fooling us at all. Why do you think you are? All Bill Shorten is doing is enhancing the appetite of those who think he is shifty.”

“To see two graduates of Oxford yesterday acting like adolescents going through puberty was a shameful sight to behold. No matter what side of politics you support we should all be appalled at the behaviour of our politicians.”

My thought for the day.

“It seems to me that the wisest people I know are the ones that apply reason and logic, and leave room for doubt. The most unwise are the fools and fanatics who don’t.’’


  1. Alpo

    We live in a speedy, media-dominated world. It’s through the media that the people get their information, hints to think about issues and pats in the back to reach specific conclusions. In the past it was the word of mouth from fellow town people, now it’s radio, TV, newspapers and, above all, the internet.

    But what’s truly amazing is that in spite of the Liberal party traditional domination of the media (with the exception of the internet), it’s the ALP that has been relentlessly ahead in the polls, and the personal fortunes of Malcolm Turnbull have been constantly plunging in the polls from the highs he achieved in the immediate aftermaths of his “assassination” of Tony Abbott. The “attack Labor” strategy is not working, the “kill Bill” strategy is not working either…. why? Because the People are realising that Labor listen and act, even by changing many of their views that they held dear in the past (see the relentless abandonment of the old Neoliberalism that characterised the Hawke-Keating governments). The Liberals are still more Neoliberal than ever…. they don’t listen, they cannot listen, because they have nothing else but Neoliberalism and Conservatism to define their identity and policies.

  2. lawrencesroberts

    When I was in the Labor party they were very strict about citizenship for potential candidates. The current crop of doubtfull candidates all made strenuous efforts to renounce and the high court precedent would say that they may be in the clear. M.T. gets it wrong again?

  3. Ella miller

    Having watched Parliament for the past few days, I believe Feeny did produce one set of documents..but should have produced two.So it is conceivable that he does have the other but can’t find it. Especially if these documents are 10 years old. BUT? I know this is mostly about Shorten..but how many LNP did NOT produce or refused to produce documents? The one document that was produced was dated that morning??? Labor has referred their members to the High Court…the Liberals voted against joint referral.
    I agree that what has been going on in our Parliament has been ludicrous. But seeing we are comparing performance, then let us look at the Question Time. ( I know it is theatre) BUT even theatre has an element of truth. I will only reflect on the last week, and in particular the last QT. Labor asked questions on policy and policy failure. Whereas the LNP Questions ended up being used as an election campaign for Bennelong.(sp?) Even a question about agriculture
    A part of Shorten’s speech when the final vote was taken will stay with me forever and is a reflection of the man. he said “we have not given you a gift, you have given Australia a gift” By comparison the only thing lacking from Malcolm’s celebration was the usual selfie.

  4. Terry2

    Turnbull just wants this issue to go away and if it is raised again in 2018 he will accuse Labor of sour grapes.

    It is failry clear that there are several coalition members who need to have the High Court check their situation : Turnbull himself has said that only the High Court can rule on this.

    Incidentally, I notice that Tony Abbott left the parliament before the final vote on same Sex Marriage, he didn’t abstain in the conventional way he just went missing : any Warringah voters out there ? What do you think of the actions of your elected member ?

  5. Michael Fairweather

    Turdbull is fighting for his future and will use any dirty trick to get it his way, even now he will go down in Australian history as the worst Prime Minister. For any Politician who cant read and understand the Constitution is beyond me, My education was limited and yet I can understand the relevant clause in our Constitution very well. How he can treat the people on Welfare that badly I cannot imagine and to attack our seniors is just too much. But basically all the problems Turdbull is facing is of his own making and he seems to be determined to make us all suffer.

  6. Glenn K

    you justifiably complain “Why is it our politicians cannot raise themselves above the petty nonsense they squabble about and govern for the common good?”
    I sense you lumping all of them in the same boat, but I would like to point something out that you are well aware of…….there seemed genuine surprise at how well Shorten performed at the last election, and how close the ALP came to making the LNP a one term government after getting so badly wiped out in the previous election. Shorten campaigned on policy. The LNP campaigned with hollow slogans. I often read comments about Shorten being a “policy wonk” – almost as a term of derision. He is so perfect for what Australia needs!
    …and just a final comment….I moved to France 7 months ago. From afar, Australia seems even more corrupt. Seriously. Australia is like one of many African countries where a corrupt elite rapes the country of its resources and the political class live like royalty. Africa gets reported on the news here – the similarities are staggering. I mean really – the PM of Australia is an ex merchant banker with money tucked away in a tax haven and none of the voters seem to give a shit. corrupt. there’s no other word for it.

  7. Jagger

    Well John it’s easy to see why the LNP believe they can win the next election, they have done nothing but drag down debate in our Parliament since Abbott was elected as their leader, what a short memory you appear to have “ditch the witch” “put her in a chaff bag and drop her out to sea” “her father died of shame” just some of the headlines appearing around Australia every week.
    Turnbull’s complete disregard for our democracy and laws, his management of the economy and his persecution of those worst off in our society is a disgrace, not too mention his stance on equal rights for all Australians, eg SSM where he refused to campaign, even supported an amendment to appease his RW Neanderthals who cost us $100 million which may have been spent on various necessary causes.
    Turnbull has proven to be a bigger liar then Abbott and claims Labor initiatives are his, a narcissistic sociopath.
    To suggest that Labor and Bill Shorten are as guilty for what our parliament has become is a slur on every Labor supporter.

  8. Vixstar

    Thanks to kingmaker Rupert we are stuck with Muggabe Malcom, all they have to do is screech in the right direction and the media goes beserk take Sam and then look at Robb robbing Australia of its port in Darwin and then getting paid by the Chinese $800,000.

  9. Woaijuguo

    I had renounced my Malaysian citizenship in January 2017 personally at its Consulate and to date I had not received any confirmation.

    Based on that experience I am inclined to think that those Labour MPs should not be faulted.

  10. wam

    Dear Lord,
    Was doozie avoiding your truth? Do you think the labor pollies lied when they signed the nomination form knowing that they were dual citizens? Could it be they truly believed they were not dual citizens, despite having no evidence? So they may have signed truthfully?

    Why did they let billy preen in front of the media about labor processes then leave him hanging?

    Is it reasonable for people, who follow your logic, to seem wise, to you?

    Is it reasonable for people, who accept hanson’s logic, to seem unwise to you?

    What about vice versa?

    this is from a post on my facebook.

    “I dont understand why the greens labor and all our government doesnt sit up and take notice of what you say your the only one that has us Australians back and you are the only one that listens to us and fights for what we want I enjoy what you have to say your the only one tnat makes sence thanks for caring ♥♡”

    Is this person too unintelligent to have her reasoning and logic, for voting for hanson, counted as truth??

  11. John Lord

    Wam. Why speak in riddles?

  12. Kaye Lee

    Reasoning, logic and truth have NOTHING to do with voting for Hanson.

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