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Day to Day Politics: Two weeks of mayhem.

Tuesday 19 June 2018

After further consideration and another clue I am prepared to say that it is still possible to have a federal election in September or October.

The next two weeks of the sitting of the Parliament the Government has a full agenda and noticeably missing is a bill to ban foreign donations.

The Prime Minister has advised he will make an apology to the children found to have been abused by the Royal Commission on 22 October. It could be delayed or bought forward if a snap election were considered to be in the Government’s best interests.

If it were to win the Government might do something about foreign donations in its next term, but why would it forego the millions it could collect for this one? And Malcolm wouldn’t be inclined to put his hand in his own pocket again. For Labor’s part it gave up this generous cash cow 18 months ago whereas the Liberal Party has its hand out to anyone who needs a favour or two, including the Chinese, which is said to be about $3 million. Note no other comparative democracies accept foreign donations.

The bill seems to have disappeared into a black hole of the Government’s own digging. Special Minister of State Mathias Cormann denies the Government is being deliberate sluggish with it.

It’s just that next election is top of mind and takes precedence over anything else. Of course, the Government runs the risk of a public backlash given the current talk of interference in our domestic politics.

Early in the New Year it is believed that the Prime Minister told the Party Room that it was in a strong position to attack Labor on National security. Shorten though is making it difficult by agreeing with anything he says on the subject:

“But efforts to paint the Opposition as weak in this area are undermined by selectivity. This is especially the case in light of government ministers frequently quoting our domestic spy chief, the Australian Security Intelligence Organisation’s Duncan Lewis, warning that foreign interference in our domestic politics is now at unprecedented levels. This is a claim we are expected to take at face value, as there has been no evidence put forward to substantiate it.”

On Insiders Sunday 10 June Attorney-General Christian Porter talked about this threat, making it perfectly clear that it needed urgent attention before the next farce in our democratic procedures: the citizenship by-elections.

The left-wing advocacy group GetUp! says:

“ … this is exactly what the government is doing, even in this amended legislation. Its national director, Paul Oosting, says the suggestion that it is about reducing offshore influence in our political system “is a farce”. At its core, he says, this legislation is an attempt to protect the Turnbull government from criticism from its own citizens. Very broad definitions of national security, sabotage and espionage catch in their net demonstrations, sit-ins, whistleblowers and investigative journalists. All are liable to new fines or jail terms.”

It is nothing more than an attempt to wedge Labor using the most draconian legislation possible. An imperative leading up to, and into the upcoming campaigns is that national security be front of mind in the electorate. If that means scaring people, then so be it.

The Coalition – since 2013 – have brought in more security bills than they have had people charged under them. It believes national security is one of weaknesses. Personally, I would suggest that after 34 Newspoll losses it is one of the Coalition’s.

On the one hand if Turnbull were to win the three seats it is contesting he would most likely call a general election. Mind you, he would have to defy history to do it. On the other hand if he lost all three, his leadership would come into contention.

Conversely, if Labor were to lose both Braddon in Tasmania and Longman in Queensland then Shorten might find his leadership in a spot of bother with Albo sitting in the wings just waiting. Whatever happens, it will give us some insight into how the electorate is thinking.

My thought for the day

“The real enemy of neo conservative politics in Australia is not Labor or indeed democratic socialism. It is simply what Australians affectionately call. A fair go.”

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  1. Maxoz

    You mention Truffles putting his hand in his own pocket at the last election. I have doubts regarding this donation. The “self” payment was made only a couple of days after a meeting with a certain Indian coal mining gentleman.

  2. Terence Mills

    It’s all in the words you use as ex lawyer Turnbull well knows.

    It is not coalition policy to privatise or sell the ABC

    Mr Murdoch breathes a sigh of relief as he has never had any intention of actually buying the ABC, his instructions to the coalition are to degrade and handicap the ABC by curtailing and restricting its funding and thus reducing it to a national broadcaster in name only.
    Mr Murdoch’s only outlays will be to offer introductory concessional subscriptions to Foxtel and Sky as that is where he sees the future of broadcasting in Australia.

    You will notice that in all the denials the PM and others have made, at no point have they committed to restoring funding to the ABC

  3. wam

    Sadly, a fair go today means others get a fair share after I have taken my cut.
    I believe the economic management is the killer
    (I wrote many times to shorten, pliberesek and bowen about claiming the AAA rating when the debt was doubled and many times here but it is now the son of a small car who also claims old age pension is welfare not an entitlement.)

    Albo has had his chance. Should losses occur, shorten will go and labor will need to work on 2022 with plibersek or ?

    Mr Lord:
    I give can anyone vote for this:
    The tax cuts mean big business get $60 billion.
    The ABC headlines the tax cuts insure the majority pay only 32.5%.
    The median worker gets $66000 and the small business median is $62000 that is a long bracket creep?
    The pollie that votes for this tax cut pockets 5 thousand dollars those workers and owners who earn less than $87001 get NOTHING.
    Where is my mistake??
    (sorry for the social media bit but Helvetyni we are so happy our grandson has an exchange in Finland next year,)

  4. Stephen G B

    Yes Terence Mills – I could not agree more.

  5. Mick Byron

    Sorry for the long reply but the Libs know exactly what they want and how to do the ABC/SBS in
    At the recent Conference

    The Young Liberals put forward the motion “That federal council calls for the full privatisation of the Australian Broadcasting Corporation, except for services into regional areas that are not commercially viable” and on a more than 2 to 1 show of hands the council voted in favour this motion.

    Council delegate Mitchell Collier, federal vice president of the Young Liberals, asserted there was no economic case to keep the broadcaster in public hands.

    He stated to the meeting that; “There are several ways we could privatise the ABC – we could sell it to a media mogul, a media organisation, the government could sell it on the stock market….Privatising it would save the federal budget $1 billion a year, could pay off debt and would enhance, not diminish, the Australian media landscape.”

    Four members of the party’s federal executive voted in favour of the call for privatisation – Federal Liberal vice-presidents Karina Okotel and Trish Worth, Young Liberal president Josh Manuatu and vice president Mitchell Collier who moved the motion. Incoming Federal Liberal vice-president NSW member Teena McQueen also voted for privatisation.

    The federal council also voted in favour of an efficiency review of the SBS network.

    After the vote became public two Institute of Public Affairs (IPA) members made statements to the media.

    RMIT University professor and IPA Senior Research Fellow Sinclair Davidson said privatisation of the ABC should be the “default” Coalition policy as the Liberals were the party of small government which supported private enterprise.

    He also told Sky News that ‘Selling the ABC to Gina Rinehart would be magnificent’

    This fits nicely with Mining/IPA controlling Media content as outlined by the crazy Lord Monckton in 2012

  6. helvityni

    Wam, that’s nice to hear, I wish your grandson an interesting and rewarding year; he might even learn to ski….

    What’s the point of having the ABC, if its funding is cut to a bone; at the moment it’s basically all about recycling old series… I like Inspector Gently, but one viewing is enough…

    We stayed home on Saturday night, nothing worth watching, so I ended up turning to Socceroos versus the French team… ( I usually don’t follow any sport)…..

  7. Terence Mills

    The ABC are reporting a brawl at a Liberal Party meeting which has seen one man hospitalised after the brawl broke out at a cafe in Sydney’s south.

    “A senior Liberal Party source said the clash was “unprecedented” and a “tragic internal shit fight brought about by factional pettiness”.

    “Numerous people were seen running from Naji’s Cafe on Firth Street in Arncliffe after police were called just before 7:00pm”.

    “A NSW Liberal Party member, who said he was there, told the ABC another member tried to branch stack the meeting with outsiders.”

    This next election is going to be fundamental to the future of democracy in this country as the far-right complete their take over of the Liberal Party : if you reckon that the CFMEU have bovver boys you ain’t seen anything until you see what Abbott and Dutton have in store for us.

    At this stage Turnbull is trying to appease the right-wing of his party by giving Dutton control over migration, national security and the Australian Federal Police but that is not enough for these nut-jobs, they want absolute control and absolute power.

    Take care Australia, we are in very challenging and dangerous times.


  8. Glenn Barry

    OK so this is a wonderful insight – I’ve tried to listen to the garbage spewed forth by Porter in his attempt to induce hysteria about potential foreign interference in the by-election.

    I failed to hear him out, I will always fail to hear him out, one because he is a chronic gaslighter and in addition he’s a truly awful orator – form over content, in his case vocabulary over actual meaning.

    Are we dealing with many of the possible failure modes of lawyers that makes them suitable for the Liberal party?

    BUT, I have heard no-one, and I mean no-one challenge him over the missing foreign donations legislation, whilst he was inciting the hysteria, the hysterical call back at him should have been ‘AW MOY GAWD’ what about foreign donations.

  9. New England Cocky

    When a government has failed or no policies favouring Australian voters then the preferred strategy is to translocate their self-loathing onto the Opposition that has policies favouring Australian voters.

    Then you have the present added benefits of Toxic RAbbott and Barnyard Joke.

  10. diannaart

    How to Listen to Neo-con Nuff-nuffs 101:

    One strategy I use to actually try and listen to what an LNP coal-eater has to say is to make a private bet with myself as to when Labor will be blamed for something.

    Usually doesn’t take long, after all it is not as if the LNP has anything comprehensive and sustainable to offer by way of policies FOR the future of Australia.

    How to predict when Tony Abbott will say something venal AND stupid simultaneously 101:

    This is too easy; whenever Abbott opens his mouth to speak.

  11. Glenn Barry

    Dianaart, the Abbott game sounds fun, two people could play it like snap

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