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Hockey plays chicken with the back bench

Did Hockey really just “threaten” a Double Dissolution? Dare we hope? You can literally hear the collective gasp of anticipation rippling out over social media. The mere possibility we may be able to get out of our electoral contract with “Hobott” (yes I just made a couple contraction of Hockey/Abbott…), before they manage to totally wreck the joint has people right across the nation on the edge of optimism for the first time in months.

Much as I would love to join them in preemptive celebration, I’m fairly certain Hockey is bluffing. It looks to me like “Hobott” are, in the absence of any better plan, playing chicken with their own back bench, and what we have here is an empty threat designed to put the fear of impending unemployment into their own MPs.

Like all new parents, Hobott are deeply proud of their first born budget, and would do almost anything to save its little life; however I believe they will stop well short of a family suicide pact, and opt instead to turn off its life support, and hope their second child might fare a little better.

While Hobott have yet to give up on their first born, (like all good parents, they are prepared to fight like caged tigers to see their child survive, no matter what the collateral damage), Hockey’s recent rhetoric on the senate;

. . . it is disrupting the role of government but if it just continually says no without any capacity to negotiate an improved outcome, then the Senate becomes irrelevant,” he said. “It’s simply a roadblock. We either have to smash through that roadblock or the Australian people get the chance to change the government.

… is just their latest desperate salvo in a fight they are now beginning realise they may not be able to win.

Admittedly it’s a brazen move, playing chicken with a DD when the polls are looking totally hideous for them; but I predict Hobott will blink first and abandon their much unloved bruiser of a budget in favor of a more mild mannered progeny.

As Liberal elder statesman Malcom Fraser famously pointed out on QA, “Tony Abbott would do what he needed to do to have power“. According to Fraser Abbott is man who is capable of Olympic level back flips on policy… so watch this space!

on Twitter.

More articles by Letitia McQuade:

Abbott’s war on the environment is facing some tough opposition.

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THE CLIMATE OF DENIAL: Why real climate action will NEVER come from big business or government.


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  1. Ken McGrath

    How dare Hockey accuse the Senate of becoming irrelevant if they block his horror budget! The senate is elected by the people so are we the voters irrelevant??? The senate is the peoples house of review, it is there expressly to stop this kind of ideological attack on the people by a viscous, mean spirited, government which is only there to serve the interests of the rich and big business!!!

  2. DanDark

    We are doomed
    I wouldn’t get to excited about a DD, I saw the rabid dog, screaming at the reporters
    It won’t happen folks, they will do anything to screw this country, the election was rigged, pretty obvious now, boxes of votes missing, votes found in strange places, just ask Kath McGowan who pipped dopey mirabella in Indi
    And they won’t give up that easily, few I dependants on their side and whammy
    But anyways, this country has been screwed for years
    It’s all just come to a nazi head in last 8 months, extermination is only word in their pamphlets….

  3. John921Fraser


    I saw the response from Bowen when he was asked by the media to comment on Hockeys suggestion that he would bust through the Senate or Australia would have to vote to change the government.

    What did Bowen say ?

    Did he say …. "We will fight for Australians to get a fair go".

    Did he say … "well Australia hates Hockeys Budget".

    Did he say … "Hockeys Budget hurts Pensioners, the sick and the youth of Australia and we will fight him on that".

    No !

    Bowen, just like the rest of Labor just have no idea how much the electorate understands how Hockeys Budget is going to hurt them ….. Labor has no idea just how angry the electorate is.

    Labor has no idea of how to harness the anger that the electorate is feeling and use it to ramp up the pressure on Abbott.

    Just look at Lateline last night and see how worried the Nats are and how they are going against Abbott with his Parenting scheme.

    The Nats are doing a better job of pressuring Abbott than anyone other party ….. with the possible exception of Palmer, and he is keeping his cards close, it remains to be seen if Palmers hatred of Abbott will overtake his love of conservatism.

    Shorten should have his troops out there pressuring Abbotts gang … across a wide front …. to go to a Double Dissolution to test their "policies" with the Australian electorate.

    Lets have the knock down, drag them out kicking and screaming election we should have had in 2013.

  4. Joy Cooper

    Typical Joe Hockey. He’s now showing his true bombastic arrogance, with his chin out, don’t-you-dare-challenge-me bluff & bluster. No more Mr Nice Guy, if he ever was. He is now a truly nasty, mendacious little Liberal with all of their smug born-to-rule pomposity.

    Hope ICAC looks into the North Sydney Liberal Party’s fund-raising activities more thoroughly.

  5. DanDark

    It won’t happen,
    Bowen can say all he wants it won’t happen
    Liberals have the country by the balls, mats are faaaarkin useless
    I know I have one that represents my electorate, we get nothing, only the faaaarking farmers
    All about the farmers, and all ways will be, it’s a game to these murderous men

  6. DanDark

    Mats, Nats same sing, libs door mats that’s all

  7. Sir ScotchMistery

    This is a time to start the process of getting independents lined up for proper “service” to the people.

    30 on the cross-bench will make them sit up and take note.

    #avoice4indi #indishares are the tags we will need for the next choice of corrupt “leaders”.

  8. Stu

    You may have slightly overdone the child metaphor there, but I agree with you otherwise. We can only hope!

  9. Florence nee Fedup

    Senators are supposed to represent the rights of the states.

  10. Terry2

    In the last 48 hours both Abbott and Hockey have said words to the effect that :

    ” if it’s alright ( for men) to receive holiday pay, sick pay and long service leave pay as a workplace entitlement then why isn’t it alright for a mother to receive parental leave pay as a workplace entitlement”.

    Would somebody please ask the question or explain to these men that the aforementioned workplace entitlements are paid by employers and that is what workplace entitlements are all about.

    We already have a system that pays the minimum wage (now $640 a week) as a community entitlement (i.e. everybody gets the same and that’s equitable) for 18 weeks and that is the way government can assist ; anything beyond that should be at the expense of the employer and thus a connection between employer and employee is maintained – isn’t that the idea rather than an unfair hierarchy of mother’s income funded by the taxpayer ?

    Abbott is known as a very stubborn man – must be a nightmare to live with – but isn’t it time that somebody sat him down and explained how welfare and workplace entitlements differ.

  11. Lost2

    I couldn’t agree more, the PPL on offer will be paid by the taxpayer, those who say any different have their heads in the sand, just look at how it is to be funded, business pay a 1.5% levy, but not all businesses, and yet in the budget business were given a 1.5% reduction in tax, this reduction in tax is a loss of revenue, which the 1.5% for the PPL will not cover as not all businesses pay. Any loss in revenue has to made up to fund policies which the PPL is, it is not a workplace entitlement, as the taxpayer now has to flip the bill, it is welfare by another name to those of calibre, that comes at a cost to the unemployed, sick, pensioners, single parents and those who are disabled, those are now left to struggle and deeper below the poverty line.

  12. Mike Wilkinson

    This could be a win / win situation for the electorate.
    If a DD IS called we get the chance to boot them out. Win.
    If Hockeys bluff makes a backbencher / crossbencher change their mind, then they have outed themselves as in parliament to feather their nest, not to serve the people by standing their ground. Those who change their minds will go at the next election .Also a win.

  13. Lee

    “I increasingly suspect an Asbergers test might be in order for this man.”

    Hokey does not have Aspergers. Many people with AS are unemployed (estimated approx 85%) and find themselves amongst the marginalised group that the LNP is targeting. People with AS also tend to have a strong sense of social justice, fairness and are generally honest. The LNP style of politics goes against the grain for these people.

  14. Stephen Tardrew

    Hokey plays chicken?
    Hockey is himself fowl so I think he will get a long quite well with chickens and might I say cowards and fools a well.
    Love your wealthy Christian neighbors as yourself then screw the rest.
    What jovial and well met fellow this one has turned out to be.
    It always seemed obvious to me that the under the TV persona was a creep waiting to get out and he has certainly succeeded.
    Mr Sweaty Man – the anger induced cauldron of resentment for those who would dare be poor and homeless.
    Well his playing chicken with the automotive sector worked a treat didn’t it and I have a feeling he may be in for more of the same.
    Lets hope so.
    Could anyone in their right mind think that these power obsessed oligarchs would, for a moment, consider a Double Dissolution.
    Everyone, bar no one, thinks he has the courage to face the music.
    This is the strategy of a blustering egotists who thinks he can do no wrong.

  15. Vivien Fleming

    Ishe Boge, I agree with Lee. Abbott doesn’t exhibit a single autistic characteristic and certainly is devoid of the strong sense of justice that most Aspergians have. Abbott does, however, aptly display the characteristics of a psychopath. Check out this list of 46 characteristics of a psychopath. I think the list has him nailed.

    These apply to males and females.
    1. Self-centered. His needs are paramount.

    2. No remorse for mistakes or misdeeds.

    3. Unreliable, undependable.

    4. Does not care about the consequences of his actions.

    5. Projects faults on to others. High blaming behavior; never his fault.

    6. Little if any conscience.

    7. Insensitive to needs and feelings of others.

    8. Has a good front (persona) to impress and exploit others.

    9. Low stress tolerance. Easy to anger and rage.

    10. People are to be manipulated for his needs.

    11. Rationalizes easily. Twists conversation to his gain at other’s expense. If trapped, keeps talking, changes the subject or gets angry.

    12. Pathological lying.

    13. Tremendous need to control situations, conversations, others.

    14. No real values. Mostly situational.

    15. Often perceived as caring and understanding and uses this to manipulate.

    16. Angry, mercurial, moods.

    17. Uses sex to control

    18. Does not share ideas, feelings, emotions.

    19. Conversation controller. Must have the first and last word.

    20. Is very slow to forgive others. Hangs onto resentment.

    21. Secret life. Hides money, friends, activities.

    22. Likes annoying others. Likes to create chaos and disrupt for no reason.

    23. Moody – switches from nice guy to anger without much provocation.

    24. Repeatedly fails to honor financial obligations.

    25. Seldom expresses appreciation.

    26. Grandiose. Convinced he knows more than others and is correct in all he does.

    27. Lacks ability to see how he comes across to others. Defensive when confronted with his behavior. Never his fault.

    28. Can get emotional, tearful. This is about show or frustration rather than sorrow.

    29. He breaks woman’s spirits to keep them dependent.

    30. Needs threats, intimidations to keep others close to him.

    31. Sabotages partner. Wants her to be happy only through him and to have few or no outside interests and acquaintances.

    32. Highly contradictory.

    33. Convincing. Must convince people to side with him.

    34. Hides his real self. Always “on”

    35. Kind only if he’s getting from you what he wants.

    36. He has to be right. He has to win. He has to look good.

    37. He announces, not discusses. He tells, not asks.

    38. Does not discuss openly, has a hidden agenda.

    39. Controls money of others but spends freely on himself.

    40. Unilateral condition of, “I’m OK and justified so I don’t need to hear your position or ideas”

    41. Always feels misunderstood.

    42. You feel miserable with this person. He drains you.

    43. Does not listen because he does not care.

    44. His feelings are discussed, not the partners.

    45. Is not interested in problem-solving.

    46. Very good at reading people, so he can manipulate them. Sometimes called gaslighting.

    Source: https://www.psychopathfree.com/showthread.php?347-46-traits-of-a-psychopath

  16. Diannaart

    …According to Fraser Abbott is man who is capable of Olympic level back flips on policy…

    No matter Abbott’s gymnastic flair – he is incapable of backflipping to human.

  17. Ishe Boge

    Lee, I was referring to Tony Abbott and he has all those traits you mentioned along with the Liberal ideology. And Vivian, I believe that Tony is incapable of being that cunning to carry those traits of a psychopath. The way he is, is not by design or manipulated at all. My comment was based on observation and some compassion. I lived with an Aspie for 12 years. Same gait, same aversion to looking people in the eye, and definitely uncomfortable socially. Opens up a whole new can of worms though doesn’t it ….

  18. Hotspringer

    Further to A bott’s PPL, most if not all of women on such high incomes already have good parental leave from their employers. Those companies will now be able to scrap the parental leave component and shift the cost onto the taxpayer.

  19. Roslyn Ross

    It won’t happen. Abbott and co., know they would lose in an election this year. They want time to see if they can get their Budget through and then throw money at people before the next election. I wonder though if they will be forgiven as easily as they think. On the plus side, it is too soon. Let them kick a few more ‘own goals’ before we have an election and Labor needs to get its house and head in order anyway before they have a chance at getting back in.

  20. corvus boreus

    In the Abbott profile sweepstakes, I’d like to throw in sadistic sociopathy with pathological narcissism.
    He seems to enjoy causing pain, physical, emotional and financial, doesn’t give a scat for social cohesion or wellbeing, and just loves how he looks strutting in lycra.
    Re Ishe Boge’s photo link, either they don’t trust his hand hygiene, or for some reason they all just don’t like him.

  21. MIssPamela

    He does NOT have Asperger’s. Not all people with Asperger’s are the same, although they generally do not lie and have, as Lee said, a strong sense of fairness and social justice. As Dr Stephen Shore said “If you have met one person with Autism, you have met one person with Autism”.
    Abbott certainly lies and has no sense of fairness or social justice. However, I think this fits him well – The Dark Triad – Machavellianism / Narcissism and Psychopathy.

    Understanding The Dark Triad – A General Overview

  22. Eileen Dixon

    In regard to the PPL, it seems to me that rich people are being paid to have sex, apart from that in all my 75 years on this mortal coil I have never experienced such a cruel government, I am afraid that we are going to lose a lot of our young people it breaks my heart. Hockey and Abbott leave the young, old and defenceless alone!!!! Get your dirty money from your wealthy friends who are too smart to pay tax, I live in hope that our senators will do the right thing by us all. Abbott has just swanned around the world on our money, did he really have to go to Canada? Texas? Hawaii, what did he achieve? a damn hat to hide his vacant head in. By the way why was Peta with him where the hell is Margie?

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