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Malcolm Turnbull must resign

By David Tyler

The poor election showing of the Coalition should come as no surprise. Despite the growth fantasies of Federal Treasurer Scott Morrison who is out of his magic faraway tree, the economy is in an income recession while wages growth, as the ABS notes, “is now the lowest on record since the series was first published in September quarter 1998.” People are doing it hard.

Few Australians not among the top four percent promised a tax break would share Malcolm Turnbull’s view that there has never been a more exciting time to be Australian. Even fewer would see his mindless optimism as anything more than another sign he is out of touch.

No-one below the poverty line on an age pension or other Centrelink payment would welcome Morrison’s $2.3 billion welfare crackdown increasing already stressful delays and challenges in a toxic atmosphere of mutual mistrust. No-one is mad keen to vote for more war on the poor.

Nor are the times exciting to anyone in the job market. For all the ballyhoo, the hollow boast of 300,000 jobs created last year, the trend continues to part time poorly paid casual work where franchise workers are slave labour and women are underpaid just because they are women.

Job ads have been falling. Employment growth has stalled. More workers worry about losing their jobs than at any time since Turnbull became PM. And now, Turnbull’s double dissolution election fiasco, on top of his government’s dodgy budget estimates has earned a Standard and Poors credit downgrade – adding insecurity and instability to an anaemic economic climate.

His vacuous campaign slogan of “jobs and growth” was a con, a phrase to make palatable handouts to the wealthy. There never were any jobs on offer. Yet, to be fair, Turnbull’s Prime Ministership is itself only part of larger Liberal Party crisis of identity, policy and leadership.

Desperate to ditch Tony Abbott, Malcolm Turnbull’s backers gambled on a rank outsider with a patchy track record; an acclaimed orator who could also be a dithering windbag and a bore with a gift for talking himself up matched only by his capacity to talk down to or over others. His massive over confidence, his capacity to trust his own poor judgement has proved his undoing.

A self-alienating, weak leader, Turnbull’s surrender to the right to win power left him nothing to offer the electorate but an economic plan which consisted entirely of tax cuts for the rich. No wonder he ran dead, despite – or perhaps because of being shepherded by a media cheer squad which awarded him victory before the race had been run and whose campaign reporting reflected optimistic party insider briefing far more than reality. Perhaps he was never really in the race.

Desperate to be rid of the Abbott catastrophe, Liberals took a long punt on Turnbull’s electoral popularity. A natural despot with a rampaging ego who suffered fools badly, he had failed as a leader to gain support of his party or party room six years ago and he led the Australian Republican movement nowhere in 1999 but there was still the hope that his patrician image, connections and the myth of his self-made success would elevate him beyond politics into the unassailable ranks of celebrity and total immunity from accountability. A bit like our Pauline.

Enter Pauline Hanson, celebrity demagogue, another proven political failure, whose latest rise to power owes much to the Turnbull double dissolution fiasco and The Today Show. Hanson’s press agent, James Ashby, has let Fairfax know Pauline is currently unavailable for interview. Like Turnbull, Hanson is happy with the idea of the media as fan club.

Now the myth of Turnbull’s business success and the popular superstition that it will ensure political success or at least make him saleable, gets another trot around the ring from deputy show pony Julie Bishop who tells Turnbull fan 7:30 Report’s Leigh Sales on pro government ABC TV later in the week, “he knows how to negotiate” when the record of his dealings show only that he will do anything to get his own way.

Yet, on 2 July, PM Malcolm Bligh Turnbull’s brief dream run ends in a rude awakening. The party’s bet on the former merchant banker running an IPA agenda has not paid off. Turnbull has gambled on a double dissolution early election and lost. He has only himself to blame.

Now he must face the loss of his government’s authority in what looks like a slender majority in parliament – and the huge loss to his personal authority in a party riven by faction, divided over same sex marriage and with types like Cory Bernardi and the Delcons yearning for Abbott’s return misreading the election result as a call to turn even further to the right.

Turnbull is not the man to handle complex and delicate negotiations. He has never disguised his enormous ambition nor his king-size ego. Former business partner, Trevor Kennedy, Australian Consolidate Press managing director and former Bulletin editor said in 1984:

“Malcolm probably wouldn’t even be satisfied with being prime minister of Australia. He’d probably rather be prime minister of the world.”

Banking colleagues dubbed him “The Ayatollah” while Brendan Nelson who defeated Turnbull for Liberal Party leadership in 2007 believes Turnbull:

“has a narcissistic personality disorder. He says the most appalling things and can’t understand why people get upset.”

Come election night, he’s lost the plot. He’s late to his own wake; or rather the “victory party” staged in a hotel which like the PM’s blue-ribbon electorate is named after William Wentworth, son of a convicted highwayman, a “currency lad” who re-invented himself as a patriot.

Turnbull, like Jay Gatsby, springs from his own immaculate conception of himself. The man who would be Prime Minister must now look out over the bedraggled remnants of his depleted cheer squad, many of whom, like the PM himself, are tired and emotional and offer some solace. He is confronted: taunted by the tawdry reminders of his failure to deliver and it shows.

The private schoolboy has a public tantrum. No-one is thanked for their campaign, no commiseration is offered to the many who have lost seats. Victory has been stolen from him. Once again, it is all about Malcolm. Quickly the Delcons, the deluded conservative Abbott supporters will claim the result would have been better under the junkyard dog. Once again, they are wrong.

Turnbull is no overnight failure. Years of Liberal government misrule, party division and dysfunction, not to mention the monumental ineptitude of his predecessor, who spent recklessly on defence, fetishised the national flag and fantasised about invading Syria or Ukraine, not to mention shirt-fronting Putin, have led up to this moment.

To see Turnbull as solely the architect of his own misfortune is to miss the Liberal Party’s decline over the last decades a process which as Guy Rundle puts it “so successfully undermined the platform on which it once stood, that it has fallen through the hole.”

Today’s Liberal Party draws upon an eclectic mix of ideologies from neoliberal, classical liberal and conservative schools of thought, blending tea party jargon about small government with neoliberal and small “l” liberal ideas and even in submarine building, industry protectionism. The confused brew makes the task of leadership even more daunting for Turnbull.

Will he fall on his sword? The honourable way out would be to make a resignation speech. Now, just when once again he seems to have snatched defeat from the jaws of victory, a mortally wounded Malcolm Bligh Turnbull reaches deep within himself and orates.

We can still form majority government, he thunders. Why is he shouting? Echoes here of the schoolboy debater, a natural third speaker who chooses bluster over substance.

Then there’s the scapegoating. It is as if the public have spoilt the party by not voting for him.

Labor’s mendacity, including “an extraordinary act of dishonesty” in text messaging purporting to come from Medicare has scared voters off the privatisation of Medicare which is otherwise proceeding apace with the government’s freezing of the Medicare rebate to GPs, and cutting bulk billing payments for pathology and diagnostic imaging and cuts to the Medicare Safety Net.

Yet no cuts are proposed to the $11 billion government subsidy of private health insurance.

No privatisation? Turnbull’s technically correct. Former PMC secretary John Menadue points out, current Coalition policy won’t privatise Medicare, it will destroy it.

By Tuesday, Turnbull concedes that the scare campaign against Medicare succeeded because his government had provided fertile ground for Labor’s “outrageous lie,” but the wounded Turnbull lashing out at a Labor scapegoat, Saturday, is the one voters will recognize as more authentic.

Ira fraudulosa esse non potest. Anger cannot be dishonest.

Turnbull lies that “party officials,” whose myopia has contributed to the campaign disaster, confirm the Coalition could form a government in its own right. Claw back seats from Labor.

“We’ve been here before,” he adds, another palpable lie, rallying the faithful whose bitter disappointment in his leadership is fast turning to anger. He offers another spurious historical parallel and the implicit hope that he’d lead them through this crisis instead of deeper into it.

“I give you Bob Katter,” he will be able to say by Friday, enriching his government’s prospects of success in the same sex marriage plebiscite con by signing up an independent who will walk backwards to Burke if there’s a gay in his electorate.

Katter’s list of demands include federal funding for the Galilee Basin railway, a strong moral case according to Resources Minister Josh Frydenberg in October last year who is keen to divert funds from the Northern Australia infrastructure facility to build a stranded investment that will never pay its way servicing the proposed Adani coal mine that could only proceed if the world reversed its investment in renewable the Indian government changed its policy of discouraging coal imports.

Before he even begins his election night dummy spit, Fizza Turnbull has been abandoned by a good third of the victory party to say nothing of a parliamentary party white-hot with rage and seething with self-righteous resentment. The smart set has withdrawn to its comfortable eastern suburbs barricades. Au pairs and nannies are put to bed leaving Alan Jones to put the boot in.

Smelling blood, Channel 7’s team, fittingly, leads the nation in a bit of victim-bashing speculating that poor little Malco has wimped out. He’s staying home with his head under the doona. Shortly after this is broadcast, the PM appears, family in tow.

He has a plan, he says. He will turn this disaster of a defeat thing around. Like any blue-blooded scorpion, he lashes out at Labor’s Medicare lies. The police will be involved.

A simian John Howard, the architect of so much of the modern Liberal Party’s existential crisis, whom party and media amnesiacs alike have grotesquely elevated to party patron saint looks on approvingly, perhaps remembering his own undermining of Medicare not by open cuts but by failing to increase funding to keep up with increases in prices and population and his use of the “babies overboard” lie to win an election he deserved to lose.

Perhaps his heroic Iraqi war effort is on his mind. So hard to get good intelligence before battle.

It can’t be easy being Malcolm. Failure has dogged so many of his grand ventures now, including his failure to lead the Australian Republic Movement in 1999, his botched, white elephant of an NBN, his disastrous attempt to lead his own party in 2009 which ruptured on his despotic temperament and his failure to negotiate a PM role which left him any credibility or authority, all which his media cheer squad has been keen to overlook.

No one to blame but himself.

Turnbull’s dismal performance on election night earns the scorn of Laurie Oakes, self-appointed national moral guardian whose own virtuous behaviour includes the practical misogyny of his persecution of Julia Gillard who wrote the book on successful minority government.

Laurie Oakes was also instrumental in preparing the electorate for Tony Abbott, contributing to the myth that the Gillard years were chaotic and dysfunctional or that the junkyard toad would somehow, overnight become a prince, a leader and an effective Prime Minister.

Beyond the theatrics of a lost election lie the profound issues of the people’s voice ignored, a voice which now it is so easy to disparage or dispute or discourage competing as it must in a mediated society where elections are about what we believe to be our choices based on what we are told by radio, TV, website and all other form of mass medium.

Perhaps the greatest irony in the Coalition’s election debacle is that a servile, pro-government media created a bubble which insulated the government from the feedback it needed to run an effective campaign. Instead of the strategic feedback the Coalition needed, it received an echo of its own spin.

The government was “tracking well in the marginals,” we were all told. Insiders were quietly confident. Insiders predict a comfortable victory. No wonder Turnbull in his naiveté thought he really didn’t have to try. Perhaps this is the key to his anger election night, he and his party were undone by their own spin; betrayed by their own narcissism.

Surely, also, on some level he must know he is utterly undone and once again, parliamentary party playmate of the month that he may once have been and however much seduced by the Liberal party’s born to rule complacency, he is ultimately the architect of his downfall.

Without the victory that would have conferred authority and without the judgement and personal skills required to negotiate a minority government or one with a slender majority, his best course of action is to resign.

David Tyler blogs at http://urbanwronski.com. He is a regular writer for The Tasmanian Times and has had work published on Independent Australia.

 

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77 comments

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  1. Freethinker

    Well David, unfortunately the people have spoken and they ask for more the same.
    I was expecting different reaction by the electorate but seems to me that they are happy with that.

  2. Dan Rowden

    Without the victory that would have conferred authority and without the judgement and personal skills required to negotiate a minority government or one with a slender majority, his best course of action is to resign.

    And give us back Abbott? Um, I don’t think so.

  3. Duffa

    Malcolm Bligh Turnbull, i.e. Bligh like Mutiny on Bounty Bligh interesting.
    Doesn’t Turnbull represent an accurate image of the whole party an incoherent union of failed individualists with no real objective. One wooden angel is as good as another when the ship is becalmed.

  4. Matters Not

    give us back Abbott? Um, I don’t think so

    I for one would welcome him back with open arms. And the sooner the better. ? ? ?

    I’m sure he hasn’t learned a thing. Would be business as normal.

    Bring back Peta as well. Such a kind, intelligent, competent pair. ? ?

  5. Freethinker

    And give us back Abbott? Um, I don’t think so.
    IMO will be Bishop or Morrison which are as bad as Malcolm and Abbott.
    People have to realize that all of them worked united in a team with the same convictions and policies.
    They changed the captain but the crew is the same with the same destination.

  6. AngryAnt

    Your article makes some insightful analysis about what brought Malcolm to the brink of defeat but to suggest that he resigns is rather silly and might I say lacking in insight. It is likely that the Coalition will form a slender majority Government. Should Mr Turnbull resign this would ensure maximum instability that would benefit no-one. It may even herald the return of Tony, some other RWNJ or the electorate to the polls. No he should continue into the next parliament as a greatly weakened PM facing a monumental task of herding the cats in his own party and on the cross benches. Is he up to it? Probably not but time will tell. The challenge for the Opposition bench is to keep the political battle where it needs to be; “trickle down” versus alleviation of inequality. In this way a confused and angry electorate may eventually come to understand what they haven’t yet. This is the battle that must be won.

  7. helvityni

    I finally understood what Mal meant when he shouted: there’s never been a more exciting time to be Australian; he was referring to HIMSELF, like the true narcissist he is, he was excited that HIS dream to be an Australian PM had come true…

  8. Kronomex

    Turnbull won’t have to resign he’ll be “et tu, Brute’d” within months.

  9. Anon E Mouse

    Interesting you mention Laurie Oakes, and his link to ‘chaotic’ Gillard years. Laurie was always adamant that Rudd was not the leaker – but I suppose we will never know…

    My fear is if Turnbull gets turfed out, we will end up with that git Morrison.

  10. helvityni

    Bishop: NO, Morrison: NO, Dutton: NO,NO,NO, Abbott: NO,NO,NO,NO….

    Who?

    I could list at least four possible Labor MPs; one side heavy with talent, the other, none.

  11. cornlegend

    Malcolm won’t resign as he is making all the right noises to his internal opponents.
    Dutton, the leader of the “monkey pod’ has been brought into the leadership tent, and the offers of Ministries and other higher paid positions to some stragglers will bring them onside.
    Actually, the more I do the numbers the more depressed I be come
    The ALP will end up on 68-69
    The LNP 76-77
    Others 5
    Now, of the others, 3 Xenophon, McGowan and Katter have already pledged to the dark side, not that the LNP could need them, if they get 77
    1 Speaker and LNP still have a majority 75 or 76 without the Indies,
    Labor could count on Bandt and at times Wilkie so the best possible voter block would only be 70-71.
    I am not all that sure the Senate will be a good blocking joint possibly 3 Greens gone replaced by One Nations up to 4, , Hynch and an assorted bunch of religious nutters replace Lazarus and Muir
    AND
    The MSM hammering home Malcolms message and dragging out ANY Labor baggage and the Greens supporters on progressive sites shitpotting Labor as much if not more than LNP and I think they can go full Term
    Then at the 2019 Election the Senate reverts to 14% quotas again and the ones up for re election will be the Indies, small parties
    so another term with strong MSM support for Malcolm isn’t out of the picture

  12. kerri

    Whilst I agree titally that Turnbull has to go, I do believe the calls for his resignation bear more strength coming from his own party as has begun with Bernardi and is bound to continue with idiots like Abetz and Christensen.
    Once someone gets in Abbott’s ear the fun will really start.
    In Government in his own right will not magically endow Malcolm with an ability to negotiate.
    He is doomed to fail.
    The opposition would do well to maintain a humble and dignified patience.

  13. Michael Taylor

    Cornie, Cathy McGowan hasn’t crossed to the dark side, as the media made it out to be. She only said she won’t block supply, in order to avoid a constitutional crisis like we had in 1975.

    She stands for a lot that the government doesn’t stand for, such as wanting same-sex marriage legalised and wanting better action on climate change.

    Mirabella ran a very nasty campaign against her, highlighting the number of times McGowan had voted with the ALP and the Greens. She also voted against removing the ‘carbon tax’.

    She hasn’t joined the dark side at all.

  14. Freethinker

    I do not not why people make a big fuss regarding the independents to not block supply when also that is the policy of the ALP.

  15. Carol Taylor

    Loved the way that the MSM spun it with both McGowan and Katter – large headlines about both ‘backing the LNP’ to try to give the impression that they were 100% backers of the coalition. With Katter I believed it knowing his past form, however even with Katter, he made it very clear that he won’t tolerate ‘union bashing’. Therefore it’s bye bye to the Liberal’s dream of a Royal Commission.

  16. Carol Taylor

    Kerri, I agree absolutely. The only way that Turnbull has a hope of lasting the distance is to assert his authority very early on, something that he didn’t seem to have the gumption for when he first knifed Tony, instead allowing the far right wing nut jobs dictate the agenda.

  17. cornlegend

    Michael,
    I miss Sophie :-{
    On McGowan
    I just go on her history and on that she has form
    Overall, Cathy has voted with the Government more than 90 per cent of the time.

    These are the official records from Hansard.

    The 44th Parliament commenced on 12 November 2013, since that date and including 5 May 2016, 547 Government Bills have been presented in the House of Representatives.

    Since 12 November 2013, 475 Bills have been passed in the House of Representatives
    Of these I voted with the Government on 443 occasions and with the Opposition on 32 occasions
    On 9 occasions I voted against the Government and the Opposition
    Figures correct as at 5 May 2016.)
    On top of that she voted with the LNP on the No Confidence vote on Speaker Bishop.

    “Mirabella ran a very nasty campaign against her, highlighting the number of times McGowan had voted with the ALP’

    ALL 32 times

    Michael, now you are a smart bloke, do you reckon 90+% of the LNP Governments Bills and Legislation were worth supporting?

  18. Lj

    Unfortunately, Bill Shorten has just conceded defeat via live stream
    I certainly gave liberals my lowest of positions . Turnball should resign effective immediately after taking office,
    Bernadi, Christenson, Shelton, and others of their ilk should resign as well.
    This country is embarrassed enough as it is by them being in office.
    Let the condemnation of those stupid people who voted liberals start, dumbass people get mislead too easily and suffer foolery
    unto their ending in the past, lest we forget, but we never will.

  19. cornlegend

    Freethinker
    I’m not to perturbed about the supply issue , more the Bills and Legislation.
    I do find it interesting that last time this happened, the vote was complete and the threesome negotiated for 17 days.
    This time, the votes not completed, the LNP are unliikely to need them, but the 3 decided in a millisecond where their support was going on Supply

  20. cornlegend

    Lj
    don’t be too shocked if the ones you named as needing to resign all get bumped up the food chain within the LNP family

  21. townsvilleblog

    The Labor Party needs to take this success to democratize the party, and get angry about the disservice being done to the Australian people by this LNP govt. The Shadow Ministers need to be on their toes and oppose and highlight every wrong move the LNP make from now until the next election, whenever that happens to be.

  22. cornlegend

    If there is a god out there, may he/she help the sick, the aged and the vulnerable
    cause the bottom feeder LNP won’t

    Oh well, accept we lost :-} regroup, refocus and start the new campaign today to rid us of this scurvy mob

  23. Michael Taylor

    No, I don’t Cornie. But Mirabella would have voted with the government 100% of the time.

  24. Michael Taylor

    Cornie, in regards to your last comment, you can bet your bottom dollar that that’s what this site will be doing. 🙂

  25. Möbius Ecko

    Too right Carol, not only have the independents said they won’t block supply and will vote for confidence in the government, every one of them so far has stated they reserve the right to change sides or their vote at any time, and that includes Wilkie who the media stated has fully sided with Turnbull when he hasn’t.

    What sort of guaranteed support is that? At least Gillard’s negotiated support mostly stayed with her, though Wilkie rightly put up a protest on her gambling legislation backflip.

  26. Freethinker

    Michael, do you have any statistics in how many people are visiting this site?
    I love to know many people read the articles and comments here apart of us the regulars

  27. Michael Taylor

    Yes we do, Freethinker. Over the last couple of months it was around 400,000 a month but it’s slowed down a bit the last few days.

  28. Freethinker

    Thanks Michael, I will keep “spreading the word” in the sites that I am visiting.
    The Guardian is a good site to let the readers know about AIMN
    We have to have a regular target of 5000000

  29. Freethinker

    Ops 5 million is a bit optimistic, delete one 0 for the time being

  30. Anon E Mouse

    cornlegend, I saw that Shorten backs electronic voting. That might solve the issue of running out of ballot papers that some booths did, and it would make counting quicker, negate a lot of need for absentee voting etc, but am not so sure about remote areas that dipped out on being able to vote due to the AEC fumblings.

    I hope Shorten really pushes this because it will highlight the fact that for electronic voting we would need a reasonable internet service, and it would remind everyone that Turnbull and the Libs could not deliver NBN as they promised.

  31. Freethinker

    IMO if the ALP do their home work on getting the postal votes like the Liberal party does in every election the ALP will be in power now.

  32. Carol Taylor

    Cathy McGowan has placed on her website a subject: How I Vote:

    http://www.cathymcgowan.com.au/parliament

    There are a number of things I disagree with but many I agree with. For example, voted to abolish the MMRT but voted against Pyne’s higher education ‘reforms’. On matters of division where there were fewer than 4 she sided with Bandt and Wilkie. I do not think that the government is going to get much joy from Ms McGowan or else why would the LNP have sent in not just one but two candidates against her. Apart from Mirabella, we also had running for the Nats a fundamentalist Christian by the name of Marty Corboy. McGowan was certainly the best out of the far right wing (and loonie) bunch presented to the electorate.

  33. Carol Taylor

    Freethinker, a problem with postals is that a good portion relate to places such as nursing homes, so we’re looking at the much older demographic predominantly. Hence the reason that postals always favor the conservatives.

  34. cornlegend

    Freethinker

    I agree about the need to get onto the postal vote issue
    On Tuesday the vote was 50/50. Since then 710k votes counted: 55% LNP, 45% ALP.
    Tuesday 6 p.m. Votes counted since Wednesday
    5,038,899 50% LNP 388,653 55%
    5,074,929 50% ALP 320,965 45%

  35. Matters Not

    Re Electronic Voting – Where is the Audit Trail? What about Anonymity? What about Security? Then there’s Software errors. Time for a Recount?

    Possibly a hackers dream come true. There’s still some distance to go before the ‘pencil and paper’ can be discarded with any high degree of confidence.

  36. Max

    What happens if Labor turns around and wins the seats in doubt ?

  37. @RosemaryJ36

    There are few articles which I read here that I do not post on Facebook and Twitter.

  38. Freethinker

    Matters Not, I agree with your comment, IMO there it is not enough security do go digital yet.

  39. Anon E Mouse

    Matters not, the reasons you give are very valid and I don’t believe we are technologically ready for electronic voting. However, maybe there is some reason to start small, such as – it would be reasonable to have printers so that absentee voters can lodge their votes electronically and then print out the completed vote. Marking off the electoral roll… with pics taken if a person’s name is already marked as voted…
    Lots of ideas.
    In remote communities, this might be very useful way of voting, especially as is the case of many small communitites, the possibility of voting twice is restricted by distance. The senate paper could be set out electronically, maybe even have voice details, so that when the cursor is rolled over a name it and its party are read out, for language and or hearing impaired people. Head phones could be used for privacy.

    But the dodgy Turnbull fraudband NBN will be very relevant.

  40. silkworm

    One has to wonder why Labor chose to say that the Libs were intending to “privatize” Medicare rather than “destroy” it, which would have been impossible for the Libs to refute. This could be considered a tactical blunder which cost Labor the election.

  41. Phil

    To me the most interesting aspect of this election and its aftermath is the degree to which a much larger, wider global narrative is at play yet almost all commentary here is focussed on domestic issues with a substantial part of that narrowed down to party political gamesmanship. If this insular and largely pointless debate continues much longer we risk learning nothing of the underlying truths that are playing out across western capitalist systems.

    John Michael Greer, blogger at The Archdruid Report has posted an illuminating commentary that deserves serious consideration because Australia, despite its physical isolation, is intimately involved in the current neoliberal experiment that is unravelling so spectacularly for example in Europe, UK, and the USA.

    http://thearchdruidreport.blogspot.com.au/2016/06/outside-hall-of-mirrors.html

  42. Dave

    A beautiful study of arseholes

  43. Florence nee Fedup

    Yes, the people have spoken. A greater number aren’t asking for more of the same. Turnbull, as much as he likes can’t afford to ignore them.

  44. Florence nee Fedup

    This government will fail, as they seem to have convinced themselves. all about Labor lying about Medicare. Turnbull can save his skin and the government if he has the guts to take control and work with Shorten. The neolibs in his ranks won’t allow that.

  45. Dan Rowden

    I guess the question is what message, specifically, ought Turnbull take from the Coalition’s meaningful loss of ground in the HoR? I frankly don’t know what it is, especially in the face of the Senate result.

  46. Neil of Sydney

    I guess the question is what message, specifically, ought Turnbull take from the Coalition’s meaningful loss of ground in the HoR?

    For the first time in my life i did not vote Liberal No 1. I put my local Liberal candidate No 3 with 2 conservative candidates 1&2. I briefly thought about putting Labor no 3 but could not do it. Hopefully the Liberal will get my preference vote.

    Turnbull is like the dog who chased the car. Having caught the car he does not know what to do next. however he is better than Shorten

  47. alexandria300

    Under all of Australia’s laws, which extends to act of Parliament as well Turnbull can not hold office. The Governor General has to also dismantle Parliament. There are legal facts from Australia’s best legal mind in this article and report. read http://50-shades-of-abuse.blogspot.com.au/2015/12/canberra-government-thieves-real-burden.html

    Also read our exclusive world article that has gone to all the worlds media, there are videos also: IRAQ WAR — Governments went to war on a lie http://50-shades-of-abuse.blogspot.com.au/2016/07/iraq-war-governments-went-to-war-on-lie.html

    Humanitarians, Human Rights activist, Whistleblowers to stop abuse, violence, sexual abuse, child abuse, domestic abuse, child pornography and corruption. Last year in Australia our people were nominated for a humanitarian award.

  48. cornlegend

    “Malcolm Turnbull must resign”
    Actually, I had a visitor over at my joint this arvo who describes himself as a “moderate Liberal” [yep, I do associate with some}
    He is a paid up member and faithfully attends his branch meetings and from what I gleaned from him all the Liberals in my area, which by the way, aren’t many cause even their candidate bailed on them just weeks out, are happy that Malcolm won.
    They were pretty much resigned to the fact that Abbott would have lost it for them, and any win no matter how slim is better than defeat and for that they are grateful to Fizza .
    I know the feeling, a victory by one would have been sweet enough

  49. Jason

    A better option to start with rather than full electronic voting would be to have scanners to quickly scan the votes. They can then be manually counted after especially if close but it would at least do a lot of the legwork.

    Also why is it pencil? That really concerns me as it can be rubbed out!! Pen too mandatory. Add in postal votes must go straight to AEC not the member first.

  50. Florence nee Fedup

    Silkworm, word privatise attracts attention. Semantic anyway.

  51. cornlegend

    alexandria300
    good luck with that 😀

  52. cornlegend

    Neil of Sydney
    congratulations on your win,
    god help us all now.
    By 2019 you will be handing out Bills HTVS. I note the transformation slowly taking place.
    I reckon 2017 will be your “coming out” year eh comrade?

  53. Florence nee Fedup

    .

    ,

    I wanted to let you know that while counting is still ongoing, it’s now clear that Malcolm Turnbull and the Coalition will be able to form a government.

    Whether this is a minority government or a majority government of one or two seats remains to be seen. This afternoon, I phoned Mr Turnbull to congratulate him and to wish him and his family well.

    Although Labor did not win enough seats at this election, I am very proud of the bold campaign we ran, the seats we won and how close we came.

    Most importantly, I want to thank you for all your hard work and support – we couldn’t have done it without you.

    During the campaign, you played your part in:

    Knocking on over 500,000 doors
    Making more than one million phone calls
    Sharing Labor’s message online which saw over 100 million impressions on Facebook
    And raising a record $1.1 million through small donations
    Labor is back. We are united, we have found our voice. We have more MPs and Senators and they are more determined than ever.

    The 2016 campaign was defined by our Labor values – protecting Medicare, standing up for Australian jobs, championing better schools.

    These are things the Labor Party will never stop fighting for.

    Thank you again,

    Bill’s signature

    Bill

    It appears that unions, Getup and labor volunteers made tens thousand phone calls, lasting few minutes up to 30 minutes last couple days of campaign. I know there were also many texts. person to person not robot. Also internet flood with ads, targeted to different age groups etc.

    No Mr Turnbull,, not just Medicare. Lots little people getting together to take a stand. Not about big moneyeither.

  54. Florence nee Fedup

    Love the idea of printer for printing out absentee voting forms. makes so much sense. Turnbull still rabbiting on about that grotesque text and added robocalls. Only ones I received came from his side of the fence.

    One can have electronic voting with paper copy. Or more truer, paper vote with electronic copy. Best both worlds.

  55. Malcolm Lambe (@IMCopywriter)

    “Surely, also, on some level he must know he is utterly undone and once again,” What do you mean by the (stupid) phrase “on some level”?

  56. king1394

    Regarding postal votes, rather than demanding that Labor follow the wasteful pattern of the Liberals and send out millions of unwanted applications, what is needed is to ban the practice of any political party being permitted to send out postal vote applications.

  57. Freethinker

    king1394, I was referring to party volunteers visiting those people that cannot go the the sites to vote. A person to person it is more efficient than just send the vote on the mail.

  58. totaram

    Just a comment here about the “pencils” used in the voting booths: I looked at the one in my booth carefully and found that it was not a normal pencil as far as I could see. It was a type you rarely see nowadays, but which is sort of indelible. You can lick it to give a purple colour, if you are keen. Someone involved with the process could correct me if I am wrong.

    As far as some kind of computerisation of the voting process is concerned, I’m sure it is possible. With all the strong encryption available today, which even the FBI cannot easily crack, it should be possible to make the process secure. One can always have printed backups for a double-check.

  59. Neil of Sydney

    By 2019 you will be handing out Bills HTVS.

    I doubt i could ever vote Labor. I am sure the people smugglers would start warming up the diesel engines if Labor won. Could not stand to see our borders trashed again. I am sure they will test Turnbull if he weakens Abbotts policies.

  60. Möbius Ecko

    NoS the borders were trashed by Howard illegally invading Iraq on lies and deceit. The current terrorist and mass displacement of peoples can be traced back to that.

    You can’t vote Labor but lovingly support a war criminal.

  61. Michael Taylor

    “You can’t vote Labor but lovingly support a war criminal”.

    Bang. Bullseye.

  62. Sam

    I live in the same street as Neil he’s really a handsome man, I just can’t stand politics

  63. Jason

    ME nailed it but seriously Neil. The mass exodus of refugees of war now aren’t even considered in context to the small number under Howard.

    Add in the millions of climate change refugees in coming decades and it’s going to be an absolute catastrophe of unimaginable proportions.

    Trying to get cheap shots in for 3 year cycles doesn’t change the historical reality or the longer term really of policy choices by the liberals.

    I know you want everything to be simple black/white concepts but the world isn’t that simple.

    Black/white thinking is even a recognised psychological problem that therapy can help with: https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Splitting_(psychology) Medicare will even cover therapy for free within reason. That is by no means a personal attack. I’ve needed counselling many times in my life and it’s made me a much better person but it was incredibly hard to reach out for it initially. I hope that barrier is being broken down.

  64. Sam

    Jason thanks I’ll drop some information into to Neil’s letterbox during the week.

  65. Matters Not

    I live in the same street as Neil he’s really a handsome man

    Hello, hello, Neil has a ‘secret’ admirer.

    Loved for his body but not for his …

    Just give up politics Neil and live happily ever after.

    Sam will you consent to love, …

    Abbott will not approve. ? ? ?

  66. Angry Old Man

    I’ve read all of the comments to this post, and the redoubtable Kaye Lee hasn’t said a word. What’s the deal with Harquebus?

  67. Choppa

    He won the election. Why would he resign? He has won the mandate of the Australian people. Billy boy however – after shafting 2 PMs, has failed. 2/3s of Australia has rejected Labor. He will not last into 2018 – mark my words.

    Labor is a dead brand. THey were on the verge of being cooked once they reluctantly had to show how they planned on funding their nonsense promises – no surprise it was just going to be a massive spiral into even more debt. In desperation they pulled out the ol’ scare tactics with the mediscare BS. Similar to work choices.

    When you have no plan – you can always bank on scaring the gullible australians. Fortunately only 1/3 of Australia is stupid enough to fall for it.

    Was fantastic watching a defeated and tired shorten concede – he couldnt even remember what his policies were, because he had spent every last bit of energy on a deceitful campaign and lost. He failed where Gillard and Rudd had succeeded. He is a walking duck – looking forward to the Labor implosion after this one.

  68. Neil of Sydney

    You can’t vote Labor but lovingly support a war criminal.

    I am not a lawyer so i have no idea if it was an illegal war. However i am sure the Americans and British would have made sure. Interesting that the recent report did not rule about that topic

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Iraq_Inquiry#Legal_basis_for_war_was_far_from_satisfactory

    Legal basis for war was far from satisfactory

    The inquiry was not about the legality of military action and did not rule one way or the other as it is not an internationally recognised court. However, the report did criticize the process by which the government investigated the legal basis for the war, finding it “far from satisfactory”.[3

  69. very concerned

    Why do Australians use pencils for voting?

  70. Freethinker

    Neil of SydneyJuly 11, 2016 at 9:22 am
    You can’t vote Labor but lovingly support a war criminal.

    Neil, are you aware that more than on Coalition minister was referred to the International Crime Court?
    Are you aware that Australia do not honor the UN agreements and conventions signed?

  71. Dan Rowden

    Why do Australians use pencils for voting?

    As the AEC explains:

    The provision of pencils in polling booths is a requirement of section 206 of the Electoral Act. There is, however nothing to prevent an elector from marking his or her ballot paper with a pen if they so wish. The AEC has found from experience that pencils are the most reliable implements for marking ballot papers. Pencils are practical because they don’t run out and the polling staff check and sharpen pencils as necessary throughout election day. Pencils can be stored between elections and they work better in tropical areas. The security of your vote is guaranteed as the storage and counting of ballots is tightly scrutinised.

    Plus there is zero evidence of vote tampering in Australia.

  72. Jaquix

    Electronic voting sounds good, but my techy son and all his mates say NO, too dangerous, and open to rorting. Nothing is unhackable. (remember George W Bush’s Florida squeak-in?? Result very dodgy) What DOES need to be done, and could be done quite easily, is to tighten up existing practices/law for AEC. Allowing voters 13 days AFTER the election to post their votes in, is plain ridiculous. They should be in on election day. After all, they know they are going away! Also there could be extra shifts put on to do the counting, no day off from counting. There may be a role for for electronic processes to achieve efficiencies, but a wholesale move to “electronic voting” is not the answer. Thanks for the article David Tyler.

  73. DisablednDesperate

    Having worked for the AEC the reason they use pencils is that they are cheap. There really is no sinister reason. Especially at this election it would be hard to change them for 2 reasons.

    The first is you work so hard and fast and someone with you at all times and unless you brought your own there are no erasers.

    Second, especially this year the level of scrutiny from each party was immense. They literally watch every move you make.

    There is a recent article maybe on The Canberra Times but not sure as to why fully electronic isn’t s good idea. The people read the code of the NSW one and found faults.

    I am so grateful to Michael and all the writers here. They keep me sane.

  74. Jaquix

    Not only are pencils cheap, I believe they are mentioned in the constitution. Ball points not invented then!

  75. Jaquix

    My local library, and no doubt many all over the country, provides a reading area and major newspapers. All the usual suspects, 90% Murdoch, 10% Fairfax. How can we get print versions of TheAIM and other independents, as a form of antidote? I wondered if GetUp would be interested? Any other ideas?

  76. Jason

    Thanks Sam. Hopefully if he does use this Medicare entitlement he can also thank Gillard for bringing it under Medicare as psychological services werent covered previously.

    Only much more expensive psychiatrists that can prescribe medications had rebates previously.

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