The current Australian government is incrementally increasing insular policies and legislation that will curb any criticism, protest, access to information, or rationally and evidence-based strategies.
In the current climate emergency it can demonstrate no significant and clearly delineated plan to deal with such future catastrophes or to mitigate the effects of climate change, which is an obvious contributor to what has become an increasing trend towards weather extremes. Indeed, one of its ministers even write-off this idea as just a tactic of the Greens to muddy the waters and push their own agenda.
There has been considerable discussion about this government’s win over the ALP. Lots of blame has been aimed at Bill Shorten and his ambitious policies. At the same time, praise has been heaped on Morrison for the LNP win.
In fact, with the exception of the Greens, the ALP was the only political party to offer a comprehensive policy agenda. The LNP had none at all, unless you can so call its normal practice of favouring the wealthy and large corporations at the expense of the bulk of the community, particularly those who are disadvantaged.
The ALP policy platform was wide-ranging, rational, equitable and progressive. Had it been put into place then Australia would have a chance of regaining its status as a nation of caring and welcoming; of an equitable rule of law; of adherence to the principle of open discussion and civil liberties; of collaboration and partnership with other nations for the improvement of human relations and well-being – not, if at all, simply for profit.
Morrison has extended the demeaning of the financially and skills disadvantaged with his comment about “give it a go and get a go”. None of the denials of this put down of the disadvantaged can be sustained under logical examination. Amanda Vanstone’s squirming and cowardly attempt to defend Morrison’s view as applying to something else was one of the most cowardly and obvious instance of right wing false bifurcation used as means to dig themselves out of a hole.
That this government will ignore the plight of millions of Australians living at or below the poverty line whilst investing billions in military hardware that is generally obsolescent before it can even enter service, and very often needs massively costly upgrades before it can achieve that for which it was purchased, is a sad indictment on right-wing ideology.
That this government places more stock on the profits of an unscrupulous Indian company, known for wrong-doing, and provides backing for it to mine for coal, regardless of the known and undeniable impact on native species and the environment, is yet another example of the ‘profit before people’ tenet that lies at the core of this government’s ideology.
All of these factors are reasons why this government has no mandate and does not deserve to exercise the control that it does. It and its predecessor governments over the last half dozen years have tripled Australia’s debt, yet have the gall to proclaim a surplus. Smoke and mirrors is its tactic.
Sadly, the growth of populism and the simplistic acceptance of selfish and discriminatory policies appeals to far too many Australians – and so this government was elected. Helped, of course, by smear campaigns against ALP candidates, lies about ALP intentions, and false advertising to capture the Chinese vote and that of others.
The worst aspect of this government and the majority of its members is their continual lying. The direct lies are enough to deserve censure of these dishonourable members but when the sleight of hand deceit, the attacks on the media, the abuse of the FOI Act and redaction of documents to the point of worthlessness, the manipulation of statistics and other figures such that they obscure or even reverse actual facts, and their failure to ever answer a straight-forward question with a straight-forward and honest answer – it is clear that the members of this government are neither honourable, rational, service-orientated, caring of those without, or possessed of any creative solutions and vision for the future.
It was a sad day when neo-liberalism arrived on our shores and it is even sadder today that so many people are fooled by it and have voted against their own interests by voting in this despicable, myopic, dishonest, self-serving and incompetent government.
This article was originally published as a comment in ‘Stick to the photos, boys – it’s yer best thing.’
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