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Scott Morrison – authentic or a populist opportunist?

The image spin doctors have decided to run with the line that Scott Morrison is an authentic daggy dad from the suburbs.

Authentic is not an adjective I would ascribe to this populist opportunist.

And nothing shows that better than his abandonment of any action on emissions reduction and climate change.

“We’ll get there in a canter” is the phrase du jour despite all evidence pointing to the contrary.

The dinosaurs in the Coalition tell us we exceeded our first Kyoto commitment like that was some badge of honour. What they don’t mention is that first commitment was to actually, unlike the rest of the industrialised world, increase our emissions.

Compared to the base year of 1990, Europe promised to reduce its emissions by 8% in the five-year “commitment period”, 2008-12. The United States agreed to cut emissions by 7%, and Japan and Canada by 6%. Australia dug its heels in and got its way; its Kyoto target would be 8% above 1990 levels.

We then insisted, in what became known as “the Australia clause”, that we be allowed to claim carbon emissions reductions from a supposed reduction in land clearing, using 1990 as a base because it was an extraordinarily high year for land clearing, mainly in Queensland.

With the inclusion of the Australia clause, the nation’s emissions from burning fossil fuels could rise by 25-30% while overall emissions would still come in at under 8% by claiming reductions in land clearing.

This is precisely what happened. From 1990 to 2012 Australia’s emissions from all sources except land-use change and forestry grew by 28%.

Moving on to our second Kyoto target – a 5% reduction on 2000 emissions level by 2020 – we are playing the same sort of games.

According to the National Greenhouse Gas Inventory, Australia’s annual emissions for the year to December 2017 were 2.4 per cent below emissions in 2000 with emissions increasing 1.5 per cent from the previous year, continuing a three-year trend of increases ever since the repeal of carbon pricing.

Then we move to our 2030 target – 26 to 28% below 2005 levels. Why change base years? Because 2005 was, once again, a particularly high year for emissions. To highlight the difference it makes, where last year’s emissions were 2.4 per cent below emissions in 2000, they were 11.7 per cent below emissions in 2005. Just by changing the base year, we make it sound like we are doing more than we are.

And will we “get there in a canter”, as our PM without a policy tells us?

According to the Department’s emissions projections 2017, “Total emissions in 2030 are projected to be 5 per cent below 2005 levels.”

“Emissions in 2030 are projected to grow by 3.5 per cent above 2020 levels. Most of the projected growth in emissions is in the transport sector, led by increased heavy vehicles activity for freight, and the agriculture sector, driven by increased stocking numbers.”

So spare me your slogans Scott. (Have you noticed he has started counting them off on his fingers just as Abbott used to do?)

Psychology Today gives the following description of inauthentic people:

Are self-deceptive and unrealistic in their perceptions of reality.

Look to others for approval and to feel valued.

Are judgemental of other people.

Do not think things through clearly.

Have a hostile sense of humor.

Are unable to express their emotions freely and clearly.

Are not open to learning from their mistakes.

Do not understand their motivations.

If behind what a person says and does is a defensive and self-deceptive approach to life, then no matter how passionate and committed they are to a cause, ultimately they are not being true to themselves.

Authenticity is ultimately about those qualities that show healthy non-defensive functioning and psychological maturity. Those are the qualities we need to look for.

I would suggest our search for an authentic leader is far from over.


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  1. Kerri

    And another thing, just like Abbott the man is hopeless at public speaking.
    He reads his lines and repeats the for every question.
    He doesn’t answer question but instead gives the answer to the question he hoped you’d asked.

  2. phil

    Morrison is inauthenticity writ large. He comes across as a con man, which he is. Unless of course you traditionally vote conservative or liberal out of personal habit, then he might just con you into his trick.

    First cut out the rot, then work on what is left……the rot is the Liberal Party what is left is????

  3. Matters Not


    doesn’t answer question

    Perhaps he knows (like every experienced politician) that the average punter doesn’t remember the question for more than a nanosecond while the answer tends to stick.

    It’s called politics 101. Media advisors tend to say – Don’t give a f@ck about the question(s) – here’s three points (never any more – less is better) to make in your answer(s). Repeat ad infinitum.

    It works!

  4. Janet Simpson

    Do we know what Dave Sharma thinks of climate change action?

  5. Kronomex

    Morriscum is an authentic populist opportunist. I maybe wrong but I get the feeling that he’s being set up for removal before the election. How many more dire polls with him “in charge” will the LNP put up with before the daggers are used again?

  6. New England Cocky

    A skeptical political observer might suggest that this is a CIA plot to ensure that Australians remain a Deputy Dawg state on the apron strings of the USA (United States of Apartheid) while multinational corporations export of natural resources overseas for the benefit of foreign multinational corporations. Remember the 1975 Whitlam Dismissal and the CIA General Black (or Green depending on source)???

    A popular opportunist or Sunday mourning Christian with a penchant for consumerism and material things???

    Look at the evidence at hand, Manus & Nauru, not very Christian when compared to the Good Samaritan. Then giving away the wealth of the country could reasonable be considered treachery if Australian votes counted for anything.

  7. paul walter

    All the authenticity of a three dollar note.

  8. Vikingduk

    An authentically rotten to the core individual, a black hearted bastard, a shit stain on humanity. One of many in this putrid society that we accept. If we hadn’t realised already, the banking royal commission is showing us the decay of all that is considered necessary in a community. Greed is good, more and ever more dollars and f*ck the individual. We do a reprise of the rise and fall of the Roman Empire as we descend into moral bankruptcy, lies, hypocrisy and acceptance.

    Climate change will make a mockery of our petty concerns. These politicians are traitors without a doubt, hand in hand with the corporations, the business leaders, the sprukers of these rotten greed is good messages. They betray us, our children, our grand children, this beautiful planet and all its life forms, the planet we are meant to be caretakers of not the destroyers.

    F*ck them all, I’m off to find solace in the surf.

  9. MobiusEcko

    Yet Australia’s emissions continue to soar and have for the third consecutive year, something Frydenburg admitted to earlier this year.

    Yet we have a bullshit “factsheet” from,

    If you look behind the bullshit and at the quarterly updates of Australia’s National Greenhouse Gas Inventory”updates of Australia’s National Greenhouse Gas Inventory from the same department you see that since the Abbott government we have increased emissions each year.

  10. Kaye Lee

    Our government is being run by the Minerals Council and the Murdoch press……

    “The chief of staff of new prime minister Scott Morisson is John Kunkel, the former deputy CEO of the Minerals Council of Australia, the same group that thoughtfully provided a lacquered lump of coal for the then Treasurer to wave around parliament in February last year in the middle of a drought.

    Kunkel served as deputy CEO of the Minerals Council for 6 years and four months before spending two years as head of government affairs (a political lobbying position) for the country’s biggest coal producers, Rio Tinto.

    Kunkel’s previous work includes with former consultancy Concept Economics, headed by two of the most ferocious opponents of climate action and renewable energy schemes, Henry Ergas and Brian Fisher, who was on Tony Abbott’s panel reviewing the renewable energy target.

    Fisher, who now runs BAEconomics, last year presented a report to the Minerals Council about the level of subsidies to renewable energy in Australia.

    Although vastly inflating the actual number and level of subsidies, that assessment has now become a standard “alternative fact” constantly referred to by the Murdoch media, the Coalition, and even at times by the ABC.

    By a curious coincidence, that report for the Minerals Council was posted on the BAEconomics website (February 8) on the very same day that Morrison waved around and then coddled the lump of coal delivered to him by the Minerals Council.

    One of Malcolm Turnbull’s key advisors as prime minister was Sid Marris, who was a former policy officer at the Minerals Council. Marris worked for nearly 9 years at the Minerals Council, and had previously been The Australian newspaper’s Canberra bureau chief.

    The man who replaced him as head of environment and climate policy at the Minerals Council is Patrick Gibbons, who was the former advisor to then environment minister Greg Hunt.

    Turnbull’s most recent chief of staff was Clive Mathieson, a former editor of The Australian.”

    Former coal industry boss is Scott Morrison’s chief of staff

  11. Terence Mills

    Kaye, They do seem to have one policy.

    Last week in parliament Morrison foreshadowed legislation to further protect religious freedoms. When asked by the SMH why this was necessary, he said :

    “Just because things haven’t been a problem in the past doesn’t mean they won’t be a problem in the future,” the Prime Minister told Fairfax Media in an exclusive interview.

    In Question Time, the PM and the Attorney General referenced the Ruddock Report on Religious Freedoms but when called on to release the report [the government have had it since May] they declined to do so even though, it is convention to table any documents or reports mentioned during parliamentary debates.

    On the Drum last night in an open panel discussion the excellent Ellen Fanning noted that in three random newspaper ads for school teachers, each from a religious school [largely funded by taxpayers] the one common criterion was that any applicant must adhere to and support the school’s religious belief system which is, of course, not discrimination as there are already special exemptions for religions under existing legislation. The panel were unable to identify a need for further protections.

    So why do we need new legislation to protect religious freedoms and why is the Ruddock Report being
    withheld : surely this is a matter for the community to be discussing openly if the government are anticipating, as it appears, new legislation ?

  12. Kaye Lee


    I once applied for a maths teaching position at a Catholic school that had no-one who could teach computer studies, a newly emerging subject that I had been teaching for a number of years. They were impressed with my experience and the interview went well…until they asked me how I would incorporate Catholic philosophy in my maths teaching. My response that I had always insisted on a respectful learning environment for all didn’t cut it.

  13. Jagger

    Janet, Dave Sharma does believe in climate change, but if and when he gets elected his opinion might change, as did his predecessor.

  14. John Lord

    His religion would have prevented him from challenging for PM (Romans 13) Once the position was open he could stand. His appointment would be seen by the church and himself as part of God’s plan.

  15. Kaye Lee


    Apparently “darkness” will spread across Australia and Christians will be persecuted if Scott Morrison does not win the next election.

    Morrison’s rise to power was a “miracle of God” that answered three days of prayer and fasting. God intervened to ensure he beat Dutton – Morrison’s elevation to power was divinely inspired.

    “Just as Scott has come to the fore, unexpected Lord, you’ve kept him hidden for a time such as this. Lord, we pray that the whole of the body of Christ in Australia would grasp the value of what you’ve done, Lord, and get behind our new leader … and that the next election would be won so that godly principles would be put into place, rather than the enemy having his way.”

    And no, I am not making that up or even exaggerating.

    And they want us to be afraid of Sharia Law being imposed on us??? Or foreign influence on elections??? The Pentacostals are a clear and present danger who have said “the body of Christ is going to have influence in the political arena of this nation.”

    With the far right religious zealots, the minerals council, the Murdoch media, and the racist xenophobes all lining up together, this could become a very ugly place.

  16. Ricardo29

    Although not directly on this topic, several comments mention Dave Sharma, as Lib nomination for Wentworth. I wonder if his being a former ambassador to Israel means we might ( though hopefully not) have another pro-Israel voice in a Parliament already top heavy with them. What hope then for a more principled position on Palestine and an honest appraisal of the Israeli warmongers and illegal settlers?

  17. Kaye Lee


    This article by Sharma about Trump’s embassy move might answer your question.

    “Hamas compelled civilians to attend these protests and then went about injecting them with violence and provoking conflict with Israeli security forces (by Hamas’s own accounts, over 50 of those killed were Hamas operatives). Why? Because such clashes, with the widespread international media coverage and inevitable condemnation of Israel they generate, strengthen Hamas’ political hand. Cynical in its disregard for human life, it is an asymmetric propaganda tool which Hamas uses to great effect.

    A new-found spirit of pragmatism shows signs of overcoming the failed absolutism that has bedevilled the region’s politics for so many years. Having up-ended the table with its Jerusalem move, an opening exists for the United States to push on and address other seemingly intractable elements of the Arab-Israeli conflict.”

  18. Kyran

    Seeking the imaginary, the elusive illusive, has been a religious quest for millennia now. It seems only fitting to amend the quest to accommodate the needs of the information age, for the new elusive illusive – authenticity.
    The current muppet, like his predecessors, seems to be experiencing difficulty with the concept. Who would have thought authenticity was so hard to establish in the information age?
    As Mr Walter pointed out, “All the authenticity of a three dollar note”. Ironic that, however imaginary, a three dollar note is greatly exaggerating his worth.
    Mr Mills comment highlights the conflict between the authentic (or real) and the confected, cosmetic world of our freshly minted messiah.
    “In Question Time, the PM and the Attorney General referenced the Ruddock Report on Religious Freedoms but when called on to release the report [the government have had it since May] they declined to do so even though, it is convention to table any documents or reports mentioned during parliamentary debates.
    At 13.36 on the 11/9, The Guardian’s ‘live blog’ reported the following.

    “The government has announced when it will deliver the national apology to survivors of Institutional Child Sexual Abuse: 22 October.
    There are only 800 places, with 400 going to organisations that support survivors, and the other 400 open to a ballot. The attorney general’s department released this statement:
    The National Apology, to be delivered at Parliament House in Canberra, will acknowledge and apologise for the appalling abuse endured by vulnerable children, by the very people that were supposed to care for them, leaving immeasurable and lasting damage.
    The National Apology will pay tribute to victims and survivors of institutional child sexual abuse, many of whom have so bravely shared their stories through the Royal Commission into Institutional Child Sexual Abuse, with the aim of ensuring the shameful practices are never repeated in the future.”

    In the real world, the authentic world, there is absolutely no way this government can issue such an apology and ignore the ongoing institutionalised systemic abuse of children in our First People’s communities, or in our gulags (offshore and onshore), or the prevalence of bullying and the increasing rates of suicide amongst our young, or the demeaning and belittlement of young women. The list of abuses of our young is growing on a daily basis. Most of our young have a better understanding of what is actually happening to the environment (that we will pass to them in such a damaged state it will likely be irredeemable) than any of the muppets currently masquerading as government. Yet another ongoing abuse of our young that these muppets can’t even contemplate, so beholden are they to their corporate masters.
    From now till then, this muppet’s minions in the MSM and his platoon’s of spin doctors will be undertaking one of their greatest cons. How to make an apology sound genuine and authentic when it is rendered disingenuous or inauthentic by your ongoing abuses.
    Rest assured, they’ll try. But, in that landscape, there is no way they can possibly start a conversation on allowing greater freedoms for the institutions that perpetrated the abuses. Not even these muppets could possibly be that stupid.
    Mind you, they do insist on parading their stupidity.
    Thank you Ms Lee and commenters. Take care

  19. Peter F

    Jagger … instead of saying “his opinions might change, as did his predecessor”(sic),, you might said that “he might reverse his opinion, as did his predecessor”.

  20. Clive Manson

    Panic not!

    Religion, or lack thereof, climate change, or lack thereof, policy, or lack thereof, NEG, or lack thereof.

    Need I go on. You get the drift…..

    You can rest assured, whatever the problem, it will be “Labor’s fault” as Chrissy Pine recently pointed out.

    A catch cry for multiple sins.

  21. lawrence winder

    Scummo is an authentically nasty piece of work.

  22. May Hem

    i call him “the gabbler”. never shuts up – just watch the many foot-in-the-mouth disasters to come. sure enough, in his birth chart he has mercury in gemini – perhaps there is one excuse for his endless gibbering.

    if only he had a “mute” button like my TV.

  23. Kaye Lee

    His tone of voice really annoys me. It’s like – it’s damn obvious i’m right and if you don’t agree with me you are a fool. It’s haranguing.

  24. Andrew Smith

    A recent opinion piece in the NYT:

    ‘“White men,” an obscure Australian academic named Charles Henry Pearson predicted in his 1893 book “National Life and Character: A Forecast,” would be “elbowed and hustled, and perhaps even thrust aside” by people they had long regarded as their inferiors — “black and yellow races.” China, in particular, would be a major threat. Pearson, prone to terrors of racial extinction while living in a settler colony in an Asian neighborhood, thought it was imperative to defend “the last part of the world, in which the higher races can live and increase freely, for the higher civilization.”

    His prescriptions for racial self-defense thunderously echoed around the white Anglosphere, the community of men with shared historical ties to Britain.’

  25. New England Cocky

    @Ricardo29 and Kaye Le: What is the difference between a Nazi jackboot on the throat of a Jewish teenager in the Warsaw ghetto during 1943 and an Israeli Defence Force jackboot on the throat of a Palestinian teenager in the West Bank or Gaza during 2018?

    ANSWER: 75 years.

  26. LOVO

    NEC, that’s a sad joke….and I’m not having a go at you 😕 ……and I’m not trying to be politically correct (a.k.a. responsible) . BUT….as a species, as a race, one would expect that certain members of our race would have learnt the lessons of history….and thats what makes your joke so sad… of all the ‘peoples’ of the human race.. one would think that the people of Israel would have a greater capacity for empathy, or, at the very least, understand that jackboot diplomacy never ends well. 😱 sad
    But having said that. ………. A: 75 yrs bwwahaha 😆

  27. paul walter

    Thanks, Kyran.

    Actually, if you read many of the comments it starts to get a bit sad by the end as a more complete portrait emerges (a bit like Dorian Grey?)

    No doubt, we are a very odd species.

    Scott thinks he is Oliver Twist, but I think, more Ralph Nickleby, but I’ll not comment further, for obvious reasons.

  28. Terence Mills

    The rusted on Liberal branch members of Tony Abbott’s Sydney electorate of Warringah have just voted for him to represent them at the next election.

    He ran unopposed and only managed to secure only 46 votes with 38 others rejecting his renomination.

    If the party loyalists in Warringah are so clearly divided you would have to ask how the rest of the electorate will vote come the election. The question also arises, had they had a good alternative candidate how would he have got on – evidently they don’t have any aspirational women in the Warringah branch : that’s a worry !

  29. MöbiusEcko

    I would laud Morrison’s call for a much needed royal commission into aged care if I thought he was being genuine and concerned about the sector. But for mine it’s a distraction from the financial sector royal commission he voted against 26 times, his party falling to pieces and his leadership lunacy.

    This royal commision is more about Morrison wanting kudos and denting Labor’s extolment for their worthy royal commissions than any concern for our elderly in care. He doesn’t need a royal commission to fix that sector.

  30. Kaye Lee


    Morrison is shit scared about the Four Corners program that is about to air over the next two weeks. Politicians have been interviewed so they know what is coming.

    The program is being produced by Mary Fallon. This is the fourth Royal Commission that her work at Four Corners has prompted – she did the story Unholy Silence that helped kick off the child sex abuse RC, she did the Don Dale story, she did the Murray-Darling water theft story, and now, this.

    In her words, “The attempted preemptive publicity and announcements for this 4Cs is pretty unprecedented.”

    They are worried.

  31. Terence Mills

    It has been announced that NSW MP Ann Sudmalis has advised Mr Morrison she will not re-contest her seat of Gilmore and that she will quit at the next election.

    This is the same Ann Sudmalis that Turnbull had to save during her recent pre-selection. At that time Turnbull went to her electorate, committed $155 million to a new bridge and was reported as saying :

    Asked if Ms Sudmalis had his backing, and was the best person for the job, Mr Turnbull said: “Ann is a phenomenal candidate, member [and] advocate”.

    “She has been supported again and again by the people of Gilmore,” he said.

    “Look, we’re going to have a new bridge. Who did that? Ann Sudmalis. Whose advocacy, whose persistence delivered that?

    The rats are leaving the sinking Liberal ship !

  32. Kronomex

    “We’re doing really crappy in the polls Pastor, what should we do to take attention away from how bad we are?” asked the Deputy PM
    “Hm, let me think…ah-ha, god just told me that we should have more royal commissions. This time starting with aged care and if that fails we can always have another go the unions.” replied the PM.
    “That’s a good idea. Should I join you on the floor as you roll around gibbering…I mean speaking in tongues?”

  33. MöbiusEcko

    Ann Sudmalis is my member. She took over from Joanna Gash, who she is not a patch on. John Howard ignored Gash for almost the entirety of his stewardship in government, only visiting the electorate at the eleventh-hour before his government was turfed, and only because a safe seat was becoming marginal because of his neglect of it. Gash is another of the Liberal eschewed women. Deserving of a senior position within government, she was sidestepped so many times that in the end it saw her quit the party for local politics.

    On the other hand, Sudmalis is an example of a woman who is not the best person for the job. She has taken an already marginal seat because of Howard to a perilous seat that everything is pointing to the Liberals losing.

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