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Scott Morrison Dazzles At The National Press Club…

As a teacher, I’m aware that most kids tell the truth most of the time. It occasionally stuns students when I believe them without demanding proof. “How do you know he’s not lying,” someone will occasionally ask. The answer, even though I never tell them, is quite simple. Liars invariably give themselves away with a little smirk which says more clearly than words, “That stupid teacher bought it when I said that I was late because I was helping Mr Smedley pack up the chairs.”

Of course, if you ask the student to go and get a note from Mr Smedley, he or she will, for the first time ever, need to get on with their work and it’s really, really insulting that you should question their honesty.

I don’t know why this occurs to me as I write about Mr Morrison’s dazzling performance at the National Press Club. And, yes, I was smirking as I wrote that.

While much has been written about the PM’s inability to find more than two modes of expression – Shouty McShoutface and the Jerk with the Smirk – I haven’t seen anybody suggest that his behaviour is exactly like that of an adolescent. Smug, when they think they’ve got away with something, and angry when they haven’t. For those of you who’ve never dealt with a teenager, you may be surprised to find that one of their favourite tactics when they’re caught doing something wrong is outrage: “You only caught me because you hate me and you didn’t catch George yesterday, so everything is really your fault and you should apologise!!!”

From yesterday’s performance, which Peta Credlin gave “full marks, we learnt a number of things:

  • The Federal Government doesn’t have the power to do things unless the states ask for help because – apparently – they can’t declare a national emergency unless asked to by the states.
  • Some of the states didn’t ask for help, so why not go to Hawaii?
  • Climate change is real so we should just buy more sunscreen and prepare for hotter times.
  • We need to cut down lots and lots of trees because they’ll just burn so maybe the Commonwealth should have more power to make this happen.
  • We need more gas so maybe the Commonwealth should have more power
  • This government is taking the Auditor-General’s report very seriously, but no rules were broken and guidelines aren’t rules.
  • While the Minister should have the final power to make decisions, it was different when Ros Kelly and any Labor Minister made a decision because they need to follow all guidelines.
  • Even though Senator McKenzie was responsible for the grants, Mr Morrison was able to reject categorically that the colour-coding was about targeting marginally electorates, because he told us: “That’s not why I did it!” which suggests that he was involved in the decision-making process.
  • All of the grants were about female change rooms because Mr Morrison doesn’t want girls changing in the car or behind the sheds.
  • He was late because he was helping Mr Smedley pack up the chairs.

Of course, you’ve probably noticed a recent tactic by our Prime Minister of telling the journalist, “I reject the premise of your question.” Like so many other things with this government, this seems to be acceptable without any sort of scrutiny. While Labor keeps getting asked how much their emissions reduction targets will cost, nobody ever asks the PM how much will it cost to “beat” our targets.

Perhaps, the next interviewer could try something like this:

“Mr Morrison, are you concerned with the lack of urgency with which the Attorney-General is developing his ICAC legislation?”

“Sorry, I reject the premise of your question.”

“Which premise is that?”

“The premise that there’s no urgency. We won’t be rushed into making a poor decision and there’s no need to panic.”

“So you’re saying you’ll take your time and get it right? Well, I reject your definition of urgency.”

“Sorry, but I reject your rejection of our definition of urgency.”

“On what grounds.”

“On the grounds that we are giving this our urgent attention.”

“So what happens with things that aren’t urgent, if the urgent ones miss deadlines.”

“Like I made clear earlier, we won’t be panicked into making poor decisions.”

“Well, I reject the premise of your assumption that you made that clear.”

“Look, the Australian people aren’t interested in a semantic argument. They want us to get this right.”

“I reject your assumption inherent in your premise, because I think that you did promise to have legislation ready by the end of last year and your rejection of my premise suggests that your promise…”

“I am sure that the Australia people are more concerned with things like the strong economy that we’ve created.”

“And which offshore tax haven is that in?”

Speaking of urgency, how long do you think it’ll take for that report on whether Bridget McKenzie breached ministerial standards to reach the PM’s desk? It’s been a week and nothing yet. I mean, it’s not like they need to wait for DNA samples to come back from the lab.

But I guess it’s hard to convince someone to take one for the team when everyone else is playing for themselves.


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  1. Phil Pryor

    A politically perverted personality (Hah! a skunk’s fart has personality?) and there have been thousands, is not desirable, yet the process of political appointment attracts the worst types. Egocentric deficients, e g, Jack Howard, totally engrossed in self image, need a rigged race, a rails run, a marked card, for in real life they are and were mediocrities and would remain so. Some like Morrison delude themselves with ludicrous superstition, believing themselves, saved, anointed, chosen, selected, blessed. Never mind the shit stuffing oozing out. There is no competence, no promise no effing hope for us in such a dud dickheaded devious dose of delirium.

  2. Andy56

    The more he spins , the more he corners himself. Its like the big lie has to get bigger to cover the last lie. Its starting to become very obvious. Instead of saying, we made a mistake, he doubles down. This house of cards is looking very shaky. $158m for a publicity stunt, another $100m to cover their tracks on the sports rorts but woe if your on centerlink payments. A christian doesnt have to lie.

    PS, an honorable mention to the biggest fckwit of the decade goes to one Andrew Robb. Normally i dont wish harm to anyone, but this guy deserves it in spades. Totally self centered and selfish. He sabotaged the future and feels good about it ! Yes, bigger than Tony. Interesting read in the guardian.

  3. Egalitarian

    He went early on the fear cards with border protection, border security and terrorism and having a prosperous strong economy.
    Strong for whom?A great acting and wordsmithing performance straight from Central Casting.Or maybe Alan gave him a pep talk.

  4. OldWomBat

    While the fundamental corruption of this government is trumpeted on a daily basis in forums such as this, it rarely seems to break out into the wider conscientiousness. Perhaps it’s time for a more public approach, such as the Sardine movement in Italy which consists of public gatherings of people from all sorts of backgrounds whose common message is their opposition to racism, hatred and corruption. In the recent Italian elections in Emilia-Romagna, the movement is credited with increasing the number of people who voted and the subsequent defeat of the right-wing candidate.

  5. Egalitarian

    Phil He should be charged for treason.

  6. Ill fares the land

    Scotty from Marketing (“Scofromo”) really has the capacity to surprise. He is the archetypal hollow man – when he has a script and can more or less follow it without being challenged when he is blustering or simply lying, he thinks he appears to be competent and, as he so desperately craves, in charge. But, if you are one of his decreasing pool of blind supporters (that Credlin is one tells you a great deal about those who still believe Scofromo is doing a good job), you might be excused for thinking that during the bushfires he was mostly caught unawares and once he had time to settle himself and catch his breath, there might be some improvement – that there was something resembling a real person inside. Well guess what? There isn’t. You would think that he would have had clear and unequivocal feedback about how utterly insensitive, out-of-his-depth, puerile and incompetent he looked during the bushfires, but if he has had that feedback, he ignored it – yesterday was more of the same from a person who is facade only. He blundered, blustered, buffooned, bozoed and boofheaded his way through his speech and the subsequent questions, not that I could watch much of it, such is the extent to which I am repulsed by Mr Hollowman. There truly is nothing within. Zero empathy, the emotional intelligence of a teenager, utterly self-deluded about who he really is, belligerent when his drivel is challenged and with absolutely no concept of leadership. It is staggering that for someone who craves authority as much as Scofomo and who is convinced he is the best person for the PM role, he has no skills at all for his role.

  7. Michael Grelis

    Your scenario where this Inveterate liar is asked a number of questions designed to explain his comments could not happen. Journalists are only allowed one question, with no follow up questions permitted. So one q is asked, he blusters, bamboozles and bullshits. End of story. Moves on. Rinse and repeat. Smirks and feels totally satisfied with himself, journos report what he’s said- the great untroubled population barely notice it. And nothing changes.

  8. Pingback: Scott Morrison Dazzles At The National Press Club… #auspol - News Oz

  9. Andy56

    Michael, i too see it but i have a different take. The more he lies and spins, the harder it is to maintain. The economic reports keep coming and it gets bleaker and bleaker, yet, the “economy is robust”. A lot of people have been blinded by the “mouth” and lies, but its getting to the point that one fear will be overcome by other fears more powerful. Not to mention the weekly scandals that absolutely drain the government of any momentum. It just builds momentum to the point of desintegration. I have a lot of pop corn left over.

  10. guest

    There is one point of policy which really upsets me, and that is the matter of coal. There is a schizoid craziness about coal and Climate Change.

    Yes, says Morrison, we promote “climate action now!”

    He says, those Indians and the Chinese are burning coal and emitting much more carbon than we are – and aren’t they wicked – but we will continue to sell high quality coal to them because if we don’t, some else will sell them lower quality coal.

    The assumption is that we are doing far more about Climate Change than China and India will ever do. By selling coal we are lifting millions out of poverty – conveniently ignoring the fact that solar cooking and lighting is already doing much in India.

    Then there is this hope that getting gas “from under our feet” is a good way to transition to “all the other possible technologies”.

    First of all, gas saves 30% of the emissions of coal (not 50% as espoused recently) and continues to add to carbon emissions. What exactly are these new technologies? And how is it that the Coalition is speaking as if it invented renewable energy?

  11. Pilot

    Quick one…….
    Your last sentence in the article Rossco. Bit of a boo boo ol’ mate.
    “…….everyone else is playing for themselves.”
    Ross, “for”? I can assure you that, even though I’ve been out of school for nearly 50 years, the usage here was quite wrong. The most appropriate word to use here, to ensure clarity, and no chance of misinterpretation, the word that should have been used is “with”.
    Now, please write “Liberals do not play for themselves, they play WITH themselves.” out 100 times so you don’t forget.

  12. DrakeN

    Well, Pilot, “with” “for” and “by” themselves are all appropriate.
    The first is self evident, the second unquestionable, and the third demonstrated by the schismatics which play out in the Party rooms and conflicting public interviews.

  13. Pilot

    DrakeN, “I reject the premise of your answer.”

    Your right of course, but I just could help myself having a dig at a teacher… 🤣🤣🤣

  14. guest

    To see a big list of Morrison failures read Nikki Savva’s assessment “no one to blame but himself” in a free copy of the Murdoch rag or at the inimitable loonpond blog.

    It will confirm your criticisms of Morrison here at AIMN.

    The worm has turned?

  15. Rossleigh

    Perhaps, I can just cut out the “for themselves” and leave it as “…everyone else is just playing!”


    “Any day now Scott will tell Bridget that there’s no ‘u’ in team!”

  16. Kaye Lee

    Scotty’s speech would have been great for bingo – he mentioned all the buzz words, all the catch phrases, all the dog whistles that the dinosaur backbenchers wanted to hear. It was a grab bag of nothing.

  17. Pilot

    You could always convert a line from Seinfeld, “No team for you!!”

    Just write your lines and hand ’em in……We saw the smirk…..

  18. king1394

    If individual journalists are only allowed one question each, why can’t they plan a series of questions to be asked , or follow up on answers. Why do they each seem to own their individual planned question and ignore what has gone before. Journalists might achieve a coherent narrative if they worked together

  19. Diane

    Russel from Gruen has obviously been giving him tips on how not to answer questions but make it look initially like he has – he looked so bloody pleased with himself when, in reply to a question along the lines of “Do you think it’s wrong to use taxpayer money for your own personal benefit?” He replied “You may as well ask, does the sun come up in the morning, and I can tell you, yes it does!” Smug Grin.

    So he answered a totally different question, and didn’t answer the original one at all.

    It’s so totally transparent and yet he seems to think no-one has noticed! Arrrrrggggghhhhhhhhhhhh

  20. whatever

    During the last month or so, when there was nothing whatsoever that could be dressed-up as a “Good news for the Govt.!!!” story, our ABC has been delivering a steady stream of “Record-Breaking performance on the Stock Market!!!” stories.

    Despite the fact that most of these upticks usually peter-out by the end of the day’s trading, our ABC regularly gives time to spivs to encourage mug-punters to lose their money.

  21. rob031

    @ Kaye Lee. Scotty’s speech would have been great for bingo –

    Try this pretty complete list supplied by a Guardian commenter:


    (Our useless PM’S strategy … a lot, but answer nothing:)

    I believe I have answered that.
    I am not going to comment on ….
    I reject that.
    I believe people are more interested in……
    Now is not the time for political point scoring.
    The more important issue here is…..
    The real question we should be asking is…….. (not yours).
    I won’t be distracted by…..
    I don’t accept the premise of the question (I don’t accept the question)
    That is just smear …. (I am caught out).
    I make no apologies for…….. (something he should).
    I leave that in the bubble.
    Let me take you to our track record on that ….. (talk about something else).
    We are doing ….……(something that they are not).
    What the real Australians are interested in ….. (nothing about the question).
    Hold on, I am answering the previous question….. (still deflecting it).
    I do not discuss “on water” issues.
    Let me start by saying ….(nothing about the question).
    That’s not for me to comment on.
    We will meet & beat…. (something that they won’t)
    Our government has always recognised …..(something that they didn’t).
    My thoughts & prayers go out to …..
    You will have to ask …………. about that.
    I don’t comment on gossip.
    I don’t accept …….
    Labor did it.
    Let me remind you when Labor was in power ………..
    How good is……..

    (All he does is reflect it or spin it!!!!! Drives me crazy!!!)

  22. Peter F

    I congratulate all of you who had the strength to watch more than I did: I gave up after about two minutes of hell to save myself from self destruction.

  23. Jennifer Demas

    From Don Micheal Corleone, Sage on corruption, “All my life I kept trying to go up in society, where everything higher up was legal, but the higher I go the crookeder it becomes, where the hell does it end”, best bit and the media tsar fraternity self righteously make it look and sound legal. As for the talk a lot and say nothing Morrison, he is today what he was yesterday and will be tomorrow, “You an out distance that which is running after you but not what is running inside you” (Rwandan Proverb), he knows it and the fraternity knows it. Morrison got the fraternity well and truly pegged just as with the then loquacious Turnbull the media fraternity really had/have no idea, but he sounded impressive and smart, game over for any semblance of 21st century Australia, price on carbon, digitisation, better deal and share of the natural resources, etc etc.

  24. Henry Rodrigues

    Every time this arsehole opens his stinking mouth to deflect, obfuscate, lie, and then smirk, grin and scratch himself, he is only doing what comes natural to a god bothering hypocrite. He knows Murdoch and the rest of the fcking media will cover his back no matter what. He will deny, confuse, just refuse to answer any question. Why ? Because the stupid bloody people re-elected this bastard and that’s enough reason and authority he needs to continue as he is.

    Does anyone see any resemblance to a certain orange headed cretin screwing up another country 10000 kms away ?

  25. paul walter

    He is in deep denial, most of all about himself. The end of his Prime Ministerial honeymoon will only be the more painful for him for his stubbornness, he looks like he is going to have to have the nonsenses knocked out of him.

    In the meantime the damage, some thing we have probably all been complicit in/with.

    Paradise Lost,

    “Human, too human”.

  26. Wam

    Yes peter I normally like press club and have a laugh at the trauma the occasional question causes (rarely but with smirko I cannot bear the disingenuous smirking slime.
    Sadly Albo sees smirko and Bridget as colleagues and his standards prevents him from excitingthe autocue journos into a frenzy.
    Still it is possible Rupert may go and the young Murdoch my sink smirko. At the first sniff of that god will embrace global warming by man to order a stop.

  27. Patricia

    I am with you King 1394. If the media had any sense of what they are supposed to represent in a democracy they would get together and set out a series of questions and subsequent questions, that if journalists have only one question then the next journalist could follow on when scottyfrommarketing refuses to answer the first question and keep that question in play until he has a melt down and stalks off the stage.
    He is playing them and his smirking just shows how much he enjoys it. The media are just grist for his mill and they are playing right into his hands. They need to get smart or they will become truly irrelevant.

  28. Paul Davis

    Speaking of all that glitters……

    The ABC is advertising the panel for the much vaunted return of their flagship current affairs show Insiders this sunday. In the interest of balance, the diverse group of selected commentators to kick off this year’s show are Nikki Savva, Renee Viellaris and Phil Coorey. I dunno how David Speers is gunna maintain order. It will be bloody, not like those genteel stoushes between David Marr and Gerard Hendersen.

  29. Kaye Lee

    Oh wow…..Savva from the Australian (though not necessarily a Morrison fan), Viellaris from the Courier Mail (don’t know her but I do know the Murdoch rag), and Coorey who is not going to jeopardise his sources by being too critical. Michael Stutchbury is Coorey’s boss at the AFR. I still find that amazing. He is dumb as a post and a Liberal party apologist through and through.

    I don’t see a bloodbath. I anticipate disappointment. This is what I was afraid of. But we shall see.

    And just to underline the decline, Q&A is giving Jim Molan a platform….again. Why??????

  30. paul walter

    Wait…go back one..yes, Re Paul Davis, here it is…”advertising”.

    I find the increasing tendency of the ABC to near saturation a bit disturbing.

    Anyone else noticed this? Am not suggesting they are out to privatise or commercialise, but isn’t there a sort of inexorable process.

    The Tory Beast never changes. So near to what passes for a heart, the destruction of the BBC and ABC.

    Back to Dr Who.

    It seems in the multiverse there can be any number of Doctors?


    Just saw your comment Kaye Lee so will offer thanks for now, while the window is still open.

  31. paul walter

    Just thought..Isn’t Dr Who merely the extension of the “Magic Faraway Tree” book we had read to us as children?


    It is time for journalists to refuse to attend his press meetings if he is not going to answer questions.

  33. Lawrence Winder

    Yes, a dazzling “performance”…. pity, “all that glitters is not gold…,” though!

  34. Barry Thompson.

    I watched all of Morrison’s speech purely to see if he got criticised over the sports fiasco. Doing so was excruciating. The man could talk under water. Why use 50 words when 500 will do? He also purposely gives long winded answers to fairly straight forward questions-a ploy to limit the number of questions.
    Mark, Andrew and the woman from the Guardian whose name I have forgotten, had the guts to front him, only to receive the smug bullshit which is his stock in trade.
    I was pissed off when Laura Tingle’s question was cut off because of time constraints.

  35. Harry Lime

    Barry Thompson,
    The man exists only in the vacuum of his seriously misplaced self belief,the hollowest of hollow men, and boy ,doesn’t it show.

  36. Kronomex

    Smirkochio, the pile of faecel matter that will never be a human being.

    I wonder if I adapt and evolve will I become eligible to go to the magic sky fairy happy kingdom in the sky when the rupture…sorry, rapture, occurs. Will I be able take everything I own with me? Will that poor Jobson Growth be vacuumed up as well?

  37. Max Gross

    It beggars belief that Australians are letting this crime syndicate (for that’s what the LNP is) get away with lie after lie, rort after rort, failure after failure. Are we really just going to sit around watching the place burn to the ground for another two years???

  38. Grant

    The thing that strikes me most about this piece is that we really had a Mr. Smedley at my high school.

  39. leefe

    “Speaking of urgency, how long do you think it’ll take for that report on whether Bridget McKenzie breached ministerial standards to reach the PM’s desk? It’s been a week and nothing yet.”

    We’re still waiting for the AFP to do something about Angus Taylor, so . . .

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