Scott Morrison isn’t a racist. But he will ruthlessly pursue whatever he considers will give him political advantage.
Remember the arm around Turnbull? An embrace that had something of the Godfather kiss to it. Morrison’s relationship with race and ethnicity has a similar feel about it.
He will cultivate relationships with certain groups and people. Then change hats and demonise whole cohorts of others to create a political narrative.
In 2011, it was reported that Morrison urged the shadow cabinet to capitalise on the electorate’s growing concerns about “Muslim immigration”, “Muslims in Australia” and the “inability” of Muslim migrants to integrate, as an issue on which the Opposition should concentrate its political attack.
The article also referenced Morrison’s comments on the cost of asylum-seeker funerals and his role in the controversial decision to cut a Howard government program to fund schools in Indonesia, reporting “colleagues are privately questioning whether he is trying to pursue an anti-Muslim political strategy unilaterally.”
When Morrison pandered to the history culture war crowd, putting down the Black Lives Matter protesters and claiming there had been no slavery in Australia, he enraged the Indigenous community.
“Morrison is utilising Trump’s dangerous and divisive rhetoric founded on racism and elitism by implying that the whole history of Indigenous struggle and culture in Australia is subservient to the white history and white culture of Australia.”
It isn’t personal with Scott – it’s all strategic.
Brian Houston went from being a close personal friend, mentor and spiritual guide, to ‘I haven’t seen him in years’, basically overnight. What was once seen as something for the cameras to lap up was now denied.
Morrison’s denials of his part in taking down Michael Towke in his original preselection have as much credibility as his denials that he rubbished electric vehicles before the last election.
As has been shown in the NSW Liberal preselection debacle, Morrison will do anything to get and retain power.
He’s not racist, but he willingly exploits the racism of others. Scott looks proudly on the success of his demonisation and hostage holding of “illegal” immigrants.
In late 2016, Morrison’s successor as Immigration Minister, Peter Dutton, in talking about gang violence and the threat of terrorism in Australia, said Malcolm Fraser made mistakes in bringing “some people” in in the 1970s and we were paying the price for that now.
When pressed about who he meant, Dutton singled out people of Lebanese-Muslim background and pushed for tougher immigration laws – all part of the national security drum beat(-up).
As Concetta Fierravanti-Wells said, Morrison will run with the pack and hunt with the hounds. He has no moral compass as shown by him providing the Murdoch press with private texts from another world leader to try to show he wasn’t a liar. Now he is seen as not only a liar but a pariah.
Morrison isn’t racist but he has no hesitation about throwing anyone to the wolves if he thinks it will save his hide.
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