Since seizing the reins a little over two months ago, Scott Morrison has demonstrated the most appalling judgement on pretty much everything.
Businesses are loudly expressing their despair about the lack of any policy on climate change and energy and we are hardly likely to get one with the people he chose for Environment and Energy Minsters. Thanks to Alan Jones, instead of any sensible discussion, we now talk about “fair dinkum power”, “big sticks”, and meeting emissions reduction “in a canter”.
Floated threats to intervene to break up energy, and now petrol, companies – the so-called ‘big stick’ – have been met with great concern by the ACCC, not to mention the sovereign risk it suggests to new investors.
The Indigenous community have expressed their disgust at having Tony Abbott thrust upon them to make recommendations about Indigenous education. In an astonishing display of cognitive dissonance during his current photo tour, Abbott said boosting funding to remote communities was “part of the answer” to fixing fundamental social problems. This from the man who slashed half a billion from funding for Indigenous support services and who described living in remote communities as a “lifestyle choice”.
The captain’s pick to announce publicly that the government was going to “discuss” moving our embassy to Jerusalem and pulling out of the Iran nuclear deal was a foreign policy disaster which Malcolm Turnbull was sent to Indonesia to smooth over. But under attack from Alan Jones, Scott Morrison pretended Malcolm had acted outside his brief, something that was just not credible at first glance and proven to be a lie when Morrison was forced to admit Turnbull had been briefed on handling the embassy matter and any ensuing threats to trade negotiations.
In July, Troy Bramston tweeted that Craig Kelly had lost the numbers to retain preselection for his seat of Hughes – “Craig’s so busy on Sky News he’s forgotten to talk to his branches,” one Liberal said. Yet Scott, in another recent captain’s pick, decided to override the preselectors to insist that they endorse Kelly – the most strident and ill-informed climate change denier in parliament. So much for Abbott’s push for more democracy for the branches.
As Mr Kelly posts on Facebook that any supposed threat to Pacific islands from climate change is just “climate alarmism”, Papua New Guinea prime minister Peter O’Neill has used a meeting with Scott Morrison to publicly remind him about the importance of Australian leadership in tackling climate change.
Soon after becoming prime minister two months ago, Mr Morrison decided not to attend the annual Pacific Islands Forum, sending his foreign minister instead. At the conference, Australia signed a declaration describing climate change as the “single greatest threat” to the Pacific. Apparently they forgot to brief Craig Kelly about that.
Scott doesn’t seem to let competence, or lack thereof, influence his choices. Stuart Robert was Scott’s numbers man who, despite multitudinous scandals surrounding him (including the awarding of millions of dollars in government contracts to a company that Mr Robert’s elderly parents didn’t know they were directors of) has been rewarded with the Assistant Treasurer’s job.
Peter Dutton is now horribly conflicted as the NZ deal for refugee resettlement is on, then off, then on, depending on the audience. Children can’t be removed from the islands because that will make the people smugglers fill the boats with kids and they are just faking illness anyway, but quietly we will get them off in time for Santa to visit, just don’t tell. And how come NZ is a pull factor but the US isn’t? Immigration is good for the economy, or bad for congestion, once again depending on your audience. This is the malarkey Morrison has tasked Dutton to sell.
Sitting on the Ruddock review into religious freedom has just made it turn into a festering debate about discrimination which has now seen school students launch a campaign to ask principals to give up the right to sack gay teachers.
The ‘marketing of ScoMo’ just keeps getting worse, the latest example being his decision to chug-a-lug a beer and put the empty cup on his head at the behest of a chanting crowd of cricket fans. Responsible drinking?
Scott has six months to convince us that he and his “united team” are the best option to govern the country. At the moment it looks more like an amateur Karaoke night at the local pub.
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