So, just in case you haven’t quite understood the past couple of weeks, Labor clearly have leadership tensions because Albanese made a speech where he undermined Bill Shorten’s class warfare agenda by suggesting that Labor should work with business if it were to win the election. No, it wasn’t an attempt to calm the concerns of those who were afeared that after the election, Labor would refuse to acknowledge private property rights and send everyone with assets of more than ten million dollars off to a re-eduction camp. Apparently it was an attempt to overthrow Shorten, whose leadership has attempted to stir up class hatred by assertions such as: “Poor people do drive”, “People earning under $90,000 deserve tax cuts too”, “There needs to be an investigation into the behaviour of banks” and, even more controversially, “Not everything the union movement has done has been corrupt and evil”!
Meanwhile, on the Liberal side of politics, everyone has united behind Malcolm Turnbull. Tony Abbott has decided to stop sulking and is working extra hard in order to ensure that Mr Turnbull knows exactly what to do. Tony has, in recent days, helped Malcolm by instructing him on better ways to run the country.
Take Paris – as the Nazis said way back in World War Two. Not wishing Mr Turnbull to waste his valuable time and limited working memory considering what to do about Paris, Mr Abbott helpfully told Mal that signing up to it was a dreadful mistake. Of course, it was a mistake that was made under the stewardship of Tony Abbott, so announcing what a bad move it was, took away any need for Mr Turnbull to worry about how he was going to break it to Tony that he was actually going to change one of his policies. How helpful was that?
Just pull out, was Abbott’s message. Perhaps it would have been better if he’d give the same message to Barnaby about a year ago, but whatever. This enables Turnbull to do what he does best: Follow Tony’s lead without thinking too much about it. As Abbott explained in his speech, when his government signed up to the Paris agreement:
“My government set a 2030 emissions reduction target on the basis that this was more-or-less what could be achieved without new government programmes and without new costs on the economy.”
In other words, we set an emissions reduction target that we could achieve without actually doing anything. Sort of like a diet where you just eat what you like, and then hope you don’t weigh too much more than you did before going on the diet.
Or as Abbott said in another part of the speech, he didn’t understand that he was signing up to something that would result in lower emissions every year, leading up to 2030. He just presumed that it would be like his contract with the Australian people and everyone would have forgotten about it. Or that people would take it as a “binding commitment”! He presumed that it was like an election promise or wedding vows. You know, the sort of thing that one says because everyone expects you to say something and if you say, “Well, I sort of think that I’d like to keep my word, but hey, tomorrow’s another day and, don’t the bridesmaids look lovely and shouldn’t we be toasting them?”, then it’s quite likely to be misinterpreted, like when he said that pensioners wouldn’t be getting cuts, people presumed he meant to the pension, rather than being given the strap.
Tony followed up today by telling us how nobody was dissenting in the Liberal Party: “I got to say there aren’t that many opportunities for dissent in the party room these days. Party room procedure has changed under Prime Minister Turnbull.”
See, everyone in the Liberal Party is on the same page. No dissent in the party room.
I bet Bill Shorten wishes he had loyalty like that from his party!!