The first anniversary of an Abbott led government is almost upon us. What yardstick do we use to judge its performance? For me there is only one. That being that all governments exist to serve the people and by extension the common good. In this respect the current government is a wretched failure.
Tony Abbott as leader has, probably because of his natural disposition toward negativity, failed to ignite the imagination of the Australian people. He has tried to adapt his pugilistic depressive personality characteristics to leadership, and it simply hasn’t worked for him. Abbott has never been a popular politician. He is universally perceived as a revengeful vulgar liar, and untrustworthy. His disposition towards saying anything that suits him with an expectancy that he should be believed has done nothing but reinforce people’s aversion of him. It may have been a special brand of hate politics that won him victory but once in power people expect governance not vindictiveness. All of this is reinforced in a preferred PM status of just 30%.
Judging Abbott’s first year to date is made somewhat easy (if based on a criteria of common good fairness) because it has, or will, impact on so many vulnerable people.
First and foremost in the public’s mind has been the blatant lying. All of which is well documented and authenticated. So much so that Abbott and those of the same ilk, his ministers, cannot deny it.
However, Abbott tries to do so with a stoic stony faced indignation which takes a certain type of megalomania. And it’s his self-righteousness, the inability to concede another view in the face of contrary evidence that earns the wrath of people.
‘‘Why is the Prime Minister lying and why is he lying about lying?’’
The Hocky/Abbott Budget is still craving legitimacy weeks after its presentation. Even genuine dyed in the wool LNP voters (41% of them thought it unfair) were taken with its broken promises and its dishonesty. Its ideological assault on the poor, young folk, pensioners, education and the sick in favor of the rich and privileged alienated people.
If ever a budget characterised a government’s values and philosophical intent it was this one. It’s called serfdom. A master servant philosophy of another time. All in the face of growing world inequality that learned social commentators and researchers believe together with climate change will be the two greatest problems facing the world.
The Government has sought to justify its actions by insisting that the budget is in crisis. That they have inherited a Labor debt and deficit disaster beyond the electorate’s comprehension. Whilst everyone acknowledges the need for fiscal responsibility commentators and economists have dismissed the notion of a pending disaster as scare tactics.
Abbott came to power on the back of an orchestrated media campaign by the Murdoch press, his own negativity and Labor’s leadership dysfunction. Not because the Conservatives were a new shining example of fresh democracy with policies to match. The fact is that surveys suggested that people were comfortable with Labor policies just not the leadership.
Abbott viewed if differently opting for no policies other than his unpopular PPL scheme. He saw an opportunity to paint the political landscape in pessimistic depressive terms. Blaming everything on everybody else and pretending only he had the answers. He lied by omission during the election campaign preferring to dump his IPA inspired policies on an unsuspecting electorate when the electorate had settled. He thought they would be compliant. He was wrong.
And so we are approaching the first anniversary of a government that seems to be putting its foot in the political mire on a daily basis. It is a government that has failed to spell out a narrative for Australia’s future other that saying it will be built on coal. We have a Prime Minister for undoing rather than doing. A person who has failed to represent us internationally. One who imbues on the Australian political scene a dour negativity when what we need is inspiration.
It raises this question.
Has Australia ever elected a Prime Minister so ignorant of technology, the environment and science? So oblivious of the needs of women and gay people. So out of touch with a modern pluralist society. And such a perverted liar?
They are a Government on the nose, contemptuous of any view other than their own. Simply playing politics as if it were some sort of plaything dedicated to improving the lot of big business and the privileged. Oblivious to the common good. It’s easy to understand why so many Australians have disengaged from politics.
In short they are a government bogged down trying to justify an ultra-right wing political ideology to an electorate whose only desire is for government for the common good.