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The Liberal Party: It’s A Broad Church But It May Get Narrower!

I did think of running a quiz: “Which Scottie said it: PM guy or Star Trek dude?” However, the only quote from the Star Trek dude that I could find was: “She’s fully automated, a chimpanzee and 2 trainees can run her” and that clearly isn’t about the Liberal Party… although it could’ve argued that over the past five years, they have tried to discover if, in fact, a chimpanzee and two trainees could run it.

But you do have to think that the government has boldly gone where no government has gone before when you have a news article that begins:

Scott Morrison insists his frontbench is a “very strong and stable team”, despite five ministers announcing their retirement in the past month.

Yes, I can’t help but think that the Liberals are aiming their strategy at those who are easily fooled. H. L. Menken is meant to have said, “Nobody ever went broke underestimating the intelligence of the American public”! He may be right, but there’s a difference between making money out of gullible people and actually convincing a majority of people to trust you. And let’s be real here, the forty something percent of people who still intend to vote for the Coalition fall into four categories:

  1. Wealthy people who only care about themselves.
  2. Those who are opposed to action on climate change because scientists are experts and you can’t trust experts which is also why they never listen to doctor’s advice and the fact that they’re still alive proves they don’t need to give up smoking and/or lose weight.
  3. Those who are already gullible enough to believe that the Coalition has fixed the Budget (after the election, we’ll have a surplus, trust us) in spite of net debt doubling since they took office.
  4. Those who are related to a Federal Coalition MP, those who work for one, or those who are carrying their illegitimate child. In some cases, a combination of two of the three, though not the first and last as far as I’m aware.

Now, I was quite staggered to read SmoGo’s attack on Bill Shorten for having the temerity to presume he’d win the election. Shorten had suggested that some of the recent Liberal appointments to diplomatic posts and other plum jobs would be looked at under a Labor government. This is outrageous and not just because it was totally unlike when the Liberals cancelled Steve Bracks consul-general appointment. This is an example of Labor presuming that they’d be the government.

They shouldn’t be making plans for government because, well, it’s taking the electorate for granted. We’d never take the electorate for granted, Scottie seems to be implying.

Except he then goes on to tell us:

“I am still waiting to know, who is going to be their home affairs minister, who is going to be the Labor minister, if they are elected, who is responsible, for keeping our borders strong? Who is going to be the defence minister, because apparently Richard Marles might be the home affairs minister.

“In my team, you know who the defence minister is. You know who the foreign minister is, you know who the treasurer is, you know who the deputy prime minister is. It is a very clear and stable team. In Labor we don’t know who is running in these important positions and it is about time Bill Shorten ended the speculation around this. Tell us who is going to keep the borders secure Bill, because at the moment, you don’t seem to know and the Australian people don’t know.”

Apparently not only should Labor be telling us who the ministers will be, which does seem a little bit like taking their election for granted, but Scott is making a virtue of the fact that he can tell us who the home affairs minister will be (No, not Barnaby, different sort of home affairs). Yes, it does seem that Scott is presuming that all his ministers will be re-elected. That might sound like taking the electorate for granted too, but I’m sure he only meant exactly what he said which was “you know who the defence minister is”. It’s Chrissy Pyne. Of course, he won’t be there after the election, but you know who’ll take his place. And you know who the foreign minister is. Come on, I know it’s not Julie any more, but you know! They’ve been there since the leadership change. And we all know the Immigration Minister from all those times he hasn’t done an interview. You know, David Coal-man. Mm, I can see why he didn’t get the energy portfolio.

Now I know that making predictions is difficult and that a week is a long time in politics and anything might happen, but in spite of all of that, I’m going to tell you one important thing about myself. I can’t sing. It’s true. When I try to sing it’s woeful. I simply mention this because while nothing is certain, I can predict with a fair degree of accuracy that me being offered a recording contract for my vocals is slightly more likely than Morrison running a convincing election campaign. (Autocorrect suggested “conniving” because I accidentally hit the “n” twice… At least, I think that was the reason!)

Train wreck may be the wrong metaphor here because that suggests a train leaving the rails and this more like a ship being tossed from side to side in a storm, while the crew occasionally change the person steering completely ignoring the fact that the rudder broke off sometime in between the second and third change of captain.

So what happens if the Liberals lose badly? Will they reflect and decide that they may need to actually change their ways? Or will the broad church split down the middle? Will some say that if we leave the ideological dinosaurs and form a new party with those who are like-minded independents, we’d actually have more chance of being elected than if we continue to argue not only that night was day, but that there’s quite a case for having more night time and we really don’t need to do anything differently.

We’ll see. There’s still a Budget to get through and ANZAC day, where the Liberals will surely find some way of suggesting that Labor are politicising a sacred day. And, of course, there’s the terrorist attack that they’ll foil. Or the boat arrival. And the decision to send our troops somewhere. That last one may be hard, because we usually follow the US and Trump seems a hard man to follow because he keeps agreeing with all the leaders when they say that they haven’t done anything wrong… Perhaps we could send the army into remote indigenous communities again…

No, I can’t see Scottie managing to save this one, but anything is possible. Mm, maybe I’d better start working out which songs I’m going put on my album!

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15 comments

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  1. Jack Cade

    Many people vote for the Liberal Party simply because they believe it makes them look better than their Labor-voting neighbours. It’s a ‘keeping up with the Joneses’ attitude, pretending to actually BE the Joneses. ‘I am better than you because I vote Liberal. I am therefore middle class, and they are working class.’
    It has always been my view that anybody who works for an organisation that can sack them is, ipso facto, ‘working class’ whether or not their income suggests otherwise.

  2. New England Cocky

    The only certain thing about Liarbral policies is that those policies will be self-serving.

  3. whatever

    The SMH is publishing lists of the demographic statistics of electorates.
    ‘Average Income’ is first on the list, as you might expect, but the second most important consideration is ‘People over 60 years of age’.
    This figure is uniformly 20% or over, it will soon figure as 25%. They are an important voting bloc because almost 100% of them actually go out and vote, or lodge pre-poll votes.
    Scotty and his crew are focused entirely on the ‘Midsomer Murders’ population.

  4. Peter F

    Ross, one thing you can predict with some certainty is that the Coalition WILL lose BADLY.

  5. Michael Taylor

    Peter, I prefer to think that they’ll lose GOODLY. 😉

  6. RomeoCharlie29

    I suspect the “over 60’s” figures might be a bit surprising given the generally accepted wisdom that the elderly are conservative voters. I am well over 60 and the last (and first) time I voted Liberal was in 1966. Of course one mixes with those of like mind so in a political sense it’s probably no surprise that in a particular group of eight who meet regularly, only one or maybe two will hint at voting Liberal. Extrapolated to the broader over 60’s population however that seems to indicate 15 to 20% liberal support. Please don’t bother to critique my stats or methodology which I recognise is dodgy in the extreme. I live in hope.

  7. Peter F

    Michael, I don’t think they have goodness as part of their makup but if you want to see BAD just wait.

  8. pierre wilkinson

    The Coalition are a united team and will continue to be so until after the election then it will be every man for themselves, blame everyone else and continue to represent the few faithful who voted them back in… until their posting to some sinecure in business as a reward for joining whichever party offers them a chance of political survival.
    Meanwhile prepare for an avalanche of tax payer paid for advertising of how good the government is and what they believe Labor would do to the economy, border safety, jobs and growth and taxes: none of it remotely close to the truth, but hey…. that’s retail politics.

    sigh<

  9. margcal

    Politicising ANZAC Day …. every year Josh sends out a very Josh, very Liberal branded ‘info’ sheet about ANZAC Day. It’s just another “Liberal” publicity event.

    Over 60s … mixing with like-minded people – that might describe our friends but the only like-minded thing about my two walking groups is the belief that, aged 60 to 91, we need to keep doing those 5km twice a week or we’ll be in big trouble.
    Some of the women (only one man) are clearly affluent, the right schools, wives of judges and doctors, etc. The proportion who think we need to act on climate change, behave decently to refugees, pensioners, the unemployed, etc, etc puts lie to those who consistently write off “the oldies” as rusted on conservative Liberal voters. They’ve even been known to swear!

  10. Kampbell

    I live in a very conservative regional town, the local paper is consistantly towing the Coalition line. Bill Shorten is portrayed as a buck toothed idiot accompanied by a union thug in all the cartoons. It is the only paper in town apart from the Courier Mail.
    If I read only these publications I would have no idea what a mob of brazen chancers are running our country.
    Thanks you to AIM, keep up the good work.

  11. DrakeN

    Does anyone have a digital file of the Liberal logo where the word ‘Liberal’ is replaced by the word ‘Liars’?

    I saw some examples of it last election, but failed to keep a copy.

  12. Kronomex

    Kampbell,

    Sounds like you live in Kingaroy.

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