The jury’s in…
Well, it would be because there is no jury. What I’m trying to say is that the decision has been made by the people who matter which – as I am sure you know is the Federal Coalition. Lidia Thorpe has failed to declare a conflict of interest.
Peter Dutton has led the charge, announcing that Senator Thorpe must leave Parliament because ‘you can’t receive those briefings during the day and then hang out, you know, in nice circumstances of a night-time with a bikie.”
Now some Victorians may wonder why Mr Dutton was silent about the Victorian Liberal leader sharing lunch with someone who has alleged links to organised crime, but to be fair, Mr “Family” Guy assures that he had no idea who was at the lunch and if he’d known he’d have made sure it was a lot more discreet.
Anyway, there’s no suggestion that Senator Thorpe actually leaked any information to Dean Martin who – for the benefit of older readers – is not the same Dean Martin who used to be Jerry Lewis sidekick in movies until they went their separate ways. However, when one is in certain positions, there should be no potential conflict of interest that isn’t declared. Once unit’s declared people can make up their own minds. For example, if I were a minister and I’d happened to get one of my staffers pregnant, it’s fine to get her a promotion as long as I say something along the lines of: “She and I have been having quite a good time of it on the office desk but I think it’d be good if she moved somewhere else so I could actually get some work done.”
Senator Thorpe’s problem wasn’t that she had a brief relationship with a bikie; it was the fact that she didn’t declare it while she was serving on committees that were hearing sensitive information.
Of course, some of you are wondering how the Liberals can be so critical of the senator’s behaviour when they’ve been so firm on insisting that the proposed Integrity Commission shouldn’t be allowed to trash people’s reputations by holding public hearings. I believe the term, “Kangaroo Court” has been used on a number of occasions, demonstrating a certain lack of understanding of what the term actually means.
For the benefit of everyone, here is a definition from one online dictionary: an unofficial court held by a group of people in order to try someone regarded, especially without good evidence, as guilty of a crime or misdemeanour.
It would seem strange to call a legally constituted body which has its powers strictly defined and which cannot actually do more than recommend possible further action, a kangaroo court, but the Liberals have been known to do some very strange things.
Take Gladys Berijiklian, who suddenly resigned, even though “she hadn’t done anything wrong” apart from fall for a boundless cad who seduced her into diverting money in his electorate. This was rather strange behaviour, but perhaps she felt she was slipping as the kangaroo lawyer who questioned her had to constantly remind her of things that she’d forgotten to do, such as answer the question he just asked. With her faculties slipping, she may have felt it time to go while she was still on top.
It’s not like she did anything like Lidia Thorpe because her partner wasn’t a bikie. He just drove tractors very badly, often running over iPads and the like.
And then there was that time that they paid $30 million for land that was only valued at $3 million. There was no conflict of interest there.
Neither was there a conflict of interest when Dyson Heydon declared that he was unbiased and the fact that he was going to speak at a Liberal fundraiser didn’t make him ineligible to head the Royal Commission Into Embarrassing Labor And The Unions.
And when Scotty the Virtuous Globalist had his QAnon mate staying at Kirribilli House, well that was no problem because we all knew about it… eventually. And just because your best mate is head of QAnon Australia, well, you’re not responsible for anything that your mates do or say. Or as someone said about Peter Dutton, “Don’t judge him by what he’s said and done!”
You see, the Liberals believe in the individual, while Labor believes in the collective. This is why what anything a Liberal does is just an isolated thing, while anything Labor does is part of the whole left. And we can include the Greens in that because, even though the relationship between Labor and the Greens is more toxic than the one between Turnbull and Morrison, they’re apparently a “coalition”…
No, whatever criticism you may want to make about the Liberal Party, you certainly can’t accuse them of failing to adopt a consistent stand on things.
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