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Who do you trust?

As they wander round in their high-vis vests, shearing sheep, drinking beer, kicking footballs, and joining in the factory production line, Coalition politicians keep asking us “who do you trust” as part of their determined attempt to cast Bill Shorten as untrustworthy.

As a measure of their judgement, it’s perhaps more informative to ask who do they trust.

Tony Abbott and John Howard have both expressed their admiration for convicted pedophile George Pell. Abbott described him as “a fine man…one of the greatest churchmen that Australia has seen”, a personal mentor.

He also described James Ashby as “a decent man” for whom he “had a lot of sympathy”.

Abbott described Kathy Jackson, a woman who systematically robbed the Health Services Union of hundreds of thousands of dollars to fund her lavish lifestyle, as ‘brave’ and ‘decent’, while Christopher Pyne called her a ‘revolutionary’, a ‘lion of the union movement’.

One of Abbott’s first acts was to appoint Maurice Newman as head of his Business Advisory Council. This is the man who wrote that the world was ill-prepared for a period of global cooling and that the United Nations was using debunked climate science to impose a new world order under its own control.

Tony has also described Rupert Murdoch as a “hometown hero”, comparing him to John Monash and Howard Florey.

In this bizarro world, Gina Rinehart advises on tax policy, Twiggy Forest on Indigenous disadvantage, and Noel Pearson on education. The creche for aspiring Liberal politicians, aka the IPA, regularly dictate what is to be done to make their members wealthier – the only goal worth aspiring to.

Treasury advice is ignored in favour of “independent” modelling from the Minerals Council and the Property Council.

Government departments are regularly bypassed as compliant consultants produce reports supporting Coalition policy.

Scientific bodies and climate scientists are ignored in favour of tame (or should that be lame) economists who always seem to have links to the fossil fuel industry.

If you genuinely wanted to save the Great Barrier Reef, would you give half a billion dollars to universities and the CSIRO for research and action plans or would you give it to a few business middlemen to dole out to private companies who they may or may not have connections with?

And then there are the Ministers.

Trusting mining lawyer Melissa Price with the stewardship of the environment is a cruel joke. She should be called the Minister for Approvals. She is as trustworthy as Barnaby Joyce was as Minister for Water or Tony Abbott as Minister for Women or Michaelia Cash as Minister for Attacking Unions or Malcolm Turnbull as Minister for Destroying the NBN or Mitch Fifield as Minister for Foxtel.

For some unknown reason, and despite the horror expressed by the majority of their party and the nation at large at the notion of Peter Dutton becoming PM, he is entrusted with the most power of anyone in the country – the power to singlehandedly decide the fate of people’s lives. Every evaluation of his handling of every department he has ever overseen has been damning, but on he sails as a trusted lieutenant.

How many MPs trust tax havens to increase, and hide, their wealth? As Minister Taylor would say, “Fantastic. Great move. Well done Angus”.

Look at the candidates they have trusted to represent the Coalition in the upcoming election – racism, homophobia, Islamophobia, sexism, misogyny, white supremacy, religious fundamentalism – these appear to be the traits of those who aspire to join the conservative side nowadays.

If you ask the electorate who they trust, I doubt the answer would ever be a politician.

But if politicians are the only choice, then it certainly isn’t your mob Scott.

If you care about other people, that’s now a very dangerous idea. If you care about other people, you might try to organize to undermine power and authority. That’s not going to happen if you care only about yourself. Maybe you can become rich, but you don’t care whether other people’s kids can go to school, or can afford food to eat, or things like that. In the United States, that’s called “libertarian” for some wild reason. I mean, it’s actually highly authoritarian, but that doctrine is extremely important for power systems as a way of atomizing and undermining the public.”

Noam Chomsky “Business Elites Are Waging a Brutal Class War in America”.

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  1. New England Cocky

    It doesn’t matter who you vote for, a politician always gets elected.

    So our priority must become ELECTING POLITICIANS WHO DO NOT SELL OUT AUSTRALIAN VOTERS for 19th century political ideologies.

    Bring on the 2019 election so that we may dispatch this RAbbott Turdball Morriscum Lazy Nasty People misgovernment to the WPB of Australian political history.


  2. whatever

    The LNP can only communicate in terms of these 1950’s door to door salesman techniques and anti-communist libel against anyone who opposes them.

  3. Aortic

    Great article again Kaye, thank you. If the Coalition candidates continue to keep falling by the wayside the way they are at present, with any luck, combined with those who are not standing for reelection there won’t be enough to crowd a phone box far less form a government. Perish the thought, but if the LNP get in again, we are going to take lessons in the language, and move to New Zealand. The yawning difference between the grace and dignity of their PM, compared to the negative sniping and constant small mindedness of ours is starkly on contrast. The contents of your article should be plastered all over the front pages of our MSM but I am not holding my breath.

  4. David Bruce

    As long as we have politicians and political parties in Australia ignoring the Commonwealth of Australia constitution, there can be no basis for trust.

    All political parties, MPs and Senators have by their silence and ommisions to take lawful action to reinstate the peoples Parliaments, have made themselves “Parties to the offences” and all judges and high level public officers and the media are complicit, acting under “false pretences” and “compounding crimes” (misprison).
    Senator Culleton and the team have launched a challenge in the Privy Council in London in relation to many of these crimes.

  5. DrakeN

    Aortic@ 11:08

    As the sign being held by that girl in the previous Schoolkids Strike proclaimed:

    “I have seen better Cabinets in IKEA.”

  6. Kaye Lee

    What rot David.

    In 1986 the Australia Act was introduced in all of the States, the Federal Parliament and in UK Parliament. The Australian States and the Commonwealth confirmed their sovereign, independent status from Britain. All Privy Council appeals ended from Australian courts other than the High Court, where it remains theoretically possible for some appeals to be taken under Section 74 of the Constitution. However, in order for this to happen the High Court would need to provide a certificate.

    The High Court in Culleton’s case was sitting as the Court of Disputed Returns and certificates are theoretically possible for section 74 inter se cases. This means it has to be a case that involves a dispute between the federal Government and one or more of the States.

    Rod Culleton being disqualified from the Senate was not an inter se matter. On top of the legislation created in 1968, 1975 and 1986, plus a pledge from the High Court that they will not write certificates for Privy Council appeals, there isn’t an option for appeal to the Privy Council, because the Court was sitting as the Court of Disputed Return.

    The constitution states that “Until the Parliament otherwise provides, any question respecting the qualification of a senator or of a member of the House of Representatives, or respecting a vacancy in either House of the Parliament, and any question of a disputed election to either House, shall be determined by the House in which the question arises.”

    And yes….I realise your mission in life is to throw dead cats on the table.

  7. Kaye Lee

    Adani’s arrogance knows no bounds. The Queensland government advised them their management plan for the black-throated finch was not adequate. They have also told them that they must find the source of naural springs and more adequately assess the impact on them of their water extraction. Adani issued the following statement in response:

    “After more than 18 months and seven revisions, the Queensland Labor Government still cannot commit to a date to finalise Adani Mining’s two outstanding environmental management plans.

    Adani Mining is calling on the Premier to take charge and show leadership, requesting the Queensland Labor Government commit once and for all to a date to finalise the plans.

    CEO for Adani Mining Lucas Dow said that off the back of the State again delaying the approvals process by requesting an eighth round of new revisions, which he believes goes well beyond what is required to meet Adani’s environmental requirements, the Department still refused to provide any firm dates to finalise the Black-Throated Finch Management Plan or the Groundwater Dependent Ecosystem Management Plans.

    “After receiving this advice from the Queensland Environment Department late yesterday, we are now feverishly working through their new requests,” Mr Dow said.

    “Although we believe the current version of the Black-Throated Finch Management Plan already meets our project conditions, we are not going to be pig-headed about it and we will review the feedback from the Queensland Department and respond accordingly.

    “However, Department officials have refused to commit to a timeframe to finalise the plan, even if we were to accept the State’s new round of requests in full.

    “At what point does the Environment Minister get held to account for the performance of her own Department and its behaviour?

    “Furthermore, if the Department can’t provide us an answer, can the Environment Minister, Deputy Premier or Premier provide us a date instead so we can get on with delivering thousands of jobs for regional Queenslanders?”

    Could I suggest that the approval will come when and if you actually come up with a real management plan rather than the crap you have so far delivered? In the mean time, who the hell do you think you are/

  8. Kaye Lee

    Former prime minister Tony Abbott says that in Australia “we sub-contract too much out to experts already”, and that we should not “save our planet at the expense of our neighbour”

    “Do we want experts to tell us what kind of cars to drive?” he asked

    “Do we want experts to tell us how big our cattle herds should be?”

    The audience responded with chants of “Yes! Yes!”.

    Sky News political editor David Speers, who moderated the debate, asked Mr Abbott “how much difference can a backbencher make?” within a government.

    “Clearly too much!” shouted one crowd member.

    “I have certainly found I am reasonably persuasive over the years,” Mr Abbott said to some groans, and some laughter.

    Please make him stop!

  9. New Bruce

    A few thoughts.
    Can Australia, or We the Voter, actually trust ANY of them?
    Yes. In the fist dealers “debate” it has generally been accepted that billy shortarse got the better of scooter moronscum by about a lap and a half, but he still avoided answering a couple of straight up questions about costings.
    There is nothing to be gained by some minor adjustment of the adani mine at carmichael, or even stopping it completely, if the soon to be labor government then springs a fracked NT/QLD on us all. In fact that would be even worse,and no-one seems to be going near either scenario. Why is this???
    Ms credlin could hardly be called an expert,yet the mad monk was ready and more than willing to take her “advice” on anything that might get him the keys to the Lodge, regardless of who’s toes were removed, what bullshit was thrown at the fan, or what it ultimately cost Australia.He should remember that way back, shrouded in the mists of history and time, Rule 303 was utilised to great effect in stopping particular opposition strategies. It (sometimes) resulted in a few of it’s proponents being executed. Just because, in general, “termination” is no longer a viable means of shutting someone up doesn’t mean that given half a chance some of us might just give it a go.
    A final thought, or open question really.
    How much money is enough? 5 Mil? 10 Mil? 20?
    I’ll use ex pm turdball as an example. He turns 65 this year. His 200 million in the caymans has to last him and Lucy another 30 years. If he turns it all into a big pile of $50 notes, it has to be spent at the rate of $761.04 per HOUR if he and she are to have nothing left by the time he turns 95. Then there’s my old friend gina with 14+ bazillions. She needs to spend $53,272.45 p/hr.
    Or do I just think too small ?

  10. Andreas Bimba

    Sharing sheep as well, those LNP bastards just push the boundaries of decency all the time. Disgusting.

  11. totaram

    ” Former prime minister Tony Abbott says that in Australia “we sub-contract too much out to experts already”, and that we should not “save our planet at the expense of our neighbour”

    What does this even mean? Is he suggesting our neighbour lives on a different planet? That might really be the case, except that this happens entirely in Tony Abbott’s confused and deluded mind.

  12. Aortic

    And Michelle Landry claims that Barnaby Joyce could return as Nats leader in a party room shake up. Sweet tap dancing Jesus, if that’s not enough to convince people not to vote for the conservative side of politics, might move to the different planet totaram refers to on his Tony Nullius summation.

  13. Terence Mills

    When it comes to trust, just ask the The Syrian refugee family who accepted Scott Morrison and Peter Dutton’s offer to be resettled in Cambodia. Dutton was desperate to get families to accept the very expensive Cambodian alternative after the Australian government had handed over some fifty million dollars to the corrupt Cambodian government.

    Mr Zalghani accepted the “Cambodian establishment package” which was quite attractive as it included among other things that “school-aged children will be enrolled in local private schools in Phnom Penh … for up to four years after arrival”. Mr Zalghani has four children between ten and sixteen but after they arrived in Cambodia in December 2018 Dutton’s department reneged on the deal. The promise to provide health insurance to the family for “up to five years” has also been reneged on.

    The International Organisation for Migration (IOM), was given $15.5 million by Australia to provide services to the refugees and, despite a written agreement , IOM have stated that this may have been, a “miscommunication” by Australia even though the written agreement is quite clear , see here :

    And these politicians are saying who do you trust and are asking for your vote and pleading to be returned to office for another three years !

    Unfortunately this act of political treachery and betrayal will not get mainstream media coverage and is unlikely to be raised with Morrison or Dutton by the compliant media following these politicians. It is only through our ABC – which they want to destroy – and groups like AIMN that these atrocities can get an airing.

    Have a look at the agreement which should be a legally binding document and see what you think ………..!

  14. totaram

    New Bruce: I think Bill Shorten gave the right answer about “costings” of his climate change policy. What is the “cost” of Morrison’s policy of “do nothing”? He has no answer but no one asks him that question, because all the so-called “journalists” have been told by their paymasters what is allowed and what is not. Or, he has a “budget” prepared by treasury, where he has installed his own honchos and the PBO cannot possibly “cost” the Labor policy because it has no detail, which is yet to be worked out with the industry.

    As for “subcontracting to experts”, I’m now reminded that I did make that mistake. When my son was diagnosed with a brain tumour the size of an egg, I sub-contracted to a so-called expert brain surgeon, who carried out a 14 hour surgery and removed the tumour. What a waste. It actually cost us nothing because of medicare, but that is just government handouts isn’t it? My son should have taken responsibility for his lifestyle choice to have a tumour and paid for the operation. Or, we could have taken Tony’s advice and even done it ourselves! No need for all that fancy equipment costing millions. Just some kind of rosary and prayer might have done the trick. Or even a hole-saw and a penknife!

    How anyone can even think of listening to a “debate” with this proven liar and cheat, or voting for these complete charlatans beggars belief.

  15. wam

    Who do you trust is dependent on whose opinion you read in the paper, share on facebook, hear on the radio or see on TV

    Well I am glad labor took my advice to put up a great candidate against brandt. So much for the labor candidate selection process,

    Suppose I would be ineligible because of my hate speech suggesting folau and ablett were unchristian in telling their god who to send to hell.

  16. andy56

    well at the moment, the liberals are in charge and i dont trust them at all, zero, 0, non at all. So to swing my bat, i have already voted against the rabble right. They have had their chance and blew it big time. When you have two choices A or B, Eliminate the incumbents if they have failed. That sets the standard you accept.

  17. Andreas Bimba

    What matters is your core values and whether you uphold them.

    The Liberals and Nationals without exception have a severe deficit of worthy core values – it’s just about no 1, their families and friends and their backers and associates. All on a dying planet by the way. Even the small L’s who often espouse some worthy goals and policies, facilitate the neoliberal defrauding of the many, the record and increasing wealth of the 1%, the ongoing entrenchment of the two tier society and their highly corrupt form of crony capitalism that is world beating – in it’s corruption and nepotism.

    Bill Shorten’s ALP is definitely more competent and compassionate than the LNP disaster and I still hope they win in a landslide in the 18 May 2019 federal election. The fact that the so called opinion polls still show that the two party preferred vote is still so close and possibly falling is incredible and an indication that something is seriously wrong with the Australian mainstream mass media, which we all knew anyway. The right wing of our religious world are also particularly effective propagandists and ‘social engineers’ for the Australian kleptocracy. The talk is relentlessly of maintaining our traditional values and their moral codes and it is easy for them to portray the Greens and other socially liberal people as evil and a threat to their core beliefs.

    Although I still want a landslide Labor victory my preferred outcome would include a significantly increased vote for the Greens and for other credible independents and micro-parties as I firmly believe we must work to ultimately break the stranglehold that the duopoly has over Australian politics.

    The recent major betrayal by Bill Shorten’s ALP of all of us, by announcing during the current election campaign their crazy policy to massively facilitate the highly environmentally destructive coal seam fracked gas industry in Queensland and the Northern Territory by providing $1.5 billion of government money for interconnecting pipeline infrastructure, is yet another example of the betrayal of core values, a betrayal of scientific evidence and a willingness to do deals to gain voting blocs or money. These proposed CSG developments would release huge quantities of methane into the atmosphere, destroy aquifers and fragile ecosystems. The total GHG emissions would even dwarf that from the exploitation of the Galilee basin coal reserves, including the combustion of the coal by end users.

    Bill Shorten by compromising your values in this way, you have sown the seeds of your own demise and that of your party that could and should be so much better than it is currently and that it has been during the 40 neoliberal era. This party likes to blame the Greens for their electoral failures when it must be obvious to everyone by now, that the rot is within.

  18. Blink

    Always pretty much trusted the greens.

  19. RomeoCharlie29

    Jeez Kaye Lee, don’t hold back. A really excellent article which, as somebody said, should be published much more widely. Your analysis of the untrustworthiness of the current ruling rabble was spot on and your slap down of the dead cat theorist was masterly.I would like to see this article on the front page of every Murdoch rag in the country, mostly as an example to their own journalists of what real commentary looks like. As a Territorian I am, like Andreas, appalled at Shorten’s support for fracking in the NT. I am aware his own Senate candidate, the sitting Senator, an Indigenous woman, is less than happy with that position given there is a huge Aboriginal backlash against the Labor NT government over its approval for fracking. I believe Labor could lose both of its seats because of this decision, coupled with the general unpopularity of the NT government.

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