CultureWatch

Bill Muehlenberg's commentary on issues of the day...

Australia Votes 2016

Jul 4, 2016

I started writing this piece before the counting began on Saturday’s federal election. Now, a few days later, it still may be premature to complete it, but something has to be said, even if it is still early days yet as to finally learning the actual outcome.

It may not be just a matter of days but even weeks before we learn who wins this election. And the longer things drag on, the worse it is looking for the Coalition. It may be a hung parliament at best, but a Labor win is still possible.

A minority government seems to be on the cards, with another unwieldy Senate. And the short answer to all this chaos and lack of a clear winner and a stable government is of course Malcolm Turnbull. His stabbing in the back of sitting leader Tony Abbott has come back to bite him – big time, as heaps of us had predicted.

turnbull shortenHad he and his traitorous supporters not dumped Abbott, I believe a returned Coalition government would now be the outcome, even with perhaps a reduced majority. But now we are in limbo land once again, and Turnbull must take full responsibility for this.

I had stated various times before the July 2 election that a good outcome would be something like this: the Coalition gets back in, Turncoat Turnbull loses his seat, and a new genuine conservative leader and PM is eventually brought in. Well, Wentworth of course has always been a safe Liberal seat, so regrettably Turnbull has retained it.

But he still may lose his position as PM because of the election, and his position as Liberal leader by another party revolt. The very thing we hated and mocked in Labor is now becoming a reality with the Libs. All because of the ego and idiocy of the long-time leftist Turnbull.

So here we go again: many more months and maybe years of political instability, leadership challenges and a hostile Senate which will stymie most bits of legislative change. Just what Australia needs – and all because of Turnbull. As one wit put it: “The election summed up: minority government in the Reps and the Bar Scene from Star Wars in the Senate.”

If the Coalition just manages to scrape back in, the heat will still be on Shorten. An Albanese challenge has already been mooted, and Shorten should have romped this one in. And other fallout is still likely: the hyper leftist running Victoria, Dan Andrews, may also be given the flick, since his idiotic moves just prior to the election, including the CFA debacle, cost Labor dearly there.

So he may soon be history, which would be a bit of good news out of this fiasco of an election. The few other bits of good news include the fact that the so-called conservative independents who last time sided with Labor have lost in their attempts to get back in. So long and good riddance Rob Oakeshott and Tony Windsor.

And in my eyes, more good news is this: many of those who plotted against Abbott have now lost their seats! Good. As one news report puts it:

The Coalition has “paid the price” in western Sydney and regional Queensland for dumping Tony Abbott in favour of Malcolm Turnbull, while the current Prime Minister’s chief leadership plotters have felt the force of voter revenge. The 4.2 per cent swing against Mr Turnbull in his home state of NSW was stronger than the national average of 3.7 per cent, as “Tony’s Tradies” turned against the man who ousted Mr Abbott as prime minister.
Seven Liberal MPs lost their seats and former NSW ALP state secretary, senator Sam Dastyari, said the Coalition had “paid the price” for underestimating how “loved and incredibly popular” Mr Abbott was in west and southwest Sydney. “His conservative social values, his personality traits: those same characteristics that were ridiculed and mocked by elements of the Sydney establishment elite were exactly the qualities that endeared him to many people in west and southwest Sydney.”

Thus some of the major plotters against Abbott such as Peter Hendy, Wyatt Roy and Luke Simpkins are now history. Hmm, what goes around comes around. While we still do not know how all this will turn out, we already have desperate leaders calling the independents and those from smaller parties, hoping to get their support.

Both Turnbull and Shorten need their help to form any kind of half-way stable government. Except for Katter, it may be anyone’s guess how the others align themselves. With the pro-abortion and pro-homosexual marriage Xenophon, we cannot expect any real help from his new team.

But the real story here, as already suggested, is simply this: Abbott should never have been knifed by Turnbull. Sure, we can talk about Labor lies on Medicare, etc, but the real villain here is Turnbull. He claimed that this act of treachery would improve Coalition chances at the next poll. He has been proven to be dead wrong.

The twenty-plus seat lead from the last election has been obliterated, and we still face the prospect of a Labor government getting into power. Let me just finish with some conservative voices on the state of play thus far. Commentator Andrew Bolt was absolutely livid on Sky news Saturday night (as he should well have been), tearing into Turnbull. As he later wrote:

Malcolm, you assassinated a Liberal Prime Minister, Tony Abbott, who’d won an election by a huge margin. You promised to do even better than him. You then treated the Liberal base like dirt, smashing it with a huge super tax, refusing to speak to conservative journalists, repeatedly humiliating Abbott.
You referred to the colonial settlement of Australia as an “invasion” and even held an end-of-Ramadan meal with known Muslim bigots. You called an early double dissolution election on the excuse of needing new laws to tackle rogue unions with a building and construction commission, but with the true aim of getting rid of crossbench oppositionists in the Senate. You went to the election with basically only one policy to sell – a pathetic 10-year promise to cut company tax. And now look. Almost everything turned to ruin.

Larry Pickering put it this way:

Abbott must have slept last night with a wry smile on his face. He had killed off the Rudd/Gillard nightmare and despite the Senate he had stopped the boats and destroyed Labor’s damaging mining and carbon taxes. Abbott was on the way to a comfortable 2016 win. Turnbull has taken all of Abbott’s record 2013 landslide and trashed it… nothing left, good people gone forever, just to satisfy Turnbull’s unhealthy, lustful, egocentric craving for The Lodge… a craving he has nursed for decades.

Steve Kates over at Catallaxy put it this way:

Do those political morons who led the coup really believe that the result we have actually had is better than the one we would have had if Tony had still been leader? And listening to the campaign speech delivered six hours after the polls had closed made me appreciate just what a guilty mind Malcolm obviously now has. Other than the brute fact of his steel-plated ego protector, he would have fallen on his sword tonight, instead of telling us what a genius he’d been in destroying a party structure and policy position that had been carefully crafted over those many years of opposition and then in the first year and a half of government. He has also created a Senate eminently workable for a Labor Government but one in which the Coalition will be hard pressed to get a single issue of substance legislated.

Rita Panahi was equally scathing:

How do you a turn a record primary vote and massive majority into a possible hung parliament and demoralising loss? You elect Malcolm Turnbull as your leader. Duplicitous, arrogant and out of touch, the Prime Minister ran a terrible campaign that appalled conservatives, underwhelmed the Centre and amused the Left.
Put simply, Turnbull is a dud; there has never been a politician whose abilities have been more over-estimated, nor a man who better personifies style over substance. How much longer will conservatives allow a perfidious impostor to devastate the party of Menzies and Howard? He not only made Bill Shorten look prime ministerial but also, in a huge error of judgment, refused to attack Labor’s weak points such as border security and the reintroduction of a carbon tax via an ETS. Indeed if it wasn’t for Premier Dan Andrews’s attacks on the CFA in Victoria, Shorten would today be preparing for the Lodge instead of fighting off Anthony Albanese for the Labor leadership.

Today Bolt said this:

Malcolm Turnbull is complaining that Labor’s Mediscare lies cost him the victory he wanted. An ”extraordinary act of dishonesty,” he raged. True, those lies were outrageous and possibly even criminal. But Turnbull essentially lost this election (to the extent he has lost it) before the election campaign even started.
Remember: the Coalition actually went into this election from behind, and that is entirely due to Turnbull’s seven wasted months of waffling and dithering and musing about great big new taxes. Stabbing Abbott didn’t help, either. Those seven months is where the real solutions to this catastrophe lie, and whingeing about Mediscare is just the sound of people refusing to face reality – that Malcolm Turnbull is a disastrous leader.
This humiliation is not the result of a scare in the last fortnight of the campaign. The seeds for this Liberal disaster were sown last year, and the die was cast with the Budget. Now the Liberals – and everyone else – must deal with the consequences.

The solution is to get Turnbull out and Abbott back in. As Terry McCrann wrote:

Malcolm Turnbull has to go. Immediately. If he won’t resign, he has to be sacked by his party, or by the National Party refusing to form a coalition — in government or in opposition — under his leadership. Turnbull’s departure — not just from the Lodge but from parliament — is in the interests of the Coalition and of the country. We simply cannot afford, we simply cannot risk, a government that continues to be led by someone as monumentally inept, in political and policy terms, as Turnbull.
It is irrelevant whether the government manages to scrape back with a razor-thin majority or we are taken back to a 2010 future with a minority government. Even with a (slim) majority government, he would be completely unable to function with the Senate mess that he has single-handedly created.

Or as Bolt puts it:

Tony Abbott must return as leader of the shattered Liberals after Saturday’s election disaster. Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull out, Abbott in — even if journalists still sneer. True, Abbott ideally needs months more to repair the image that a smart-arse media tore to shreds, feeding off his sometimes dumb mistakes. But who else but Abbott could hope to fix what Turnbull has just smashed?
This election result has been a near-total catastrophe for the Liberals, who have been left without a mandate, platform, unity, honour or real power after letting Turnbull hijack their party last year. Turnbull, a man of the ABC Left, then ditched the Liberals’ base, Liberal principles and even the Liberals’ party colours to campaign on virtually nothing but a fantasy tax cut for business.

We still do not know the final count. And we may not know for quite some time, incredibly. But what we do know for sure is Turnbull is a lefty fraud who has damaged not just the conservative brand but has ruined the Liberal party big time. The only hope now for the Libs is to dump Turnbull and get back to its conservative base and principles. Labor-lite just does not cut it.

www.theaustralian.com.au/federal-election-2016/federal-election-2016-liberals-pay-price-for-ousting-abbott/news-story/234bddf87309dd7e2d7ffe1adc4f7e3e
www.heraldsun.com.au/news/opinion/andrew-bolt/malcolm-after-this-election-you-are-now-finished-writes-andrew-bolt/news-story/662213f7451e1bba8af2fd1d61a04a0e
pickeringpost.com/story/-/6181
catallaxyfiles.com/2016/07/03/australias-jonestown-massacre/
www.heraldsun.com.au/news/opinion/rita-panahi/the-fact-is-malcolm-turnbull-just-doesnt-get-that-he-made-the-election-mess/news-story/595aaa58485257574eed5f7f9a246947
blogs.news.com.au/heraldsun/andrewbolt/index.php/heraldsun/comments/no_one_to_blame_but_turnbull_himself/
www.heraldsun.com.au/business/terry-mccrann/inept-malcolm-turnbull-has-to-go-for-the-sake-of-the-coalition-and-the-country/news-story/7279f908238c8c73aaac87e303241a74
www.heraldsun.com.au/news/opinion/andrew-bolt/only-tony-abbott-can-fix-what-malcolm-turnbull-broke-in-the-liberal-party/news-story/52abeac6c66ec81279128860ef244b62

[1967 words]

12 Responses to Australia Votes 2016

  • During this past election campaign, so many people expressed their ignorance of the impact and importance of Christianity in politics. Most made the comment that Christianity and politics don’t mix, erroneously citing the separation of church and state. The separation of church and state merely defines the roles of each sphere but does not define the undergirding values of each sphere.

    There is no such thing as a neutral politician. Every politician comes to parliament with an undergirding worldview, whether that be Christian (believing in the law of the God of the preamble of our Australian constitution), Atheist (believing in self as the arbiter of law), Islam (Sharia law), or another worldview. The church teaches morality, the government legislates morality and the judiciary enforces it. (The word “secular” historically meant non-sectarian, not atheistic. We know this because the first textbooks used in many schools was the Christian Holy Bible.) Since religious instruction has been removed from our schools, the overall crime rate and decay in society has soared to unfathomable heights.

    My standard answer now, to anyone who thinks Christianity has no place in politics or in our modern society is, in the checklist below, which Christian laws or influences would you prefer society be without? Please check the boxes that apply:

    ( ) Thou shalt not steal;

    ( ) Thou shalt not murder;

    ( ) Thou shalt not bear false witness against thy neighbour;

    ( ) Honour thy mother and father;

    ( ) A six day rather than a seven day working week and the entire work ethic;

    ( ) Holidays (from the word holy days);

    ( ) Every charity (Including looking after refugees who will respect rather than undermine our values);

    ( ) Education;

    ( ) The sciences;

    ( ) Private ownership of property and working for a wage;

    ( ) Most of the famous classical music;

    ( ) Much of beautiful art;

    ( ) The exaltation and protection of women and children;

    ( ) Checks and balances in government (executive, legislative and judicial);

    ( ) Sacredness and equality of all human life;

    … And the list goes on.

  • Malcolm’s support for, even promotion of, homosexuality and appeasement of radical Islam has left many wondering whether he has abandoned our Judaeo-Christian heritage. At best he seems to prefer straddling the fence, which can have painful consequences. All cultures are not equally good.
    And when he calls the colonization of Australia an invasion, does he not concede all the good that resulted therefrom?

  • “By justice a king brings stability to a land, but a man who demands “contributions” demolishes it.” Proverbs 29:4

    Higher and higher they raised the taxes – forcing us to ‘contribute’ to their immoral causes. Hmmm.

  • I note that the prominent role of “progressive” cyber lobby group, Get Up in the demise of certain “hard Conservative” Coalition MPs is emerging in today’s media reports. Seems Australian national politics has already developed its own breed of the US PAC phenomenon..

  • Good summation Bill,

    Two points I’ll make.
    (1 Australians are basically selfish. When Scott Morrison tries to control the medical expenditure he is disliked by the public and labelled by Penny Wong as out of touch. We are regrettably living beyond our means. Our debt levels are too high and increasing. Hard decisions must be made for the good of the Country and benefit of our children.

    The Labor Party doesn’t acknowledge this and rarely operates with any fiscal responsibility. Most members have never run their own business, so they are financially and fiscally challenged.

    (2) On the Liberals, several weeks ago I emailed my local Liberal member Paul Fletcher (Bradfield), and stated that the TURNBULL LIBERAL TEAM should be removed on all their handouts and replaced with LIBERAL PARTY. The way it stood I felt was a brilliant method of rubbing salt in the wound of conservative Abbott supporters. I thought it was a dumb and obvious blunder by Liberal HQ!!!.

    No surprises, my advice was ignored. Again at the booth in Lindfield, Sydney on Saturday (and probably Australia wide) the Liberal party supporter was “parrot like” in stating “VOTE for the TURNBULL LIBERAL PARTY” when she gave out the how to vote brochures.

    Amazing to me! Since when has Turnbull owned the Liberal Team or Liberal Party. I voted for Paul Fletcher (Liberal) for House of Reps and voted Nella Hall (CDP) for the Senate despite my misgivings with Turnbull. He is better alternative to Shorten, and for the reasons above LABOR is potentially a disaster for Australia. A Carbon tax is a nonsense when you see the global economic disaster unfolding.

    Noted also that Turnbull’s repeated failure to offer Tony an olive branch by offering a minor position in the cabinet was ominous. It was a foolish decision. Tony Abbott’s willingness to support Turnbull during this election despite his treatment, shows the true class of Tony Abbott. Peta Credlin has already commented on this, bless her. Turnbull cannot lay a finger of blame on Abbott.

    Greg Sheridan (the Australian) also noted in an article about 6 – 8 weeks ago the decision by Turnbull to place “learners” in senior cabinet positions was unwise. Both Hendy and Wyatt did not concentrate on their electorate and serve as they should have. They have rightly been kicked out. They have themselves to blame. Eric Abetz (Tasmania) was also relegated to the back bench by Turnbull, but remains as a Senator. Thanks be to God he is back in. Eric is a wise and good man IMHO.

    These points above highlight the massive ego that Malcolm Turnbull has and exercises without due consideration, wisdom and consultation with senior Liberal colleagues. He has also failed to work as a supportive pillar to Treasurer Morrison. It’s been a shambles compared to Abbott and Hockey co-ordinated team.

    I love this Country. Saturday should been a positive outcome for Australia, instead it was a disaster. We can’t afford a dysfunctional Government especially when we are heading for a global recession soon. Totally agree Bill, Turnbull is largely responsible for this mess. The Turnbull honeymoon didn’t last.

    I could say a lot more BUT I pray we do not end up with a LABOR GOVT and then Gay Marriage will be a reality. Then I will be really upset.

    Regards,
    Phil

  • Thanks again, Bill.

  • @Joseph Stephen Well said Joseph & great article Bill. I was just watching John Macarthur the other day regarding Gods ideas surrounding candidates. Definitely worth watching listening & sharing in these tumultuous times. Part 1 is available here https://youtu.be/uanbHIjavcc

  • However exactly the same turnaround happened on the the other side of politics in 2010 when the big Rudd majority of 2007 evaporated to a hung parliament.
    I think this speaks as much about the Australian population wanting to have their cake and eat it – lots of welfare and no concern for a ballooning deficit. Independents who promise the earth with no financial responsibility to pay for the promises get elected.

  • Hi Bill,
    critical analysis of our nation’s leadership and that of the Prime Minister is something we expect. It would also be fair to interject some balance into this discussion, instead of doing exactly what most of the media and all of the Opposition parties will take great delight in; viz talking about disunity, dysfunction, poor leadership in the Coalition, to totally discredit them. At this point in time, this side of politics provides the only path of sanity e.g. the plebiscite on the re-definition of Marriage. Enough on this point, except to say it is deflecting attention from what has really occurred to change the course of this nation’s history.

    A much more sinister and ominous aspect/development leading to this looming result (which dwarfs the inadequacies of one individual) is the clear violation of Electoral Law – which threatens the very system that elects a new Government. How many thousands of fraudulent text messages were sent to Labor leaning (or other) voters? (if you haven’t heard, thousands and perhaps tens or hundreds, of thousands of people received a message that appeared to come from Medicare, and that it was being privatized). It only takes a very small number e.g. 3, 4 or 5 (or more) people out of 100 to be duped into changing their minds and the result in one seat (let alone all 150 nationwide) is changed. This fraudulent text messaging is a direct violation of the Commonwealth Electoral Act, section 329 ‘Misleading or deceptive publications’. Publish includes publish by radio, television, internet or telephone. The other similar tactics by Labor at the early voting stations and on election day included telling voters “save Medicare vote Labor” and signage saying the same thing. I know because I was at these places (volunteering for a Christian party) for 2 weeks plus Election day. These activities very likely violate section 340 ‘Prohibition of canvassing’

    If this activity (i.e. fraudulent text messaging, etc) was widespread and systematic nationwide, we have crossed a line into a conspiracy that threatens our Constitution and our way of electing a new Federal Government. With the rise of mass social media election campaign methods, radical parts of the trade union movement with their intimate ties to Labor, the recent royal commission into union corruption, perhaps you can see that what i write about is a plausible scenario.

    I don’t exactly know how to finish this blog. Duping voters by widespread illegal / fraudulent activity to win Government invalidates the whole election process and is a clear threat to our Constitution. The authorities must prosecute those responsible for these violations and the Governor-General may have no other course of action but to call another Federal Election.

  • I have always called Malcolm Turnbull the mole and he has proved himself to be that. In keeping with your assessment Bill, that the liberals mainly lost those who supported Malcolm last year, it is interesting to hear that he appears to resist any urgings to resign in order that the liberal party can become conservative again and to me that betrays the fact that he did the leadership spill for his own power rather than for the “good of the party” as stated at the time. Bill, I am also with you in that I prayed for him to lose his seat, that would have made things a lot easier for those trying to return the Liberal party to its support base. And I am glad to see that the increase of votes the labour party received did not come from the liberal vote, but from the greens, or at least it is so in the seat I stood in.
    Many blessings

  • Don’t count Simpkins out yet, since it hasn’t been called yet and I am hoping for him to win only to keep Anne Aly out of the seat. If Labor had a better candidate than an Islamic apologist, then I would have been very happy for Simpkins to be thrown out. The better of the two, which doesn’t say much.

  • Dear Bill, I agree with every single word you have written and I could name quite a few more that do too. Turnbull sickened me prior to the election blatantly supporting same sex marriage and he has the audacity to call himself a Christian.

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