Dim bulbs

Fresh Chicken Wholebird

 

Tony Abbott

 

 

 

 

 

They really do want to turn out our lights. First Ms Steggles, via Andrew Bolt: TONY ABBOTT IN WAR FOR THE SEAT THAT MOST DECIDES OUR FUTURE.

No wonder Tony Abbott feels hunted. The former prime minister is under savage attack because he holds the most important seat in this election.

So much will change if Abbott loses Warringah on Saturday to global-warming extremist Zali Steggall, the former skiing champion.

Global warming will become our dominant religion, the power of militant activists will soar, Liberal conservatives will be cowed and, given the swing needed, the Liberals will have lost the election.

The country will change. The Liberals will change.

And then there’s this from another within the green-side up brigade: Alex Turnbull teams up with GetUp as the voice of robocalls in key Victorian seats.

Malcolm Turnbull’s son Alex Turnbull has teamed up with left wing activist group GetUp to record robocall messages urging voters in key Victorian seats not to vote Liberal in Saturday’s federal election.

In Liberal backbencher Kevin Andrews’s eastern Melbourne seat of Menzies, voters will be played a radio clip of Alex Turnbull saying the Coalition is in chaos and doesn’t deserve anyone’s vote.

In Health Minister Greg Hunt’s Mornington Peninsula seat of Flinders, a recorded message will be sent to 17,000 voters, featuring Alex Turnbull saying, “we need more people who want action on climate change.”

The apple never falls far from the tree, worms and all.

The whether vane has shifted

Prime Minister Scott Morrison and former deputy leader Julie Bishop at the West Australian Liberal Party campaign rally. Picture: AAP

A good sign indeed of whether the Libs are in with a real chance: Key figures attend Lib rally in WA seat of Swan. That’s from The Oz.

Julie Bishop has heaped praise on Scott Morrison at a Liberal Party rally in Perth this evening.

“Scott’s been campaigning so well. I’m feeling very confident. I’ve been saying for a long time that we will win this election,” Ms Bishop told reporters after the prime minister’s speech.

“Scott’s a very experienced politician and he was a very good Treasurer, and he took on the role of Prime Minister in less than ideal circumstances and he’s done an exceedingly good job.”

And then there’s this in both The Age and the SMH: It took John Howard just one minute to deliver the campaign’s most potent attack on Bill Shorten. And look who’s in the picture.

Then Howard appealed to the voters of Warringah, on Sydney’s northern beaches.

“They’re not the big end of town. I mean, that is an insult to every successful small businessman who has worked hard accumulated a bit and wants to leave it to his kids,” Mr Howard said. “I mean that’s what this country is all about!”

John Howard meets shoppers flanked by Tony Abbott.
John Howard meets shoppers flanked by Tony Abbott.CREDIT:NICK MOIR

It was vintage Howard – a nod to Menzies’ forgotten Australians, a paean to suburban values, indignation for those who denigrate diligence, and yes, just a little bit old-fashioned in his gendered pronouns.

Malcolm, who’s Malcolm?

Steggall’s chickens

Fresh Chicken Wholebird

From the minute I first heard Zali’s name, I automatically associated it with chickens. Nothing personal, just the name. I am apparently not the only one. From Cut and Paste today. And if you keep reading further, you will see that some Green activists have now disguised themselves as plants. It’s appropriate, I suppose, to disguise yourself as a tree or a rose bush if you prefer the Greens, but it does really seem to be going too far, in my own view.

Chicken Man has made his political debut. Jacqueline Maley, The Sydney Morning Herald, Thursday:

A Liberal volunteer supporting Tony Abbott’s campaign for re-election in Warringah has denied he dressed up in a chicken suit in an attempt to derail the rival campaign of independent Zali Steggall. The high-stakes battle for Warringah already involves two “satirical superheroes”: Captain GetUp and more recently Freddie Foreign Money. But in recent weeks a new costumed political superhero has been seen around the electorate: Chicken Man … a person (of indeterminate gender) dressed up in a yellow chicken costume, who keeps showing up at Ms Steggall’s media appearances. Chicken Man seems intent on embarrassing Ms Steggall, brandishing signs which say “Labor for Steggall” and “GetUp for Zali”, which assert associations with Ms Steggall’s campaign that she is keen to dispel.

Tony Abbott tweeted, March 2:

Zali’s Liberal Army (today’s Manly Daily headline) has just two members. Julie Giannesini, who hasn’t been a member since 2007 and when she tried to rejoin late last year was rejected by the Mosman branch because she was so obviously a plant.

The ABC, online, yesterday:

This election, GetUp is focused on unseating conservative stalwarts within the Liberal Party. That’s why it is funnelling resources into the electorates of Liberal MPs Peter Dutton and Mr Abbott. But it says it is not campaigning on behalf of any candidates or parties. Advance Australia has billed itself as “conservative GetUp” and insists it is campaigning in Warringah because GetUp is. “We’re running a campaign to highlight that if people vote for Zali Steggall they’re going to vote for Bill Shorten,” says Gerard Benedet, the group’s director … The anti-Abbott coalition has brought together half a dozen groups across the Warringah electorate. Some are focused on climate change, while others just want to get Mr Abbott out. The coalition was set up by local woman Julie Giannesini. Linking Ms Steggall to GetUp has been a tactic of both the Abbott campaign and Advance Australia. Ms Steggall has hit back, saying: “I have no association with GetUp”.

All I can say is that if Zali really has no association with Get Up, it’s about the only thing positive about her I’ve heard.

A female Malcolm clone

The Libs have a handful of candidates who represent me – conservative, free market, and repulsed by the global warming con that is ruining Australia among other things. By a last minute Prime Ministerial throw of the die, Craig Kelly will run again in Hughes. But it was in the face of the nitwit wing of the party trying to do Kelly over. Now they are after Tony Abbott.

So who is it this time? Young. Female. Sports star. Legal beagle. Another Julia Banks in the making, although here running as an independent but an obvious stalking-horse for the Turnbull Wing: Four-time Olympian Zali Steggall launches bid to topple Tony Abbott in Warringah.

“I am in this to win it,” Ms Steggall told The Sydney Morning Herald and The Age. “I want to beat Tony Abbott, who has been a handbrake on Australian progress on many fronts but particularly effective action on climate change.[How many other power stations does she want blown up?]

“I know what I am getting into but I am not a wallflower – I am tough. [Incredible that she thinks being tough is the opposite of being a wallflower!] I learnt from sport that you have to put the work in, and can’t just turn up on the day hoping for the result. [What a deep and original example to us all about the need to learn from experience.] I will do the work for this, just as I did the work for sport and law.” …

The barrister wants federal Parliament to do more on climate change and [folks, prepare yourself] has been consulting former Australian of the Year, Professor Tim Flannery on policy options. She said an emissions trading scheme model had been “overtaken” by private sector investment in renewables [any government subsidies here, Ms Steggall, or don’t they matter?] but unlike Mr Abbott is not opposed to a mechanism that ties the economy to emissions reductions.

“It needs to be a multi-faceted strategy. It’s not a quick fix, it won’t be a quick solution. it has taken years to get into this mess and will take time to get ourselves out of it.” …

The former prime minister, who has fought and won nine elections in Warringah, faces a Melbourne Cup field of candidates at the election and has previously described independent aspirants as “Labor in disguise” [although in this case not all that much of a disguise].

“That actually shows how out of touch he is,” Ms Steggall said. “A broad part of my support base is the extremely dissatisfied, long-term, moderate Liberal voters who are looking for [unspecified] sensible financial policies [MMT perhaps?] but progressive social attitudes.

“Tony Abbott does not represent me, or the views of most of the people I know in this electorate [she really should get out more often], and I want to replace him.” …

“Winning the seat is not enough. I want to do something with the position. I would like to be part of coming up with solutions for climate change, so I can look my children in the eye [as they shiver freezing in the dark].”

I can see her point: where would the Winter Olympics be if there were no snow? I can also see that with her specialty in downhill, that she would be quite an asset for the direction a Labor government will take us. But if the Libs really truly wish to drive people like me away, propping candidates like her up is a surefire way to do it. Meanwhile, in the non-surprise of the week, Labor considers preferencing independent Warringah candidate Zali Steggall.

No wonder Tony lost his job

No wonder Tony Abbott lost his job. No one can any longer follow straightforward common sense.

There will always be some Liberals who want the party to go further on climate change or be more compassionate on boatpeople. There will always be others to question turning the economy upside down when it won’t make any difference to emissions, and to caution against anything that might embolden the people-smugglers. It’s not a question of decency versus hardness of heart but of what really is the most ­humane thing to do. The leader’s job is to get the balance right.

There are people who actually believe that global warming is the greatest moral challenge of our time, and other who think it’s not. There are people who actually believe that open borders are morally just, and others who do not. And both sides are found in the Liberal Party.

I am with Tony on both of these. I am disgusted by the deceitfulness of the global warmists, and cannot believe the shallow arguments associated with bringing in boatloads of migrants. You can think of this as ideological if you like, but it just seems obvious, with plenty of evidence of a downside to both – see the fall – kinda – of Mrs Merkel and the turmoil in German society that has come from her pursuit of both green energy and open borders.

All of this, to me, are conclusions from an overwhelming pile of evidence. Same goes for free markets capitalism.

Tony Abbott is our Donald Trump. But he was a Prime Minister not a President isolated from a need for cabinet solidarity. He was brought low by one of the most deceitful and duplicitous politicians in Australian history – fully supported by our ABC. But if you think things are bad now, wait till after Labor takes over.

How did we end up with such a dud for PM?

All this is pulled from Andrew Bolt under the heading, Turnbull wrong, Abbott right: the boats must be stopped.

Malcolm Turnbull chose the wrong time to rebuke Tony Abbott on border policy – just hours before the French attacks:

MALCOLM Turnbull has delivered a slap-down to Tony Abbott for lecturing European leaders over their refugee policies as he arrived in Berlin…

As Mr Turnbull cemented his alliance with Dr Merkel – a successful conservative German Chancellor for a decade and the most powerful leader in Europe – he also rebuked Mr Abbott for criticising her stance on refugees fleeing war in the Middle East.

Mr Abbott last month used a speech in London to urge European leaders to copy his tough policies against people smugglers by turning back boats at sea and denying entry to asylum seekers who have passed through other safe countries…

Asked about Mr Abbott’s comments after his meeting with Dr Merkel in Berlin, Mr Turnbull said he would not lecture other countries about their policies.

“We had a very good discussion but I have no intention or desire to give advice on these matters to the German Chancellor,” Mr Turnbull said.

“Each country faces very different circumstances, not least of which are geographic…”

Same spin in the Financial Review:

Malcolm Turnbull has repudiated Tony Abbott over his warnings to Europe about asylum seekers, whilst standing alongside Angela Merkel, the German chancellor who has offered to take in 800,000 people fleeing the Syrian war.

Same spin before the meeting from the well-briefed Australian:

Malcolm Turnbull will break with Tony Abbott’s message on the flood of refugees into Europe after landing in Germany for talks on defence, trade and border protection…

… there will be no “lecture” to Ms Merkel about the lessons from Australia’s policy of turning back asylum seeker boats, weeks after Mr Abbott used a speech in London to declare that Europe needed to adopt the same approach.

The Australian understands the Prime Minister will emphasise Australia’s success at resettling thousands of refugees every year and note the ethnic diversity that has come from each wave of new migrants.

But now we read this:

The holder of a Syrian passport found near the body of one of the gunmen who died in Friday night’s attacks in Paris passed though Greece in October, a Greek minister said.

“The holder of the passport passed through the island of Leros on Oct. 3, 2015, where he was identified according to EU rules,” said Greece’s deputy minister in charge of police, Nikos Toskas, in a statement.

A Greek police source said the passport’s owner was a young man who had arrived in Leros with a group of 69 refugees and had his fingerprints taken by authorities there. Police declined to give his name.

Abbott today:

FORMER prime minister Tony Abbott has warned the risk that terrorists are hiding among the flood of refugees fleeing Islamic State underlines his warning on the need for tougher border controls.

Europe’s “catastrophic error”

The headline writer chose this, Europe must follow our lead on turnbacks: Tony Abbott but the first sentence says what he was really trying to say:

Europe is heading towards a “catastrophic error” that could change it forever and must instead study and adopt Australia’s policy to turn back the tide of asylum-seekers, Tony Abbott said today.

Delivering the second ­Thatcher Lecture at London’s Guildhall, the former prime minister also called for more to be done to strike Islamic State terrorism “at its source” and said it was a pity a recent summit by world leaders looked only at countering violent extremism and not the ­inspiration for it.

In his first significant speech since he was toppled by Malcolm Turnbull six weeks ago, Mr Abbott said his invitation to give the lecture “suggests there was at least a hint of Thatcherism about my government in Australia”.

For some, a hint of Thatcherism is the kiss of death. For others, who have some idea of the stakes involved, there cannot be enough of Mrs Thatcher and what she stood for. What he and she understood is the difference between right and wrong. Now it is the difference between good and evil, and even so the left is blind to it all. And here’s the advice:

Europe should study how Australia had stopped the boats and restored border security as “the only compassionate thing to do”.

“This means turning boats around, for people coming by sea. It means denying entry at the border, for people with no legal right to come; and it means establishing camps for people who currently have nowhere to go,” he said.

“It requires some force; it will ­require massive logistics and ­expense; it will gnaw at our consciences — yet it is the only way to prevent a tide of humanity surging through Europe and quite possibly changing it forever.

“The Australian experience proves that the only way to dissuade people seeking to come from afar is not to let them in.”

In the meantime, it can only be hoped that Malcolm gets the message before we end up in the same boat as Europe. Abbott is world class, one of the deepest thinkers ever to rise to high office in this country. It’s only a shame that what he saw and understood was too difficult, not just for the media and the left in general, which is to be expected, but for the people who he had to deal with in cabinet and in his own party room.

AND CONTINUING: This has been cross-posted at Catallaxy and the comments thread is quite interesting. Hard for me to imagine people who would disagree with Abbott on these issues but, I guess, with much of the right self-identified as “libertarian”, and therefore open-borders, perhaps it’s not that surprising after all. I have added two comments of my own. First this:

Abbott was all Thatcher but where was his Keith Joseph? And Margaret didn’t have to put up with a creep like Turnbull who relentlessly stalked his own PM to the extent that nothing debated in cabinet was not the next day being aired on the news. But Margaret was famous for her foreign policy even more than the economics. She with Ronald Reagan and the Pope stared down the Evil Empire, not to mention Argentina and the Falklands. I only wish we had a Margaret Thatcher somewhere in one of the major countries of the West. Instead we have Obama, Merkel and Malcolm. There is some potential in Cameron but he, too, is no Margaret Thatcher.

And then this:

Dealing with migration and the Islamic State is the issue of our time in the same way that dealing with the Soviet Union was the issue of her time. Who besides Tony gets it? As for economics, this is from her first budget in 1979:
.

The 8 and 12.5 per cent VAT rates were unified at 15 per cent, putting around 3.75 per cent on the RPI. There was also a 7p increase in petrol duty, adding 10p to a gallon when VAT was added in. (For RPI reasons, alcohol and tobacco duties were left untouched.) The oil companies were tapped: Petroleum Revenue Tax (PRT) was increased from 45 to 60p and BNOC lost its exemption from the tax.

Let us compare with Joe defending his first budget in 2013:
.

An emotional Mr Hockey described his first budget, which included the now-dumped GP co-payment, plans to uncap university fees and increased fuel and income taxes, as too courageous for the Parliament.

We will see as time goes by who will be as courageous as Joe and Tony were then. I suspect there is no one around who will take these issues on, least of all the current incumbent, who was probably leaking as furiously as he could to all his mates at the ABC.

This Abbott Derangement Syndrome truly is a form of insanity. People who think politics is no more difficult than agreeing with your friends while sitting around your dining room ought to get out once in a while. Abbott had a right to expect some slack from those who understand what the other side represents but political sophistication is as rare as a modern economist’s understanding of the operation of a market economy.

“Steve Kates on Malcolm Turnbull”

If you google, “Steve Kates on Malcolm Turnbull”, these are the first two items that come up:

Malcolm Turnbull for PM | Catallaxy Files
catallaxyfiles.com/2015/09/16/malcolm-turnbull-for-pm/
Malcolm Turnbull for PM. Posted on 9:36 am, September 16, 2015 by Steve Kates. Every political … 375 Responses to Malcolm Turnbull for PM. « Previous 1 2.

I would never vote for a Coalition led by Malcolm Turnbull
catallaxyfiles.com/…/i-would-never-vote-for-a-coalition-led-by-malcolm…
Posted on 9:01 am, February 27, 2015 by Steve Kates. Andrew Bolt says that Malcolm Turnbull is about to have his final go at taking over the leadership of the …

The first of these, written just as he became PM, ends like this:

The Liberal Party is filled with others like Malcolm and it is a problem. But here is where we are. There are the 44 who are still in the party room, and there are the Coalition National Party also in the government. And Labor is a disaster in the making of such massive proportion, of the Bernie Sanders and Jeremy Corbyn variety, that not voting Coalition at the next election is unthinkable. Malcolm has now got this to add to his CV, everyone in the party room knows the extent to which he is an empty vessel, but the stakes are too high even to think about Bill Shorten, never mind Tanya as PM.

The second, written a few months before, begins like this:

When I used to work in Canberra, our offices backed onto the Liberal Party headquarters, and I was asked one time, even before Malcolm entered Parliament, what I thought about him. My answer was that if I was in the constituency that would decide the fate of the next election, and my vote was the one that would put him in or out, that I would hesitate about which way to go. That was then. Today I would have no doubt.

So here’s the deal. We have the likes of Gary Johns, with so many others over at The Australian, following company orders in trying to convince the rest of us to take the switch to Malcolm as a fait accompli about which nothing can be done, so just lie back and enjoy it. But things don’t work like that. And there are two reasons for me not to sit back and take it.

First, what’s the point of blogging if you don’t say what you want about the things that interest you? I think Malcolm’s political instincts are dreadful and his personal values a disgrace. I am angry he is now PM, and I think the Coalition is less likely to win the next election than if Tony had remained. He’s barely ahead and he hasn’t done a single unpopular thing. Tony only did what was ABC-unpopular and was within easy striking distance. He was a mile ahead in Canning, which is why the coup happened when it did. Tony was odds-on to win in 2016.

The second derives from the first. If we all become pragmatists, then Malcolm and his slimy crew can get away with anything they want, since they can always say that Bill and Tanya are worse. The challenge now for Malcolm and the 54 is to keep us onside who are now offside. You know, there is this meeting in Paris, and then there is the need to keep the boats stopped, and there are lots of other things just as important to people like me. And on this I rate the economy high. I don’t think Tony did get it, but I also don’t think Malcolm gets it, and he doesn’t get it even worse than Tony didn’t get it. The NBN has been my standard test, and Malcolm is a capital-F Fail.

Tony was not perfect, but he was far more perfect than Malcolm. I could give you the list, but I am pragmatic to my back teeth. I take each of those who are leaders and accept that they come as a package deal since what else can you do? Malcolm now has his work cut out for him to convince people such as myself that he thinks our views matter. If he doesn’t end up showing he is responsive to the political wishes of conservative voters, he may find out all too soon how much it really mattered after all.

UPDATE: Alerted by CL, we have this from The Oz this morning, Ousted PM Tony Abbott speaks to Ray Hadley. From which we learn:

“If you judge things by the polls, I’ve never been very popular. All through the days of Opposition my personal ratings were poor, but it didn’t stop us,” the Prime Minister told 2GB’s Ray Hadley in his first broadcast interview since being ousted as prime minister.

“Our politics rightly or wrongly is more and more presidential. You can be not especially popular in these personal approval or disapproval ratings and at the same time lead a very effective political operation.

“We saw with David Cameron in Britain just a couple of months back the British conservative government was behind in the polls the entire time – absolutely the entire five years they were behind in the polls – and then they had really quite a convincing victory.

“I am confident that had I continued at the head of the government that’s exactly what we would have had,” he said.

My view as well.

Andrew Bolt on Tony Abbott

This is Andrew Bolt’s column on Tony Abbott which you need to breach the pay wall to read in full. But it really ought to be read in full so here it is.

NOW Tony Abbott is gone I can finally tell the truth about him. Folks, you made a big mistake with this bloke.

No, no. The mistake wasn’t that you voted for him.

In fact, you got one of the finest human beings to be Prime Minister.

In many ways he seemed too moral for the job, yet he achieved more in two years than the last two Labor prime ministers achieved in six.

Compare. Kevin Rudd and Julia Gillard left us with record deficits after blowing billions on trash — on overpriced school halls, “free” insulation that killed people, green schemes that collapsed, “stimulus” checks to the dead.

They meanwhile opened our borders to 50,000 illegal immigrants and drowned 1200. They hyped the global warming scare and forced us to pay a job-killing carbon tax just to pretend they were saving us.

But Abbott? I won’t go through the whole list: how he stopped the boats, curbed spending, scrapped the useless carbon and mining taxes, led the world’s defiance of deadly Russian strongman Vladimir Putin and made us safer from terrorism.

He even signed three free trade deals to secure jobs for our kids — including one with China that the last three governments couldn’t clinch.

And he did all this in the face of astonishing heckling and even vilification from our media class, and despite often feral opposition in the Senate.

But your mistake was not to care about all that. Deeds didn’t count with you. Image was all.

And so you told the pollsters you didn’t like Abbott. You believed the vicious crap written about him, until his MPs finally panicked and dumped him.

Your mistake was that you couldn’t look behind the flim flam — the way Abbott looked, the way he spoke, the way he walked, the way he ate an onion — to see what he’d actually done for you and for your country.

You even laughed at some of his finest qualities and emblems of his public service. Journalists ridiculed his work as a lifesaver by mocking his costume and body hair. They dismissed his firefighting service as just a photo-op. Wrote off his patriotism as bigotry.

When he defended women, he was called insincere. When he warned that our finances were in strife or that terrorism menaced us, they called him a scaremonger.

And you believed them. You let people treat like absolute dirt a man who had a record of volunteerism no prime minister has equalled — working in Aboriginal communities, lifesaving, firefighting, helping people in natural disasters, and raising money for women’s shelters and a hospice for dying children.

And none of it was done just to puff his CV for an election pamphlet.

The only reason I know Abbott helped people secure their homes after one Sydney storm is that my wife’s uncle asked the head of the team getting the tree off his house if that really was Abbott over there, helping to cut it away.

Shush, said the captain. He doesn’t like people knowing.

Now, I must declare straight up — I call Tony Abbott a friend.

So you’ll call me biased. You’ll laugh that I can write this massive praise of him when almost everyone else is horse-laughing. And you’ll say that’s why I see more qualities in Abbott than are actually there.

But you’ll just be making another mistake.

See, I don’t think Abbott is a great man because he’s my friend. He’s my friend because he’s a great man. Greater than the people who tore him down.

He’s my friend especially because he’s not those things that so many journalists wrote — including some who must have known what they wrote were lies.

Truth is that Abbott is not a thug, bully, racist, fool, liar, woman-hater, homophobe or bigot. He’s not cruel or lacking compassion.

If he were any of those things he would not be my friend. Those are deal breakers for me. Those I love best are people of honour, warmth and kindness.

Tony Abbott is one such man, and that he has been betrayed and deposed doesn’t just break my heart. It makes me fear for this country. I can only hope that Australians will one day wake up to what they’ve tossed away.

Sorry to sound so melodramatic, but here are some glimpses of the man I know — ones that put the lie to the trash that even big-name correspondents peddled about him.

The media and the left are among the people least capable of seeing goodness in others. And it’s not as if these qualities were invisible even to those of us who were not among his friends. If you are part of the anti-Abbott collective of this country, you are part of the problem and in no way part of the kind of humane solutions Tony Abbott tried to bring to political decision making in this country. We are all the worse for his departure. There are some who do not know this because they are so shrivelled inside that they incapable of knowing this. But there are some, thankfully, who understood what a great Prime Minister we had and know exactly what we have lost.

The ABC wing of the Liberal Party

It used to be my view that it was the Senate that was the largest obstacle to getting things done, but now I can see that the ABC-wing of the Liberal Party played its fair share as well.

How much internal infighting did Tony Abbott have to put up with? He says today that his legacy is the key to a future Coalition win at the next election, so obviously true that only someone as narcissistic as the PM could deny it. But the scale of things, large and small, that Abbott had a fight on his hands over, on issues that ought to have been obvious and uncontroversial within his own side, is shown by the story right next to the one on Abbott: Tony’s Demise Opens Door to UN Top Job for Rudd. The idea of Kevin as Secretary General of the United Nations is such an idiocy, that only because we know that the PM and Mark Scott are ideological identical twins that we have no doubts about what the policy was and how it has now been changed. No doubt there is much more we will find out in the days to come, along with much else we will never hear a word about as Tony’s legacy is undermined bit by bit as best they can.