Being in government isn’t a licence to impose your privileged ideology

Another good piece by Jennifer Wilson of No Place for Sheep on the turnbull regime’s latest blow for the privileged. Yes, this is class war – and they started it! As always, thank you, Jennifer.

Look, you may already be across this but for various reasons I’ve only just caught up. Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull actually proposed that the states take on the entire responsibility for funding public schools, while Turnbull’s own government, proposing nary a cent to the project of educating children who don’t attend private schools, is happy to continue its excessive fiscal support of educational privilege.

Aside: It’s usually against my personal code of not wasting time with click bait to read, let alone link to Mamamia, however I like to think I’m big enough to overlook that code under exceptional circumstances so I did.

I cannot see any sense, decency, respect, care or concern for the country’s future in such a move. It is pure ideology. It comes a mere two weeks or so after the appointment of new Liberal Senator James Paterson, who declared that public school kids lack a work ethic found in private school kids, an interesting indictment seeing as he is himself the product of the public school system.

Oh wait. Paterson probably thinks he’s exceptional. Believing yourself to be exceptional is a core requirement for membership of the LNP. Please read: public school kids with the notable exception of James Paterson, don’t have a work ethic as strong as private school kids.

These arrogant, privileged twerps are in need of a damn good smack down and some serious re-education as to what the role of government actually is. It isn’t a licence to impose an ideology of privilege. It is the responsibility to ensure as far as is possible equal access across society to core necessities such as education. To do otherwise is to bring a country to its knees. Intelligence and talent are not restricted to postcodes. Any nation that limits the potential of its young is a nation in its death throes. If you don’t believe me, please note that the majority of this government was educated in private schools. Need I say more?

This is class warfare. Federal de-funding of public schools while continuing funding of private schools is a divisive and dangerous proposition. It perpetuates the myth that having money (no matter how you got it or where you hide it) is morally sound; that money in and of itself has a moral value that supersedes the manner in which it is obtained.

Good government isn’t divisive and dangerous, and it isn’t focused on ideology. It’s capable of some semblance of economic literacy as well. Turnbull’s government is exceptionally agile with economic policy: it should be a star turn at Cirque du Soleil.

395 thoughts on “Being in government isn’t a licence to impose your privileged ideology

  1. In Anus Taylor’s electorate of Hume. Is Tones trying to win or lose votes by giving these poor kids a reject book that none of them will ever read?

  2. I suppose he has to get rid of the remaindered copies as best he can. He must have a storage bay full of the things.

    A question – is it appropriate for a back-bencher from another electorate to turn up at schools and mayoral welcomes where he is treated as if he is still PM? Because that is exactly what is going on here. I presume Angus Taylor, being the local member and a participant in Pollie Pedal introduced him, but that still doesn’t answer the question. Tony is a nobody these days.

  3. Worth mentioning – Taylor backed Abbott in the leadership spill and was cruelly overlooked (as they say) for a position in Turnbull’s ministry. Mates helping out mates, I suppose.

  4. Schools like Caragabal have a wildly fluctuating enrollment. I went to a similar school not a million miles away. The year I commenced we had an increase in numbers of about 75% due to 3 sets of twins starting and a new head stockman at the large corporate property nearby who had about 6 kids of primary school age plus the usual baby boomer surge.
    When we passed through the system the numbers dropped dramatically , so the Govt of the day took the opportunity to close down the school.Everybody had to take the bus service to the big town about 30Kms away on a terrible road.
    We had a library of about a dozen books, Lawson, Patterson, O’Brien (all locally bred), Barcroft Boake, Marcus Clarke and Dickens. A book such as Abbotts would have used only for raising something important off the floor or as a doorstop, probably its fate at Caragabal..
    Angus whatsy was the flavour of the month when he was first elected probably because as the replacement for Alby Shultz it was easy to look good, but several of my many rellos in the electorate tell me that much of the shine has gone off him. He is blamed for a lot of the Abbott comeback kerfuffle and there is a strong belief that he is too busy with internal politicking to do anything for the people who elected him. He wont lose, but he will get a kick in the goolies come the election.

    • ” but he will get a kick in the goolies come the election.”…Not good enough…May I suggest ; a pineapple..rough end of?

    • Hope you’re right Kambah. One interesting thing about Hume is that after the reshuffle, the action moves to the north of the electorate, where Taylor is not really known. We haven’t won Hume I think since 72, which is no surprise as we always put in just a token effort. This time the new candidate has a more energised team behind her. We’ll get a good swing, maybe not enough but stranger things have happened.

    • I am reliably informed by a couple of rusted on Lib voting rellos that with Angus, to know him is not to love him. A little bit of Angus telling you how much smarter he is than anyone he knows takes a lot of sheen off your day.

    • He’s also one of the Liberal Party’s main supporters of Coal Seam Gas. He was a member of the Reith Commission on CSG set up by Napthene in 2012. That is not a popular position in Wollondilly and Camden parts of Hume.

      I have now put “Angus Taylor” into google alerts, and will be following the guy closely.

    • Some subbies must have a sense of humour. Not they have a lot to smile about these days.

  5. Newspoll: Most voters have no regrets at Tony Abbott’s turfing
    The Australian April 6, 2016 12:00AM
    Phillip Hudson Bureau Chief Canberra

    Voters still believe the Liberal Party did the right thing by replacing Tony Abbott with Malcolm Turnbull, despite the Coalition surrendering its lead to Labor for the first time since the leadership change.

    A special Newspoll, taken ­exclusively for The Australian, ­reveals 57 per cent of voters continue to support the switch in September last year to make Mr Turnbull Prime Minister, while 31 per cent do not.

    The poll of 1743 people taken from Thursday to Sunday also shows Mr Turnbull remains the top choice as Liberal leader. Among Coalition voters, his support is double the level for Mr ­Abbott.

    One in five voters prefer Julie Bishop as leader the Liberal Party but fewer than one in 10 favour Scott Morrison for the top job.

    Six months after Mr Turnbull knifed Mr Abbott, Newspoll shows 57 per cent of voters say the Liberal Party did the right thing, a drop from the 62 per cent who endorsed the move after the first month.

    However, the fall is entirely among Labor voters, where support for the prime ministerial change has fallen from 71 per cent to 59 per cent.

    Support from Coalition voters for the leadership change has firmed one point to 57 per cent, while those opposed has fallen two points to 34 per cent.

    The stable support for the leadership change among Coalition voters comes despite a tumble in Mr Turnbull’s personal standing over the same period.

    The special Newspoll also shows 35 per cent of voters say Mr Turnbull is the best choice for Liberal leader ahead of his deputy, Ms Bishop on 22 per cent. Mr Abbott is favoured by 14 per cent, with the Treasurer’s support at 8 per cent and 21 per cent undecided.

    Among Coalition voters, Mr Turnbull’s support leaps to 48 per cent, more than double the 20 per cent backing for Mr Abbott. Ms Bishop is third with 16 per cent, with Mr Morrison on 8 per cent.

    Among Labor voters, Ms Bishop is almost as popular as Mr Turnbull. The poll found 30 per cent of ALP supporters thought Mr Turnbull the best Liberal leader while 28 per cent wanted Ms Bishop. Mr Abbott was on 11 per cent, with Mr Morrison trailing on 7 per cent.

    Mr Turnbull cited Newspoll as an authority when he launched his challenge against Mr Abbott in September, saying there was a need to change the “trajectory” that had the government lose 30 Newspolls in a row.

    Yesterday he said he would not be a commentator on the poll, which showed Labor ahead by 51 per cent to the Coalition’s 49 per cent, after preferences. It is the first time the opposition has been ahead since Mr Abbott was deposed 205 days ago.

    The Coalition’s primary vote has fallen to 41 per cent, dropping five points this year. Labor’s primary vote climbed to a six-month high of 36 per cent.

    Mr Turnbull remains preferred prime minister over Bill Shorten but satisfaction with his performance has fallen 15 points this year to 38 per cent.


  7. Politics in the pub report…
    Cathy wilcox good value, very funny. ran through some of her cartoons explaining her thoughts etc.. q&a mainly focused on cartooning process rather than actual politics. Good choice for a first PI the Pub – not to heavy.

    Did learn a new ‘word’ that is apparently popular in the newsroom, rather than ‘neo-cons’, now they are ‘Del-Cons’! Deluded Conservatives!! LOL.

  8. Also see this (I’ve read the book it mentions, At Day’s Close: Night in Times Past)

  9. It’s long, but it’s the best article yet on the subject. Joe (who is a bit of an arsehole himself) takes a swing at Sam

  10. On Twitter recently, Gigi asked me if Australians were too accepting of corruption. After the Panama Files story broke, the people of Iceland staged a huge demonstration forcing the PM to resign. Why not the same here, with plenty of evidence against our banking, financial advising and insurance industries?

    I think it is a fairly recent phenomenum, starting in the Deregulation era from the 1980s onwards. Privatisation, private-public partnerships in infrastructure, outsourcing of services (often going to favoured ‘insiders’) all contributed to it. The organising of specialist advisers in the political parties, plus the growth of lobby groups were other factors. It can be subtle and accumulative over time.

    One of the best expositions of it that I can remember were in the TV series by Clarke and Dawe The Games (2000, coinciding with the Sydney Olympics). In one episode, Bryan, an executive with NSW Public Transport came up with a brilliant scheme for moving vast numbers of people with a simple ticketing system. It was radical and imaginative, working smoothly for minimal cost. It was taken to the minister’s office for approval, which inexplicably was delayed.

    Finally they met Sam Neill playing a Special Consultant. The scheme would be approved after the expert Consultants had been over it before signing off on it. They already had all the detail they needed through Bryan and his staff. The only reason for the Consultant was to allow an insider to cream off on the project. I fear a lot of ‘consultants’ work in that fashion. It is another major growth area in government spending and one removed from many of the checks and balances that would have been in place in the old public sector.

    So in many respects it has crept up on us without us really noticing. We see a variation of it with the way James Packer has got both political parties, and state and federal, onside for his casino development project on prime public land, more or less thumbing his nose at environmental, planning and public interest laws. We don’t seem to look on it as corruption because the various boards pushing it through are virtually a political who’s who of the major parties. But it is a selling out. I don’t want to venture into the affairs of Macquarie Bank, but it seems to have an uncomfortable ‘insider’ feel to a lot of the brokering and privatising deals that they land through contacts.

    It wasn’t always that way. Local government was always a bit at the mercy of ambitious property developers and rezoners but balanced a little by state governments. The state and commonwealth governments inherited a British colonial public service which was relatively free of corruption. Not fully, as we saw with Joh in Queensland, and NSW politics. But less so than local government. The commonwealth set a higher standard again, particularly from Chifley’s time when (following the Depression and the War) there was a strong commitment to public service.

    We’re still able to produce top quality bureaucrats such as Ken Henry and others. Yet governments now seem less dependent on their advice on policy. Partly it is for the reasons outlined. It is also a by-product of contempt for the public sector which was a feature of the Reagan Thatcher years and has continued long after they’ve been discredited.

    • I’ve seen how ‘consultants’ messed up restructures in NSW TAFE, and I’ve read that consultants were responsible for the decision to get rid of the ABC’s regional reporters and services.

      Funny though, how these consultants on public service matters never ever recommend pruning the very dead wood at the top of the tree. Instead the bottom tiers, the real workers, are pruned, sacked, given forced redundancies if they are lucky, while more and more high-level management positions are created and the top dogs always end up with pay rises.

    • Trying to give you a “like”, GD!! Agree with the use of consultants for huge fees…my ex was one of those. Am a great supporter of the public service and rue the death of the ideal of the public good. Our egalitarism is at risk.

  11. I don’t know why I’m listening to 3AW at the moment. Probably for the comedy.

    It’s interesting though. The reactionary ratbags are all crying about Tony Abbott and at times sounding like they’re trying to anoint him to sainthood over the pollie pedal.

    Price just stated a phone poll saying 87% of callers want Abbott to return as Prime Minister (4% for Turnbull, 2% for Morrison).

    The main thing I get by listening is that the right is not happy with Turnbull, and the chance that the Liberals are going to go through what Labor went through in 2013 with support between him and Abbott split is real.

    However, seeing today’s lib leader poll, I have to wonder if the right end up attempting to sabotage Turnbull’s campaign with disloyalty, what would happen if Julie Bishop steps in just before the election?

    • Instant election loss, that’s what would happen. Liberal voters are never going to accept an unmarried, living-in-sin, string of questionable political lovers in her past, deliberately barren woman as leader.

    • Yeah, that makes sense. So any move the Libs make will be a losing one.

      Do nothing, and watch as Turnbull bumbles his way to a probable loss from his political ineptitude.

      Put Abbott back in, Credlin will come back as well and put the bubble back around him and his incompetence and be smashed at the election.

      Put Bishop in, she’ll get no loyalty, and the right will still hate and undermine her.

      And lastly, put someone else in (like Kevin Andrews) and just… laugh. Oh well. At least the popcorn industry will likely do well this year. Shame about every other industry under this government.

    • Leone,

      If Liberal voters are told by their betters that what Jooles does at home is Jooles’ own business, they will accept it and vote for her.

      Besides which, she’s so pretty (well, okay, that depends on your predilections).

    • Lovely Little Bronnycopter has been reduced to stacking the Mackellar selection panel with her own staff members in a desperate last-ditch effort to hang on to her seat.

      Four Bronwyn Bishop employees on list of Mackellar preselectors

      Even the Newport Yacht Club thinks she is now a dead duck and has removed her personal parking spot.

      As for Bananas – she is the eternal deputy, where she belongs, beside the male leader of the day, looking up at him adoringly, like a good liberal woman should. And she has said a zillion times she just lerves being foreign Minister, it’s her dream job.

    • Leone,

      One can only hope – and I do apologise for getting the name wrong. It should have been ‘Bodgie Little Bronnycopter’.

      I shall depart now, and sneeze my way to bed (thought it was just a plane tree allergy, now feels like that crossed with a variant of the Black Death).

  12. The royal commission into trade union governance and corruption has apologised to the construction union after giving its confidential documents to another party.

    On Wednesday the Construction Forestry Mining Energy Union alerted the royal commission that in a further breach it had sent the union confidential information of another company’s employees, the same information which the royal commission had criticised other parties for leaking in 2013.

    Return to sender: unions royal commission apologises over privacy blunder

    • Probably happened because poor old Dyson doesn’t know how to handle these newfangled electronicky communication thinggies.

    • A trap for young and old players.

      Colleague and I constantly berate students – whether undergraduate (including honours) or graduate – about the use of referents.

      I have 42 assignments to assess over the next few days (second year students).

  13. Lies, damn lies, and broadband statistics:

    The Bureau has combined the categories “8Mbps to less than 24Mbps” and “24Mbps or greater” into a single category titled “8Mbps or greater.”
    Why remove the faster category?

    It makes no sense to do so in the context of the politics swirling around Australia’s national broadband network (NBN): the government, having moved away from a fibre-to-the-premises (FTTP) build in favour of a less scalable fibre-to-the-node (FTTN) build surely wants to be able to advertise that the project is delivering the promised 25Mbps connections.

    Unless FTTN isn’t delivering, in which case it makes sense to bury the true state of affairs …

    Australian Bureau of Statistics stops counting 24Mbps broadband services

  14. Just having another look at this:

    (I hope that’s worked – just copied the link from Leroy above)

    The ‘best choice for Liberal leader’ figures are fascinating. You would have thought the Liberals had turned to Turnbull for his crossover appeal. But those figures suggest the opposite. About half of the Liberal voters want to keep Turnbull there, and support for Abbott – who is being spruiked to the max by the right wing press – is mired down at 20%. It suggests Liberal voters are hunkering down behind their only shot at retaining power.

    ALP voters, on the other hand, look as if they couldn’t give a rats who’s leading the Liberals at the moment. Turnbull’s virtually on a par with Bishop. That suggests ALP voters are well aware that it doesn’t matter who leads them, they’re always going to be Liberals.

    On those figures, you’d think that there’s no chance of a change of Liberal leader before the election, whether their figures tank or not. Liberal voters have no faith in anyone much, they’re just hoping against hope that Turnbull can hang on. It also seems that there’s little chance of Turnbull hoodwinking the electorate either. They have to campaign on ‘Liberal values’, the same Liberal values that Abbott was selling for the first two years of their term.

    And that it’s probably those Liberal values that are dragging their poll figures down. The Liberals have played their Turnbull card, and it no longer has any value.

  15. Aguirre,

    The last couple of days in particular has made it abundantly clear – even to the ‘average’ voter – what it is that Liberals value.

    • The disconnect between the image that Turnbull projected (soft-Liberal progressive) and the reality of what he – or his party – really represent had to be exposed at some point. It couldn’t last. It makes me wonder why he didn’t just race to an election as early as he could after assuming the PM-ship.

      It just seems so totally counterproductive for them to elevate him on his ‘credentials’ and then just let the whole sham be progressively exposed. And drag on and on. What did they think was going to happen? There was barely any energy directed toward fooling the electorate. They just put him up there and carried on with the hard-right bastardry. Crazy.

    • Aguirre,

      The other aspect (if there is another aspect to Turnbull – though I’m beginning to suspect he may have outdone Peacock by becoming a one-dimensional person) is his “I am firm and manly and honourable” stance.

      Moi is quite happy to join Ms Hanson in asking “Please explain”.

  16. Aguirre,

    Crazy indeed.

    The other thing I’ve been sort of contemplating is an appeal from the IPA (obviously they have more authority than the libs or the nuts) to their corporate sponsors:

    “Hey, guys!

    Whaddabout chipping in 0.01% of what might have been your taxable income in Australia had you not arranged things otherwise to pay into the Oz coffers so the ‘guvmint’ doesn’t have to slam down too hard on the undeserving poor?

    Might give us another three years in office to put other and much more secure arrangements in place.”

    Nah, calling in the stormtroopers would be far easier, though I’m a bit worried about how they’d target their 2016 version of Kristallnacht.

  17. Sydney’s insane real estate prices –

    $850,000 for this disaster. I just love the way you have to climb across the fireplace to get to the stairs, and the burnt-out rooms are just so delightful.

    Around here that sort of money would buy you a mansion, or a very nice rural property on acreage, or a waterfront apartment. In Sydney it gets you a pokey two-up two-down wreck that will need a fortune spent on making it habitable before you can move in.And some fool will pay much more than the going price to snap it up. City folks are nuts, really they are.

  18. Leone,

    Insane is the only word.

    Insane is also what OH and I were called 32 years ago. Insane is still right – given what needed to be done, and what hasn’t been done.

    That’s a whole other story: don’t wont to bore you Pubsters.

    • Excellent article, but why did it take Ms Farrelly so long to write it? Didn’t she know about the IPA until this week?

      Judging by the comments, others had no idea either.

    • She is an interesting writer, but I don’t think looks closely at the forces behind movements. So possibly it is news to her, albeit the leftist tragics have been complaining for yonks about the way IPA has swamped talks programs on the ABC. This is despite wanting to abolish the ABC. Well, it’s consistent with Tim Wilson taking up a $300,000 sinecure as Human Rights Commissioner.

      My memory’s failing me a bit now, but I think it was her predicting a long enlightened reign from Malcolm Turnbull. That turned out to be a bit naive.

    • There’s nothing wrong with your memory.

      She did indeed write that piece. She might as well have gone all the way and titled it ‘And he shall reign for ever and ever’, it was so gushing, so deluded.

      When Malcolm says “good teachers change lives”; when he reminds the G20 of the “potential for renewable energy, especially solar”; when he warns China “not to fall into a Thucydides trap”, bringing war to the South China Sea; when he promises friendship and support to Indonesia or insists – in contrast with Abbott’s relentless “bomb them” belligerence – that Paris demands a political solution: throughout, you sense the cool and true moral intelligence at the helm

      Why Malcolm Turnbull will be our longest-serving PM since Robert Menzies

      I wonder how she feels about her idol now?

  19. Bloody Brissenden!

    jaycee@jaycee ‏@trulyjaycee now

    Yeah, right! A lot of background research when @abcnews questions ALP. minister,but only a Dorothy Dixer + yards of waffle for a LNP. Min’.

    • The moment that Fran on RN made it into the “Do Not Listen” file was just that situation. Before the last election she had a series travelling around the country interviewing candidates in “crucial” seats. Up in Queensland somewhere for the Labor MP she did the usual but but but butting in. For her LNP candidate ? Opened up with intro then “So why did you decided to enter politics ?” , followed by polite silence as the candidate told their ‘log cabin’ , ‘Just So’ story. that was the straw that broke this camel’s back.

  20. At about the turn of the century when the internet started to hit papers many were forced to cut staff Rupes pretty much handed over the opinion/editorial pages to the IPA and CIS , it was wall to wall . Cheaper than journos and 100% reliable when it came to pumping out his poison.

    Stopped buying the GG after 20 years of getting it 6 days a week. It was , read a headline, read who wrote it , if you saw IPA or CIS, turn page as no matter the topic you knew exactly what would be written. The same shite with the same set of people to “blame” and the same set of “solutions” . Ideologues-R-Us.

    • I stopped buying The Oz around 1974.

      I have not bought any newspaper for at least 20 years. The internet has been my news source.

  21. Disturbing reports from Nauru.

    Since 23 March those interned on Nauru have been holding a protest against their detention. For some it has been 1000 days, without any determination of their refugee status.

    Locked gates and erected fences contain Nauru asylum seeker protests
    Justice minister defends refugee determination system as ‘world class’ after eight days of protests by people held in camp.

    This explains events up until yesterday –
    Protests escalate on Nauru

    Border Force agreed to send a letter written by the children to Canberra outlining their concerns. In particular the letter highlights that some people who were on the same boat as others who arrived after 19 July 2013 have been allowed to make protection applications and will be resettled in Australia.

    The letter demands that they be treated the same as the people who were allowed to stay in Australia even though they arrived after 19 July 2013

    This is what happened next.

  22. I notice Their ABC refers to ‘transferees’ rather than ‘detainees’. The weaseliest of weasel words.

  23. The cross-bench senators want a wider investigation into corruptionn. What happens if Labor successfully moves a no debate motion on the ABCC mess? Will Turnbull go ahead with his DD threat or – more likely – will he wriggle out of it?

    Pressure on Turnbull to expand corruption powers beyond construction

    Senator David Leyonhjelm said he expected the IR bills to fail and if Labor moved a motion to adjourn the Senate and not even debate the bills, most of the crossbench would support it.

    “There’s no point hanging around if the end result is obvious,” he said.

    “Malcolm Turnbull has shown little interest in the ABCC bill beyond using it as a stick to beat Labor and the crossbench. I have never spoken a word to him about it.”

  24. On Newspoll showing various preferences for Liberal leader. The figures themselves are not what are significant. What is significant is that such a poll would suddenly appear at all, and moreover in the leadup to a federal election.

    We know that Cori Bernardi has floated the idea of a new party. We know that Abbott is undermining Turnbull’s leadership. Now this poll springs up, as though on cue.

    It may be, at the moment, just a malicious pushing by the media of underlying tensions. Building substance out of rumour. That is what the media do.

    But it’s also the fact that insubstantial rumours can take a life of their own and become substantial, self-fulfilling outcomes.

    Let us sit back and watch this one take shape. And pass the popcorn.

  25. Since when, Poodle, did you and your lot want to be held accountable?

    Labor has written to the government insisting that the lower house should sit for a full week, including question time, when parliament is recalled on 18 April.

    The manager of opposition business, Tony Burke, made the call on Wednesday in a letter to leader of the House of Representatives, Christopher Pyne.

    Burke questioned why reports said the prime minister, Malcolm Turnbull, only intends to sit for part of the week, despite Pyne saying “we’re the last people who want to avoid question time”.

  26. Leone,

    The creep baird is just trying to help an old maaaaate by making sure Whyalla is wiped off the map.

Comments are closed.