Malcolm Turnbull, Plague Bacillus
The PM and his Black Handers hijacked the Liberal Party, and in this shameful endeavour they have had far too much success. Barely recognisable as the party of Menzies and Howard, its flight from principle can end only in electoral doom
Niki Savva is apparently unaware of how sadly comic her obsessive Turnbull sycophancy and Abbott-hatred have come to look, repeated monotonously in The Australian. One of the more recent effusions by this spouse of a prime ministerial staffer is headed Turnbull is flawed but only he can win for the Libs and breaks new ground in the reversal of fact. She even managed to dredge up that greatest beat-up of all time, Abbott’s “knighting” of Prince Philip, which unlike Turnbull’s energy policies, cost the community nothing. It simply brought Australia into line with other Commonwealth countries. The remainder of her article is long on abuse but short on facts, plus religious statements of faith such as that under Turnbull the next election is “eminently winnable.”
If the Liberals go into the next election under Turnbull, I believe that they will stand not only to lose but to lose on a scale that will make their recent wipe-out in Western Australia look like the proverbial vicarage tea-party. Forget about merely losing government for a term, let alone any chance of retaining it: the Liberals, as the standard-bearers of Australia’s liberal-conservative tradition, under a continuing Turnbull leadership, stand a good chance of disappearing from history, or perhaps, like the British Liberals, dragging out existence as a sort of ghost of a party. A conservative party under a man with no belief in conservatism is simply not viable.
They just might be saved in the short term by the electorate’s quite justified dread of Shorten’s ruinous 19th century socialism and generally dubious connections, but that’s not the way to bet. And remember 1982, when Labor in a last-minute ambush produced Bob Hawke as leader and trounced Fraser?
The closest thing to values that Turnbull has evoked has been the near-meaningless mantra of “Jobs and Growth.” There is no sign that he comprehends there are things of more transcendent importance. He has given no sign of any awareness of warnings like that given by Italian writer Giulio Meotti:
Without the courage to insist on safeguarding our values, and passing our inheritance on to our children, we Europeans will simply disappear — as many groups have before. With us, however, will disappear the most enlightened civilization the world has ever known.
It is conservatives who take values seriously, who see society not as a machine to be re-jigged but as an old growth to be trimmed and tended with care, the traditions, conventions and values of the past to be take seriously (as Chesterton said, “the democracy of the dead”). They will find precious few signs of such attitudes in what the ABC/Fairfax axis calls the “moderate” – ie Turnbullite – wing of the Liberal Party today.
As Whitlam, Fraser and others discovered to their cost, one thing the Australian electorate dislikes is arrogance. Voters are hardly likely to flock to a prime minister who is arrogance personified — and whose arrogance seems, moreover, to be quite without justification.
Turnbull has allowed the Australian government to pay, on an annual basis, $43.8 million to the Palestinian Authority and $17.6 million to the United Nations Relief and Works Agency. The PA is not only a vicious, corrupt dictatorship but both are directly connected to anti-Jewish terrorism and murder. About half the PA’s budget goes to paying terrorists and their families. The fact Turnbull and Bishop have made simultaneous warm overtures to Israel bespeaks either ignorant confusion of an attempt to run with the hare and hunt with the hounds. This is shocking and indefensible.
The Liberal powerbrokers, if there are any left, cannot depend on conservatives voting for them because, as Mark Textor shamefully and inaccurately opined, they have nowhere else to go. They do. This time there are a number of conservative, patriotic or generally-right-of-centre alternatives. None can be seen as achieving power in its own right but they do not need to. There are none, so far, I agree with completely, and I have deep disagreements with some, but compared to Turnbull’s Black Hand gang, they offer, so far, an awareness of honour and courage. It must take some bravery to be Pauline Hanson.
I write this with no pleasure. My family are rusted-on Liberals. My father and maternal grandfather were Liberal MPs and founding members of the party (my father being briefly Premier of WA). I have twice been a Liberal State candidate and have worked for the party in various capacities since I was teenager. With my children, that makes four generations.
The salient point is that many of the conservatives who make up a large part of the Liberal Party are utterly disgusted by Turnbull’s betrayal of Abbott in particular and betrayal of Liberal principles in general. And they have maintained their rage. The Turnbull regime amounts to nothing less than an attempt to hi-jack the Liberal Party, and in this endeavour it has had far too much success. It has already made it in some places unrecognisable as the party of Menzies and Howard.