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Nov 11, 2009

Opposition Leadership woes; climate change Chamberlains.

Cartoon by Nicholson.

I have had an extremely low opinion of the leader of the Australian opposition pretty much ever since he was elected to that position, however I have only just begun to realize that he is not on his own in his incompetence. Indeed he has ably surrounded himself with a front bench of hopeless cases whose main aim is to protect their own positions at the expense of the electorate.

I had not understood just how bad they were until Four Corners ran a program, “Malcolm and the Malcontents,” with Sarah Ferguson as compare. The link is to a transcript of the show, which highlights the divisions between the principled members of the opposition and those on the frontbench who aim to avoid an election at any cost.

Take this exchange for example:

SARAH FERGUSON: Like Britain's resurgent conservative opposition leader, Malcolm Turnbull is convinced you can be conservative and green - out with old guard, and in with the new.

IAN MACFARLANE, MP, SHADOW MINISTER FOR RESOURCES: Well Malcolm's shown, wants to show that we are a modern Party, it's part of the change, the evolution from John Howard to Malcolm Turnbull.
Just what the hell does supporting a massive tax hike that will disrupt Australian life and competitiveness have to do with modernity? It sounds a lot like we are being asked to become ecstatic about “Hope and Change!” The issue at hand is not the image of the Liberal Party, or Turnbulls perception of it but a stupid attempt by Rudd to big name himself on the international stage on an issue we cannot possibly have any beneficial impact on even if carbon emissions were a problem. Then we have this:
MALCOLM TURNBULL: If there was an election held in the near future and the polls remained where they were, we obviously wouldn't win. …..

SARAH FERGUSON: His closest allies supported his analysis then and do so now.

IAN MACFARLANE: Electorally difficult would be an understatement, I mean a double dissolution on this issue would be very hard for us in terms of an election to fight.
The whole crux of the matter from the Liberal front bench perspective is not what will benefit the Australian population as a whole, but protecting their seats in parliament. This is ably pointed out in the following exchange by some of the dissenters:
BILL HASSELL, FMR LEADER OF WA STATE LIBERAL PARTY: I never thought I'd live long enough to hear a federal leader suggest that he didn't want to take a stance because there might be an election.

NICK MINCHIN, SENATOR, LEADER OF THE OPPOSITION IN THE SENATE:: I've never felt that we should be constrained in examining this matter by fear of double dissolutions. …

SARAH FERGUSON: The calls for unity fell on deaf ears, the back bench was becoming increasingly bolshie about the prospect of negotiations with the Government before Copenhagen.

JULIAN MCGAURAN: The Liberal Party did have a position but it got messed up by a whole lot of nervous nellies on the front bench I should add, who just believed you know we've got to avoid an election, a double dissolution. They had this fit in their head, they've mucked up the politics for us all. They've mucked up our chance. They've almost made it self-fulfilling and to speak about it publicly is nothing short of dumb, it's a folly.
I have serious doubts that those members who are negotiating with Rudd in the hope of “Peace in our time” have any real belief in anything other than their own interests. It is unlikely from what I have seen so far that these people have addressed the issue from any other perspective other than what is to their own benefit, certainly the only issue they have raised is their own future.

If the warmist wing of the Liberal Party, attempt to dismiss the interests of Australia in order to secure their own future the party will suffer far worse consequences from doing so. By allowing Rudd to arrive in Copenhagen waving the Ration-N-Tax Scheme bill like some sort of Neville Chamberlain returning from his compromise with Hitler, Australians are being set up for economic disaster.

By compromising with Labor they are setting themselves up to take the blame.

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