The anti-corruption commission is one step closer to reality – the Labor government tabled its Bill in Parliament this week, despite all the claims from conservative media that the Prime Minister, Anthony Albanese, was stonewalling the commission and using excuses, such as the death of the British monarch, to withhold the legislation and stymie the commission.
It can never be underestimated how far the mainstream media will go to de-legitimise this Labor government, with the Australian Financial Review fabricating a story where, supposedly, Albanese was solely negotiating with the Opposition Leader, Peter Dutton, on the anti-corruption commission, and sidelining the Australian Greens and the teal independents. And this was going to result in a watered-down anti-corruption commission, and cause trouble for the Labor government in trying to get its legislation passed by the Australian Greens in the Senate.
The only problem: it wasn’t true. The crossbench seems to be very satisfied with the legislation, although there are sticking points on public hearings, protections for whistle blowers and a guarantee of funding.
Legacy media has had a habit of supporting conservative parties, even when there’s an inept leader such as Dutton. He’s currently going through a makeover, and being rebranded into a leader who’s more palatable to the public. While we can never underestimate any political leader – John Howard was told he could never be Prime Minister, until he became Prime Minister. Tony Abbott too. And Scott Morrison. Donald Trump was an idiot who could never become President of the United States, until he became the President of the United States.
Any politician can become the leader of a country, given the right circumstances, and with the incessant support of the media. Which is currently happening with Peter Dutton. With any political issue; Dutton is the go-to for the media. Problems with an Optus hack? What does Peter Dutton think about this? Cost of living issues? Let’s speak to Dutton, he knows the answer. Petrol excises? Dutton, he’s out go-to man, he speaks the truth.
But polishing a turd has its limits – although the popular science show MythBusters once did show that it’s definitely possible to “polish the turd”, it’s different for Dutton. He’s been around for far too long and has accumulated such a negative public image, that it’s hard to see how this could change. But aside from this, where’s the gravitas? What’s the intellectual and political substance behind the man? Where’s the creative curiosity?
There isn’t any, and this is the failing of Dutton: it’s all anti-union; anti-immigration; anti-Labor; anti-intellectual, littered with the racist undertones. And it’s not a recipe for success in contemporary Australia, which discarded this type of thinking at the recent federal election in May 2022.
Senator Jacqui Lambie has issued an apology – of sorts – for voting for Stage 3 tax cuts all the way back in July 2019. She’s made the claim that the economy can’t support it – which is absolutely true – but why has she waited until now? The economy has been tanking and was in an incredible dire position in 2019 when she voted for these tax cuts – as it is in 2022.
Lambie is an opportunist – which is what you’d expect from a Senator, trying to get the best deal for their state; in this case, Tasmania. And Tasmania had a $157 million debt waived for her support for the Morrison’s government Stage 3 tax cuts legislation. But she’s never owned up to what the deal was for repealing the Medivac legislation – pushing that idea that people just had to trust her – even though she claimed in 2021 that there was no deal and nothing was negotiated.
Lambie can’t be trusted on these key issues but it’s also unclear what she is trying to achieve with these latest ramblings. It’s a mystery.
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