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Richo lands one on Turnbull’s chin

Richo lands one on Turnbull’s chin

Evermore the Labor stalwart Graham Richardson nails the foolishness of the prime minister with a left jab. This blog has always contended that Malcolm Turnbull has a  political tin-ear and the faecal touch. His 58 highly paid suckholes employed to advise must also be tone deaf. Or is it fear of correcting the egotistical one and being sacked?

Word has it that Malcolm Turnbull did a little boxing in his younger days. He must have had a lousy coach, given his propensity to lead with his chin. For a man with such a high IQ it is tragic that his political judgment is so poor. I picked up the newspapers yesterday to see on the front pages that the Prime Minister was considering holding a parliamentary inquiry into the Emma Husar affair.

Source: News Corp

Turnbull reveals his poor political judgment yet again

Could this be the same Prime Minister who fought tooth and nail against any form of inquiry into the banks? This would be a real scandal if it ever happened.

We would see the tawdry, unseemly side of politics at its worst if a lame exercise such as this were to take place just to find out when Bill Shorten knew.

It would not matter a damn when he knew, because some form of due process had to be followed. When I was Labor Party secretary in NSW — I left that job in March 1983 — I could have disendorsed Husar after I had seen the press reports and made a few phone calls. The present general secretary, Kaila Murnain, does not have that option. In this era you can’t disendorse an elected MP without an ­inquiry that protects procedural fairness for the accusers and the accused. This is not a process the Opposition Leader could have stopped. It had to happen.

All the PM did by floating this stupid idea was prove how desperate he and his government now are. This obsession with sullying Shorten’s name was such a massive failure that you would be entitled to believe the Coalition would try something different, indeed something radical, like coming up with winning policies. There is not much point in being a one-trick pony when the trick isn’t working.

Moreover, the PM will have to deal with his own developing scandal. The $444 million given to the Great Barrier Reef Foundation without tender and without any consultation with the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority is arguably the worst piece of public administration I have seen in more than four decades of close observation. It is right up there with the home insulation scheme, which could at least in part be excused by the sudden emergence of the global financial crisis in 2008. There is no crisis excuse, nor indeed any excuse, for this outrage, which appears to be a captain’s call.

The foundation employs only a handful of people and is spectacularly ill-equipped to manage the huge task handed to it. What is so galling for me is the arrogance of the business heavyweights in charge of the foundation. They have been approached to attend the relevant Senate estimates committee again and again, because they are too busy or overseas. The Senate needs to subpoena these people quickly and grill them over the process by which they could be allowed to walk away with so many taxpayer dollars. Josh Frydenberg, one of the best ministers in the Turnbull government, has struggled to answer questions on the topic, largely because he is not guilty of this scandalous use of our money. Sooner or later, the Prime Minister will have to answer detailed questions on this.

Once again, the Prime Minister has left no back door he could sneak through to escape this one. He is caught coming and going. If he walks away from his error and takes the money off the foundation, he looks awful. If he bats on with his original stupid decision, he will look dodgy as well as dumb.

When did he miss the lesson about how you can’t throw half a billion dollars at these people without a tender? He hasn’t even a fig leaf’s cover on this one, and next week’s question time will be worth watching.

On Wednesday night I interviewed Tony Abbott on Sky News. The gulf between Abbott and Turnbull is wide and getting wider.

Abbott knows how to communicate a simple message. One of the more telling points in the interview was what he didn’t say. He is truly excellent at getting the rest of us to fill in the gaps.

After I suggested that One Nation had hurt the Liberal Party so badly in Longman by knocking 10 per cent off the top of its primary vote and giving many of those voters a chance to give their preferences to Labor, he replied that many decent people voted for Pauline Hanson and no good would be done by attacking them. He then struck a real blow. He said that in the early days of Hanson, John Howard had seen her off the stage as an important player by producing the right policy mix from a good centre-right government.

Without a syllable of criticism of Turnbull, his comparison of today’s government as against the Howard government was as obvious as it was chilling.

He also touched on population policy. Again harking back to the halcyon days of the Howard government, he suggested returning to the level of immigration that was applied then.

If the PM is too proud to take advice from Abbott on this, he really is a mug. The Liberal base wants reductions in immigration, as does the mob. It is a policy I can’t see Labor adopting, and it would be a big winner in an election.

Abbott has clearly seen the error of his ways since he was PM. If ever he got another go, he just might nail it.

{ 25 comments… add one }
  • Popular Front 10/08/2018, 6:39 am

    My dear old Dad loathed Turnbull. He said that as a well-educated former barrister Turnbull was the most inarticulate berk he’d ever seen in politics, a true egomaniac who believes he’s the smartest man in ANY room he’s in. I shared that view and still do. To me Turnbull has had one big victory in his life, tying the British Cabinet Secretary in knots during the ‘Spycatcher’ trial and he’s been trading off that ever since. The GBR funding rort – for rort it surely is – may just be the catalyst to blast this clown out of office.

    • Botswana O'Hooligan 10/08/2018, 7:58 am

      Trouble is PF that we thought all sorts of things would bring the bastard undone and they haven’t mainly because he has a coterie of like minded fools in his six O’clock backing him. The ballot box is the only way but it will bring all we conservatives undone too.

    • Lorraine 10/08/2018, 8:33 am

      blast Malcolm out of office, when do you think he may just think he made a major gaffe. Which poor fool will replace him, not the Stick, we would be just as badly done by. He will ride this as he has he has done so far. many tin ear moments for the Malcolm just in a days thoughfulness

    • TommyGun 10/08/2018, 2:44 pm

      I’d like to think so, too, PF.
      But Turnbull seems to be coated in teflon; nothing sticks to the bastard!
      He’s made poor decisions before that would have brought anyon else undone and he’s still hanging on.
      I fear we will be stuck with him until the next election.

      • Popular Front 10/08/2018, 3:10 pm

        Folks I have a positive feeling about this GBRF rort. There are a lot of awkward questions now being asked leaving Turnbull no wriggle room. To ‘gift’ nearly half a BILLION dollars with no governmental oversight is corruption writ large as many people are seeing it.

  • Cliff 10/08/2018, 6:42 am

    Richo is following his own dictum here, if made incredibly easy by his target – “Whatever it takes.”

  • Xword 10/08/2018, 6:50 am

    The saddest part of the whole yarn is that this statement is probably true: “Josh Frydenberg, one of the best ministers in the Turnbull Government …”

    • Aktosplatzu 10/08/2018, 10:26 am

      Frydenberg is a polished,smooth talking,patronising spin doctor defending the Paris Agreement.

  • Ian 10/08/2018, 7:14 am

    On present form, the libs would be lucky to secure 10% of the primary vote. Due to one man.
    Not a bad achievement, if your aim is to destroy the libs so that you can get a republic.
    Maybe the people need to raise a policy that no previous PM can ever be the president, just to see if Turnbull winces.

    • ibbit 10/08/2018, 9:00 am

      Would this egotistical man want to go down in history as the man who destroyed the party of Menzies and all it stands for?
      Would he really settle for president of the republic of Australia if he could secure the job of being kingpin of the globalised world?
      Alan Jones has posited the idea that Turnbull would be happy to see several million stock die because it would save him the trouble of forcing farmers to shoot their stock so he could keep his lunatic policy of meeting Paris. He could well be right. Turnbull is capable of anything as his just being PM says loud and clear.
      Richo may well be fighting the Labor side – but who cares? Anything that can be done to get Turnbull out is welcome in my book. As well as Turnbull the mob of stinking rotters who put him there all need to lose their seats come the election and probably will. If damage is done to Bishop, Fraudenberg and co, then that would all be to the good.

      • Joe Blogs 10/08/2018, 10:00 am

        ib, seems to Blogs that Trumble needs to destroy the joint so he can re-build it in his own image. Duzzen matter that the rest of us don’t get it; there’s a higher purpose to be served and he sees it clearly from his exalted perch in his exclusive firmament.

    • Aktosplatz 10/08/2018, 8:55 pm

      Not just one man at all, there were 54 others. We must never forget those rats as well.

  • Cliff 10/08/2018, 7:27 am

    If some ## Yank doesn’t steal the book title first with a ‘tell all’ tome on Obummer, I can see a book released here a decade from now titled ‘The Real Life Manchurian Candidate’.

    Sub-titled ‘How the First President of the Republic of Australia Malcolm Turnbull Infiltrated and Destroyed the Liberal Party’.

  • Henry 10/08/2018, 7:52 am

    Richardson makes a good point when he says The Great Barrier Reef Affair is a counter-punch to the Pink Batts Affair.

  • Margaret 10/08/2018, 8:08 am

    Turnbull has an inflated sense of his own importance and ability. Turnbull should never have been Prime Minister. Australia would have been a much better country if Abbott had been PM all this time.

  • Jack Richards 10/08/2018, 8:08 am

    What a palooka he is. He just reels from one disaster to the next like a punch-drunk old pug.

    • TommyGun 10/08/2018, 2:47 pm

      But he never seems to go to the canvas, Jack.
      That’s what’s so bloody frustrating!
      As someone said; he’s being protected by all the suckholes around him.

  • DT 10/08/2018, 8:40 am

    Come down, come down from your Ivory Tower Chairman Mal.

  • Alan Pemberton 10/08/2018, 9:58 am

    Very disappointed Barnaby Joyce did not step up after the 2016 election and put a headlock on Turnbull, even to the point of getting him replaced, to preserve the Coalition.

    I actually thought he would, but instead, became one of his Yes-Men.

  • flav1945 10/08/2018, 10:29 am

    For God’s sake, you ALL sound like a mob of bleating losers and gleefully accepting that
    Labor/Greens will be inflicting at least a 6 year term of corrupt mismanagement on our
    country.
    Get off your bums and send emails to your local LNP member expressing the need for
    Turnbull and his Labor-Lite cabal to be removed IMMEDIATELY. Suggest to your member that he/she lobbies strongly in the party room for a new leader which could
    be any one of Abbott, Porter, Dutton or Hunt. Stress your view (and countless others)
    that this is THE only way to deter a Labor/Greens calamity next year.

    • DT 10/08/2018, 11:06 am

      I have done it many times including sending them information on various subjects.

    • TommyGun 10/08/2018, 2:48 pm

      Done it all before, flav.
      No answers; no effect.
      They just ignore the bad news.

      • flav1945 10/08/2018, 3:27 pm

        Chris Crewther actually has responded to my plea. Bit wishy-washy though saying
        just how united the party room were in backing Turnbull policies and highlighting
        the good policies they’ve introduced over the past 2 years. Sadly, there appeared
        to be absolutely no support by Crewther for TA. I just reckon that if enough of us
        keep hammering their LNP members then maybe, just maybe they might see the light and get rid of MT ?? I live in hope.

    • ibbit 10/08/2018, 4:04 pm

      I have hounded, at times, the useless member of my seat only to have everything ignored and get a lecture on what brilliance Turnbull has and that we should be grateful. No brains or help there.

  • nev 10/08/2018, 10:40 am

    I have little time for Richardson he is the epitome of the labor and union thug. But that doesn’t mean everything he says is wrong in this article I’ll give him his due, he is dead on.
    Richo you also said when you interviewed Abbott on Sky that you realized how wide the gulf between Abbott and Turnbull is and how quickly it is widening. You did well to note that Abbott has learnt a thing or two however you may also have missed this point. Abbott is not moving, it is the Manchurian Turnbull who is widening the gap as he fumbles, slips and slides towards the abyss of no return. May be “luscious” Lucy has too much influence, maybe they’re just peas in a pod.
    You noted too how able Abbott is at communicating a simple message often by what he didn’t say leaving us to fill in the gaps. Looks like he used you for the task today Richo…..Whatever it takes, thanks, you did it well.

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