On despising Turnbull and the Opposition again…

24 Oct

Truly the situation is beyond mere mortals such as I confess I am, not only here but in the world at large. I mean we have had Greenspan in the USA admitting that the whole system is flawed — a late discovery from one who followed, so Jon Taplin has informed us, the batty beliefs of Ayn Rand in the past. That’s a bit like taking your science from Paracelsus isn’t it?

I do commend Jim Belshaw’s post on these matters: Ken Henry, Malcolm Turnbull and the Australian Government’s bank deposit guarantee – issues arising. Jim is better informed than I, and not uncritical of the Rudd government’s style. However, on one key matter Jim notes:

My point on media and opposition comments about problems with the guarantee package probably seems obscure. My point is that for a period those comments actually encouraged a run on other financial institutions.

Does this mean that the comments should not have been made? I suspect that, so far as the opposition is concerned, the answer is yes.

Now we have an ongoing development: Swan’s Centrelink suggestion criticised. That does sound as if Wayne has been foot-in-mouth, but I heartily agree with a comment on that ABC story:

Both parties are right on the issue, but both are wrong at the same time. A middle ground needs to be found soon and both sides need to eat some humble pie so that this issue doesn’t get any worse. Rudd was wrong in not being forthright about the advice, or not seeking enough advice. Although he did need to act soon to prevent a lot of the smaller players from going under sue to a run on the banks….doubt Banks like Suncorp or BOD would have lasted more than a few more weeks if they kept going the way they had. Turnbull should have brought this issue to a head before they agreed to pass it. Although I can appreciate they ran the risk of delaying something that needed to be put in and I think they did ask these questions and got no answers/belittled…

And with this:

I think Turnbull must hose down his rhetoric. He doesn’t seem to be doing anything but make a bad situation worse.

Amen to that!

It is a shame that we play politics the way we do, especially given such a serious situation. If only the Opposition could get over big-noting and point-scoring, and also if only the government did not feel they have to react accordingly and had been a bit better organised up front… Then perhaps we would have had the genuine criticisms that have emerged amidst the muck flying around addressed. Can we ever have a system where an Opposition party can couch its critique of such matters in a respectful manner? Can we ever have both sides agreeing on the basic action to be taken and genuinely scrutinising that action for flaws and dangers, and then agreeing on it?

Or am I dreaming?

I am so over the resemblance between our parliamentary discussions and the worst aspects of school-age debating… I can’t help feeling they are letting the country down by taking that approach, and this is, repeat, this really is serious stuff.


You know something? (As Kevin Rudd might say.) I am beginning seriously to think it’s time they turned off the TV cameras in Parliament. The bastards perform to them… I really think this has contributed to our parliamentary histrionics over recent years… Let’s just hear them droning on on radio, or read Hansard.

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Posted by on October 24, 2008 in Australia, Political, politics


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