Wednesday, September 16, 2015

When Malcolm First Met Tony

Thus spake Tony Abbott's Suppository of Wisdom, Greg Sheridan, in today's Australian:

"History will be much kinder to the Abbott prime ministership than today's analysis would suggest. Some of his achievements - especially stopping the boats - could probably not have been done by any other prime minister. And they will continue to benefit Australia for many years to come. The crisis engulfing Europe would have engulfed Australia had Abbott not been prime minister. That is a massive, historic achievement." (Tony Abbott loyal to a fault: why Philip was knighted)

Sound familiar?

Here's Abbott's SOW on the bloke who blew Iraq away:

"George W. Bush may well be judged, ultimately, a great president, especially in the war on terror." (A good president for these terrible times, 14/9/06)

The meaner and uglier, the better Greg likes 'em, especially if they love bombing Arab countries.

If Greg hadn't been so busy talking up his old mate, he might've remembered writing this in his recently published memoir:

"Malcolm [Turnbull] first met Tony Abbott at the AUS conference in Melbourne in 1978, which Malcolm covered for The Bulletin. The two had a jovial conversation that was very much a two-way affair rather than an interview. In the conversation Malcolm described Tony's political style as 'exuberant' but in The Bulletin described it as 'boisterous'. Malcolm wrote about Tony that: 'While he can win support from students because of the shocking state of affairs in AUS, he cannot take the next step because of his conservative moral views.'" (When We Were Young & Foolish, 2015, p 306)

And doesn't that sound familiar?

Here's an extract from M'Lord Turnbull's 'Abbott's Gotta Go' speech of the 14th:

"We need a style of leadership that explains those challenges and opportunities... and how we seize the opportunities. A style of leadership that respects the people's intelligence, that explains these complex issues and then sets out the course of action we believe we should take and makes a case for it. We need advocacy not slogans. We need to respect the intelligence of the Australian people. Now if we continue with Mr Abbott as prime minister, it is clear enough what will happen. He will cease to be prime minister and he'll be succeeded by Mr Shorten."

But what does a style of leadership that respects the people's intelligence mean?

OK, OK, I think M'Lord Turnbull means something like this:

Bogan Slogan a la Abbott: Nope, nope, nope.  

Advocacy a la M'Lord Turnbull: No, no, no.

See the difference?  

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