Dedicated to the memory of Senator Kimberley Kitching.
The floods in northern NSW and Queensland are causing major political headaches for the Morrison government and, as the floodwaters flow back into the oceans, their ideological obsession with small government has been laid bare.
Communities expect governments to act when events occur that are beyond their control and beyond their abilities to repair. Otherwise, what is the point of government?
Are they not also made up from the people that live in these communities? Scott Morrison’s response has been haphazard, confused, illogical and, when it finally arrived, it was far too late.
And with an election around the corner, the federal government’s chances are receding as quickly as the northern waters.
Although current polls are indicated a change of government is in the air, Morrison has to continue what he has always been doing – announcing. A nuclear submarines base has been “announced” to be built in either Brisbane, Newcastle or Wollongong – areas where the Coalition needs to hold seats, or gain seats, if wants to have any chance of an election victory in May.
But these three locations are not even in the top five recommended by the Australian Defence Force, but why should this matter if there’s an election to be won? And for the most “transactional” Prime Minister has ever seen, this is all that matters: the public interest comes a distance last.
And what type of company does Peter Dutton keep? The Minister for Defence has some very peculiar relationships with a few Brisbane-based companies who, in turn, donate to the Liberal–National Party. It’s a stark reminder the Joh Bjelke-Petersen corruption of the 1970s and 1980s has never really disappeared: different faces, different characters, but the same old malfeasance. If only we had a federal anti-corruption commission that could look into these activities.
It was also International Women’s Day this week: it seems Morrison was too busy to make any announcements or statements about IWD, but after his performances in 2019 and 2021, it’s probably a good thing he kept quiet. Anything he says will remind the election about the incredibly low number of women in the Coalition – just 21 per cent – and who wants to be reminded of that?
And we might see another one-term government next week, with the South Australia Government facing a 5 per cent swing against it, and facing a loss of at least four seats. It’s a part of an international swing against the conservative regimes who want to see their role reduced, at a time when electorates are seeking more involvement of governments during an insecure and unpredictable time.
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