Let’s hope that Ellis is right.
It might well be that Tony Abbott’s last, or latest, ‘Duke of Edinburgh Moment’ was his Guildhall Thatcher speech on Monday. In a Europe beset by images of a million desperate, grieving, storm-tossed refugees, he said they should have been sent back to countries where they would have been bombed to bits, or beheaded, or crucified, or forcibly married to monsters, sent back at gunpoint to such places; trust me, it’s the only way.
By doing this he not only showed he was an idiot, but he brought to mind those images — of mothers and children on beaches and railway stations, and trudging the superhighways of Hungary, trying to make some sense of their miserable fate in a hostile world.
And by saying it he gave emphasis to our persecuted refugees, and the ill-treatment by our navy of innocents they kidnapped on their way to New Zealand, and paid people smugglers to deliver, illegally, to Indonesia, or so Amnesty alleges. And to Adyan, pregnant, maddened and messed about by Dutton who for ten weeks has refused her an abortion though her pregnancy was caused by rape. These images from Europe emphasise these recent matters. And Abbott’s fool speech emphasised the faces of the hungry, needy children and women and young men on the high roads of Europe, looking for a life.
And now…well, now it seems the refugee genie is out of the bottle; and we hear today of kids on TPVs wanting to go to university and being denied HECS; of adults on TPVs being forbidden paid work though they may be here for twenty more years; of the enslavement of foreign students at work in the 7/11s and chicken factories.
And so it is, and so has lately begun, all of a sudden, The Year of the Refugee; and Abbott’s proudest boast, that he stopped them coming here, looks more and more crazed and malign in the present context, this heroic, awful year of fleeing tribes and life-shattered, struggling multitudes.
It shows us how evil his administration was.
Can Turnbull keep Dutton any longer? Of course he can’t; but his party’s Right (anti-abortion, pro-torture) will force him to. And he will look weaker and weaker and more and more in the thrall of stupid, sadistic, merciless incompetents.
And so it will go.
(First published by Independent Australia)
Four events this week have done damage to Malcolm Turnbull, undermined his authority and made him look, at the very least, unleaderly.
One was Abbott advocating terrorism in Guildhall, for which Malcolm did not reprove him.
Abbott said refugees should be forced back at gunpoint into countries where they might be executed. Though this can be seen to be a breach of Australian law and to attract a sentence of twenty-five years, the Prime Minister, a trained lawyer, merely gave a rueful smile and sadly allowed that Abbott, a mere backbencher, could now say what he liked.
He seemed weak in this, his response to the man he overthrew, now a terrorism advocate, unrepentant, unpunished and gone rogue.
Another event was the Amnesty International finding that a boat on the way to New Zealand was not in distress when Australian military personnel boarded it, kidnapped the people on it, treated them badly in airless cabins, denying one woman her asthma puffer, and paid people smugglers to dump them on a reef off Indonesia, which did not want to take them in.
This means the responsible Minister, Peter Dutton, was himself a people smuggler and in breach of international law, and liable under current Australian law to eight or fifteen years in gaol.
A third event involved Peter Dutton also. It turned out he had refused an abortion to a raped woman and sent her back to a very small country where her rapist, unpunished, could get at her again, and was now, on second thoughts, letting her back into Australia for a termination in her sixteenth or seventeenth week, a sizeable trauma that might endanger her mental health, before sending her back into her rapist’s vicinity again.
Another was a Minister, Fiona Nash, saying on Q&A that farmers should be able to refuse coal seam gas mining companies access to their land. This was after a farmer, George Bender, had suicided after fighting, vainly, the mining moguls for seven years. Malcolm did not fire her, nor make any comment on what she said.
On top of this, he will soon be facing allegations that his Treasurer, Scott Morrison, when Minister for Immigration, assisted the escape of one at least of the murderers of Reza Barati, and furthermore failed to seek punishment for the deeds of twenty other violent men who with bullets, knives, pipes and rocks injured sixty other young men on Manus Island, after having himself provoked them face to face with the cruel, implacable news that they would ‘never, never’ live in Australia, even those who have relatives here.
This will be on top of his neglect of children raped on his watch which makes him, as their sometime legal guardian, guilty of child abuse himself.
Will Malcolm sack him, or stand him down, when these investigations begin? Of course he won’t.
Has he shown himself in these matters to be a weakling? Or, worse, a collaborator in major crime? It certainly looks like both possibilities are now in play.
It is likely, though not certain, that our new Prime Minister’s popularity has peaked, and one or other of the above events will become his latterday ‘Godwin Grech Moment’, and his inevitable plummeting begin.
TO READ MORE ARTICLES from BOB ELLIS click on this link = http://www.ellistabletalk.com/
More links about policy, Nauru and refugees:
http://progressiveconversation.com/2015/11/01/nauru-what-do-bird-poop-the-russian-mafia-and-australias-refugee-policy-have-in-common/ – Short answer: Nauru.
https://undercoverinfo.wordpress.com/2015/10/30/the-cosy-dollars-relationship-between-gulags-lobbyists-and-australian-government/#more-3498 – There should be no business in abuse. This is what we’re fighting against in that regard.
https://undercoverinfo.wordpress.com/2015/10/29/un-demands-that-abyan-not-be-returned-to-nauru-amnesty-report-condemns-australia/ – We’ve treated Abyan horribly.