Tony Abbott is a modest man…and forever on the spin cycle


In September last year Paul Kelly, Editor at large at The Australian gushed effusively, and in hindsight disastrously over-optimistically, concerning the Big Picture of Tony Abbott, Prime Minister.

Quoting Abbott himself (no doubt sourced from ‘the usual’, a Liberal Party Press Release), Kelly effused:

TONY Abbott has signalled a new style of Coalition government based on collaborative ties with business, a clearer set of priorities, less frenetic, more predictable and geared to stability, not fashion.

Kelly also unambiguously  predicted:

Announcing his ministry, Abbott said the people wanted a government that was “upfront, speaks plainly and does the essentials well”.

Decoded, this means cutting the spin, delivering his promises and getting the economy ticking in the teeth of rising unemployment.

Kelly then followed with a character evaluation of The Great Man himself.  According to Paul Kelly, Abbott:

  • Is a modest man but he must deliver more than modest government.  This one has at least been successful, there has been no modesty about this government whatsoever.
  • He hates embroidery, loathes long ministerial titles.. Gosh, it’s no wonder the msm ridiculed Julia for knitting when Abbott hates embroidery!  Yes indeed, Abbott’s loathing for long titles (doubt no due to a limited attention span), has cost the government (aka us) millions in now defunct stationery.
  • He won’t be talking to the media unless he has something to say..  Hence the Cone of Silence which quickly enveloped this government, Abbott clearly has nothing to say.
  • (Is a) conservative warrior and the anarchic modern media with its thirst for drama and obsession with gesture. So it’s *us* the citizen journalists with the thirst for drama and the obsession with gesture? … ahh, the nobility of it all, the warrior versus anarchy..that’s *us* again.
  • He believes the public is tired of Labor’s egoism, boasting and endless self-obsessions.
  • Abbott said the people wanted a government that was “upfront, speaks plainly and does the essentials well”.
  • Abbott should have promoted another woman into his cabinet where Julie Bishop is the only female in 19 ministers. A very slight rap on the knuckles, but hell, what do you expect, Abbott is a man’s man and this just reveals “a stubborness to do things his way”.
  • The heart of this government is its economic team. Abbott is convinced Labor stumbled because of its obstructionist attitude towards big, small and resources-based business.
  • This is an economic team that is close to Abbott. Its values are pro-market, deregulatory reform and cutting Labor’s red and green tape.

One of the main gripes from the alternative media to mainstream is the often complete lack of scrutiny of statements which emanate straight from the Liberal Party, now government.  Especially when in opposition, all one-liners, the trite phrases were treated as god’s own gospel.  Perhaps this is one of the mainstream media’s problems, that anyone with a computer and who knows how to “Google” can check claims emanating from the prime ministerial office.  Just because Peta Credlin says it, doesn’t make it so.  And just because one or several journalists from the mainstream media repeat the quote verbatim, does not make it so.

No wonder the frustration from the Australian public, no wonder paywalls are a capital F for fail.

Just for the fun of it, let’s just check a couple of Kelly’s statements, and let’s start with #7. Labor stumbled because of its obstructionist attitude towards big, small and resources-based business.

Then why as per the Reserve Bank and Remarks to the Bloomberg Australia Economic Summit 2013 Sydney – 10 April 2013:

Business investment in Australia is higher now as a share of GDP than at any other time over the past 60 years

Why the anomaly, the difference between the factual evidence and the illusion?  Why lie?  Surely senior journalists cannot be ignorant of factual evidence?  If Labor was so obstructionist then why the outstanding results?

The Murdoch media looms large where very little uncensored information penetrates out onto the Australian public, and certainly very little positive which might be contra to the current line which the spin maesters have deemed the *moment* to promote.

On all of the above, one can go no further for the ever insightful Ross Gittins who commences his article of today with:

The world of politicians gets deeper and deeper into spin, and so far no production of the Abbott government rates higher on the spin cycle than last week’s Repeal Day.

This statement from Gittins deserves capitals, and bold:

But the most objectionable feature of the whole red tape Repeal Day charade is the way it has been used as cover for rent-seeking by the Coalition’s industry backers.

It’s an open secret the protections for investors provided by the Future of Financial Advice legislation are being watered down at the behest of the big banks, which want to be freer to incentivise unqualified sales people to sell inappropriate investment products to mug punters.

With the comparison being the Charities Commission abolished, “….despite the objections of most charities, presumably because the Catholic Church doesn’t like it”.

Watch this space for further developments on what the Church likes and doesn’t like, what the Big Banks like and do not like.

Then there is #6.  Abbott said, the people wanted a government that was “upfront, speaks plainly and does the essentials well“.  Spin, spin and spin.