Theresa May’s Train Wreck

Now this may sound a little silly*, but if you think like Malcolm Turnbull and act like Malcolm Turnbull, then there’s a very good chance that you’ll end up like Malcolm Turnbull – and have a bad time.

Of all the strategic blunders made by Theresa May, her decision to hire Turnbull’s failed election campaign adviser to help run her campaign (with fellow ‘guru’ Sir Lynton Crosby) was arguably the most significant.

You know, the same adviser who said this during Turnbull’s 2016 campaign:

The qualitative evidence is they don’t matter,’’ Mr Textor said. “The sum of a more centrist approach outweighs any alleged marginal loss of so-called base voters.’’

Yes, that one.

Textor strikes again

For reasons not readily apparent, May agreed to implement the Textor-Turnbull election campaign system – a curious system under which the decision making prowess of a teenage girl running away from Jason Vorhees is employed on as many major campaign decisions as possible.

In its latest hit out, the Textor-Turnbull system included the following strokes of genius, coming straight out of the manual:

  • Give everyone plenty of time to see that implementing Brexit won’t be a walk in the park. Allow further time for doubts about the process to fester. Then, just before you can make any tangible progress, call a snap election THREE YEARS before your term expires based on… (wait for it) implementing Brexit! When the other side is more than happy to let you do this to the tune of a 522-13 parliamentary vote – despite the Fixed-term Parliaments Act 2011 – then you’ll know that you’re definitely on a winner.
  • Foist an inexplicably long election campaign on everyone (seven weeks). This way, you’ll have more time to make mistakes and annoy as many voters as possible.
  • Refuse to debate against one of the most hopeless debating opponents ever and let everyone else do so in your absence. Then, watch that opponent nail you on the point – which huge numbers of casual and swing voters will easily understand and relate to.
  • Follow up your refusal to debate by dribbling complete nonsense (see below). It’s important to demonstrate that you are out of touch and completely unaware that:
    • people love seeing a good fight on many levels and expect their leaders to fight for them;
    • people get seriously annoyed when deprived of a good fight and will always blame the person running from the fight; and
    • the head to head battle of ideas between leaders is one of the most important things in an election campaign and will be the only time countless casual and swing voters will ever pay attention to what you’re saying. Ever. (Think about that).

During the interview, a “Jeremy Corbyn from Islington” asked if Theresa May would appear in a live debate with him. She responded saying, “I don’t think people get much out of seeing politicians having a go at each other; I think people want to hear directly.” **

  • Keep refusing to be interviewed. Patiently wait until the full amount of political damage has been done. Then, and only then, change your mind.
  • Talk about, dither and terrify the elderly on social justice causes – because they don’t matter and there’s not enough of them to impact an election result:

May’s greatest mis-step was over social care. May wanted to introduce a system whereby care for the elderly would be paid for by the government selling their house after their death. Although the policy allowed for £100,000 ($128,500) to be kept for the person’s family, there was no cap on how much could be taken. If a house was worth £1m, for example, nine-tenths of that value could conceivably end up in the hands of the state rather than relatives.

The tragedy of Mrs May’s social care proposal was that it was the right policy based on the right premise: that those who can afford to pay for their care should do so. It was a bold argument to bring to a political campaign: it could have been defended. Yet it emerges that no one in the cabinet had any warning about this policy, so no one was prepared for it. Mrs May has learned the hard way that a party leader needs to work with front-bench colleagues, rather than a couple of trusted advisers. Her failure to widen her circle (or triangle) of trust is her biggest single weakness. The ‘dementia tax’ debacle was the direct result.

Senior Conservatives said that she had made “fundamental strategic errors” and said that her closest aides should be “banished” from Downing Street.

They complained that the campaign had been centred around a “cult of personality” and “central control”, adding: “It has completely blown up in our face”.

Now where have we seen all this attempted before?

One can only assume that under the Textor-Turnbull system, it’s also mandatory to keep doing the exact same thing over and over again until you get a different result.

Keep going guys, I’m sure you’ve got Einstein covered.

Corbyn – a very dangerous man

All the more staggering is how May could have allowed such a shameless anarchist like Jeremy Corbyn to come so close.

Former man of the left, Nick Cohen, illustrated very early on the danger posed by Corbyn – and the eerie ease with which he became Labour’s leader:

‘Jeremy Corbyn did not become Labour leader because his friends in the Socialist Workers party organised a Leninist coup. Nor did the £3 click-activist day-trippers hand him victory. He won with the hearty and freely given support of ‘decent’ Labour members‘.

As for Corbyn himself:

  • He’s got some friends in high places – like Iran:

And yes, thank you, I know all about the feebleness of Corbyn’s opponents. But the fact remains that the Labour party has just endorsed an apologist for Putin’s imperial aggression; a man who did not just appear on the propaganda channel of Russia, which invades its neighbours and persecutes gays, but also of Iran, whose hangmen actually execute gays. Labour’s new leader sees a moral equivalence between 9/11 and the assassination of bin Laden, and associates with every variety of women-hating, queer-bashing, Jew-baiting jihadi, holocaust denier and 9/11 truther. His supporters know it, but they don’t care’.

  • He doesn’t appear to be a big fan of women:

‘A few on the British left are beginning to realise what they have done. Feminists were the first to stir from their slumber. They were outraged this week when Corbyn gave all his top jobs to men. I have every sympathy. But really, what did they expect from a man who never challenged the oppression of women in Iran when he was a guest on the state propaganda channel? You cannot promote equality at home while defending subjugation abroad and it was naive to imagine that Corbyn would try’.

  • He’s definitely no patriot:

‘George Orwell wrote of the ‘English intellectual [who] would feel more ashamed of standing to attention during “God Save the King” than of stealing from a poor box’. That came to mind on Tuesday when Corbyn declined to sing ‘God Save the Queen’ at the Battle of Britain remembrance service’.

‘Mr Corbyn has made no secret of his desire to abolish the monarchy’.

  • Oh, and he likes Hamas and Hezbollah:

Lastly, isn’t it funny how voters seem to have this uncanny knack for weeding out leaders like these and giving neither a mandate to govern in their own right?


(*) Sneaky pun intended.

(**) PS: the following opinion of the Independent’s Sarah Arnold – regarding May’s refusal to debate – is pure comedy gold (trigger warning: bad grammar alert):

The Prime Minister is leagues ahead of Corbyn in the opinion polls; levels unseen since Margaret Thatcher’s day. Why would she risk this potentially landslide win to have a few digs at her rival live on TV when she could slip up and cut the percentage?

Theresa May is coasting to a memorable victory on 8 June – taking the time out of a hectic pre-election schedule to debate Jeremy Corbyn live will not benefit her, or any of us.

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68 Responses to Theresa May’s Train Wreck

  1. Crossie

    Now this may sound a little silly*, but if you think like Malcolm Turnbull and act like Malcolm Turnbull, then there’s a very good chance that you’ll end up like Malcolm Turnbull – and have a bad time.

    And I hope Boris Johnson will step up now and take control of that runaway train. Just like Abbott he refused to fight and let May have her way. I am sick and tired of all these gentlemen on our side of the aisle and it looks like the rest of the voting public are not impressed either. People can spot a self-involved loser a mile away.

    From now on conviction politics or nothing.

  2. mareeS

    The asset that the CrosbyTextors threw away was me, and people like me, who could have pitched $0000s into the tin but now choose not to.

    I would never have thoujght to see the day when the Liberal Party lost all understanding of opportunity cost.

  3. cynical1

    The youngsters voted against evil old white men.

    As preached to the mushy young minds.

    Or what’s left of those young minds after years of indoctrination

  4. cui bono

    Yes, you have got to show up to a fight.
    Boris looks like he’s up for it. Like Donald. Like Shorten.

  5. Mark M

    “As for any politicians who have ever believed in global warming, or supported the carbon tax, or a carbon-constrained economy, there is no hope for them.
    They are either too stupid or incompetent to be taken seriously.”

    http://newsweekly.com.au/article.php?id=5257

    I know I have quoted it before, but, it is plainly true, and can’t be quoted enough times.

  6. A Lurker

    What is it about modern political parties in the West that they choose as leaders the most weak-minded, ineffectual, bleeding-heart, spineless, unprincipled, waste-of-space, immoral, waste-of-oxygen tossers to ever ‘grace’ our Parliaments?

  7. miltonf

    Great article. Fascinating reading.

  8. Herodotus

    Yes, we have our parallel idiocies happening here. As for Shorten being up for a fight – who can forget his anachronistic WW2 anti-Japanese spray or his alleged deals with business at the expense of union members?

  9. RobK

    You have to at least look like you know what you are doing and defend your position to be convincing. Having a lead in the polls is critical at the end of the race (to state the obvious), not the beginning. Having an election when one is not required is seen as cowardly and opportunistic.
    Good round up Marcus.

  10. RobK

    Having a (very) early election suggests you don’t have much confidence in your own performance in the events that will unfold. To shouts: this is as good as it gets under my leadership.

  11. It’s not so much that we have idiot conservative (I use that term loosely) leaders, but that we have so many idiot members putting these idiots into leadership positions.

    May was against Brexit and is clearly not a conservative, yet she was made PM. Turnbull is against cheap power and all for green garbage and is clearly not a conservative, yet he was made PM.

    Who are these idiots behind the scenes doing this to us and why?

  12. incoherent rambler

    “As for any politicians who have ever believed in global warming, or supported the carbon tax, or a carbon-constrained economy, there is no hope for them.
    They are either too stupid or incompetent to be taken seriously.”

    or corrupt

  13. Empire GTHO Phase III

    Textor delivered the result May’s masters demanded – unstable government.

  14. md

    Well said. Everyone should put your website on their daily browse list.

    The main problem ‘conservatives’ have is that they have ceded social policy to the Left. It has become a no-go zone, the message from the Left being, ‘Touch our stuff and we’ll hammer you.’ It’s why Trump, the only politician in the world who threatens to have a conservative social policy agenda, is under siege from a Left whose unremitting hatred has exposed the true extent of their mental disorders – it is normal to hate, but when it is so all-consuming that it leads to obsessive conduct, it points to a serious mental disorder.

    On social policy, the governments of Howard, Abbott, Turnbull, May, Cameron et al all took the easy road by ceding the social policy agenda to the Left, and in the process they crapped on their core constituency. Then, because they had no social policy agenda, they fell back on the only issue on which they could pretend to have an agenda: economic policy. The problem is that the myth of being ‘good economic managers’ works only if you are fortunate enough to stumble into an era of favourable economic circumstances, as the big taxing, big spending, mass immigration ponzi scheme adopting Howard government did, and as Bill Clinton did in the US.

    But in hard times the myth won’t stand up, which is why lately we have pretend-conservative governments that, in the name of ‘responsible economic management’ are tinkering at the edges of the budget problem by putting the boot into their core constituency, such as the elderly, while at the same time doing absolutely nothing about:
    – welfare as a lifestyle choice;
    – money squandered on the arts and sport;
    – the ‘human rights’ industry – and all the government institutions that support it;
    – gigs oversees for mates;
    – expenses rorts – you know, the ones that are within the guidelines;
    – the institutions of the country working against the interests of the mainstream community;
    – a climate of fear if you voice your concerns about what refugee and immigration policies are doing to our society;
    – pandering to the myths pushed by leftist environmental extremists – and pushing power prices up in the process;
    – the Left using minorities as political weapons, in the sense that, under the pretence of acting in their interests, the Left are using them to run a political agenda that is intentionally harmful to the interests of the nation as a whole and to the minorities concerned;
    – violence and division in our society and a justice system that actively promotes it.
    … I am sure there are more!

    The people advising conservatives believe all this drivel about winning elections in the ‘middle ground’. How is what you have read above ‘the middle ground’? What they truly mean, even if they won’t acknowledge it, is that they are hoping if they don’t go near any of the Left’s stuff the leftist media will be kind enough to let them fall over the line at the next election. But times have changed. Thanks to the internet, core conservatives now have the means to spread their message and to refine it. ‘Conservative’ politicians and their advisers need to go back to basics and learn to understand their constituency. Here’s a hint for them: people want economic stability, social order and just outcomes for everyone. At the moment we have the exact opposite on every count. Our economy is in serious trouble, our society has become violent and divided and we see unjust outcomes in the way government and the institutions of the country pander to those who are pushing hatreds or grievances, or are simply scamming the system. By all means put the boot in, but not to your own people. We want economic reform, but come back to us when you show us that you have the guts to deal with everything that is wrong with our society. And no PRETEND-policies on reforming 457 visas and ‘getting tough on welfare’. We’re not fools. We know what your game is.

  15. struth

    Scum not dumb.

    They know exactly what they are doing.
    This seems hard for people on the right to grasp.
    This is because you are decent people.

    You reason in your own mind that they therefore must be incredibly naive and gullible etc.
    Their evil confuses decent people.
    A murderer of course is insane.
    But he is not gullible and innocent.
    There is inherent evil.
    These people know what they are doing.
    We are the more gullible for not seeing it.
    For not wanting to see it.
    Underpinning all leftists is a hatred for the west and it’s values.
    They will kill it as they believe they should.
    Turdbull and skeletor don’t give a shit about the west, it’s people or anything except themselves.
    They’ll be right.
    They’ve got the money and security and can live anywhere on the globe they chose.

  16. The British have always had a bent towards the Fascism.
    In the early days of Churchill’s tenure there was a few dozen of them that MI5 rounded up.
    And a good thing too, or the outcome of the war could have been completely different for all of us.

  17. calli

    It’s so stupid, you’d almost think it was planned.

  18. It’s so stupid, you’d almost think it was planned.

    You rang?

  19. stackja

    Tim Blair: The party’s over for left-leaning demagogues
    Tim Blair, The Daily Telegraph
    June 12, 2017 12:00am
    Subscriber only
    Anthony Lane captured perfectly the nature of Saint Jeremy’s appeal to youthful UK voters with a subsequent piece in the New Yorker:

    “And suddenly there was with him a host of young people. And he said unto them, Ye shall study and grow wise in all things, and I shall not ask ye for gold. And the sick shall be made well, and they also will heal freely. And he promised unto them all manner of goodly things.

    “And the young people said unto him, How shall these things be rendered, seeing that thou hast no money in thy purse?

    “And he spake unto them in a voice of sounding brass and said, Soak the rich. And again, Pull down the mighty from their seats.

    “And the young people went absolutely nuts.”

  20. stackja

    Tim Blair: The party’s over for left-leaning demagogues
    Tim Blair, The Daily Telegraph
    June 12, 2017 12:00am
    Subscriber only
    Theories abound as to exactly why young folk are so drawn to elderly greybeard commies. Desire for a father figure? Mass hypnosis? Rampant gerontophilia? Unresolved Santa Claus fixations? All are plausible, but most likely it’s because these kids are just too young to know the horrors of left-wing extremism.

  21. min

    I had a begging email from Andrew Bragg and as it was asking for money ,you know they have to read your reply. I sent my usual reply I will not donate to the MT Coalition team . I want the Liberal Party back.
    I posted recently that Textor and co did the same in Uk , promoted Therese May ‘s Conservative team. At least used the same logo only very small . Here they eliminated Liberal logo.

  22. Ƶĩppʯ (ȊꞪꞨV)

    They were outraged this week when Corbyn gave all his top jobs to men.

    He’s not as stupid as he looks.

  23. struth

    When it comes to corruption and leftism, Australia isn’t as many see it.
    Always lagging a few years behind the States and Britain.
    We are chief players and exporters.
    At the cutting edge.
    World’s best practice……………………..in elitism.

  24. lotocoti

    What is it about modern political parties …

    The inclusive fetish.
    Even if it means including those whose ideals are inimical to yours.
    Avoiding the bad optics of nutbags waving their placards on the six o’clock news is more important than holding a position and defending it.
    Some long dead Japanese bloke once said:
    When confronted with the River of Death, dive in. You might find that you can swim.
    These days they aren’t even interested in testing if the river is wet.

  25. stackja

    The Australian
    JENNIFER ORIEL
    The Australian 12:00AM June 12, 2017

    As in Britain, many disenfranchised members of Australia’s centre right party believe faceless men have gained ideological control. The tendency is apparently acute in NSW and leads to the selection of candidates who reflect a populist, politically correct line while disfavouring dissenters.

    The insular culture created by anti-democratic preselection processes excludes potential members and candidates with more diverse life experience than the political class.

    Such insularity could cost the Liberals dearly in coming elections where a greater range of right-leaning parties is planning to run lower house candidates.

    There is a lesson to be learned from the diminishing returns of centrist parties run by PC faceless men: if you silence the democratic voice of your people, they will silence yours.

  26. lotocoti

    What is it about modern political parties …

    The inclusive fetish.
    Even if it means including those whose ideals are inimical to yours.
    Avoiding the bad optics of nutbags waving their placards on the six o’clock news is more important than holding a position and arguing for it.
    Some long dead Japanese bloke said:
    When confronted with the River of Death, dive in. You might find that you can swim.
    These days they aren’t even interested in testing if that river is wet.

  27. lotocoti

    What is it about modern political parties …

    The inclusive fetish.
    Even if it means including those whose ideals are inimical to yours.
    Avoiding the bad optics of nutbags waving their placards on the six o’clock news is more important than holding a position and arguing for it.
    Some long dead Japanese bloke said:
    When confronted with the River of Death, dive in. You might find that you can swim.
    These days they aren’t even interested in testing if that river is wet.

  28. lotocoti

    What is it about modern political parties …

    The inclusive fetish.
    Even if it means including those whose ideals are inimical to yours.
    Avoiding the bad optics of nutbags waving their placards on the six o’clock news is more important than holding a position and arguing for it.
    Some long dead Japanese bloke said:
    When confronted with the River of Death, dive in. You might find that you can swim.
    These days they aren’t even interested in testing if that river is wet.

  29. lotocoti

    What is it about modern political parties …

    The inclusive fetish.
    Even if it means including those whose ideals are inimical to yours.
    Avoiding the bad optics of nutbags waving their placards on the six o’clock news is more important than holding a position and arguing for it.
    Some long dead Japanese bloke said:
    When confronted with the River of Death, dive in. You might find that you can swim.
    These days they aren’t even interested in testing if that river is wet.

  30. John Bayley

    The tragedy of Mrs May’s social care proposal was that it was the right policy based on the right premise: that those who can afford to pay for their care should do so.

    I am so tired of hearing this sh*t….
    Yes, those who can afford to pay for their own care should do so.
    But that overlooks the small fact that those same people are also already paying for everyone else; often several times over!
    So yes, to smack what is in effect a huge death tax on top of all the other taxes the same poor mugs have already paid throughout their working is just the ticket to make it ‘fair’!
    You’re right Marcus, this is straight out of Turnbulls’ playbook.

    Feminists were the first to stir from their slumber. They were outraged this week when Corbyn gave all his top jobs to men. I have every sympathy.

    Bah. If he selected the appointees on merit, rather than on the basis of their sex, then good on him! At least one good trait the man has!

  31. lotocoti

    What is it about modern political parties …

    The inclusive fetish.
    Even if it means including those whose ideals are inimical to yours.
    Avoiding the bad optics of nutbags waving their placards on the six o’clock news is more important than holding a position and arguing for it.
    Some long dead Japanese bloke said:
    When confronted with the River of Death, dive in. You might find that you can swim.
    These days they aren’t even interested in testing if that river is wet.

  32. Texas Jack

    The federal LNP’s remaining electoral asset is that there isn’t an election due until 2019. Beyond that?

  33. RobK

    “There is a lesson to be learned from the diminishing returns of centrist parties run by PC faceless men: if you silence the democratic voice of your people, they will silence yours.”
    That’s good. I like it.

  34. miltonf

    Which they seem intent on losing

  35. miltonf

    Almost like they’re doing a scorched earth on us

  36. Dianeh

    MD

    Totally agree. There needs to be true differentiation between the two major parties. The conservatives need to argue their case and attack the left green dogma of Labor. Rather than put up similar policies, the Libs or any Conservative party need to come up with policies that reflect the values of their supporters. Policies need to address problems not simply continue the current debacle with slight changes.

    The ‘dementia’ tax is a good example. I agree in principle but how about a change to the way pensions are paid instead? The battlers clearly have no income and little assets, so their pension and benefits need to remain. But for those with a house and maybe other suitable assets, let them use the value of the house to supplement their pension. My idea would allow home owners to elect a pension supplement level that would be funded from their estate. The supplement would not affect benefits. The amount of supplement available would be limited based on a proportion of the home’s values and the age of the home owner. The recovery value from the estate could include a component That is a fee for the service.

    This supplement would be especially beneficial to part pensioners who want to receive more income but don’t want to sell assets to do so. As well as people with million doKaren properites. There could be caveats placed on the property to ensure govt is paid back, as well as contractual arrangements. Yes I am proposing a reverse mortgage type arrangement but one that does not reduce the pension, it supplements it (therefore it must have limits set). Also could allow home owners to purchase ‘aged care bonds’ that would reduce assets (removing them from asset/income tests) to allow more people to access the pension while at the same time funding very expensive aged care places in the future.

    I’m not saying I think any of this is the answer or even if viable, just giving an example of thinking outside the box and trying to adhere to conservative values and look after the base.

    Another benefit is it would be optional. People can choose what is best for them. Self determination should be encouraged by the Libs.

  37. Susan McIntyre

    Struth gets it!

  38. Texas Jack

    Dianeh
    #2409831, posted on June 12, 2017 at 8:43 am

    My idea would allow home owners to elect a pension supplement level that would be funded from their estate. The supplement would not affect benefits.

    Isn’t that the whole problem? You’re a conservative or libertarian whatever blogging at Catallaxy in support of what amounts to some new layer of government meddling? Private providers are already in this space. Who says a (another) government scheme is the answer?

  39. Baldrick

    Excellent summary marcus.

    Of course the take-home message for our very own Stupid.Fucking.Liberal.Party for the 2019 federal election will be to move further Left to counter the Conservative backlash™ that the Textor/Crosby luvvies have burnt.

  40. John Bayley

    My idea would allow home owners to elect a pension supplement level that would be funded from their estate. The supplement would not affect benefits.

    As Texas Jack said.

    FYI – you don’t need ‘reverse mortgages’; products already exist in the market place – developed by the private sector – to allow home owners access equity in their homes on a ‘fractional’ basis. In other words, there is no need to borrow, so there is no compound interest working against you and it also works a lot better with the Centrelink means testing.

    The problem is, most people do not want to do that if they can fall back on ‘free’ stuff from the government.

  41. anonandon

    Good stuff. I didn’t realise that Textor qualified his statement about us not mattering with the word ‘qualitative’. It turns out that the ‘quantitative’ evidence did matter.

  42. The problem is, most people do not want to do that if they can fall back on ‘free’ stuff from the government.

    No John, the problem is some of the people involved in the reverse mortgage business are outright crooks, who took advantage of old people with limited monetary skills – mostly little old ladies – and fleeced them blind.

    I was involved in a case a couple of years ago where an elderly widow was talked into a supposedly reverse mortgage facility by her bank manager (one of the Big Four), secured against the title of the family home, which she owned outright. It was meant to supplement her payments from her late husband’s super provisions – “for emergencies and such”.

    Trouble was, it was set up as an overdraft facility and she was being charged interest on the entire overdraft amount, rather than what she had drawn against it, which was bugger all. By the time her son realised what was going on three years later, the bank “owned” a sizeable percentage of the total value of the property.

    So yes, in a perfect world there should be no need for government involvement.
    Unfortunately we don’t live in a perfect world.

  43. Token

    Great analysis.

    The people who demanded the overthrow of Abbott must feel proud see the natural end of their project.

    Higher tax & eber growing government.

  44. Rabz

    May wanted to introduce a system whereby care for the elderly would be paid for by the government selling their house after their death. Although the policy allowed for £100,000 ($128,500) to be kept for the person’s family, there was no cap on how much could be taken. If a house was worth £1m, for example, nine-tenths of that value could conceivably end up in the hands of the state rather than relatives.

    Bluddee hell – I hadn’t even heard of this idiocy until a mate at work told me Friday evening that it was probably the single most important factor in the pasting handed to the stupid bloody tories.

    It’s the type of “policy” you’d expect Corby to believe in, but even he wouldn’t be stupid enough to scare the electorate with it just before an election.

    May is a complete moron and must resign. Her position, like Cameron’s after the Brexit vote, is totally untenable.

  45. Token

    I hadn’t even heard of this idiocy until a mate at work told me Friday evening that it was probably the single most important factor in the pasting handed to the stupid bloody tories.

    The bloated carcass of a bureaucratic state will never be funded by higher contributioN’s by the activist class.

    The Labor-Lites always attack their base rather than those committed to destroy them.

  46. cui bono

    John Bayley
    #2409814, posted on June 12, 2017 at 8:29 am : So true. They have turned on their friends, the savers, to pay for their never-to-be-friends, the spongers.

    Herodotus
    #2409750, posted on June 12, 2017 at 6:55 am Agree that Shorten is pathetic when it comes to policy fights but the post was about how candidates look to voters and supporters. In 2016 Shorten was seemingly out there 24/7, whereas M thought one mid-morning event was adequate. Voters noticed, Lib supporters were disgusted.

  47. The people who demanded the overthrow of Abbott must feel proud see the natural end of their project.

    Yes, things would have been so much better under Abbott. What, with a “fairness tax”, raising the retiring age to 70, killing off a multi-million dollar fishing venture and delaying (again) a multi-billion dollar mine with green tape, a paid parental leave program that allowed well-off public servants to double dip, a Medicare “co-payment” that nobody understood, to finance a white elephant medical research facility that nobody wanted, quashing free speech in the interests of “Team Australia”, introducing an emissions trading scheme in secret, and culminating in a $30 billion budget deficit to boot, things were certainly looking rosy under Abbott.

  48. Norman Church

    So, an attempt to re-introduce death duties by stealth proved to be unpopular with the Conservative base. Who’da thunk it?

  49. md

    Well said, memoryvault. Conservatives need to stop being swayed by vague notions of what politicians say they ‘believe in’ and take a good hard look at the leftist policies of the Howard, Abbott and Turnbull governments. For example, take a look at how many Liberals have stood up in parliament and shamelessly spoken about their ‘belief in free speech’. Are they really that stupid that they believe their own bull, or do they think we are stupid enough to believe it?

  50. calli

    May is a complete moron and must resign.

    Women in politics are Klingons. They never go willingly. She must be toppled.

  51. a happy little debunker

    I had wondered why there were so many similarities between the Turnbull Campaign and the May Campaign.
    Now, I know – they copied it in Texta.

  52. Token

    May is such a Hillary / Gillard / Merkel clone. Another political automobile.

    Thank goodness for the Iron Lady who proves female leadership is possible.

  53. Token

    Political automon / robot…

  54. H B Bear

    There are few creatures in the modern political system more over-rated and feted than the Textor-Crosby’s of the world. Anyone who has seen the ALP’s Bruce Hawker on Bolt would know what I mean.

  55. H B Bear

    Well said, memoryvault. Conservatives need to stop being swayed by vague notions of what politicians say they ‘believe in’ and take a good hard look at the leftist policies of the Howard, Abbott and Turnbull governments.

    Lieborals love lower taxes and smaller government. They can talk about it for hours. Years even, if they are in Opposition.

  56. Roger

    Thank goodness for the Iron Lady who proves female leadership is possible.

    The exception who proved the rule?

    In any case, I doubt we’ll see her type again.

    The culture that produced her – modest, middle class, church going, virtuous & industrious: the epitome of British non-conformism – is dead.

  57. Dianeh

    Fair comment about duplicating reverse mortgages within the govt. I wasn’t thinking about increasing govt but reducing it. Just not explained very well. We already have duplication and poor uptake of existing schemes. Let’s Make it simpler and get some results.

    As MV has pointed out there are unscrupulous people out there,as well as many different, often unsuitable products flogged off as reverse mortgages. At the very least, Products could be registered as suitable as reverse mortgages, for use by social security clients, recommended as suitable by Centrelink for eg. Plus there is already has a scheme administered by Centrelink to allow pensioners to borrow money against assets, but conditions are onerous with very few people eligible. But cannot borrow so as to allow them more than the full pension per fortnight. So full pensioners are excluded. So schemes with poor uptake are failures and we need to look for alternatives.

    The whole thing needs to be simplified and incentivised. Make it worthwhile and easy for pensioners to increase their income from their equity. Provide protections etc. but most of all, make it their choice, do not force them. Right now most don’t see any benefit to themselves and mistrust any interference with their assets.

    The current system is bullshit. And to make it worse, the aged pension requirement don’t match the aged care requirements, meaning people get caught short even with financial advice.

    My real point is that there are unexplored possibilities for improving every area of govt but we must get outside the green left mindset.

  58. John Bayley

    … the problem is some of the people involved in the reverse mortgage & financial services business are outright crooks, who took advantage of old people with limited monetary skills – mostly little old ladies – and fleeced them blind.

    Totally agree – with the above small additions.

  59. Neil

    Why do people say May did so badly? The Conservatives primary vote increased from 36.9% to 42.4%. What i don’t understand is how come the primary vote increased but number of seats fell.

  60. marcus

    Neil – my first thought on that is the UKIP votes. Looks like plenty more of them went to Corbyn rather than May.

  61. Neil

    Makes no sense. An increase in the primary vote for Conservative from 37% to 42% is a huge increase in politics but they ended up with less seats

  62. marcus

    But more of the UKIP votes ended up in Corbyn’s hands, allowing more first past the post seat wins.

  63. .

    Corncob (?! damn you autocorrect) is pro Brexit.

    That is what the people wanted.

  64. H B Bear

    Makes no sense. An increase in the primary vote for Conservative from 37% to 42% is a huge increase in politics but they ended up with less seats

    First past the post. A lot of votes in seats that you don’t need them and not enough in seats where you do. Unless you are in a seat that regularly swaps between sides your vote is irrelevant in a democracy.

  65. Token

    Why is the creepy Obama adviser Jim Messina given a pass in this post?

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