Peter O’Brien: PvO’s cut through analysis

Could anything highlight the vacuousness of Peter Van Onselen as a political commentator than the following quote from his column, prognosticating on the outcome of the next Federal election, in today’s Australian:

The question time performances of Malcolm Turnbull and senior ministers will be crucial.

I could be described as a political junkie but I never watch or listen to Question Time.  Taking understatement to a new level, I would not be alone in this.  QT is as far removed from the concerns of the vast majority of Australians as it is possible to be.  The sight of highly paid egomaniacs scoring childish points off each other might provide riveting entertainment for the members of the Canberra Press Gallery but voters could not care less.   Turnbull has suffered 38 Newspoll losses in a row but can turn that around by eviscerating Shorten on the floor of the House?  Really?

Here’s another one:

It was mischievous to say the Coalition would privatise Medicare, but the argument cut through with voters.

Mischievous!  How about cynical, deceptive, dishonest?

And again, relating to Emma Husar:

Questions hang over exactly what Shorten knew; and the government has called for an inquiry into her conduct, in particular with regard to entitlements. This issue won’t go away.

Want to bet?  What and when Shorten knew about this fiasco is a distraction that has already passed its use by date.

On the other side of the coin is the Coalition’s $444million giveaway to the Great Barrier Reef Foundation.  On that Van Onselen has this to say:

Sending so much money to preserve the reef should have been a good news story but, again, poor processes have soured the outcome. Strong media interest is likely to keep this story prominent unless the ­Coalition revises the funding allocation.

So the Husar issue ‘won’t go away’ while the GBRF scandal could be neutralized by the Government ‘revising the funding allocation’, whatever that means.   I don’t know about you but my money’s on Labor keeping the GBRF issue alive long after the Government, and the public, has lost interest in Husar.

Van Onselen’s theme is that the polls are so close that Turnbull could fashion a win:

Yesterday’s Newspoll highlights that while Labor’s dominance continues, the lead is wafer thin. Four 51-49 per cent two-party-preferred Newspoll leads in a row for Labor has the government close enough to steal the election during the campaign, as long as the issues debated between now and then can run the Coalition’s way

Four 51-49 polls might suggest a close result but only if you ignore the 34 that came before it.  Oh, and the mayhem that’s likely to attend ongoing negotiations around the NEG.

He gets paid to write this stuff?

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22 Responses to Peter O’Brien: PvO’s cut through analysis

  1. NB

    PVO and the Liberal Party, wishfully thinking us to an ALP victory.

  2. gbees

    PVO is totally useless. That’s all I have to say.

  3. iain russell

    Hussar knew that joining the ‘Ndrangheta meant total obedience and omertà. When the consigliere and capos decide it’s time ..well, that’s it baby, made man or not in the Kru. Her treatment is normal. Who would be surprised? Lucky there were no horse’s heads in her bed.

  4. miltonf

    Van Onesie is part of the problem- The Politico-media-pubic ‘service ‘ Marxist establishment.

  5. candy

    PVO is a big Turnbull fan. He is not hiding it. He likes the man (not the party so much).
    Each to their own. What is the issue with that?

  6. Mak Siccar

    PVO is a click bait columnist at the Oz there purely to provoke the readership and generate clicks on his fantasy stories. Anybody who reads his tripe needs their head read!

  7. He gets paid to write this stuff

    Worse. He gets paid to teach this stuff to unsuspecting students.

  8. Angus Black

    Van Oscillate is a case study in the disaster that is university expansion, commercialisation strategies of the last few decades.

    The percentage of bright potential students is no greater than it ever was, many of the bright have been ruined by teacher propaganda before they arrive and many of the rest will be ruined by university culture, the low quality of academics and “teaching down” to the capacity of the average student.

    If PVO is an example of a chaired Professor, would you advise your son to invest $100k and three years of his life in a degree programme?

  9. Ubique

    PVO is appalling. He is wrong about everything. He couldn’t pick the winner of a one-horse race. There’s only one person in Australia whose political instincts are worse than Malcolm Turnbull and that’s PVO.

  10. H B Bear

    For Prof van Wrongselen vacuous is actually pretty high praise. Usually it is LOL absurdity. Like Teh Bittered Sav I’m sure they just run his columns as clickbait.

  11. Jim Toohey

    And zealously guarded by his editors. Try to post a comment on a PVO column which is even mildly critical of his comments…..
    Definitely teachers pet at News

  12. Tom

    PVO’s clickbait is a perfect expression of how much The Australian loathes its readers and treats them with contempt.

  13. This simply represents the vacuum in which these people live. They have no understanding of what the ‘deplorables’ are looking for in government and, unfortunately, Turnbull and his cronies live in the same bubble and nothing will bring them out of it other than a humiliating election loss. Every move Turnbull makes provides an opportunity for Labor to make him look bad.

    The NEG is another one against Turnbull, which Shorten can claim even his own members don’t support. All Shorten has to do come the next election is to point out how expensive electricity has become under Turnbull and will continue to do so. Without any details, Shorten can say he will reduce electricity prices and Turnbull will have no comeback.

  14. John Constantine

    Lucky professor vanfilth is only being paid in the ‘fairy gold’ that is the Australian dollar.

    As soon as the sun shines upon the pile of gold and people can see that its only value is based upon the fairy tale that if you import mass numbers of people onto pitcairn island, and they all borrow enough money from overseas to buy a heap of windmills and pay each other two million pitcairn island dollars for a dogbox, then all pitcairn islanders are overnight multi-millionaires.

    Not long until this tosser is praising president for life shorten for cutting six zeroes off the end of Australian banknotes to solve the debasement of the currency.


  15. Spring is coming

    PVO is part of a j circle of press gallery members. To get to his position he needs to have produced a ‘body of work’ consistent with ex press gall journos. In the end we get alignment of thought and articles through MSM. Anyone who steps the wrong way gets knifed. Our local State and Fed govmint reps perform the same way. Til they’re all humming the same tune with variations in tone. Much like frogs round a swamp. PVO is a product of his swamp but he is not alone.

  16. OldOzzie

    Meanwhile in Canada -Reality Strikes – Pity it hasn’t struck TurdBulll and PVO and the Lemmings Liberals

    WSJ – Canada Backtracks on a Carbon Tax
    Justin Trudeau’s Liberals try to stop a stampede of capital out of the country.

    Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s Liberal government announced last month it will reduce a carbon tax on industry that is set to go into effect next year. The reason for the backtrack has to do with climate change, but not the kind associated with global warming.

    Mr. Trudeau is reacting to shifting political winds stirred by Canada’s investment climate, which has turned stone cold. He faces an election in October 2019, and Liberals will have trouble winning unless investors warm to Canada as a destination for capital again. The question is whether the scaling back of the carbon tax is too little, too late.

    The initial carbon-tax proposal, which takes effect next year, promised to levy companies on 30% of their emissions at 10 Canadian dollars (US$7.66) a metric ton, rising to C$50 a metric ton in 2022. The revision now sets the taxable emissions at 20%. The Journal’s Paul Vieira reported from Ottawa on Aug. 1 that “government officials are prepared to tinker further with the carbon-pricing regime should domestic industrial sectors bring evidence demonstrating ‘[heightened] competitiveness risks’ due to developments in the global marketplace.”

    Canada’s ability to attract capital suffered a setback when oil prices fell hard in 2015. Under Mr. Trudeau, who took office in November of that year, it hasn’t caught up. In an April 13 blog post, Jason Clemens and Niels Veldhuis of the Vancouver-based Fraser Institute noted that Canadian foreign direct investment amounted to C$31.5 billion in 2017, down 56% from C$71.5 billion in 2013. The authors added: “Since peaking in the fourth quarter of 2014, total business investment adjusted for inflation—excluding residential housing—is down almost 17.0 percent. Private-sector investment in factories and other structures is down 23.3 percent. And investment in intellectual property is down 13.3 percent.”

    The causes of this capital strike seem to be taxes and regulation, as more than one business leader has noted. Suncor Energy CEO Steve Williams said in February that his company is “having to look at Canada quite hard. The cumulative impact of regulation and higher taxation than other jurisdictions is making Canada a more difficult jurisdiction to allocate capital in.”

    For prospective investors, the business climate in Canada is naturally compared with that of the U.S. Recent U.S. tax cuts, including accelerated depreciation, and President Trump’s deregulation push, are increasing the pressure on Canada to step up. In an April interview with the Canadian Press, Royal Bank of Canada president and CEO Dave McKay described the competitiveness problem behind what he called “significant” capital flight and called on the government to address it. “If we don’t keep the capital here, we can’t keep the people here—and these changes are important to bring human capital and financial capital together in one place,” he said.

    The new carbon tax is only one of the green policies hurting Canada’s competitiveness. Ontario has long been the nation’s manufacturing hub. But in 2005 the province began phasing out the use of coal for electricity generation, and in 2009 it passed the Green Energy Act, designed to force industry and consumers into renewable energy. The net effect has been skyrocketing electricity prices in the province and declining manufacturing output.

    A May 8 paper by Fraser analysts Elmira Aliakbari and Ashley Stedman titled “The Cost of Pipeline Constraints in Canada” blames “environmental and regulatory impediments as well as political opposition” for delays in the expansion of the nation’s pipeline infrastructure. This has depressed prices for Canadian heavy crude, creating a drag on growth, the authors show. Energy company Kinder Morgan recently sold its assets in the Trans Mountain pipeline to the Canadian government because of continuing opposition to its completion by British Columbia and others.

    Elsewhere in Canada there has been aggressive pushback against the federal carbon tax. Ontario, under new political management since June, and Saskatchewan have gone to court to challenge the federal government’s authority to impose the tax. Prince Edward Island, New Brunswick and Manitoba have their own proposals to price carbon and are all on record against a federal take.

    In Alberta, where the economy depends heavily on pumping oil, the United Conservative Party’s Jason Kenney is the favorite to win next year’s election for provincial premier. He has promised to oppose the Trudeau tax. He says he will keep a provincial carbon tax but limit it to “major emitters.”

    Canadian Environment Minister Catherine McKenna said last week that the Trudeau government wants “to have the most energy efficient, smart industries here that create good jobs, at the same time do what we need to do to tackle emissions.” But Liberals may soon find out that as one of the world’s foremost energy producers, Canada can’t have it both ways.

  17. Senile Old Guy

    PVO – who?

    Exactly. PVO has been recycling the same BS for years.

  18. Mother Lode

    PvO is able to cut through analysis so skillfully that he can do it without touching it once.

    It is like being able to dive into a pool without getting wet.

  19. jjf

    You give him too much credit to call anything he writes as “analysis”

    Classic academic – no real world experience, living in a bubble and always starts from a left-green perspective.

    He would fit right in at the ABC and Fairfax!

  20. Mother Lode

    Surely PvO is trying to allay any sense of urgency the Libs may be feeling to help keep Trumble in place.

    He doesn’t want the Libs to replace Trumble with another Lib PM.

    He wants the Electorate to replace him with a Labor PM.

  21. Tom

    Precisely, ML. PVO doesn’t want anything to knock Trumble off course in his rush towards the cliff. The Liars and their Greenfilth ideological masters can smell the power it’s so close and PVO is barracking at the top of his lungs for a change of government.

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