To TAFKAS’ mind, there is no more a pathetic, unimaginative and narcissistic rhetorical tool than the call to rational authority. It basically suggests that those that disagree with the “rational” protagonist are by definition irrational.
And so speaking of pathetic, unimaginative and narcissistic, TAFKAS would like to bring up former Australian Prime Minister, Malcolm Turnbull.
As part of his great Australian book tour, Mr Turnbull recently had a few things to say about former Trade Minister, Steve Ciobo:
Every advancement Steve Ciobo had enjoyed in politics had been under my leadership.’
Perhaps to pat himself on the back for his excellence identifying talent or perhaps as a slap to his predecessor and successor, Mr Turnbull added:
(Former prime minister Tony) Abbott hadn’t rated him, and neither did (Scott) Morrison.
But then comes the Turnbull gold:
You cannot treat politicians as rational actors, especially those like Dutton, Cormann, Ciobo and numerous others who’d been in the game all their lives. Having come into politics at 50 from the rational world of business, I always assumed people would, more or less, act in their rational best interest. But that assumption is wrong, at least in the Liberal Party and especially with its right wing.
So let’s get this straight. According to Mr Turnbull, it was in Mr Ciobo’s rational best interest to continue to support Mr Turnbull as Prime Minister because it was only Mr Turnbull who would give Mr Ciobo a cabinet position and the personal benefits (money, status, pension) that would bring.
Thus, according to Mr Turnbull, rational action in public office is to act in one’s personal interest and by definition, not acting in one’s personal interest is irrational. Ergo, by not supporting Mr Turnbull, Mr Ciobo was acting irrationally.
Telling one might say. Perhaps it is one of those Kinsley gaffes where a politician reveals some truth that was not intended to be revealed.
Perhaps it is more revealing about Mr Turnbull. Probably not.