Friday, August 10, 2018
After a week of political assassinations, backdoor deals, accusations of bullying, sniping and wrecking, you’d think our politicians in Canberra were taking a page from Game of Thrones.
Then this curious little thing happened: responding to Malcolm Turnbull’s suggestion that Peter Dutton’s eligibility to sit in parliament should be referred to the High Court of Australia, Scott Morrison did a Joffrey Baratheon, declaring once and for all that he is in charge: “As the Prime Minister now, then I’ll make the decisions that I believe are in the best interests of the nation”.
We all know how that worked out.
Jokes aside, I get where he’s coming from. He wants respect. The office of the Prime Minister demands it.
But how can he expect to receive any respect as Prime Minister when he and his colleagues have treated it with so little themselves? The last time Australian voters were allowed to vote out a sitting Prime Minister for themselves was 2007, when the people of Bennelong didn’t even give John Howard the dignity of winning his own electorate.
We’ve had five Prime Ministers in five years, none of which the voters had a say in. Nobody has given a good reason why this is happening. Scott Morrison is kidding himself when he says “When placed in command, take charge”. He wasn’t placed in command. It was more like his party had a meltdown, wiped out its own leader, wiped out the next best alternative (Julie Bishop), realised just before it was too late that Peter Dutton is about as unlikeable as Ramsay Bolton before wiping him out too, and Scott Morrison just happened to be lucky sod still standing. At best, he is the Steven Bradbury of Australian politics.
At worst, he’s just next in line to be knifed (probably by Tony Abbott).
Anyway, I’m feeling entitled to have a spray about Australian politics because I just received official confirmation that I am, in fact, an Australian citizen. It doesn’t feel like it and, to be honest, 50 per cent of the time Caucasians say to me “But you’re not really Australian though, right?” (a lifetime of that really makes you feel like your opinion isn’t worth anything)… but whatevs.