Wednesday, 25 October 2017

Opinion. Draft. 25 October, 2017.



Useful fools, the Cultural Marxists pouring out of the nation’s universities and into our institutions, got one thing right.

It is all about power.

At the centre of the circus which has enveloped conservative politics lies one man: Malcolm Turnbull.

Turnbull has long had a reputation for bullying his way to the top.

But the last week has demonstrated one thing, there really is such a thing as karma.

It is not just Tony Abbott who haunts Turnbull’s every waking hour. So, now, does the rest of the country.

On his watch, Australia has entered a parallel universe.

It is now a country which has, literally, some of the most expensive electricity, hopeless internet, unaffordable housing, ridiculous levels of red tape and highest costs of living in the world.

Pundits prattle diversity, but the country has never been more divided, while the conservatives have deliberately poisoned the public square with a putrid debate on gay marriage. An issue which could have been solved in an afternoon.

As the last week has shown, this is a government which never learns from its own mistakes.

The raids by the AFP last year on Senator Stephen Conroy’s offices over leaks to the media on the fiasco of the NBN backfired on the Coalition almost immediately.

This time around, the AFP raids and the leaks to the media backfired even more quickly. The AFP and Turnbull can concoct their faux outrage as much as they like, the public perception is that they are witnessing a clear abuse of power. In effect bullying.

Nor, when it comes to national security has Turnbull learnt anything. The endless beating of the terror drum did not save Tony Abbott. It will not save him.

And it has all come home to roost, literally.

The New Daily broke the story of concerns over cost overruns and security flaws at Turnbull’s mansion a year ago:

Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull is potentially endangering the lives of his family, staff, neighbours and the Australian Federal Police officers who protect him by choosing to defy tradition and live in his own mansion rather than lodgings provided by the taxpayer.
That’s the opinion of top security experts who ...  believe his mansion, in Sydney’s most expensive suburb of Point Piper, is vulnerable to attack from the busy harbour, from the unsecured streets and houses surrounding it, and from the air.

Not one person has disputed the accuracy of The New Daily's story.

AFP officers themselves were understood to be pleased with it, and improvements to security at the Prime Minister's home were made immediately.

Make no mistake, with Turnbull and his government responsible for dropping more than 100 bombs a month on Iraq and Syria, he and his $50 million mansion are the country’s number one terrorist targets.

The story was leaked to us by a national security insider concerned over the significant potential for disaster.

The problem remains exactly as it was a year ago.

In recent days there have been revelations of an internal memo claiming the AFP has had to scale back their crime fighting operations, linking this to the high cost of maintaining both the official residences and Turnbull’s private mansion.

Asked about the issue in parliament, Turnbull declared: “We have given record funding to the AFP.”

While a year ago Tony Abbott declined the opportunity to comment, this time around, with open war breaking out in government ranks, there was no such hesitancy: “It is a reasonable question to pose.”

Turnbull is understood to have been furious with the original story, determined heads would roll.

An essential link in the story was the AFP Association (AFPA), which is the union representing the officers themselves. President of the AFPA Angela Smith was quoted saying maintaining official residences in Canberra and Sydney was an indulgence taxpayers could not afford.

Following normal journalistic practice, these comments were transmitted to TND via the Association's publicity officer.

From the moment the story broke she was hauled over the coals and sacked shortly afterwards.

All for drafting up and then transmitting comments from her boss.

As she had only worked for the AFP Association for five months, the officer could not sue for unfair dismissal and was not entitled to a payout.

While none of the players in the chain of command, Malcolm Turnbull, Australian Federal Police Commissioner Andrew Colvin or Angela Smith could be easily sacked, it would appear the head kicking went straight down to the first person vulnerable in the chain - a press secretary who was just doing her job, and doing it well.

All over a story which was factually correct and clearly in the public interest.

Distressed, the publicity officer faced Christmas without a job and despairing for her own future.

Once again, Christmas is upon us.

This time around, as he tucks into his turkey, the Prime Minister can only ponder his own shattered career.


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