Recalling the hysteria around the knighthood

In January 2015, Prime Minister Tony Abbott announced two Knighthoods, one for the Duke of Edinburgh, the other for former Defence Chief Angus Houston. The media reported them as Imperial Knighthoods in a newly established Imperial Knighthood system. The Knighthoods were in fact within the Order of Australia.

The two Knighthoods followed their re-introduction by Abbott, the announcement of which had provoked media hysteria out of proportion to its place in the Australian political scene. The reaction to Prince Philips’ Knighthood, however, eclipsed the hysteria of the original announcement to an extent hardly thought possible. Indeed, the media collectively went berserk. To talk about circling vultures and a feeding frenzy is to use images that fall way short of an accurate description. Continue reading “Recalling the hysteria around the knighthood”

Marxism – its basics

The following is an excerpt from my book Tony Abbott: The Student Years that will be released early 2018.

The first consolidation of the New Left at Sydney University came with the appearance of Trotskyists and Maoists in student activity. A pro-Chinese faction within the CPA had broken away and established Communist Party of Australia (Marxist-Leninist) in March 1964. In the same year a Trotskyist faction formed. Because some Trotskyists stepped forward in the mid-1960s to take a leading role in the student activism after 1967, it is necessary to have a basic understanding of classical Marxism to follow the events.  Without that understanding, it will also be difficult to comprehend what Abbott was fighting and what motivated him. The leftist devotee may find it tedious to have the basics of Marxism rehearsed here – and not with the brilliant colour he would likely want. I have frequently found, however, that many of Tony Abbott’s supporters have little idea of what Marxism entails. I anticipate that this book will have most appeal to that readership. Furthermore, most people objecting to the stifling regime of Political Correctness, which is none other than society’s forced adherence to Marxist dogma and its various interpretations, are similarly in the dark about Marxism. Continue reading “Marxism – its basics”

Recalling the assassination of Prime Minister Tony Abbott

I intend to re-post on this website some of the comments and essays I had posted on another website (they are no longer there). These are comments and essays that I consider important for the understanding of and application of Edmund Burke’s thought. As it turns out, the present commentary coincides with yet another display of treachery by members of the Liberal Party.

 

(click on graphics to enlarge)

The timeline:

  • 12 September 2015, Saturday, Abbott in Perth campaigning for the Canning by-election.
  • 12 September 2015, Bishop and Turnbull have a meeting at a Sydney hotel “to discuss where things stood’’.
  • 13 September 2015, Sunday, Abbot in Adelaide, meets with Pyne.
  • 13 September 2015, Sunday night, Turnbull and his war room meet over dinner at Peter Hendy’s Queanbeyan house.
  • 14 September 2015, Monday, at 8.30 am, Abbott at the Norwood Traffic Centre with South Australian Premier Jay Weatherill. No idea of conspiracy.
  • 14 September 2015, midday, Bishop tells Abbott there’s a challenge to his leadership and proposes three options.
  • 14 September 2015, 3.10 pm, after question time, Turnbull accosts Abbott.
  • 14 September 2015, in a press conference just after 4 pm, Turnbull declares: “A little while ago I met with the prime minister and advised him that I would be challenging him for the leadership of the Liberal Party…’
  • 14 September 2015, 9 pm Abbott lies bleeding from 54 stab wounds

Continue reading “Recalling the assassination of Prime Minister Tony Abbott”

Labor MP Kate Ellis gives in to a mother’s natural feeling

Labor Shadow Minister for Early Education, Kate Ellis, has announced her decision to leave parliament at the next election. The Australian reported her reasons:

‘In a letter sent to constituents today, Ms Ellis said one of the principal reasons for leaving is the age of her young son, who will start primary school during the next term of parliament.

“I have made this decision for one simple reason: I cannot bear the thought of spending at least 20 weeks of every year in Canberra away from my son, who will be starting school in the next term of Parliament, and from the rest of my family,” she said.

Continue reading “Labor MP Kate Ellis gives in to a mother’s natural feeling”

The break with Edmund Burke’s Club

A number of people have contacted me to ask why I suddenly parted company with Edmund Burke’s Club after having put so much time and effort into building and promoting the organization. One surprised correspondent said that I was the Club, given my extensive input into its activities. Indeed, over four years I wrote ninety-five percent of the meetings’ presentations and posts on the club’s website, something I am sure most people will excuse me for being proud of. During that time no one challenged me in any substantial way despite the opportunity during the meetings and the comment section on the website. To the contrary, I was often complimented on my presentations at the club’s meetings. I make this point in view of what precipitated the break.

The spark for the conflict that brought about the break was an email from Peter Janssen asking me what I thought of a report on news.com.au about Tony Abbott’s urging people to accept the outcome of the plebiscite on same-sex ‘marriage’, if it should go ahead. Peter also questioned the place of a plebiscite in our system of government. No doubt he had Burke’s famous Speech to the Electors of Bristol (1774) in mind. The question touched on what I believe to be crucial elements of Edmund Burke’s thought. Continue reading “The break with Edmund Burke’s Club”

The Peta Credlin Phenomenon

Tuesday September 13 was the Ides of September and the first anniversary of the secret meeting of Liberal Party conspirators at the house of MP Peter Hendy. The feature of that meeting of treachery was that the leading conspirator, the beneficiary of the conspiracy, was not present. He was comfortably ensconced in his harbour-side mansion sipping a Glenfiddich while awaiting a phone call from his underlings. The next day, Wednesday 14 September, was the first anniversary of the coup, the culmination of five years’ planning (according to Fairfax journalist Peter Hartcher) that deposed first term Prime Minister Tony Abbott and fulfilled Malcolm Turnbull’s desperate non-negotiable ambition of becoming prime minister of Australia.

A generous person may hope that Malcolm Turnbull derives the full measure of satisfaction from his self-centredness, his ruthlessness, and his ungovernable ambition. The rest has been a disaster – a disaster for the Liberal Party rent from top to bottom and a disaster for many of Turnbull’s co-conspirators whom an execrating electorate booted from the political arena. Continue reading “The Peta Credlin Phenomenon”

‘Gay marriage must be accepted’

Under the headline ‘Gay marriage vote must be accepted: Abbott’, 27 September 2016, the popular news website news.com.au informed its readers:

Former Prime Minister Tony Abbott has issued a message to politicians on all sides of parliament about a proposed national vote on same-sex marriage: whatever the people want must be accepted.

Despite his strong views against legalising same-sex marriage, he’s prepared to vote with the people should they say yes.

“This is a matter that is properly for the people and if the people vote for change, the parliament has to accept it,” he told 3AW on Tuesday.

“Individual members of parliament have to accept it.”

Equally, he hopes same-sex marriage supporters will do the same if the country votes no.

The proposed plebiscite won’t be binding and several coalition MPs have indicated they’ll vote no regardless of the result.

One wonders whether news.com.au has correctly paraphrased what Abbott said. If past media reports are any indication, Abbott is here talking about the politics of the issue of homosexual ‘marriage’ and not about its morality, his views of which have not changed, as the report indicates. It is not the first time that a media report has implied that Abbott has compromised his moral views. The report prompted friend Peter Janssen to comment: Continue reading “‘Gay marriage must be accepted’”

Abortion, Same-Sex Marriage and the Exercise of Prudence

In January 2013, an opinion piece by Tony Abbott, Leader of the Federal Opposition, appeared in the Herald-Sun, ‘For the record, I’m not opposed to IVF.’ This attempt to clarify his position did nothing to change the minds of Abbott’s critics. They simply went on warning women about his ingrained misogyny and the extreme danger he represents for their well-being and security should he be elected prime minister at the next Federal Election. Abbott would always be Captain Catholic for those shamelessly leading the sectarian campaign against him. The critical point here is that Abbott’s views on abortion and other such social matters, especially for his feminist critics, are in essence an issue of politics, and not of an exchange in which argument and counter argument are marshalled. I will come back to this.

On the other hand, just to show – again in the concrete circumstances – that often one cannot win in such hard-fought political matters, there were many conservatives who treated Abbott’s piece in the Herald-Sun as further evidence of Abbott’s (alleged) compromise on difficult moral issues, apparently to appease critics of his conservatism, outside and inside the Liberal Party. What had happened to the Tony Abbott who almost single-handedly took on the extreme left in student politics and came away with a famous victory, leaving his ideological opponents so decimated that they have not even today recovered and vent their frustrations by writing wimpy whingeing essays about Abbott’s brutal masculinity. There was a political brutality that Gillard’s John McTernan would be proud of. Continue reading “Abortion, Same-Sex Marriage and the Exercise of Prudence”