Rudd v Turnbull

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On ABC TV’s panel program Q&A on Monday night, former Labor Prime Minister Kevin Rudd and former Opposition Leader Malcolm Turnbull strutted their stuff. During the one-hour television show they both answered wide-ranging questions on the economy, the revision of GST, climate change, productivity, industrial relations and education. They didn’t just answer these questions – they answered them well, displaying a formidable depth of knowledge and ability to present complex information in brief, comprehensible responses. The audience clearly enjoyed this power duo’s song and dance routine, which called forth a final question from Mr. Saeed Fassaie, quoted here in full:

“You two have a lot in common; you both are moderate, wealthy and not very popular in your own party but popular among people. Many Labour voters are disillusioned by the influence of the factions and unions. Many Liberal voters are disappointed by the influence of big business and the far right wing. Why don’t you two join and establish a new party that can open a new chapter in politics here in Australia?”

Amidst great mirth and self-deprecation, both Mr. Rudd and Mr. Turnbull denied categorically that they would challenge their respective leaders, although Mr. Turnbull could be described as ever so slightly less categorical. So it seems, unless they are telling porkies, that the leaderships of Mr. Tony Abbott and Prime Minister Julia Gillard are not under threat before the next election, due to be held sometime in 2013.

Download this episode of Q&A at the ABC website 
 

No Kevin, but yes, please, Malcolm

Come back, all is forgiven is what the Q&A audience seemed to be saying to both former leaders on Monday night as they laughed and clapped their way through the tap dancing routine described above.

But leading a country, or opposition party, requires much more than a neat performance on live TV. The nostalgia for what we think we have lost is palpable. There is grinning Kevin, still nerdy, but now more humorous and statesman like. And Malcolm, ever affable and polished, totally on top of domestic policy and world affairs.

But when Mr. Rudd was removed as PM his approval rating was declining, his temper tantrums with flight attendants were legendary and his ability to explain policy was questionable at best. His party panicked and the result was a new leader. When Mr. Turnbull was leading the Liberal Party he was responsible for a jaw-dropping attack on the then-PM, Mr. Rudd and Treasurer Wayne Swann, based on false reports from a highly unreliable public servant who was soon proven to be, given the most generous interpretation, completely delusional. Mr. Turnbull was challenged and lost the leadership – but only by one vote as he reminded us all again on Monday night. Mr. Rudd challenged Ms. Gillard in February and lost by a 2-1 result, as he also confirmed on Monday night.

So where is this heading? Do we really want these men back to lead their respective parties and the nation? Well let’s consider each one separately. I think Mr. Rudd looked relaxed, confident and entirely knowledgeable on Monday night and there was little he said I would disagree with. But I think it is easy to look that confident when you are on the backbench with more time and less responsibility than your party colleagues. I do not think his leadership style was inclusive when he was Prime Minister and I do think PM Gillard has done the hard yards and pushed through tough legislation to makeAustraliaa better country. She has shown her mettle despite repeated attacks from all quarters, so I think a swap back to Mr. Rudd would add little, despite his charm offensive on the ABC this week.

And that leaves me with Mr. Turnbull. Ah, Malcolm… what can I say? In this case I would swap his role with Mr. Abbott’s in a heartbeat. Mr. Abbott assumed the role of Opposition Leader with the statement that his role was to oppose – everything. And to be fair, he has pursued this plan relentlessly. But what a poor understanding of the Westminster system this is and what a poor outcome for our country it has led to. By all means, catch the government out when it presents poor policy or makes major mistakes, which all governments do. But have the courage to stand up and agree on matters of national importance such as climate change, a national water plan for the Murray Darling River system and our policy on refugees. So in the interests of a robust but workable parliament I believe we need an Opposition Leader who has the courage, like Mr. Turnbull, to recognise bad policy – such as work choices – when he sees it, to understand that climate change is not merely a Labor Party fantasy, and to push for policy which is for the good of all, regardless of who thought of it first.

Do you want Kevin Rudd back as leader of the Labor Party?
Yes
No
 
Do you want Malcolm Turnbull to replace Tony Abbot as Liberal leader?
Yes
No
 


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Written by Kaye Fallick

96 Comments

Total Comments: 96
  1. 0
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    I think you are right Julia Gillard has done the hard yards and managed to get through extraordinary legislation given her government is tied to working with the sheer whimsy of the independents and an oppositon who have taken that word to heart and will not move on any positive step for the country. She has also been under constant bigoted attack as she is a woman which we have seen surface in the media. PM Gillard is our elected leader and needs support and respect as such. Malcom is a rich boy at play, while I agree with much of his social agenda he belongs to a party that supports a negative not very bright ex boxer and seminarian as leader. Really!

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      Julia Gillard was NOT elected leader. In the first instance she acquired the position by treachery and in the second instance put there by the Green lunatics and independants.

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      She WAS elected leader. The PM is elected by, and from within, the party which forms government. Sure, she wasn’t leader when the election was held, but she was elected by the Labor Party as their leader, and thus as PM. So she was put there by her party – not the Greens and independents
      We don’t have direct election of the PM (say, as the USA elects its president).

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      Rod63: try substituting ‘treacherously elected leader’ hehe

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      As a voter I can go by what I have seen of a viciousness in Abbot, an outright emotional blackmail in a country that is already living with ‘goodhearted’ bullies everywhere, including the anti-smoking movement.

      We are – as I confirmed with many I met on street corners – the lepers of the country, and expereince segregation at a high degree. And no-one will listen because no-one wants to know we are victims of trauma, whether it be from sexual abuse, accidents, tensions in the family, loss of culture/environment in migrants, etc.

      Yet I cannot trust Rudd; his performance when he lost was like he was not emotionally mature, yet sucks up to people in the street to make himself a stage person in the leading role – this to me is yakky stuff.

      Therefore the best options are those whom are experienced in politics but have not yet accumulated a severely negative image within their voters insights. And so I discovered how nicely followed the general trend of yes vs no!

      I agree with Kaye, this clever insightful reporter I am privileged to answer 🙂

  2. 0
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    I agree with all you have said, Kaye, about Kevin Rudd and Julie Gillard. Ms Gillard continues on doing an increasingly impressive job. I don’t want to see Malcolm back however; he would boost the stocks of the Liberal Party and I don’t want to see them re-elected. I would fear for our health system(s), education, the environment, workersand their families, pensioners, the disabled and other less fortunate people in our society.

    Having said that, IF the Liberals were to get back into power next election, I would much rather it be under Turnbull than the very right-wing leadership they have now.

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      Well said. I am seriously planning emigration in the event of an Abbott/Bishop led government. They appear to be without viable ideas or empathy for ordinary Australians Turnbull is at the least a gentleman, and would bring some badly needed dignity to a Lib/Nat coalition IN OPPOSITION

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      There’s nothing wrong with Tony that a decent set of lycra and a new bike seat couldn’t fix. The outfit he wears now and the seat on his bike, both combine to make him walk funny!

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      Tony for PM and all parliamentary folks at question time MUST wear lycra hahaha

  3. 0
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    More than 50% of the population disagree with the Labour policy on climate change. Scientists disagree and anyone can find a selection to support or oppose it. More than 50 % of the population disgree with the carbon tax and the abandonment of a policy stance once the election was over. More than 50% of the population disagree with the labour policy on asylum seekers. More than 50% of the population are unhappy with the economic management of the Labour government. More than 50% of the people support opposition to Labour government and yearn for an election. Mr Turnbull has been described as more Labour than the Labour Party and it is unlikely he would be an acceptable leader by his colleagues.

  4. 0
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    Try Lateline from this week instead: as watched and reported upon by LP [extract];
    “SHORTEN THE FIRST TO DESERT GILLARD: As the truth closes in on Gillard and the rats start scratching at portholes, Bill Shorten is the first to prepare to desert the front line and leave his “mates” in the trenches. His pitiful attempt at fending off questions on the (previously asleep) ABC was unconvincing for good reason because Bill Shorten knows more than anyone about Gillard’s complicity in the AWU fraud.
    It was Shorten who went to great lengths to have it covered up.Shorten sat there, on the Lateline program, wriggling in his seat, alternating between shades of crimson, “I can’t recall… I wasn’t there”, he blustered. But you WERE there, Bob Shorten. As campaign manager for Bob Kernohan in 1992, you produced pamphlets documenting his opponent (Bruce Wilson’s) fraudulent activities. Are you sure you weren’t there Shorten? Are you sure you know nothing about this Gillard/Wilson thing? If I presented you with one of your pamphlets, would you perhaps remember then?
    You had just completed your articles at Maurice Blackburn lawyers and on the AWU’s payroll under Bob Kernohan when, in 1995, the extent of the Gillard/Wilson fraud became known.It was you, Bill Shorten, who stood there with Bill Ludwig and tried to convince Ian Cambridge to drop his demands for a Royal Commission. You asked him to refuse to co-operate with the police investigation. You were successful with Cambridge (and Gillard has repaid him well) but even your union thugs couldn’t convince Kernohan to back off, could they? “If this gets out, we all go down the gurgler!” That was how you described it, wasn’t it Shorten? Union members were not a priority for you, were they?”

    So, there is much that could happen in the next 12 months. But Rudd back in as a leader – extremely unlikely; Turnbull to roll Abbot would seem also unlikely. Gillard to go somewhere ? is a distinct possibility. Therefore it will be Abbot versus ??

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      I just cannot go on reading this nonsense from this serial offender.
      I am quitting before I am sick !!!
      I can just imagine what his further contributions will contain.

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    Kevin certainly shouldn’t come back to the leadership role, but I feel he is sadly wasted on the back bench. Malcolm should absolutely definitely lead the Coalition! It’s Tony who should be on the back bench despite his qualifications – he appears to be a pollie who doesn’t hear what the voters are trying to say.

    The Opposition appear to have forgotten what the purpose of their existence requires. They are meant to act as Devil’s Advocate, presenting dispassionate aspects of proposed legislation which may be seen as possible contraindications for passing laws as is; they may propose modifications to improve legislation, or indeed vote against it if they see it as unfair or unworkable. But to oppose for oppositions sake, and to make personal attacks on Government members, are both unacceptable behaviors.

  6. 0
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    Ditto Aloysius, we have seen how a minority government works and that it results in poor and watered down decisions.
    Whoever wins the next election, let it be on policy, mandate and a majority for the sake of Australia!

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      I think that you have put your finger on the most significant problem – the inordinate influence of the Greens. The Greens have an agenda for a one-world government that would destroy our sovereignty and most people are unaware of it.

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      Aloysius

      Yes the Greens are a worry – what you see is not all you will get should they get more power. Many are moving towards the desire for one world government. The EU is already contemplating an EU combined defence forces.

      The Vatican is keen to see a one world economy. Worrying stuff.

    • 0
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      MEK: a cupla observations
      1 try looking up NATO with its 28 nations already onboard
      2 On Monday, October 24, 2011, the Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace published its recommendation for a globally empowered international authority over the world’s finances.This move by the Vatican may seem like simply “another academic paper” for policy wonks. But for students of Bible prophecy, the move represents possibilities of tremendous prophetic significance.
      HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAH prophesies – what a joke

  7. 0
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    Is it acceptable for the Labour Government members to make personal attacks but the the opposition must not? Really! Whoever you vote for, you are going to elect a politician.

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      Definitely NOT okay! Personal attacks from either side are out of line regardless of political persuasion. Yes, I know it’s an unrealistic ask, but of late the attacks have become worse than usual. Imagine a parliament where there was mutual respect and co-operation. Not beyond the abilities of grown-ups surely??

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      There are no statesmen anymore. Or maybe stateswomen…..

  8. 0
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    Heaven forbid if Kevin leads the ALP to the next election; they might actually stand a chance. After all, he attracted votes towards Labor at the last election only to be knifed in the back by our so called ‘elected leader’. She was not elected as leader and achieved the leadership in the most deceiptful and dishonest way. She is making a mockery of the office of Prime Minister.
    As for Malcolm; well at least he might get a little ‘mongrel’ about him and fight back against the name calling gutter politics of Labor. Doesn’t appear to be too many shady deals and characters in Malcolm’s past despite his rich boy image. Can’t trust those rich, boxer types now can we?
    I wonder if Malcolm and his lot can ever get Australia’s economy back to a surplus as quickly as Kevin’s mob ran us in to defecit?

    • 0
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      http://www.tradingeconomics.com/australia/government-budget

      adjust the From year to 1979 – it took about 5 years to claw back from deep in the red to the black line the last time the spendthrifts got their hands on the public coffers – a real true dinkum balanced non-fudged no-lies Swan surplus ? in their dreams only !!

    • 0
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      Smee: as Aloysius said, both sides are into personal attacks so your comment about “name calling gutter politics of Labor” is unfair and one-sided. As doclisa says above, the PM has been very much subject to that, probably more than anyone.
      Also Ms Gillard WAS elected as leader. It wasn’t deceiptful and dishonest. This has happened many times in both major parties – a leadership spill and vote.
      Finally, don’t forget, the main reason for the financial situation is the governmnents actions to keep us from recession during the GFC.

      The mining tax has been introduced to help with the country’s financial situation while commodity prices are high.

    • 0
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      Rod63: utter fiscal rubbish

    • 0
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      Aquatrek, I do wish you would qualify your input as opinions, not fact !

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      Rod63: sorry to go on here a bit BUT an instantaneous ALP surplus within 12 months brought about by the GFC? Surely druidic magicians at work because prior to the recent massive dive into the bright red end of the pool circa 2010 the previous red plunge in 1984 also took about 5 years to get back into the shallower deep blue end of the pool !! watch the pea under the thimble – here she goes – whiz whiz whiz where it stops nobody knows – not even Wong & Swan have a clue

    • 0
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      Michael: do pretty pictures help you get a grip on reality – try this

      http://www.tradingeconomics.com/australia/government-budget

    • 0
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      Thanks, Aquatrek, for sharing your source of information. I too will see if I can get someone to read the real writing for me.

  9. 0
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    You may admire Julia’s tenacity in hanging on to her position as PM, but that is all she has shown talent for. Kevin, on Q&A, displayed all the oratory skills that won him the 2007 election; back in the position of PM he would be just as hopeless as before he was deposed.
    In his unquestioned acceptance of anthropogenic climate change Malcolm showed the same gullibility that brought about his demise as leader of the opposition.
    What people like you, Kaye, seem unable to grasp is that the planet’s climate has always been in a state of flux due to natural forces. The belief that human activity can override all these natural forces is just another example of the same human arrogance displayed by those who think this planet and, indeed, the whole universe was created for the benefit of the human race.

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      steady on there ‘fellow’ smithjj hehe arrogant [some mentally insane on here stand out !!], gullible [‘anthropogenic global warming’ is now ‘climate change’ to protect the innocent naive and easily deceived or tricked]- and thats at least half of the homo sapien apes you have labelled !! to be fair yes the current government/s [ALP, Greens, Independants concoction] have put through many many bills and many many have passed – so that blows the description of a 110% LNP opposition stance outa da water as well. What facts do we have left to play with ? oh yeh, there WILL be a Federal election possibly sooner than later – I hope much sooner like tomorrow.

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      ps – in about 1994 Julia said that she was ‘naive’ when just a late 20’s practicing industrial relations lawyer while deeply involved in defrauding the AWU and its members plus deceiving Slater & Gordon on the side. The TV series will make the gangland and Packer ones look like kindergarten tales.

  10. 0
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    Interesting to sit back and digest each opinion expressed in these forum sessions.
    Personal biased opinion is touted as fact and so often degenerates into “He said, She said” rhetoric.
    I am reminded of Robert Quillen’s quote: “Discussion is an exchange of knowledge; argument is an exchange of ignorance”

    • 0
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      Beautifully put, Kohleria, and isn’t there a lot of “argument”

    • 0
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      Michael: you would be the resident expert on THAT wouldnt you ?

    • 0
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      I don’t think that the condescending and judgemental comments from Kohleria and Michael add anything to the discussion except an attempt to stifle more comment.

    • 0
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      Michael: olde buddy – are you so lazy and ignorant a blog ‘contributor’ that you just copy/paste one or two lines as I am pretty sure that you said precisely the same ‘opinion not facts’ statement previously to me many blogs ago. Unlike many on here I will/can/do back up my ‘opinions’ with facts wherever they are warranted. All you have to do is courteously ask if you are ‘confused’ at any point.

    • 0
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      No, Aquatrek, I just enjoy winding you up—just as you enjoy winding up Mek and others of similar ilk. To be honest I quite enjoy most of your humour!

    • 0
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      I am quite deadly serious Michael at all times hehe

    • 0
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      Michael

      That poor sad creature does not wind me up I assure you. I have put him and his grubby foolish garbage in my online garbage can. He was funny till he couldn’t help but show a side which would offend any intelligent remotely decent person. Now I just ignore him.

    • 0
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      Thats where you step in ALIEN MEK right on cue – enter stage left in biblical costume and idiot stone tablet held up for you to interpret [80% in biblical times couldn’t read nor write – ok I made the 80% up, try 90%]. You have illustrated arrogance and ignorance to the extreme with little or even no respect for the bloggers/chatters/dissenters/opposites/opinionated/cranky/disillusioned/haters/carers etc = real people on here. Try the ‘free speech’ line again or start quoting some biblical many times over translated text and you will surely feel a darn lot better. But it would be much much nicer if just once you refrained and make any sort of topical comment on the topic – Rudd v Turnbull.

    • 0
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      Michael
      See – a perfect example of rubbish. Into my bin. How do people get so twisted? Sad really.

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