Tag Archives: Mungo MacCallum

MUNGO MacCALLUM. Dog whistling about Australian values.

Housing will not be a centrepiece of the forthcoming budget, our Prime Minister assures us, while remaining vague about what, if anything, will be.  

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MUNGO MacCALLUM. Malcolm Turnbull on superannuation and housing.

But that means nothing to the ideological right, which is now shamelessly defying Turnbull on every level. Naturally Tony Abbott is front and centre of the rebellion, with most of the usual suspects on the backbench.   

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MUNGO McCALLUM. Turnbull’s Passage to India.

He may not have landed any concrete results, but he continues to give the myths and legends a good workout.  

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MUNGO MacCALLUM. Another distraction, but what a distraction.

The starting point is putting a price on carbon – some form of emissions trading policy. But this is total anathema to the coalition party room – worse even than negative gearing. 

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MUNGO MacCALLUM. Who is to blame for the last Liberal Party election failure – Turnbull or Nutt.

Malcolm Turnbull will plough ahead pushing the doors marked pull and ignoring the lessons, not just from the last election, but from all the polling since.  

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MUNGO MacCALLUM. Even in Malcolm Turnbull’s own terms, it is a fizzer.

Well it wasn’t what was hoped for, and certainly not what was required; but it was better than nothing.  

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MUNGO MacCALLUM. Free speech, Newscorp and Mark Latham.

What a craven capitulation to political correctness. What a surrender to the great values of Australian democracy, the most important of which, it needs hardly be said (although it has been incessantly by the free speakers of The Australian) is … Continue reading

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MUNGO MacCALLUM. Can Turnbull learn from Trump?

It may have been one of the few rational things Trump has done since moving into the White House, but it was considerably more decisive than the endless procrastination of our own leader, who seems determined to hang on to … Continue reading

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MUNGO MacCALLUM. Opponents of political correctness have had a ball.

The elitist couch crusaders of the far right have had a busy but productive week – so many pesky lefties to sneer at,, so much political correctness to whinge about. It was almost an embarrassment of carnage, which was just … Continue reading

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MUNGO MacCALLUM. Will Malcolm Turnbull seize the opportunity?

One Nation also copped a hiding, largely as a result of the Faustian bargain on preferences struck between Barnett and Pauline Hanson and her sinister adviser, James Ashby.  

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MUNGO MacCALLUM. Scratching to find an alternative to Malcolm Turnbull.

A corner has been turned, a bridge has been crossed, a line has been drawn. Australian politics has changed: the idea that Malcolm Turnbull could be replaced as Liberal leader is no longer unthinkable.  

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MUNGO MacCALLUM. The Abbott geyser.

Unless Malcolm Turnbull is prepared to take the pretender front on, to attempt to blow him away in the manner he is trying to dispose of Shorten, he will continue to cop the wrecking, sniping and undermining that Abbott is … Continue reading

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MUNGO MacCALLUM. Political morality and preference deals.

Turnbull, having told us that he is now an agnostic on energy policy – whatever works, by which he means whatever is good politics has now become an agnostic, even an atheist, when it comes to political morality.

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MUNGO MacCALLUM. Malcolm Turnbull’s attacks.

But the real flaw in Turnbull’s strategy is its sheer negativity. The great dominators of parliament – Menzies, Whitlam and Keating most notably – all had something to say: they were policy powerhouses, intent on changing the nation in their … Continue reading

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MUNGO MacCALLUM. Cory Bernardi and the Liberal Party.

In less exciting times, many in the Liberal Party – probably most – would have viewed the defection of Cory Bernardi with more relief than dismay. Understandably, they regard the South Australian senator as a royal (or at least monarchist) … Continue reading

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MUNGO MacCALLUM. Malcolm Turnbull on climate change and coal.

Unfortunately the storms and the heat waves are making it clear to reluctant voters that climate change is not going to disappear. Sooner or later the message will filter through even to the recalcitrants of the coalition. But by then … Continue reading

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MUNGO MacCALLUM. Trump and Turnbull.

The problem is not with America and Australia – it is with Trump and Turnbull, and more urgently with Turnbull. Sooner or later he will have to decide: does he continue as the next in line of Trump’s Aunt Sallies, … Continue reading

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MUNGO MacCALLUM. Malcolm Turnbull and Donald Trump on ‘alternate facts’.

The Trans Pacific Partnership is not worth pursuing by anyone serious – which leaves Turnbull and Ciobo, still clinging, not even to a straw, but to the open waters of internationalism.  

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MUNGO MacCALLUM. Baird and Turnbull.

Apart from his regret at losing the nearest thing to a mate among the premiers, Turnbull must be feeling more than a little conflicted, because the inevitable comparisons that will be made between the two leaders will not be in … Continue reading

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MUNGO MacCALLUM. Malcolm Turnbull and Sussan Ley.

The issue is not one of black-letter legality but ethics, if that concept has not withered away completely in the Australian parliament. Explanation, justification and excuse are utterly irrelevant in this case, and finally, many months after the report that … Continue reading

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MUNGO MacCALLUM. Turnbull on Indonesia and Israel.

The theory remains that Indonesians are all right to visit, but we still don’t regard them as full allies or equals.  

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MUNGO MacCALLUM. Malcolm Turnbull on his knees.

The recalcitrant right is, if anything, more antagonistic than ever as the season of peace and goodwill drags on. 

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MUNGO MacCALLUM. Malcolm Turnbull’s future.

The Chinese will be celebrating the year of the rooster. But for Malcolm Turnbull it is more likely to be just another year of the chicken. If not the feather duster.  

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MUNGO MacCALLUM. Malcolm Turnbull’s end of year report card.

It may well be that even if Turnbull has the will and nerve to try and move his ministry … finding convenient places to accommodate them without serious disruption will prove impossible. 

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MUNGO MacCALLUM. Federal Government failure and State Government responses.

Various premiers have finally despaired of the torpor of the Turnbull administration. .. so the states have begun to go it on their own. 

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MUNGO MacCALLUM. Malcolm Turnbull blaming everyone but himself.

The constant refrain of economists who get it wrong is that we should never rely on just one set of figures.

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MUNGO MacCALLUM. Saving democracy.

Protests are all very well, but only if they are seen to be ineffective. … It is yet another indication that serious dissent cannot and will not be tolerated. 

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MUNGO MacCALLUM. Malcolm Turnbull will do anything to secure an outcome.

Malcolm Turnbull’s experience in negotiation has been in the boardroom of Goldman Sachs, but the atmosphere of the Senate crossbench is more akin to that of the Istanbul Souk. 

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MUNGO MacCALLUM. George Brandis is a dead man walking.

What is not clear is whether George Brandis was genuinely ignorant of the implications of the tax case or whether he deliberately ignored them. In either case, he should immediately have resigned.  

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MUNGO MacCALLUM. the National Party is ‘feeling its oats’.

Mungo MacCallum writes that the National Party may not yet be out of control but it represents a far more frightening prospect to Turnbull and the Liberals than the cross-benchers ever will.

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