This term of Parliament is descending into chaos, and it’s almost as though the anarchist society has taken over the Senate and House of Representatives. But it’s not the anarchist society: it’s the Liberal–National Coalition which is now resembling a thoroughly disorganised rabble. The Voter ID and Religious Discrimination Bills are in tatters – legislation that is not needed and no-one has asked for – and the national integrity commission is no closer to formation. A new Speaker was installed in the House, and it was almost like a day with the relief teacher – or the work experience kid in charge.
Chaos, division, floor-crossing and a Prime Minister who manages to speak many words in Parliament, without offering very much meaning. There’s another week – the final week – of Parliament to round off 2021, but it’s unlikely to get any better. This government is in disarray and it’s a familiar stench of incompetence and corruption that surrounds the Morrison government, that same stench that surrounded the Abbott and Turnbull governments.
Is this the end of the Liberal–National Coalition? No, not by a long shot. ‘Rabble’ is more than an adequate term to describe this government but it has to be remembered that this disorganised and disastrous troupe of under-performers won the 2016 and 2019 federal elections. All it needs is to spruce itself up for the final three months of this term and it should be in with a chance, but there are strong doubts about whether it even has this low-level ability, or the stamina, to do this. This is one very lazy government.
It’s not very often Australia hears politicians openly calling for ‘civil disobedience’ or throwing around the names of Hitler, Stalin, Pol Pot and Mao to boost their arguments. But that’s exactly what the LNP member for Dawson, George Christensen, did during the week. It’s usually in the domain of right-wing or left-wing extremists or those unsophisticated countries which resort to violence to resolve their political differences.
And that’s where we are heading: a dark place which had the same feeling as the months before the Capitol Hill insurrection in the United States, earlier this year. This is a very disturbing development: if only Australia had the political leadership to avert this impending disaster.