Feb 072007

Malcolm Turnbull reckons:

"Many of us have water tanks and it’s all very commendable … but it’s not going to solve the problem by itself. If we go it alone and clean up our own back yard … that may be commendable, it may be admirable, but it will have no impact unless it is matched by global action. And we could pay a very heavy price, a very heavy sacrifice indeed."

So, as Bannerman reads Turnbulls outburst, doing one’s own thing, one out, isn’t going to make a dot of difference to the ultimate outcome of climate change/global warming which according to his fearless if aurally dyslexic leader may or may not be real. It would seem that Malcolm Turnbull is throwing away the skills which presumably made him the millionaire he is. That one-out, damn-the-torpedos, grab-ones-gonads-in-both-hands-and-jump attitude backed by an innate sense of success. Is Malcolm losing his touch? Did he ever really have it, politically at least? Remember, reader, this is the man that so desperately wanted into Parliament, he punted on a Labor Party parachute. Said parachute was never on the table, so he opted for the ’other mob’ instead.

Looking closer, one gets the distinct impression that the Howardians poo-hoo the efforts of the citizens they claim are the victims of state Labor governments (Senate Hansard transcript to be available 08/02/2007). Victims of successive state government failures to plan we all may be, but a federal government minister making light and belittling the efforts of those it already claims as victims is hardly the way to win those victimised hearts and minds. Then of course, there’s ye olde scare tactic. ’…we could pay a very heavy price, a very heavy sacrifice indeed…’ . Indeed. What kind of very heavy price, Malcolm? What other sacrifice do you envisage, apart from the bucketting of water onto precious gardens by frail pensioners? Ye Gods, are we to be faced with legislated alternate bathing days under the supervision of water usage inspectors??! Are showers of any duration to be outlawed??! Perhaps the rich, such as yourself, can have what water they can buy in, while the rest of the undefined scum will simply stink!

This kind of rhetoric, reader – and make no mistake, that’s all it is – doesn’t bode well for the Howardian machine. At least in the eyes of your Bannerman. Turnbull hasn’t managed to open his gob since making the big time without putting his size 10 fairly and squarely in it. He was making some reasonable, if tentative headway on water issues from a conservative political perspective. His was a voice in the wilderness and one which was making favourable political waves. Since making the front bench though, Turnbull hasn’t managed to mouth anything of consequence, except saliva on shoe leather. Top his faux pas off with those of his fearless, if aurally dyslexic leader during yesterday’s question time in the House, and you’re left with a rather empty shell on the issues surrounding climate change and water security. Still, this is all grist to the mill. It’s early days and as we all know, a day in politics is a long time. Bannerman wonders just how many days Turnbull has left.

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