As Parliament takes a two week break (again!), Turnbull is given a rest from answering questions from Shorten and leading commentators search for important things to write or talk about. As usual, ABC News continues to focus on murders – but not political ones. In Western Australia polling suggests political casualties amongst supporters of Premier Barnett, indeed the likely loss of government there, with Turnbull having made a negative contribution on his sole visit during the election campaign according to The West Australian newspaper (it described his visit as “a damp squib” and claimed he was “hopelessly unprepared, atrociously briefed or both” on what to say about WA’s share of GST grants). Instead, Turnbull has gone to Queensland supposedly to help the Nationals combat the increasing influence of Pauline Hanson there. But Nationals Leader Barnaby Joyce almost fell off his horse when he learned that Turnbull had taken a direct call from Pauline when she was meeting angry sugarcane growers and that Turnbull had apparently then agreed to discuss the issue with growers who had previously been unable to obtain a meeting with Turnbull ie his action effectively showed that One Nation has credibility with him and that the Nationals are being put aside as their vote is (supposedly) assured.
Andrew Bolt has started the “break” by writing that “many Turnbull supporters … now accept he’s finished” (see below). Bolt also outlines why Bishop would not be a suitable replacement. He lists eight reasons against her appointment as leader and lumps both Turnbull and her together as “Disloyal, few real convictions, too Left, too inarticulate and too flash to fight or talk to battlers” – and “ if you can’t tell the difference without a skirt, why swap?”.
Bolt also runs an article offering four examples as to why Australians should be frightened about statements reportedly made by four citizens viz the head of a NSW public school with mainly Muslim pupils apparently covering up jihadist-like statements by pupils, the NSW Minister for Education apparently allowing a protocol on males not needing to shake hands with females, the outlandishly biased support of aspects of Islam by the ABC, and the failure of journalists to correct statements by Shorten on the treatment of Aborigines. Such developments by people in public positions are indeed frightening.
Meantime, the independent energy market regulator (Australian Energy Market Operator) has made a damning submission to a review being undertaken of Queensland’s renewable energy target of 50% by 2030. It apparently says that lower usage of coal fired power could make the electricity network more susceptible to outages and would have a large impact on the operational aspects of the network, including security and stability. This appears to confirm its earlier conclusion on the causes of the SAus blackouts, which the SA government still attributes mainly to the weather or mismanagement by AEMO. This is an important on-going issue which the Turnbull government seems unable to deal with in a meaningful way.