Mar 6, 2009

Costello’s mission to destroy the Liberal Party

We’re witnessing one of the lowest, most selfish and spiteful acts of political bastardry in many a year, writes Bernard Keane.

Mr Costello told the group he had set next April 2006 as the absolute deadline -- "that is mid-term" for Mr Howard to stand aside. If not, Mr Costello would challenge Mr Howard. Mr Costello said a challenge "will happen then" if "Howard is still there". "I'll do it," Mr Costello said, also saying he was "prepared to go to the backbench". Mr Costello said he would "carp" at Howard's leadership from the backbench and "destroy it" until he won the leadership.

-- Michael Brissenden, "Costello caught out on leadership comments", 14 Aug 2007.

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31 thoughts on “Costello’s mission to destroy the Liberal Party

  1. Brian

    This mirrors your comments pretty much! xx

  2. Gary Carroll

    What were the sale figures on Costello’s book ? The Private Sector had this guy pegged from the start, so the ‘Big Job’ offers did not come. He is not worthy of the attention being given him. A ‘wantabe who never was’.

  3. fehowarth

    The only thing I see consistent about Mr. Costello is his hatred for unions. He seems to have hated them from his early days at uni. I still remember pictures of him in the press, cowering in his bed after being in a fracas with some left wing fellow students. His success as a solicitor was winning several cases against unionists. As treasurer, his main aims seemed to be user pay for the low income and tax breaks for the wealthy. His other consistency is blaming others for his failures and overblown belief in his own ability. He appears as a loner as he does not seem to have the ability to attract people who support him, leading to lack of numbers that prevented him from making challenge for PM. He appears to have stayed in parliament because he cannot obtain a job in private enterprise and to get even with everyone who never gave him support. No matter that he was too lazy or disinterested to make the necessary effort earn this support.

  4. Bernard Keane

    fehowarth Costello was belted by one Michael Costa, a raving Trot from the Left faction. Costello wrote to then-Young Labor head Michael Easson to complain about it, and left Young Labor not so long afterward.

  5. Venise Alstergren

    Unlike Malcolm, Peter Costello doesn’t appear to be able to find another job.
    Would it be insane to suggest that Peter was dithering on the back bench whilst going through all the job offers. When there were none he decided he had to stick with politics–Whoa! Nobody wanted him back on the front benches. What to do? Start buggering up the Party which had rejected him. Immediately he rushed off to try religion. He fell in with a group called The Circumcision of Fire’ (something like that) who possibly threw him out as being too rich even for them. He did his usual PC cheerio by dobbing them in, for being the bl-eding ratbags they obviously are.
    Back to square one. He went into training by doing virtually nothing for a few months, then a stay at a ‘barnstopping of hatred’ rehab home. Lo he was revealed as the bitter, twisted horror that he always has been. You don’t get a mouth like that, 🙁 for nothing.
    What really is the big worry is Turnbull’s apparent inability and/or lack of support from his fellow Libs to slap him into an iron mask. He must be the only person on the planet for whom it cannot be said: better to have him inside the tent and pissing out, etc. Therefore Turnbull is justified in keeping the man on the back benches. Bitterness like Costello’s frequently ends up begetting cancer. Unfortunately for the Liberals, it won’t happen soon enough.

  6. steve martin

    At least John Howard did one thing right – he kept Costello at bay.

  7. George

    Peter Costello is news because with media exposure he has become the alternative alternative Prime Minister. Whether he really wants to be who would know, probably least of all Costello. He never seems to have known what he was doing with the leadership. Not a very good recommendation for any leadership position, least of all for a Prime Ministerial aspirant.

    The politics of Costello’s position have been analysed to boredom levels by a press always more concerned with ego clashes at the top than policy. Since by default, design or divine providence he has become the de facto alternative alternative Prime Minister it’s time to have a look at the policy he is espousing, particularly for the financial crisis.

    I am starting to understand why there is a reluctance by commentators to assess his policies for their economic viability rather than for their political implications for the leadership . It’s because the financial crisis has started to sort out the bunnies among those making economic commentary . They can’t just say what everyone else is saying like they usually do because everyone else is unsure of what is happening and there are many stories so you have to actually explain why their own scenario is feasible. That really exposes the bunnies.

    Back to our alternative alternative’s economic policies for the financial crisis. He was critical of Rudd running any deficit so therefore is against any stimulus package. He thinks leaving the old IR laws in place and delaying emissions trading are the answer. Neither would have any short term impact because the old IR laws are still currently impacting the workplace and emissions trading hasn’t started. Massively higher unemployment. and economic misery would result from his policies which are out of step with the RBA, Treasury and every country in the world. What was he doing all those years in Treasury, reading “Playboy” ?

  8. CTA

    It appears that I’m just about the only person on Crikey who still does have time for Peter Costello. Turnbull is so inert at leading that a jab every now and then from Peter is at least getting some press coverage, unlike Turnbull.

  9. Giuseppe De Simone

    Peter Costello is trying to save the Liberal Party from the Turdbull driven irrelevancy of being a faint echo of the social libertarian politically vacuous drivel that emanates from the ALP and passes as policy now-a-days. If Lindsay Tanner led the ALP, we’d have a strategic thinker (albeit a flawed one) in charge. Peter Costello fought communism when the issues were real and violence from the extremists on the left was present across all campuses in Australia. I admire and respect him for the courage to speak out and the time he has taken to consider what he believes really matters in society. He is absolutely correct when he says the industrial relations changes will diminish the chances for a quick recovery from recession because global capital will desert Australia and small business will scale back out of fear. He has earned the right to comment on Australian politics having served this country at great personal cost. His loyalty should not be seen as a weakness. He did want the leadership but he was not prepared to wreck the Liberal Party to achieve it. That was not due to a lack of spine but a lack of spite. He accepted that his colleagues had the right to make that decision even if he felt that they were wrong – that’s what democracy is all about. He didn’t want to use the tactics of a Keating or a Kennett, both leaders who destroyed their parties.

  10. Rachel

    The ABC was clearly stirring the possum by including Costello on Q and A. I do get sick of them generating their own news, but PC did himself no favours last night. Is there any chance he could be rolled in a pre-selection ballot for his own seat before the next election? His original pre-selection was probably the last time he actually contested something.

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