Meet the new boss, same as the old boss

Peter Matters writes: Re. “Voter shifts put pressure on Turnbull’s unheroic targets” (yesterday). The Tony Turnbull government can hardly be expected to do any more about clean power. A Malcolm Turnbull government may or may not do a little better. Labor, however, should have the guts and vision to do a great deal better than the 45% reduction of pollution..

Rupert Murdoch and his gutter press/shock jocks combine brilliantly achieved to brainwash a sufficient section of the electorate to allow Rupert to instal his puppet as prime minister thanks to polls which destroyed Julia Gillard’s government on the basis of consistent unscrupulous malice — NOT on her government’s creditable performance.

Well, things have changed. When the electorate put their thinking caps on, they will always come to thoughtful and appropriate conclusions. Right now, we the people have worked out that we have been fooled. Rupert’s  man will in the future be known as a buffoon, he himself has been exposed as an elderly has-been, his gutter press and shock jocks are losing adherents in large numbers. In short, the structure of his demagoguery has collapsed.

Clean energy is only the beginning of the multitude of changes we all must face, if we don’t want our little planet to turn into a half dead global garbage dump before the end of the century. If we keep on trading the values within us for values we buy in the shopping centre, we may well be the first species of mammal to commit mass suicide.

The basic cause of all our problems is the rat race caused by the decadent, profligate, out of control consumerism we live by. We manufacture not only far too many goods, we also make the wrong ones. The great majority of houses/apartments are built by developers and builders who have been very successful in  persuading us to accept  as our dream homes products with the advice to outdo the Jones’ next door. They could be built 20-30% cheaper and incomparably more liveable yet smaller to form tightly knitted communities, but the information for doing so is not freely available.

Instead of being convenient means to get from A to B, our cars are not only far too powerful and far too big but also treated as a means to outdo the Jones as is just about any product we might buy. Much of our population of twenty three million live in the two megacities where we have lost the benefit of extended families, where the rat race causes many impressionable young and older people to lose their emotional — and often mental — equilibrium, a problem which our ignorant governments make much worse by spending billions on a mad building boom of prisons, where they keep prisoners at $120,000 p/a per prisoner — notwithstanding the fact that prisons create criminals.

In the megacities we also breathe toxic air and eat packaged food guaranteed to be unhealthy. The multinationals have free reign to produce toxic merchandise not only to damage our own health but actually destroy natural equilibriums, killing birds and bees and thereby destroying our food supplies, setting on fire millions of square kilometers of precious forests to plant palm oil, a necessary ingredient  of questionable packaged foods, etc.

Under the direction of a courageous and visionary government which has eaned our respect, all these dangerous problems could be met and solved on the basis that all of us would accept to radically change our lifestyle. Now, such a government will have the people on their side. Note also that people do not object to paying taxes: they object to paying taxes to governments they don’t respect. I cannot see a Turnbull government achieving such respect.


On Credlin

Terry Mills writes: Re. “Why the media are so fascinated by Peta Credlin” (yesterday). It was not only the media who were/are fixated about Credlin.

In January the New York domiciled media mogul found time in his busy schedule to publicly call for Credlin to resign or, failing that, for Abbott to sack her. Whilst we knew that Rupert had some influence in Coalition circles I don’t think that many of us understood that this extended to the minutiae of our Prime Minister’s staffing arrangements.

Both Abbott and Credlin ignored the directive from New York and now they’re both gone. Coincidence? Perhaps, perhaps not.

Peter Fray

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Peter Fray
Editor-in-chief of Crikey