It had to happen. A new Prime Minister for Australia. He is Malcolm Turnbull. A rich man who doesn’t need the job but whose whole adult life has been driven to become a PM of Australia. An ex-banker and top notch legal eagle married to woman whose family is famous and highly regarded. If Australia had royalty, the late Robert Hughes of the Fatal Shores and world’s best known art critic and his QC brother Tom Hughes would both be Emperors. Our new PM’s wife is Lucy Turnbull daughter of Tom Hughes. She was Sydney’s Lord Mayor during 2003/2004. It is of course one of the oddities of our language and culture that a Lord can be a woman. It is no wonder things about the English lend themselves to great TV comedy. Of course a female Lord is balanced by a male worker in a hospital called a sister or even, if of a higher order, Matron!
No matter what, last night’s drama was played out on TV. Millions settled on their couches after about 4pm and followed the show. The world of Twitter and face-book went in overdrive. A secret ballot ( the second within six months) was taken after all the Liberal MP’s, ministers, backbencher et all filed into Parliament House. It was great drama. The triumphant Malcolm duly appeared as the victor on TV and gave it his best not to look too smug, giving due praise to the vanquished Tony Abbott whose whole life had also been geared to become a PM. He did, but was unable to see out his first term as PM. Not a good rapport card!
It seems he was unable to shake off his perceived brilliance as opposition leader and for two years as PM remained as if in opposition while being PM, continuously attacking his opposition and failing badly to come up with anything in the area of making policies. He was famous for three word slogans; The perennial ‘stopping the boats’, ‘stopping carbon tax’, ‘leaders not leaners’ and of course, ‘ jobs and growth.’ Of course, the Westminster system thrives on adversity and invites attacking in ‘holding to account’ much more than seeking consensus. He had great trouble resisting doing things on his own bat. The bizarre Knighthood to Prince Phillip was a huge blunder.
No matter what, as a human being he must be hurting badly. His ambition to be seen as a good PM now denied. He too worked towards that his whole life. He failed in becoming a Jesuit priest but overcame by entering politics. Of course, he did manage to get to the top job but his defeat last night an unimaginable and undignified knock-out blow. He would know as an ex boxer. In leading one has to take the people with you. That was something he failed in. He kept making ‘captain’s calls’ and when there was a spill and secret ballot six months ago promised to be inclusive. He said and I quote “today is the first day of a new and more inclusive Government”. As the weeks went on, things went bad. Costly helicopter flights to private functions. All and sundry dipping into allowances, hiring limousines and whooping it up in overseas first class travel with spouses in tow.
It is strange, but the present state of our Strata- adventure seemed a bit like last night’s political drama. The people were not taken in consideration. A decision to spend $40.000,- was a captain’s call by a single person if ever there was. Of course the spending of owner’s money without them knowing anything about that was ludicrous. How did anyone think they could get away with it? I had a call yesterday and spoke with the NSW’s Fair Trade and was reassured that an new meeting has to be held and that all owners have to be informed of a decision to consider painting. After that, if the majority approve, the sinking fund has to have the funds to pay for it, either by waiting or raising a special levy. Oddly enough, The dept. of Fair Trading named as Strata Manager someone I never heard off. Is there now a new manager? What happened to the old one?
We shall see.