Scott Morrison is having a crisis that has penetrated into everyday real-people conversation. This is a moment in which the PM’s relationship with quiet Australians is genuinely in play.
This article originally appeared in the Australian Financial Review on 4 February 2020
There’s no sugar-coating it, the Coalition is having a political crisis. A proper one, not just a Twitter beat-up; a multi-headed crisis that won’t die easily because it is about the unrenovated sports clubs people gather in, the town communities that must come together to rebuild after catastrophic fires, and the fear of the coronavirus making schools and universities feel unsafe.
The Coalition’s crisis originated in events outside its control, but it has revealed a crisis of meaning at its core. Alex Ellinghausen
Scott Morrison is having a crisis that has penetrated into everyday real-people conversation, the sidelines of sports matches, the school gate, the sandwich shop queue, the water-cooler, the Facebook mummy groups, the family WhatsApp chats. Continue reading
Greenies who back costly renewables over workable nuclear energy are doing more than anyone to keep coal in business.
This article originally appeared in the Australian Financial Review on 21 January 2020
If this is a climate emergency, then it’s time for us to demand actions that produce results.
We don’t need a royal commission into the bushfires. A royal commission would be a costly way to find out what past reviews and royal commissions have found: namely that the Australian bush is full of highly flammable trees and that, as population increases create suburban sprawl and lifestyle preferences entice treechangers into leafy regions, more people and assets are at risk.
Refusal to accept nuclear means a longer dependence on coal. Not for Syndication Continue reading
It will not be enough to announce a prudent pragmatic approach to climate change. The Prime Minister will also have to find a way to satisfy the fanatics on both sides of the climate wars.
This article originally appeared in the Australian Financial Review on 7 January 2020
The bushfires have brought out the best in Australians. And the bushfires have also shown us the worst: hysterical, inflexible, identity-obsessed and vengeful.
“This will be Exhibit A in the coming climate trials,” Greens MP Adam Bandt tweeted, above a photo of Liberals celebrating the passing of the Carbon Tax Repeal Bills. Assuming his goal is consensus on the need for climate action, he just set the cause back significantly. Continue reading
The shouty progressive left is bent on alienating the mainstream population. Too many conservatives are anxious to follow suit.
This article originally appeared in the Australian Financial Review on 11 December 2019
Sometimes you see a culture get a little bit crazier right before your very eyes. And thanks to Twitter, these moments are becoming more frequent. As the “cancel” decade draws to a close, the thumb-slamming warriors have abandoned reason itself.
In 2019, the term “cancel culture” entered the Macquarie Dictionary as its word of the year. “The attitudes within a community which call for or bring about the withdrawal of support from a public figure … usually in response to an accusation of a socially unacceptable action or comment by the figure” is a very prim way of describing a baying mob set on destroying the livelihoods of anyone who commits real or perceived transgressions. Continue reading
This article originally appeared in the Australian Financial Review on 27 November 2019
Westpac has, as Prince Andrew might say, acted in a “manner unbecoming”. And even more unbecomingly, it at first sought to scratch sand over the stinking little heap and sidle away.
As any communications professional will tell you, it’s not the crisis that kills you: it’s the response.
Prince Andrew during his BBC interview.
The time it took the Westpac chief executive and board to recognise that their problem could not be solved with cosmetic PR invites parallels to the tin-eared Duke of York, who could not see that it wasn’t the optics but the substance of his situation that left the world aghast. Continue reading