Monday, September 21, 2015

Malcolm Turnbull as Salesman.


New PM Malcolm Turnbull last night, interviewed by Leigh Sales (ABC's 7:30 Report Sep. 21):
LEIGH SALES: "(…) What are the values and core beliefs that will be the foundation for all of the policies that your government comes up with?"
MALCOLM TURNBULL: "Well, this is a Liberal National government. It is a free market government. It is committed to ensuring that Australians are free to choose their own directions, whether it's in their business or their profession or their family. So they've got to - so freedom is the - freedom is the key point. I mean, it's perhaps a bit simplistic, but one way you can say it - you can describe it is that the Liberal Party, and I could make the same point about the National Party too, our coalition partners, we believe that government's job is to enable you to do your best. Labor, which has more faith in government, believes that government's job is to tell you what is best. So - so that's a fundamental thing."
Just like I said last week.

After that, maybe to sooth viewers like yours truly:
LS: "(…) What do you say to Australians who might think, 'Well how can Malcolm understand what it is to struggle for anything 'cause Malcolm's had everything that he's ever wanted?'."
MT: "Well, the truth is I have been extraordinarily lucky. I have had to struggle in my life. I didn't - I wasn't born with a silver spoon in my mouth, by any means. (…) Look, I'll give you an example. I remember when I was a partner of Goldman Sachs in New York, very successful investment bank, everyone was earning very big money, the chairman, the chief executive of the firm gave a sort of pep talk to the partners and he said, you know, 'We're doing well. We're making lots of money 'cause we work hard and we deserve it.' And I said to him afterwards, just quietly, I said, 'You know, there are taxi drivers in this city that work much longer hours than anyone does here and they don't earn very much at all.' So, the truth is, we don't really deserve our good fortune. (…)"
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Incidentally, rather disappointingly -- but ultimately predictably -- Turnbull launched the already trite salvo against the all-powerful unions and the Labor party:
"Now, you know, the Liberal Party (…) is the largest grassroots political movement in Australia. It is not run by any unions or big businesses or factions. (…) Our party room members do not come from one professional political class like most of Labor's do."
Ironically, this happened one week after opposition leader Bill Shorten threw the union movement under the bus, offering the new Turnbull government a peace deal on ChAFTA.

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I won't deny the guy is charming (ask Leigh Sales: video). He speaks well, is quite personable, smiles a lot. I'm sure he may be a formidable salesman.

That doesn't mean you want to buy his wares.

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