Saturday 2 October 2021

Morrison: No-Show at COP26? (Updated)

Scotty from Marketing likes to jet set, particularly with the Commonwealth footing the bill.

Don’t believe me? Here’s a list of his travels, off the top of my head.

In September 2019 his bromance with then President Donald Trump was blossoming.

A few months later, during the worst of the Black Summer, the east coast of New South Wales and Victoria (plus parts of South Australia, Queensland, and Tasmania) was burning. Scotty sneakily boarded a plane to Hawaii, where he spent a week on holidays. (He didn’t hold a hose, he said at his return. Let’s party, then!)

(Credit: Jamaica Inn. Source)

Since early 2020, because of COVID19, Australia’s international borders have been closed for both Australians (whether citizens or permanent residents) and foreign visitors. Last May, however, Scotty was in Cornwall, where he went to the G7 Summit (Australia is not a member, he was there apparently at France’s request). He exchanged biscuits with Boris Johnson and made sure all references to climate change were deleted from an upcoming free trade agreement between Oz and the UK.

A few weeks later he was in Paris, visiting Emmanuel Macron, his then forever friend. They discussed the now sunk French subs: the deal was on.

Last month, after tearing the French subs contract, Scotty went to the US to meet Joe Biden (together with Johnson, Scotty’s new forever friend) and the other Quad leaders (Narendra Modi and Yoshihide Suga, from India and Japan, respectively), plus sundry big wigs, among others Kamala Harris and Nancy Pelosi and – via virtual hook up – António Guterres (the UN Secretary General).


Now, after so much hopping around, Morrison says it’s unlikely he will be going to COP26. He has important business here, he explained. And – as his Hawaiian holiday shows – we know he takes domestic business very, very seriously.

Some may call Morrison’s no-show a snub to the large majority of Australians –  to say nothing of the world community – concerned with climate change. Others may see in his negative an attempt to appease the fanatical denialists in the COALition. He is notoriously averse to hard questions – as Aussie journos and commentators and politicians repeatedly noted since he took power: he may just be avoiding the questions he knows he is likely to hear at COP26. He doesn’t like to be held to account, pure and simple.

I’m sure there’s a lot of truth in all those opinions. What I am not sure is whether Morrison’s no-show is a bad thing.

Let’s face it, even if that clown were to attend, he will contribute nothing. Exactly the same goes for his minions. Naming and shaming will not work with him. Rhetoric aside, appeals to human decency or “friendship among nations” are a waste of time. Whatever commitment Australia may make lacks credibility. Unless there is a practical way – and the political will – to strong-arm Morrison’s Australia into action, I would expect nothing from him or his lackeys (much the same, I would say, applies to countries like Jair Bolsonaro’s Brazil, by the way).

Morrison’s absence, whatever ridiculous spin he may use to justify it, would at least have a virtue: it would signal to the world the true, deep contempt Morrison’s Australia holds for the common good.


I’m no lawyer, let alone a specialist in international law. Maybe what I’m going to propose makes no sense whatsoever, but let me try anyway. If you know better, set me straight. If you find any merit in the proposal, spread the word.

The international community has means – perhaps less than spectacularly effective, but existing nevertheless – to enforce its resolutions and coerce rogue nations into compliance or at least punish them for non-compliance. Apartheid South Africa and North Korea seem like good examples.

Could wanton environmental destruction be declared a crime, just like genocide, ethnic cleansing or crimes against humanity? People are already dying because of climate change and it will only get worse. Would it be possible for the international community to declare Australia a pariah state? How about international sanctions against Australian businesses and Government officials?


On another matter.

I doubt “Chinless Wonder” Joyce, who demands detailed spreadsheets showing the costs of climate change action, has received any spreadsheets detailing Morrison’s Aukus nuclear subs shitty deal.

In a country where every demand for Government spending is examined through an economic lens, Simon Birmingham, federal Minister for Finance, refuses to judge the subs on their economic merit: now, economics has nothing to say, it’s all a matter of national security. Funny that, uh?

Strategic “experts” come forward in support of the deal, using the same idiotic metaphor in the same patronising tone, as if it were evident, indisputable truth: the nuclear subs are “insurance”. Yeah, right geniuses. A life insurance that makes you more likely to die and pays the beneficiary jack shit.

Thank God at least some unions see through the bullshit:



Lauren Piko, from the ACTU, has more. There are still some pockets, isolated as you might want, of sanity in madhouse Australia.


03/10/2021. Readers may know that I feel very little love for Malcolm Turnbull, the former Liberal Party leader and PM. I’ve never made a secret of that. Perhaps that explains why I forgot to mention him here.

My dislike for the man, however, is no reason to deny his strengths. In Australia Turnbull is the kind of “conservative” relatively affluent, upper-middle class, highly educated, identitarian Leftists can love. I suppose one could call him a neoliberal on economic matters and liberal in social and cultural matters.

And I have to admit, in his time as barrister in a court of law, Turnbull must have been formidable. An articulate orator, his delivery is irreproachable; his reasoning, clear and coherent even didactic. His address before the National Press Club last week on the Aukus subs demonstrates that (transcript, video).

Without departing from the “nuclear subs are good” framing, Turnbull is a vocal and well-informed critic of the whole circus. He, however, never asked the question, let alone answer it, that has been bugging me: So, those submarines are good. Good for what purpose? Because they do not seem good to protect Australia’s immediate sea lanes.

During the question and answer following the address (not included in the transcript), Turnbull also deals with climate change. In this, too, he  beats many self-declared radical Democrats in the US.

God, can the American Left be any more pathetic?

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