Let Your Hair Down, Mr Dutton

Ignore the aftermath whisperers. Magnanimity to Voice insurrectionists is neither owed nor wise

LET’s assume the Voice really is going to be defeated on 14 October and that tantrums follow – by the usual people in the usual places. Though fun to watch, the petulance won’t be as important as the moral reckoning. That’s why discussion about what Anthony Albanese and Peter Dutton should and shouldn’t take from the result has already begun. And it wouldn’t be Australia in the 2020s if glee monitors weren’t already protecting the Right Side of History by cautioning No supporters to avoid triumphalism if they win. Simon Benson, politics editor of The Australian, argued yesterday that both leaders have already been harmed by their respective stances on the referendum. There is no real evidence for this claim. For the convenience of his theme – specifically, the mawkish notion that there will be “no political winners out of this” – Benson concludes (post hoc ergo propter hoc) that a lower approval rating for the Opposition Leader in the latest Newspoll was the price of being an arch-critic. It’s more likely that voters cooled on Mr Dutton a little when they realised the Voice was on track to lose and they didn’t need him anymore.

As though it stood to reason, Paul Kelly declared on The Bolt Report last night that backers of No – especially the Coalition – must not apportion blame or play for political points if the Voice is voted down. Instead, the Opposition should be “constructive.” Bolt agreed, suggesting the LNP could, for example, come up with fresh policies to improve the lives of the most disadvantaged of Aborigines. Kelly’s admonition is sound in two ways: in the sense that an Opposition should always be crafting better solutions anyway; and because the subject matter of the referendum makes raucous partying unbecoming. Indigenous Australians have been led to believe the outcome will be a measure of the esteem in which they’re held by everyone else. This is a cheap lie but statesmanship demands that wounds inflicted by Mr Albanese and friends be salved, not salted.

Even so – and notwithstanding that Kelly has been a critic of the Prime Minister’s pet project from the start – The Australian’s editor-at-large is deluding himself if he really thinks it will be good for our polity to avoid holding the guilty to account. Voicers are extremists who cloaked vengeance in the attire of reconciliation. They didn’t manfully lay siege to democracy at the portcullis; they tried to poison the castle well using legerdemain, calumny, blackmail and – worst of all – the altruism of their compatriots. They are not Byronic heroes who did their best for a sacred cause. Peter Dutton should by all means reach out to, and represent with redoubled vim, the Aboriginal communities around the country that need to be rescued (even from themselves). He should drop absolutely the idea of a bespoke referendum on recognition. The two-faced goodwill lobby in the op-eds he should heed only slightly. It talks about pivots and paradigm shifts after Liberals lose a culture war battle but gentlemanly grace when Labor does. Don’t fall for it.

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28 Responses to Let Your Hair Down, Mr Dutton

  1. emmachisit says:

    Go on the front foot and knock a few sixes while Labor wallows in denial …

    1. Push for a full accounting and audit of current programs
    2. Introduce private members bill with devolution of Federal to State for all spending on programs, including NIAA. Evidence-based spending at local level with annual audits.
    3. Open up all programs to anyone in need, regardless of race
    4. Assign end-date for programs with limited tenure for the top managers
    5. Ask indigenous groups to design mechanism to avoid paying $$$ to non-indigenous

    Albo and Labor have opened this pandora box – now time to drive the debate in a useful direction.

  2. Mantaray says:

    emmachisit. Especially #5.

    Get Indigenous numbers back to about 200,000 by dumping all the Maltese like Lidia Thorpe, the Tongans like that fat broad, and the Indonesians like Mayo etc etc who’ve been deliberately derailing all efforts to raise the living standards of Aborigines stuck in the bush.

    When someone’s a fraud about their family background, they are sure to be frauds about almost everything else as well. And corrosive to all decent initiatives to fix stuff.
    Make Blackfellas Black Again!

  3. Cassie of Sydney says:

    As though it stood to reason, Paul Kelly declared on The Bolt Report last night that backers of No – especially the Coalition – must not apportion blame or play for political points if the Voice is voted down.

    Very nice Mr Kelly, but I’m not worried about NO supporters, on the 15the October 2023 and the days afterwards, jumping up and down brimming with victory like the Queen of Spain did after the women’s soccer final, I’m not worried about NO supporters hitting the streets and setting fire to cars to celebrate their win, and I’m not worried about NO supporters turning up at conservative functions and conferences to heckle and scream racist, racist, racist, and then to try and shut down my democratically elected rights. No, no, no, we don’t behave like that. Now, whilst there will be should not be excessive hubris on the NO side, there should be some accountability for Labor and this folly. I don’t think that on the morning of the 15th October, given the fall out of ghastly, awful and very divisive referendum, that it should be put in a box and forgotten about, as though nothing has happened. NO, this country will scarred like after after a tsunami. It is incumbent on a Coalition with any spine to attack the Labor, the Greens and others on the left for this divisive and completely unnecessary folly.

    Without a doubt, if the YES vote fails, its supporters, especially in Labor and the Greens, will harbour and apportion deep blame, and they will become thoroughly indecent towards ordinary Australians. It will be our Brexit and our November 2016. The reckoning will be fast, furious, and vicious. First cab off the rank will be the “misinformation and disinformation laws”, designed to gag ordinary men and women like those who come here.

    I reckon it’s finally dawned on Sleazy that it is all going down the gurgler, and thus he can’t wait for it to be over. His Voice vanity project has shown the country what a complete brain dead tosser he is. We all kind of knew this anyway, but so desperate were Australians in May 2022 to terminate, once and for all, Billy Bunter from the Shire, that they fell for the oldest trick in the world and voted someone worse in!

    I’m not saying Sleazy has given up entirely on the Voice, like the religious faith he abandoned long ago, he clings.

    Just remember, nobody hates like the left. We will be punished for our disobedience. And Sleazy, the boy from Marrickville, is our very own “Tory slaying” man, he hates us Tories, he hates us conservatives. Once spotted and pictured filming “smash her” at a female Coalition member (misogyny never counts when they do it, in progressive world looking at a watch is considered more misogynistic than shouting “smash her” at a woman), he will declare war on us, and it won’t be “smash her”, it’ll be……

    “smash them, smash them, smash them”.

  4. calli says:

    Thanks Cassie.

    The preemptive finger wagging about unseemly glee and relief should No win is hilarious, or would be if it wasn’t so sinister.

    I have no doubt the flames of hatred will be fanned by disgruntled Yes losers, and in some places there will be vandalism and even violence. They know that they will be protected after all.

  5. Rafiki says:

    Governments can only do so much. The Abiriginal industries rackets will only be significantly reined in if the rest of us take its depredations seriously and there is a backlash. I think the public exposure of the urban- based Aboriginal “elite” will have some such effect. The ugly faces and manners of Langton, Pearson, Davis, Mayo and their ilk compare badly to Jacinta and Mundine. The LNP need to promote and protect the latter two.
    One action the LNP might promote, and take when they can, ( such as, perhaps, after the next Qld election), is a financial accounting of where the money has gone. The results would waken the rest of us.

  6. Christine says:

    Cassie 7:24
    There’s the only comment I’ve ever seen on that victory-jumping display by the Spanish queen. It sure looked low-class.

    Imagine the whooping if the Yes backers got their way.
    But the No backers must behave.
    Paul Kelly instructs.

  7. Wally Dalí says:

    It’s more likely that voters cooled on Mr Dutton a little when they realised the Voice was on track to lose and they didn’t need him anymore.
    Or, like me, voters think his brainf*rt idea of a second referendum, which would be the third on “recognition”, betrayed him as being quite simply a ninny.
    Kelly’s admonition is sound in two ways:
    This is why I look at your site daily, C.L. Beautiful writing, propping Kelly with a well-observed Kellyism.

  8. Buccaneer says:

    Dutton needs to remind voters at every opportunity that Albanese only promotes division and stokes conflict for political advantage, then propose solutions.

    The reason he’s dropped in the polls is because he suggested he would do a rerun of the voice by referendum. No one wants that, the constitution was never about recognition for one group of people, he needs to shelve that rubbish.

  9. Christine says:

    “financial accounting”
    Rafiki 7:46

    If I’d been wanting this Voice to succeed, I would’ve been very worried about the “Where has all the money gone” factor.
    I’d be thinking of all those voters who won’t look any further; they’ll make their decision on this alone.

  10. Christine says:

    Forgot to say: This is another really great column, thank you

  11. Baba says:

    Indigenous grants are already financially audited up the wazoo.

    The waste has other causes.

    Take the provision of remote community housing. Houses can have a service life of less than 10 years despite a fortune being spent on repairs.

    Or baby health centres built by health departments which include private decks where community support staff can while away their days smoking cigarettes and drinking tea, out of sight.

    The outstation program was probably the gold medal winner for waste.

    Special mention to the Queensland Aboriginal Affairs department Commodore which arrived back in Mount Isa after a trip across the NT border with 4 mismatched bald tyres, no spare and a very used auto gearbox.

  12. C.L. says:

    The ugly faces and manners of Langton, Pearson, Davis, Mayo and their ilk compare badly to Jacinta and Mundine. The LNP need to promote and protect the latter two.

    Indeed. Re Jacinta (she already has one-name status), it has been a rare joy to watch the emergence of a leader. The Sky documentary centered around her family and its tragedies was one of the best I’ve watched for a long while. There’s a story in The Australian today about how she and Dutton are campaigning for No on the road at the moment; the people are flocking to Jacinta. Dutton – a humble, good man – acknowledges he’s in her shadow in the Voice arena.

  13. C.L. says:

    Peter Dutton gets a front-row seat at the Jacinta Price show.

    It’s not often Peter Dutton is upstaged by a member of his own team, but this is the Jacinta show and there’s no question who they are here to see in Dubbo.

    With barely a year in federal parliament under her belt, Jacinta Nampijinpa Price has emerged as the star of the campaign to reject the Indigenous voice, filling pubs and halls wherever she goes.

    The Opposition Leader joined her and Nat­ionals leader David Littleproud on the hustings in central west NSW on Tuesday buoyed by opinion polls showing the No case was on track to prevail in the Oct­ober 14 referendum.

    The pace of the campaigning is certainly picking up. After flying in from distant Moree, Mr Dutton said his newly minted spokeswoman for Indigenous Australians was a hard act to follow.

    Asked if he risked being overshadowed by appearing with her, he said: “There is every danger. We are upstaged by Jacinta Price every day, well before the campaign started.”

  14. struth says:

    Dutton is as useless as tits on a bull.

    The Liberal/ Labor Uniparty are one and the same.
    Globalist controlled.

  15. dover_beach says:

    Dutton should let Jacinta do the running in fashioning a post-No victory re Voice if that comes about, while taking to task the swineherd that have attacked her and others in the political and media realm.

  16. Tezza says:

    As Wally Dali notes, it is clear the dip in Dutton’s personal popularity exactly matches the timing of his idiotic idea of a second referendum after the voice referendum fails.

    We are just sick of this racial essentialism and want it finished.

  17. and says:

    No supporter Anthony Mundine says he wants to fight Voice architect Thomas Mayo: ‘He needs to be taught a lesson’.

    ‘Us men have to stand up so I want to challenge him into the ring.’

    Mundine urged Mayo to take him on. ‘Let’s go man and get it on!’ he continued.

    ‘He says he’s a combat man, I’m an ex-fighter. I’m getting on in age, I’m probably older than him.’

    ‘I wanna beat him up real good. He needs to be taught a lesson.’

  18. emmachisit says:

    Financially audited is one thing i.e. “we spent all the $$$”. Sure that happens.

    Audit for effectiveness is another e.g. “we reduced prem baby health stats from X to Y%” or “we introduced clean reliable water to X locations covering Y people at cost of Z per location which is 10% less than last year”.

    And % spent on admin and indirect costs would be interesting.

  19. jupes says:

    Or, like me, voters think his brainf*rt idea of a second referendum, which would be the third on “recognition”, betrayed him as being quite simply a ninny.

    Well, I didn’t like him from the start, but that “brainfart” was stupid beyond belief. What was (is?) he thinking?

  20. Lee says:

    Some hilarious stuff from the has-it-back-to-front Australian.

    There should be far more concern about the reaction whether Yes loses or wins, than if No wins or loses.

    In fact, win or lose I expect the No camp to be far more gracious than the Yes camp.

    This is the sort of spin I would expect from Yes camp supporters trying to cover themselves for after the referendum, just like the Democrats before the 2020 election warning against claims of election fraud, post-election (after doing precisely that themselves for nearly four years).

  21. Lee says:

    I am sick of the attitude of some conservatives and right wingers that we have to be somehow apologetic or in sympathy with the left when we have a (all too rare these days) victory over them.

  22. jupes says:

    It will be a pyrrhic victory. Stand by for the national equivalent of the WA heritage laws. Also, the uniparty will support some sort of ‘recognition’ in the constitution and craven Australians will vote for it.

  23. Tom Atkinson says:

    One thing that must be said about Dutton:

    He decided to oppose “the voice”. Looking back, it seems like an easy decision, but at the time, I was surprised that the party had shown some balls.

    Was fully expecting the LNP to go along with it.

  24. Christine says:

    Peter Dutton did oppose “the voice”
    at a time when Linda Burney was falsely (and sweetly) presenting their plan as nothing but a gracious offer to be accepted by Australians – because ‘goodwill’.

  25. Wally Dalí says:

    If Dutton had opposed the voice like many here, on instinct and principle, then a three word slogan would spring to mind, like Abbott’s “Stop the Boats”. I’d go for “Infantilization is Misery”, or “Separatism Breeds Corruption”. “Never was, never will be Apartheid in Australia.” Go hard, go early- he might have been hated for it, but it would be the Devil They Know.
    Allow me to tap the sign-
    It ain’t hard- he just wants to be liked.

  26. Buccaneer says:

    Dutton needs to go hard on Albanese for prioritising designing the rugby league premiership ring over campaigning for the failing voice referendum, he’s stoked the division and now he’s got better things to do.

  27. SydGal says:

    Still on the ground handing out no brochures and the Yes campaigners are out in full force. Yesterday there were 7 of them at a large train station. One of them said I was harassing people and spreading misinformation! But we talked and made up and then he wanted to hug me!! I opted for the elbow thingy. How odd that Lib HQ has not yet provided the Lib volunteer list (from email sent weeks ago with links for yes and no volunteering). It’s 2 working days from the start of pre-poll.

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