- The Guardian
- Issue #2017
It is unfathomable to think that a man who was Prime Minister no less than three months ago has so thoroughly dismissed the institution he led for almost four years. Yet, here we are with former Prime Minister Scott Morrison telling a congregation at Margaret Court’s Victory Life Centre (a Pentecostal church) to not “ trust in governments” and “don’t trust in the United Nations.”
“We don’t trust in all these things, fine as they may be and as important as the role that they play. Believe me, I’ve worked in it and they are important. But as someone who’s been in it, if you are putting your faith in those things as I put my faith in the lord, you’re making a mistake. They are earthly, they are fallible. I’m so glad we have a bigger hope.”
Responding to these comments Prime Minister Anthony Albanese expressed shock, stating that:
“This guy was the Prime Minister of Australia and had that great honour of leading the government. I find it astonishing that in what must have been, I guess, a moment of frankness, he’s said he doesn’t believe in government. It provides some explanation perhaps of why, in my view, he clearly didn’t lead a government that was worthy of the Australian people. I believe that government does play a role in people’s lives and our living standards. I say to young people all the time, get involved, because government will impact on the quality of your life.”
Albanese is not speaking any untruths here. However, he shouldn’t be surprised. Morrison’s tenure as Prime Minister was marked from start to finish by the scepticism of institutions that merely pointed out inconvenient facts to Morrison’s ideological spin.
When it came to climate change, Morrison consistently denied the science. Morrison told the country that his government was on track to reduce emissions by 30-35 per cent by 2030 — a target climate experts deem to be too low.
When it came to the COVID-19 pandemic, Morrison challenged the medical advice. The science was in about COVID-19, and yet Morrison gambled with this nation’s health, botching a deal on vaccines when Australia – an island nation – had every opportunity to minimise the impact of the health crisis.
More than this, if any government is not to be trusted, it was one run by Morrison. The Prime Minister consistently failed to tell the truth.
Again, on climate action, Morrison stated that at COP26 that Australia’s emissions dropped by twenty per cent since 2005. This was marketing spin from a world leader who refused to address carbon emissions. According to the Climate Council:
“Three quarters of Australia’s emission reductions since 2005 have come from changes in land management (in other words, not cutting down as many trees). When it comes to reducing emissions from electricity and moving beyond fossil fuels, Australia has made almost no progress.” (emphasis theirs)
Returning to the pandemic, when it came to the vaccine rollout Morrison backflipped. In March 2021, Morrison unveiled a vaccine rollout plan that by July twenty million Australians would have their first jab. Yet, when questioned Morrison lied, stating that “the suggestion that somehow there was a vaccination rate that would have put us in a different position right now to what was planned last year is simply not true.”
The working class has every reason to be sceptical of capitalist governments. However, when it comes to science, where the scientific community is in large agreement, it is important that our governments be proactive and help improve our lives. It is clear now as it was then that Morrison had no intention of helping the lives of working-class Australians and it appears that the next liberal mob run by liberal leader Peter Dutton will be no different.