Another Spectrum

Personal ramblings and rants of a somewhat twisted mind

Another Aussie PM bites the dust

8 Comments

Unlike the USA, our neighbours across the ditch have no problem with disposing of political leaders when a party decides that keeping the current Prime Minister is not in their (and perhaps the nation’s) best interests. In fact, Australia has just appointed a new Prime Minister – their seventh since the beginning of the millennium. Of the previous six, four were deposed by their own party.

This seems to have become “standard practice” as both major political parties indulge in the deposing of political leaders while in office. Of course, a change of Prime Minister usually results in a major cabinet reshuffle, and frequently sees some change in government direction.

Prime Minister Term ended How
Howard, John 03 Dec 2007 Lost Seat at General Election
Rudd, Kevin 24 Jun 2010 Deposed
Gillard, Julia 27 Jun 2013 Deposed
Rudd, Kevin 18 Sep 2013 Defeated at General Election
Abbott, Anthony 15 Sep 2015 Deposed
Turnbull, Malcolm 24 Aug 2018 Deposed
Morrison, Scott

In a parliamentary style of government such as Aotearoa New Zealand, Australia, the UK, and Canada have, the roles of Head of State and the country’s top political post are held by different people, but I wonder how many Americans envy the ease by which Australia can replace the person holding nation’s top political role, especially in the light of their current leader being Trump.

Should impeachment, death or incapacity be the only means by which a president can be replaced, or would it be better if presidents could be replaced on other grounds? America does have a problem in that presidents are elected for a fixed term, instead of a maximum term, and if the president is removed, then the vice president takes over. This is not an issue with deputy Prime Ministers, as they do not take over as Prime Minister except in a caretaker role while a new Prime Minister is chosen. However I suspect those who would like to see Trump go, would be equally unlikely to want to see Pence take over the presidency.

Author: Barry

A post war baby boomer from Aotearoa New Zealand who has lived with migraines for as long as I can remember and was diagnosed as being autistic aged sixty. I blog because in real life I'm somewhat backwards about coming forward with my opinions.

8 thoughts on “Another Aussie PM bites the dust

  1. You are correct about Pence. A dangerous religious far right nut! He and his lunatic base would start to impose Christian Sharia law. With the current trump cult, we are on the precipice here of losing everything the founding fathers invisioned.

  2. The main bone of contention between Turnbull and the right-wingers in his party appeared to be energy and environmental policy. Apparently, the now ex-PM just didn’t have enough fossil fuels running through his blood. That seems to be a rather weak reason to dispose him.

    The importance of getting Trump out of the White House has nothing to do with how bad a president Pence might be. Trump, besides being mentally and emotionally unfit for the office, appears to have committed egregious criminal acts and is on the verge of obstructing justice in the most blatant manner. According to America’s governmental system, no one is above the law and Trump should be held accountable as a matter of principle.

    • I admire your confidence in America’s governmental system. However, I don’t think there would be many (if any) governmental systems where anyone is above the law. History has shown that potential tyrants ignore or abuse constitutions and statutes and bully or terrorise their way through opposition. I don’t think the US is any more immune to the abuse of power than other democracies. Already the Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU) ranks the US as a “flawed democracy” and from my perspective, in the (relatively) peaceful South Pacific, the extreme polarised viewpoints and rhetoric that emanates from America does seem beyond what is healthy. With a Republican majority and a stacked Supreme Court, and a third of the country being Trump worshippers, he could be difficult to remove especially as he believes he’s the best president America has ever had.

      • On the contrary, I do not have confidence in America’s governmental system. It is indeed failing as you correctly pointed out. But, don’t I as an American citizen have the civic obligation to expect it to work? Should I not have the expectation that Trump will be held accountable for his criminal behavior? What should I do, give up and keep my mouth shut?

        • You should have the expectation that Trump will be held accountable, and hopefully with enough people like you, he will. Otherwise it will be the next generation, or the one after that, who will be cleaning up the mess. Because of the power the US holds, small nation states can be really harmed by the actions of America, as can be clearly seen in the middle east today. In fact the US can have a devastating impact on the lives of ordinary people that is barely imaginable by Americans at home. What I don’t want to see is for Trump to divert attention away from his own problems by creating new ones elsewhere. One only needs to look at the the international treaties and agreements that Trump has either ignored, walked out on or broken to understand that while he might be able to be reigned in domestically, that doesn’t apply outside US borders.

          Sorry if my thoughts are a little bit disjointed. I’m just getting over a migraine I’ve had for the last 2 days, and I’m still finding it difficult to bring my thoughts into focus.

  3. The one thing I don’t understand here in America is why no one sues the President, such as for example for slander or hate speech. I thought there are laws and I thought the laws apply to everyone.
    Can he not be sued?
    Besides that, your blog is interesting and the Australian way of doing things seems better than to wait around until the world/country/society/environment as we know them are destroyed.
    However, pushed to an extreme you get another Italy, where PMs often don’t last a year… LOL

    • In Italy, it’s not the Prime Minister that’s deposed, it’s the entire government! In Australia, it’s the governing party that replaces its parliamentary leader, but the government does not change. In Aotearoa New Zealand, political parties tend to replace their parliamentary leaders when in opposition. It’s quite rare for a party to depose of a party leader while in government. If a sitting Prime Minister quits, it’s more likely to be for personal reasons and not because he/she no longer has support of the party.

      I might be wrong, but I didn’t think that there was any specific regulations regarding hate speech in America. Regardless, there is a fine line between freedom of expression and inciting civil unrest. Here in NZ hate speech is loosely defined as that which incites persons to do harm to others. As far as I’m aware there has never been a prosecution, let alone a conviction for hate speech here.

      I don’t know how the law stands in the USA, but here some speech is privileged, meaning no matter what the speaker says, that person cannot be sued. An example of this is in Parliament where all speech is privileged. However, Parliament has its own rules on what is permitted to be said and how it can be expressed.

      • Interesting.
        Thank you, Barry.
        I’m not sure how the laws are in the USA and, to tell the truth, I’ve started just minding my own business, since I’m “only” a legal resident, not a citizen, and one cannot know how “good” a seat that might be in the present political climate.
        Unfortunately, also, the laws keep changing and I wonder how the courts keep up… LOL

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