Prime Minister Tony Abbott promised this prior to gaining office :
…and the commitment that I’ve been giving to the Australian people is that there’ll be no surprises and no excuses under a Coalition government.
Source: May 21, 2013 – Joint Doorstop Interview, Bundamba, Queensland
It was, of course, a ludicrous promise to make. There is nothing as constant as change, and any credible adult government must deal with change that may at times cause decisions to be reviewed, and commitments to be re-assessed. The Abbott government has spectacularly failed to demonstrate this fundamental adult coping skill, not least in Abbott’s fantastical undertaking to protect us from the inevitable surprises of inevitable change in the first place.
While on the one hand using that refuge of scoundrels the old “situations change” line to excuse broken promises and commitments he never intended to keep, Abbott continues to cling to his no surprises and no excuses mantra. He can’t have it both ways. If he wants unexpected situational change (surprise) to explain his backflips, he can’t have a commitment to no surprises as well. Hell, he needs surprises to explain his changes, because nothing else credibly achieves that.
Promising citizens there will be no surprises is elephant excrement, unless we’re all about to die, in which case we can reasonably expect there likely won’t be anymore surprises, not in this world anyway.
Annabel Crabb noted that in the first three months of Abbott taking office his party could well be renamed “The Surprise Party.” The broken promises and unexpected decisions just keep on keeping on.
If he wants to continue to claim that his is a “no excuses” government, Abbott is going to have to stop blaming the ALP for every difficulty the LNP encounters. They’ve been in office for over twelve months now. No government can blame its predecessor indefinitely, otherwise political rhetoric will come to consist entirely of what they did made us do what we did, or some infantile variation on that tiresome theme. Anyone involved in the management of children knows the old he/she started it is a path to hellish infinity that endears the instigator to nobody.
“The ALP made me do it” is no way to run a country. If you are making changes because a situation has altered since you took office, how is that the responsibility of the previous government? If these changes are genuine, why not clearly explain them? Any other approach is an excuse that insults the intelligence of all thinking people.
LNP narrative consists almost entirely of unpleasant surprises and excuses for them, or really only one excuse: the ALP made us do it. Did this government know nothing before it was elected? Was it so naive, so ill-informed, so out of touch that it took office as if newly born into political life? Doesn’t it know every government has to deal with the decisions of its predecessor and that we don’t actually care about that, it’s part of their job description and we expect them to stop whining and get on with it?
This government urgently needs to grow up and understand the serious responsibility they have towards the citizens of this country. We need a government that has at least achieved tertiary standards of development, and not one that is still toilet training in day care.