#identitypolitics

She might be the 2nd but by far the worst

Theresa May will resign. Finally. Utter disaster in the top job. No conviction. No moral authority. No judgment. Little support from her colleagues. No respect for the referendum. Destroyer of the Conservatives. Duplicitous EU supporter. Prepared to propose a deal to submit the British people which might as well have been an unconditional surrender to Brussels. No-one will miss her vacuous leadership. Probably the worst PM in UK history.

She may like to think that she was “the second female prime minister, but certainly not the last” but what has gender got to do with it? 17.4mn Brits would have been happy to have a transgender PM if ze could have executed Brexit. Identity politics was the last thing on their minds.

When the next female PM graces 10 Downing St it is likely she’ll seek inspiration from Maggie not May.

Keep calm and move along.

Brain dead anoint the brainwashed

The University of Mons in Belgium will anoint 16yo Greta Thunberg with an honorary doctorate in October this year. Will this trigger participation doctorates for all kids who sing the climate emergency tune?

It ranks up there with all of the justification that led to Obama’s Nobel Peace Prize 9 months into his presidency. Literally none. It is pure virtue signaling. It reflects on the university’s clear preference for closed debate.

What troubles CM is that the soon to be Dr Thunberg will be abused even more by those pushing the climate narrative. She is the perfect human shield to the divisive machine that lurks begins her. It is hard to criticize a movement when the face is a child.

She faces either nothing happening with the climate and being exposed as brainwashed. Or the policies she espouses will lead to such a miserable existence that life will be even more miserable that it is now.

This is not to criticize Thunberg per se. She is undoubtedly a very brave girl to face world leaders with a scripted message.

However there is something so Soviet about the way she is the face of the climate change movement, which is the effective trendy thing to be much like socialism was in the 1980s.

Thunberg is a great example of how schools are corrupting young minds. Whether climate change, gender fluidity or cross dressing days, these things have nothing to do with balanced education and critical thinking.

What a surprise to see Sweden’s PISA education scores falling in mathematics, science and reading. Scarily below Australia which has been on a long term decline too.

Naturally the media will overlook this and chant “progressivism” as the way of the future despite their own socialist rhetoric clearly point to “extinction”.

Saving the planet starts after her maiden speech.

Many of the 1,000+ Zali Army apparently want to hear Zali Steggall make her maiden speech in parliament. Instead of streaming it, plans are being made to put them on coaches to make the 300km to Canberra and back. So much for the 60% emissions reductions targets. Perhaps she’ll start the clock after the buses arrive back in Sydney. Do as I say, not as I do!

Post election exodus to NZ? The stats

There is much humour to learn that post last Saturday’s election, 512 Aussies have apparently made applications to register for a New Zealand visa. 25x the number of May 12. Given Aussies do not require visas to work or live there, so one might question these people need to study our neighbor more closely. Perhaps speak to Jane Caro who wishes she was a New Zealander.

According to the Australian Bureau of Statistics there are 568,000 New Zealanders in Australia, or more than double the total 3-decades ago. Therefore more than 11% of the Kiwi population lives in Australia. At last census count 35,000 New Zealanders migrated to Australia in 2018.

According to the New Zealand Statistics Bureau, 38,700 Aussies live in New Zealand. In the January 2018 year, 24,900 migrants arrived from Australia and a similar number departed for Australia.

Stats NZ stated, “Over half of migrants arriving from Australia are actually returning Kiwis who have been living across the Tasman for more than a year…The number of migrants going back and forth to Australia in the past year almost balanced each other out – the net gain was just 40 people in the last 12 months.

Statistically, Australia has 5x NZ’s population but we have 14.7x the number of Kiwis living on our shores. Presumably because it offers more opportunity. So to the Morrison haters, NZ awaits you. CM is betting you’ll be like all those Hollywood celebrities that promised to leave the US after the 2016 election. They’re all still there.

ALP, first find a purpose before you choose your next leader

On what planet does Shadow Treasurer Chris Bowen honestly believe he is a viable candidate for the ALP leadership? Of course the Coalition welcome such an appointment as they’ll be guaranteed another 3 years in government. Does Bowen believe that the electorate will grant what he calls a “blank canvas” and give him a fair go? Like any good retail store, the best assets are put on display where people can see them first. If the repudiated policies of the election just finished were the best he had to offer, what hope has he got ‘connecting’ with the base? Will this be the “these were the policies I wanted but Bill Shorten didn’t let me run them” campaign? If that were so Bowen stands for nothing so will fall for anything,

Bowen co-led the most dreadful campaign. Telling hope owners to forget if their houses slipped into negative equity and throwing two fingers up at self-funded retirees telling them if they didn’t like it not to vote for Labor. At least that message cut through.

Tanya Plibersek withdrew her nomination stating she “wasn’t ready”. Is that what a deputy for 6 years does when her boss vacates the top job? She clearly sees the next 3 years as toxic. So her loyalty to party is limited to her own ambitions of taking the top job once other members of the team have become political cadavers. CM spotted her pre-election in Hermes in Sydney so she is most definitely a champagne socialist.

Anthony “Albo” Albanese is the true Labor man who has never been given a title shot. He too is of the left, but he is eminently likable. He is a down to earth battler. However will his party see him as one to lead them back out of political oblivion? The hard left has been the problem.

Then that leaves Jim Chalmers. He is young. Served as an advisor to Rudd. He was pretty ordinary on Q&A last night. He won’t prosecute like Albo can.

The ALP first has to find a purpose before it selects a leader. If it does it the other way around it will only foul up the works and elevate the chaos this unlosable election has already brought upon them. To make a rash choice and then in-fight over policy direction will turn them into a carbon copy of the US Democrats

The lesson was loud. The electorate rejected radical climate change policy, punishing pensioners, identity politics, class warfare and the politics of envy. That Chris Bowen thinks he can lead the party back from the pits of despair with that legacy behind him means he is more delusional than Malcolm Turnbull.

It is worth remembering that experience is a hard teacher. You get the test first and the lesson afterwards.

Zali, best ask Lisa Wilkinson for Jacinda’s number. You might need it

Zali Steggall proclaimed she would fight for her signature campaign promise – “climate change” – and hold the government to account on the environment in her victory speech. She won her seat in CM’s own electorate of Warringah. That is democracy. No, CM did not vote for her. The result stands, despite a despicable campaign against the incumbent which included leaving faeces outside his office.

Sadly for Steggall, the broader Australian public repudiated climate change given the terrible performance of the Greens and Labor who pushed this cornerstone uncosted agenda. Climate evangelist Independent Dr Kerryn Phelps lost her seat of Wentworth despite the same endorsement from former UN climate chief Christina Figueres. Julia Banks also fell despite receiving the global warming high priestess’ praises. Climate change wasn’t the key issue for those wealthy latte-sipping constituents across the harbour in Wentworth, just as they weren’t for Warringah.

Steggall had one role – to oust the 25-year incumbent former PM Tony Abbott. She succeeded. It was a mission unlike any other seen in Aussie politics. She had 1,400 people to help her. “Vote 1 Zali Steggall” placards adorned many doors in CM’s neighbourhood. CM always thought sticking an Abbott poster outside one’s house would incite an act of hatred. On election day we got proof of that, including a stabbing. Alex Turnbull even called Abbott a “terrorist”. If there were more terrorists like him we would have fewer bushfires and fewer deaths at sea. Imagine if he accepts the Ambassador to the US role. ScoMo can hardly pick Julie Bishop especially after Bill Shorten endorsed her. CM digresses.

Although Steggall denied the role of activist group GetUp! during the campaign, she has now acknowledged its role. She said,

I think some of [GetUp!’s] aspects have been divisive … but on the other hand, they have raised the profile of climate change…They are here to raise awareness of issues and, for me, that is part of democracy. We are all the better for having­ the variety of issues and debate and opinions at the table.

GetUp! didn’t get much bang for the $13.5mn outside of Abbott. Peter Dutton in the seat of Dickson, Queensland and Christian Porter in the electorate of Pearce, Western ­Australia both increased their margin. GetUp!’s other targets – Greg Hunt, Kevin Andrews and Josh Frydenberg in Victoria as well as Nicolle­ Flint in South Australia, suffered swings against them but all kept their seats. Perhaps they may feel better knowing Clive Palmer won nothing with his $60mn advertising blitz although already Labor sooks are complaining this was indirect spending on the Libs campaign.

In 2022, if Steggall chooses to run, it is unlikely she’ll get anywhere near that level of backing. She is a one term MP. The Liberals will put forward a new candidate who isn’t Abbott. Like Sharma in Wentworth, the Liberals should retake the seat. Steggall won’t have 1,400 volunteers to support her. Nor $13.5mn in GetUp! Backing. If Morrison gets a majority then her vote will be useless in the lower house. She will have served her purpose. If she has any chance of winning she’ll need to trade in the Nissan Pathfinder.

Steggall might do her best to push climate change in parliament for her luxury SUV loving constituents but it will be to no avail. Her biggest global warming sponsors, Labor, will be desperate to find a leader to pull them back from the left. Sadly the first two candidates – Plibersek (who has now stepped away) and Albanese – are of the left and the third suggestion is Jim Chalmers, who was a principle advisor to Rudd. Even Chris Bowen has announced he might run. If they have to bring a new platform, it can’t be the politics of envy and class warfare nor loony uncosted climate change targets nor identity. A new Labor leader will have a lot of trouble reuniting such unmitigated failure in opposition.

The irony is that if Labor scales back the extent of renewable energy targets and emissions then how much of a crisis could it have been at the time of the election? It either is or it isn’t and to try to suggest to Australians that the cost of doing nothing was so high, they didn’t buy it. Who could forget when former PM Kevin Rudd said climate change “was the greatest moral challenge of our generation” in 2007? It wasn’t long after that his ETS was scrapped. Flimflam.

Steggall might say, “I think what was rejected was Labor’s economic policy“. That is true but it was also Labor’s climate change policies which were inextricably linked to people’s pocket books. She might reflect on how many seats that are now blue that weren’t decades ago. They are the aspirational voters, just like that poor chap that lost his job for asking Shorten about tax relief for those on $250,000. Those who don’t want the government in their pocket. Steggall’s electorate is highly affluent. They can weather storms far better than the average Joe.

Maybe Zali Steggall should catch up with Lisa Wilkinson at the Avenue Rd Cafe in Mosman and ask for NZ PM Jacinda Ardern’s direct line because they will both be wondering why PM Scott Morrison isn’t returning either of their calls!

Go woke, go broke

Yet another example of why CM has cancelled his FT subscription. Where is the critical reporting? This article by Pilita Clark doesn’t critique the ridiculous movement by corporates to virtue signal but falls in line with the stupidity.

Maybe the best metaphor for the woke corporation is parsley. It often looks nice as a garnish but 99.9% of us push it to the side of the plate and leave it to be thrown away.

Corporate hypocrisy is everywhere.

Take Josh Bayliss, CEO of Virgin Group. He says,

“It’s definitely true that right now every one of us should think hard about whether or not we need to take a flight.”

Why doesn’t he close down the airlines in the portfolio? Instead of waiting for his customers to grow a conscience and do the right thing why not force their choice? The obvious answer is that it’s hypocritical.

Airlines operate on about 70% capacity load factor break even so if Virgin flights end up being half full he’ll only end up spewing more or less the same CO2 per flight and go out of business. British Airways, EasyJet and Ryanair will welcome Virgin’s virtue signaling. Go woke, go broke.

Qantas has the world’s largest carbon offset program yet only 2% of passengers elect to pay. That’s the extent of the belief in global warming.

Blackrock’s chief Larry Fink said his asset manager needs to do more than just make money yet it only backed 10% of the climate related shareholder proposals. Why? Supposedly because they would crush profits. All talk, little walk.

BP surprisingly helped prevent a carbon tax it openly launched support for. A fossil fuel company trying to undermine a carbon tax? Wow. Who’d a thunk?

UK shadow chancellor John McDonnell has said Labour would seek to delist companies from the London Stock Exchange that didn’t meet their climate change commitments. In order to meet that, will that mean a child daycare company will be burnt at the stake for not brainwashing kindergarten kids? Will there be a minimum pot plant to child ratio?

How would regulations impact the myriad of different businesses that would trigger being dumped from the LSE? What standard would be applied? CM is betting corporates jus need to “file” a governance statement on climate change which no one will read. As long as 100% of companies file, nothing will happen.

Pretty easy to avoid too. Companies could list on Nasdaq or the Singapore exchange to avoid the regulations and still raise capital. Did you think of that Mr McDonnell? No because it is all about being woke and there are plenty of alternatives to dodge stupid policy. Capital is global.

Pilita Clark closes her article by saying,

“Yet the climate debate is shifting and I am willing to bet that companies failing to match their green claims with solid action face far greater risks than they ever have before.”

Like much of the climate religion, few hard facts are ever presented except the date we are all supposed to die. Even then that is an ever-shifting goal post. We can be assured that when 2028 arrives all of a sudden we’ll have another 12 years to do something. A bit like the joke where a patient asks his doctor how long he has to live and is given an extension so he can pay his bill.

The ever-growing tide of the “woke” corporation is going to thwart ingenuity and entrepreneurship. It is corporate suicide to pander to this nonsense. It is not for companies to bang on about their wonderful commitments. Customers and shareholders can decide for themselves. Maybe if companies listened to both groups they would find profits go up. People are growing sick and tired of being told what to do. How to think.

The world is littered with corporate wokeness backfiring. The irony is much of it is self-inflicted. By trying to create false images of virtue, the results have been disastrous.

P&G had to write off billions from its Gillette brand for the toxic masculinity campaign. Before the campaign Gillette was ranked 7th out of 45 health and grooming brands. After, rock bottom.

There is almost a wave of corporate fear twisted by a minority of social activists like Sleeping Giants which create false narratives about public perceptions of evil companies. There is a flip side.

Chick-fil-A was established by Southern Baptists. They don’t ram their Christian beliefs at all in the restaurants. Activists tried to boycott the fast food outlet because one of the directors personally didn’t support same-sex marriage. Guess what, store numbers have doubled and revenues tripled over the last decade.

Chick-fil-A states it’s mission is, “To glorify God by being a faithful steward of all that is entrusted to us. To have a positive influence on all who come in contact with Chick-fil-A.”

Chick-fil-A is notable by its closure on Sundays, Thanksgiving and Christmas. So people are well aware ofthis corporate backing its religious beliefs.

There is a difference between founding a company on certain beliefs and concocting them to ride a wave of hijacking social movements. Customers are aware of the difference.

Virgin Group can wax lyrical about its concerns in trying to save the planet but the only woke thing would be to shut down. Pushing the guilt back on its customers shows how hypocritical the airline is.

To be honest it gets tiring waiting in corporate lobbies watching flat panel TVs advertising all of the wonderful community things they do. 99% of the transaction with any corporate will be driven by the ability to deliver goods and services, not supporting tree planting. It is not to diminish charity or good intentions, rather to cut back on acting as though they’re angels to avoid being put on an imaginary naughty step that doesn’t exist.

Perhaps CM should recommend a portfolio of non-compliant ESG companies. When the market sells off, all the passive money in ESG compliant names should well underperform those that don’t. Perhaps an asset manager should establish an ETF with a basket of companies that just provide product or service rather than garnish it with lashings of corporate virtue. Here is betting it would be a contrarian winner.