Leaks from Tony’s Journal
Settling the Bill – Another Leak from Tony’s Journal
My visit to Gallipoli was truly inspirational. It’s amazing how that event has had such an influence on forging our national character. The experience has given me renewed confidence to take on impossible odds like getting the next budget through the Senate.
I had an intriguing discussion with Turkish Prime Minister Davutoglu during my trip about the growth his country is experiencing in Australian tourism. We agreed Aussie tourists should be banned from travelling on to the Islamic State from Turkey and reciprocal tourism arrangements should be actively discouraged.
I found it fascinating that both the Prime Minister of Turkey and also President Erdogan had such a profound understanding of Australian politics that neither of them had ever heard of Bill Shorten.
I had a most constructive and collegial discussion with President Hollande at the Elysee Palace which was a bit of a surprise really because he’s such a serious socialist. We had a frank exchange about issues of mutual concern which gave me the opportunity to counsel him about the complexities of having too many women in his cabinet especially girlfriends and left-wingers.
We also discussed tourism to the Islamic state and agreed it should be actively discouraged especially for long-term stays. I didn’t come as any sort of surprise that he hadn’t heard of Bill Shorten.
I returned from overseas to find Joe in a terrible lather over the budget. I was able to calm him down and reassure him that if we buckled and brought down a budget specially tailored to gain the approval of Jacqui, Christine Milne, Nick Xenophon, Ricky Muir and that anonymous guy who leads the Labor Party the country would run out of money by Christmas.
Colin Barnett has been on the phone constantly about his share of the GST. I know the whole GST thing’s a horse’s arse but what can you do when you’ve got states like W.A. and Tassie who believe it’s possible to grow their economy without a business sector?
I thought the state premiers would resolve the GST problem themselves by approaching it in a selfless and statesmanlike manner. I might just as well have expected them to recommend a knighthood for me for services to COAG and readily recall the identity of the leader of the Labor Party.
I thought Margie looked very fetching in that hat at Gallipoli. It was the nearest thing to a Turkish fez I could find.
By the way while we were in Gallipoli Prince Harry asked me if I knew who Bill Shorten was. ‘No’ I replied ‘never heard of him’