(Above: Malcolm Turnbull, opposition leader, and below him Treasurer Wayne Swan practicing their Chairman Rudd salutes).
Don't you just love Malcolm Turnbull. He's so cheeky. For a minute there I didn't think he was PM material - maybe his wife uses the wrong laundry soap powder - but it was so delicious of him to suggest a tax grab, by proposing to lift the tax on cigarettes - just days after he'd been pounding away at the government for organizing a tax grab, under the sanctimonious cover of copious quantities of blather about the dire effects of alcopops on young women.
Hey, freedom of choice means the total right to ruin your kidneys and liver without having to organise a tea party to protest taxation without representation (go on, name me one teenage girl in parliament, dares ya, and don't fudge it by naming Kevin Rudd).
Now Turnbull's got Health Minister Roxon saying that his tobacco tax hike idea has merit, while Turnbull has promised to look at any revised alcopops tax that might come his way. Well that's just fine and dandy. Perhaps taxing vices of all kinds is the way to sort out rugby league, and balance the budget all in one go.
Can't wait to read Tim Blair's outrage at more abuse of fags and fag lovers (that's Australian for cigarette btw and no reflection on Blair's views on gay marriage).
WTF was all that screaming and shouting about the pinko perverts abusing young women by over pricing their plonk?
As for Turnbull's second plank, it was a doozy. When asked about how he was going to bring down the budget deficit, Turnbull flung in a play from Kevin Rudd's play book. He was going to devise, call, contemplate and consider the findings of an inquiry into government expenditure, and so add to all the bureaucratic paper shuffling so beloved by Rudd, and so hated and demonized and howled down by the commentariat. The results of the inquiry are anticipated around 2020.
Ah arsegropper, you learn wisely and well. As boring Rudd became boring Howard, so you can become tedious Rudd. The gateless gate is open, walk on through, and when Chairman Rudd goes off to run the United Nations and ruin the world, everything will stay the same in a healthy, happily taxed Australia. Just as the commentariat demands ...
Meanwhile Mr. Turnbull, please don't break the heart of Australians everywhere with your arty crafty eastern suburbs memories of when you were a republican. Please fight for our right to have Prince Charlie as our king ... we need all the Charlies we can get.