Standing up for Canberra

A 1950s world view

Tony Abbott’s decision to knight Prince Philip tells you everything about this Prime Minister.

It tells you his vision for Australia is its past.

It tells you his vision for Australia is based on a 1950s world view.

A 1950s honours system, which was abandoned by Labor nearly 100 years ago.

A 1950s health system, which only the wealthy can access.

A 1950s education system, which is limited to families with deep pockets.

Not even Tony Abbott’s mentor, former Prime Minister John Howard, supported knights and dames. So it’s a dumb idea that just got dumber.

And the real tragedy is that this dumb idea drowned out Australia Day and the achievements of hundreds of Australians, Canberrans, military personnel, public servants and volunteers.

It drowned out the message of Rosie Batty, whose tragedy would have killed many, but whose tragedy empowered her to campaign against domestic violence.

It drowned out the news that four extraordinary women won every category of the Australian Of The Year awards, for the first time ever.

And it drowned out the success of Sir Angus Houston, a great Australian who has contributed so much to our nation, across so many spheres.

It’s no wonder the Prime Minister’s colleagues and conservative commentators are tearing their hair out with his “captain’s call”.

And that Australians of all political persuasions are rightly asking – What decade is Tony Abbott living in?

Or, most importantly, how in touch is he with the Australia of today and tomorrow?