As billionaire Clive Palmer playfully swats Tony Abbott around for a bit of sport the Liberal leadership should hark back to the first battle over the mining tax. Their recollections will not improve their mood.

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Back when mining companies were fiercely opposing then-Prime Minister Kevin Rudd’s doomed attempt to tax super profits they did so with a carefully regimented strategy. That regimentation was busted when Mr Palmer kept making unilateral interventions into the debate which strayed from the strategy and gave the appearance of disunity.

There were calls to Mr Palmer from executives of the big miners suggesting that a parade of billionaires refusing to pay a proposed tax was not a good look. It didn’t work. Clive Palmer would not be silenced until he thought he had made his presence felt.

And the same is happening now in the Liberal Party - or the Liberal National Party (LNP) as it’s known in Mr Palmer’s home state of Queensland.

It’s not a good look for Tony Abbott and other top Liberals to have a billionaire fundraiser romping so overtly in party debates as if he owned the joint.

The big money providers for the Liberals are meant to be milked but not heard. Clive Palmer believes that if you are going to pay, you are going to have a say. And you are going to do it in the open.

He has publicly made the quite reasonable point that it might be a conflict of interest to have two lobbyists - Alexander Downer and Santo Santoro - as senior Liberal officials, and privately had a noisy row with Opposition Leader Tony Abbott on the issue.

At the Liberals’ federal council last weekend Mr Palmer was wherever the cameras were and was clearly enjoying himself.

But what has further upset Liberals and delighted the ALP is the spectacle of Mr Palmer proposing - more like threatening - to run for Federal Parliament in a Queensland seat.

Who wouldn’t? The way Labor is going in Queensland even those CIA agents Mr Palmer claims are plotting against him could pick up a bundle of votes.

He was going to take on Treasurer Wayne Swan in the Brisbane seat of Lilley but then ducked out with a suggestion he might take on independent Bob Katter in the north Queensland seat of Kennedy.

It is likely he is just teasing Labor with the possibility he might force the party to spend money it doesn’t have to defend a cabinet member. And he is taunting his own party, by pretending to menace its decorum and solidarity.

Tony Abbott replied by taking a big swipe at Mr Palmer, effectively saying he would have to give up his day job of mining billionaire if he entered Parliament. Let’s face it, Mr Abbott doesn’t want a wealthy bloke who thinks he knows better than him and should be PM sitting alongside in Parliament. He’s got Malcolm Turnbull already.

Also, Clive Palmer matches the Queensland style of politics which is boisterous and unabashed, a long way from the buttoned-down discipline of Tony Abbott.

But while Mr Palmer might be teasing, he does indeed believe he knows what’s good for the state and probably for the country.

He declared his grass roots political credits by laying out his campaigning record since becoming a young fan of Premier Joh Bjelke-Petersen and the Nationals’ brilliant president Sir Robert Sparkes in the late 60s.

Mr Palmer said he had knocked on four million doors for the Nationals since 1969. This immediately launched a fleet of calculators and an armada of doubts.

By one calculation, Mr Palmer’s record meant he had alerted the residents behind 93,023 doors a year for the past 43 years. Or 254 doors a day. Or 11 doors an hour.

So with a door knocking rate of more than six a minute, it is extraordinary that Mr Palmer still had time to be a highly successful businessman, let alone get some sleep. No wonder he has flown to Tahiti to get some rest.

But it’s all part of the over-the-top nature of the man who wants to be seen as a big mover in the expected Coalition federal government, much as the senior figures in that prospective government might not be looking forward to it.

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    • AdamC says:

      12:04pm | 05/07/12

      What a storm in a teacup. Clive Palmer is entltled to his views. Obviously, he has a louder voice than the average person in the street, but I cannot see why that is a problem for the LNP. This article hardly makes the case, either.

      As usual, another Mal Farr article wins the Internet Award for best impersonation of an ALP press release.

    • ZSM says:

      12:43pm | 05/07/12

      Agreed Adam. What a non-story. Of all the topics Farr could have chosen to write about today, he chooses this nonsense?

      Nothing but a character assassination of Palmer. Where’s his Paul Howes story? He wields as much, if not more power over the ALP than Palmer ever would over the LNP.

      I also found it hilarious that Swanny is now full of bravado since Palmer decided not to run in Lilley. Clive would have kicked his arse into next week if he had.

      I honestly can’t get my around all the Lefties crying “News Ltd bias” when the Chief Political Editor of the organisation writes articles like this on an almost daily basis.

    • Borderer says:

      01:09pm | 05/07/12

      I’ve got stuff between my toes that could beat Swan in Lilley.
      Clive should have just said that he only wanted to run against Swan as the only people left in Queensland who would vote for him are either illiterate, insane or members of his immediate family.

    • AdamC says:

      03:04pm | 05/07/12

      ZSM, Paul Howes has vastly more influence on Labor than Clive Palmer has on the LNP. There are cabinet ministers who have less say on Labor policy than Paul Howes!

      Borderer, let’s hope so. At least the local Woolies will be spared his carbon tax grandstanding.

    • bill says:

      03:13pm | 05/07/12

      Non event. The only game in town is punishing the Gillard lie on the carbon tax. Until the public get to the ballot box and punish that lie they will focus on nothing else. The public need to get that out of their system before they can move on and look at anything else.

    • John says:

      07:08pm | 05/07/12

      It’s easy to tell when the Liberal luvvies are really worried. They lamely try to dismiss their nightmares as non events. They’re stuck with Palmer, and rightly so.

    • Gregg says:

      08:14am | 06/07/12

      Tony Abbot has already stated that Clive has no more sway than any other member of the LNP when it comes to the party.
      Sure, he may have influence over some people just as some senior members would but he still just has one vote,

      As for describing the picture, yep ” Clive is a bit on the bloated side, head and all ” and probably needs to go and do some digging in soil himself as well as general exercising not just to get a decent level of fitness but to survive until next election day.

    • Dieter Moeckel says:

      09:53am | 06/07/12

      AdamC.
      Of course he’s entitled to his opinion and views but then so is everybody else rich or poor but our poor sense of equality gives his views credibility, weight and publicity out of all proportion.
      Wealth does not equate to intelligence the man is an ignoramus twat with money to influence the public debate - his power subsists in wealth not in intelligence or hard work. Even Tony Abbott retains his position due to hard work and persistence not wealth.
      Australia used to be a meritocracy - now we seem to have a wealth nobility. Back to the future and self inflicted serfdom.

    • Shane blackwood says:

      01:18pm | 06/07/12

      I vote Liberal and am a true believer in the party having grown up in Labor wastelands in the 1980s and seen what Labor does to society. This is not sour grapes regards Palmer because it is a big issue for us. I explain thus:
      Why are evil clowns like Paul Howes and Simon Sheikh seen as potential star candidates for ALP safe seats where they can just drivel out pure mush and make everybody on the left feel nice. However somebody who is their polar opposite in every conceivable way like Palmer could never enter poiltics for any party?

    • blimpies says:

      12:17pm | 05/07/12

      hahahaha
      Palmer the blimp.
      Maybe Rinehart can be another blimp and the two of them will fly off into the sunset. Wonder if that would be in the best interests of the right wing nutters currently in opposition.

      Tahiti you say?
      I seem to remember that was the place the Marlon Brando bulked up like a blimp as well.

    • Richard says:

      12:20pm | 05/07/12

      Haha, yeah, Big Clive is flirting with total lunacy at times. I love the bloke, but jeez, he’s a bit off his rocker I reckon.

    • james says:

      02:14pm | 05/07/12

      Agree mate, too much of a loose canon, thats why he is going after Katter who is sitting on an 18% margin. Being thrown to the wolves for his outspoken views.

    • Craig of North Brisbane says:

      04:01pm | 05/07/12

      I really enjoyed his interview on Lateline last night.  The poorly veiled sarcasm (“I want to say a big cheerio to Tony if he’s watching!”) and dumping all over party unity probably had the Liberal party heavyweights seething.

      He’s still probably be a better PM than Tony Abbott.

    • Alfie says:

      12:25pm | 05/07/12

      I am less concerned about Clive than the Green nutters.

    • Borderer says:

      01:13pm | 05/07/12

      Alfie,
      Their efforts in big boy pants have exposed them for what they are, expect to see them reduced greatly come the election.

    • Knemon says:

      02:13pm | 05/07/12

      I’m a Green nutter that loves Clive. Tell me Alfie, what’s the opposite of a Green nutter?

      Borderer - If only we could somehow have a wager over the internet, the Green vote (%) will rise at the next election, they may lose one seat in the lower house but they will still hold the balance of power in the Senate, and how sweet it will be, especially if Abbott is PM. Bring it on, sooner rather than later.

    • Borderer says:

      03:18pm | 05/07/12

      Knemon,
      The Greens were all excited when the Qld state election came around, all the pundits had them tipped to edge out the ALP in the seat of Mt Cootha by picking the disenchanted labor voters. They instead dropped 3% and nearly 1% statewide where the greens as a party were not a big deal so far as political grievances go.
      Voters aren’t turning to the Greens, federally they know that the carbon tax was their brideprice, they know that they are not a political alternative. The best they can hope for is to lose the lower house seat and maybe one or two senate seats.
      The Greens are handy if you want someone watching out for the environment, you can listen to their opinions and take from it what you will.
      Having them govern (or involved in governing).... you may as well give a teenager a platinum amex. They’ve demonstrated this inability since the last election, spending money that we can’t afford on schemes with questionable outcomes and most of all coming up with a world leading tax when we aren’t leading the world. They have no grounding and while it may be cool to be alternative, voting for them is just not palatable for mainstream Australian’s who have no desire to be a cave dwelling vegan share farmer.

    • Knemon says:

      04:19pm | 05/07/12

      LOL Borderer

      Comparing what happened in Queensland state politics with what will happen federally is laughable, the least Green state in Australia is QLD, I think we both know the reason for that!

    • Alfie says:

      07:02pm | 05/07/12

      @Knemon

      The Grees will follow the Democrat’s into oblivion.

    • Borderer says:

      08:56am | 06/07/12

      Knemon,
      I agree that QLD is one of the least green states but they expected a swing in their favour where the exact opposite occured. Like I said they had no political grievances on a state level but the swing still went against them, on a federal level, a lot of people have a big axe to grind.

    • Marilyn says:

      04:24pm | 06/07/12

      Why are the Greens so nutty?  They oppose more people being killed in Afghanistan and want the soldiers brought home - as do the vast majority of us after nearly 11 years of achieving nothing.

      They want to stop polluting and destroying the air, the soil, the rivers and waters and make this country liveable into the future - how deranged is that?

      They want us to live up to the human rights standards for all that we claim we want to uphold and they want our parliament not to break the law.

      Wow, no wonder so many people vote Greens or independents now instead of labor or liberal.

      And Clive is dead right about refugees.  We guaranteed to help them but all we do is waste billions pushing them away and pretending it is legal.

      If asylum seekers were allowed to apply for visas to fly here and then make their claims we would save billions and everyone would be happy.

      The Greens want to label our food properly to show Australian content, they believe in equality in marriage, they want to save farmland from coal seam gas mining so we don’t end up like the US with undrinkable water and poisoned aquifers.

      Wow, how crazy are they then?

      Strange then that Bob Katter and the llikes of Bill Heffernan agree with the Greens on the CSG and saving the farming industry.

      What else do they do that is crazy - oh yeah, they don’t want nuclear power and uranium mining, they wan’t to preserve the Great Barrier Reef and other parks and don’t want Japan and others to slaughter whales.

      What a truly deranged lot hey?

    • Zaf says:

      12:33pm | 05/07/12

      Who pays, says, though I don’t see why buying Govt and opinion has to bew so very blatant. (Gina, I’m looking at you too.)

      Abbott should just offer to make Clive Cultural Attache in London….

    • PhoenixGirl says:

      12:38pm | 05/07/12

      Another episode of Abbott Abbott Abbott brought to you by Mal Farr for the ALP.

      Tomorrow don’t miss our bumper episode of Abbott Abbott Abbott.. Abbott. Oh yes there will be one more Abbott where we show you how there is enough evidence to link Hurricanes, Tornados and Tsunamis directly to Tony Abbott.

      Oh and in case you forgot, here is a recap on todays story: Abbott, Abbott, Abbott.

    • Just ashes no rising says:

      02:09pm | 05/07/12

      Why not talk about Abbott?
      You like the boats that keep coming since Abbott refused to support off shore processing? Wonder how many there have been since October last year when he took that stand? Wonder how many people have died and will continue to die as he refuses to support off shore processing.
      You like the absence of details in his carbon tax policy?

      You obviously like the fact that he takes every opportunity for a soundbite but gets little scrutiny in the press.

      Abbot abbott abbot, is your chant, as empty of content as your vacuous leaders head.

    • Alex says:

      02:15pm | 05/07/12

      You realise the main reason he continues to write negative articles about Abbott is because on The Punch everyone gets up in arms about it and dear ol Mal gets stacks of comments.
      That’s what it’s all about. If you don’t want Mal to keep trotting out the garbage he does about Abbott, less comments will help that.
      Best thing don’t comment at all on anti Abbott stories by Mal.

    • Karen from Qld says:

      02:25pm | 05/07/12

      I don’t happen to like the boats that have started to come in ever increasing numbers since Labor abolished Howard’s policy.
      I don’t happen to like being taxed on the air that I breathe. I don’t happen to like being slugged for a solution that is no solution just so Gillard could be PM and play with the big kids.
      I don’t happen to like the way Canberra Press Gallery won’t hold Gillard accountable for her numerous stuff ups.
      I don’t happen to like the way someone who is not governing this country is held up to blame for all of Labor’s mistakes.
      Abbot Abbott Abbott, is the chant of the vacuous Left

    • One of the seventy percent says:

      02:27pm | 05/07/12

      Tony Abbott is not the one who dismantled a working policy on the boats.  That was Kevin Rudd aided by Julia Gillard.  They broke it, they should fix it.  I don’t blame him for not supporting the Malaysia solution because neither did the High Court.  The only answer you and they have is to blame Tony Abbott.  What a crock.  As far as the carbon tax is concerned, why would he have details on something he plans to get rid of.  You thirty percenters are starting to sound even more ridiculous by the moment.

    • Borderer says:

      02:32pm | 05/07/12

      Just ashes no rising
      Who are the Greens? Aren’t they supporting the government? Aren’t they you bought and paid for allies?
      Get your own house in order and then criticise the opposition for <shock, horror> opposing….

    • M2 says:

      02:44pm | 05/07/12

      @Just ashes

      “the boats that keep coming since Abbott refused to support ..”
      I think you meant to say “.. since Rudd and Gillard replaced the policy that worked with one that lures people to their deaths”

    • RMB says:

      02:46pm | 05/07/12

      @Just ashes no rising. Keep perpetuating that lie. Nobody is buying it but it doesn’t deter you ALP fanbois from trying it. This boat fiasco lays squarely on the shoulders of Gillard and more importantly Rudd before her, and you know it.

    • mikem says:

      04:17pm | 05/07/12

      Did it ever occur to you PhoenixGirl that the interest in Tony Abbott might be because people want to know what he is really about and what we will get if he becomes PM.  At the moment all we are seeing is a facade tightly controlled by his Chief of Staff Peta Credlin and his other minders.  The Australian public need to know who the real Tony Abbott is and and more importantly who is actually making the decisions now and who will be making the decisions in the future.  I and many others don’t want a PM who is simply a puppet controlled by others.  That is not what Australia needs and nor is it democratic.

    • mikem says:

      04:55pm | 05/07/12

      And before all of the usual suspects jump to his defence ask yourselves:
      - If he is so capable why is it that he needs to be so tightly controlled?
      - Why is he not permitted to answer questions?

      People should be concerned that all he does is repeat the same phrases polly parrot fashion and when asked questions about other topics either ignores the questioner or changes the subject.  That is not behaviour you would reasonably expect from a leader.

    • BSM says:

      05:01pm | 05/07/12

      @mikem. Spare us the ALP spin du jour. What a load of utter hogwash. Which “real Julia” are we seeing this week?

    • mikem says:

      06:28pm | 05/07/12

      For your information BSM I am a swinging voter.  One of those select few who actually think about what is being offered and make their decision accordingly and thereby determine who forms government. 

      I don’t like what politics has become and long for the era when leaders were their own person.  Fraser, Gorton and even Whitlam were much better leaders than we have now.  Whilst I don’t agree with much of what Clive Palmer says I respect him for his honesty and straight forwardness.  ie lack of spin.

      What I don’t like about Abbott is that he is an orchestrated character being used to sell a particular message and I don’t particularly like that message or the way it is being sold.  If Peta Credlin wants to be PM then she should stand for Parliament and put her name in the ring for the leadership.

    • mikem says:

      08:54pm | 05/07/12

      An example of the problem with Abbott is the recent refugee debate.  In 24 hours he went from looking as if he genuinely cared about the problem to being a hard nosed bastard over it.  That begs the question of whether he really does have a Jekyl and Hyde personality or whether he was ‘persuaded’ to stick to the existing politically advantageous hardline policy.  Either way he is damned by it.

    • Blind Freddy says:

      12:45pm | 05/07/12

      Now that Palmer is becoming a problem for the LNP - expect some good old right-wing class warfare.

    • Marco says:

      01:09pm | 05/07/12

      Class warfare like Labor plays?

      In any case don’t fret about things that might never happen.  I think Labor has it’s own problems in the here and now - Gillard (proven liar and backstabber), Swan (deceitful hater), Albanese (misguided tool), Krudd (coniving & vengeful), Garrett (dumb as dog shit), Bowen (hopeless), Shorten (turns with the wind), Combet (hapless thug #1), Howes (hapless thug #2, though not as smart as Combet), and the list goes on and on and on.

    • Blind Freddy says:

      02:40pm | 05/07/12

      @Marco

      “Class warfare like Labor plays?”

      Yes, something like that.

    • John says:

      12:54pm | 05/07/12

      “It’s not a good look for Tony Abbott and other top Liberals to have a billionaire fundraiser romping so overtly in party debates as if he owned the joint.”

      What do you mean, as if, Malcolm ?

    • Ginger Mick says:

      01:57pm | 05/07/12

      It’s not a good look to have Labor run by the Unions.

      It’s not a good look to lie to the people before an election

      It’s not a good look to fail in nearly everything they rant about doing or have done (or not done)

      It’s not a good look for Ministers to have public rants and childish pranks

      It’s not a good look to be seen to be doing nothing about our homeless and mentally challenged

      It’s not a good look to be changing your policies on the run at the beck and call of Greens or Independents

      It’s not a ........... 

      damn it’s sickening what is being done to us by our PM and Labor, I just hope fixing it is not going to be too painful and Labor actually gets the blame for what they inflicted on us and not those who try to fix our woes.

      $300 billion what’s the interest bill on that ?  Maybe 15 to 20 $billion per annum (probably more)?  You could do a hell of a lot of good with that amount!

    • Nikraf says:

      02:44pm | 05/07/12

      @ginger mick “It’s not a good look to have Labor run by the Unions.” where is your proof ?

      “It’s not a good look to lie to the people before an election” you forget all side of politics have lied before a election

      “It’s not a good look to fail in nearly everything they rant about doing or have done (or not done)” so most every thing is the mining carbon and boat people good one

      “It’s not a good look for Ministers to have public rants and childish pranks” no its better to let them go of in the Senate and shop lift

      “It’s not a good look to be seen to be doing nothing about our homeless and mentally challenged” when the money gets diverted by the lnp state governments

      “It’s not a good look to be changing your policies on the run at the beck and call of Greens or Independents” thats why tony abbott and the lnp did not form government he cant compromise

      dame its sickening how sycophant lnp supporters nit pick about everything they don’t like

      $300 billion and 15 to 20 $billion per annum where did you get that number from hope it was not the from the Liberals because everyone knows they cant count when they are in opposition

      oh i did not vote labor or green or Lnp in the last election because there policy’s all look the same

    • Ginger Mick says:

      03:51pm | 05/07/12

      @ Nikraf

      Just the comments I would expect from someone just arrived on the planet

      or have you been playing Rip Van Winkle?

      As to voting, are you old enough to vote ?  Does not sound like it.

      I have been voting since 1968 and proud of my contributions.

    • Nikraf says:

      05:04pm | 05/07/12

      @ginger mick you may have been voting since 1968 and you still don’t know politicians lie what you been smoking since 1968!

    • Stone age liberal says:

      04:10pm | 06/07/12

      Ginger Mick, you did not have to tell us your age, your comments make it clear enough. Wont be too long now before all your generation is to infirm to make it to the ballots and we will see some real progressive change.  The social paradigm you guys were raised in is so far off centre. Voting in 68 means your formative years were the late 50’s and early 60’s. Yep that is the social mentality we need. Homosexuality illegal, then the provacation laws, Mcarthyism at it worst, massive pollution and global armament, I mean FFS they called it the MAD strategy. I am far more concerned about your generations voting preferences than I am the younger generation

    • Mattb says:

      01:03pm | 05/07/12

      Go Clive,

      You might have a few crazy ideas, but who hasnt eh. I rate your veiws on political lobbyists and asylum seekers and love watching Abbott squirm like the little worm he is everytime you speak up. Get yourself a seat in parliament and you wont have to play with those strings you’ve got attached to Tony, you can cut em and discard the attached ‘useless carcass’ in the corner!..

    • Mattb says:

      01:04pm | 05/07/12

      Go Clive,

      You might have a few crazy ideas, but who hasnt eh. I rate your veiws on political lobbyists and asylum seekers and love watching Abbott squirm like the little worm he is everytime you speak up. Get yourself a seat in parliament and you wont have to play with those strings you’ve got attached to Tony, you can cut em and discard the attached ‘useless carcass’ in the corner!..

    • PEOPLE POWER says:

      01:08pm | 05/07/12

      If Palmer is a genuine person and believe in a fair go and respect, he should check the swiss direct democracy and support direct democracy because it promotes popular engagement with the political process on questions of public importance, particularly in matters that affect people immediately and specifically.

      Most representative systems deteriorate towards an oligarchy as it is here under the absolute power of the political parties in which the people are irrelevant .

      Representatives hold the power to select other representatives, presidents (the Governor-General), or other officers of government “THE CRONIES” ......
      It is true dictatorship by stealth and democracy is dead.

      Today’s Daily Telegrraph letters to editor section have some exellent letters
      “NO DEFENCE FOR POLITICIANS GREED” .....the Renumeration Tribunal (cronies) was set up by politicians for politicians to serve their
      self-interest.

      Direct democracy has been shown to improve people’s engagement with the political process ans “SHIT rarely HAPPENS” as it is happening every day.

      In a speech in the House of Commons on 11 November 1947, Winston Churchill said:
      Democracy is the worst form of government except for all those others that have been tried.

      After what we have witnessed if DIRECT DEMOCRACY is not the best answer to keep the bastards honest and redtore faith in our corrupted system than nothing will change and more shits will happen.

      Political parties are in essence a dictatorship who are cut off from real world, manipulate the truth, enrich themselves at the tax payers expense. The political parties no longer represent the interests of the public but serve as vehicles for personal ambitions.

      If Mr Palmer might be teasing, he does indeed believe he knows what’s good for the state and probably for the country and it is DIRECT DEMOCRACY a la Switzerland in which the people are sovereign not a mob of mafiosis as it is in a mafiacracy.

    • Ginger Mick says:

      01:23pm | 05/07/12

      Aristotle Onassis, another billionaire of years past, was once asked what would he do if he was broke.

      He said that he would work to get a good suit of clothes and then rub shoulders with the successful businessmen so that he could pick up the crumbs of ideas and directions.  He would then know what to do.

      He did not say he would go hang out with political nut cases.

      Now - wisdom is one thing, doing something is another.

      The Palmers and Rineharts of Australia are doers, the Labor lot are gunnas, gunna do this gunna do that, gunna fix the unfixable, gunna lead the World (ha ha ha )

      Search for facts, not opinions - YOU have opinions based on truth, facts, and unbiased knowledgeable counsel.  Trick is to be able to find them.

    • the moor says:

      01:27pm | 05/07/12

      At least with Palmer you know what he stands for and what you will get, and the point he makes that lobbyists should not hold executive positions in political parties is valid.  Politicians are not independent of their political parties and in most cases they just toe the line of what the party machines want (and that applies to all of the major political parties).  If we accept that it is right and proper for politicians to be at arm lengths from their business interests then that same standard should also apply to those who are in a position to directly influence them.  Nothing less is acceptable and the legislation should be changed to reflect this.

      The fact that Tony Abbott so vehemently resisted Palmer’s motion to self regulate the conflict of interest out of the Liberal Party is a little disturbing.  If Mr Abbott believes in democracy and political parties reflecting the will of the people why would he do that?  Several possibilities:
      a) The vested interests are already so entrenched that it would be difficult to remove them.
      b) Liberal Party funding would dry up if those vested interests could no longer have the direct influence they do.
      c) Those vested interests represent Tony Abbott’s power base.

      The answer is probably all three and a lot more. 

      From where I sit it already looks like the Liberal Party’s controlling clique are determining the policies in favour of their backers. The major beneficiaries of the policies being put forward byTony Abbott and his cohorts will clearly be mining and big business.  Whether that is actually good for most Australians and small businesses doesn’t even enter the equation.

    • Chris L says:

      01:28pm | 05/07/12

      He’s in Tahiti?! Oh please let his private jet pilot be named Simon!

    • M says:

      01:31pm | 05/07/12

      If clive manages to annoy both Labor AND Abbott, then god bless ‘im.

    • DOB says:

      01:45pm | 05/07/12

      A doorknocking rate of 11 an hour is just over 1 door every 6 minutes, not 6 doors every minute.

      Just sayin’....

    • LostinPerth says:

      05:17pm | 05/07/12

      Shhh

      Never let facts ruin a good story

    • Robert S McCormick says:

      01:54pm | 05/07/12

      I love Clive!
      He is an intelligent version of Joh!
      At least he would put a bit of Life into those stuffed shirts & blouses being paid almost $200,000 plus perks for sitting around doing nothing. The Parliament would become really fun to watch & listen to. They might with Clive to jolly them along & stick a few crackers up their self-satisfied rectums actually DO SOME WORK, solve a few problems.
      Come on, Clive, Come on! With Gillard out of the way & Abbott replaced by Malcolm Australia & the world would be a much better place.

    • mikem says:

      02:33pm | 05/07/12

      Clive would be a maverick who wouldn’t be afraid to voice his opinion and the Liberal Party wouldn’t like that at all.  Having a person not toeing the ‘party line’ would reflect badly on the authority of their leader and create an impression of disunity.  Those facts alone explains why Tony Abbott doesn’t want Palmer in Parliament.

      Disunity is the one thing the Liberals won’t countenance.  This was demonstrated rather poignantly after Mal Washer ‘broke ranks’ on the refugee problem and spoke up for reaching a compromise position that would save lives.  He was roundly condemned by the ‘Liberal Party stooges’ on Perth talk back radio for being disloyal.  It will be interesting to see whether that ‘disloyalty’ translates into a push to have him retire at the next election.

    • RMB says:

      04:07pm | 05/07/12

      @mikem. Yes, and the ALP is such a shining example of a party that promotes individual thought and allowing their MP’s to vote with their conscience, even if it breaks ranks eh? Don’t make me laugh.

    • mikem says:

      05:46pm | 06/07/12

      RMB the problem with political parties is that elected politicians are like the animals in Animal Farm where some are more equal than others.  Some get to decide what the rest will do irrespective of whether that is what the majority wants.  A good example of that in practice was Tony Abbott’s recent unilateral decision that Liberal members will not have a conscience vote on the private members Gay Marriage bill.  Ditto on the private members bill on Refugees.

    • Karen from Qld says:

      02:16pm | 05/07/12

      Gee don’t you love it. All those that knocked or mocked Palmer are now singing his praises. All you have to do is let the Abbott Abbott Abbott monster loose and see how Labor luvvies can suddenly jump to the right and hold their knees in tight. Let’s do the time warp again.
      Sorry about the lyrics. I think I am channelling Emerson…

    • Peter says:

      04:18pm | 05/07/12

      Palmer for PM, lets hope he can do a Newman!!

    • Zaf says:

      05:27pm | 05/07/12

      [I think I am channelling Emerson]

      Actually, Karen from Qld,  you sound more like Mary Jo Fisher.   

      My advice: go with it!  Play to your strengths : - )

    • Karen from Qld says:

      08:29pm | 05/07/12

      @Peter -  Palmer will never give up his day job. So dream on. Only wish that Gillard would give up now.

    • Karen from Qld says:

      09:13pm | 05/07/12

      Zaf At least I don’t look like a stranded fish flapping about

    • Luke says:

      02:20pm | 05/07/12

      Clive seems to have calmed down considerably in interviews and press conferences he’s done lately.
      Sounding almost reasonable?and sensible? Maybe?

    • DJ says:

      02:43pm | 05/07/12

      So, tell me this then… Why wouldn’t Mr Palmer be entitled to think that as a part of “big business” he’d be entitled to tell the liberals what to do and how to do it?  Isn’t that how this country works, according to blogs and commenters? The unions run the ALP and big business is the hand in the liberal puppet show… At least that’s what all the “informed opinion” seems to tell me.

    • Badjack says:

      03:32pm | 05/07/12

      Good god Malcolm Farr, for the first time I agree with you. But there is one thing you guys in the media have forgotten. “You have to feed the chooks” and Clive is showing he learnt well from J B-P. Big Clive is taking the piss out of the media.

    • James O says:

      06:10pm | 05/07/12

      I hope no one discourages Clive Palmer as he is great value whenever he makes a public appearance,not even the hardline lefties on the ABC can keep a straight face because Clive is not detered by the loaded questions as he gives rebuttal with a smoothly rehearsed retort that reveals that he is obviously manipulating the medias time to suit himself. Tony Abbott could learn a thing or two from Clive about the art of fearless publicity seeking because Clive is showing the way on how to create a budget American style political campaign which is no doubt inspired by his Presidential hero John F. Kennedy.  I suspect that Clive would like Australia to function more like the USA putting wealthy people on a higher mantle than the quiet achiever status they enjoy now, demonstrating without blushing that it is not a mortal sin to have power and money. Tony Abbott’s leadership style must seem to lack appropriate vision and drive and for this reason Clive feels compelled to inject his personality into the debate about Australia’s future, stirring the pot a little, because i suspect he would quickly become bored if he ever entered Parliament and it’s stodgy confines. Whatever the motivation behind Clive Palmers use of the media his charisma will guarantee he will never be short of invites, poor Barnaby Joice will soon be feeling lonely and left out.

    • Daniel says:

      07:43pm | 05/07/12

      I really am at a loss to see what progressive visions that guy has for Australia and future generations?

    • stephen says:

      08:23pm | 05/07/12

      Julia is already tormenting us and we do not need another.

      Bring on the forgenator, the rampant thinker and doer who we do not have to make excuses for when he/she goes eye to eye with Mister Bang Bang.

    • Terence says:

      08:46am | 06/07/12

      Actually for once Malcolm seems to have written a truthful article!

      Clive is poking fun at the electoral institution, and at the same time giving it a well earned dose of chain pulling!  For a change keeping them on their toes instead of the other way around.  Just what we need in these taxing times of half truths.

    • Dieter Moeckel says:

      09:46am | 06/07/12

      Palmer is a rich ignoramus twat ... end of. Probably so rich he doesn’t read or follow any rigorous discipline so he’s bored. He’d be a distraction in parliament with is incoherent waffle.
      Needling the parties probably give him the kicks he can’t get any other way. It would be better for the country to give him access to an unused shipyard so that he can build his Titanic replica and keep off the streets.

 

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