He may be in his mid-seventies, but Alan Jones AO has lost none of the “fire in his belly” for the causes he espouses, nor has he softened his aggression against opponents.
On Monday 30 October 2017, the maestro of the classroom, Rugby field, radio, TV and even the stage, made a surprising panel appearance on the rival ABC TV program Q&A, hosted by Tony Jones.
He was one of four panelists, the others being former Prime Minister Kevin Rudd, AFR (Australian Financial Review) Political Editor Laura Tingle, and La Trobe University Emeritus Professor Judith Brett.
He was easily the best speaker, out-shining Kevin Rudd’s erudite but more wordy, political-speak.
Ever mindful of his rural roots, Alan Jones has been instrumental in achieving a moratorium on farm threatening coal-seam gas mining in NSW and Southern Queensland. If he has his way he could also be instrumental in halting the development of the ambitious proposed Adani coal-mine in Northern Queensland. Adani, the Indian Mining giant, has been bedeviled by stories of corruption, money laundering, and blatant environmental vandalism, but both Australian State and Federal governments have been bending over in eagerness to win its favour. I hope better judgement will prevail, and the project abandoned.
However the occasion also provided him with an unique, not to be missed national forum, to again attack the Prime Minister, Malcolm Turnbull. He was at his eloquent best but in my opinion quite biased and unfair. In past years he himself had failed at several attempts to enter parliament. Now as a media guru he enjoys the luxury as an arm-chair critic of always being right and can sagely provide simplistic solutions for complex national problems. For him the decision to call off the proposed indigenous referendum just highlights Turnbull’s incompetence as a leader. How hard would it have been? But he does not reveal what he might have said had the referendum been persisted with!
As far as I have been able to ascertain, Jones’s vendetta against Turnbull dates from June 2014, when Turnbull under attack over the second Hockey budget was injudicious enough to suggest that Alan Jones and Andrew Bolt were “bomb throwers” for the Labor Party.
Alan Jones alleges that Turnbull is destroying the Liberal Party, and that the Coalition cannot win the next election with him as Leader. But then back in 2014 he pontificated that Turnbull would never become Prime Minister. What is it about Malcolm Turnbull that so irks Alan Jones?