Flat White

Malcolm Turnbull: The Ghost Who Talks

10 December 2019

1:01 PM

10 December 2019

1:01 PM

I believe in ghosts.   

Most Sri Lankan-born men, women or children generally believe in the misty world of ghosts, spirits and demons that float; usually unseen but not unheard, around our human habitations.  

However, they seldom appear on television talk shows, as in last evening’s Q&A, mercifully the last to be hosted by Tony Jones, and billed as ‘the end of an era.’  


Former PM Malcolm Turnbull, aka The Ghost Who Talks, was top of the playbill, ahead of Labor leader Anthony Albanese. Turnbull, IMHO, embodies all the attributes of the angry ghost, bitterness at an unexpected end, overwhelming feelings of anger at being unjustly displaced and unshakeable belief in his own ability, had he not been rolled, to win the last election — although even his most sympathetic supporters in the media now simply shake their heads and stay silent.  

Angry ghosts in Asia mythology try to cause upsets and disturbances. Sri Lanka’s tea country abounds in tales of spiteful spirits and vengeful ghosts who retaliate against those they feel have wronged them.   

Last night Turnbull railed against the Coalition he once led, criticised those who, he believed, had set religion and ideology above his preferred policy on climate change.  

Ghosts, however angry, are generally not given to talking, and certainly not on the national broadcaster.  So Turnbull, the Ghost Who Talks, has point scored, in this, the last Q&A for the year by being allowed to talk,  yet again, on his favourite topic, the Great Betrayal.  

Fortuitously for Australians, who do not, on the whole, believe in ghosts, the Ghost Who Talks may now have relinquished his political presence and like so many other ghosts, ghoulies and things that go bump in the night, turn his attention to other things, instead of continuing to remain as a manifestation of impotent, frustrated wrath. 

Illustration: ABC Television.

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