Tag Archives: chris joye

“Turnbull Once Said To Me, ‘You Capitalise On Chaos'”

28 May

Leading property industry spruiker Christopher Joye has written an insightful blog post today concerning Malcolm Turnbull, and the present media focus on possible divisions within the Liberal Party.

It’s worth taking close note of Chris’ view on this.

Chris Joye is in a very good position to know something of the way Malcolm Turnbull thinks. The pair go back a long way. They were former associates at Goldman Sachs Australia. Turnbull later chaired the Howard Government’s Home Ownership Task Force, alongside lead author Chris Joye.

After Malcolm Turnbull lost the leadership of the Liberal Party, in December 2009 it was Chris Joye singing Turnbull’s praises in offering support for the idea of a Turnbull-led third party to split the Liberal vote:

Chris Joye, a leading investment banker and former professional colleague of Mr Turnbull’s who also worked with him at Goldman Sachs and sat with him on the previous government’s Home Ownership Task Force, this week used his blog to promote the new party idea.

He said Mr Turnbull moved into politics for the right reasons and possesses “more care, love and passion for this country in his pinky than most of his political peers exude through their entire being”.

“Perhaps following this fracas the big fella will throw caution to the wind and found his own political party,” he said.

“I am thinking of the Australian Republican Party with an unconditional commitment to combating climate change and reinvigorating the dormant republican movement.

“Now that would be sure to split the Liberal Party vote.”

Today Chris has detailed his thoughts on Turnbull’s actions and involvement in the current political fracas:

First, we take as given that Malcolm is very smart and highly strategic. The shenanigans in recent weeks were not just a random bull-in-a-china-shop episode. There was method to the supposed madness.

Chris goes on to outline what might be Malcolm’s assessment of his own political position, before moving on to considering his incentives for his present actions.

Which brings us to the key point in which I strongly disagree with Chris’s base premise:

Next, consider Malcolm’s incentives, which help shed light on his actions. Unlike almost all other politicians, Malcolm currently has nothing to lose. He is extremely wealthy, and can opt out of politics and pursue a life of leisure at his choosing.

Au contraire!

As we have seen (Compassion For Malcolm – He Just Wants His Balls Back), Malcolm Turnbull has something very important to lose indeed.

Goldman Sachs’ “confidential settlement” made on Malcolm’s behalf, to save his hide in the $500 million HIH lawsuit, is the greatest incentive driving Malcolm Turnbull’s political career.

Chris Joye argues convincingly that what we are seeing now, with an ascendant Abbott and the Coalition outpolling the Labor/Greens on an anti-carbon trading policy platform, is Malcolm Turnbull embarking on a “kamikaze” run:

If he truly believes that it is in the best interests of both the nation and himself to lead the party, and have a shot at running the country, he has to create a catalysing event. It is too late for him to stealthily build support with the backbench. Most are now a lost cause. But time and human self-interest are on his side. It is over two years before the next election.

Malcolm’s most powerful solution is to go into Kamikaze mode and compel a ‘survivalist’ partyroom response. This is a risky strategy, but then Malcolm has what is known in financial markets as a “call-option-like” payoff function. He has a helluva lot of upside if he can pull it off. And if he does not, he has little to lose.

The Kamikaze strategy involves blowing up both Abbott and Hockey

Chris’ most telling comment of all comes in closing:

An objective analysis would conclude that there is risk that the polling does not get much better than this. That, surprise, surprise, the party, with Malcolm’s prodding, cannibalises itself. The big fella once said to me, You capitalise on chaos.

A remarkably similar motto to the infamous Ordo Ab Chao.

Order out of Chaos.

%d bloggers like this: