Australia is to double its purchase of French submarines on the advice of senior defence officials.
A second dozen of the coal-powered, steam-turbine submarines (pictured) designed by French contractor DCNS and based on one of their existing much-larger nuclear-powered models are expected to cost a further $60 billion on current estimates.
They will be built in the electorate of Sturt held by Defence Minister Christopher Pyne. A further $3 billion will pay for the 10-metre deep channel to float the new subs to the sea 35km to the electorate’s west.
Once again, US contractor Lockheed Martin will supply the weaponry and the Pacific, Indian and Southern oceans and the straits and seas to Australia’s north will provide the water they will operate in until blown up in the first few weeks of any major conflict with China.
“This project is essential to my … I mean the nation’s security,” Mr Pyne said in the heart of his electorate as he stood beside the framework of what will be a full-sized papier mache replica of one of the submarines that will appear to be under construction for campaign photo-ops during next year’s federal election campaign.
“Only the Coalition can be trusted to keep my borders … I mean our borders safe,” Mr Pyne said. “Besides, it would be remiss of me not to heed the advice of my defence chiefs.”
The submarine expansion project was the suggestion of the Christopher Pyne Defence Group, Mr Pyne’s local Liberal Party re-election campaign committee and it came on the back of shock Newspoll averages over the past three months showing the Liberals trailing Labor 58-42 federally across South Australia.
“Christopher badly needs this project to ensure a Pyne gap security zone remains in place, voting wise,” committee chairman Fred Chiefs said.
Mr Pyne also announced plans for the RAAF to acquire a further 72 Joint Strike Fighter planes, the Lockheed Martin F-35, at a cost of almost $120 million each.
“The new planes will be built right here in Australia at a new facility we will establish in the Pine Rivers area just north of Brisbane,” he said.
When told by reporters that the new plant would be in the marginal seat of Dickson held by his Cabinet colleague Peter Dutton, Mr Pyne said: “Is it? Pure coincidence. We took the decision based on the advice of a security expert. A former Queensland police officer no less. That’s all I can divulge to you because of Cabinet confidentiality and commercial-in-confidence provisions.”
Treasurer Josh Friedenberg said that as with all Morrison Government expenditure, any extra costs to the Budget would be fully offset by savings.
These would include:
- Asking Rupert Murdoch if he would mind giving back temporarily the $30 million Foxtel was gifted for doing fuck all for televised women’s sport;
- Asking Rupert Murdoch if he would mind paying temporarily the $800 million plus tax bill that was waivered after he helped the LNP win the 2016 election;
- Asking PM Morrison if he would mind temporarily stalling his $50 million Captain Cook monument project until the election was out of the way; and
- Utilising stated but uncommitted expenditure items as outlined in the 2018-19 Budget that had already had savings offsets applied to them.
Prime Minister Scott Morrison slammed accusations by Opposition Leader Bill Shorten that the doubled submarine spend was “pork-barrelling of the worst kind imaginable”.
“Mr Shorten always lies. He’s a liar, plain and simple. He’s also the most dangerous left-wing leader Labor has ever had,” Mr Morrison said.
“He is a deadset threat to our national security and future prosperity. He constantly robbed his workers of their rightful wages and conditions while head of the Australian Workers Union for his own personal and political gain and he is a sycophantic, brown-nosing snake in the grass trying to slither his way into The Lodge on the back of all those dreadful lies just so he can get his feet under the tables of billionaires.
“His $200 billion worth of taxes, demanded by his criminal union puppeteer masters, will leave our nation in a post-apocalyptic state of razed houses, empty factories and with millions of jobless people and retirees robbed of their savings and starving to death in the streets. It will be the perfect scenario for fundamentalist Islamic extremists to take over our country and inflict Sharia law on those of us who survive.
“And don’t just take my word for that. Ask Renee Viellaris, Des Houghton or any other Newscorp journalist.”
Mr Morrison said he would talk to the Treasurer about the Captain Cook monument plans which he had now directed to be expanded with its cost rising from $50 million to $2 billion.
“I can honestly say, hand on heart, that this is a marginal cost increase,” Mr Morrison said.
“As a fiscally responsible government, we’ll be finding the same amount of cost savings, especially by cutting wasteful spending on frivolous areas like health, education, aged care and so on, to ensure the economy’s bottom line is not affected as we return to surplus in 2019-20 after years of Labor’s debt and deficit disaster.
“Josh wasn’t aware that I’ve just signed off on the expanded Captain Cook project which will now cost $2 billion and which will provide a jobs bonanza for people in the Cronulla Shire,” he said.
When asked, Mr Morrison said he could not recall in what federal electorate the new monument would be located until advised by journalists it was in his own seat of Cook.
“Oh yes, that’s right. I remember now. Word association, hey?” he said.
“But don’t forget the bigger $2 billion budget will enable the monument project to be slightly expanded size-wise with extra facilities to be built around the edges of the original site to benefit other local communities in places like Rockhampton, Beenleigh, Gladstone, and Batemans Bay.”
Mr Morrison confirmed the localities he mentioned were located in the very marginal Coalition seats of Capricornia, Forde, and Flynn in Queensland and the southern NSW coastal seat of Gilmore.
“Well, yes, they are,” he said, “but all of them have very direct historical links with Captain Cook. For instance, let’s take a Captain Cook at Bill Shorten… Electricity Bill… Power Bill. He always lies. He’s a liar, plain and simple. He’s the most dangerous left-wing leader Labor has ever had. He is a deadset threat to our national security and future prosperity.”
Mr Morrison also announced plans to shift the ABC to a new base in the southern suburbs of Geelong in Victoria.
“This will hopefully lessen the Sydney-centric, inner-city, left wing, greenie, bleeding heart bias we see so often from our national broadcaster. The type of broadcasting that never looks at Bill Shorten and his $200 billion worth of taxes, demanded by his criminal union puppeteer masters, that will leave our nation in a post-apocalyptic state of razed houses, empty factories and with millions of jobless people and retirees robbed of their savings and starving to death in the streets. It will be the perfect scenario for fundamentalist Islamic extremists to take over our country and inflict Sharia law on those of us who survive.”
Mr Morrison was asked why the new Geelong location was chosen and whether it had anything to do with the fact the ABC would be in the marginal Liberal seat of Corangamite.
“Well, that had nothing to do with it,” he explained, “ but it is a good fit, what with the local MP Sarah Henderson being a former ABC journo, but one of the good ones. One who always strived for factual and balanced reporting of the type that shows Bill Shorten constantly robbed his workers of their rightful wages and conditions while head of the Australian Workers Union for his own personal and political gain and is a sycophantic, brown-nosing snake in the grass trying to slither his way into The Lodge on the back of all those dreadful lies just so he can get his feet under the tables of billionaires.”
Mr Morrison was asked if other parts of the ABC would be relocated.
“What other parts of the ABC? Once we get the Geelong office up and running that’s all there’ll be,” he explained before saying he was pressed for time.
“Any questions before I go? Yes, Renee.”
Renee Viellaris: “Bill Shorten will probably describe your imaginative and job-creating Captain Cook monument project as ‘pork barrelling of the worst kind imaginable’. Would you like to comment on that?”
Prime Minister: “Thanks for the question, Renee. Let’s make no mistake about this, folks. Mr Shorten always lies. He’s a liar, plain and simple. He’s also the most dangerous left-wing ……… oh, look, I won’t go on. You know the drill. Just read Renee’s story.”