the real tony .....
from politicoz ….
Tony Abbott declared that he offered an apology to Malaysian prime minister Najib Razak for drawing his country into the ugly Australian asylum seeker debate.
"He knows that we play our politics very hard in our country," said Abbott, retreating from his party's criticisms of the treatment of migrants in Malaysia.
This is becoming a pattern of behaviour for Abbott. The previous day he was signalling China that he now welcomed open trade, despite earlier statements that it would "rarely be in Australia's national interest" for Chinese state-owned enterprises to buy up Australian assets.
Last week he was backing away from the Coalition's bare-chested policy of turning/towing back boats, telling President Yudhoyono of his absolute respect for Indonesia's sovereignty.
In a similar vein, Australia seems no longer to be suffering a 'budget emergency', and the Coalition has suddenly gone quiet on 'waste and mismanagement' following the travel entitlement controversies.
Abbott has generally been applauded for taking a different ('mature', 'statesmanlike') approach to politics, befitting his new role.
Undoubtedly this incarnation of Abbott is preferable to the previous one, but it's striking how little the statements and promises of four years in Opposition are worth in the eyes of the new prime minister.
It's also worth thinking about the scrutiny and accountability being applied to the new prime minister by the media. Compare it with, for example, the treatment of the Gillard government, whose early 'backflips' and 'dishonesty' dogged it in perpetuity.