“Oh, my God,” Alice Workman said as Alan Jones was asked about climate change, with Christopher Pyne looking on.
“Oh, my God,” Alice Workman said as Alan Jones was asked about climate change, with Christopher Pyne looking on.

Moment Alan Jones got owned

It started out as a "bloodbath" for Labor.

The questions fired one after the other: Will Labor apologise for its monumental blunder?

How did you misjudge the mood and the intelligence of the Australian people so badly?

Will the term "big end of town" be dead, buried and cremated?

Labor's Shadow Minister for Finance Jim Chalmers - who also indicated he's "considering" putting his hand up for his party's leadership - copped the brunt of the wash-up from Saturday night's woeful loss after he agreed to be on the Q&A panel.

How things could have gone differently on Monday's night's show for Mr Chalmers.

"I was hoping to front up tonight as the Minister for Finance," he said when explaining if he wanted the Opposition leader job.

Instead he was subjected to a string of pointed questions about Labor's failures, and some heated tussles with controversial broadcaster Alan Jones, who turned the colour of his suit when the conversation moved to one topic: climate change.


Of course, it came in the last question for the night.

Will Scott Morrison be able to exercise his influence - as the hero who brought the Coalition back to Government - to bring about change in climate policy, or will the climate change deniers feel empowered to prosecute their agenda again?


As host Tony Jones pointed out to Alan Jones, it's a problematic question for someone who doesn't believe in climate change.

"This is predicated with the argument that the whole nation thinks climate change is the biggest issue in the country," Alan Jones said.

"What is climate change? ... Young people are highly intelligent. They have many platforms from which they can (glean) their information and knowledge. I wonder whether they're being told all the facts in relation to this."

Alice Workman, political reporter at The Australian, lost it midway through Jones' answer, burying her head in her hands.

"Oh, my God," she cut in.

"Alice, you've been speaking for most of the night," Alan Jones shot back.

“Oh, my God,” Alice Workman said as Alan Jones was asked about climate change, with Christopher Pyne looking on.
“Oh, my God,” Alice Workman said as Alan Jones was asked about climate change, with Christopher Pyne looking on.

The 2GB host then went on about how much carbon dioxide is in the atmosphere and reeled off so many numbers in a row, no one could keep up.

"It's 0.04 per cent, and of that 0.04 of a per cent, human beings around the world create 3 per cent. And of that 3 per cent Australia creates 1.3 per cent. So for the 1.3 per cent of 3 per of 0.04 per cent we then decide to have a national economic suicide note."

Everyone was waiting for him to get out a bag of rice (you can relive that moment in the video below), but thankfully Tony Jones stepped in after pleas from the panel to make Alan stop.

"Alan, Alan, Alan, Alan, I'm happy for you to have made that point which you've made many times on radio but it has to be answered by others, and particularly by scientists in the long-term."

Cue applause.

The next round of cheering and applause came when business leader Ming Long was asked by Mr Jones where business gets its advice from about the danger of climate change.

"We listen to the scientists," she said

"We do the analysis. We do an analysis, not just because one party says one thing or another, we look at it from a risk perspective and we look at it from a return perspective. The return from fossil fuels is going to decline long term.

"This is not a viable investment option for our country."

Jones still wasn't having a bar of it.


Scientists? What are they?
Scientists? What are they?


With much of the focus of the evening on Mr Chalmers, the discussion ended on him and whether he would readjust Labor's climate change target if he was to become leader.

"I don't speak for anyone else who might put their hand up, but I do know that in our party we have a view that we need to deal with climate change," he said.

"We need to deal with pollution. We need to deal with rising energy costs. We want to see proper investment in renewables. As Ming rightly points out, that's not just our view, it's the view of the scientists, the economists, the financial institutes, the Reserve Bank."

Jones couldn't help himself to get one last jab in.

"Keep the lights on for Q&A," he snickered.