Thursday, August 26, 2010

Labor Minority Government has Logic

If the final result of the Australian Federal election is 72 ALP, 73 LNP, 1 Green, 4 Independents, then logic seems to indicate a Gillard Labor Minority Government.

The three former Nationals (Bob Katter, Rob Oakeshott and Tony Windsor) want a stable government that runs a full term of 3 years. If they go with their ideological home, giving the LNP 76 votes, then one by-election could cause a general election if the other independent Andrew Wilkie does not support the LNP. If they side with Labor then the margin is 77-73 with a one seat buffer.

If the result is 71/74 then the logic reverses with an Abbott conservative government more likely. Lots of counting left in Corangamite. Update: make that Brisbane.

Sphere: Related Content

Monday, August 23, 2010

Now for the Nationals Broadband Network?

While we wait for Sharryn Jackson to win Hasluck, a little speculation surrounding the unthinkable alternatives.

Will urban Australia help to fund a country version of the National Broadband Network? a country version of the education revolution?

Who would be the real losers if the $10 billion from the Resource Rent Tax goes west.

Were the mainstream media aware that Nationals and ex-Nationals were likely to decide our political fates?

Was the agreement between the 3 conservative independents mentioned publicly during the campaign? Did any journalists ask them about any wheeling and dealing? (I was out of the country for the 8 days before election night so I missed a bit.)

How many disgruntled voters realised that Warren Truss would be Deputy PM in a coalition government?

How much nasty stuff might still sneak through with Fielding's vote before July next year?

Sphere: Related Content

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Andrew Robb's Tax-funded Junk Mail

It's the fourth piece of election junk mail from our local member for Goldstein, Andrew Robb. He's the shadow finance minister. His claim to fame this week is that he knows more about Broadband than Tony Abbott.

The latest Robb Report is a party political attack on the "Rudd-Gillard government".

We've heard a lot from Robb about wasting taxpayers money. What hypocrisy! The pamphlet has the following:

The material has been produced by Andrew Robb MP using his printing and communications entitlement.

Taxes, in other words!

It's a blatant piece of electioneering that should be paid for with Liberal Party funds. It's irrelevant if other members of parliament from other parties do the same. It's a disgraceful rort. He's right about one thing - there is a need for real change. This blatant propaganda would be a good start.

The part that tickles me most is the pretence of having a local focus. The only local article is one on funding of the Bentleigh Cricket Club under a Coalition initiated Volunteers Grants program.

He's given up taking credit for local schools projects since his miserable attacks on the stimulus program. I posted about this rank opportunism last year: Andrew Robb's Wanton Waste

All mention of these types of projects has been removed from his website. Have to wonder if he still attends the opening of new Science classrooms or the like in Goldstein.

PS Andrew, please stop ignoring our junk mail sign!

Sphere: Related Content

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Taking a Step to the Right with Tony

Thanks to Crikey for the link. The Tony Abbott Time Warp:

Sphere: Related Content

AM Fails PM's Q&A

ABC Radio National's AM program this morning was politics-as-entertainment at its worst. Its coverage of Prime Minister Julia Gillard's appearance on the ABC TV's Q&A last night was dismal.

They mentioned all the non-core aspects: her marital/childless/atheist status, the ranga, the former Labor leader's behaviour, her voice. Anything but policy! The audience asked many testing questions on key election policies such as refugees and climate change. Lolita O'Donoghue's final question about the lack of any coverage of indigenous issues went uncovered by AM.

Not good enough.

It was followed by a very soft report about grey nomads and the election from a caravan park in Forbes. AM seems to have an identity crisis. Is it hard hitting journalism or a lifestyle program.

Sphere: Related Content

Monday, August 9, 2010

Abbott-Truss Government No Laughing Matter

Oz Politcs as Standup Comedy

Glib one liners are no substitute for political ideas. Punchlines don't replace policies. Tony Abbott has the gall to accuse Labor of "gutless spin". Campaigning should not be a reality show, mixing nastiness with big new lies or slick distortions.

It's the child of the advertising ethos: repeat the mantra often enough and people will change brands.

Tony Abbott and Warren Truss (he's the alternative Prime Minister) have turned political debate into farce.

Their idea of government is cutting programs: national broadband, e-Health, schools and infra-structure. Truss' roads promise is a perfect example. It mocks their 11 year inaction in this area and their opposition to the mining tax that would help to pay for it.

Do we want another decade of wasted opportunities? An Abbott/Truss government would be no laughing matter.

Sphere: Related Content

Sunday, August 8, 2010

It's the Same Labor who...

Join my 'It's the Same Labor who...' campaign

Complete this sentence for the Coalition and tweet it.

My suggestions:

It's the Same Labor whose stimulus saved us from recession and 10% unemployment

It's the Same Labor who's giving us National Broadband

My twitter:

Sphere: Related Content

Friday, August 6, 2010

Julia versus Tony: who's behaved better?

A guest on ABC Radio National Life Matters program just said in a non-political context:

The best predictor of future behaviuor is past behaviour.
Interesting criterion to apply to our leaders. Forget the control of the campaign, what can we learn from their past actions and attitudes.

Who are the real Julia and Tony. The new campaign Julia is really the old one. The one that was welcomed when she took over the country.

The real Tony hasn't been seen much this election season. He's suddenly a moderate who can smooth over his climate change denial, his lacklustre ministerial years in immigration, industrial relations and health. His notorious insensitivity. His lack vision or any real plan for Australia.

I've already voted so the rest of you can do your homework on which leader has been and will be better behaved. I'm off to Malaysia with Th!nk3: Developing World for the week before election day. Get back 8 PM on Saturday. Will definitely be suffering campaign withdrawal DTs on the flight home.

Sphere: Related Content

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Where in the World is Warren Truss?

I'm trying to watch the real alternative Deputy Prime Minister Nationals' Warren Truss at the National Press Club. It's not easy. He's parroting the WA State slogans about the regions. He's proposing regional programs for the regions in areas like education despite the Coalition's vacuum on education policy.

He's proud of stopping the Emissions Trading Scheme that the National Farmers Federation strongly supported.

He seems to proposing a national hospital system. Wonder what the Western Australian colleagues think about that?

Lots of rhetoric and little detail or new programs. They must be the new green party going by their campaign slogan Think Local, Vote National which is of course a contradiction in terms. Is that a fancy way of saying pork-barrel? How come the media aren't caning the Nats for that one.

He's struggling on stay-at-home mothers versus paid parental leave, that has split the Coalition.

Waiting for a testing question on the National Broadband Network that the Coalition is against but his own members are keen about.

On water, he's quite open about the fight with Tony Abbott over his proposed referendum to take over the Murray Darling.

Anyway most people think Barnaby Joyce is the Nationals' leader. Haven't heard much concrete from him lately. Perhaps his minders are afraid the real Barnaby might have a "things that batter" moment like Tony Abbott's 'when Julia Gillard says "no, she really means it"' gaff yesterday.

Couldn't see Laurie Oakes in the audience. Might explain how few really probing questions were asked.

Sphere: Related Content

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Abbott's Strong Pain for the Economy

Just been watching Coalition Shadow Finance Minister Andrew Robb on ABC24 try to maintain he is pleased by the Reserve Bank decision to keep interest rates on hold. He obviously lives in a different economy from the rest of us.

Sphere: Related Content

Tony Abbott To Cut Overseas Climate Aid

We are already into a core/non-core promise about overseas aid from Tony Abbott, Julie Bishop, Andrew Robb and Joe Hockey. From Oxfam Australia:

Coalition costings submitted to Treasury yesterday show Opposition Leader Tony Abbott has broken his promise to match the Government’s commitments on overseas aid, Oxfam Australia said today.

“Mr Abbott has gone back on his word and will cut spending to Australia’s aid program if elected,” said Oxfam Australia Executive Director Andrew Hewett.

Yesterday, in election commitment costings submitted to Treasury, the Coalition outlined at least $294 million in spending cuts from the aid budget, including funds that were earmarked to help poor countries deal with the impacts of climate change.

However, on 23 April, in a foreign affairs speech to the Lowy Institute, Mr Abbott re-affirmed that the “Coalition would match the Government’s commitments on overseas aid”.
Abbott’s cuts to aid budget a broken promise to world’s poor

I must have missed something at the Goldstein Make Poverty History electoral forum. Andrew Robb promised the world. But then it's easy to cut climate change funds when you're on about re[al] action.

The current Opposition Finance shadow minister Robb seems to reading from Barnaby Joyce's script now:
THE government is demanding the opposition restate its commitment to increasing the foreign aid budget after its finance spokesman, Barnaby Joyce, advanced an argument for paring back aid levels to pay off debt and fund Coalition election promises.
Joyce in firing line after aid blooper

You can hear Bishop trying to squirm out of this betrayal of the developing world on Radio Australia: Australian opposition proposes cuts to overseas aid

Was that promise in writing Tony or did you just make it off the cuff? Just a little white lie perhaps.

Sphere: Related Content

Monday, August 2, 2010

Get the Billionaires Off the Barricades

Fortescue Metals Group's Andrew Forrest is leading the "small" miners against the labor government's proposed Rent Resource Tax. According to their own website Fortescue's Market Capitalisation was approximately $13.67 billion as at 03 May 2010. Small beer! Twiggy's own wealth has been estimated at $4 billion.

Join the Fair Go For Billionaires Campaign!

Let's get the billionaires off the barricades.

Sphere: Related Content

Tony Abbott Stands For Reaction

Tony Abbott Stands For Reaction!

Sphere: Related Content

Sunday, August 1, 2010

Progressive Oz Blogs

Looking for some lively election coverage that goes beyond media obsession with leaks, polls, fashion and trivia? Here are are few websites to follow, if you aren't already:

Hoyden About Town

Grog's Gamut

North Coast Voices


The Political Sword

Larvatus Prodeo

Cafe Whispers

This list is far from exhaustive but these sites have lots of good links.

If you find a telling post, share it far and wide across the blogosphere.

Sphere: Related Content
Back to Top