It should be a one horse race

Yes, it should be a one horse race. Based on performance, on the visions and plans for the next three years and beyond, and on the talent it has on its front bench, Labor should be a country mile ahead. Yet the pundits are predicting a very close result, possibly a ‘hung’ parliament and even a Coalition win. How is it so?

The Coalition has painted the Government as hopelessly incompetent and useless, a ‘bad’ Government, in fact ‘the worst in our political history’. They will not acknowledge anything good at all about it. They insist it must be ‘thrown out’. They hope to con the people into this belief so that the voters will elect an Abbott Government, not because it has something visionary to offer, but because it is not as bad as it paints Labor to be.

So let’s look at what this Government has achieved.

Let’s leave aside the Apology and signing Kyoto, and jump to the GFC. There is an increasing body of opinion that the Government’s stimulus package was an important contributor to this nation’s emergence from the GFC. Even acknowledging the reforms of previous Labor and Coalition governments, the strong state of the economy, the solidity of a well-regulated and capitalized banking system, the support given to the banking sector through guarantees, the interest rate adjustments of the Reserve Bank, and the receipts from the mining boom, all of which contributed to shield us from the ravages of the GFC, there are still a few economists, those who have always opposed the stimulus such as Warwick McKibbin, Henry Ergas and Michael Stutchbury, who persist with the view that the effects of the stimulus were small, arrived too late, and created unnecessary debt. Against that, there was first a letter signed by ten economists, and then an open letter from 50 leading economists applauding the stimulus, and a strong statement from Joseph Stiglitz, Nobel prize-winning economist about how Australia’s stimulus was the best administered in the world.  The Reserve bank itself has applauded the way in which the Bank’s monetary actions in lowering interest rates and the Government’s fiscal stimulus worked in harmony to achieve a good result. With unemployment low, inflation low and business confidence up, Australia has a buoyant economy, largely due to the Government’s actions.

The evidence is overwhelmingly in favour of the efficacy of the Government’s stimulus package. There is no room left to argue. It is only those with partisan bias who refuse to just accept it. Every person whose job was saved, every businessman whose business was saved, ought to be eternally grateful. Unfortunately many seem not to be aware of ‘the bullet they dodged’.

Next look at the much-maligned Home Insulation Program. All the media commentary is about the deaths and the fires, the direct result of shoddy workmanship, shonky operators and fraudsters. There are many in the industry that has suffered losses as a result of this and the consequent cancelling of the program. Any fault that can reasonably be laid at the Government’s feet is its less-than-adequate administrative oversight of the program, one a Government department should have never been asked to oversee. But let’s not dismiss the fact that one million ceilings have been insulated at Government expense with all the environmental benefits that brings, the occupational health and safety regulations that have been upgraded, and that for every thousand homes insulated, the rate of fires was less than ever before.

Take the BER. Condemned at every utterance by the Coalition and by News Limited outlets for ‘waste and mismanagement’, there has been little acknowledgement of its benefits – only a focus on the 2.7% of complaints instead of the 97.3% of schools that had no complaints. The ‘waste’ amounts to around $840,000 in a $16 billion program, an overrun figure commercial projects would readily accept when speed was the essence of the endeavour. Criticism of waste in the program overlooks completely the ‘waste’ that would result from unemployment and business closure in thousands of towns and suburbs, and the misery that would have occasioned. Much of the overrun occurred in NSW where the rollout was achieved most rapidly. As clearly the speed of rollout was the essence of the program, this is understandable.

Two reports: the Auditor General’s Performance Report on the BER released in May this year and the Building the Education Revolution Implementation Taskforce Report chaired by Brad Orgill were positive about the BER and put the problems that occurred into perspective as relatively minor compared with the enormous benefit of the program for schools, schoolchildren, parents, and the community and the value of the program to local business and tradesmen.

Look at the computers in schools program. Julia Gillard insists that the program is on schedule in delivering computers, not way behind as the Coalition paints, and that some 696,000 computers have been funded, and of these, 297,000 have been rolled out and are in use by students. NSW has almost half its allocated computers, while Victoria has about a quarter and in SA about one-sixth. The cost of the programme has blown out by $1 billion to $2 billion, partly because of IT support, networking and software costs. So was it worthwhile? The Coalition talks only of waste and mismanagement, never about the advantage of the computers to the children that have them. The programme could have been better managed but is certainly better than no programme at all. The Coalition says it will stop the program. Too bad about the kids who haven’t yet received their computer.

While on schools, reflect on the implementation of the national curriculum and the MySchool website, major reforms, now accepted by all.

Let’s examine the ETS. The Government has done its best to get its CPRS legislation through the Senate only to be destroyed by the Coalition, even after a deal had been done to pass it. The disappointment of Copenhagen and the erosion of community support for a tax on carbon resulting from Tony Abbott’s Great Big New Tax slogan have made the task even more difficult. Whether it would have been wiser to go for broke and take the matter to a double dissolution of parliament we will never know. But certainly Labor’s deferral of the ETS has caused it electoral pain. But it did try very hard to give leadership on combating global warming. The Coalition killed it.

Look at the advances in the health field. Remember the doubling of funds for health, the increase in doctors, nurses, primary heath care facilities and GP super clinics, the reduction in elective surgery waiting times, the funding of additional beds and the increase in mental health funding, and the major reforms at a national level to integrate health care at federal, state and local level, a reform only partly completed.

Perhaps the NBN is the most important initiative of this Government. All that it means to this nation was detailed in Would Tony Abbott really be stupid enough to trash the NBN?  Yes, he would. There is no need to elaborate here on this essential advance to our society; just contemplate the threat to abandon it in favour of a Mickey Mouse el-cheapo Coalition scheme that is outdated before it starts.

On top of this Labor has an economic plan based on its achievements. An MRRT will net over $10 billion with benefits flowing to reducing company tax, infrastructure, superannuation and small business. It has well-formulated plans for education, health, and an essential NBN.

Add to all this a talented front bench – Wayne Swan, Stephen Smith, Simon Crean, Anthony Albanese, Martin Ferguson, Jenny Macklin, Nicola Roxon, Tanya Plibersek, Penny Wong, Chris Bowen, Chris Evans, Tony Burke, and so on the list goes.

What does Tony Abbott and the Coalition offer?

We know Tony Abbott has extreme ideological positions, that despite his protestations that WorkChoices is dead, buried and cremated, we should not underestimate the power of business to push Tony Abbott to make ‘regulatory’ adjustments to alter individual contract arrangements and unfair dismissal. We’ve seen enough of Abbott in the last eight months to accept that he is very devious yet able to convince people of his ‘honesty’ with an array of weasel words.

We have already seen Tony Abbott’s proposed savage cuts to existing and planned programs in education, health and pharmaceuticals, his intent to abandon the NBN, his intention to reject $10 billion in mining tax, his opposition to a tax on carbon because of his disbelief in the reality of man-made global warming, and some GBNTs of his own. There are some good things: funding for mental health, hospital beds, apprentices and teachers, but many at the expense of other programs that have been savaged.

But what the Coalition is offering – end the waste, pay back the debt, stop new taxes, and stop the boats – even with the plans mentioned above, when compared with what Labor has done, has still in train, and is planning for the next term is paltry in the extreme. And his front bench team is paper thin, light on talent, and its backbench ageing and out of date.

This ought to be a one horse race, but through a combination of Labor’s problems in program implementation, inadequate publicity of its many achievements and plans, and a viciously negative program of denigration of everything the Government has done by Tony Abbott, Joe Hockey and Andrew Robb particularly, aided and abetted by a vitriolic News Limited campaign to unseat the Government, the race is now close. We now have to rely on the commonsense and sound judgement of Australia’s voters to save us from the tragedy an Abbott government would be to this, our country.

What do you think?

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Michael

20/08/2010Tony Abbott has lied throughout the campaign. If that's enough to get him elected, then this country will get the government it deserves.

Lyn

20/08/2010Hi Ad Thankyou Ad, for an absolutely brilliant, wsonderful, fantastic, column again. Also thankyou so much for providing and maintaining "The Political Sword" [b]the best blogg in town[/b]. Isn't it wonderful everybody, we now have 133 regular visitors commenting on "The Political Sword". The work you do Ad is admired by all, also the columns by, Hillbilly Skeleton, Bushfire Bill, NormanK. The quality comments that are posted here are second to none. Thankyou everybody, for your wonderful, genuine, well thought out comments providing enjoyment for all, better than any newspaper I can Name. As Gravel said, we hope you all keep visiting after the election and for years to come. Ad, this election should be, a one horse race, it's hard to believe the farce and drama that has transpired over the last few months. Abbott won't be able to Govern anyway, a hostile Labor opposition, a Green Senate, we will soon see how smart they are. [quote]Coalition is offering – end the waste, pay back the debt, stop new taxes, and stop the boats – even with the plans mentioned above, when compared with what Labor has done, has still in train, and is planning for the next term is paltry in the extreme. And his front bench team is paper thin, light on talent, and its backbench ageing and out of date.[/quote] Even the few mingy offerings, from Mr Abbott, are already starting to crack, today Mr Abbott said "[b]reducing the numbers of arrivals should be good enough"[/b] Abbott eases back on boat people vow , Crystal Ja, The Age Mr Abbott had promised to stop the boats within three months of coming into office, although on Friday he said reducing the numbers of arrivals should be good enough. http://news.theage.com.au/breaking-news-national/abbott-eases-back-on-boat-people-vow-20100820-12s9n.html I hope we are cheering tomorrow, if not, we will still be happy on our blogg, comparing opinions, and talking to each other, I am sure. Cheers

NormanK

20/08/2010Carried over from previous thread. Jason Thanks for the info. Somewhat encouraging news. jj & Colen Could I suggest that you broaden your horizons and actually READ the headline piece here on the NBN, read the follow-up comments and follow the links to sources somewhat more dispassionate than the ones from which you seem to be currently quoting. Recycling myths does no-one any good. Incidentally, the tax-payer "risk" on the NBN is $26 billion not the much-vaunted $43 billion. NBN Co will be responsible for raising the remainder. The overall cost per tax-payer will be zero dollars because capacity on the new fibre will be sold to Internet Service Providers so that they can offer packages at varying rates depending on your needs. If you followed links provided here you would find Tasmanians are paying around $40 per month for 25Mbs. The big bad government will have no ability to censor the internet through filters (which I'm convinced won't actually work because people will find ways around them) since these filters will be attached to ISPs not at some theoretical "head" of the system. The more ISPs who buy capacity, the more there is competition, the lower the price to consumers. Good old market decides eh? There is nothing "faster" or "better" than fibre which operates at the speed of light. This is what future-proof means. The reason private enterprise won't build the NBN is because the return is too low for them to be able to sell the idea to their boards and//or shareholders. Government has no such constraints - provided they recover loans and interest and show a modest profit, the exercise will have been worthwhile economically. You do realise that you could learn all of this stuff for yourselves if you channelled just a little of your angst into decent research. macca "If Abbott wins tomorrow he will have convinced the international community that 22 million Australians are scared of 30 people in a wooden boat" I couldn't agree more. Embarrassing isn't it? NormanK

Graeme

20/08/2010Lyn,Ad et al This blog is one of the things that has stopped me being driven to despair by this campaign. Relying on the MSM for balanced, intelligent reporting is akin to trying to get a dog to waltz; it's just not going to happen. I thought I was a voice in the wilderness, but am heartened to find there are other like minded souls out there. Keep fighting the good fight.Hoping for a good result tomorrow.

Ad astra reply

20/08/2010NormanK Now I've got it - 'seen' is repeated. Isn't it amazing how, no matter how much one proof-reads, these mistakes are missed. Thank you.

Ad astra reply

20/08/2010Michael You are right, but the rest of us have to suffer the government others chose for us. Lyn Thank you for your kind comments. Of course Tony Abbott will not be able to stop the boats, but if he’s elected PM, by the time people realize that it will be too late and he’ll talk his way out of his problem by blaming the previous government. NormanK jj and Colen are uninformed and simply regurgitating Coalition spiel. The Coalition doesn’t know much about the NBN and its technology either – neither Tony Abbott nor Tony Smith, so they wander around spouting incorrect information. Sad. Graeme Thank you for your kind words. I’m glad you find this blog of some comfort. These are testing times – let’s hope that Sunday brings more reassuring times.

Ad astra reply

20/08/2010jj I’m not going to bother responding to your comments until you show me where I labeled you ‘biased’ or ‘mad’.

Lyn

20/08/2010Hi Graeme Thankyou for being one of our favourite commenters. I agree with you, without Ad and "The Political Sword" we would have been driven mad by the MSM, and if you're like me, never able to mention politics in company for fear of upsetting somebody. Funny, I went to vote yesterday, there were 3 guys in the Labor tent, handing out how to vote papers, anyway I had a great old time, telling them my complaints about this election, the whole three listened , and even agreed, wow!. I have new neighbors, I introduced myself today, Angelo a restuarant owner, the husband, said he was worried about the election, he mentioned waste, I said quickly, as soon as I heard waste, "don't worry take a look at the oppositions front bench", that shut that conversation up, quick smart. Graeme, I love your gravatar, he/she has such a nice face, is there a name. cheers

NormanK

20/08/2010Ad astra Thanks for your piece. You are of course preaching to the converted but it does us good to see it laid out so methodically. Regardless of who wins tomorrow’s election, the loser will be Australian democracy. The simple fact that a silk purse has been made out of a sow’s ear means we can not in the foreseeable future trust any candidate who is placed before us. This above all else is what depresses me. All politicians lie, obfuscate, exaggerate and try to portray things in a positive light but the new standard set by the Coalition, the MSM and their buddies mean voters now see all politicians as guilty of “spin” every time they open their mouths. This new empowerment of the public (to recognise what they perceive as spin and give it a catchy name) has undermined their faith to the degree that someone like Abbott can be seen as a worthy option as PM because he ISN’T Julia Gillard. It’s a sad sad world. The only way that there can be a truly positive outcome from tomorrow is if voters defy the polls and Abbott is firmly trounced. The MSM will not be put back in its box but at least they will not be given the satisfaction of delivering a particular political party into office and will have to start all over again. A close Labor victory will vindicate their actions. The government, if returned, should be given every encouragement to amend ownership rules in order to prevent this nonsense from escalating any further. Incidentally, if we think we have got it bad, in the US twenty percent of voters think Obama is a Muslim thanks to relentless propaganda and lies. How do you combat that? I found this on my clipboard from a few days ago. Says it all really. Paul Sheehan [quote]”While the media has done a sterling job of presenting the issues I don't think policy is going to determine the outcome.”[/quote] http://www.smh.com.au/opinion/politics/gillards-pork-pies-hard-to-resist-20100815-1251x.html Allah bless the good ship ALP and all who sail in her.

john

20/08/2010It should be a one horse race, but the ALP stabbed that horse in the back.

Lyn

20/08/2010Hi NormanK You are wonderful, enjoyable, comment as normal. Isn't that sad about Obama, you are so right, what does he say or do. Thankyou for the Paul Sheehan link, yes says it all. Peter Van Onselen said, on Sky this afternoon, the Liberals are already celebrating, Oh! well, pride comes before a fall.

Hillbilly Skeleton

20/08/2010Hi guys! This is probably the last time I can comment before Saturday night at the earliest, as tomorrow morning I am up at 5.30am and off at 6.15 to go set up the booth I am (wo)manning tomorrow. Then it's back home for lunch and down to another booth at the local school with my 16 y.o. son who is handing out 'How to Votes' for the first time for a couple of hours. After that I come back home again for another bite to eat, and then it's back to the local Public School to scrutineer the votes for our 2800 elector booth. After that I might just come home and put my feet up and watch the telly. :) You're right, AA, how is it that the electorate has let itself be led up the garden path by the media and Abbott? All I know is, if the economy was in this great a shape, and Abbott was campaigning for re-election as PM off the back of it, the weathervane wouuld be crowing from the rooftops!

Dong

20/08/2010Thank you so much for your analysis. I feel tremendously let down by the media. I do not blame the public so much. I watched a number of speeches and announcements live on ABC 24 and then saw them totally distorted in the news reporting both on tv and in the papers. I began to question how the prosperity around me could be real if the government really was so bad. I looked at the great buildings going up in schools around the area I live in. The few who became unemployed and wondered how the stimulus could be so bad. Luckily I found your website and Grog's website and found some balanced realistic analysis. Thank you so much for your good work.

Lyn

20/08/2010Hi Ad [i]Hanging on: Labor leads, Libs close in , Phillip Coorey, Brisbane Times[/i] The final Herald/Nielsen poll shows Julia Gillard's Labor government leading Tony Abbott's Coalition on a two-party-preferred basis by 52 per cent to 48 per cent. http://www.brisbanetimes.com.au/national/hanging-on-labor-leads-libs-close-in-20100820-138xv.html

Ad astra reply

20/08/2010Dong Welcome to the [i]TPS[/i] family and for your kind words. Please come again.

Hillbilly Skeleton

20/08/2010lyn, Even the Newspoll swung back towards the ALP 0.5% overnight, as they had only published 2/3 of the poll thus far and now it is 50.5% ALP: 49.5% Lib. All I can hope is that the momentum continues in the same direction until 6pm tomorrow night. Bye the bye, it is a bit liitle, a bit late, but it was nice to see the ALP finally doing what I did and go to the Liberal website and inspect their policy documents to see where they were really coming from. They did it wrt the IR policy, but they could just as easily have done it for all their policies and come up with no small degree of discomfort for the Coalition throughout the campaign as a result. Who knows how it may have affected the campaign?

Lyn

20/08/2010Hi Dong A big welcome to you, thankyou for your welcome comment on "The Political Sword." We do hope you keep coming back, Ad Astra will be very pleased. Hopefully as Janice said ages ago, common sense will win over tomorrow, and the Government will be able to continue the good work and programs that they have began. The polls have been all over the place, so maybe the result tomorrow will not be as bad, as we have been led to believe by the MSM.

Lyn

20/08/2010Hi Hillbilly Boy! have you been busy, good work, you deserve a medal. Yes the polls, well I think the results will be better tomorrow than we have been led to believe by the media.

Hillbilly Skeleton

20/08/2010lyn, I've been so busy I collapsed into bed at 8.30pm last night! I just hope that we get our first duly elected female PM tomorrow and not have to wait until late in the night for a result because I don't know if I'll be able to stay awake late tomorrow night either!

Lyn

20/08/2010Cheers Hillbilly Off you go now, and get some shut eye, we will cheer tomorrow night. We all hope.

Hillbilly Skeleton

20/08/2010lyn, Last comment before shuteye time. A tweeter just said his cabbie told him he had just taken home a bunch of Liberals and they were talking about how they thought they would lose. This was in Melbourne, where Liberal HQ is located. Here's hoping! Back ASAP with tales from the election trail. :)

Hillbilly Skeleton

20/08/2010I forgot to link to this: http://www.sixthsenseinsights.com.au/late-surge-for-gillard-in-both-media-and-public-sentiment/ :)

vote1maxine

20/08/2010AA Another brilliant article. This election should be a lay-down misere for Labor or as you say it should be a one horse race. The fact that it isn't shows the extent that the MSM has undermined democracy in this country. Abbott has no vision for our country only a blind belief in protecting the interests of the vested few ( to the detriment of the national interest) is the best for the country's future. His constant negativity and slandering of a competent future focused government has been abetted by a compliant MSM. He heads a rabble of political delta class operatives who are clearly not ready for the task of Government. I believe there are sufficient numbers of Australians who will judge Abbott and his rabble as unfit for office.

Jason

21/08/2010Morning all, Have a great day I'm off to set up a booth in my electorate (Makin). Lets hope we do well.

Lyn

21/08/2010Hi Jason Good on you, hope you give us your report later today. Cheers

janice

21/08/2010Well, the day has come when the voters put an end to Abbott's aspirations to reside in Kirribilli House. Murdoch and our feral National Broadcaster have done a sterling job in their endeavour to con the people into discarding a good government that saved their bacon during the GFC in favour of a nest of deranged incompetents. Labor WILL win with 80 seats and this nation will have its first elected female PM who will do us proud. This nation will 'Go Forward' with the Guillard Government and achieve great things, while the deranged rabbit goes looking for another way to bring his personal finances back into surplus. Thank you Ad astra and all fellow Swordians who make this site a pleasure to visit.

Lyn

21/08/2010Good Morning Janice Thankyou for giving me so much hope, with your kind and gentle opinion. We are all winners on here, because we have Ad Astra, and "The Political Sword", along with all our very special commenters, contributing daily. cheers

Lyn

21/08/2010[b]TODAY'S LINKS[/b] [i]Election 2010:( Day 35 (or To-morrow, and tomorrow, and tomorrow) Grog, Grog's Gamut[/i] (Though I have to say Abbott coming out and saying he would keep the boats to 3 a year was bizarre. Why on earth would he put a number on it?) http://grogsgamut.blogspot.com/ [i]Newspoll, Nielsen, Westpoll, William Bowe, The Poll Bludger[/i] The Australian reports the 2500-sample Newspoll we were shown two-thrds of yesterday panned out to 50.2-49.8, the decimal place being a feature of Newspoll’s final polling since about two years ago.. http://blogs.crikey.com.au/pollbludger/ [i]Coalition may win the vote but lose election, Mumble, Peter brent, The Australian[/i] unlike many, I believe that if any side wins the vote but loses the election it will be the Coalition. http://blogs.theaustralian.news.com.au/mumble/index.php/theaustralian/comments/coalition_may_win_the_vote_but_lose_election/ [i]Defending the bad against the worse, Shakira Hussein, The Stump[/i] Tony Abbott would be worse. Much worse. And in ways that may not become apparent until he’s safely in the Lodge http://blogs.crikey.com.au/thestump/2010/08/20/defending-the-bad-against-the-worse/?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+CrikeyBlogs+%28Crikey+Blogs%29 [i]A helpful stuff-up, Jeremy Sear, Pure Poison[/i] know the News Ltd tabloids are desperate to get Tony Abbott over the line, but shoving his photo next to a positive ALP policy as if it’s his own? http://blogs.crikey.com.au/purepoison/2010/08/20/a-helpful-stuff-up/?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+CrikeyBlogs+%28Crikey+Blogs%29 Behind the curtain in the land of the Oz, Tim Dunlop BSides [b]The fact that our country survived, almost thrived, through a massive world financial crisis, that in its aftermath unemployment is low, debt almost non existent, inflation under control, and the economy growing well, and that all this -- by a general consensus of experts, including the RBA -- was achieved in no small part because of the economic policies of Labor, apparently counts for nothing.[/b] http://tjd.posterous.com:80/behind-the-curtain-in-the-land-of-the-oz [i]Hanging on: Labor leads, Libs close in , Phillip Coorey, Brisbane Times[/i] The final Herald/Nielsen poll shows Julia Gillard's Labor government leading Tony Abbott's Coalition on a two-party-preferred basis by 52 per cent to 48 per cent. http://www.brisbanetimes.com.au/national/hanging-on-labor-leads-libs-close-in-20100820-138xv.html [i]Election a knife-edge battle: Newspoll , Dennis Shanahan, The Australian[/i] Labor has the support of 50.2 per cent of voters to the Coalition’s 49.8 per cent. http://www.theaustralian.com.au/national-affairs/election-a-knife-edge-battle-newspoll/story-fn59niix-1225907981785 [i] Tony Abbott's miraculous transformation , Laurie Oakes, News Com[/i] The Coalition front bench is another story. It takes a real leap of imagination to see them as a competent alternative government, but - with all eyes on the leader - no one has noticed. http://www.news.com.au/features/federal-election/comment-tony-abbotts-miraculous-transformation/story-e6frfllr-1225908046630 [i]Broadband network the one big issue in a desultory campaign, Mungo MacCallum, SMH[/i]It need not have been like this. Buried in the heap of dross there has been one really big idea, a defining issue, a gulf between the major parties, a potential game-breaker. http://fw.farmonline.com.au/blogs/national-comment/broadband-network-the-one-big-issue-in-a-desultory-campaign/1919004.aspx [i]politics-as-usual «,Gary Sauer-Thompson , Public Opinion[/i] Politics is usually reported as if it were a horse race. Journalism lives for the leadership contest and little else. http://www.sauer-thompson.com/archives/opinion/2010/08/politicsasusual.php#more [i]Election 2010: Last drinks, Massivespray, Spray of the Day[/i] Even the once independent ABC has now jumped into the gutter by reporting headlines and stories from The Australian as gospel without any scrutiny. http://sprayoftheday.wordpress.com/ [i]10 REASONS NOT TO VOTE FOR TONY ABBOTT – Saynotony, Tony Abbott Facts[/i] undoubtedly one of the most backward looking and conservative leaders the Liberal party has ever presented to the Australian people. http://sayno2tonyabbott.wordpress.com/2010/08/20/10-reasons-not-to-vote-for-tony-abbott/ [b]Our friends at the CAFE[/b] [i]Friday on my mind, Miglo, Cafe Whispers[/i] Either way, my life as a Public Servant will change forever from Monday morning. I’ll either be part of some exciting new adventures that are planned by a Gillard Government or I might be one of the 12,000 to be chopped under an Abbott Government. http://cafewhispers.wordpress.com/2010/08/20/friday-on-my-mind-2/

Rx

21/08/2010Abbott says "Worst government in history". Absolute hyperbole, and wrong to boot. The media should have challenged him on this slogan every time he parroted it. I heard on a progressive blog - midweekpolitics.com - that Ben Quayle, son of former Republican Vice President, Dan Quayle, who is running as a Republican candidate in Arizona, is running the very same line against Obama: "Worst President in history". As we can see, the Liberal Party has no ideas of its own. They get by on mantras, either their own dishonest lines or those they've borrowed from the US Right, enthusiastically and uncritically propagated by a biased and partisan mainstream media. What it boils down to is this. If we had anything like a balanced, professional media, Abbott would never have been able to get away with his chanting of moronic one-liners, his policy flakiness, his many flip-flops, and his keeping Coalition costings from scrutiny. A hollow man leading a hollow contender party, running on spin, propelled by a partisan media and motivated by manipulation and negativity. That's why it should be a one-horse race.

Ad astra reply

21/08/2010LYN'S DAILY LINKS updated: http://www.thepoliticalsword.com/page/Lyns-Daily-Links.aspx

Michael

21/08/2010Lyn may have already listed this rather too late (updated yesterday) and altogether too sensible (observe some of the Coalition followers 'comments') article. http://www.abc.net.au/news/stories/2010/08/20/2988558.htm?site=thedrum Would anyone 'out there' have read this and thought it through? That may be a hint as to why Abbott wins if he does do so. Stupid is easy, and ain't he the guy to deliver that?

Lyn

21/08/2010Hi Michael Thankyou Michael for the link to Stephen Long's column. I hadn't listed the link,so it's valuable information for our collection. Shame isn't it, I suppose all the good things will be written about too late. At least we on "The Political Sword" tried our best. [i]Credit where credit's due: Australia's fiscal stimulus By Stephen Long,The Drum[/i] [b]It's no surprise that The Australian - a neo-liberal, pro-free market paper which has been [i]slavishly pro-Coalition [/i]in its coverage - should take a negative view of Labor's fiscal stimulus.[/b] http://www.abc.net.au/news/stories/2010/08/20/2988558.htm?site=thedrum

George Pike

21/08/2010The moronic "worst government in history" line actually came from the most two faced politician in history, Malcolm Turnbull...he used it aginst Kevin Rudd when he was Opposition Leader, (before the day of the long knives in the Liberal camp). The merchant bankers know how to deliver the spiel don't worry...just look at the way they've convinced the American people how they deserve the billions they're making now, despite the fact that 10% of the American people are out of work because of their actions. The ABC and the local News Ltd gutterrag have been running Liberal propaganda ad nauseum down here in Tassie all morning...The Mercury cretins have even run a photo of Julia Gillard as a sour-faced grouch (on their online edition), totally out of character to her real personality...just goes to show how low these parasites will go to try and get the paid parental leave scheme through hey. The strange thing about that of course, is the fact that the Liberals would NEVER bring it in anyway..it is one of the biggest policy con-jobs we will ever see. Just like they pretended they wanted the ETS at the last election, purely to garner the Green vote, this fake policy stunt is aimed purely at the female voter population, and it will be dumped asap should they win. Let's face it, the media are denying the common people the decent education and health system policy platforms that Labor have on the table, as well as denying us the obvious strategic advantages of the NBN, all in pusuit of their own greed driven imperatives. Amazing how shallow the media are really...they are also running their propaganda campaign to protect the billionaire miners and energy corporations...and are denying the working people of this country an extra $100,000 to $300,000 in super when they retire in the process. That is despite the fact that most journalists and media executives will get over a million in super themselves. I hope the progressives begin a campaign that will ensure that each and every media entity and identity will be vilified, demonised and ostracised for their scurrilous behaviour...maybe then they will think long and hard before they dare to commit such brazen acts of treachery against the public again. It looks like Labor are definitely going to win, albeit with a reduced majority...a damn good job considering the despicable behaviour of Murdoch and co's rabble...

Lyn

21/08/2010Hi George [quote]It looks like Labor are definitely going to win, albeit with a reduced majority...a damn good job considering the despicable behaviour of Murdoch and co's rabble...[/quote] George thankyou for giving me some confidence. What Murdoch has done is exactly what happened in the UK, if there is a hung Parliament in Australia, I will blame Murdoch and his hacks, for influencing and confusing voters with distorted reporting. Wonder if they will apologise.

George Pike

21/08/2010Murdoch wants the ABC's foreign broadcasting division...and probably the rest as well....these ugly twisted tyrants will not be happy until they control the whole world I'm afraid..

Ad astra reply

21/08/2010HS Thank you for your comments and your links. I found the Sixth Sense website very interesting, and the current article most informative. http://www.sixthsenseinsights.com.au/late-surge-for-gillard-in-both-media-and-public-sentiment/ The Stephen Long article: [i]Credit where credit's due: Australia's fiscal stimulus[/i] was one of the best argued pieces I have read. While Stephen seems to be somewhat of a pessimist, his arguments are always rational. He seems not to be shackled to a particular economic ideology, like so many commentators are. http://www.abc.net.au/news/stories/2010/08/20/2988558.htm?site=thedrum I hope you have a good day today at the booth, and a happy evening as the results come in.

Ad astra reply

21/08/2010vote1maxine Thank you for your kind remarks. I agree with your comment. Although the polls are tight, they do favour Labor, and I understand the undecideds are likely to break to Labor about 60/40, so the result may not be the ‘cliffhanger’ that journalists delight in predicting.

Ad astra reply

21/08/2010Rx, George What astonishes and dismays me is that the ‘worst government’ and ‘bad government’ mantras can gain so much traction, when they are manifestly untrue. If the criteria for ‘worst’ and ‘bad’ were applied to any government whose programs turned out to be not as planned, ALL governments would have to wear those labels. So it is a nonsense, yet the mantra continues unchecked. Why? I believe it is mainly because the media lets the perpetrators get away with it. They do not ask the penetrating questions that would give the lie to the mantras. Simply to ask: “Does every government whose programs are not perfect deserve to be called 'bad', or 'incompetent', or 'the worst in Australia’s political history'?” might at least challenge the perpetrators to argue their case logically from the facts. But the truth is that the media is not just incompetent in challenging such mantras, they are complicit in their promulgation.

Ad astra reply

21/08/2010Michael Stephen Long is one of the best commentators on economics, free of the ideological bias that afflicts so many commentators, who chose to view the complexity of global economic activity through the prism of their favoured paradigm, and thereby portray a distorted view of reality. George Rupert Murdoch is always lurking in the background seeking ways of increasing his commercial advantage, which is understandable, but more sinisterly his political power, which feeds into his commercial aims. He resents the ABC’s competition with his outlets while being funded from the public purse, as he resents the BBC. He is conservative and his News Limited outlets, particularly [i]The Oz[/i] have stridently worked for the downfall of Labor and the installation of the Coalition. It is a shameful abuse of media power, but Murdoch and his accolades seem devoid of shame. The ABC seems to be allowing his influence to affect its activities.

Lyn

21/08/2010[b]TODAY'S LINKS PART 2[/b] [i]Election day Mega Simulation, Possum Comtatus, Pollytics[/i] With all the pollsters in, we can finally run our final election day mega-simulation http://blogs.crikey.com.au/pollytics/ [i]Why Julia deserves a second chance , Peter van Onselen, The Australian[/i] Gillard should become an elected prime minister . As a political observer, nothing could make for a more interesting three years ahead than watching the Coalition try to deliver what it has promised at this election http://www.theaustralian.com.au/national-affairs/commentary/why-julia-deserves-a-second-chance/story-e6frgd0x-1225907997096 [i]Abbott firms dramatically in final hours, Media Diary, The Australian[/i] As it stands, the government is considered a 65% chance to retain office, while punters consider the Coalition a 35% chance of victory http://blogs.theaustralian.news.com.au/mediadiary/index.php/australianmedia/comments/abbott_firms_dramatically_in_final_hours [i]The lamest campaign questions, Tom Cowie, Crikey[/i] Should tomato sauce be free with a meat pie?” — Blake Pattenden from 106.3 FM Townsville http://www.crikey.com.au/2010/08/20/and-the-wankley-goes-to-the-lamest-campaign-questions/ [i]Tony Abbott: The Man Behind The Mask, Admin, The Daily Bludge[/i] The media has completely and utterly failed to illuminate the public as to just who this man is, what he stands for, http://dailybludge.com.au/2010/08/tony-abbott-the-man-behind-the-mask/ [i]Recognise this?, Stubborn Mule[/i] Nice to see that @the_chaser_ reads @stubbornmule’s blog, but it’d be nice to see a credit http://bit.ly/cmCG3Q http://www.stubbornmule.net/2010/08/recognise-this/?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+StubbornMule+%28A+Stubborn+Mule%27s+Perspective%29

Hillbilly Skeleton

21/08/2010Hi there! Just back at home for lunch, after setting out at 6.15am to set up a booth in my local area. Everything was going well this morning until about 11am, when a man from Liberal HQ in Sydney turned up to our booth. He had obviously been sent to intimidate and harangue the voters in my neck of the woods because this is one seat the Liberals have to win if they are to have enough seats to form government, and as it is only on a margin of 0.1% they are putting a lot of effort and resources into it. Anyway, this guy turns up at about 11am, puts on his Liberal t-shirt, and proceeds to start making sneering and derogatory comments about the Labor Party and me, personally. He kept chanting at the top of his vboice, "Pink Batts! Pink Batts! Pink Batts!", and, "If you want your house to burn down, vote Labor!". Then, everytime an elector came up the path he would place himself in front of the doorway to the hall that voting was in, and lean into their personal space and say, "Vote Liberal, you know you want to". When I said that I had insulation installed in my ceiling and I had no problem with it at all, he said, "You better watch out, your house is gonna burn down, you better get it taken out out of your roof before your house burns down". He was totally obnoxious, and totally intimidatory. Anyway, I reported him to the Electoral Commission when I got home. :) * So now back to another booth in my electorate for more handing out, and thankfully away from that Abbott droog/Liberal bully.

Acerbic Conehead

21/08/2010AA, it should have been a one-horse race, but as you, George and others have pointed out, there has been a fair bit of nobbling going on. However, Tones has kept his powder dry right to the very end and has just released his Election Day theme song. It is based – you guessed it – on TURNING BACK THE BOATS! Issues such as addressing global warming, ensuring employment levels are maintained, just and peaceful international relations are promoted, and ensuring that economic development is ecologically sustainable, are all second- or third-order issues. It is all about THE BOATS! So sing along with Tones’ big-day-out jingle, based on Ray Parker Junior’s, “Ghostbusters”. Remember, he may be bleary-eyed at the moment, but he’s only a phone-call away on the Boatphone. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=g4uxIo4t7xM :- ) Spotted any strange garb in your neighbourhood Who ya gonna call? BOATBUSTERS :- ) If there's something weird Not gospel true Who ya gonna call? BOATBUSTERS :- ) I ain't afraid of no boats I ain't afraid of no boats :- ) If you're hearin’ things Like Labor spin Who can ya call? BOATBUSTERS :- ) A dodgy poll Sayin’ Julia’s gonna win Who ya gonna call? BOATBUSTERS :- ) I ain't afraid of no boats I ain't afraid of no boats :- ) Who ya gonna call? BOATBUSTERS :- ) Heard about Swanny’s debt On your TV set Pick up the phone and call BOATBUSTERS :- ) Sick of Labor hacks And their great new big tax? Ya better call BOATBUSTERS :- ) Lemme tell ya something Bustin' makes me feel good! :- ) I ain't afraid of no boats I ain't afraid of no boats :- ) Y’all know my promises are core So if you just want some more I think you better call BOATBUSTERS :- ) For guided democracy Who ya gonna call? BOATBUSTERS

George Pike

21/08/2010Apparently the Liberals have put up a set of "Turn Back the Boats" posters up at a polling booth where there are a lot of naturalised asylum seekers...lovely little chasps hey!

Ad astra reply

21/08/2010LYN'S DAILY LINKS updated: http://www.thepoliticalsword.com/page/Lyns-Daily-Links.aspx

Ad astra reply

21/08/2010AC Nice take on Ghostbusters. Boatbusting may turn out to be an Abbottbuster if we are so unfortunate to have him as PM. HS That level of aggression is frightening, but not inconsistent with the pugilistic tendencies of Tony Abbott.

Gravel

21/08/2010Wow Hillbilly, you are doing the work of 10 (wo)men today. I am amazed. We have voted, as it is raining here it was very hard to gauge what the feelings were. Last election the how to vote cards were in strong sight with Kevin's picture on them and our booth had a 10% swing to Labor. I didn't see a lot of people with their how to vote cards on display as much this time....don't know what the signifies. We are a rural booth in Corangamite. ( Just to make that a bit clearer, the people voting were holding their how to vote cards close to their chests, so to speak.) For the first time ever we refused to take any but the Labor how to vote card......and it felt good. :-)

tredlgt

21/08/2010 First comment so please excuse if a bit wonky, Thanks to Sword for the opputunity to read ,although some bias, factual stories about this election.I cant read murdochs rubbish without getting pissed so I dont ,but some creeps in via the once Great ABC .I wont miss it when it gets dissmantled IF abbot gets in. Sad isnt it, used to hang on their reporting now cringe. SMH still has good writers but are to few and to many that seem to think they are great writers with wonderful incite and we as readers are lucky to be allowed to share in their wisdom. Anyway once again thanks the informative stories the entertaining comments and the general goodwill on this site it has been oneof the sites that have made this election seem less cranky. Sure hope Bluey and alp win so we can hope again . Will be back.

Hillbilly Skeleton

21/08/2010tredlgt, Thank you for your fine comment. :) Please come back again.

Hillbilly Skeleton

21/08/2010Gravel, Thank you. You know, a similar thing was happening at my booth today, people were refusing point blank to take Liberal HTVs. Tho I will admit it was happening in reverse also. However, to me it seemed as though there were just as many on both sides of the ledger, which is good considering I live in an upmarket suburb. Thankfully we also have a lot of Greenies here too. :)

Lyn

21/08/2010Hi tredlgt Welcome, Thankyou for commenting on "The Political Sword" we all hope you keep coming back, for a long time.

Ad astra reply

21/08/2010tredlgt Welcome to the [i]TPS[/i] family. Thank you for your kind remarks. Do come again after the election. There will be plenty to talk about.

nasking

21/08/2010Ad astra, spot on. Excellent piece as always. Yer posts are so informative and an inspiration for us all. It's been wonderful to have another site that has similar views to our own over at the Cafe and also shines a spotlight on the too oft lacklustre performance...even devious machinations...of the mainstream media...and lack of scrutiny of Abbott & his cronies. Whilst outlining Labor's achievements. Well done. Feel free to stop in on our election party if you feel so inclined...yer always welcome...as we've been made to feel welcome here: [quote]Election At The Cafe (Miglo’s, Not Don’s, Party Edition)…with a little help from some friends[/quote] http://cafewhispers.wordpress.com/2010/08/21/election-at-the-cafe-miglos-not-dons-party-edition-with-a-little-help-from-some-friends/ Fingers & toes crossed...onwards... :) Cheers...I'll be back. N'

Ad astra reply

21/08/2010nasking Thank you for your kind remarks. We have a great group here at [i]TPS[/i], as you have at your splendid blog site. I hope you have a happy celebration tonight. It's been a tense few weeks. We need a break and the relief of a returned government.

Ad astra reply

21/08/2010Folks I'm off to Melbourne now so I'll be on the road for a few hours. Back this evening.

jj

21/08/2010Abbott to be Australia's next PM, yippee!

jj

21/08/2010Gillard to win 70 seats, the coalition 76, independents 3, and greens 1.

bilgedigger

21/08/2010I was taken around to vote this morning and very glad to be able to do it. I'm feeling pretty confident there will be a good result tonight and hopefully there will also be enough Greens in the Senate to prod the Government into negotiating better outcomes. I've split my vote so I could vote Green in the Senate for this reason. Must say I did experience some difficulty with the How to Vote Cards. I had intended to place "The Murdoch Group" and "Big Business" last on the Senate ticket but could'nt find them. Of course it is possible that they stood for election under another name (or many other names), but I did spot the usual suspects masquerading as Liberals, family first, shooters party, recreation etc. etc. etc. Can't celebrate tonight other than having a cup of tea. Too many medications at the moment so I'll save the champagne for a few more weeks yet. I hope all on this site have a good evening.

bilgedigger

21/08/2010P.S. I didn't mean "all on this site" having just noted jj's comments, but I think you get my drift.

jj

21/08/2010bilgedigger, i am afraid the champagne might just have to wait for another three years. Coalition to win 76 seats.

Lyn

21/08/2010Hi Bilgedigger Sorry you are not feeling well, I hope you get better soon, then you can throw the tablets away. Glad you got to vote. cheers and best wishes

Lyn

21/08/2010Hi Ad and Everybody Morgan [b]SMS exit poll: 51 - 49 to Labor, [/b]William Bowe, The Poll Bludger The sms Morgan ‘Exit’ Poll uses a controlled panel – The Roy Morgan Elector Panel. http://blogs.crikey.com.au/pollbludger/

Lyn

21/08/2010 Hi Ad Possum on twitter 15 minutes ago: Pollytics Galaxy exit poll - ALP 52/48. [b]All exit polls consistent[/b]. #ausvotes 15 minutes ago via TweetDeck

George Pike

21/08/2010Exit polling in Herbert has Labor 10% in front...

NormanK

21/08/2010Lyn Thanks for the links and updates - I may actually be able to eat some tea now. I hope your nerves are holding up. bilgedigger Sorry to hear that you are not well. Here's to a speedy recovery. Tonight I will be happy to celebrate with a glass of tap water if the outcome goes the right way.

George Pike

21/08/2010Labor 10% ahead in Latrobe too..

Lyn

21/08/2010Hi Everybody very funny: Now this is how you do News, Possum Comitatus, Pollytics http://blogs.crikey.com.au/pollytics/

Ad astra reply

21/08/2010Folks Back online and watching Channel Nine which is making a 'game' of it with Michael Kroger, Mark Abib, Peter Costello and Barnaby Joyce. ABC1 looks better.

Bobalot

22/08/2010Tony Abbott might be Prime Minister. This is a total disaster for Australia.

Ebenezer

22/08/2010Wow, how disappointing tonight was. Gillard needs to form Government, because if Abbott is able to cobble together a Government they will be there for another 13 years taking credit for the hard work Labor did during the GFC. Hope this teaches Labor a lesson about dumping a popular PM.

Hillbilly Skeleton

22/08/2010We.Held.Robertson.!!!!! We even got a swing to us! IN NSW! :)

Paul of Berwick

22/08/2010And the convention is... 1. Gillard to see the GG to swear in her minority government 2. Abbott to test this with a no-confidence motion The outcome would involve a lot of (media) people getting upset ... I take heart in 1. the principles guiding the independents and 2. that the numbers may well change (from percentages based on previous results to AEC raw numbers) http://www.reuters.com/article/idUSTRE67K1JO20100821

macca

22/08/2010It would seem that we are now a country that knows the price of everything and the value of nothing...very, very sad. However; I'm going to chuck on the billy, Light a smoke, Think about what needs doing, Hitch up me strides, And with no hair pulling, teeth gnashing or bleating get on doing what needs to be done....one step at a timed.

Glorfindel

22/08/2010We should be saluting the sheer political genius of Abib, Shorten et al. They have managed to create a situation where Tony Abbott could become prime minister of this country. I would have thought that to be impossible, but there you have it. Anybody who still thinks that dumping Rudd was a good idea and that Gillard was the ALP's top performer and that the timing of the election was not a botched rush job please walk into a room full of mirrors and take a long hard look at yourself. This is a disaster, a few months ago Rudd and Gillard were the best things the ALP had. Now both are irreperably damaged. Further should Abbott win government he will be likely a minorty government in a greens dominated senate. Which would mean that the Abbott government would be mitigated by the circumstances of the parliament. It is possible that such a government could be a 'good' government and, riding on the programs of the Rudd government, enjoy a very successful 3 years.

Lyn

22/08/2010[b]TODAY'S LINKS[/b] [i]Election 2010: Day 36 (or, a hung dog expression), Grog, Grog's Gamut[/i] Whatever happens from here, the ALP needs to reform itself – and firstly get rid of those advisors who sit in Parliament House for 16 hours a day watching 4 TV screens http://grogsgamut.blogspot.com/2010/08/election-2010-day-36-or-hung-dog.html [i]D-DAY plus 1, William Bowe, The Poll Bludger[/i] As you can see by the threads below, there are five seats still in doubt as far as I’m concerned, though it’s not unknown for outsiders to emerge on the radar late in the count http://blogs.crikey.com.au/pollbludger/ [i]Abbott likely to seize power Oh!, JJ Fiasson, The Daily Bludge[/i] I have no doubt, no doubt at all, that Murdoch has become a master manipulator in political affairs around the world. I think he sees Australia as his test bed for new ideas. His plaything, if you will. The media is so concentrated here that public opinion is much easier to sway. The USA is a different beast. I’m certain that he has an entire division dedicated to fine-tuning public opinion, shifting views, indeed manufacturing consent. He is the modern day Machiavelli and thus one of the most powerful men in the world http://dailybludge.com.au/2010/08/abbott-likely-to-seize-power-oh-fck/ [i]Minority government: how it works,Christian Kerr, the Australian[/i] “Rob Oakeshott hasn’t done as well as he did at the by election, for example, so I’m predicting a minority Abbott Government.’’ http://www.theaustralian.com.au/national-affairs/minority-government-how-it-works/story- fn59niix-1225908317895 [i]How I voted 2010, Andrew Elder, Politically Homeless[/i] First, who did I hate? Communists, fascists, racists-who-don't- want-to-appear-racist? One Nation fitted that bill so they got no. 11 http://andrewelder.blogspot.com/2010/08/how-i-voted-2010-i-voted-in-bennelong.html

jj

22/08/2010An Abbott Prime minister-ship, this is a great day for Australia! As i have said all along, the Australian people dont like being treated like mugs. That is what this government did, and so they deserve to spend another 12 years in opposition.

kerry

22/08/2010Hi All, Just want to say thanks for all the informative reads Ad, HS - great stuff lyn - you're amazing - i have you to thank for all the fabulous links I guess I did think this blog was a little too biased at first because I just wanted to thrash out the issues rather than read 'propoganda' (that is not an accusation by the way) but I soon realised that you all suffered from a huge dose of integrity and were, in fact, thrashing out the issues. Well, I ended up voting Green in the Senate and HoR (and Lab2) in safe Lib seat McMillan - I notice from antony green's site that there was a small swing to Labor here. I really think the rot started when Penny Wong started the negotiation with Ian Macfarlane, I think she fell for Macfarlane's flattering comments about her intelligence and she started dismantling a good ETS policy and it ended up a great big fat nothing. I think the Greens were right to reject it. I think Rudd should have called a DD - even though he kept insisting that he wanted to serve a full term - if he'd done so, immediately Turnbull was rolled, Abbott wouldn't be seen as some sort of miracle worker uggghhh!! Keep up the good work

Michael

22/08/2010Welcome back to John Howard's Australia - small-minded, selfish, and venal.

Ebenezer

22/08/2010Glorfindel you are 100% correct about the disaster that befell Rudd and now Gillard. Krouger (spelling) said last night on the nine coverage they should just put Shorten in right now and be done with it. Thats the only time I will ever agree with him. Shorten broke it now he can have it. If they cant form a Government who will lead Labor? I still think Rudd would have won, bit of a sore point now though. Anyway I will leave it to the rusted on lefties on this site to explain to me what a marvelous campaign Gillard ran. Best coverage of the election by a country mile was the ABC, and I thought SBS was rather good also. As usual Nine try to make it about them and their panel rather than the election itself.

George Pike

22/08/2010Don't give up yet people! There are still a lot of postal votes to get through, 1.2 million of them in fact. As Peter Costello pointed out last night, Labor has automatically got the Green and Tas independent vote, so they could go to the gov general with a majority and would very likely be handed the government back based on incumbency. The three other independents are also hinting that they are more likely to support a government that will be supported in the senate and one that will do more for the regions. As Labor is the only side that has shown such political will to do exactly that; with the NBN, EHealth, infrastructure spending and a clear intent towards migrating urban population to the regions, it would be very much in the interests of those three people to back Labor as well. The independents will have the best of both worlds by backing Labor, they will be able to kill off anything they don't like in the House of Reps...then be virtually assured that anything that they do pass will be passed in the Senate as well.(after June next year at any rate) They would also have the massive benefit of the NBN to parade to their constituents...as well as the EHealth and superclinics which will enable them to point to the fact that they can expect vastly superior health services in their regions as well as the continued expenditure on their local schools etc. The regions have also been hugely critical of the Liberal's paid parental leave scheme, as it heavily favours the wealthy women of the urban areas. There is very little that the independents would find attractive with ANY of Tony Abbott's polices, so I think we have a very strong chance of seeing Labor retain power as a minority government and go on to become a force in their own right eventually. If anyone knows the three independents, it may pay to pass these points onto them, but I think, from seeing what they had to say last night, that it is very likely they will fall in behind Labor anyway. Anyway, one thing can be assured, the way the crowd were singing out what sounded horribly like Seig heil, Seig heil, Seig heil..to Tony Abbott last night, prior to his "victory" speech, it will pay us to stay on focus until the war is definitely over! The crowd and the Liberal leader here in Tassie did exactly the same thing at the last state election, and Labor and the Greens ended up forming a minority government that has so far been very successful, so the writing is already on the board in a way. Sorry for getting it wrong and for making it look safe early in the peace last night, that's the last time I ever place ANY faith at all in exit polls from Roy Morgan!

Lyn

22/08/2010Hi Kerry Thankyou so much for your kind compliments, & thankyou for your comment. I am so glad you enjoy this blog "The Political Sword", I hope you stay here for a long time, and leave your very worthwhile comments. Ad Astra has a very amicable approach & opinion, and always makes a genuine effort to understand everybody's point of view, this is how "The Political Sword is framed by Ad Astra. Kerry I agree with your comments, even the DD, also we were all very upset about Kevin Rudd being sacked, things have happened that's how it has turned out. Welcome to everybody's opinion, that is what life is all about, interesting comments, I love them all. cheers

Lyn

22/08/2010Hi George I have been sweating on your comment, dying to hear what you have to say. Congratulations in Tasmania. Not very often I agree with Peter Costello , but he did give a very fair and balanced opinion last night. And George I gave up on all the polls last week, Antony Green it the best to listen too. How nasty, at the Abbott speech all the Liberals boohed when Abbott thanked Julia and at the Gillard speech when she thanked Abbott, the Labor party clapped. cheers

Paul of Berwick

22/08/2010Interesting article in The Age - the voting patterns of the independents... http://www.theage.com.au/federal-election/the-independents-set-to-hold-the-balance-of-power-20100822-13a9z.html

George Pike

22/08/2010I have just written to Rob Oakeshott and pointed out just how badly the people of Tasmania will be treated if the Liberals gain power. I think it is going to be exactly the same for all regions in the country, especially with the dropping of the NBN, so it may cut through to him. Keep your fingers crossed at any rate!

Lyn

22/08/2010[b]TODAY'S LINKS PART 2[/b] [i]The Leader's speeches and what comes next in Federal Election 2010[/i] Let’s be clear about one thing: just as Labor very clearly did not win this election, neither did the Coalition. There’s no basis for claiming that the Australian people voted to “stop the boats, end the waste http://larvatusprodeo.net/ [i]Balance lies with gang of five, ABC[/i] "But it's going to obviously be several days before the public will know whether they are going to be able to get a stable government http://www.abc.net.au/news/stories/2010/08/22/2989849.htm?WT.mc_id=newsmail [i]towards a hung parliament ,Gary Sauer-Thompson , Public opinion [/i] They are not working, and like Question Time, they have become an embarrassing farce that is celebrated as political theatre. http://www.sauer-thompson.com/ [i]The Aftermath, Reb, Gutter Trash[/i] Ultimately we get what we deserve, http://guttertrash.wordpress.com:80/2010/08/22/the-aftermath/

Ad astra reply

22/08/2010Folks Thank you for your comments. I've been totally absorbed with the election count and the post mortems this morning. I'll respond to your comments later, maybe in another piece that analyses the outcome to date.

Ad astra reply

22/08/2010LYN'S DAILY LINKS updated: http://www.thepoliticalsword.com/page/Lyns-Daily-Links.aspx

macca

22/08/2010Well, the personal angst has died down a bit and, lo and behold, the future still beckons. Meanwhile, the past, Was it a good idea to remove Kevin Rudd? IMO an emphatic NO!......the man had "street cred", regardless of what any simperingly gutless ABC or Murdoch timeserver tries to tell,you. Any doubt?.... look at the Qld results. Did Mr Rudd bring about his own downfall?.....unfortunately yes. Although it is interesting to note that he didn't appear to get too much help from his cabinet colleagues. Let's be honest,,,the man took on the Murdoch empire and international mining cartels at the same time and he gave them a shake up. If he showed us anything, he showed us how venal and corrupt these entities really are. Next time we will be more prepared. Murdoch.....you are on notice! Don't think that that's a big threat Rupert?....cop this one mate....seven million Australians hate your guts...and believe me, cobber, we'll get you. In the end we"ll get you. My postmortem on yesterday is pretty simple. Labor not only lost the courage of their convictions,they traded them for pretty cheap, ultimately futile, political gain and that's exactly what they got. Governance should have kept them in. Politics got them sacked. A lesson for all future politicians, I would think. An interesting question; Should the indipendants join with Ms Gillard and form a minority Labor govt....how will they go when the Murdoch dirt units, ABC lackeys and the big money start their attacks. Will they have the courage to stand up to them? Will the labor party support them? Will we, the people most affected, stand by them? Who knows

NormanK

22/08/2010[b]CUTTING THROUGH THE POLL-DRIVEN BACKFLIP SPIN OF A WASTEFUL FOCUS GROUP FULL OF REAL FACELESS MEN IN LEAKY BOATS SMUGGLING BACKSTABBING LEADERLESS POLICY-FREE PARTIES INTO AUSTRALIA AS PART OF A PEACEFUL INVASION BY AN ARMADA OF VISIONARY DEBT AND DEFICIT.[/b] Hung parliament? Not in a male appendage sense - more like an emasculated democracy. I’m not sad because my horse lost the race. I’m dismayed that the Australian population has behaved just like every other group of humans - collective IQ of 20, short-sighted, selfish and with the short-term memory of a goldfish. Standby for the recession we had to have (in order for a new generation or two to understand what real hardship feels like). macca - your advice is always sound so I’ll be preparing my garden for Spring.

Ad astra reply

22/08/2010Folks There are mixed feelings here today. jj is ecstatic, and predicting, somewhat prematurely, an Abbott Government. Bobalot sees this as a disaster. So does Glorfindel, who is also angry at the Labor internal machinations. Ebenezer and macca are sad. macca starts a post mortem and kerry ponders what went wrong and when, as does Ebenezer. Michael is dismayed at a return to the Howard era. HS is pleased that, against the trend in her electorate of Robertson, Labor was elected with an increased majority. Paul of Berwick describes the steps to form a minority government and give us useful links to Reuters and the voting patterns of independents. George is optimistic and shows that there is a lot more to be played out for both sides. The future is not easy for either. Lyn is, as usual, helpful, supportive and welcoming to visitors. I think the best I can do is to put together a preliminary analysis and post it separately for your comment.

vote1maxine

22/08/2010I think that the only way Abbott will be PM is if the Liberals get a majority in their own right. I can not see this happening as Minchin conceded last night(but with pre-polling and postal votes to be counted, it is a possibility). I believe a Labor-Green-Green Independent-Independents Alliance Government is a real possibility. Labor (sitting on 70) need to win 71 + Bandt + Wilkie + 3 Independents = 76 If the 3 Independents stick to their commitment of aligning themselves to the party that can provide stability as the overriding factor then the above can work for the following reasons: 1) Only the above Alliance can provide stability in BOTH HOUSES. 76 in the Reps and 40 in the Senate. 2) There is a more natural synergy between Labor and the Greens (compared with Coalition and the Greens). Thus Labor and the Greens can work cooperatively well with one another. 3) There is no love lost between the 3 Indies and the Nationals. Truss and Joyce working cooperatively & happily with Katter, Windsor & Oakeshott would be hard to believe. 4) A lot of Labor policy (NBN, GP superclinics, eHealth etc)is more regionally focussed and beneficial in contrast to the Coalition's. 5) Windsor & Oakeshott believe in and want action on CC. Katter is a skeptic but I believe could be brought around with soil & forestry carbon sequestration and biofuel production. These are significant contributors of a carbon mitigation scheme that would particularly benefit rural & regional Australia. 6) Labor's PPL scheme is more equitable to rural & regional women without imposing a 1.5% tax. Contrast this to Abbotts keep the rich mamas happy in the lifestyle they have been accustomed to. Even a lot of Nationals find this hard to accept. I'll let others who are better informed to carry out the inevitable post mortems. I think we need to focus on how we can move forward with the cards the electorate have dealt. Personally, I see this "hung Parliment" as a great opportunity to get real reform enacted by consensus for the long term benefit to our great country Australia. natural synergy between Labor and the Greens and to focus on the Coalition as the real enemy. The need to keep Workchoices at bay, taking immediate action on Climate Change, making Australia a digital economic superpower and continuing to improve Health & Education is gotta be more important than petty politics.

vote1maxine

22/08/2010Whoops forgot to delete the last paragraph. AA we need a preview button!!!

nasking

22/08/2010I was pretty depressed & feeling deflated this morning. But, now I realise it could be worse. trying to get my positivism back. :) When looking at my own state of QLD I reckon that that Bligh/Fraser’s stubborn position on the “privatisation of part of QLD Rail coal haulage operations etc.” didn't help at all. My wife’s swing voting parents were really pissed about it. And the privatisation of our water in this area…and the prediction by state Labor on electricity prices being more affordable after privatisation. Add the health department's wages cockup. Real stuffups I reckon that didn’t help. Add the stabbing of Rudd. And the fact we are a one paper city up here. Tons of bashing of Labor by the Courier Mail. ABC QLD no better. Not surprising thinks turned for the worse here in QLD. Sadly. I like Anna Bligh...but she has some real work & mending to do. State Labor has done great things for some of our schools here...and brought in some necessary infrastructure...but some decisions have not gone down well at all w/ the public. And I guess there's no point naval-gazing over the Rudd knifing (which I blame partially on the media)...we won't ever know what difference it made in QLD due to the fact those state issues I mentioned previously also made a diff in relation to TRUST in Labor generally. Just a few thoughts on the matter. Thnx for all the links Lyn...great job by you, Ad astra & Hillbilly and yer fine contributors during and before the election campaign. Highly informative. N’

Hillbilly Skeleton

22/08/2010Good morning everyone. :) Well, it's the morning after the night before, and time now for reflection. Let me just start by offering my opinion about who will ultimately form government. I think(hope,pray) it will be Julia Gillard. I believe this not because she is from the party that I am a member of, as I am trying to be 'fair & balanced' as usual when discussing matters of moment, but because she will be the one to persuade the Independants, who all are principled men with the memories of elephants, that she is the person with the positive plan for the country that will take this nation forward, regions and rural areas included. What may ultimately be Tony Abbott's ultimate downfall will be the arrogance of the Liberal Party when they think no one is looking, and they thought no one was looking over the last 3 years when Kevin Rudd was Prime Minister with soaraway ratings and power, and the Independants had none. This was the time when the Coalition, and especially the Nationals, because Katter, Windsor & Oakshott all are former National Party MPs, continued to wage their personal jihad against those guys, so that they may win their seats back at subsequent elections. They are probably regretting it now this morning, but it is too late. It will be the case again, I think, that Coalition hubris and bully-boy behaviour will be the Achilles heal that stops them flying high. That is, unless these Independants turn out to have no morals at the end of the day, which I don't believe will be the case. Also, as I said we won in Robertson against all the odds. We, the former seat of the infamous Belinda Neal, were rewarded by our electorate for having the guts to do what the Labor Party as a whole is afraid or unwilling to do. That is, purge the party of the talenless, ambitious apparatchiks, and go out and find candidates who do not necessarily have direct ties to the union movement, but who are sympathetic to their cause and place in society, and who are vivacious personalities and persons of ethics, morals and intelligence. Oh, and in this televisual age, they must look good. If you have seen our candidate you will recognise the fact that what we found in Deborah O'Neill, was the mirror ALP image of Tony Abbott. Self-effacing but confident in herself and comfortable in her skin, a warm and genuine personality who just loves being with people, fit and active and connected to the community through her family intimately(her daughters are World Champion Irish Dancers). Oh, and her daughters are as stunningly beautiful as Tony Abbott's daughters. :) So Robertson is the glimmer of sunshine in an otherwise dire picture for Labor after yesterday's election, except in the home States of Julia Gillard. And as they say, sunshine is the best disinfectant. So it should be a lesson and a leitmotif for the ALP, that if they want to get back into power in the States of NSW and Queensland after the next electoral rout which is on the horizon there, then they have to make the BIG changes to the party that we forced through, by dint of force of will, in Robertson. Then the electorate will reward them, as they rewarded us yesterday. With a swing back to the ALP. Because I also believe that, instinctively, we are a warm and generous-natured people who is naturally-inclined to favour the genuine ALP, just not the apparatchiks, power-brokers, union careerists and advantage-seekers who see power as a means to their ends.

Hillbilly Skeleton

22/08/2010I love this blog. I love it, I love it, I love it! :) So much high quality reflection and comment and lack of animus. Let's keep this show going, especially if Tony Abbott wheedles his way into the Prime Ministership. Let's spend the next 3 years doing to his government exactly what the Murdoch Press and their sycophantic toadies in the ABC have conspired to do to the ALP government over the last 3 years, and what the Coalition have conspired to do to the government in the Senate. The battle begins today!

Lyn

22/08/2010Hi Hillbilly I'm with you babe. I love this blog too and I keep on telling Ad, so he doesn't forget I believe the Labor party did fantastic, considering what the Murdoch press did to them, proves we don't need Murdoch anyway, the spiteful lies of the Liberal Party.. The most obstructive opposition in 30 years. Yes Macca I agree with you (" In the end we"ll get you") Rupert.

jj

22/08/2010Reading all of your glum comments has just brightened up my day. i live in the electorate of Tony Windsor, (New England), and my electorate is an extremely conservative one; they say that in Tamworth there are only 2 paid-up Labor Party members. Windsor may have defected from the National Party many years ago, but his electorate would never forgive him for siding with an unpopular Labor Government. Windsor was born and bred on the land, and he now lives on a farm near Werris Creek, (not that you would know where that is), and many of the issues he is/has been trying to address are ones such as: -Freeing up land clearing laws for the farmers of the region -making changes to native vegetation laws, (at least try) as to stop farm land from being taken over by what most would describe as uncontrollable weeds) -Upgrade the various bridges in the region (Nats have an infrastructure fund to do this) -Upgrade our local dam (Nats support this and have brought it up many times before) -do everything possible to prevent coal mining on the Liverpool Plains, (Nats support this cause) -Upgraded broadband services (Nats have an affordable plan to focus all efforts on improving such services in regional areas) -At many of the local schools there have been issues over the BER program -Water is quite an issue All in all this is a conservative member of the parliament, whose main constituency are those from the 'bush' and regional towns and villages. So to just let a bit of air out of your already deflating balloon i would just say that the chances of him siding with you mob are at around 0. If he did side with the Labor party, (even though he has a large margin), he knows he would be in trouble from the Nats. As for the other two, well they will look to Windsor for guidance, as he id the only one who has the experience of such a parliament in his history. 76 coalition & independents, 74 Labor & green, Independent.

Lyn

22/08/2010Hi Nasking Glad you cheered up Nasking, I love your comments. Hang in there, there could be very interesting times to come, maybe this will sort out the weavels & weezels. I believe because of the Newspapers distorted headlines and stories, they have confused the public, the result of course is many people would have mucked up their votes, instead of voting the way the ticket instructed them. Cheers

Jason

22/08/2010jj You'll have to work fast because once the senate changes then you have to haggle with the greens.Forget what the Nats might stand for start looking at what the greens want.

jj

22/08/2010Jason, i thought the first priority of both parties would be to get the three conservative MPs' onside, and then worry about the rest later.

Jason

22/08/2010jj, point being no matter who forms government, you have to deal with the independents in the house as well as keeping backbenchers happy one only has to jump ship then what? then July next year the Greens in the senate as well.

Hillbilly Skeleton

22/08/2010jj, Don't be such a condescending conservative. I know exactly where Werris Creek is. You don't know what sort of connection to the country any of us here have, and to suggest that the country areas are naturally conservative, as you are, just displays the narrow-minded, blinkered vision you display in spades. You obviously missed the endorsement of the ALP by the NSW Farmer's Federation. All that you will ever represent is a bigoted, conservative point of view. Nothing more, nothing less. And definitely no voice of rural Australia. Just another conservative small businessman with small ideas.

Hillbilly Skeleton

22/08/2010jj, You also obviously didn't see Tony Windsor say today that both major parties are conservative to his way of thinking.

Acerbic Conehead

22/08/2010AA, it looks like the horse-trading has started and Tones is on his marks and trying to convince the Indies and Greens to put him in the big house. Sing along with him as he woos the new king-makers. He’s joined up with those ageless arch-rockers, Status Quo, with their classic, “Whatever it Takes”. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=krK7Q49o6uA&a=GxdCwVVULXcObc7ImyIKPF8bcGtLDYH5&playnext=1 :- ( Whatever you want Whatever you like You pay your money You take your choice Fibre optics Ethanol rules Combines – not mines I can’t refuse :- ( You’ve got a grip On my budgies Kickin’ me up the ass With your RM Williams’ You take it all You squeeze me dry And now today You take more and more of Joe’s pie :- ( I could take you for a spin On my weathervane again I could make an offer you can`t refuse :- ( Whatever you want Won’t turn back the boats They paid their money They can tend your goats Whatever you need They can harvest your beans I’ll even agree to Gay marriage for the Greens

Ad astra reply

22/08/2010Folks I've just posted [i]If you come to a fork in the road, take it[/i], a commentary on the election result and the issue of forming a minority government.

Ad astra reply

22/08/2010AC Again great satire - you may be interested to read the piece I've just posted [i]If you come to a fork in the road, take it[/i]. http://www.thepoliticalsword.com/post/2010/08/22/If-you-come-to-a-fork-in-the-road-take-it.aspx

Ad astra reply

22/08/2010HS Queensland has been Labor’s nemesis this time after being its champion last time. It’s hard to fathom. I’ll try to later this week. Tonight on ABC’s [i]7.30 Report[/i]. Anthony Green seems to think everything hinges on Hasluck where Labor’s candidate is fewer than 400 votes behind the Liberal candidate, with postal votes to come. Each party is on 72 definite. If Labor wins Hasluck it will have 73 and with the Greens Adam Bandt who will support Labor, and with a win to Labor in Dennison, or a Wilkie victory, it will have 75 and be close to a minority government. If the Coalition wins Hasluck it will have 73, and if supported by the three independents, would have 76 and be able to form a minority government. Of course there is no certainty at all, especially hearing them speak tonight, that they would throw their weight behind the Coalition. So it’s Hasluck – let’s hope it’s Goodluck.

Ad astra reply

22/08/2010AC I wonder whether Tony would be prepared really to give them 'Whatever It takes'? That might stick in his craw, especially when it comes to boats and gay marriage.
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