By Edward Eastwood
Voters in the federal seat of Mackellar awoke this morning to find they had a new candidate for the seat at the upcoming election following the demise of long standing member and rotor fan-girl, Bronwyn Bishop.
Bishop will be replaced by businessman, Jason Falinski who wrested the vote from Bishop, 51 to 39.
The move ends a less than illustrious parliamentary career for Bishop whose time both as the member for Mackellar and Speaker of the House has been littered with scandals and rorts.
Her time as health minister under the Howard government was mercifully brief after she’d voiced enthusiasm for the life-affirming benefits of smoking tobacco.
Shifted to the post of Minister for Aged Care, Bishop quickly came under fire when it was revealed that some aged care facilities had been bathing their residents in kerosene to combat scabies and earned her the sobriquet ‘Kerosene Bronny’.
Long known for her willingness to use the public purse to fund her penchant for traveling to and from theatre, opera and weddings in luxury cars (not to mention Sikorsky’s wunderbar invention), and taking overseas holidays – whoops, research trips, Bishop really hit her straps when elected Speaker of the House by displaying a bias that would have drawn an approving nod from Judge Jefferys.
So, Vale Bronny, few will miss you but not to worry, there’s always a gig at Newscorp come election night 2019.
…and speaking of elections;
Let’s turn the way-back machine to late last year when the MSM reported that Malcolm had received word – well, more like a Papal Bull really, from Goldman Sach’s that wise young neo-libs should always capitalize on favourable polls and go to election, oh, say about April next year. There’s a good chap.
Malc. beamed his patrician smile and assured the media that his government would run full term and as a matter of fact, he’d pencilled April in his diary as the ideal time to schmooze with the state premiers about those wearisome revenue questions. An early election simply wasn’t on the cards.
The matter of why an overseas privately owned merchant bank should be issuing directives on when and when not to hold elections to a head of a foreign government never arose, and Malc was able to avoid all those nasty insinuations that once an employee of Goldman Sachs, always an employee of Goldman Sachs.
And so to the polls we go, albeit a little behind schedule.
Or, will we?
Malc’s notorious for policy back-flips and the raison d’etre, the re-establishment of a discredited body to root out corruption in those nasty unions, is umm… shall we say piss-weak? Yeah, let’s go with piss-weak, and while Malc and the public know that it’s lay down misere the proposal will be knocked back in the Senate for the third time, there’s always the slim chance that the Libs may fold and decide to dig in until September or October and pray that Shorten and the ALP make some monumental fuck-up (not unusual given its history), and hand them government for another term.
In the US, the Bernie Sanders for President campaign appears to be going from strength to strength with Sanders winning seven out eight of the last primary’s, and while the results from the New York debate are not yet been determined at the time of writing, the popular consensus is that Sanders won the contest hands down.
Sanders, whose popularity especially among young voters along with British Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn and newly elected Canadian prime minister Justin Trudeau, are being hailed as victories for Progressives and as indicators of a global shift away from Neo-Liberalism.
Which brings us back to Shorten and the ALP, and the big question: can Bill do it? Furthermore, can the ALP reform itself as a centre left party and rediscover its roots as a party for social justice and reform in time for the coming election?
Nahhh… but it’s likely Labor will shift slightly more to the left and promise more funding for schools, hospitals, universities and to create more jobs etc… in order to win back government, and who knows, they may even keep some of their promises but as for following suit in pursuing the progressive policies of Sanders, Corbyn or Trudeau, it would seem that Australians will have to wait a bit longer to tear themselves away from Conservatism be it the NLP or Labor version.