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With Gough’s passing, it’s time to think about where we are headed.

Today’s passing of Gough Whitlam has left me today with a heavy heart, along with so many other people in this country. To simply reflect on how one man has progressed this country like no other, is overwhelming. I believe as a collective, we don’t really stop and appreciate what we have. We do take our wonderful country, our people and our existing social support systems for granted. So many things we would not have without Gough Whitlam. Thank you, to a great man.

Like many others, I spend my days and nights thinking about the Abbott Government and worrying about their next plan or policy that could harm us now and for generations to come. I worry about the deals in the Senate and what destructive policy may slip through for approval. I worry about the vulnerable, the disadvantaged. I worry about families, teenagers, the elderly and young children. I worry about our nation’s first people. I worry about our environment, entire communities, particularly in rural and regional areas.

I have realised, that I am part of a collective, that in reality is taking part in a war; but we use our voices, not guns.

I know this, as I know there are many like me, who stay informed and are active and do everything we can to prevent Abbott’s destructive policies and plans for our communities and country. (and to these people I say thank you.)

Last night, I was researching the IPA’s influence on our Prime Minister. For those of you who are not aware of the IPA., they class themselves as the “independent, non-profit public policy think tank, dedicated to preserving and strengthening the foundations of economic and political freedom.” In a nutshell, they are a union. Not the type of union that fights for rights and equality, but one that aims to demolish rights and equality through their right-wing ideological view of what Australia should look like.

On the 4 April, 2013, Tony Abbott promised the IPA that he would adopt their ideas. Some of the IPA’s ideas adopted or flagged as intended by our Prime Minister so far are:

  1. Repeal the Carbon Tax
  2. Abolish the Clean Energy Fund
  3. Repeal Section 18c of the Racial Discrimination Act
  4. Introduce fee competition to Australian Universities
  5. Cease subsidising the Australian Car Industry
  6. Introduce a special economic zone in the north of Australia including:
    a) Lower personal income tax for residents
    b) Significantly expanded 457 Visa programs for workers
    c) Encourage the construction of dams
  7. Repeal the Mining Tax
  8. Privatise Medibank
  9. Privatise Australia Post
  10. Cease Funding the Australia Network

For those of you who may have thought that the Abbott Government thinks up their own ideas, sorry to break it to you, but…no…as you can see above, an un-elected party – IPA runs Australia.

The above list is from a more extensive list titled “Be Like Gough – 75 Radical Ideas to transform Australia.” The title is not admiration of the left, but the right’s intrigue of how Gough Whitlam radically transformed this country, with such a lasting legacy in such a small space of time.

With Gough’s passing, it is time to take a look at ourselves as a country and how we want to progress and what are we prepared to lose.

What struck me as I was completing this research was a quote from the IPA’s John Roskam, James Paterson and Chris Berg’s article:

Only radical change that shifts the entire political spectrum

AND

And the public’s bias towards the status quo has a habit of making even the most radical policy (like Medicare, or restrictions on freedom of speech) seem normal over time.

How will we be shaped by the Prime Minister’s enthusiasm to adopt and enforce policy under the direction of the IPA? So many people at the moment are up in arms about freedom in the current climate of war and ISAS; but so many of us calmly sit at home and not realise what terror is upon is on the domestic front.

The reason why it is so important to stop and really take in what is happening here is, what does this IPA list really mean and what should we take from Abbott’s eagerness to adopt this list?

Essentially, the IPA has requested Abbott push the country as far right as possible, so it then becomes adopted by the public as the status quo and becomes normal over time.

As we sit around complacent and taking for granted our University system, our health system, our industrial relations protections, our right to live peacefully and not be racially vilified, a social welfare safety net and a basic minimum wage; we need to stop and think that with the wrong Government it could all be gone.

Everything mentioned above, that we enjoy, take for granted and cannot simply imagine not being there are also on the list of the IPA to attack, destroy and disintegrate. A list that Abbott is so keen to ratify.

Stop and think for a moment. If Abbott & the IPA’s agenda pans out; right-wing, neo-liberal ideology will become the norm. Can you imagine one day for it to be normal to scoff at the idea of a Government wanting to introduce bulk billing doctors and free medical treatment? Stop and think about that.

Gough’s “It’s Time” campaign was central to motivating the people of the country to recognise it was time for change. Time to move beyond the selfish, stagnant, egoist policies of a Liberal Government and progress. Malcolm Fraser said today that the Liberal Party has jumped leagues to the right and the ALP has jumped leagues to the right from Whitlam.

It is time to speak up about progress, to want it, to desire it so much it hurts. It is time for the opposition to lead the country back to the left. To set a solid platform for strong change and progress. Real respect for Gough starts with respect and commitment to the legacy he left for us. It’s time for change.

Gough’s policies changed Australia forever, in a very good way. The best way and the way forward. It only takes one election to have us put our guard down. To be complacent, to donkey vote, or to take slogans as something meaningful and promising for our nation, rather than seeing them for the vapid, empty, soul-destroying agenda’s that they really are.

Gough Whitlam’s passing today really highlights how destructive the Abbott Government is. It is heartbreaking our country has come to this.

Originally published on Polyfeministix

58 comments

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  1. Ruth Lipscombe

    Thanks.Excellent coverage.
    What a contrast Whitlam versus the unspeakable abbot.

  2. corvus boreus

    Trish Corry,
    I too am appalled by the dystopian vision of the IPA ‘radical’ list, and the enthusiasm with which many of these non-vetted proposals are being implemented by the current government.
    When the dots are joined, the implications of the broad picture are horrifying.
    Perhaps the influence of ‘Think tanks’ (aka group jerk-fests justifying industry predations, social deconstruction and ideological manipulation) upon public policy needs to be examined.
    I suggest it could be one of the terms of reference for the obviously needed and publicly demanded federal ICAC that Shortens’ Labor stands in solidarity with the Coalition in vehemently opposing.
    P.s. I think Labor has actually drifted to the right of Malcolm Frasers’ politics, let alone those of the much mourned Gough Whitlam(rest his soul).

  3. Kerri

    Superb article Trish Corry.
    I emailed a number of shadow cabinet members earlier this year and suggested a move to the left and back to Labors roots using those precise words…,,.,, It’s time !!!!
    I implored them to take a more humane stance on asylum seekers and to distance Labor from the right wing madness of the Abbott Government.
    I have been trying to educate my kids and their friends on what Gough achieved and why voting is so important in today’s political climate.
    We do what we can and we are grateful to have people like yourself and the AIMN to raise awareness and maintain the rage and enthusiasm. Thank you.

  4. Terry2

    What a stark contrast between the achievements of the Whitlam government in three short years, with a hostile Senate and the miserable and mean achievements of this IPA sponsored regime.

    The sad irony is that this government will use their abysmal and shameful treatment of refugees as their major achievement in office during their first term and, as their principle stratagem to get them reelected in 2016 – and it will probably work.

  5. Alyn

    Clarity of performance is one thing but unless the instigator has at core direction of Nationalistic requirements then any objective entailed only amounts to Smoke and Mirrors of actuality. Perhaps a vetting of all Politicians (current & Future) needs to be orchestrated before acceptance.

  6. Kaye Lee

    It’s also worth remembering Julia Gillard’s achievements in 3 short years – carbon pricing, mining tax, NDIS, Gonski, NBN, Murray-Darling buyback, water trigger legislation, marine park extension, clean energy finance corporation – the list goes on. In one short year Abbott has basically trashed everything she achieved and is working his way backwards to also unwind Gough’s achievements.

    Yes they will use their success in stopping the boats and Labor are morally bankrupt in stopping them. They will also use the lie about projected debt and deficit to try and say they have reduced both. It kills me every time the girlinator says “Laboor’s debt of $667 billion and deficits of $123 billion”. They MUST stop this refrain NOW and keep repeating the REAL debt and deficit projections from PEFO and point out that the figures Hockey is using are projections with HIS policies and HIS spending decisions and HIS choices to forego revenue. Instead they sit back and allow these lies to pass.

  7. mikestasse

    Radical change is coming alright…… but it’s not from the clueless IPA.

    I reckon that within five years neither you nor the IPA will recognise the place. The economy will have totally collapsed under a mountain of unrepayable debt, climate change will have gone inot overdrive, and fuel shortages will be common. Maybe even food.

    Nature bats last.

  8. trishcorry

    Thanks everyone. There is more. But it if we don’t keep blog posts short, people lose interest and the message can be lost. So please go and have a look at the list, it is linked into the post. I was so odd that I was researching the IPA / Abbott agenda the night before last and I picked up during the qualitative analysis of the speeches, what the agenda really is here. It isn’t about fixing this or fixing that; if you have a good look at what is being said, it is about pushing us so far to the right, it will be hard to come back, and we may very well, never will.

  9. trishcorry

    Hi Kaye, Yes, I have thought about the attack on Gillard’s legacy. To me, it is personal and it is not. It is not personal as I believe it is part of a wider agenda set by the IPA. If you read through their papers, they are very opposed to a national curriculum. Apparently a national curriculum is some radical idea that breeds leftists thinkers – and we can’t have that, can we?

    I think it is personal, as Abbott would personally try to do whatever he can to ensure Gillard does not have a legacy that is spoken about in years to come. History will treat Gillard kindly. I do not believe history will treat Abbott kindly at all.

  10. Kaye Lee

    The IPA have a very simple agenda. They want government to become so small it vanishes so their corporate donors can run the show for their own benefit. To allow this to happen they must keep the working class uninformed and malleable. You can achieve this by keeping them in debt and scared about their job security.

    The IPA is home for aging Young Liberals and is a hot bed of nepotism. Look no further than the 70th birthday bash in April last year. Andrew Bolt was the MC. Gina Rinehart spoke. Tony Abbott gave the keynote address in praise of Rupert Murdoch calling him the greatest Australian. Dennis Napthine was there as was Melbourne mayor Robert Doyle. Alan Jones and George Pell were there as was George Brandis. Brandis obviously had a fun night with Tim Wilson because as soon as he got the power he sacked the Human Rights Commissioner for the Disabled and rang Tim to gift him a job as Human Rights Commissioner for Bigots on a salary of about $380,000 a year. Forget the fact that Tim has no relevant qualifications or experience and had written at length about the need to abolish the HRC. Forget the fact that he was not required to apply for the job or attend an interview. Forget the fact that they have abandoned the legislation he was installed to promote – the repeal of section 18c. For that price, Tim was happy to put aside his previous disdain for the HRC.

    One thing that particularly annoys me is that the IPA have charity status so don’t have to pay tax.

    It’s also worth noting that Bill Shorten was John Roskam’s best man at his wedding.

  11. Kaye Lee

    John,

    The following link is an interesting read about Shorten.

    Bill’s eye for the main chance didn’t surprise those who had closely watched his rise. Referring to him as ”Showbag Shorten”, one unionist observed a pattern: ”He’s got an ego, which is OK in politics, but if there’s no loyalty then what? The ‘discard after use’ label applies to most of us.”

    ”Bill is a future champion,” the late Senator John Button once quipped. ”I know that because he’s told me.”

  12. John Fraser

    <

    Gough Whitlam spent 8 years in parliament before becoming Deputy leader of the Labor party.

    Gough Whitlam spent 7 years as Deputy leader of the Labor party.

    Gough Whitlam spent a further 5 years before becoming P.M. ….. and during all that time Australia was moribund in relation to politics.

    Bill Shorten spent 6 years in parliament before becoming Leader of the Labor party.

    Bill Shorten has had an armchair ride through parliament.

    There's part of the problem …….. with the current Labor party.

    Australia has never been more politically alive now, than at any time in its short history.

  13. Trish (@Trish_Corry)

    (Kaye Lee)………..It’s also worth noting that Bill Shorten was John Roskam’s best man at his wedding..

    WTF!!!!!!!!!!

  14. Kaye Lee

    But his friend John Roskam is ready to vouch for him: “I can understand the question, ‘Is he to be trusted?'” says John Roskam, “because at times he can be all things to all men. But I’m a mate of his and from my experience he can. I’m obviously biased, but I think he cares.”

  15. John Fraser

    <

    There's to many unanswered questions around Shorten.

    Beginning to look like an (honest ?) Obeid shadow.

    Really a piss poor choice of Leader.

    All over all types of media the same thing is being said about Shorten but they just refuse to bite the bullet and get the pain over and done with.

    Please readers don't start banging on about Albanese being the one ….. he not the one to be P.M. and in all likelihood he is aware of it.

    At best Albanese would be a good LOTO for the short term …… and the short term has passed.

    An election could be called at any time.

  16. Trish (@Trish_Corry)

    There is a lot of talent in the ALP for leadership and PM. Something needs to be done. Escalation of Commitment, based on a narrative set by the Abbott Govt (leadership change is chaos) will do nothing but damage the party.

  17. oldfart

    Wilkie has lodged a complaint with the ICC and asked them to investigate govt’s treatment of asylum seekers as crimes against humanity.

  18. John Fraser

    <

    I make no secret of the fact that I thought Shorten was an "ambulance chaser" during the Beaconsfield mining disaster.

    I thought he was an opportunist then and still is now.

    Pushing the NDIS was just another example of Shorten pushing his own barrow ….. who's going to attack him for that.

    Good Link Kaye Lee.

  19. John Fraser

    <

    @Trish

    Leadership change will hurt the Labor party in the short term.

    But not changing leaders will hurt everyone in the long term.

    Labor has to bite the bullet and put up the candidate that their polling tells them has the best chance with the electorate.

  20. townsvilleblog

    Trish, I couldn’t agree more, the first thing we must do at both State and federal levels is to have a membership ballot to elect our parliamentary leaders and make sure that they are people of determination and of vision as the Hon E.G.Whitlam AC QC was and that they are passionate concerning egalitarianism instead of totalitarianism, as the great man was. Vale Gough Whitlam.

  21. mars08

    “I find it offensive that there is the great man’s legacy with the Greens political party logo on it,’” Mr Albanese said.

    “I find that inappropriate. I think that is an attempt in an opportunistic way to appropriate Gough Whitlam’s legacy as somehow for the Greens…”

    Strong words from a Labor politician in October, 2014. Seems that many, many, MANY people think that Albanese protests too much….

    https://m.facebook.com/home.php?refid=8&_rdr#!/story.php?story_fbid=833786449988802&id=537762462924537

  22. trishcorry

    Mars08 – It was totally appropriate for Anthony Albenese to stand up and say that it was offensive. As a member of the Labor party, I find it offensive. Regardless of what the Greens stand for, they never have had to navigate the system and implement their policies for real and defend them. They have never had to implement policy with other constraints to consider, such as any Govt who has held power has had to do. Gough was a Labor man. He never stood with the Greens.

    I agree we need to shift to the left, but Albenese is from the left of the party. Gough Whitlam was 98 when he died. He was a proud Labor man. Malcolm Fraser left the Liberal party, because they did not stand for what he believed. Gough Whitlam did not. He is idolised amongst members of the ALP. I understand the intent behind what the Greens were trying to do; but in this instance, it was in poor form. The Labor party are also opposed to these changes. They didn’t use his death as a political opportunity. If you really think Labor is the same as Liberals, why have so many policies been blocked in the senate? If Labor was Liberal version 2, and passed their reforms, we would be living in a system of chaos and degradation and stigma for the poor and disadvantaged. As a member of the party, I am aware of the reforms happening and I have faith in the reforms. Radical change would tear the party apart at present. Change needs to be incremental.

    If it were not for the Greens tearing down the ETS, we would never would have had a Carbon Tax, there never would have been Juliar, and without the Carbon Tax and Juliar etc., over her head Gillard would have been able to lead in her own right, the challenge from Rudd would never have gotten up, as I truly believed she would have been very popular. Gillard also left a legacy of reform, that has been overshadowed by the bullying rabble of the Abbott Govt, with the Carbon tax given to them on a platter for fodder by the Greens. For all the good things they stand for, history was changed during that time and in many ways, we have the Greens to thank for Abbott.

  23. John Fraser

    <

    @Trish

    I'm more inclined to think that Gough Whitlam would go along with any publicity is good publicity as long as they spell your name right.

    Gough Whitlam had an excellent lifetime of putting things into his own context.

    Just writing this makes me laugh thinking of what he might have said.

    Vale Gough Whitlam.

  24. Trish Corry

    I am really over the comments from people stating that Labor is the same as Liberal. I must have missed the “passing the budget after party for the Liberals” considering they have so much support from Labor. Attacking a brilliant, compassionate man like Albo? Seriously. Simply over today. No wonder the Right are in power. The reason parties have moved to the right is evident in my blog above. Research shows that the right move further to the right and the left pull it back. The extremes to pull back after the ‘right’ becomes norm, can create the illusion of ‘too far too soon’ This is exactly what Abbott is trying to do now. If they succeed and what they stand for becomes the norm; the Greens will look and sound like they belong in the loonie bin. We also need to remember that people have voted over a long period of time for these changes, both left and right. We no longer live in 1972.

  25. mars08

    trishcorry… go ahead and be offended all you like.

    As I see it, the Greens were noting Gough Whitlam’s contribution to a progressive Australia, by highlighting his government’s dumping of uni fees.

    I used to vote Labor… both state and federal. But that was many many years ago.

    My conviction in the things that mattered to me didn’t change, but Labor’s position did! And it didn’t happen overnight! I watched it happen and hoped the slide would stop or, at least slow down. It didn’t… and here we are.

    Open your eyes, trishcorry… it’s not that a huge number of progressives turned their backs on Labor… rather Labor intentionally abandoned them. Can’t you see how many are BEGGING Labor to reinvigorate it’s progressive side… but the ALP number cruncher’s are just not interested.

    If that’s the path Labor policy-maker have chosen… fine. If they honestly think that is the path to election victory, then go for it! Just don’t expect all Australia’s progressives to quietly tag along.

  26. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    Trish,

    I would love to share your belief in modern Labor, but I have become disappointed in Labor’s stance on welfare.

    For example, Labor’s rigid position regarding the limited economic safety net policy for people on Newstart, and forcing single mums onto Newstart as opposed to the Parenting Pension are two such disasters.

    Also, while I’m disgusted by Morrison’s cruel and harsh stance on asylum seekers’ rights, Labor’s stance has also disappointed me.

  27. Dissenter

    Excellent article Trish. That the IPA has such great influence over government just as Murdoch does is proof that in spite of appearances Australia is no longer a democracy.If parties are corporate guided or guided by lobby groups disguised as think tanks then it is clear that democracy is not being practiced.
    There are many things that have to be done in relation to corporate lobbyists and donations and lobby groups like the IPA and many others: – they must be banned.
    It is essential that political parties are free to determine their own policy and agenda without interference from vested interests.
    This is the role of government to review the interference of lobby groups and make such decisions and until it is done all MPS in state and federal governments Australia wide are failing in their responsibility to their voters the people of Australia.

  28. John Fraser

    <

    @Trish

    Not so much "attacking" Albanese as commenting on his prospects.

    Don't you think it passing odd that both Labor and Abbott are doing their best to destroy The Greens ?

    They can go as hard as they like but it will never happen because The Greens replenish themselves with every new generation.

    Whereas …. like me …. voters change from term to term their support for the majors or Oh ! god perish the thought, go with The Greens.

    There's policies I don't like with The Greens …. but the Abbott/Shorten policies are just as equally unacceptable.

    While The Greens may never govern Australia giving them my primary vote with seepage to Labor is the best option for me ….. until they get a LOTO and policies that I respect.

    If you attend Labor party meetings I suggest you stop looking through rose coloured glasses, vox populi people outside your comfort zone and then let your Labor branch discuss what you have found and make representations to the powers that be.

    Even my wifes quilting group loathes Abbott but say they don't see much in Labor.

  29. Scott Clarke (@Winetosser)

    Well done Trish. I’ve been an ALP supporter all my life, as was my father before me. I feel the party has taken a large step to the right and would like to see that corrected along with a generous humanitarian approach to asylum seekers. Whether that happens or not, the passing of Gough Whitlam, who epitomised my political awakening at just 11 years of age, has inspired me to join the ALP. For better or worse, I will carry on the good fight that Gough began to the best of my ability.

  30. corvus boreus

    Playing join the dots with the IPA shopping list.
    14; Abolish ACMA.
    15; Eliminate ‘balance’ media requirement.
    16; Abolish TV spectrum licensing.
    17; End local TV content requirement.
    27; Eliminate media ownership restrictions.
    47; Defund Australia network.
    50; Slice up and sell ABC.
    51; Sell off SBS.
    69; Immediately halt NBN rollout and sell off what exists.
    My interpretive line drawing; Potential foreign owned media monopoly of all print and broadcast media, including national broadcasters, without any regulation or oversight, with technological restrictions to access of internet information..
    Put simply, the direct and distinct possibility for Rupert(master of hacks and hackers) to own it all and say whatever he feels like, without any restrictions, investigation or publicly disseminated voice of unbiased coverage.
    A choice between closeted ignorance and saturation of misinformation.
    In totality, this picture, is almost as scary in combined implications as point 77 on the supplementary list on its’ own.
    Point 77; ALLOW FOR MINISTERS TO BE APPOINTED FROM OUTSIDE PARLIAMENT(eliminate requirement for government to be democratically elected).
    BS, like TA, seemingly has no problem with his mate JR(and cronies) publicly calling for the overthrow of a central tenet of representational democracy. If the current LOTO does have a problem with the IPA idea of unelected cronies filling the ministry, Mr Shorten certainly has not articulated his concerns.

  31. Kaye Lee

    71 Reject proposals for compulsory food and alcohol labelling

    “Embattled Assistant Health Minister Fiona Nash has failed to meet with major public health bodies central to her portfolio, despite taking significant decisions including the removal of a healthy food rating website.

    After more than six months in the job, Senator Nash has not met with health bodies including the Heart Foundation and Cancer Council – which represent the two most common causes of premature death and disability”

    Read more: http://www.smh.com.au/federal-politics/political-news/assistant-health-minister-fiona-nashs-failure-to-meet-with-public-health-bodies-labelled-strange-20140227-33m12.html#ixzz3GuJ5QCTy

    72 Privatise the CSIRO

    What happens to CSIRO when the federal government decides to strip away A$111 million over four years from its A$733 million annual contribution to the organisation’s budget? We are beginning to find out.

    CSIRO, which has already suffered many budget cutbacks over the years, is reportedly set to make a series of cuts to its environmental programs, closing eight sites and reducing funding to key research areas including geothermal energy, liquid fuels, carbon capture and storage, and climate change.

    At the same time, funding for CSIRO’s research on coal seam gas is likely to increase.

    http://theconversation.com/csiro-risks-backing-the-wrong-horse-as-it-reacts-to-budget-cuts-27275

    The CSIRO will cut the number of infectious disease researchers at its Australian Animal Health Laboratory in Geelong, the country’s only facility capable of working with live samples of some of the most deadly diseases, including Ebola and MERS.

    http://www.smh.com.au/technology/sci-tech/csiro-cuts-researchers-at-high-containment-laboratory-20140814-1043l5.html

    74 Close the Office for Youth

    The Australian Youth Affairs Coalition has been officially de-funded following the release of the Federal Budget.

    AYAC Chairperson Craig Comrie said that through the release of the Federal Budget Papers and the $3.5 million (57 per cent) reduction in the Federal Youth Engagement budget and the $13.2 million reduction in Department of Education Grant Programs, the organisation had been told officially that their funding agreement would not be extended by the Department of Education.

    “While this has come as no surprise, it is nonetheless disappointing that the Federal Government is not willing or able to provide financial backing for the work of the national peak body for youth affairs,” Comrie said. “Now, more than ever, we need a strong voice for young Australians and the sector that supports them – with significant reductions in funding for youth programs such as Youth Connections and increases in welfare restrictions for young people up to 30 years, including six months without any benefits before they are eligible for Work for the Dole.

    – See more at: http://www.probonoaustralia.com.au/news/2014/05/australian-youth-affairs-coalition-defunded#sthash.wdk4z5vG.dpuf

    And for an example of sheer nastiness for the sake of it……

    73 Defund Harmony Day

  32. Billy muddle moir

    Mars do you find the rabbott, greens or pup as the progressives deserving of your vote these days?
    It seems to me that when the rabbott became opposition leader and he hit the TV with anti Julia the greens saw a chance to grow and dreamt of replacing labor. Do you consider that a realistic proposition?
    Surely the rabbott will not give up power, his skill at manipulating the media will be well backed up with last minute pink batts, union corruption and if desperate a sex innuendo.
    If that is accompanied by a senate win whackothediddlio the cigars and cognac will be in every old boy’s club. Still little billy can point to the polls and bleat ‘see people are realising how bad the rabbott is’ ‘that is the result of me working very hard at not doing much!’

  33. mars08

    @Billy muddle moir…

    I’m fairly sure that “the greens saw a chance to grow” when Abbott became opposition leader. His campaign of relentless negativity, MSM support and Labor’s internal squabbles prompted the ALP into taking the “small target” strategy.

    The easiest way for the greens to “grow” was simply by taking (and holding) the ground that Labor abandoned as it retreated.

  34. trishcorry

    Thanks Scott.

  35. trishcorry

    For those who are saying The Greens are the same as Gough….Gough was a visionary. Can someone please tell me the visionary policies the Greens have? Not incremental changes to existing visions from others. Original progressive vision? Say…like the NDIS.

  36. mars08

    I don’t think anyone is contending that the Greens are the same as Gough… but neither is the ALP of 2014… by a big margin.

  37. Roswell

    I love what a friend told me he read on Facebook – which I don’t remember word for word and as I’m not on Facebook I can’t look it up or know where to look if I could – but it went something like this: No matter what you think of Tony Abbott, he shares the distinction with Gough Whitlam as being the only prime ministers to drag Australia into the 20th century.

    Love it.

    One dragged us forward. The other one backwards.

  38. trishcorry

    @Mars08 – You don’t see the NDIS and Gonski as visionary reforms? The ALP are in opposition at present in 2014.

  39. corvus boreus

    Proposal 101; Instigate national ‘Cacophony Day’, a yearly public celebration of ignorance, bigotry, irrationality and loud shit sounds.

  40. mars08

    trishcorry…. if you are satisfied with the policies and values of today’s ALP… good! Embrace it. Own it. They are certainly not in the same class as Abbott’s thugs, fools and cretins.

    No doubt the number crunchers and pollsters in the Labor party have studied the electorate, and decided that veering to the right will be a fruitful move for the party.

    Some of us who disagree with Labor’s nastier policies will continue to look elsewhere. The ALP is showing no signs of pandering to the more progressive voters.

    Don’t fret about it, trishcorry. I seriously believe that the ALP will have a strong showing at the next federal election. They will be the party of choice for the older, socially conservative, nationalist voter who feels they’ve been betrayed by Abbott. And there are a huge number of disappointed ALP voters who simply cannot stomach voting for the Greens. Those votes, by default, will go to Labor.

    Personal anecdote… yesterday I was talking politics with a colleague… a real blokey bloke. Middle-aged family man… high school education. He wasn’t happy with Shorten’s timid performance and Labor’s reluctance to support “the workers”. The also hates the way Australia ALWAYS follows the Americans. But… and you’ll like this… but he says he’ll never vote for the Greens because their leader is a woman, they’re soft on Muslims and they want to close all the good fishing spots.

    There are many like him, and the ALP has their votes in the bag. Progressive policies scare them.They have nowhere else to go (except maybe for PUP). Enjoy, trishcorry. Enjoy.

  41. corvus boreus

    Current articulated federal policy includes support of foreign military deployments without the consultation of parliament, support of the off-shore mandatory detention of asylum seekers, and the opposition of carbon pricing and any investigation into corruption in federal politics.
    As these major policies stand in direct dissonance to some of my core beliefs, I am highly unlikely to cast a vote in favor of Labor in the shape it currently holds under John Roskams’ best man.

  42. mars08

    corvus boreus:

    Current articulated federal policy includes support of…

    …arbitrary detention and uncorroborated restrictions on freedom of movement and association.

    That’s certainly “visionary”. Not something I would have imagined 20 years ago…

  43. stephentardrew

    Oh don’t you just love it when expediency is the new moral mantra. Well I am sorry I grew up with a different set of values that said you do not isolate, impoverish, starve, torture and exclude human beings from justice just because they arrive on boats.

    Shorten is a slimy Machiavellian, knife wielding numbers man with the best interests of the Party at hand and the worst interest of ordinary members.

    You my friend do not warrant my vote, or attention, when you undermine the foundational values of Labor, justice, equity and utility. You fawn over neo-conservative clap trap while people’s lives turn to crap. You knifed someone who’s shoes you could not begin to walk in even though she has also compromised Labor values.

    You are a danger to the party and its constituents. Immoral is immoral and a coat of many colours cannot hide your deceit from progressives.

    Be Warned Laborites progressives are not the fawning fools you think them to be.

    We are better than the other lot does not cut it until you present truly reformist justice based polices.

    Pragmatism is the defense of amoral scoundrels.

    You are an insult to the memory of Gough.

    There go and cry the truth into your factional coffee cups.

    Damn! I got shit on my liver this fine day.

  44. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    @stephentardrew Ditto.

    @BillShorten, get the message! Advocate reformist policies.

    I do not want a paler version of Abbott’s LNP Neanderthals. If Shorten can’t stand for a visionary, just and progressive Australia, then he should get out of the way and let a current trailblazer in the position, who can forge alliances with the Greens and other progressive parties and independents.

  45. Dissenter

    Hear hear stephentardrew.
    These are my thoughts. I am hard left in my beliefs and can see that Greens policy fits my belief system but I am worried about the future for Australia is all like me desert Labor.
    Right now I am almost desolated by the shortcomings and lack ofs and it is not just SHorten. It is everyone who argues Disunity is death and who sits in place in parliament for Labor anywhere in Australia whether federally or state and has not taken drastic action to stop the bastards or to prevent Labor being pushed to the right and that includes SPEAKING OUT and SPEAKING UP and using MEDIA BETTER and ensuring that YOUR INDIVIDUAL beliefs as LABOR MP are articulated.
    LABOR MPS who are not doing this are betraying the voters who elected them.
    THey can’t have it both ways.
    As LABOR IS POLISHED AND PUSHED TOWARDS the more conservative voters it is inevitable they will LOSE THEIR LEFT WING VOTERS and as they DO they will not only become LESS BUT MORE LCD.
    LEFT wing voters by and the large are the educated and the empowered to ensure LABOR grows. left wing members are LABORS foundation.

  46. mars08

    stephentardrew:

    …You are a danger to the party and its constituents. Immoral is immoral and a coat of many colours cannot hide your deceit from progressives… We are better than the other lot does not cut it until you present truly reformist justice based polices…

    The lesser of two weasels??

  47. DanDark

    Dissenter beautifully put, you took the words right out of my mouth, Labor needs to shift or get shunted right out the way, they are becoming more irrelevant every day I don’t even read the emails from Bill and co anymore because the labor party are limp as a lettuce leaf to their once voters the working class, and irrelevant to my day to day survival in the future, they are no diff to the LNP as far as I am concerned now, and I doubt they can even swing back to the middle let a lone the left..

  48. Dissenter

    Dan We have to fight and it is more than commenting. I think now is the time to bombard them in a letter campaign reminding them of Gough’s legacy and how they are failing him and us by not standing up and reclaiming LABOR from those right wing thieves.
    THey have no right to have stolen the leadership using dishonest numbers by conspiracy and no right to F up the 1/2 Senate election in WA so that the right wing maintained the numbers in caucus.
    I support unionism and the right to be a unionist and understand their role in Labor and the foundations of the party but NOW THEY HAVE E A membership as well it should be respected.
    IT was nothing but a conspired power grab of the most dishonest kind.
    WE have to FIGHT TO TAKE LABOR BACK.
    Labor needs to go BACK in time to the GOUGH transformations to REMEMBER who they were and PRESERVE what was done and GO BACK to GILLARD/RUDD and REMEMBER AND PRESERVE what was established and undertaken and ONCE THEY HAVE REMEMBERED the GAINS the reinvigoration process can again BEGIN.
    BUT it cannot be UNDER THE THUMB of the right wing BECAUSE THEY REPRESENT THE FAILURES and the LOSSES.
    While they prevail LABOR IS LOST.
    LOOK at the numbers of LABOR NOW federally and in the states! IT IS WEAK.
    WHO out LABOR in that position? Murdoch and the msm but ALSO the right wing powerbrokers BECAUSE THEIR MANAGEMENT CONCEPTS AND METHODOLOGY is Fundamentally FLAWED and that last word is the nice way of describing it.
    They have ENACTED 2 VERY LARGE and DISGRACEFUL failures already and they have embedded failiure by refusing the accept that the LEFT are the powerbase of membership and now they are ESTRANGING THEM!

  49. DanDark

    Dissenter, Yep oky I agree but have become frustrated with the inertia of labor and voters
    I feel like my kids and I are in a speeding car with a maniac driver who is heading for the cliff and we can’t jump out, I have lost faith in the political system ,well actually I lost faith in it when killer Kennet got into power in Victoria all them years ago, I couldn’t believe people would vote for such an arsehole and he wrecked Vic, just wrecked it the best way he could, Toxic Tones is worse than killer Kennet I fear though..

  50. Dissenter

    Good CARTOON on IA from one of the papers with a very large pair of shoes. A ladder is on the side of the heel and a voice is coming from inside commenting about the fit. Of course it is Shorten and he is not even visible
    This is the Shifting of opinion/ watershed moment and we can make it a reality with those letters. Same to all MPs so you only need to write it once and the addresses are on the parliament site. Email is free. Cheers.
    It is now or never.
    If it takes until next year that is too close to the next election and too late for voters to get used to the leadership of a new leader.Cheers M8

  51. corvus boreus

    Dissenter,
    As for this one, each time Shortens’ office spams this computer, I reply “ICAC”.
    P.s. When sending letters to the offices of public officials, I would recommend restaint from indulgance in capitalisation. 😉

  52. corvus boreus

    P.p.s, meant “I would recommend rest(r)aint from over-indulg(e)nce in (gratuitous) capitalisation.
    I consider employment of an acronym(ICAC![!!!]) or imperative emphasis(FIRE![!!!]) a mitigating clause. 😉 🙂

  53. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    Dissenter,

    I am happy to do as you request, but I am having trouble locating the cartoon. Please help.

  54. Dissenter

    @ Jennifer Meyer-Smith, The cartoon has been posted on the story ANU stands firm…. on Independent Australia ( another online independent site). Cheers M8

  55. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    Thanks Dissenter.

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