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Hats off to Queensland

On Saturday night, we witnessed another spectacular crash by One Nation Party in the Queensland state election, following their less than inspiring performance in the WA state election earlier this year.

It seems the more attention the media give them, the worse they do.

During the lead up to both these elections, the mainstream media salivated over the possibility that ON could hold the balance of power, casting them as kingmakers, placing the fear of a missed opportunity clearly in the sights of the major conservative parties.

The Liberal government in WA chose unwisely as it turned out, to preference One Nation ahead of Labor. Ignoring that unhappy experience, the Queensland LNP similarly, decided they too would favour ON with their preferences in key seats.

Political opportunism at its worst.

One would have thought they might have taken note of the WA result and shown some backbone. Then again, backbone is not something that comes to mind when trying to second-guess the Liberal and National parties.

The mainstream media, not surprisingly, seemed oblivious to One Nation’s WA experience and went ballistic with their predictions of how ON would hold the balance of power in Queensland and win more than a dozen seats, ridding Queensland of their nemesis, that awful Labor government.

Ably assisted by a blatantly biassed media, the One Nation juggernaut stormed along in the battler bus, concentrating on particular sections of the Queensland community whose voice, it was said, was not being heard.

So, on Election Day last Saturday, everyone from Hobart to Darwin held their collective breath expecting to see a result that would bring great uncertainty to the sunshine state. Were Queenslanders going to send themselves down the road to chaos?

Not quite. Despite the media hype, the electorate chose a different path. They returned the incumbent Labor government and rejected the One Nation juggernaut restricting it to 14% of the primary vote. Moreover, they punished the conservative LNP for not showing sufficient backbone to stand up to ON.

One Nation’s support base is strongest in QLD and WA. It has some support in NSW, but in Victoria, Tasmania and South Australia, it is a non-event and treated more as an amusing distraction.

Opportunistic politics has never caught hold in the broader Australian psyche. It will, however, always attract those who have been left behind, those who have an axe to grind, those who want to hit back.

The marginalised and the deprived, will always look for ways to punish the major parties whose interest in them is as shallow as their pathetic displays of sincerity. They will always be fodder for the one-issue candidate, the voice that preys on the disaffected.

This is the legacy of the neo-liberal era. It has seen the wealth of the nation transferred from the majority to an ever-shrinking minority. Neo-liberalism has created the super-rich to the detriment of the majority and seen the emergence of a sub-class that toils continually, that contributes to the wealth, but never gets to enjoy its rewards. Little wonder they are so anti-immigration.

One Nation plays to this sub-class and will always have its support unless we address the root cause of their dissatisfaction. If we allow the sub-class to get bigger and bigger, we will indeed bring chaos to our system of government.

Far better that we stop it now, by ensuring full employment, just wages, adequate universal health care, free education, cutting edge communications and equality of opportunity. The alternative is to continue seeing the weak, the marginalised and less educated excluded from their rightful share.

If anyone still wonders why people like Pauline Hanson find a niche market in politics, it is the selfishness and greed of the majority, the not caring, which leads to the deprivation and inequality of the minority.

And it’s not peculiar to Australia, either. It’s called neo-liberalism.


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  1. Max Gross

    PHON is not a political party it is a business franchise!

  2. Terry2

    Another failure for News Corp in Queensland with their relentless attacks on Labor being rejected by the electorate once again.

    The Courier Mail is the statewide Murdoch tabloid in Queensland and apart from The Australian also a Murdoch publication, is the only statewide newspaper. Its screeching headline on Saturday morning to Palaszczuk was :

    You don’t deserve to be re-elected

    But, just as their uncritical support for the previous Newman government failed to grab electoral support so this campaign failed to gain traction.

    isn’t it time that News Corp stuck to their knitting and just reported the news rather than trying to be king makers for the conservative right ?

  3. wam

    Perhaps the people are not as dumb as was thought and 86% rejected the loonie right them and 92% rejected the loonie left?

    Perhaps they are not so affected by short term political memory and campbell newman’s arrogance is still there?

    Pauline speaks as she sees it is the comment on my facebook and the support trump and the rabbott or the same reason.

    None fit the your profile of a sub-class but they are all left bell curvewise, think the ABC is left(whatever that means it is animal farm baad), watch Sunrise and Today and read rupert..

    They all read headlines, that are disingenuous with anti-labor headlines and pro-labor stories but don’t read political articles, especially those in rupert’s rags

  4. Matters Not

    Re the comment:

    seems the more attention the media give them, the worse they do.

    Indeed! That’s why I’ve been arguing that a PHON representative ought to be on every ABC channel every morning and every night and frequently during the day. The Drum and Q&A are two examples where the PHON should have permanent spots. Keep giving them the rope. They will do the rest.

    Be interesting to see Hanson’s declaration re citizenship status.

  5. Freethinker

    I just wander what this result means to Adani.
    I am looking with interest what Annastacia is going to do.
    Interesting times ahead.

  6. Eumundi Grandmother

    We can thank Malcolm Turnbull for the DD Election which allowed PHON back into the system !!!

  7. paul walter

    The barren, myopic LNP/ ON alliance believed its own bullshit as to its self-emanating assessment of just how vile human nature is in all others, by its own standards and paid the price. The average Queenslander repudiated the offensive implicit slander by choosing the lesser of two evils through endorsement Labor and the Greens, choosing to remain this side of the fine line that demarks sobriety and rationality from intemperance and delusion

  8. guest

    The Murdoch press is lamenting the success of the Labor/Green/progressive/union/Getup alliance – but seems to fail to see the failure of the LNP/PHON/regressive/ business/IPA alliance. And the rebuff to Turnbull cannot be ignored, despite Murdoch claims.

    As for Adani, the Labor veto of the rail-line loan seems to have gained approval, especially for the Greens, perhaps to such an extent that even if Adani gains finance from China, the mine could still fail as the real economic situation emerges. But who knows?

  9. paul walter

    Guest, nothing changes with them. If it was anyone else they would choked on their own mean-spiritedness generations ago.

    Murdoch is the Ralph Nickleby of his age.

  10. Harquebus

    full employment = more destruction
    For what purpose other than to purchase stuff they don’t need must everyone have a job?
    In my opinion, to support the selfishness and greed of a not caring minority.

  11. jimhaz

    Sadly, I see an estimated 400,000 votes as a win for One Nation regardless of having 5 times the number of candidates from 2015.

  12. Kronomex

    Harquebus, what’s with the nonsensical opinions? Put some actual thought into the points you are trying to make. Please don’t use your usual links to sites replies, show us that you can put your thoughts into comprehensible words and sentences. Use any links as an adjunct to what you want to say not as the main thrust of your “argument”. Surprise us .

  13. Zathras

    Pauline speaks as she see it?

    A privileged white Christian woman in a predominantly white Christian society thinks she is under some sort of personal threat and is trying to convince other white Christians they are as well?

    Either that or an angry and bitter woman with obvious racist and bigoted tendencies and a hunger for public attention sees an opportunity to make some easy taxpayer money from the fears and prejudices of others.

    I’m waiting for the day she has something positive or constructive to talk about that isn’t part of her narrowly targetted agenda or stops attacking anybody who dares criticise or investigate the shady dealings of her party.

    Congratulations Queensland.

  14. Jack Straw

    Totally agree with Harquebus’s comments above.

    And the destruction is happening very rapidly.

  15. Freethinker

    Yes Harquebus, greed and selfishness rule.

  16. diannaart

    @Jack Straw

    What Kronomex said to Harquebus – with additional evidence.

    Yes, I am aware we are destroying the precarious balance of earth’s eco-system – but continually whining, “We’ll all be rooned”, is just an excuse to do nothing.

  17. Keith

    Newman created the political horror show when Premier, it is not surprising that Labor won again.
    It is somewhat of a relief that Labor won from my point of view; except, the way the ALP has handled Adani has been abysmal.

    Quote from a book review about sea level rise:

    ”Elected officials may be busy arguing about whether global warming is real. But most scientists are having other arguments entirely – about whether danger is imminent or a few decades off; about whether our prospects are dire or merely grim.”

    Before COP23 science was suggesting that major efforts need to be taken to ward off worse catastrophic climate change events; letter signed by 15,000 scientists, commentary from IMF, Climate Science Special Report, and commentary from UN.
    Since COP23 Eric Haulthaus has written about the breakdown of glaciers and ice sheets on Greenland and Antarctica, well explained in short film:

    Jennifer Francis has researched the Arctic and jet streams, also not good news:

    As temperature goes up ponds begin to release more methane:

    Record low levels of sea ice in the Arctic, disruptive to Inuit way of life, and will have impact elsewhere:

    Then, there is the recently released major study of the Arctic:

    Federally the LNP appear more concerned about looking good in relation to energy supply; they clearly couldn’t give a toss about the welfare of people generally. Labor Federally is somewhat better; politicians from other parties might make the right noises; but, they will not be the decision makers.

  18. Jack Straw

    diannaart.. He may surprise you and walk down Martin Place naked with a Placard stating; “We’ll all be rooned”,

  19. diannaart


    “Surprised” is not the word I’d use…

  20. Freethinker

    I do not know what is Harquebus life style ( minimalist? simple life?) so I would going to say that he is whining and not do nothing it will be and assumption.
    IMHO, he is entitled to have passion against consumerism in the same manner that other fellow blogger have passion against the extreme right, neoliberalism, etc.
    Perhaps, also, I am in many of the fellow bloggers a whinger for my passion against neoliberalism, consumerism, greed etc, but I do my bit, I do not vote for any of the 2 big parties and live a simple and austere life.

  21. Michael Taylor

    I agree with the last smidgen of Harq’s comment, but not the bulk of it.

    Some people need a job so they can keep their children fed, lift themselves out of poverty, to be able to pay for that elective surgery they couldn’t until then afford etc etc. Such things, for some people, are out of reach without the income a job provides.

    I’d say that’s rather important, wouldn’t you?

  22. Jack Straw

    Michael; you have broken your own rules again.Who; are we all talking about again but little harqyboy.All we need is Miriam and we are off!

    Much to Harqs delight.

  23. Michael Taylor

    Jack, just following your lead.

  24. nurses1968

    It would be a brave Party that would write of PHON especially with a Federal election maybe sooner than later.
    Federal Labor have already decided on a continuous campaign in Regional Queensland,
    PHONs vote while not gaining any seats {maybe 1} isn’t all to be sneezed at

    PHON contested 61 seats got 319,751 votes at an average of 5,242 votes per seat

    Greens contested 93 seats got 226,195 votes at an average of 2,432 votes per seat

    at current count*
    75.1% counted

  25. Michael Taylor

    That’s the worry, isn’t it nurses? They still managed to receive a lot of votes. I’m thankful that they didn’t get the seats, though.

  26. Freethinker

    In the next federal election we need members like Tony Windsor in the senate to stop any influence by the ON party or Bernardi’s team.
    As it is now is a worry.

  27. diannaart

    PHON have enmeshed themselves tightly within the political mess of Australian politics – many thanks to the MSM. Therefore, all the more reason to present their would be supporters with viable alternatives – should not be that hard to make PHON irrelevant even to the marginalised.

  28. Harquebus

    The bulk of this article is about the QLD election so, I will not be backing up my previous comment.

    Michael Taylor
    Why must we all have jobs for us all to enjoy the things that you mention? They would be much more available if we weren’t wasting precious resources on stadiums, new infrastructure and the like.
    We have to come up with something else. Jus’ think about it and perhaps we will discuss it another time.

  29. Michael Taylor

    Nurses, I’ve been thinking about those numbers.

    PHON did receive a lot of votes but the data I saw somewhere told us that they took those votes off the conservatives. If they hadn’t, the conservatives may well have won the election.

    Brace yourself: the federal government will want those voters back, and to entice them back the LNP will have to move further to the right. Dark days ahead.

    Harquebus, I agree entirely. And John Kelly made that point precisely.

  30. Christian Marx

    Mainstream media are nothing but shills for the ultra rich. In the modern age of online news
    and the proliferation of grassroots, citizen journalism, their lies are exposed. Mainstream
    media is dying a rapid death, and even in Queensland, their propaganda has clearly failed.

  31. Kronomex


    “We have to come up with something else. Jus’ think about it and perhaps we will discuss it another time.” No time like present. Put together an article and post it in Your Say and then we can read what your ideas are. Telling us to “think about it” without providing a baseline on what to think about is a cop out and shows a paucity of thought. Actually, your whole reply is a cop out.

  32. Jack Straw

    Good One Michael. Yeah; it’s all my fault.

  33. Michael Taylor

    Whatever, Jack. If you say so.

  34. Harquebus

    Michael Taylor
    The problem is, to have them with high unemployment or shared work or something like that. High unemployment is going to happen and if it needs a job to access those things you mention then, I am one of many who is going to miss out. Better to plan ahead now rather than deal with the coming employment crisis and subsequent fallout when it happens.

    I have already done that and guess what? Hardly any agree with me so, now I am waiting to see what alternatives others are suggesting. Nothing other than MMT and renewable energy which, I ain’t going into even if Miriam English adds her two bobs worth.

    Back to the QLD election; a rare good segment on theDRUM last week discussed the lack of commentary on their debt and deficit. As I keep saying, it does not matter who is elected to govern nor at what level, saddled with the incumbent economic mindset of perpetual growth, they can only continue to fail. The election of a major party, any major party is, in my opinion, not something to rejoice.

  35. Harry

    Harquebus: not all growth is unsustainable. Granted we need less “stuff”, we have more than we need, we need less stuff that does not last, etc etc. We DO need more public services and less mindless capitalism which only increases waste of finite resources, mainly ecological resources.

    Whether such a shift to more public “goods” can be brought about before a lot more environmental degradation occurs is debatable. Things will probably have to get a lot worse before people wake that our current high consumption trajectory will end badly.

    A shift to more “social” sustainable employment is needed and more equitable sharing of the finite resources of this planet.

  36. Terry2

    We need very careful analysis of everything Ms Hanson says and promises.

    For instance, her commitment to eliminating GST from electricity prices In Queensland (?) was never questioned by the media yet was mentioned to me by several people as being an excellent idea.

    The fact that GST is a federal tax and not a state tax means that if the GST were to be eliminated it would have to be on a national basis and she would have to get that agreed by the coalition government : it ain’t going to happen.

    We are going through a period when quality investigative and questioning journalism is a scarce commodity and yet we need it more than ever before. The ABC needs to be adequately funded as, with a few exceptions, we cannot believe at face value what we are being told by the likes of News Corp.

  37. jim

    Queenlands Labor effortlessly crosses the 2017 Election line ,close to a landslide u can bet thats what the MSM would be pumping out around the Nation if LNP won ,the people have spoken I’m so happy to be alive Malcome Turnbull grinned while turning his back on Tony Abbott and many others.

    I bet the Right wing journalists don’t have a clue as this Labor Victory wasn’t suppose to happen so now they have to scrap all the LNP win , speeches in the dust bin.ROLF

  38. nurses1968

    well, I don’t know where that reply went?

  39. diannaart

    The re-election of Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk in Saturday’s nail-biting poll will guarantee the medium-term future of the solar industry in Australia, along with several large-scale wind and hybrid projects, and some key storage installations
    It will also likely have a bearing on federal politics too, given that the Queensland government is unlikely to approve a National Energy Guarantee that seeks to choke the level of wind and solar that can be added to the national grid, or reinforces the power of the energy incumbents….

    …. The result, along with a stronger showing from The Greens, appears a repudiation of coal-first policies of the LNP and One Nation, which voters seemed to understand would result in higher prices as well as being disastrous for the environment.

    Palaszczuk’s re-election means 50 per cent renewable energy target by 2030 will remain in place, and the 400MW renewable energy and storage auction, which attracted more than 100 different proposals, is now certain to go ahead.

    and finally…

    Queensland was the first of four states that will go to the polls in the next 12 months and three of them – Queensland, South Australia and Victoria – have ambitious renewable energy policies that, in the absence of any federal initiative, are critical to the future of renewables in Australia.

    Victoria has legislated a 40 per cent renewable energy target by 2025, and is holding a 650MW renewable energy auction, while South Australia, which goes to the polls in March, is already at 50 per cent but aiming to go higher.

    One down. Two to go.

    Queensland chooses sunshine over coal, to relief of solar industry

    The nonsense of “clean coal” is beginning to be seen for what it is. The very real truth of renewables improving exponentially and costs to consumers reducing is finally shining a light (so to speak) on a sustainable future.

  40. nurses1968

    Michael Taylor
    I think your thoughts may be right
    All I was doing was pointing out that all over the place people have “PHON is dead”, PHON,no comeback from here” ” PHON finished” when nothing could be further from fact.

    This core 320,000 and rising who drink in the Malcolm Roberts “wisdom” or the “genius” of Pauline sink off back to the Right if PHON weren’t around and will Malcolm chase that?

    Labor need to get to the Regions and try to educate or convert, not appease.

    PHON have established themselves as the 3rd force in Qld politics and to just hope they go away would be a disaster
    If you need any convincing, the real percentages PHON managed

    Antony Green‏Verified account @AntonyGreenABC

    At #qldvotes One Nation polled 13.7%, 9.7 in south-east and 21.4 in rest of state. Looking only at seats One Nation contested, the party polled 20.7%, 18.4% in south-east 23.1% in rest of state.

    diannaart % the Greens can only dream of 😀

  41. wam

    The loonies are not unaware that their 10% is cold hard cash for little corporate cost. If maiwar goes labor expect the greens here to lament their failure to steal a seat from labor but they are working on libs preferences

  42. nurses1968


    The Greens attack campaign was 95% aimed at Labor,
    One Greens spokesperson/candidate was so cocky she had a list of claims, on the eve of the election either LNP/PHON or Labor had to meet to get Green support.
    Annastacia had already laid it out, No deals PHON or Greens
    The cocky Greens spokesperson however was hedging her bets as she had corflutes PHON coloured and proclaiming Independent candidate for South Brisbane.

  43. Matters Not

    Yes The Greens compete with the ALP for votes. How is that a surprise? In terms of the (theoretical) ideological spectrum, (hopefully) they overlap. If not – then which political party has ceased to be progressive?

    Seems to me that the best way to look at society as a whole (including political organisations – broadly defined) is through what sociologists call a conflict model.

  44. Matters Not

    Further, if you have ever been closely associated with Labor politics as it is actually carried out on a day to day basis, you would understand that the prevailing common sense is that your real, and current, enemies sit behind you and not across the political aisle.

  45. Freethinker

    Matters Not November 27, 2017 at 10:50 pm
    Yes The Greens compete with the ALP for votes. How is that a surprise? In terms of the (theoretical) ideological spectrum, (hopefully) they overlap. If not – then which political party has ceased to be progressive?
    Thank you Matters Not, at last someone come with a logic comment about that.
    What people expect, that the Greens be in a coalition with the conservatives?
    Which party is not longer progressive? The ALP, no questions about that and soon or later the left and the ACTU will be separated from it if their ideology is above the personal interest of the members.
    I am convinced that if Sally McManus becomes a too important political figure the ALP right faction will do their best to bring her to the party in one of the seats and them work hard to make her irrelevant.

  46. nurses1968

    “What people expect, that the Greens be in a coalition with the conservatives?”
    Bob Brown considered going into coalition with Tony Abbott,
    Di Natale said “never say never” to a Greens LNP coalition
    Di Natale only days ago outlined his plan or 25 seats and a coalition with either Labor or Liberals
    The spokesperson for QLD Greens had a list of claims, on the eve of the election either LNP/PHON or Labor had to meet to get Green support.
    Now they have put Lee Rhiannon on an unwinnable number 2 on the Senate ticket,
    Who knows?

  47. John Kelly

    I feel sure that if the Greens ever joined a conservative Coalition their support base would collapse.

  48. Freethinker

    Nurses1968, The ALP has voted more times with the Coalition in many laws than the Greens.
    In macroeconomics the ALP is closer to the Coalition than the Greens.
    Not to mention in human rights where the gap between the Greens and the ALP is wider.

    John, I cannot see how the Greens will be in a coalition with the conservative political sector when their policies in environment and human rights it is complete opposite.

  49. Freethinker

    I like to add something after a very quick research to dispute nurses comment.
    The Greens vote against the Coalition 94% of the time compared to the ALP 40% that agree with the Coalition.
    Nothing surprise me, after all both parties have neoliberal policies.
    I prefer the Greens above any of those two but having said that the Greens (when I have the choice) coming second behind any socialist candidate.

  50. diannaart


    Your comments above summarises much of my approach to voting, although I did make an exception last federal election by placing Labor first in the lower house.

    Despite the opportunities an inept and spineless PM has handed Labor throughout his term the major, so-called left, party has done little on environment/renewables and absolutely nothing when Turnbull dismissed out-of-hand the Uluru papers and zero on the appalling treatment of refugees – too frightened they will lose votes from the regressive side of politics.

    I believe the equal marriage vote reveals there are more progressives in Australia than myopic bigots and Labor could take a chance to actually provide an alternative to the limited and fragmented LNP… and if wishes were fishes we’d all cast nets.

    Meanwhile both major parties claim bewilderment at the loss of support of a significant portion of the electorate. It’s not rocket surgery.

  51. Freethinker

    diannaart, I have come across many ALP members and voters with left views that if they stay in the party because it is the only way that they can making changes and meanwhile it appears to me that are happy to be under the moderate right faction.
    Thery belive that voting for the Greens or any micro party is a waste of vote.
    Until those progressive people do not stop dreaming the ALP will continuing to be the same, depending in the traditional voters and members.
    I was witness of the same political behavior OS and got to a stage that the left members (or the ones with progressive ideas) of both parties left their comfortable political seats and formed a Broad Front.
    Interesting that now the same thing happens in Chile.
    Will happen in Australia? no yet we need more financial suffering by the middle classes.

  52. Harquebus

    When the nation’s super funds disappear then, we will see what the middle class is made of. Mush I reckon. Non thinking and non caring, they have had it too easy for too long. Those already on struggle street will have the head start.

  53. diannaart

    Will Australia create an viable alternative political party, its own Broad Front? Maybe.

    Maybe we will learn to operate with a pluralist parliament.

    I tend to think it will be the latter.

  54. nurses1968

    I wasn;t talking about who voted on what,
    I was talking about the willingness of the Greens to consider entering into a Coalition with the LNP, which the’ have considered numerous times
    The Labor Party aren’t out to meet the wishes of some here. The Labor Party has a broad cross section.young,old. Left. Right, Centrist those that don’t buy into the faction thing at all. and decisions are made by a split of votes by Unions,the membership and executive.
    I think some should chill, and just consider the reality of what an Opposition can do.
    It’s all well and good to sprout things when yo know you never have to deliver, and some Parties need to adopt the words “Try to” instead of “Will”
    The Greens in Northcote, Lidia’s corflutes said she WOULD ban pokies in all Vic pubs, cap rent increases to CPI, and provide uncrowded public transport.
    She hasn’t yet but only been there a while so I’ll keep checking back on that.
    Maybe before Xmas?

  55. Freethinker

    Nurses how the party voted and for what it is what matters not the gossip in the media. Facts is what count and the ALP have show it by voting in the parliament with the Coalition.
    We know that the party is not to meet the wishes of the people like is the Coalition and for that reason they are loosing votes.
    The ALP has a broad cross section controlled by few that know that the others do not move because”the only way to making changes is be in”
    That it is the reality.painful, yes because we do not have a good alternative we just have one better than the other, that it is all.

  56. nurses1968

    The wonderful thing about a democracy, or as close are we are to one,is if you don’t like them. don’t vote for them .
    It wouldn’t matter Labor did. some would never be happy
    Remember not long ago I mentioned those who oppose Labor policies, and Labor haters ?

  57. Freethinker

    Yes I remember and I would not use the word haters, it is not appropriate IMO in sites like this where people are well informed about politics and current affairs, but it is your call.

  58. nurses1968

    “not the gossip in the media”
    are you insinuating the possibility of Greens forming coalitions with LNP is Media gossip?

  59. helvityni

    Australia does not like changing things; other countries charge by, move on with the times: only the two major parties matter here…

    Why don’t Labor and the Greens join forces, a winning combo. Only Gillard seemed to be able to do it…ah, we need more sensible female leaders…
    Also do not please support dimwits, like Pauline,she should stop popping up….I don’t mean girls like her, but more like Kristina Keneally…

  60. nurses1968

    “Why don’t Labor and the Greens join forces”
    That isn’t going to happen.
    Maybe the odd Local Government or Territory electionwhere they can’t do much harm , but State or Federal , NO
    Most Labor Leaders, the lastest Annastacia have ruled that out and following the Greens campaign,almost totally directed at Labor the vibe I’m getting from Labor members is “never again”
    Most learnt years ago, some are latecomers

    Labor belatedly regrets its pact with the Greens

    by national correspondent

    News Weekly, July 21, 2012

    It has taken the Labor Party almost 22 months to come to the realisation that its pact of convenience with the Greens was a catastrophic mistake.

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