When culture war games trend lethal

The right-wing ecosphere throws an idiot ball into the civic discourse with…

The year ahead

Most people turn away from politics over the holiday period when the…

Cutting Your Power Bills In Half And Other…

A few years ago there was a scam where people were promised…

Values Based Capitalism: The Imperative of Defining Commitment…

By Denis Bright Editorial insiders at The Weekend Australian (28-29 January 2023)…

A walk in the forest

Bayerischer Wald can be just as hard to get to than it…

An Emergent Premier Chris Minns - Uniting Sydney…

By Denis Bright After more than a decade in Opposition, NSW Labor is…

Forget Australia Day And Celebrate: Rum Rebellion Day…

After pointing out for a number of years that January 26th isn't…

Whither Constitutional Change?

Within a very short space of time, we are going to be…

«
»
Facebook

Our own House of Cards

By Andreas Bimba

House of Reps.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The table above of the House of Representatives vote for the current federal election shows how the smaller parties and independents are grossly unrepresented. The table needs to be updated to reflect the latest results, but nevertheless shows the situation clearly.

Malcolm Turnbull is not the legitimate Prime Minister as his Liberal and National Party coalition are usurpers of power and are illegitimate. For the Governor General to recognise the authority of this government is to accept a serious corruption of our political system.

If we had a proportional representation voting system for the House of Representatives, the Greens would have 15 lower house seats, rather than 1, NXT would have 3 rather than 1, other small parties and independents would have 16 seats rather than 3 while the corrupt duopoly would each have about 10 to 20 less seats.

About 58% of us didn’t vote for either the Liberals or Nationals as their first choice for the House of Representatives and those 58% should be out on the streets protesting and shutting down the functions of government.

If we had a proportional representation voting system for the House of Representatives, like for most countries in Europe and also for the lower house of the Tasmanian Parliament (they use the Hare Clark system); we would either now have a Labor – Greens government or a Labor – Micro’s and Independents government and Bill Shorten would be the Prime Minister.

PR_types

You can read more about proportional representation voting in this Wikipedia article.

Our seat-based system for the lower houses of our Parliaments is fundamentally undemocratic as the voting intent of up to 50% of voters minus 1 vote (if a seat is won by the smallest margin) is discarded for each seat and not considered further. Small parties that have a dispersed voting base are thereby grossly unrepresented in Parliament due to this deficiency.

That is not the end of the story. Because the duopoly of the LNP Coalition or the ALP receive large donations from corporations, that always come with strings, they are able to greatly outspend the smaller parties and independents during campaigning and can saturate the mass media with advertisements as well as have an overwhelming presence on bill boards and at polling booths. These parties can also afford professional advertising companies, marketing researchers and consultants and can undertake other election campaign activities such as polling, telephone marketing and deliver party brochures and Party focused postal vote forms and so forth by commercial means rather than just by using volunteers.

Now let us have a look at our commercial mass media. The vast bulk, especially the Murdoch press displays blatant and heavy bias towards the Coalition especially during election campaigns but also on an ongoing basis. The reality of the wider world is filtered and re-framed in accordance with a political and economic agenda of the media proprietor and this is so effective that for a large portion, possibly even most, of the Australian population their world view is far from where it would otherwise be if they had instead been exposed to a balanced and relevant mass media.

Apart from the natural attraction of conservatism, especially for the older demographic and habit and tradition, how else can you explain most of the vote for the Liberal and National Parties after the appalling Abbott and Turnbull-labelled-Abbott Government?

Current appalling examples of the commercial mass media re-framing reality are the obsession with the debt of the Federal Government and the false logic that balanced Federal Government budgets, or even worse surpluses, are beneficial when the reality is that they are inherently contractionary to the economy. Another example is the false narrative that unemployment is unavoidable when in fact it can be near to zero if the Federal Government ran ongoing deficits of 3 to 5% of GDP just as both the ALP and Coalition did in the post war period up to the mid 1970’s. Other examples were the lies about the proposed mining tax and the carbon tax during the previous Labor Government and more recently the lies and media beat up about the CFA dispute in Victoria.

The commercial mass media is shared amongst very few proprietors and nearly all follow the same destructive neo-liberal agenda that holds our country back, entrenches wealth inequity and poverty, prevents the serious problems such as global warming, habitat destruction, poor infrastructure and excessive gambling for example from being addressed.

The commercial mass media by omission or by framing the public mindset or by fostering a feeling of powerlessness in the public, also enabled gross crony capitalism to become entrenched in our country, for example chronic tax avoidance by businesses, corporations and the affluent, low royalty payments from the Mining and Energy sector, massive subsidies for the Mining and Energy sector, massive fees for super fund managers (currently $25 billion p.a.), massive mortgage repayment windfalls for the major banks (currently ~$40 billion p.a.) due to the real estate price bubble, and the generous tax concessions such as super contributions, negative gearing and CGT concessions that enable the most wealthy to take advantage of what has become an ‘inverted’ progressive tax system where they now have the opportunity to pay a lower percentage of tax on their income than low paid workers.

The government-owned mass media also tries to present a balance between the Coalition and the ALP but has almost forgotten that about one quarter of Australians do not vote for the duopoly and very little media exposure is provided of that alternative, apart from ample negative stereotypes and a big surprise after the election about ‘what the cat dragged in’. For example, I would be surprised if more than 1% of the Australian population saw the Greens campaign launch on the 26 June 2016 or even a summary of it in the news.

Some links on the Hare Clark voting system:

Hare-Clark Explained

Tasmania’s Hare-Clark Electoral System

And New Zealand’s Mixed Member Proportional – MMP voting system:

MMP Voting System

Canada’s truth in the media laws:

A Law Against Lying on the News

Regulators Reject Proposal That Would Bring Fox-Style News to Canada

 

 880 total views,  2 views today

130 comments

Login here Register here
  1. jim

    Good post surely someone could look into this as meself I don’t trust the AEC count as it is anyway.

  2. Steve Laing - makeourvoiceheard.com

    An excellent article Andreas. As you say, the major parties are unlikely to change a system that is clearly in their favour, even though Labor in particular has so many other disadvantages that it will always struggle to form governments compared to the Coalition. But apparently they would rather be in charge occasionally, and let us suffer Coalition governments regularly, than change a system that might actually give them a more regular voice at the table.

    The recent backbiting by ALP supporters against the Greens, and the lack of any credible MSM coverage of the latter reinforces this.

    Moreover many people are frightened of voting for independents because they have been told ad infinitum that this will be a “wasted vote”. This is, in part, because whilst they may have different political leanings, I believe that many true independents actually have a lot in common (i.e. primarily working toward the common good, rather than primarily to the views of an organisation that “selected” them). It’s a “charter” that I’m drafting just now for discussion, which I hope might help give all independents a collective credibility and thus better focus those who do not wish to vote primarily for the outdated (and highly corruptible) system that the major parties propagate.

  3. cornlegend

    Why not introduce optional preferential?
    The Greens would have to support that, as they did in Senate changes
    Initially it would disadvantage some parties but in time hopefully they would learn.
    Proportional representational would produce skewed effects leaving under and over representation across the the Nation.
    The Green voter base is predominantly inner city, high density residential based.
    Outside these this the Greens vote is around or below 2%
    Proportional representation would leave regional and country voters to the mercy of the city slickers.

  4. Florence nee Fedup

    Optional preferential is little better than first past the post. Not a fair system.

    Maybe multi MP electorates.

  5. Neil of Sydney

    that unemployment is unavoidable when in fact it can be near to zero if the Federal Government ran ongoing deficits of 3 to 5% of GDP just as both the ALP and Coalition did in the post war period up to the mid 1970’s

    I have seen that statement before.It is one of the new stories floating around.

    If Menzies ran budget deficits which appears to be true how come net govt debt in 1972 was zero?

  6. cornlegend

    Florence nee Fedup
    “Optional preferential is little better than first past the post. Not a fair system”
    Why isn’t it fair?
    Voters get to vote for who and how many they prefer.
    Some I know vote informal because the refuse to number Liberal or National Party, even at last.
    Some may choose to vote one on the ticket, others all
    Seems fair to me

  7. diannaart

    Excellent article, Andreas.

    Agree, Stephen Laing.

    Why does Labor think it can achieve anything without the support of other progressives? (and it does not HAVE to be a formal coalition like the LNP).

    We know the LNP stands for global corporation and the ridiculously wealthy along with the odd bedfellow of fundamentalist Christianity.

    But what does Labor really stand for? It cannot appease the corporate gods at the same time as providing the framework for an equitable Australia. The uber wealthy can afford a small piece of pie, the rest of us cannot.

    Labor has 3 years in which to convince it is a party for progression rather than stultification.

  8. cornlegend

    diannaart

    “Labor has 3 years in which to convince it is a party for progression rather than stultification.”

    OR?

    “other progressives?”
    what do they need do?

  9. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    Hear, hear everybody speaking up for proportional representation. We have 3 years to make it happen.

    All voices in the community according to their numbers would get a proportionate say in policy making and implementation.

    Negotiations between representative parties would be even more essential as representatives would be more equally numbered.

    It would also be more reason for Labor to remember its socialist roots and to try to build bridges with other proper progressive parties.

  10. cornlegend

    Jennifer Meyer-Smith
    Why don’t you support Optional preferential?
    You pushed the Greens cause for a form of it in the Senate
    From experience, it seems Greens would support it.
    When OP was in QLD, 2009 , 42.8% of Greens voters allowed the vote to exhaust after 1

  11. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    I want proportional (and progressive) representation because I don’t want the major parties to dominate government. I want more accountability to every section of the community regardless of their financial backing and exposure in MSM.

    There would be more voter engagement if people actually believed their voices were heard regardless of where they live.

    This will be the opportunity, cornlegend, for Labor to come to its senses – finally – and form an effective Alliance with the Greens since you now seem to think they might be useful. 😛

  12. cornlegend

    Jennifer Meyer-Smith
    “Greens since you now seem to think they might be useful.”
    wash your mouth out.
    USEFUL?
    Bloody hell Jennifer I reckon they are about as useful as tits on a bull
    Jennifer, I pointed out 42.8% of Greens exhausted their vote , there was more to that, as I responded to Doug Evans pointing out the Greens anti ALP voting preferences . “In 2009, based on preference flows for the final excluded Green candidate in 71 electorates, Green preferences flowed 39.4% to Labor, 17.8% to the LNP and 42.8% exhausted.
    So 60% were either exhausted or went to LNP

  13. cornlegend

    Jennifer Meyer Smith
    People like to have local members, in their electorate
    Don’t get me started about “opportunity candidates”

  14. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    Which people like that, cornlegend? Perhaps you mean the ones who are more closely aligned to the specific political agendas of the candidates in the current system.

    That does not help the other 55-65% who aren’t.

  15. Pete

    I stopped reading at the second par. Shades of Abbott.

  16. cornlegend

    Pete
    I reread it, I can see your point

  17. cornlegend

    Jennifer,
    “Which people like that, cornlegend?”
    No, ordinary people who like to have a local member, an Office or 2 in their Electorate, a face they can complain to and tackle personal issues. complaints etc
    Don’t you listen to the ruckus every time an outsider candidate is parachuted in to a seat?

  18. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    Yes cornlegend,

    but for many ordinary people, we don’t have the luxury of living where our local candidate regularly is one who represents our political views.

    It’s hard for marginal people in any non-marginal seat.

    Proportional government would turn that on its head.

  19. cornlegend

    “Proportional government would turn that on its head.”
    rubbish ! They’d all be city dwellers . want some examples?
    how would that miracle occur

    ps one more gone to Labor, Anne Aly claims victory in seat of Cowan

  20. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    Yes, I do.

    ___________________________

    Congratulations to Anne Aly on behalf of ALL anti LNP voters everywhere.

  21. Don A Kelly

    The government deficit ought to be higher – a budget deficit allows for a private sector surplus and injects demand into the economy. It does not burden future generations. The idea that it does is a myth.I don’t know how the present government debt compares with the Rudd / Gillard years but, at the end of the second world war the Australian Government had EIGHT times more debt than it was during the Rudd / Gillard years. People that grew up in the 50’s and early 60’s did not notice it. Nobody was burdened by this enormous government debt and we had full employment. The general consensus among Modern Monetary Economists is that the deficit should be pursuing a function. When we talk about fiscal sustainability we want governments to run good deficits and not bad deficits. A bad deficit is one that has risen because unemployment has risen and tax revenue has fallen and the government has done nothing about it. A good deficit is one where the government spends sufficient amount to fill the spending gap that is created from our savings and imports. The deficit is functionally related to objectives that we care about, i.e. full employment. The governments austerity measures undermines growth in the economy, destroys employment and destroys their tax revenue. It’s a mindless pursuit.
    The deficit will go down when the private sector is spending, along with high employment and they’ll go up when there’s high unemployment. That’s the reality.

  22. Neil of Sydney

    is the false narrative that unemployment is unavoidable when in fact it can be near to zero if the Federal Government ran ongoing deficits of 3 to 5% of GDP just as both the ALP and Coalition did in the post war period up to the mid 1970’s

    The other false thing about this statement is that hawke/keating ran deficit budgets and had high unemployment peaking at 11% when keating won the 1993 election. And Howard/Costello ran surplus budgets and unemployment went from 8% to 4%.

    And if Menzies ran deficit budget which appears to be the new lefty talking point how come net debt in 1972 was zero?

  23. wam

    well neil’s mob had a plan for a new progressive economy with jobs. The nats out polled the loonies, as usual, and billy scored a few extra labor pollies through hard slog by his rank and file and a vow to thwart the plans of suss on medicare..
    Even better are the kiwi lovers who maintain their disingenuous approach to a country the size of sydney with a system designed to ensure representation of the NZ aboriginal(note the lower case, lord?) population, the Maori (note the upper case) who have a treaty with the invaders.
    Few Australians support a treaty and fewer would support such positive action for Australian Aborigines?
    ps neil ming ran deficits and was profligate for most of his reign and wasted, like howard, boom times the former chasing commos and the latter unionists.

  24. cornlegend

    Jennifer Meyer-Smith
    Last one for the night
    Under your system we would end up with a congregation of politicians, representitive of the party, holed up in Canberra of an inner city centralised party room, and to hell with the locals.
    I want a politician who knows my regional problems and issues unique to that area,I want contact with a politician who is elected by the local people to address our particular needs and work on the betterment of the nation.
    I dont want a Green in Melbourne telling me what is good for Whitlam or Gilmore
    This is how the Courier Mail, and the voters of QLD reacted to “remote representation”
    “THE Queensland Greens will contest the state election campaign with no leader — and plan to run stooge candidates in some seats.”
    ““The Queensland Campaign Committee is seeking reliable members to be opportunity candidates, that is candidates in electorates where there is no branch, or the branch has been unable to find a candidate,’’ he wrote.”
    The Greens are standing by their choice of candidates for the Queensland election despite several of them contesting seats hundreds, or even thousands, of kilometres from where they live.
    Lliving in Brisbane and running in Mt Isa
    However, seven of the party’s “opportunity candidates” live far from the seats they’re standing in such as Warrego’s Sandra Bayley, who hails from Premier Campbell Newman’s Brisbane suburb of Ashgrove.
    Mt Isa candidate Marcus Foth is a professor at Queensland University of Technology’s creative industries faculty in the heart of Brisbane, more than 1800km from the outback city.

    HE Greens are running candidates in electorates up to 2000km from where they live with at least one admitting they haven’t even visited the area for at least a year.

    Greens candidate for Warrego Sandra Bayley, who lives at Ashgrove – 475km from the centre of the seat she is contesting – has not been to the area since 2013.

    She is just one of seven “opportunity” candidates put up by the party to run for the rural areas.

    Seats at Mount Isa, Warrego, Callide, Bundaberg, Hervey Bay and Mirani and Burnett have candidates who live hundreds of kilometres from their electorates.

    Despite championing grassroots campaigning,

    Then, add to that, a couple of the Greens Senators, who it seems never want to stay home and that doesn’t offer “grassroots representation”
    Sarah Hanson Young gets the travel bug, charter flights, family holidays ,travel and a taxpayer to fund the bill of almost ONE MILLION DOLLARS for her first term in the Senate
    Peter Whish whatever his name did better racking up $500.000 in travel in 6 months, yep, HALF A MILLION DOLLARS

    So, I want a local .

    And you wonder why Queenslanders don’t have much time for the Greens, after getting treated like mugs

  25. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    Thanks Don.

    A much appreciated explanation. The more, the better of MMT explanation for Australia’s benefit.

    ___________________________________________

    Neil,

    kindly stop trying to hijack the discussion away from the power of MMT economics, which even Hawke and Keating didn’t appreciate but especially not Howard and Costello, or Malcolm Muck and Snotty.

  26. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    cornlegend,

    did your last one for the night have to be soooo lonnnnng!

  27. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    wam,

    I support a treaty for First Australians. Why not?

  28. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    cornlegend,

    #2, everything you accuse the Greens of, Labor can be accused of too.

    However, keep your hair on coz I blame the Liberal (National lapdog) Degenerates for the same parachuting and/or lack of diverse representation.

    Look at McMillan and Indi (Mirabella) for ‘great’ examples of where I’ve lived and never felt represented!

  29. Bighead1883

    Jennifer Meyer-Smith July 11, 2016 at 8:36 pm

    Utter poppycock,as usual

  30. cornlegend

    #2, everything you accuse the Greens of, Labor can be accused of too.

    Examples ?
    “McMillan and Indi (Mirabella)” but they had electoral offices and staff you could contact in your electorate,
    Not live in Brissie and imagine the needs of MT Isa , as Greens proposed

  31. Neil of Sydney

    ps neil ming ran deficits and was profligate for most of his reign and wasted, like howard, boom times

    Under Menzies and Howard/Costello anybody who wanted a job could get one. If Menzies ran deficits how come govt debt was zero in 1972? Someone please tell me.

    And when you say Howard and boom times i guess you are talking about the mining boom. This boom started in 2004 well after Howard was elected but exploded from 2008-2013. The biggest mining boom and best terms of trade in Australian history happened under Rudd/Gillard from 2008-2013 and Labor wasted the lot.

    http://www.rba.gov.au/chart-pack/commodity-prices.html

  32. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    Bighead,

    is that your attempt at keeping me quiet?

    Be careful, or I’ll think you support everything I say!

    ___________________________________________________________

    Neil of Sydney,

    just accept that MMT is everybody’s answer to socio-economic fairness and optimum economic activity.

    Why argue against it? Is it because you want an unfair advantage over the vast majority of Australians?

    If that is your thinking, do you think anybody on this site (besides Bighead) would want to talk to you?

  33. Sam

    Hope you got the brochures Neil?

  34. Michael Taylor

    So once again Neil drops in to derail a thread with his same old bullshit. Please, everybody, he really isn’t worth responding to. He’s been doing this for ten years on any site he haunts.

  35. cornlegend

    Jennifer Meyer-SmithJuly 11, 2016 at 8:31 pm

    cornlegend,

    did your last one for the night have to be soooo lonnnnng!

    You wanted facts Jennifer, not my problem if you can’t handle it, and the Greens just give so much ammunition.
    Should I expect a response or are you in denial ?

  36. Neil of Sydney

    So once again Neil drops in to derail a thread with his same old bullshit.

    Derail a thread? I am talking about this statement by the author

    Another example is the false narrative that unemployment is unavoidable when in fact it can be near to zero if the Federal Government ran ongoing deficits of 3 to 5% of GDP just as both the ALP and Coalition did in the post war period up to the mid 1970’s

    if menzies ran deficit budgets how come debt was zero in 1972?

    This appears to be the new lefty talking point that menzies ran deficit budgets.

  37. Steve Laing - makeourvoiceheard.com

    Yes he does. If you actually knew anything about mining you’d know that we are currently IN the mining boom. What Neil is referring to is the mining CONSTRUCTION boom, which is completely different from the current production phase when they pull the shit out the ground and sell it overseas. The problem is that we have moved from undersupply to oversupply hence the price per tonne has deteriorated significantly. The good old free-market (that Twiggy Forrest wanted to undermine) is exactly the problem that we are currently facing. Neil – its very easy to be in surplus if you sell off all the assets. Unfortunately when you no longer have such assets, you can’t accrue the revenue that such assets produce. The problem is those assets belong to the people, but were sold cheap and the people who have most benefitted are those whose votes were purchased. Machiavelli would have been proud, but if you look closer at history you’ll see those city states eventually came to naught.

  38. Zorro

    Neil is a Zealot:

  39. Bacchus

    So once again Neil drops in to derail a thread with his same old bullshit.

    You will notice that this particular line of inanity has pretty well been ignored by everyone Michael – there’s nothing there that serves as a ‘hook’ to educate other readers… 😉

  40. Matters Not

    I now ‘know’ nothing. I now ‘say’ nothing.

    My recent efforts to ‘disregard’ and not ‘respond’ attracted assertions of advocating ‘censorship’.

    And so it goes. ? ? ?

    NoS wins again, and again and ag ..

  41. Shogan

    Out of interest, what would the tally be if you only counted first preferences?

  42. cornlegend

    Shogan
    Interesting you should ask,
    A friend is going through that, and at present only looked at 30 seats in no particular order {only 120 to go}
    So far on his figures it would be
    LNP 17
    ALP 10
    Greens 3

  43. Kaye Lee

    76-67 Anne Aly is in

    Last two seats – ALP in front in both

    Cathy O’Toole in front by 178 in Herbert
    Steve Georganas ahead by 583 in Hindmarsh

  44. paulwalter

    Georganas has gone against the usual trend, actually increasing his lead on postals. It is a good Lazarus type comeback. I fear Cathy O’Toole may still be run down, but Anne Aly at Cowan is such a key seat, for so many reasons including the importance of preselecting strong candidates, not drones and because Anne Aly represents the most logical refutation yet of the Right’s írrational anti Islamophobia’, apparent in the smear campaign run against her during the campaign. It is a promising move toward something more rational, if only by her presence as an educated, intelligent and well-presented woman, but with a bonus likely in the development of more adult people movement policies.

  45. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    Hear, hear about Anne Aly’s success.

  46. paulwalter

    I think she is an understated finger of accusation pointing directly at the Duttons, Hansons and Bernardis. The election of Anne Aly would make a very significant symbolic point, perhaps THE one of the election, as to a national change in mentality

    Enough of the Tea Party misanthropes, with their gut hate and reactive nonsenses!!

  47. Andreas Bimba

    I forgot to mention in the article ‘pork barrelling’. Another dirty trick used by the duopoly to increase their vote, especially in the vitally important swinging seats.

    Here’s $50bn-ish worth of submersible pork barrels:
    http://www.theaustralian.com.au/business/opinion/adam-creighton/rubbery-figures-for-50bnish-worth-of-submersible-pork-barrels/news-story/f1889307a6c3c33875054d959bae7a01

    Truck loads of pork here:
    http://www.abc.net.au/news/2016-06-17/cassidy-pork-barrelling-and-the-hoax-of-'every-vote-counts'/7519082

    For a response to many of the comments, I shall return.

  48. Neil of Sydney

    Another example is the false narrative that unemployment is unavoidable when in fact it can be near to zero if the Federal Government ran ongoing deficits of 3 to 5% of GDP just as both the ALP and Coalition did in the post war period up to the mid 1970’s

    Another point to be made by this statement by the author is that it disagrees with recent history. Hawke/Keating ran deficit budgets and unemployment was high for 13 years of that govt. Conversely Howard/Costello ran surplus budgets and unemployment went from 8% to 4%.

    Still would like to know if Australian govts ran deficits budgets from WW2 to 1972 how come govt debt in 1972 was approx zero?

  49. jimhaz

    [Another example is the false narrative that unemployment is unavoidable when in fact it can be near to zero]

    a) the jobs need to be productive jobs not government support jobs.
    b) there still has to be a market. No use pumping money into job creation if it becomes unsustainable once the stimulus is withdrawn.

  50. Sam

    A Price for Misogyny.
    Steve Price is as ugly on the inside as he is on the outside. He has a thin skin and has a chip on shoulder.

    Price will never get it because he doesn’t listen and he never has; this fact he stated on his own show on 3AW many years ago. Price stated that at school his teacher said “Steven doesn’t listen and he is too concerned with what other students are doing in classes.’ Or words to this effect.

    Price has always been a narrow minded bully with short attention span. He’s a joke as Political commentator; especially on The Project. So good on Van Badham for calling out this sexist “one of the boys” Neanderthal comments on Q & A last night.

  51. Dan Rowden

    Just for the record, and to introduce a modicum of temperance – you can’t “derail” a thread by addressing something the author of an article has said. If an author chooses to make disparate points in their piece, then the expectation of a complex comment thread is an entirely reasonable one.

    Neil did not derail this thread one iota. He’s certainly tedious and repetitive, but I recall something about people in glass houses…

    The worst thing you can do for some itches is to scratch them. Pass the Calamine.

  52. diannaart

    @cornlegend

    OR

    We can expect another term of neo-con rule, after 2019.

    “other progressives” (you added) can continue to cooperate and collaborate, however without a truly progressive Labor party they are unlikely to counter this swing towards the far right, a swing which began with Howard and has not shown any signs of returning to a more moderate political zeitgeist.

    Labor cannot win at continuing to be LNP-lite.

  53. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    100% spot on, diannaart.

  54. Kaye Lee

    “if Australian govts ran deficits budgets from WW2 to 1972 how come govt debt in 1972 was approx zero?”

    Because running deficits and investing in the right things grows the economy. Which is the whole point. Why does Gina Rinehart borrow money to fund her business ventures? Because she can invest it in something that brings a greater return than the cost of financing the loan.

    Migration helped too.

  55. diannaart

    @Jennifer

    1/ I am patiently waiting for the day when Cornlegend states he believes the Greens are a worse pox than the LNP.

    2/ Am also waiting for Bighead to offer comment filled with facts, even something a little positive.

    No prizes for guessing which option I expect first.

    Also, seeing as I mentioned the word “positive” above, how great that, in spite of a corrupted MSM and a neutered ABC, Anne Aly won. A Labor representative – how did she do it? Not just rise above all the exterior challenges, but the in-house ones as well.

  56. Michael Taylor

    It worked the same when I was in the finance industry, Kaye. Businesses were using someone else’s money (the finance company’s) and holding on their own. It was a simple case of getting someone else’s money to work for you.

  57. Michael Taylor

    I don’t remember throwing any stones. ?

  58. Dan Rowden

    As it turns out, and in actual fact, the policy framework Labor took to this election was as progressive a set of ideas as we’ve seen from Labor in yonks. How do we sensibly translate that to the election result? Clearly, something else is going on. Clearly, “progressive politics” isn’t the current cultural compulsion some of you think – or fantasise – it to be. To analyse this result effectively and objectively we’re going to have to set aside our own pet ideas of how we’d like things to be and instead consider things as they really are.

    One thing I’ll say most fervently at this juncture is that anti-Lib/Lab duopoly sentiment has seriously backfired on the Left, because, it seems, in their vanity they imagined only they were thinking this way.

    Why haven’t the Greens been able to breakthrough their 10% plateau if this shift to the “far right” is so obviously odious to so many people?

    Lots of matters to be considered.

  59. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    I concur entirely, diannaart. 😉

    … and yes a good result with regards to Anne Aly. Maybe she’ll be a voice of reason and for building alliances with their friends in the Greens and progressive micro parties.

    Blow out the dinosaur cobwebs!

  60. Dan Rowden

    Michael,

    I don’t remember throwing any stones.

    Relax, you’re in luck; you don’t post enough to be a stone thrower.

  61. Kaye Lee

    “after WW2 the debt to GDP ratio reduced in the 1950s but it was not because the government paid off debt. The level of debt kept growing steadily, but the national income grew even faster, so the debt to GDP ratio declined although the level of debt rose. The rising level of debt was mostly put to good use being invested in productive purposes, mainly infrastructure to support the rapidly growing population, driven by the post-war ‘baby boom’ and the aggressive ‘populate or perish’ immigration program.”

    http://cuffelinks.com.au/australias-government-debt-position-lazy-balance-sheet/

  62. Michael Taylor

    Dan, good comment. I actually think it’s starting to resonate with the electorate.

  63. Dan Rowden

    Also, seeing as I mentioned the word “positive” above, how great that, in spite of a corrupted MSM and a neutered ABC, Anne Aly won. A Labor representative – how did she do it? Not just rise above all the exterior challenges, but the in-house ones as well.

    It was a nice win, and she’s a strong candidate, but a highly Labor-friendly redistribution is always a handy thing.

  64. diannaart

    @Dan Rowden

    Why haven’t the Greens been able to breakthrough their 10% plateau if this shift to the “far right” is so obviously odious to so many people?

    Good question.

    The answer is for much the same reasons that Labor, despite its most progressive sounding raft of policies in years, did not manage to oust a coalition that blithely offers nothing to anyone with an average to low income.

    * I emphasised the word ‘sounding’ for the reason that these policies did not go far enough in redressing the cuts and burns administered to our vital public infrastructure over decades.

  65. diannaart

    @Dan Rowden

    but a highly Labor-friendly redistribution is always a handy thing.

    Which proves Labor can do the right thing if they try.

  66. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    Dan Rowden,

    I don’t think the anti dinosaur duopoly rhetoric has backfired on the left, as you argue.

    I think it has highlighted a growing sense in the community that the either/or’s no longer suffice as political representatives because they are tarred too much with the same brush.

    Admittedly, Labor is better than the LNP Degenerates, but being better is not good enough. We need brave, progressive, inclusive, democratic socialists to lead the way forward and Labor is too beholden to its corporate and union bosses or frightened of losing favour with the comfortable middle class and bogan elements.

    Much to a handful of MISguided critics’ annoyance, I have been constantly advocating the wisdom of an Alliance between the Greens, Labor, true Progressive micro parties and sane Independents because I see that not one of any of these parties are sufficient on their own to represent the wide demographics of Australians.

    True, the Greens need to break through the barriers but so do Labor who has seriously dissatisfied many disgruntled voters and run the risk of doing so more as more people become further aware of the harmful stranglehold on Australia’s throat, neoliberalism has had with the blessing of the LNP Degenerates and to its shame, Labor too.

  67. Kaye Lee

    I think if employment prospects were better then the swing to far right parties would be less. People may also be more amenable to considering the environment if they could find a job in something other than mining coal. The attempt to silence environmental advocacy groups is insidious – it would give the fossil fuel industry a very loud well-funded unchallenged voice. I find it amazing that Queenslanders are willing to risk the employment and income generated by the Reef in favour of so comparatively few jobs in mining a commodity whose demand is in decline.

  68. diannaart

    Kaye Lee

    How to convince that a monopolised market causes fewer jobs rather than more? How to convince more competitive small businesses support a thriving economy than the big boys actually want to achieve?

  69. Dan Rowden

    diannarrt,

    * I emphasised the word ‘sounding’ for the reason that these policies did not go far enough in redressing the cuts and burns administered to our vital public infrastructure over decades.

    Ok, but I respectfully submit that this cynicism, if I can call it that, is why the LNP has been returned. I mean, Labor offered a whole spectrum of positive policies that differentiated it from the Coalition and and you still had/have to talk it down and minimise that difference in that sort of Greens “all or nothing” way. Sigh.

  70. diannaart

    @Dan Rowden

    I am not a member of the Greens or any other political party.

    I voted for Labor in the HoR.

    Labor has not given any indication of how such policies redress the damage done – which needs to be of much concern if Labor wishes to distance itself from the LNP.

    The LNP was returned due (in part) to the MSM – which hounds Labor as much as it does the Greens and also, that final bastion of factual reporting, the ABC, has finally been successfully infected:

    Decades Of Conservative Pressure On The ABC Are Paying Off

    The 2016 election has revealed just how compliant Australia’s media landscape has become. In some cases, it’s hardly a surprise. But the failure of the ABC to challenge narratives run by the Coalition is of serious concern, writes Sean Hosking.

    Labor is in denial blaming the Greens and the LNP continue to blame everyone except themselves for any cock-up.

    Please continue with your assumptions Dan, if that is all you can do instead actually discussing how we can remedy the continued swing to the far right.

  71. Florence nee Fedup

    Cornlegend, first past post can only be fair in two horse race. otherwise you will find MP being elected with 20-30% population, even lower. How is that fair.

  72. Florence nee Fedup

    Why many only see government spending as debt is beyond me. it is spending for future growth, building essential infrastructure, physical and human for future prosperity. Grows the economy. Austerity only leads to smaller economies.

    No difference if money spent on jobs private or public sector. All create new infrastructure. All wages spent in the economy. All stimulate the economy.

  73. cornlegend

    Diannaart,
    “I am patiently waiting for the day”

    Even you wouldn’t have enough patience 😀

    sorry for the slow response but I had stuff to do {Labor stuff :-D}
    Where do I start, hell would freeze over before my vote assisted the LNP in ANY way but with the Greens, let me tell you the pond is nearly frozen and with me they are on a 98% rating of meeting the same position as the LNP.
    Thanksfully under the Greens Senate changes I was able to leave both LNP and Greens out of contention.
    Now, this may be a bit “looong” a response for Jennifer Meyer-Smith to absorb as she likes one liners, but I think the Greens have reached their zenith.
    Way back in 90-91 I worked for a few days on the campaign in the Swan Electorate where Dee Margetts the Green informed me they would”wipe Labor out within a decade”
    2002,Michael Organ the Green who ran just up the road from me {won but the voters quickly woke up and dumped him} told me much the same
    I get “Labor members are abandoning the ALP ” when in fact, under Bill Shorten’s leadership, the party’s rank and file has grown by more than 10,000 members.
    I accept the Greens are a political party out to win seats just like any other party and that is their right.
    It is also my right to oppose a party trying to take votes from Labor, whoever they be.
    Under the Leadership of Di Natale you get the distinct impression he sees the ALP as his enemies in the present, to near future.
    At the Greens election night celebrations? the reports were “Richard Di Natale hails ‘big swings’ to Greens in Australian federal election” WHERE, worst Senate since 2004
    And the intention to “fight the ALP in key seats in 2019”

    Throw in the Party election launch and where did they hold it? Malcolms electorate, Tonys ?
    Nup, Albos in Grayndler. Sort of makes it clear who they were fighting eh?
    And to devote a third of the NSW State campaign budget on unseating Albo and Tanya sort of gave the feeling they were fighting ALP than LNP wouldn’t you think?
    I don’t like Di Natale.
    As a lifelong unionist I believe in a living wage, Di Natale exploited 3 Au Pairs, paid them $150 a week |less than Newstart} and promised to front up with the documentation.
    He did’t
    Could explain why the Greens failed to make submission on penalty rates to FWC
    I’m sick of Greens telling me the members couldn’t elect their choice ,Albo as leader.
    The same Greens who bring on leadership change with even their lone MP getting 1 hours notice
    {Notice Ludlam went M.I.A. since?}
    And ther are pages more, but Jennifer could never have the concentration to get even this far .
    As for ALP leadership, I didn’t support Bill and was vocal at the time, but we have kissed and made up :-}
    I think Shorten has grown into the Leadership role, healed divisions and put forward a decent platform to continue building upon.

    Di Natale? a dead loss
    And the Greens position on the pile hasn’t changed much since Margetts in 1990 {9.9%] to now .
    An interesting read for you Dianaart

    “Without some serious soul searching, the Greens will never move beyond the 10% plateau”

    https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2016/jul/05/without-some-serious-soul-searching-the-greens-will-never-move-beyond-the-10-plateau?CMP=share_btn_tw

    I don’t even think soul searching would help them
    The “talk big while they don’t have to deliver” party

  74. cornlegend

    Florence nee Fedup
    It gives people the choice.
    Vote 1 if you like, preference if you like
    You do not force people to vote for a party they despise, whether 3rd or 10th

  75. diannaart

    Hmmm soul-searching & self-reflection.

    Maybe Labor could join the Greens in a little introspection. Seems to me, neither are having much of an effect in slowing the lurch to the right.

    Just an observation, of course; another is both the LNP and Labor need to breathe deeply upon the scent of 2 party anachronism.

  76. guest

    Neil of Sydney,

    an article which deals with Menzies’ debt and deficit can be found at The Coversation, Aug 29, 2014, titled “Menzies, a failure by today’s rules, ran a budget to build a nation.”

    In it these points are made:

    “Menzies had been paying off wartime debt early in his term, but debt increased to 41% of GDP when Menzies retired.”

    “His biggest deficit of 3.3% of GDP in his final year of office was larger than the last Swan deficit, which the Abbott government called a “disaster” and a “budget crisis.”

    I hope that is of some help to you. Wikipedia is an interesting source of information.

    The mention of which reminds me how “Fact Checker” has been shut down on the ABC. And “The Drum” is no longer a forum on line for discussion of anything, let alone politics.

    Public discussion is not allowed to occur on a publicly paid facility. It is shameful censoring in the name of cost-cutting. Freedom of speech for some, but not for others. Competition for some, but not for others.

  77. Andreas Bimba

    @Steve Laing (4:49pm)
    Well done for developing a charter for the independents. Your comment “the major parties are unlikely to change a system that is clearly in their favour”. Yes but the people are sovereign, it is their views that count, not politicians nor parties. If the 25% of the electorate who did not vote for the duopoly want to pick a fight over this with the duopoly, guess who will win? There is a lot of anger in the community.

    @cornlegend (4:51pm)
    Proportional representation would largely remove the current substantial over-representation of the National Party and bring it to the same level as other parties and the independents. It is inherently fair to all. Regional voters do not deserve over representation nor does any other sub group.

    @Neil of Sydney (5:07pm)
    On federal government budget deficits and the debt. Have a look at the charts in the two links below:

    http://resources1.news.com.au/images/2014/05/09/1226912/404693-327c265a-d683-11e3-8f0f-96eb1c5166a3.jpg

    http://cuffelinks.com.au/federal-government-budgets-and-their-impact-on-the-stockmarket/

    This is proof of good old Keynesian deficit spending. A federal government deficit can stimulate the economy and actually increase economic activity and taxation revenue while reducing welfare and unemployment benefit expenditure so the federal debt actually reduces. In other words a deficit can result in a smaller debt over time as long as productive economic growth occurs. Look at the post WW2 boom period especially.

    Productive economic growth is in areas like education, health care, housing, infrastructure, factories, farms, mines, value adding, services and not just speculative growth in property or shares like the worst Prime Minister in Australia’s history John Winston Howard along with the worst Treasurer in Australia’s history Peter Costello set in train that curses us to the present day.

    More to follow.

  78. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    cornlegend x2,

    you’ll be pleased to know I ploughed through your long monologue and have survived the ordeal. Thanks for the mention TWICE even though you were addressing, diannaart!

    As a matter of interest, how do you compare Van Badham’s and Plibersek’s performances on Q and A last night. Who would you give the prize to for the grassroots fire in the belly?

    Maybe that’s what’s missing with many in the Labor ranks. Fire in the belly.

  79. cornlegend

    Jennifer
    good to see you ” survived the ordeal”
    facts hurt?

  80. cornlegend

    Andreas Bimba
    Every Party goes into an election with the same opportunity.
    If they can’t sell their message tough titties .
    What about optional preferential?
    You Greens seemed to like a form of it in the Senate , and when in QLD, Greens 42.8% took the opportunity to expire after 1, so they must like it?

  81. diannaart

    @Andreas Bimba

    Thank you for taking a dip into the choppy waters of the comments thread.

    🙂

  82. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    cornlegend,

    you didn’t answer my question. Too painful?

  83. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    Proportional representation is the way forward. The sooner you accept that fact, the easier it will be on you.

  84. jimhaz

    Green Parties in National Governments

    http://www.socio.ch/par/Poguntke.pdf

    Might be of interest to someone. Published in 2001 so might be a bit old now.

    I didn’t read it – but scanning through i did notice these two points:

    “Greens in government means Greens in coalition government”
    “The power of a party within a coalition largely depends on its capacity to blackmail its coalition partners”

  85. cornlegend

    Jennifer,
    “cornlegend,

    you didn’t answer my question. Too painful?’

    Didn’t watch it, wouldn’t know
    There is the answer, happy?

  86. guest

    Jennifer Meyer-Smith,

    Fire in the belly? Yes, a little bit only, please. Van was fun and deadly. But Michaelia Cash is not. Nor is Abbott in full flight – manic obsessive compulsive disorder.
    But Plibersek and Penny Wong – un-flustered, steady, quietly authoritative, considered, genuine. More of those please. But I have to confess Van and Tania were a brilliant combination on Q&A, especially with Van right in Price’s face.

  87. diannaart

    Cornie

    Still waiting for reply on LNP v Greens – which party do you disagree with the most, which party treads on all toes the most, which party more of a threat to Labor?

  88. cornlegend

    Andreas Bimba
    “the current substantial over-representation of the National Party”
    I’ve got no time for the National but credit where credit is due.
    They run in seats where they believe they can get enough punters to vote for them, target their base and use their resources pretty wisely.
    I think they ran in about 30 seats and to their credit got results of 62.01%. 54.77%, 68.56% 61.89,% 71.41%, 55.24%, 58.87%, 52.75%, 65.17%, 66.47% 2 party prefered so their strategy works pretty well, wouldn’t you think?
    Obviously, with those 2pp figures the voters in those electorates think so.
    Now the Greens use a scattergun approach, run candidates in about 150 seats, spend the bulk of their campaign finances on 5 or 6 seats, use “opportunity candidates” and you wonder why 90% of the voters won’t wear you.
    Outside metro areas the Greens average about 2% support.
    Maybe there is a lesson to be learned for the Greens from the Nats.

  89. diannaart

    Maybe there is a lesson to be learned for the Greens from the Nats.

    Suck up to Labor and stab from behind when circumstances are fortuitous?

  90. cornlegend

    diannaart
    BOTH,
    thats why I encouraged everyone to put them last and second last respectively.
    Actually, you got me there, Greens were 2nd last so I guess that answers you question
    In the Senate not a bother, neither got a look in

  91. cornlegend

    “diannaartJuly 12, 2016 at 5:22 pm

    Maybe there is a lesson to be learned for the Greens from the Nats.

    Suck up to Labor and stab from behind when circumstances are fortuitous?”

    No, learn what your electorate wants to vote for, and WIN

    The Greens just haven’t got it , sorry
    30 odd years and the 10%ers don’t learn

  92. diannaart

    @cornie

    Labor are patchy at best on the listening to the people/electorate thing as well. Given their years of experience they should be able to win an election against the LNP more than once a decade or two.

    A little more Labor a little less LNP would be good to see.

    But you’re in a knot about the Greens…

    hmmm… priorities….

  93. cornlegend

    No, just responding if you go back and check
    Bill did well, I’m very happy with Labors result
    Would have liked the LNP to win 1 less seat to make it interesting.
    They could be there till 2022

  94. Andreas Bimba

    @Jennifer (11 July 6:08pm, 6:27pm & 6:58pm)
    Legend. Definitely an interesting 3yrs, Malcolm Turnbull will be pushed and kicked from all sides, he likes doing important stuff and being the centre of attention. We will see.

    @Don A Kelly (11 July 7:40pm)
    Perfect summary of MMT. I knew of the power of Keynesian deficit spending since early adulthood but only after getting involved with the AIMN site did I learn of MMT. Some of the MMT terminology is counter intuitive for example that the Federal Government doesn’t need to tax in order to spend, but I and my Facebook friend Victor Bien looked into MMT quite deeply and it all holds together. In fact all other macroeconomic theories are totally deficient in comparison.

    @Neil of Sydney (11 July 7:54pm)
    I think you must realise that there is more going on in an economy than deficits and unemployment and often things are more complicated. The Hawke/Keating period followed a foolishly sharp cut in the deficits during the last few Fraser budgets and this would have constrained the economy and increased unemployment a few years down the track.

    I need to learn more about ‘Keating’s recession we had to have’ and find out if he did the right things or not.

    On Howard, the corresponding mining boom and huge increase in private debt stimulated economic activity and counteracted his reckless and moronic surpluses. He should have never have left his legal career.

  95. Andreas Bimba

    @Cornlegend (11 July 8:28pm)

    The Hare Clark proportional voting system does have local representatives. Seats are five times larger and each has five local members.

    Tasmania has five seats for the lower house of the Tasmanian parliament, each with five members. The same seat boundaries are used for federal elections but only one local rep is elected for each seat, for the federal House of Reps.

  96. Neil of Sydney

    On federal government budget deficits and the debt. Have a look at the charts in the two links below:

    So the chart shows we have been running mainly deficit budgets since Federation. Gross debt fell from ts peak during WW2 to much lower levels in 1970 but we were running deficit budgets. Makes no sense. I am suspicious of the “facts.” I can understand how a growing economy can shrink the relative size of the govt debt but it would have to be growing very quickly which i doubt. Inflation can do the same. You can inflate away a debt. But i guess i have to accept the charts but i am suspicious.

    On Howard, the corresponding mining boom and huge increase in private debt stimulated economic activity

    Can’t give Howard/Costello any credit can you. Has it ever crossed your mind that the good economic numbers under Howard were due to good Coalition policies? By the way the mining boom did not start until 2004. The biggest boom in history happened under Rudd/Gillard and they wasted the lot.

  97. Florence nee Fedup

    Neil, once again, deficits and debt don’t have the importance you give it, How many surpluses since Federation? Can nearly count the number on one hand. That includes the great depression and two world wars plus many other conflicts. More than one recession.

    Neil during that time Australia has continued to grow in every way in spite of deficits being the norm.

    What is worse, you keep spruiking about deficits, which you take out of context.

  98. Florence nee Fedup

    Neil, wasn’t true everyone could get a job under Menzies. Many of the jobs were low paid with poor conditions. We still had wharfies line up each morning, hoping to get back killing dangerous work for the day.

    Housing was impossible to obtain. Schools overcrowded.

    There were close elections. Health cost were high.

    Then there were the Menzies Horror, what I recall as stop go budgets.

    What is true, IMHO Menzies squandered the long post war boom which most other countries benefited from.

    Menzies might have served the longest term as PM but achieved very little in that time.

    He, like Howard and other Liberal PM won elections by fear campaign and a lot of luck.

    He all like Abbott, benefitted from a Labor Party that was split, tearing itself apart. The DLP sided with Menzies.

    We seen the economy sent into overdrive with the Korean war and record wool prices, where wool was a pound a pound. A pound in money for a pound in weight. Result was high inflation if my memory is correct. Was young at the time.

    Australia didn’t blossom until Whitlam came along.

  99. Matters Not

    Andreas Bimba July 12, 2016 at 4:01 pm

    The second of your links, I find particularly useful. Indeed, I ‘saved’ and also printed out the seven pages.

    There’s nothing like the ‘factual’ historical record re debts and deficits and the nonsense ‘meanings’ that are frequently given to same. Much appreciated.

    Note also NoS is ‘suspicious’ of the facts. What an endorsement.

  100. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    Thanks Florence,

    for your insights from a personal and historical perspective.

    I know about Whitlam and his wonderful legacy but can only go on with what I’m told about Menzies and his lack of impact.

  101. Neil of Sydney

    Whitlam was an economic disaster. If he was not thrown out he would have destroyed the country. However under menzies anybody who wanted a job could get one.

    Note also NoS is ‘suspicious’ of the facts. What an endorsement.

    Yes i am suspicious of the fact that we have been running deficit budgets since Federation and in 1970 net govt debt was zero. Could be true i guess. Why isn’t the same thing happening now? We are running deficits and debt is exploding. Our economy is growing.

    One difference could be that govt spending up to 1970 went mainly into productive infrastructure. Since then the welfare state has taken off. One of Whitlams legacies. Today we have DSP, pensions, unemployment benefits etc way above what used to be given. Plus years ago people used to retire at 65 and die at 68. Now they are living to 85 meaning years longer on the pension.

  102. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    Now listen Neil,

    I will tolerate you only so far and insulting Whitlam is beyond my tolerance. Menzies was the beneficiary of a booming time and did nothing with it except deprive the 99% of reasonable political representation.

    You need to just shut up and accept the wisdom of MMT, which has been inspired by the social inclusion legacy of the Whitlam era.

    That’s a magnificent positive. Embrace it!

  103. Florence nee Fedup

    Menzie was another that hung around too long. One who was happier in mother England than here. One who did little, left us with a war and order for expensive warplanes on the way out.

    The country has flourished since the time of Whitlam. he couldn’t caused too much harm. Most of what he did, still stands today in one form or another.

    Years ago I attempted to gauge Neil’s age. Was he a young inexperience youth or old ignorant old coot.

    We now know from comments he has made over the last few days, is the latter.

    Neil, Whitlam even had surpluses. Very low unemployment near 2% or less. Not bad interest rates.

    Not the stagnation high interest rate and high unemployment that flowed from Howard as treasurer. Didn’t do much better as PM.

  104. Florence nee Fedup

    Miriam could probably describe some of the marvelous jobs that were available in the bush in Menzies time. The men who work on the railways, keeping them going. Low wages, with families, many big, living in tents alongside the rail tracks in many towns. Yes, was a wonderful time for families.

    Worse for women who received 4/5th low male wage. Worse if they went on the dole. The 4/5ths applied there a well.

    I went to school with some of these kids. They were wonderful people.

  105. Neil of Sydney

    Neil, Whitlam even had surpluses. Very low unemployment near 2% or less

    Gough was handed unemployment at 2% and in no time flat doubled it to 4%. Back in those days after a generation of unemployment at 2% a 4% rate was regarded as a disaster. Gough set in motion a generation of high unemployment.

    The man was an economic disaster. And he trashed the budget. He increased govt spending by huge amounts , i think in one year by 20%. He did raise taxes to cover the increase in spending but it was just a matter of time before the budget got into deficit.

    Menzies was the beneficiary of a booming time

    No, Menzies good economic numbers was due to good management.

  106. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    Australia had already taken back control of its own sovereign currency by the start of the Whitlam era. Whitlam did not need to worry about the budget getting into deficit which is what MMT is telling you, Neil.

    Whitlam was trying to make amends for the wasted opportunities foisted on Australia by 2 1/2 decades of Liberal inaction and slovenly government.

  107. Freethinker

    Jennifer, do not bother to have a politically educated debate with Neil because he do not value all the reforms that Gough have done. They are against his ideology.
    It will like debate with Mathias Cormann.

  108. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    Thanks Freethinker,

    but Neil and his ilk should not be allowed to shut down discussion either.

  109. mark

    Sydney,the best and the worst of humanity.mark

  110. jimhaz

    Neil,

    The unemployment rate needs to be viewed in context with other western countries, otherwise you are unfairly blaming Whitlam.

    Between 1966 to 1972 the US unemployment rate averaged 4.31. From 1973 to 1981 the US rate averaged 6.62 – a 2.2% gain.

    UK rates are similar but reached a peak of about 12.5% in 1981. The UK chart is interesting.

    http://www.economicshelp.org/blog/780/unemployment/unemployment-rates-history/

    Australia followed the world trend, however we started from a lower base:

    “Between 1966 and 1972 the unemployment rate averaged less than 2%. This was followed by a period of rapid and sustained increases in unemployment between 1973 and 1981, when the unemployment rate rose from 2% to 6%”

    It is however true that the Oz rate was helped by lower immigration. During the 64-70 period migration rose by 50%, but fell back down when unemployment began to rise around the world.

  111. Andreas Bimba

    My article also missed another way the old party duopoly receive an unfair advantage. Parties or independents that gain more than 4% of the first preference vote, receive government election funding of ~$2.50 per vote received following an election.

    A quote from Nick Xenophon’s website:

    “It’s a bit rich for the major parties to be having a go at me when at the 2013 election the Liberal Party alone received almost $24m in federal funding and $20m in declared donations and Labor $21m in funding and more than $11m in donations”.

    You can see from Nick’s figures that the government is the main source of election funding for the duopoly, as well as the Greens. The ‘fat cuckoos already in the nest’ simply for being popular at the last election have an unfair advantage and therefore by default, are not going to give much room for new players to enter the political game.

    The 4% of the first preference vote hurdle for government election funding, I contend is also highly undemocratic, especially as Australia’s politics is moving rapidly away from the corrupt duopoly to a more multi party and independents based system. I think a new 0.5% first preference vote hurdle deserves fair consideration and debate. The AEC already has tight rules for candidate eligibility.

    http://www.aec.gov.au/parties_and_representatives/public_funding/index.htm

    https://nxt.org.au/campaign-blog/2m-windfall-story-a-lot-of-hot-air/

  112. Möbius Ecko

    “…the Liberal Party alone received almost $24m in federal funding and $20m in declared donations and Labor $21m in funding and more than $11m in donations.”

    Andreas Bimba I wonder if Xenophon stating “declared” for the Liberals and not for Labor was deliberate or just the way he phrased it. If the former it would be a subtle dig at the very shonky ways in which the Liberals fund raise.

  113. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    Hear, hear Andreas.

    Mobius, I’d say the inference to the Liberals’ “declared” donations was a deliberate dig at the likelihood of the Libs having at least the same again of ‘undeclared’ donations via all their shonky ‘foundations’ and ‘institutes’.

  114. Carol Taylor

    Was I wrong, but I seemed to hear an aside two weeks before the election when Labor announced the start of their campaign that the Liberals wouldn’t be starting theirs until the following week (only 1 week prior to election day), so that they wouldn’t have to start using Liberal Party funds for their campaign until, basically the death knell. Until then, assumed is public funds. If this is so nary a bleat from the msm.

  115. Möbius Ecko

    That’s true Carol. The parties, except for direct party political ads, are publicly funded up until the time they launch their campaign. Because of this parties normally delay their campaign launches until the last moment. I don’t know what the rule is on this but obviously one week before the election is OK, otherwise yet again the Liberals behaved corruptly with impunity, which is their SOP.

    This means that Turnbull and to a lesser extent Shorten and their cohorts were flying around the country campaigning fully compensated on the public purse up until their official campaign launch.

    Just another in a long long long line of rorts perpetrated by the so called guardians of our democracy, and just another thing that needs to be urgently reformed.

  116. cornlegend

    The list of payments of a public record and not just LNP and Labor
    The payment per vote is indexed, it is currently the current rate is 262.784 per vote

    The payments are on the public record
    Summary of all Party Returns – 2014-15 — Found 84 returns
    you can check it out here

    http://periodicdisclosures.aec.gov.au/SummaryParty.aspx

    Where minor parties also collect

    The Greens NSW $5,057,283.00
    Australian Greens $2,355,249.00
    Australian Greens
    Victorian Branch $2,986,680.00
    Christian Democratic Party
    (Fred Nile Group) $1,424,746.00
    The Arts Party $9,911.00
    Pirate Party Australia $10,126.00

    being just 6 of the 84 declared

    he Australian Electoral Commission has released the declared donations given to political parties in the 2012-13 financial year, with the Liberal Party receiving four times more than the ALP. Search the full dataset to see who gave how much to the parties.

    http://www.abc.net.au/news/interactives/tables/aec-political-donations-table/

    there is also some unexpected gems at https://www.theguardian.com/news/datablog/2013/may/28/australia-political-donations-parties
    that come as a bit of a shock.
    Getup spends almost double that of the Minerals Council
    {except when they wanted Rudd gone $22 mill.}

  117. Florence nee Fedup

    That is what was missing from this election, funding from industry backing the Liberals.

  118. Andreas Bimba

    @diannaart (11 July 5:23pm) Your comment:

    “Why does Labor think it can achieve anything without the support of other progressives? (and it does not HAVE to be a formal coalition like the LNP).
    We know the LNP stands for global corporation and the ridiculously wealthy along with the odd bedfellow of fundamentalist Christianity.
    But what does Labor really stand for? It cannot appease the corporate gods at the same time as providing the framework for an equitable Australia. The uber wealthy can afford a small piece of pie, the rest of us cannot.
    Labor has 3 years in which to convince it is a party for progression rather than stultification.”

    end of quote.

    All the points you make in your comment are spot on. Currently Labor is following the duopoly strategy of trying to appeal to the swinging voter in the swinging seats in the hope of winning a majority to form government. They are also doing whatever they can, including preferencing the Liberal Party in some seats to try to slow the advance of the Greens in the inner city electorates, but this strategy will not work and the Greens are unstoppable here, especially in Melbourne. The Greens are set to win a few lower house seats in the 2019 federal election and were very close to winning this election. This process will continue for as long as Labor remains uncompetitive in the progressive political market.

    The Greens are also making substantial gains in the more affluent established blue ribbon seats in Melbourne where they are not only picking up former Labor voters but are picking up large numbers of former Liberal voters that are upset with the hard right crony capitalist backward thinking policies of the Liberal Party. In these seats the voters are in general better informed and the Institute of Public Affairs agenda that the Liberals are implementing is electoral poison for many, as it should be. The Greens may win some of these seats in the 2019 election. The Greens in the other major cities missed an opportunity here to follow the strategy used in Melbourne.

    The middle class outer suburbanites who are often in a precarious financial situation with large mortgages and are fed on a diet of lies and neo-liberal propaganda from the Murdoch press and commercial television, by and large are still choosing to cling to the Liberal Party despite all the abuses as they see Labor and the Greens as more risky choices. A bit like a battered child returning to an abusive parent as others are not seen as suitable parents. These voters were not convinced that Labor had much to offer and apart from an enlightened, up to 12% who voted Greens, remain almost totally ignorant of the policies and direction of the Greens. Because the Greens receive such poor media exposure it remains difficult for the Greens to effectively reach this electorate. In the past Bob Brown was able to attract a significant following in these electorates based on major well publicised conservation issues such as the Tasmanian Gordon river dam project as well as with the clearing of native forests. The hip pocket nerve has apparently now taken priority over conservation and even fighting global warming for many in these electorates. The superior economic and employment opportunities, along with the superior health care, education and social support policies of the Greens must be brought to the attention of this electorate more effectively.

    The urban and regional industrial heartland remains solidly Labor but the Liberals still receive substantial votes from the more money oriented voter, for example those wealthy enough to take advantage of the generous negative gearing, CGT concession and superannuation contribution concessions that can be exploited to avoid the payment of all income tax. The Greens by aggressively promoting the cause of the Australian manufacturing industry and bringing their good industry, renewable energy and sustainable economy policies to the attention of these voters could make substantial inroads as after all both the Liberals and Labor continue to follow the disastrous neo-liberal, total free trade and globalisation policy platform despite the net loss of millions of jobs for the Australian working class over the last forty years. The Greens should have developed a comprehensive full employment policy and ensured that this was well publicised and debated in the community and mass media. Only the Greens can genuinely offer a full employment policy as they are the only substantial party that has as policy of running ongoing moderate federal government deficits of 3% of GDP during the decade it will take to transition to a sustainable economy. This Keynesian economic stimulus will in all likelihood not even lead to an increase in the national debt but will actually reduce it through increased tax revenue and reduced unemployment and welfare expenditure just as occurred in the post war period in the 1940’s and 1950’s.

    Nick Xenophon and his NXT party received a very significant 21% of the first preference House of Reps vote based largely on his very effective support for Australian manufacturing specifically the steel industry in Whyalla, the car industry and the defence industry, especially naval vessels and submarines. The SA, VIC and to a lesser extent NSW, QLD and WA Greens could have done the same with a few industrial region targeted candidates, support teams and state wide publicity. The campaign of the SA Greens was very good but needed to be expanded to cover the areas exploited by NXT and the SA Greens vote fell to 6% as a result. Political competition is beneficial to all, especially the electorate.

    http://vtr.aec.gov.au/HouseStateFirstPrefsByPartyByVoteType-20499-SA.htm

    Another weak area for the Greens is the rural or regional areas of Australia which faces an electorate stuck to the National Party despite their generally appalling policies for the country as a whole. The National Party has a regional focus and it is difficult for the nation wide parties to match this as the Liberals, Labor and the Greens are inevitably going to receive most of their votes from the major cities. The Greens have made good progress with rural progressive voters in the towns and in the sea or rural change communities. The necessity to not compromise on animal welfare and nature conservation issues also excludes the more fundamentalist rural voter but young regional voters are being won over by the superior Greens policy platform such as with renewable energy and support for regional industries such as food processing and plantation timber. Good local Greens candidates that make themselves known throughout the electorates and can clearly demonstrate how particular Greens policies help them personally can be very effective. Membership for the Greens must increase substantially in regional areas and these branches must have input on policy but without the core Greens values being compromised.

  119. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    Excellent post, Andreas.

    Are you a policy advisor or party strategist for the Greens? If you’re not, you should be.

    🙂

  120. nurses1968

    Andreas Bimba
    “The campaign of the SA Greens was very good but needed to be expanded to cover the areas exploited by NXT and the SA Greens vote fell to 6% as a result”
    Andreas could you explain in a bit more detail how the Greens campaign in S.A. was “very good”?.
    When a Greens vote fell to 6% down a full 2.2% on 2013 Election and 10 of the 11 Greens candidates had swings against them of
    -2.3%, -3.7% ,-1.2% ,-2.5%, -1.2% -1.4% -6.2% -1.8% -2.9% -1.0% and the sole Green candidate to increase the vote but by just +0.2%,
    The fact that this can be seem as a “good campaign” indicates the Greens have lost the plot when a bad loss in almost every seat bar one is a positive
    Can you explain your logic on that “good campaign?”

  121. diannaart

    Andreas

    You made some excellent points.

    First off was the observation about Labor telling its supporters to preference the Libs!!! We can observe the hate campaign against the Greens right here at AIM – a person won’t vote against a party unless they see them as the enemy. Slights have been over magnified, mistakes used as weaponry – a great deal of energy wasted on the Greens, by Labor which should’ve been used against the LNP.

    ….AND the Greens appear to be making the same mistake as Labor by painting themselves into a more corporate corner rather than offering a real alternative. Takes courage.

    Nick Xenophon has shown that people really want an alternative to the Lib/Labs. The Greens need the fortitude to fully embrace progressive policies and ignore the taunts and misrepresentation by both Labor and the Coal-ition.

    Progressive parties could do well in courting the regional vote – not all regionals are rusted-on Nationals or Bob Katters.

  122. Andreas Bimba

    @Jennifer Thanks, yes I am involved with policy development along with many others. The state office has asked branches and members for their conclusions and recommendations regarding the 2016 federal election campaign so my previous comment will form the core of my response.

    @nurses1968 The fall in votes for the Greens in SA was simply due to NXT getting 21% of the vote. The Liberals and Labor lost far more votes to NXT.

    If NXT had a strong Victorian presence, the Greens vote would probably have fallen by a similar amount.

    The SA Greens should not stop campaigning with the current range of issues as they would then risk losing their 6 to 10% base vote. They along with the Greens in all other states and territories must expand the campaigning strategy so that it clearly demonstrates a full employment policy and an ambitious sustainable manufacturing and rural industry policy. The aim should be to do this even more effectively than NXT.

    The best seat for the Greens in SA was Adelaide with 10.3% of the first preference vote. The swing to the Greens was +0.2% while for Labor it was -6.2% and for the Liberals it was -5.4%. NXT’s vote was 12.6%.

    This compares with the seat of Melbourne where Adam Bandt received 43.6% of the first preference vote with a swing of +0.9%.

    Considering the fact that Adelaide has historically been a progressive pioneer, the Greens vote should be a lot better in the inner city electorates but Labor apparently remains popular with progressives. Unemployment and closing industries are now probably major concerns and NXT are seen as the strongest in this area.

    In regard to the Greens becoming more supportive of business and corporations rather than a more state owned economy. I think the inner city hipsters and the tertiary educated voter base of the Greens was always in favour of a mixed private and public sector economy and would support whichever gave the best results. Most social, health and educational services along with most of the arts sector and nature conservation would be publicly owned while most other goods and services would be provided by the private sector in a competitive market place subject to regulation to protect the public interest.

  123. Freethinker

    IMHO the Greens have not done better because their policy of bringing 50000 refugees. This police upset many voters that are worry about security (if they are correct or not is is not the point)
    If the Greens change this policy and try to make it more attractive I am sure that will get 2 extra senators.
    Also the if the ALP refuse to start talking with the Greens very soon regarding 2019, the Greens should start talking with all the micro parties that have similar policies to work together.
    That micro parties should unite to form one party only and they will have a senator as well.

  124. Andreas Bimba

    @Cornlegend (12 July 11:03am)

    Fortunately for everyone there is no green pork. The Greens policy platform is attainable with improved tax revenue from much less generous tax concessions (neg. gear, CGT and super contrib.), a crack down on the chronic levels of corporate tax evasion and a Buffet Rule tax on the most wealthy. Also the Liberals $50 billion of tax cuts for large corporations would not happen. Only the Greens have as policy Keynesian economic stimulus of 3% of GDP on an ongoing basis to help pay for critical infrastructure and the transition to a sustainable economy.

    http://greens.org.au/budget-principles

    @Dan Rowden (12 July 12:20pm), Cornlegend and others concerned about the Greens vote.

    On the Greens being stuck at 10%. All the hurdles I have mentioned in this article and in my comments do disproportionately affect the Greens. The wider electorate generally remains ignorant of what the Greens can offer and most still see the Greens as tree hugging, gay, anti nuclear, animal rights activists. One thing for sure, the non duopoly vote is now at 25% and growing but with our rubbish seat based House of Reps. electoral system the number of seats held by the ‘non duopoly’ remains tiny. The fact that the Greens did not lose ground at the same time that NXT, One Nation and other independents and micro parties greatly increased their vote is still an achievement.

    This reminds me of when I worked for Toyota and Toyota Japan were really proud of a range of new models they had introduced which they thought would increase market share. The models were popular but market share remained unchanged. What happened was that new entrants to the market had gained market share, existing companies that also innovated kept but did not improve market share whilst those that did not innovate sufficiently like Nissan lost market share. In other words in a competitive market you must run or preferably sprint or you will be overtaken. Walking is not an option.

    Labor are walking with a worried expression, the Liberals are always in the media spot light but are drug cheats, the Nationals are given are huge head start because they had to travel all the way from the country, the Greens are usually running in the general direction of the finish line with a few stumbles while NXT has shot out of the starting blocks like a rocket and an odd orange haired woman is not that much behind despite the screams of abuse from the crowd. While this is happening the dark suited men in the corporate boxes are rubbing out and rewriting the cheques while some advisors are thinking whether the shredders should be prepared.

  125. cornlegend

    This is a quick response, still have visitors here , will answer in full later,
    Andreas Bimba,
    before I answer just a quick question. Why don’t you include your Greens link in your bio.?
    Others with party links do .

    “Labor are walking with a worried expression”

    What gave you that idea? Labor are happy little vegemites at the moment, Bill re elected unopposed, 2nd biggest gain in new MPs against a first term Gov, 14 or so new MPs, 14 LNP MPs now on a margin of less than 2% {Although it would have been nice to win outright,,, but ..next time 😀

    The only ones with worried looks on their dials are Greens and those who expected Labor to come to their rescue but voted for others

    “@Dan Rowden (12 July 12:20pm), Cornlegend and others concerned about the Greens vote.”

    Now, I don’t speak for Dan Rowden but I have no concern at all about the Greens vote.
    They hit their peak, probably now in decline again.

    I’m more concerned about those trying to force the Greens upon Labor in bloody coalitions.

    “Labor are walking with a worried expression”
    No, from what I’m hearing, with the divisions between NSW and Vic Greens, the Carol Medcalfe incident,The Black Wiggles failure, the worried expressions are elsewhere,
    perhaps a comment on this article?

    “The smug looks on the faces of the PM and Greens leader Richard Di Natale are long gone. They gambled and they lost. Di Natale has not quite grasped how far he can drag his base away from a left position.

    The average Greens voter does not like deals with the Liberals who, on the question of the environment, are vandals compared with the Labor Party. Make no mistake, along with Turnbull, the Greens come out of this election as the losers. They failed to win any extra House of Representative seats and they lost a senator. It is not supposed to be the Greens joining in with political tricks and cynical behaviour. The rank and file want more open party management and the leader is no longer the Saviour. Even among his limited parliamentary members, questions are being asked. he likely makeup of the new Senate is 30 Coalition, 27 Labor, nine Greens, three Xenophon, three Hanson, two Liberal Democratic Party, Lambie and Hinch. These numbers best demonstrate the bitter foolishness of Malcolm Turnbull’s tricky constitutional ploy to achieve a double dissolution. For the short-term gain, the Prime Minister has delivered his country long-term pain. The Coalition had 33 senators in the previous parliament so it has dropped three. This may not seem catastrophic, but when you consider that 38 votes block resolution and 39 is the key number for passing legislation that loss of three votes is a disaster. If Labor and the Greens oppose legislation, they have 36 votes and need only two of the 10 odd bods and sods to block the bill.
    The Liberals, on the other hand, need nine of that last 10 to get anything through. It would be my contention that such a task is doomed to failure.”

    http://www.theaustralian.com.au/opinion/columnists/graham-richardson/federal-election-2016-mandates-all-round-when-next-senate-meets/news-story/efe916486f94d61651e23ff925ed497b

  126. Andreas Bimba

    @Jennifer Thanks, yes I am involved with policy development along with many others. The state office has asked branches and members for their conclusions and recommendations regarding the 2016 federal election campaign so my previous comment will form the core of my response.

    @nurses1968 The fall in votes for the Greens in SA was simply due to NXT getting 21% of the vote. The Liberals and Labor lost far more votes to NXT.

    If NXT had a strong Victorian presence, the Greens vote would probably have fallen by a similar amount.

    The SA Greens should not stop campaigning with the current range of issues as they would then risk losing their 6 to 10% base vote. They along with the Greens in all other states and territories must expand the campaigning strategy so that it clearly demonstrates a full employment policy and an ambitious sustainable manufacturing and rural industry policy. The aim should be to do this even more effectively than NXT.

    The best seat for the Greens in SA was Adelaide with 10.3% of the first preference vote. The swing to the Greens was +0.2% while for Labor it was -6.2% and for the Liberals it was -5.4%. NXT’s vote was 12.6%.

    This compares with the seat of Melbourne where Adam Bandt received 43.6% of the first preference vote with a swing of +0.9%.

    Considering the fact that Adelaide has historically been a progressive pioneer the Greens vote should be a lot better in the inner city electorates but Labor apparently remains popular with progressives. Unemployment and closing industries are now probably major concerns and NXT are seen as the strongest in this area.

    In regard to the Greens becoming more supportive of business and corporations rather than a more state owned economy. I think the inner city hipsters and the tertiary educated voter base of the Greens was always in favour of a mixed private and public sector economy and would support whichever gave the best results. Most social, health and educational services along with most of the arts sector and nature conservation would be publicly owned while most other goods and services would be provided by the private sector in a competitive market place subject to regulation to protect the public interest.

  127. Andreas Bimba

    The AEC yesterday (17 Aug 2016) released the final election funding payments summary for candidates and parties for the July 2016 federal election.

    In order to obtain election funding a candidate must obtain at least four per cent of the first preference vote.

    Funding entitlements are calculated using an indexed sum per first preference vote. At the 2016 federal election, each first preference vote was worth 262.784 cents.

    http://www.aec.gov.au/media/media-releases/2016/08-17e.htm

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

The maximum upload file size: 2 MB. You can upload: image, audio, video, document, spreadsheet, interactive, text, archive, code, other. Links to YouTube, Facebook, Twitter and other services inserted in the comment text will be automatically embedded. Drop file here

Return to home page
%d bloggers like this: