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The People have spoken. A Pox on both your houses.

As we enter the analysis period of the election, it’s time to face the harsh reality. If there is one aspect of this election outcome that is crystal clear, it is that both major parties missed out on addressing the one issue that drove one in four to vote for minor parties and independent candidates.

That one issue was: inequality. Whatever the politicians were saying, there was nothing in the detail that suggested any interest in correcting the appalling imbalance that currently exists between the haves and the have-nots.

On one side, we have the middle and lower class, who have the least scope to drive spending, and on the other, the ones who dangle political leaders like puppets on a string; the highly protected, dominating wealthy who hide behind the all-powerful collective pseudonym we know as “the markets.”

Politicians have been conditioned to pay close attention to the markets. They are reminded constantly by those who bankroll them, not to upset the markets.

Everyone is conditioned to consider what the markets will think. We must do what the markets say. If we upset the markets, we are told, we are risking the very foundation of capitalism.

What a load of bollocks.

In terms of national fiscal management, there is a falsehood that permeates both sides of politics and the mainstream media today. It is the idea that a budget surplus is proof of good policy, a belief that has no basis in economics.

This falsehood is now considered to be an infallible doctrine, one that must be followed to the letter, or forever carry the consequences of credit downgrades, unsustainable debt levels and a reputation for poor fiscal responsibility.

All of which is rubbish. When that falsehood is allowed to dominate the argument for austerity over stimulus, it not only holds our nation back, but deprives the average working Australian of their share of the nation’s wealth.

That falsehood comes from “the markets”.

130811_wall_street_ap_605 The lessons of the GFC have been ignored. It was the excessive greed of the investment bankers of Wall Street that brought the world to its knees.

For that, they were exposed for the criminals that they were and rewarded with bailouts that enabled them to continue doing what they do best: ruin peoples’ lives.

While millions suffered losing their homes, their jobs, their families and many, their lives, greedy bankers were given the means and the all-clear, to carry on.

This was the result of politicians giving unwavering support for the markets. This was the result of politicians ignoring the needs of the people and pandering to their masters.

There is none among us today, who can say we are better for the experience of the GFC, because we are not. Except those who caused it. Once again they have been let off with no more than a wrap on the knuckles.

But there are signs that the people have had enough. Trump, Brexit, this Australian election and doubtless other examples gone unreported, there are signs the people are saying, “a pox on all their houses.”

The stone has been dislodged and is collecting the moss as it rolls. People are waking up. The difficulty they face is expressing themselves in ways that hit home. At the moment, social media is their voice and elections are their best weapon.

It was, perhaps, best illustrated in a Facebook discussion this week, around the election of Pauline Hanson to the senate. Emotions were pretty strong in the post-election wrap and as one would expect, not much of it was complimentary to Miss Hanson.

One comment, however, looked beyond the simplicity of the senate result to reflect on the much deeper problem of inequality. If comments like this are ignored by government, we will see a continuation and proliferation of minor party and independent support in future elections.

The author is Francesca Agosti, and this is what she wrote:

2617984-3x2-940x627 “(Pauline Hanson) is a reflection of the worldview of many Australians. Racist, xenophobic, fearful, intolerant, superior, self-entitled, and full of hatred for anything that isn’t WASP. She reflects a certain view in this country, a popular view in fact, and this is why she was successful in garnering the third highest primary vote in this election. Scary stuff, but a reflection of the white supremacist colonial racist underbelly of this country that is not so hidden any more. The racists are coming out of the woodwork to proudly ‘reclaim’ their country. And the fact that people are so disillusioned with the general state of play, the loss of jobs, high cost of living, housing unaffordability, the erosion of health and education services, greater instability in the Middle East and Europe, the looming threat of climate change, the rampant greed that is fuelling social inequality and redistributing wealth to the already affluent, all these things are empowering people like Hanson to rise to the top of the heap again, like flotsam and jetsam. She is a reflection of the general malaise and feeling of uneasiness that people have in a world that is slowly imploding while our leaders fiddle around in their underpants.”

The social, cultural and economic malaise we find ourselves in today, the malaise that drives people to support and vote for candidates outside the major parties, is real and deserves far more attention than either Liberal or Labor gave it.

If political parties continue to pander to the markets and ignore what is happening under their very noses, they will suffer the consequences. The message is simple; the people are speaking. Ignore them at your peril.

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76 comments

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  1. cornlegend

    That one issue was: inequality
    “On one side, we have the middle and lower class, who have the least scope to drive spending, and on the other, the ones who dangle political leaders like puppets on a string; the highly protected, dominating wealthy who hide behind the all-powerful collective pseudonym we know as “the markets.”

    John, the issue of inequality as anyone working on prepolling or election day handing out HTVs, or out talking to voters will tell you, wasn’t an issue of major concern
    The average voter out there just isn’t sophisticated, or even vaguely interested enough to get to that point

    The “the middle and lower class” were the ones who provided the votes to get the elected representatives of “the highly protected, dominating wealthy” back into power

  2. Jason

    Labor is the only progressive party that gets real policy change implemented, history proves that over decades. The greens need to stop fighting labor and fight the liberals instead or they will simply be a sideline minority party of disruption that won’t ever have to make real decisions. Labor is not perfect but at least it gets a majority and gets things done like tripling he tax free threshold probably the most progressive wealth transfer to the poor ever! Stop fighting labor and fight the Libs head on. Disagree with labor most definitely but don’t undermine progressive policy purely for idealistic fantasy objectives. Climate change means went longer have time to waste. Please wake up.

  3. Peter F

    ‘The lessons of the GFC have been ignored.’ I agree, and watch this government ignore the lesson of stimulus as a solution, as carried out by the ALP on the advice of treasury. This mob will cut cut cut, except to their supporters, and we will all suffer.

  4. wam

    wow the glass is half full, John.
    Most people in Australia do not think we are racist, most people were told that labor and liberal were the same and only the diludbran cared about us. Pretty well 1.4 m went to the fringe, as the gloating brandis points out this is the lowest labor vote.
    This gives labor the chance to show:
    the libs as liars about their economic credentials
    The hanson party(plus the odd lib/nat) as dangerous racists
    the diludbrans as pragmatic waiverers
    The trick will be to get on 9 to counter the crap from turncoat.
    The key, like tanya tried on QA, is to take the lies of this parliament, liberally sprinkled with howard, the rabbott and medicare, to us ready for 2019.

  5. David

    Interesting read, thanks John. I share your concern about the “markets” too. Over the past 8 years, since GFC, the “markets” have been successfully manipulated to the extent that a huge transfer of wealth has taken place. The gap between the “haves” and the “have nots” has grown out of all proportion to the actual value created. The fiat currencies have been gamed by the finance industry, and true market value is no longer reliable. All the checks and balances to prevent manipulation are being eroded, and the exploitation is obvious now. We are all being driven by the USA, Nato (the Corporation) and the MSM, to a nuclear war, and I wonder how many others can see this? How much have we committee to building new submarines, buying new combat aircraft and sending our troops overseas again to fight another war for the Bankers?

  6. Freethinker

    Interesting view John, in some ways I have to agree with cornlegend, the electorate it is not politically educated enough to cast their vote base in inequality and not to mention understanding the basic macroeconomics.
    What is happens now it is nothing new (apart of social media) it happens in my mother country Uruguay in the decade of 1960.
    Social protest without a clear aim based on understanding in how to fix the problem will end on no winners.
    The only hope IMO is education at university level for those that in the future will be running the country.
    I do not think that all the politicians are serving the interests of their masters, I think that they have been formed like this since starting studying economy and other subjects which form their theory in how to manage the country and politics in general.
    The day that a team of politicians have the courage to try something different to “what have been implant” in their brains and have a little less greed we will start seen changes.
    Without that opportunists will use the chaos as their advantage.
    Reading the Finance and Developing page if the IMF perhaps we start seen some changes.
    I would as the fellow bloggers and you John to read it and express your opinion about it.

    Neoliberalism: Oversold?
    http://www.imf.org/external/pubs/ft/fandd/2016/06/ostry.htm

  7. Fedup

    There is already talk in the Australian that the Labour Party might give the Liberals the go ahead on the Superannuation Changes Turnbull wants to implement! Well it hasn’t taken Labour long to show how cowardice they are! What hope does this country have if they don’t fight against any Pre budget policies. What was the bloody election all about if all the Labour Party are going to do is agree with the stinking Liberals now the election is over!

  8. helvityni

    I agree with everything Francesca Agosti says, but I’m still baffled by the fact that we seem to get so many ‘hansons’ elected to the senate. I can’t say I was impressed with Mr Hinch on Q&A either…we need more women like Plibersek, Van Badham and Francesca Agosti out there representing us….

    Perhaps Sarah Ferguson ought to chair Q&A to discipline those loudmouth men…

  9. mark

    Fedup -the only reason Labor would side with Turnbull on the super changes would be to drive the wedge further into the Libs. The right of the pàrty dont like it due to the retrospective element in it. If it got through the way it is then the Libs will implode.

  10. Freethinker

    Since I start getting interested in politics back when the ALP removed Fraser from power I have the opinion that there is not much difference between the Moderate right in the Liberals and the right faction in the ALP regarding the economy.
    Agreement between the to parties on that it is not a surprise to me.

  11. minbani

    David, I agree with you.

    John – another good article. Thank you.

  12. DisablednDesperate

    It is beginning to dawn on many that trickle down isn’t the answer but there is no one in the parliament or media talking about the answer that is MMT.

    It would awaken everyone to the fraud that has taken place and real change could take place. Unfortunately the masters do not want that to happen at any cost.

    If there was no one talking about inequality at booths that is the saddest fact of all. So many have been sold the neoliberal deficit lie.

  13. cornlegend

    In NSW Senate we had
    Senate
    New South Wales
    2016 – 12 seats, 42 columns, 151 candidates.
    That provided people with plenty of opportunity to spread their vote and give the appearance of an upsurge in minor micro,Independent voting , but

    Democratic Labour Party (DLP)Health Australia Party,Health Australia Party,Animal Justice Party,Australian Liberty Alliance,Australian Sex Party,Marijuana (HEMP) Party,Derryn Hinch’s Justice Party,Seniors United Party of Australia,Drug Law Reform,Science Party/Cyclists Party,Australian Motoring Enthusiast Party,Jacqui Lambie Network,Voluntary Euthanasia Party,VOTEFLUX.ORG | Upgrade Democracy!,Pirate Party Australia,The Arts Party,Sustainable Australia,Rise Up Australia Party,Renewable Energy Party,Online Direct Democracy – (Empowering the People!),Veterans Party,Socialist Alliance,Katter’s Australian Party,Mature Australia,CountryMinded,Socialist Equality Party,Palmer United Party,Secular Party of Australia,Australian Progressives,Non-Custodial Parents Party (Equal Parenting).Citizens Electoral Council
    and, not forgetting Group G

    A diverse buch who ran for the Senate in NSW have one thing in common.
    Their Combined vote did not reach that of the old favourite INFORMAL

    {on the current count}

  14. cornlegend

    DisablednDesperate
    You’d be shocked at the number who don’t know who their sitting Member is, let alone have any interest in Policy

  15. Bighead1883

    cornlegend July 12, 2016 at 9:57 am

    I`m really jacked off TBH Cornie because you see this shambolic voter reformation enacted by the LNP/Greens was all part of the DD and very planned

    Now comrade,NO Greens supporter can plead ignorance to the fact that the LNP was going to use the ABCC as the DD trigger as the print media and online had stories of this everywhere

    Claiming they never voted with the LNP in the Senate over the ABCC does not directly excuse the reality that the Greens were as responsible for the DD by backing the LNP in the AEC shamscam time limit for a DD to be called

    Now with the DD only a half quots was required and we all heard how this REFORM was going to do away with Micro Parties and various nutters [nice list of Micro Parties and various nutters you put up there Cornie},we see it did No such thing

    And hey we all told them,because Labor politicians and supporters who have a clue as to how things work,asked the Greens don`t do this,but alas the Greens just had to OPEN the door WIDE for Pauline Hanson to emerge and barge in

    To top off the entry of multiple One Nation Hansonites,we now have the conservative NXT there as a support grouping for the LNP

    So explain to me please how these Senate reforms got rid of the nutters comrades

  16. SGB

    Freethinker

    Yes like your link, however I see it as a very long winded example of the the double edge of the Keynesian “the paradox of thrift”.

  17. Freethinker

    SGB, Even if it is a dim light on the lamp of wisdom it is better than nothing.
    It have to start somewhere.

  18. Klaus

    Hi John, great article.

    Unfortunately, I also say, that inequality does not play the role it should have. Not yet anyway. I know plenty of Australians who struggle through each week, having difficulties to pay electricity, rent (these people don’t even dream of having a successful mortgage) and normal living stuff like food, petrol etc. Not much, if any in entertainment.

    And they are the people (mostly), who either don’t vote (their voice is not being heard), or vote what their parents vote, or make a deliberate non-valid vote (because it is mandatory).

    On top of that, Labor tries to address this, but Bill is too timid. He doesn’t like to shake the apple cart so to speak. But that, a leader must (see Bernie in the US).

    Only then will we get voters coming out of the wood work, fighting the establishment and everything that represents “The markets”

    We need a Bernie here and now. But I have strong hope, the government will be another disaster and won’t last 3 years. With the likes of Morrison, Dutton, Hunt, Turnbull, Ciobo, Cash, Joyce, Pine, Cormann, Brandis….. we won’t need to wait long. The people are stunningly incompetent, void of ideas, bordering on the criminal (if not there already).

  19. SGB

    John
    Great article, not sure I agree with everything you’ve said bit yes to the majority.

    Meanwhile, I believe the answer is in the hands of those that do understand the difference between orthodox and hetrodox economic thinking.

    My believe and I have been trying to achoeve this almost on my own is to challenge and educate the mass of our society about how money really works.

    I know that there is yourself who backs me up and often promulgates stuff on AIMN and Facebook, but as I said once before AIMN, is seen as a Lefty rag and therfore largely ignored by the Right supporters.

    We have to get the general population to understand the real way that money works so that we can point out the folly of unfettered neoliberalism.

    I see that the problem of MMT is the word ‘Theory’ in its title, it goves the impression that what is being discussed is merely theory and not necessarily how the real world of money actually works!

    SGB

  20. SGB

    Sorry about the spelling and gramma, I did not get time to correct ?

    But you’ll get the drift

    SGB

  21. Harquebus

    Our world is being destroyed in the pursuit of growth only to satisfy corporate greed.
    We will all suffer the consequences and the bulk of humanity will not survive.

    “On a finite planet, nothing grows forever.” — Richard Heinberg.

    “the UN warns bluntly that world population, now well over seven billion ‘has reached a stage where the amount of resources needed to sustain it exceeds what is available”
    http://churchandstate.org.uk/2016/06/there-are-not-enough-resources-to-support-the-worlds-population/

  22. jimhaz

    [“the UN warns bluntly that world population, now well over seven billion ‘has reached a stage where the amount of resources needed to sustain it exceeds what is available”]

    The empathetic lefties here never hear this. They never comment on it at all. Gets in the way of their love of immigration/high refugee intake and the utopian concept of equality.

  23. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    I agree with John,

    it is incumbent on the political parties to address inequality and neither the LNP nor Labor even mentioned increasing Newstart to a dignified and sustainable level, as well as addressing other inequitable welfare issues, such as single parents being forced to stay on Newstart instead of a single parent’s pension.

    I’m not surprised about the LNP Degenerates who deliberately aim to make life hard for economically disadvantaged people, but I’m very angry at Labor for showing – yet again – a total attitude of indifference to these people.

    When Snotty Morrisscum brazenly offered tax cuts to filthy rich Big Biz in his Budget Speech and made no mention of poverty stricken welfare people who can’t get non-existant jobs, Billy Shortarse didn’t respond in the Budget Reply with what Labor would do to address the economically disadvantaged. That was a very bad look, Bill. Typical neoliberal mentality, which needs immediate abandonment for a return to Democratic Socialism.

    A pox on both their houses, indeed.

  24. Freethinker

    Harquebus July 12, 2016 at 10:53 am
    Our world is being destroyed in the pursuit of growth only to satisfy corporate greed.

    Harquebus, It takes two to tango, the people have addiction for consumerism and that is one of the major causes for global warming and at the same time make the rich richer.
    Just image when the present markets are saturated and the big corporations, the ones that feed the people’s addiction start looking for new markets like the 3rd world countries in Africa.
    Yes they will be growth but he planet will be kaput!
    Greed is killing us and it is not the solution to just blame the suppliers, the ones that demand are also guilty.

    jimhaz, do not worry about the lefties, as I said above the ones in the right also are guilty and will look for more ways to make more damage.
    Their greed will not stop on the “developed” countries and to keep the masses at bay they will promote ideas of division like yours in not believing in equality. ( which equals greed, you are Ok bugger the rest)
    I guess that at the end it have nothing to do with left or right, it is a moral value.

  25. Florence nee Fedup

    If and when Labor allows their super changes to go through will upset more on the right. if Turnbull had any power or political nous, he would adopt Shorten’s scheme. Shorten only fights battles, that Labor can win. As it should be.

  26. cornlegend

    Florence nee Fedup
    I agree

  27. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    jimhaz,

    I’m a lefty and I’m suspicious of unbridled economic migration, which I believe is putting immense pressure on our environment, employment prospects for Australians, cities, housing availability and so on.

    I’m perfectly happy for such numbers to be significantly reduced with the proviso that humanitarian assistance for asylum seekers and refugees is significantly increased. With these two mechanisms working together, we would still see a reduction of new people coming into the country, and less pressure on the above.

  28. Fedup

    It’s these new asylum seekers that we have to be very wary of. On one hand you are saying immense pressure on our environment and the next you want to increase refugees. You can’t have it both ways. I believe Australia have taken more than our fair share of Middle Eastern refugees who will contribute nothing to this Country because of their stinking culture, so called religion and their inability to truly become Australians. How can you possibly have less pressure on issues you raised and at the same time increase our intake. Doesn’t make any bloody sense! We need only to take refugees from white countries, ones who will become part of Australia and without demands from our governments on cultural matters and the degradation of our country’s infrastructure and our way of life!

  29. Harquebus

    jimhaz and Freethinker.

    No argument from me.
    Cornocopians are soon to get a severe reality check.

    My comment was in response to JK’s “they will suffer the consequences”.

    No one will escape.

  30. Dan Rowden

    Cornie,

    A diverse buch who ran for the Senate in NSW have one thing in common.
    Their Combined vote did not reach that of the old favourite INFORMAL

    Interesting, but do you think the informal vote on this occasion might be said to be artificially inflated due to the news rules and complexity? I was expecting a pretty hefty informal vote this time round, even with the “savings” conditions.

  31. Steve Laing - makeourvoiceheard.com

    John – I agree with your article. The average voter might not be able to articulate that this malaise is indeed driven by inequality, but fundamentally, that is what it is. A large number of people aren’t happy with their lot, and are looking for reasons why. Unlike Labor or the LNP who are largely saying we have some minor problems that we, and only we, can resolve, the opportunists like Hanson (not unlike Hitler) are happy to look for scapegoats on which to blame the problem. It is just too easy. The UK has recently done the same on Brexit which was for many people simply a vote against “foreigners”, because its easy for Murdoch to get little Englanders into a froth about such.

    The reason why we see such significant movement of people is due to two things. 1) Mass communication, which allows those who have little to observe those who have more, and therefore aspire to it. 2) Mass disruption due to war, famine, abusive governments etc. As always, big business is happy to make a quid from both, but runs a mile when it comes to sorting out the problems. And this is because big business exists in a world entirely based on competition, where the concept of working together for the common good is almost entirely alien (and often illegal!).

    The idea that competition IS the best, and only way for progress to occur are totally incorrect. Competition is hugely expensive and adds much less value than right wingers are prepared to except. It does, however, compensate the winners very, very well. The losers, not so much. It is classic games theory.

    Humans did not achieve civilisation through competition, and it is the prime fallacy that needs to be regularly and repeatedly contradicted. The market is actually rarely right.

  32. Freethinker

    This have to the “mother of all racists posts”
    QUOTE:
    FedupJuly 12, 2016 at 11:34 am
    It’s these new asylum seekers that we have to be very wary of. On one hand you are saying immense pressure on our environment and the next you want to increase refugees. You can’t have it both ways…………………………
    We need only to take refugees from white countries, ones who will become part of Australia and without demands from our governments on cultural matters and the degradation of our country’s infrastructure and our way of life! END of QUOTE

    So the extra refugees from the “white countries” do not put any pressure in the environment?
    Pauline, heart your hearth out!

  33. Dan Rowden

    Hmm, I took Fedup’s post as parody. Was I wrong to do so? Fedup?

  34. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    Well picked up, Freethinker. I hadn’t noticed the post until you said.

  35. Miriam English

    Jason, granted historically Labor have been the progressive party to get good changes happening, but to say that the Greens need to stop fighting Labor and truly fight the LNP is a bit ridiculous. The Greens fight the LNP far, far more than Labor ever do. Labor vote against proposals by the LNP about 60% of the time; the Greens vote against LNP proposals more than 90% of the time. Much of Labor’s problem at the moment is that they side with the horrid LNP far too often — almost half the time! Labor, with the LNP, have helped bring in many highly regressive changes.

    Greens generally welcome Labor doing progressive things, in fact they beg them to. As Scott Ludlum said, instead of whining about the Greens being progressive, it might make more sense for Labor to go back to their core values and actually be a progressive party again.

    Most of those who vote for the Greens are ex-Labor voters who would love to be able to vote for Labor again, but while Labor take money from and lend support to the mining industry, value the megawealthy over you and me and the environment, spy on all citizens, and spend billions to rape, torture, and murder refugees whose only “crime” was escaping danger elsewhere, it is a little hard to see them as progressive.

    Sure, they offer scraps like saying they’ll allow gays to no longer be second-class citizens sometime within 3 months of gaining office (maybe), they say they’ll keep medicare (but say nothing about ensuring it doesn’t get strangled). There are so many areas they could be truly progressive… but they said nothing in their relentless drift to the neo-liberal right. This is what is so worrying and why so many people didn’t vote Labor this election.

    Labor have caused their own problems, not the Greens. It’s about time they took some responsibility for their own actions and got on with the job of being a truly progressive party again.

    I’m sure I’m not alone in saying I’d love to be able to vote for them again.

  36. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    Beautifully said, Miriam English.

  37. Freethinker

    No Miriam you are not alone, my last vote for the ALP was to remove Fraser.

  38. Fedup

    Well you just sit back and watch freethinker! No I don’t think white people put as much pressure on governments! For middle eastern countries it’s a complete culture shock. Even by going to a new country they are not prepared to leave their old country and hatred behind them. Most of them hate anything that is not bloody Muslim! They want the whole bloody world to become Muslim. If you haven’t figured that out yet then you must deaf, blind and bloody stupid! Civil wars will break out everywhere in the world if governments don’t put a stop to these migrations of refugees from the Middle East! It’s no bloody wonder more and more people are breaking away from these political parties in this country. More and more there will be more people standing up for our country’s safety and security from these races. At least I am being honest and don’t go around with blinders on!

  39. Dan Rowden

    Miriam,

    This is what is so worrying and why so many people didn’t vote Labor this election.

    So, who is it you’re arguing they voted for?

  40. Fedup

    See as neither parties had anything worthwhile to vote for I would say people who wanted the refugee intake to remain steady voted for Turnbull and the ones who wanted more of them here voted for Labour. Bloody simple. Probably the rest voted for the bloody SSM garbage. This alone stood out as being the major issue country wide at this election. That’s all people talked about before and after the bloody election. Still going on about it. It will never end whether it’s voted in or out! Their stinking sex life is more important than actual issues effecting this nation as a whole! Just goes to show what’s important in this country and I guess people and our future come in as not important to most people!

  41. Miriam English

    Sadly, I think Fedup was being genuinely racist. Appalling… should be ashamed of his/her self.

    All through history places that experience the greatest improvements in culture, technology, and innovation tend to be places where different cultures meet and mix. Returning to the White Australia policy would end in stagnation. Just look at all the different kinds of foods, clothes, music, and more recently, technologies that come from non-whites now… not just from Asia, but beginning to come from Africa too.

    I have come to suspect that White culture (whatever that is) is now in decline. If we insist on clinging to it then we sink with it. We are becoming the poor, white, racist, trailer trash of Asia. Unfortunately the worse things become for us the louder and more shrill the xenophobes will become. It is hard to see it ending well.

    (By way of clarification, my heritage is Scottish, English, and Irish. I’m not ashamed nor proud of my heritage because I understand that race is a fiction.)

  42. Miriam English

    Dan, I’m not actually arguing about the “for” case. I don’t know who anybody voted for other than myself and my family. We’re long time Labor supporters, but have in recent elections been voting Greens because of the shameful regressive policy drift of Labor.

    Nobody in my family is anti-Labor. We’d all love to be able to go back to voting for Labor, but it just feels too dirty now. So little differentiates Labor from the LNP these days. You can see it in how they vote with the LNP so much of the time. You can see it in the promise to safeguard the Barrier Reef and then the quick roll over to the mining companies. It is horrifying.

  43. Dan Rowden

    re: Fedup,

    I’ll wait for confirmation from them before replying, because, racism aside, some of their points were plain silly anyway – with respect to population re-distribution and local/global environmental effects.

    On one hand you are saying immense pressure on our environment and the next you want to increase refugees. You can’t have it both ways.

    In fact, you can, but that can wait …

  44. Fedup

    Of course Lady Miriam English. The mouth of all knowledge. I am not ashamed of my heritage either which just happens to be German, English, Scottish and Welsh. So what! If you wish me to be branded a racist then so be it! Like I said, I say it as I see it! At least I am honest which is more than I can say from some of the comments here. You know mouth, some people put on an act just so they are not insulted by people like yourself. A lot of people hide behind masks also.

  45. diannaart

    Once again I arrive late to the party – so it goes…

    I would’ve answered John Kelly’s question; Climate Change.

    OK the continued widening of the rift that is inequality is of major importance. However, I don’t see why we have to do everything in such a linear fashion. I see action on climate change dove tailing very neatly with inequality.

    Sustainable technology, more small independent businesses, the decapitation of monopolies, manufacture localised… there is a plethora of literature available – available online not so much the MSM.

    http://careclimatechange.org/publications/cultivating-equality-report/

    To realise food and nutrition security for all in the face of climate change, CARE, CCAFS, and Food Tank make the following recommendations to governments, the private sector, donors, and individuals:

    Prioritise women’s empowerment and integrate climate change in all approaches to food and nutrition security;
    Ensure small-scale food producers and women have a seat at the table when policies and budgets are decided;
    Commit to ambitious action to tackle the climate crisis and keep global temperatures below 1.5 degrees Celsius;
    Commit to scaling up of finance to address hunger and climate change;
    Respect the rights of small-scale food producers and women and commit to equitable approaches in policies and supply chains;
    Know where your food comes from to make sustainable consumption choices.

    http://www.globalissues.org/article/231/climate-justice-and-equity

    For a number of years, there have been concerns that climate change negotiations will essentially ignore a key principle of climate change negotiation frameworks: the common but differentiated responsibilities. This recognizes that historically:

    Industrialized nations have emitted far more greenhouse gas emissions than developing nations (even if some developing nations are only now increasing theirs) enabling a cheaper path to industrialization;
    Rich countries therefore face the biggest responsibility and burden for action to address climate change; and
    Rich countries therefore must support developing nations adapt to avoid the polluting (i.e. easier and cheaper) path to development—through financing and technology transfer, for example.

    This notion of “climate justice” is typically ignored by many rich nations and their mainstream media, making it easy to blame China, India and other developing countries, or gain credence in the “false balancing” argument that if they must be subject to emission reductions then so must China and India. There may be a case for emerging nations to be subject to some reduction targets, but the burden of reductions must lie with industrialized countries.

    Here at the fifth estate we can stop using anachronistic ways of thinking and/or doing. We can solve problems expansively, collaboratively and tell the artificial construct that is the global market to go f^ck itself.

  46. Freethinker

    Fedup, I am not deaf, blind and bloody stupid, also I am not bigot racist.
    I can see that you have the same views about me that the rest of the bloggers here.
    What are you doing here? can you see that your moral values are on the opposite side of the contributors in this site.
    If it is going to educate you, then stay, you need a lot to learn but if it is to try to arrive to a common agreement in this isuue IMO your are wasting your time.
    Try sites like “It’s my country too” that perhaps you will feel at home.

  47. Fedup

    So I’m not wanted here because I have a different view to the rest of you and I am not entitled to have my say on things that matter to me in my country! Maybe you should be the one looking over my fence and then maybe you would see where I am coming from. Also Madam I am not a racist! I care about my country! I have as much right to be here as you and I have as much right to voice my opinion just as you do! Have a good day!

  48. Florence nee Fedup

    Why has such things as climate change become a left – right divide. hasn’t anything to do with ideology. Is just a scientific fact, that will affect lives of all. Truth is it was the likes of Thatcher that first raised concerns.

    Same is true for many other issues. With neoliberalism it seems to be them against all others. Only ones with entitlements. Doesn’t even respect the so called middle class. Doesn’t seem to be about people at all.

  49. Florence nee Fedup

    Miriam, nationally more so than race. Truth is there is more we share than what divides us. Culture is never static, always changing.

  50. Miriam English

    Florence, I think climate change has become a let-right thing largely because the biggest corporations are heavily invested in damaging the climate and are reluctant to change to fix that. It is understandable, but incredibly short-sighted. They’re backing themselves into a corner and will eventually be crushed by their own inaction. We can see this with the big coal companies. They could have diversified and got into, for example, wind power, but they didn’t. They doubled down on coal and have been going bankrupt one after another.

    I have to point out also, that climate change is not entirely left vs right. There are also some left-wing people, for example unionists in the coal or steel or power station industries, who are climate change deniers. Again, it is understandable. The ability of the human mind to deceive itself is not to be underestimated.

  51. Michael Taylor

    Fedup, we don’t really appreciate racist comments on this site, and you are delivering them in spades. And as a person of Middle Eastern origin, I find a number of your comments extremely offensive. I am appalled by them, as would most people here.

  52. Fedup

    No Michael. It’s just your interpretation of the comments. You have decided that everything I have said has to be racist, regardless of the truth of the matter. How easy is it to label someone a racist just because they don’t see things the same way as you! That’s your problem! Get over it. Like I said, I have as much right to comment here as you do! Have a good day sir!

  53. Miriam English

    Fedup, of course you’re a racist.

    racist
    adj 1: based on racial intolerance; “racist remarks”
    2: discriminatory especially on the basis of race or religion
    n : a person with a prejudiced belief that one race is superior
    to others

    And you’re homophobic too, though your repellent comment against gays was thankfully stopped.

    Why would you even bother to deny your racism? I’m always puzzled that racists so strongly insist that their opinions are not racist. I had a friend who once said “I’m not racist. It’s not my fault if Abos are stupid.” I couldn’t help laughing aloud at the absurdity of the statement. He at least had the good grace to be embarrassed.

    And in case anyone is tempted to think Aborigines are stupid, I’d pit any of them any day against an aboriginal guy who has been my friend since we were kids. He is the kindest, gentlest, sweetest, and one of the most perceptive people I know.

  54. Miriam English

    heheheh 😀 I got a good laugh out of “mouth of all knowledge” 🙂
    Oh, such a cutting remark! heheheh
    Thank you, Fedup, for brightening my afternoon. 🙂

  55. diannaart

    So good to see Bighead and cornlegend on the same page at the same time, not on the same thread, alas: https://theaimn.com/house-cards-2/#comment-476015

    Am wondering if Biggie loathes the greens even more than the LNP. I asked cornlegend, but he did not deign to reply.

  56. Fedup with morons

    I have just about had enough of you and you bleeding heart preaching Miriam. I am not a bloody Homophobic nor am I a racist. I am just sick to death of hearing, reading and listening to it all. Half the bloody election was based on this subject alone. I’m sure half of Australia backed the party who would do the first thing after the election on legalising SSM. I suggest you go and get a bloody life. Like I said if you wish to label me one then there is nothing I can do about that. I just see things differently than you obviously do. I truly feel sorry for hypocrites like yourself! Don’t bother replying, you might strain your brain!

  57. cornlegend

    diannaart
    I responded, just got home ,
    “So good to see Bighead and cornlegend on the same page at the same time, not on the same thread, alas: ”
    So?

  58. Fedup

    Now that I have had my fun and with you especially Miriam, here comes the punch line where I mentioned that I was from a German, English, Scottish and Welsh ancestry? Well I am also Aboriginal. Have a lovely day!

  59. Carol Taylor

    Fedup, and “Like I said, I have as much right to comment here as you do! Have a good day sir.”. Apart from the fact that Michael is the blog owner, which I suppose gives Michael the right to comment here as often as he likes. 🙂

  60. cornlegend

    OMG, So good to see diannaart and Jennifer Meyer Smith on the same page at the same time, not on the same thread,

  61. Freethinker

    Why every blog have to have “one” ?

  62. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    Now, now, now, cornlegend,

    don’t drag me into your petty, little spats. You know you’re wrong. 😛

  63. diannaart

    Hey Jennifer

    Have we ever made a link to the same article in minutes of each other?

    A 2 part question to which, I am sure the answer is no both times.

    Not so true for Biggie & Cornie – they are just soooo simpatico on their hatred of the Greens – so much hatred in fact, they have plenty to spare and dump on people who are not even members of the Greens.

    I’m not a Greens member and I have gathered from your posting history neither are you, Jennifer.

    All a bit obsessive and not a little strange when one considers we all need to counter the harm another 3 years of the LNP can cause.

    PS

    Apologies for the ‘drag-in’ perhaps if Cornie & Biggie actually learned from a persons posting history instead of seeing Greens everywhere…

  64. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    Next thing they’ll be crying is “there’s Greens under the beds!” 😀

  65. diannaart

    Beat me to it, Jennifer.

    Was waiting for another link to something really bad the Greens have done.

    😛

  66. ace Jones

    ATTN. Fedup – ” There is already talk in the Australian that ….. ”
    well if you put one iota of credence in the pig murdoch’s writings you are a lost, completely lost in a dream world just like the fella in the ‘The Truman Show’

  67. cornlegend

    Jennifer Meyer-Smith-diannaart
    Nah, We have really good security,and a decent barrier no Green within 1 km of the house .
    but, in case, I’ll set a couple of rat traps .

  68. Florence nee Fedup

    Cornlegend, first past post not best way to solve your problem. Maybe some type of multi MP electorate would be. Would only have to vote for I candidate.

    Fed up, you are wrong. No one is entitled to make comments here. All are guests. Up to owner to decide who they allow on. I find it a pleasure and honour to be able to.

    All one has to keep in mind that good manners, respect of other contributors is required.

  69. Florence nee Fedup

    Fed up, when it comes to migrants to this country, history especially since WWW2 has proven you wrong.

    I have watched each wave that has come since the great war. In fact have lived among them from day one. I have heard every comment you make with each wave. Heard the abuse, seen the cruelty, Matter not where they came from.

    I reared my kids in Guildford, lived in Cabramatta. Spent much time as a child at Matraville. All immigrations areas.

    You are wrong, because they changed our so called culture and economy for the better.

    Each wave gathered together in one or more suburbs. As they settled in, got their act together, moved into near and further out suburbs. Set up their own business, followed trades they are good at.

    They have melted into our society, our community. Takes a while but always happens.

    They create jobs.

  70. Miriam English

    Well said Florence. I don’t have the same direct experience you do because I grew up in the bush (though I did live for some years in Preston, Melbourne), however I have read the statistics on immigrants and jobs, and I was friends with a researcher who worked on this very topic. Immigrants create more jobs than they take up. They are net employment creators. Don’t listen to the bastard politicians who should know better. Australia has done very well out of immigration, especially from non-Anglo people.

    The only restrictions I’d hope to put on immigration are the hope that they don’t flock together into ghettos. It isn’t much of a problem so long as the existing population is welcoming, but when you have racists causing problems then ghettos become a focus for hate and are an easy way to exclude people. Immigrants need to be absorbed into society — not the Pauline Hanson way, where they’re forced to take on our culture and values, but to simply be spread through society so they can rub off on us and we on them. It is really hard to hate THEM if some of them are your friends. It’s really easy for us to hate them if we haven’t met them, they look different, and keep to themselves in a separate community.

    The other thing I’d hope is that people become more concentrated in the cities. The Australian bush is incredibly fragile. What little is left after the farmers cleared and devastated so much of the land is dangerously threatened and in great trouble. The rapid loss of wildlife is breathtaking. Every year I see numbers crashing everywhere. People don’t realise how much of our wildlife is speeding on its way to disappearing completely… forever. It is scary.

    And then you see some dickhead minister saying we’ll just make another dozen open-cut mines, and clearfell a vast space of forest. Don’t worry, they say, it’s only 7% of the wilderness. There’s plenty left. But you only have to do that 14 times and it’s all gone. You only have to do it less than half that and most species are exterminated because they need connected areas free from trucks racing along tracks and free from invasive pest species.

    Whew… sorry… end rant. 🙂

  71. Mim

    What is abundantly clear is that neither party is listening to the people and have abandoned even a pretense of governing for the people. Instead of representing the people and acting for the national good they are acting for vested interests.Our basic human rights, our working conditions, services and environment are all under attack. No where is this better epitomised than in Sydney at the moment. Here both State and Federal governments are proceeding with infrastructure projects that have been given less than optimum environmental assessment. Protests are ignored or overridden by changes to our laws.

    Sydney is located in a closed basin and already suffers from air pollution from the vehicle emissions. Yet instead of recognising this the powers that be continue with more toll roads instead of public transport. A giant incinerator at Eastern Creek is proposed without sufficient controls to ensure no adverse impacts. Then the proposed Western Sydney Airport will massively impact on the health and environment of all Sydney as well as the World Heritage Blue Mountains. Noise and air pollution will further increase the social inequity between east and west Sydney. No curfew for the West, no insulation, no noise mitigation, no cap or noise sharing all of which are enjoyed by eastern Sydney. Just constant flights at low altitude over 2 million people in residential growth areas and contaminants over water, vegetation, rainwater tanks, people and endangered species in the Blue Mountains.

    No the parties are not listening, public consultation is a farce and the adverse impacts on health will be enormous. There is a global movement of restlessness and dissatisfaction. Unless the parties get back to grass roots and start listening to the people the will be a revolution.

  72. Florence nee Fedup

    Miriam, this sounds queer but I also grew up on wheat/sheep farm other side West Wyalong, then dairy farm in the Yarramalong Valley. My father spent his life farming until his 60s. Had the only job in his life after that on Holroyd Council.

    We spent time in Sydney due to illness with mum, cleft palate and hare lip with me. Going home for holidays and months at a time.

    I think I was lucky. Seen life from both sides.

    I think it made me a person who liked to observe everything going on about me.

    I agree about the bush. Can still remember in fourth class looking at the erosion that was in the Social Studies book. It was what we saw all about us. Little has improved.

    Had couple years boarding school thrown in for luck.

  73. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    Oh-oh! cornlegend’s getting nasty again. 🙁

  74. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    Great insights Miriam, Mim and Florence. Thanks.

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