One step away from total fascism (part 2)

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“So Oskar Was Guilty Of Genocide: He Regrets It Now… “

As Oskar said, “Just because I was a commandant commander doesn’t mean I liked following orders and I deeply regret everything now that the Allies have won the war. I’d say sorry but, hey, the people I should say sorry to are dead, so what can you do?”

Before we continue, I have to say something about preferential voting because so many in the media have made so much of Labor’s so-called Teal low first preference vote…

Whoops, that Teal shouldn’t be there. Somehow the word Teal just slips itself in after the words, “so-called”… Must be something to do with autocorrect because it happened so often in the mainstream media…

Anyway, the narrative around Labor’s so-called low first preferences goes something like this: Political journalists tell us that there’s no way Labor can win with first preferences below forty percent. Labor get less than forty percent first preferences, so therefore they mustn’t have won and so we need to explain exactly why Labor didn’t win.

Preferential voting is a strange beast that people don’t always appreciate. Let me imagine that voting is like a restaurant menu. It’s a standard $75 for three courses, so you and your friends all look at the options for each course.

There are four options for the main:

  1. Peking Duck
  2. Vegetarian Surprise
  3. Eye Fillet Steak
  4. Chicken Kyiv

You all place your order and one of your friends has ordered the duck, but after a few moments, the waiter comes back and says that the duck is off the menu. They say that’s ok and they’ll have the chicken. The waiter then explains that once you’ve put in your preference, if it’s taken off the menu, you don’t get anything.

The restaurant analogy breaks down a bit because voting for the government means that everybody in the same electorate ends up with the same dish, but the basic idea holds. What would you prefer if you can’t get your first preference?

Under a simple majority or first past the post system, there’s a very real chance that all the vegetarians would vote for option two and, if thirty percent of people were vegetarian and the meat-eaters were evenly split, we’d all end up Vegetarian Surprise. While I now have all the vegetarians wondering what’s wrong with that, the fact is that it may well be that under preferential voting we’d have all ended up with the chicken and everyone but the vegetarians would be happier than with option 2. Of course, there is the possibility that – even under simple majority voting – the vegetarians wouldn’t be happy because they’ve discovered that the surprise is that it contains fish, which the chef didn’t consider meat.

Whatever, preferential voting works to ensure that we don’t get a result that most people aren’t happy with. Of course, the way one feels about the other candidates may be the equivalent of the vegetarians who are doomed to be out-voted most times. (I probably should add here that I’m not discounting the possibility that with greater awareness we might end up with the majority being vegetarians… in which case, the whole menu should probably change because the idea of one vegetarian option is silly enough at the moment but in a world where the majority don’t eat meat it’s a one-way ticket to oblivion.)

And speaking of oblivion, how about Thé Libéral Party?

In a more sensible world, the left of the Liberal Party and the right of the Labor Party should form a new party and call itself the Sensible Centre-Right Party, while the Left of The Labor Party should join with the Right of The Greens and call themselves the Sensible Centre Slightly Left But Not Too Much Party and the left of The Greens should join the right of the Liberal and National Part and call itself The Broad Church Party Even Though Some Of Us Are Atheists Party. While that final group wouldn’t have much in common, it would be no worse than having some of the Nationals in the same party as anyone liable to form government, and at least if they ever manage to develop an actual party policy, we’d know it had a broad consensus everywhere. It certainly would be no more absurd than Stan Grant’s idea that the teal independent supporters and Trump supporters were very similar: Sure, they disagreed on almost everything but they were alike in the sense that they both didn’t like something, so the psychology was basically the same.

Instead of my eminently reasonable suggestion, I suspect that the parties will continue much as they are and even though the Nationals may argue that their leader should be given the title of Leader of The Opposition on the grounds that they got more seats than the Liberals, or at least they didn’t lose as many, we’ll have He Who Must Not Be Blamed as Opposition Leader.

Yes, there’s a lot being written about Peter Dutton these days and it falls into two camps. Those who are comparing him to a Nazi, which is slightly unfair… To Peter Dutton I should add, in case there’s any confusion… Just because he boycotted the apology to the stolen generation doesn’t mean that he’s the sort of man who’d boycott an apology to the stolen generation.

No, as Stuart Robert told us, it’s terrible to judge poor Peter on the things he’s done and said because well, that would be like blaming the Liberals for their record in government, which was really good and people just didn’t realise that the cost of living was going up because we have no idea how to stop it.

The other camp is the media who are arguing that we should give Dutton a go.. possibly because he’s having a go, or has that concept gone now? Apparently, he has “the outlook of Queensland cop” which makes me wonder how all Queensland cops came to have the same outlook…

The media has certainly come in for a bit of stick but they have responded by taking that criticism on board and telling people that Twitter is the only place that criticises them and it’s all full of left-wing haters, which makes me want to say to the next right-wing troll who comments on Twitter, “Piss off, we’re full!” While some on the left have written horrible things which I can’t repeat, others have written even worse things like: “How about you stop interrupting Albo before he’s drifted away from the question and do your job?” This is worse. because there’s nothing worse than criticism when it’s true.

Still, the media have taken on board one thing. Throughout the campaign, we were told that we didn’t know who Albanese was, even though he’s one of the longest-serving politicians who held a number of portfolios and spent some time in the position of Deputy PM. They must have done some soul-searching and realised that they couldn’t let that happen again, so there are lots of pieces on the new opposition leader, even before he’s elected, and they all seem to be telling us that the man we thought we knew is just a creature of fiction… No, not the one from the Harry Potter series because that’s making fun of his appearance and he can’t help that. No, not the Peter Dutton that intervened against department advice to allow a couple of au pair girls to enter the country now wants to be assured that the government is following department advice by letting a family with Australian born children stay here. I mean, imagine how the flood gates will be opened if all people have to do to get to stay is find another refugee to marry, have kids, make lots of friends in their local community, get dragged out of bed in the middle of the night, spend years in detention, have a child get dangerously ill and live in constant fear of being sent back to a homeland that one felt was more dangerous than spending time on a leaky boat to get to Australia.

Later, I’ll be writing a piece about Labor’s failure to address the deficit.


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  1. Keitha Granville

    I love the Bingo game, def going to have a go at that next time I’m near anyone who voted Liberal, not that they’ll ever fess up !

  2. Canguro

    Three anecdotal experiences with Queensland cops…

    (1) Pulled over and quizzed just because I was driving a car with interstate plates… no other reason given.

    (2) Pulled over (as a passenger along with three others) by a drunken cop driving dangerously in western Qld, who confiscated the cartons of beer and bottle of rum, and drove off.

    (3) Sitting on the steps of a western Qld pub after being evicted for being underage; watched as two cops, in uniform, brought their six-packs out to the marked police car; Cop A tossed his six pack onto the passenger’s seat through the open window, Cop B the same, sounds of bottles smashing, cops swearing, then Cops A & B sweeping broken glass into the gutter, totally ignoring the presence of the onlooker only metres away.

    Admittedly, a long time ago. I expect things have improved somewhat.

  3. Caz

    A taxi driver who was picking up his own car after a late shift, discovered he had paperwork that should have been left in the cab. He was pulled up 2am for driving down the same street twice by two overbearing coppers. When they couldn’t book him for that they booked him for a cracked windscreen which did not affect the driver’s side or his ability to see clearly.

  4. totaram

    Kaye Lee: AAA rating in jeopardy!! Terrible! What will we do?? What will happen??Do you know? Does anyone know?
    As Bill Mitchell or any MMT economist will tell you: nothing will happen. These ratings are supposed to determine what happens to your country’s sovereign bonds. But that is dependent entirely on the central bank of your country as everyone should have understood by now. You only have to note the “huge” government debt while the RBA was able to hold the interest rates at the lowest level in decades (check the details – I don’t care). According to the “mainstream” economist’s views, interest rates should have been though the roof. It didn’t happen. Interest rates are rising now, only because of rising inflation. It is only because the RBA decides to raise them to dampen inflation. There is no connection to the “government debt”.

    I will stop there. I know it is very difficult to argue these issues in a few paragraphs. People have written whole books and got nowhere. Who am I?

  5. New England Cocky

    @ Canguru: You have overlooked his sterling efforts while a member of the Queensland Police Aboriginal Abuse Unit i which he ”abducted” a number of Aboriginal teenagers, drove the to a distant location and turfed them out of the police car, to find their own way home across Brisbane.

    Something about ”retiring” before being sacked by the Commissioner for the above efforts. Obviously the Commissioner was a leftie sweet touch.

  6. Kaye Lee


    I only posted the headline because of how ridiculous it is…..for many reasons.

  7. wam

    You may have missed an observation when scrutineering, Rossleigh.
    In 3 corner contests, like macnamara, the factors are ballot position worth an extra few hundred and the third spot. Someone in the AEC may have made a mistake and let the public see the allocation of preferences. Then AEC secrecy kicked in and removed our access. Without the ability to see which is favoured we can but consider, ‘the exgov’ cannot win so unless the extremists get past the greens into second spot, most unlikely, the greens will win.

  8. B Sullivan

    “What would you prefer if you can’t get your first preference?

    ” A box to tick on the ballot paper that says, “no other preference”. Just to make it clear when you are not prepared to endorse candidates that do not represent your political interests. Politicians need to know that winning government under involuntary preferential voting does not mean that they have the support of a democratic majority.

    Better still I’d prefer proportional representation, so that everyone is fairly and equally represented, no matter who or where they live.

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