1 The forthcoming election is up for grabs. On the one hand the conservative parties are convinced that they can win based on what they believe to be the excellent job they have done with the pandemic. That is despite the states doing most of the work.
On the other hand, Labor has its policies and a bottomless basket full of conservative corruption and other activities to choose for an attack on the government’s legitimacy. If I were going into an election, I would much rather be in Labor leader Albanese’s shoes than the Prime Minister’s.
Let me remind you of a few of those activities.
Sports rorts, Robodebt, Federal ICAC, aged care deaths, land sales and now a follow up to sports rorts in bushfire rorts. Add to that list their opposition to an increase to Newstart, political donations and rental assistance and failing to follow up on the Uluru Statement.
They have been a do-nothing government of little accountability and endless corruption.
And might I add big business’s failure to return the JobKeeper money; the taxpayer’s money the government gave to companies to save jobs. And there was the Treasurer on Insiders last Sunday joyfully defending their right to pocket the taxpayer’s funds.
Belatedly the Prime Minister says it’s the politics of envy when you ask companies to give back job keeper money, which begs the question of Robodebt. What was it when the government pursued its false debt? Anyway, the Auditor General will investigate JobKeeper after it (was illegally used) to pay dividends and bonuses.
In a comment on my previous post for The AIMN the astute Kaye Lee noted that:
“He can ignore the debt and deficit and all other policy because…. pandemic.
But I don’t think he will be able to ignore, or deal with, climate change and energy policy. With the election of Biden, world scrutiny and demand for action is ramping up. They can’t con the international community with “meet and beat in a canter” crap. There is every chance that the EU and other countries who are making significant cuts to emissions will impose “carbon border adjustment charges”. Scotty is in trouble here.”
And how true that is.
Of course, every government has its share of scandals. Nothing new in that but this Coalition government has critically changed how we are governed. Acts of corruption, malfeasance, wrongdoing and impropriety are now weekly occurrences, not just unlucky slip-ups.
They are now so commonplace as to be an embarrassment. And worse is that most are ongoing open wounds in our democracy.
2 By the way, its Happy Birthday to Medicare. 37 on 1 February. Not perfect but nonetheless it has served us well. If the conditions were right, the conservatives would be rid of it in a flash.
3 I was reading the Michael West weekly email newsletter yesterday. One of his authors (Lyndsay Connors) points out that:
“Since Scott Morrison became prime minister in 2018, the Coalition has poured an extra $4.6 billion over a decade into Catholic and independent schools.
“Productivity Commission figures released this week show government funding for non-government schools continues to grow faster than for public schools. Judging by statements the new federal Education Minister Alan Tudge made to Parliament, inequality will deepen.”
4 The new QandA timeslot will hopefully bring a broader audience to the panel discussion show. Last night’s panel – apart from Alexander Downer who appears to be remote from ordinary people – was excellent.
5 Now we have Bushfire Rorts. How long is it going to last? Have you ever applied for a grant? It is almost as if they don’t want you to get it.
6 One would have to think that Craig Kelly has something on the Prime Minister. If not, how does he get away with all the crap he serves up.
The Hughes group against Kelly hopes to field an independent in the seat to challenge him in the next election.
7 The government is serving up a very meagre policy agenda for 2021, as reported in The Guardian:
“The Morrison government has nominated waste policy, climate adaptation and reform of national conservation laws as its environmental priorities for 2021, prompting criticism that it is not focused enough on improving the plight of the country’s declining wildlife and threatened species.”
Note: Not a mention of the 38 recommendations made by the former competition watchdog head, Graeme Samuel, in a review of the EPBC Act released last week.
8 Albanese has his party no more than a point behind the Coalition, according to this week’s Newspoll 50/50 poll, at level pegging. The Guardian’s latest Essential Poll has Labor ahead 47 to 44, with the rest undecided.
9 The abuse of Albanese of the last few weeks has led me to this: Having supported Labor for all of my 80 years l am now of the view that my party isn’t much interested in winning government.
10 Total political donations for 2020:
“… are $168m, way down on the $434m in the previous year 2018/19. The Liberal Party edged out Labor as the top recipient. Total donations for Liberal Party are $57m, Labor $55m, Nationals $12.4m, Clive Palmer $10.2m, Greens $7.2m and One Nation $5.8m.”
My thought for the day
I feel people on the right of politics in Australia show an insensitivity to the common good that goes beyond any thoughtful examination. They have a hate on their lips, and their hate starts with the beginning of a smile.
PS: Might I remind my friends that it is they who we are fighting, not ourselves?
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