Breaching Human Rights: Australia, Climate Change and the…

Australia has a mixed relationship with the United Nations Human Rights Committee. …

So Now It's Wrong To Be Racist, Eh?

Just a few short years ago, Attorney-General George Brandis assured us that…

“I'm Sorry, Your Majesty...”

A Tribute to our Late Queen Liz, with Post-Colonial Afterthoughts By Loz Lawrey…

More of the same

1 Here are a few jaw-droppers that are guaranteed to shock you. They…

Shoddy Consultations: Santos, Drilling and First Nations Peoples

Federal Court Justice Mordecai Bromberg has been in the environmental news again,…

Can we avoid mass extinction?

We only have one planet! And we each have only one life! The…

Whither Constitutional Change?

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

Offence by Another Name: Suppressing Anti-Royal Protest in…

The right to protest, fragile and meekly protected by the judiciary in…

«
»
Facebook

They missed it… again!

Today Bill Shorten laid out his economic plan for the next 10 years. I’m sure you can guess how political journalists reacted?

Did they report that finally a leader is looking ahead further than the next election? Nope.

Did they explain the vision Shorten outlined to invest in the economy for the benefit of future growth? Nope.

Or, did they simplify the economic plan down to a competition about who will get to surplus quicker, whilst not actually listening to what Shorten said, and proved yet again they are incapable of any analysis above ‘debt and deficit bad, nothing else matters, this is two horse race, it may as well be a football game with the surplus as the winning margin’ bullshit that we get served up every time a political leader opens their mouth to talk about economics, whilst criticising this plan for not including budget figures when it’s clearly not a budget, any 5 year old can see that? Yep. This is what they did.

I was listening. One statement stood out most to me and had me high-fiving the nearest person, doing a little happy dance and replaying it back a few times to get the words down to share with all of you. In case you missed it. This was the best bit:

Equality of opportunity is always good economics…A stronger economy and a fairer society. Labor’s never signed up to the false choice between growth on one hand and fairness on the other. We know that growth and fairness are not enemies nor strangers. Each depends on the other. Each reinforces the other. Fairness is not a dividend of prosperity. It is a foundation for sustainable growth.

This is the biggest idea in politics at the moment and the media completely missed it. This is what Bernie Sanders is fighting for, this is what world-famous and respected economists Thomas Piketty and Joseph Stiglitz have been talking about for years and now even the IMF and the World Bank are on board. Here we are, in little old Australia, with a political leader who gets it, and is running with it, and is advocating this as the best way forward and the Australian media JUST DON’T GET IT! Inequality is bad for the economy. Anything the government does to reduce inequality is good for the economy. Investment in education, in health, in childcare, in infrastructure, in anything that reduces inequality, IS GOOD FOR ALL OF US! A fairer society is a better economy.

While the Liberals continue to claim corporate tax cuts will trickle-down to create economic growth, and political journalists keep refusing to look at the reality of this situation, which has been comprehensively proven to be a complete and utter con, whilst also not recognising that Labor is offering something very different, they fail all of us. They continue to fail all of us.

Tonight on ABC’s 730, Turnbull said the prosperity of Australians relies on the prosperity of the business they work for. There I am, in my living room, screaming ‘tell him that is wrong Sales! Tell him the prosperity of businesses relies on the prosperity of Australian consumers!’ Alas, yet again, the opportunity was missed. Because they don’t get it.

 388 total views,  2 views today

87 comments

Login here Register here
  1. Don A Kelly

    If the governments fiscal position must remain in deficit to achieve a ‘Fairer Society’ then so be it. That is what Modern Monetary Economists call a “Good Deficit”. The governments fiscal position must be viewed as a result of what they are trying to achieve.

  2. Sir ScotchMistery

    I am still gob-smacked that we expect anything of the Murdoch-typists and bolts of the MSM.

    What have they done with their last bunch of years to justify our interest?

    Nothing.

  3. Glenn K

    and Malcolm said “I have a plan” and “jobs and growth” in his first sentence on 7:30, Leigh never really challenged him on that. My biggest job threat is not the minimal tax my multinational employer pays (less that $20m on over $1b of sales in Australia), but the ongoing outsourcing of jobs to fellow employees living in India and China.

  4. kathysutherland2013

    I think Labor should emphasise,at every opportunity, the strong connection between a fair society and a strong economy. Good slogan that!

  5. Arthur Plottier

    I did not watched 7 30. Chances are that if I watch it I will throw a boot to the screen, i cannot afford a new TV.
    Instead I watched Bill, he was calm and gave the correct answers. The moderator asked each of the persons that put a question to Bill if they were satisfied with the reply and they said yes.
    Bill Shorten is a leader not a pastor like Malcolm or parrot like Mathias and Morrison.

  6. Phil

    well said Victoria. BUT after reading todays blog from John Menadue – Pearls and Irritations:
    (http://johnmenadue.com/blog/?p=6702) I see the scam the liberals are running.

    Jobs? Yes, but for who? Foreign workers on subclass 400 visas – paid poverty wages, no superannuation, no workers comp, no sick pay, no holidays, wages paid direct to accounts in China. This is the secret ‘legal’ trade deal that Andrew Robb signed Australia up to before he shot through – and its the return by stealth of WorkChoices.

    Growth? Yes, but for who? For Chinese government quasi-corporate business interests. The secret China Free Trade Agreement that Robb signed us to is a blue print for WorkChoices and the Liberals are salivating over it.

    Organised Australian workers are on the nose with Turnbull, Morrison, Corman et al – literally – they hate us – organised working Australians stand in the way to achieving their ideological plan to gut and emasculate the Australian workforce, why? because of their visceral hatred and fear of organised labour, be it the Teachers union, CFMEU, or any and every other workers union. Driving this is the IPA and Westacott’s BCA agenda and Turnbull is their latest Trojan Horse – all smiles and hand waving platitudes whilst emasculating Australian families, gutting their rights to represent their class though self organisation.

    Jobs and growth !!!

  7. etnorb

    Well, as we ALL know, one can NEVER trust anything the Mudrake press prints! Typical, of course, that they all jumped on the inept, lying liberal bandwagon! Jobson Growth must be exhausted by now, I know I am exhausted because this is all any of these conservative fluckwits seem to be able to say! Keep getting “stronger” with all your policies & programs Labor, you may just knock these incompetents for six!

  8. Trish Corry

    Yes Victoria, I agree. I listened to the live economic announcement today and I am catching up on the people’s forum right at this minute.
    What I find exciting about Shorten’s economic announcement, is that the has reset the economic agenda that the Liberals and Murdoch have set for years now. My one criticism of Gillard is she appeared to allow Abbott to set the agenda on the economy. As you have said, the media missed the entire point. However, the great thing about what Shorten has done, is that he has taken the first step away of allowing the media controlling the debate and the liberals controlling the debate, because he has set the agenda for his response. The media will do one of two things. Keep pushing the existing agenda, or they will re-set it upon review of the public response to this. It will be an interesting one to watch play out.

  9. Matters Not

    Equality of opportunity is always good economics. … A stronger economy and a fairer society.

    Not sure about that. Over the last century or so, the best performing economy in the world has been the US economy and during that period ‘inequality’ in that country has accelerated at an increasing and alarming rate. And continues to so do. As it has across the world.

    But perhaps you are confusing the ‘is’ with the ‘ought’.

    Or maybe, this is just about party political propaganda and not serious intellectual discussion. (Not that there’s anything wrong with that … But at only one level.)

    A quick look at the historical record would reveal that there were any number of people who became very rich out of the slave record.

    The concepts of ‘equality’ and economics really don’t fit.

  10. Brad Adams

    I’m bloody upset that NOBODY ever questions this bogus figure of “we have created 300,000 NEW jobs”. It’s rubbish! Every time somebody CHANGES a job they have to submit a new Tax Declaration and THAT’S what the ABS figures reflect. People CHANGING jobs. Two things stand out in the ABS figures which I pulled up on Google in a few seconds. There has been a steady rise in Part Time jobs but a fall in Full Time jobs over the same period. The ABS states exactly what is also shown in the figures:

    “The trend in part-time employment growth continued from March into April, with the 10,500 increase in part-time employment being the eleventh consecutive monthly increase of more than 10,000 persons. In contrast, trend full-time employment decreased by 6,400 persons, its third consecutive monthly decrease,” General Manager of ABS’ Macroeconomic Statistics Division, Bruce Hockman said.

    This is reflected in the trend monthly hours worked in all jobs series, which decreased by 5.6 million hours (0.3 per cent) to 1,628.9 million hours. This was the fourth consecutive decrease in hours worked in all jobs, which reflects a combined decrease of 16.2 million hours (1.0%) from the high point at December 2015.

    A net DECREASE in hours worked across the country mean less money going into the pockets of workers and less money being spent. No economy can grow with figures like that and it also means job security is in the toilet.

  11. RichardU

    And they wonder why attention is moving to social media!

  12. Garth

    @Phil, good comment. Don’t you love it that in the neocon world how organised workers = bad, (& means inevitable corruption) , but organised business (eg. The BCA) = good.
    i’m absolutely gobsmacked at the hubris of this government to argue against the need for a banking RC as they say ASIC can handle any wrong doing. This is after they just received the report 6 months ago for their RC witch-hunt into unions (Cormann even had the hide to say today that the accusations from ASIC re NAB rate rigging are from 2010-2012 so no big deal, it’s in the past – when his party, and the TURC demanded Julia Gillard explain herself from 20 years ago).
    I’m getting so angry with the Australian MSM for not reporting on this absolute hypocrisy. We all know why they don’t but it doesn’t calm the anger, makes it worse actually …. either journalists work for Rupert and are locked into propagating his world view, or, they think they may one day might need a job from uncle rupie so, can’t burn that bridge – even if it betrays why they became a journalist in the first place.
    I’ve even lost faith in the bulk of the Guardian commentary. Katharine Murphy, not satisfied with showing an increasing bias in her Politics Live blog (IMO), thinks it’s also good to insult and berate the readers that take the time to engage with her work.
    I’m ready to put on a blindfold and earmuffs till I vote on July 2. I’m over it!

  13. Macbeth

    This has been my beef for years. Silly, lazy journalists who cannot go beyond the superficial. They are a disgrace. No sensible analysis; no deep understanding of the issues and thus they let Turnbull off the hook all the time. Thankfully fewer people rely on the mainstream media.

  14. Change the Conversation

    Unfortunately both the LNP & ALP are following the neo-liberal ideology…. deficits are not all bad… this continued push towards a surplus is…

    You have got to read this.
    Bill Shorten, Chris Bowen, Richard di Natale, and for that matter virtually all you so-called left of centre pundits in Australia, Ellis has something to share with you.

    Ellis Winningham
    June 5 at 12:10am ·
    The Left is the Walking Dead

    The left is still alive and kicking. We know this empirically, because we can hear them speaking. However, when they do speak, to the ears of a heterodox economist they sound like zombies. I’ll give you an example.

    Interviewer: “What then are the issues facing the left today?”

    The Left: “Transnational uuuuuuggh. Globalism uuuuuuugh uuuuuuugh uuuuuuugh solve tax evasion uuuuuuugh uuuuuuugh uuuuuuugh uuuuuuugh we need to collect uuuuuuugh taxes to pay for vital public uuuuuuugh uuuuuuugh uuuuuuugh uuuuuuugh uuuuuuugh uuuuuuugh uuuuuuugh uuuuuuugh uuuuuuugh uuuuuuugh global solidarity against uuuuuuugh uuuuuuugh uuuuuuugh – Solidarity! Solidarity!”

    The left today believes that the problem is transnational corporations and they are something that individual nations are powerless to stop, because all money comes from transnational corporations. Without taxing away some of the money that these corporations create, the left cannot afford to pay for vital social spending. Therefore, in order to counter globalism, the left must develop an international strategy to fight back.

    Behold! The mindset of the walking dead. In recent years, horror writers turned to the concept of a virus as the culprit for causing the condition of “undeadness”, such as vampirism and zombies. When it comes to economics, that virus is neoliberalism.

    Neoliberalism is a virus that deludes its victims into believing free market nonsense. It spreads rapidly throughout any nation, infecting the mind, gradually deteriorating its victim’s ability to think clearly and to reason. In later stages of the disease, the victim begins to babble nonsensical statements, such as:

    1. Deficits are dangerous

    2. The government prints money

    3. Federal taxes fund federal spending

    4. We must find cuts to pay for that

    5. The US, UK and Australian governments can go bankrupt

    6. The US, UK and Australian governments borrow to fund spending

    7. The national debt is a real debt

    8. We need to tax the rich to pay for public spending

    9. QE can cause hyperinflation

    10. Credit ratings of the governments of the US, UK and Australia matter

    The left is not immune to the neoliberalism virus. True, in principle the left stands diametrically opposed to free market thinking. Yet, here we clearly see a left that believes private entities issue currency and that taxation collected by national governments such as the US, UK, Australia et al., pays for national government spending.

    So, indeed, the left has fallen victim to neoliberalism and now believes in macroeconomic fantasy, much like any fiscal conservative. “uuuuuuugh uuuuuuugh dollars are scarce uuuuuuugh uuuuuuugh…” The only difference between the left and right is the use of the scarce supply of money available to national governments. In truth, both sides are the walking dead, but surely one would expect more from the left, as it so often claims that reason over mysticism is the best policy. Yet here, the left has no ability to reason. It is unwittingly caught up in macroeconomic nonsense peddled by the very people the left opposes.

    Neoliberalism is a powerful virus. Certainly it has affected both Bernie Sanders in the US and John McDonnell in the UK to such an extent that they believe themselves to be Robin Hood and any friends on the left are their “merry men”. Sanders is a bit disappointing in this regard, because he is surrounded by people immune to the neoliberalism virus and who know what they are talking about.

    Fortunately, there is a simple cure: listening to reason and it falls upon the victims to help themselves. We begin by explaining to the left that:

    1. Bretton-Woods is dead and gone. There is no gold standard.

    2. The governments of the US, UK and Australia are sovereign currency-issuing governments.

    3. The US Dollar, British Pound and Australian Dollar are free-floating, non-convertible fiat currencies.

    4. The supply of currency available to the US, UK and Australian governments is always equal to infinity.

    5. The governments of the US, UK and Australia can afford to buy whatever is available for sale in their respective currencies.

    6. The governments of the US, UK and Australia do not tax to fund their spending.

    7. The governments of the US, UK and Australia do not borrow from China nor any other nation to fund their spending.

    8. Greece is a user of currency, not an issuer and as such, must tax and borrow to spend and it can go broke.

    9. There are three main sectors to an economy: Government, Domestic Private and External. The condition of the external sector is important when considering whether or not a government surplus is appropriate.

    10. All spending by the governments of the US, UK and Australia is paid for when these respective governments authorize spending.

    What then does this teach the left if it is only willing to listen to reason? Quite a lot really, but most importantly:

    1. Deficits are not intrinsically bad. Deficits too high can become inflationary and deficits too low result in unemployment. The left needs to come to terms with that.

    2. Taxation by national governments does not fund any national government spending. Therefore, we do not need to tax corporations before we can modernize infrastructure, have universal healthcare, provide free college educations, maintain full employment by initiating a job guarantee where all who are willing and able to work can find work and fully fund all vital social programs. To do these things, it is no more difficult a task than having the national governments authorize the spending. The left desperately needs to come to terms with this reality.

    3. Transnational corporations are never more powerful than a single national government that issues a sovereign currency. At any point in time, that national government need only to assert its currency-issuing and regulatory authority to effectively bring any destructive private entities into submission.

    4. Business and the rich aren’t necessarily the enemy. Neoliberalism is the enemy.

    A willingness to listen to reason, to understand the monetary system and fearlessly assert itself in public from the standpoint of macroeconomic reality will cure the left. Immune to neoliberalism, the left would become a stronghold of sanctuary for the victims of neoliberalism world-wide and a real force of change for the better.

  15. Oscar

    Lea Sales didn’t really ask a hard question of Turnball.She’s looking for longevity a bit like that other nong Anabelle Crabb.
    Why won’t Turnball have another debate? Because he’s a dud.Turnball’s precious relationship with his father sounds like that old cartoon Augie Doggy and Doggie Daddy.
    Turnball is so out of touch with working class people regardless of his upbringing. It’s who, he’s has become that matters.
    When Turnball answers a question; it’s like he has an out of body experience where you can see his thought bubble say; “Gee what bullshit can I shell out now”. “Ok! ill give em this shit”. He is so disingenuous. I want to throttle him. Jobs and Growth. What a joke.
    Who would trust these jokers. They’re the ones who have tripled the deficit.What did Howard do whilst in power? Nothing!!! With his surplus he could put made sure all the railway crossings were removed across Australia.And improve public transport in all capital cites. Build bridges. Instead Howard sold our gold off and gave our money to big business.
    The Liberal party are a bunch of incompetent vision-less corrupt crooks.They’re Ideology is just the same as the Nazi’s and just as stupid.

  16. Wun Farlung

    Australian media JUST DON’T GET IT!
    I beg to differ Victoria. There is always a few incompetents and airheads in every trade/vocation. Australian media is like the rest of the workers, concerned about being able to pay bloated mortgages and paying for the day to day expenses that are ridiculously expensive. The journos of the MSM know exactly what they are doing… Toeing the line

  17. Sir ScotchMistery

    We still face the initial problem of overseas job creation systems driven by Australian business and followed closely by Australian Tax Office.

    400 jobs at the ATO have been off-shored to India.

    That is a privacy issue. Our medical records can’t be kept in America, but our tax records can be accssed by dirt-floor dwellers in Mumbai.

    I don’t understand why people don’t give a stuff about that. Am I too old? Have I missed something?

    No I haven’t. Australia as a voting population don’t care.

    That’s screwed.

  18. helvityni

    Leigh might not have asked the hard questions, but even so, Mal’s smiles disappeared pretty soon and he seemed to to shrink before my eyes. He was not happy with the interview, seemed to have lost his confidence.

  19. Wun Farlung

    If last night’s 730 interview was broadcast to all channels, Mal would have blown the election
    He was pathetic.
    I detected frustration of someone trying to defend something that they know isn’t true

  20. lawrencewinder

    Sales’ interview was pathetic… she’s more concerned with her own media standing than asking incisive questions… it was so boring that I bailed out 2/3 of the way through…All we can now do is wait for the “interview” with Willie Shortstuff where Sales will interrupt and cut across if the answer looks like being cogent but doesn’t suits Sale’s right-wing agenda….The ABC “journo’s,” possibly with the exception of Alberici, are really running soft on the Liarbrils and always have a “yes,but” about anything Labor that is positive….I fear that this is the last election before the dictatorship.

  21. helvityni

    And now ABC has the cute Annabel writing about budgets on the Drum; the Drum(TV) yesterday was again ‘leaning’ towards the Liberals…
    The less I see of Uhlmann, the better I feel…

  22. Oscar

    I think Annabel Crabb is The Village Idiot of Canberra.

  23. jantonius

    lawrencewinder,
    This is the dictatorship.

  24. Wun Farlung

    Oscar you are insulting village idiots everywhere by lifting Crabb up to that level

  25. Carol Taylor

    Off topic, but an example of how the msm spin. This is a quote from The Australian who are clearly out to try to ‘get’ Xenophon: “Nick Xenophon appears to have been caught out denying he or his family had unwittingly become slumlords”. I ask, how can you be “caught out” when an action has been done “unwittingly”? Mind you, there are no specifics, it is EITHER Xenophon OR his family..ya’ know, one of ’em..

  26. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    Hear, hear Change the Conversation.

    However, why frame it as a statement against the Left? There’s ignorance on both sides of the political divide and arguably more cynically from the Right.

    If you want to win hearts and minds, take the arrogance out of the language because the very people who want to agree with you are also the ones you’re kicking.

    Keep the edginess insofar as to capture the attention of the leadership and apparatchiks of Labor and the Greens so that they may have a crash course in how to fight filthy neoliberalism, which is everybody’s enemy. Then we won’t all be wanting to throw bricks at our televisions when we hear Shorten, Bowen or Di Natale speaking much sense except when they feel obliged to say we will return to surplus sometime soonish.

    Please in your very nicest voice, advocate to these leaders that our sovereign currency can act as a lubricant to providing FULL employment for now because government can fund projects and services to inject our socio-economic system with energy that is good for us all and the environment with the rise of renewable energy industries.

  27. jimhaz

    @ MN
    [Not sure about that. Over the last century or so, the best performing economy in the world has been the US economy and during that period ‘inequality’ in that country has accelerated at an increasing and alarming rate. And continues to so do. As it has across the world]

    In 1980 as an example the US top tax rate was 70c. Distribution of that nature creates equality opportunities.

    http://taxfoundation.org/article/us-federal-individual-income-tax-rates-history-1913-2013-nominal-and-inflation-adjusted-brackets
    The US has also benefited from a lack of the non-equality involved in rule by royals and from multiculturalism when it counted most a century ago – this made it easier for them to sell to the world and establish their multinationals.

    [‘inequality’ in that country has accelerated at an increasing and alarming rate]

    It hasn’t really. Depends on how one looks at it. As a percentage of the population fewer are starving or homeless than a century ago. The base level of measurement has changed – before inequality meant insolvable starvation and homelessness, and now if you suffer those problems it is more likely to be a result of your own issues.

    Much US wealth comes from their globalised companies, and with increased globalisation so one could expect that the top earners would sky rocket ahead. There were similar dudes like the Rockefellers who owned a million times more than the average worker.

    There has been a decline in equality since the 90’s, due partly to the fall in top tax rates, but also because growth has been based on debt. For 15 years average real wages have not increased for most workers.

    http://www.pewresearch.org/fact-tank/2014/10/09/for-most-workers-real-wages-have-barely-budged-for-decades/

    So IMO distribution fairness via taxation measures leads to equality of opportunity, which then leads to greater economic opportunities. Consumption increases and this drives business growth substantially.

  28. Oscar

    Wun Farlung: Unfortunately it is very sad we have so called journo’s like her; given so much kudos.Wanting to be liked by everyone makes bad journalism. I miss Sarah Ferguson hosting 7.30.

  29. Jack Russell

    Labor know what needs to be done to put this country on its feet again – you can hear the key words if you listen for them.

    They also know that there are another four weeks of surviving the lethal neo-conservative mine-field designed to stop them – because the LNP know they’re finished if Labor wins this election.

  30. helvityni

    Yes, Oscar, Sarah is truly professional, there are no flirty smiles or angry faces from her.

  31. Rob G

    My thoughts exactly. I find the lack of media scrutiny appalling. Here we have an opposition prepared to put brave policy out there, have a conversation on inequality, and at long last provide a real alternative to the way we do government. This sort of bravery is a very rare thing indeed, and the media need to recognise it before we lose it. There are two real options here, one is tired and still tied to corporate trickle down theories – the other is looking like it could just see Australia go in a direction it ultimately needs to. Bravery is something we had been yearning for in politics – we hope MT was going to sort out the right wingers in the party and stand up for things that matter – what we got was just disappointment and empty rhetoric. Shorten can fulfil that role if given the chance.

    I’d like to think voters can see passed one-eyed journalism, I think they can even with many disengaged at the moment. Conventional channels (TV, Press, brochure….) are no longer the big players – Labor get that.

  32. Backyard Bob

    Here we have an opposition

    There you have your explanation. Oppositions never get a coverage of substance. Abbott knew this and therefore offered no substance save that of slogans, which is perfect media fodder for an Opposition.

  33. Oscar

    helvityni : I hadn’t noticed about the flirt.It’s another thing we men miss sometimes. Thank you

  34. Michael Taylor

    You’re right about that, ByB. It certainly worked for Abbott, but in doing so he lowered the bar of expectations.

  35. Happy___Annie

    I loved the interview with Leigh Sales and Turnbull. It was the most amazing thing to watch.
    The question, “what does your big policy, of 50 billion in tax cuts to companies do to help a middle income family?”…
    oh the agony, the slow slow waffle… not one single real thing that could help a family…not one.
    He umms and erred… but not one single thing that would make a positive difference to a real families life.
    Nothing to promote good schools, or hospitals or adequate pensions for our elderly…

    Still he didn’t get what he was doing, and on he continued about how “everyone knows we all benefit from a strong economy”
    … and thats just the tax cut for the 2 to 10 million turnover companies, wait until the benefits flow from our tax cuts for businesses turning over a BILLION Dollars. And thats before we get to introduce tax cuts for the really big companies…..

    And leigh sales let him speak, and every single word he uttered reinforced who he is, what he believes, and who he is interested in helping.
    Not a single direct benefit for us, the mugs, the real Australians, paying our meagre tax bills so our government can provide services and support for those who need it, for our community, for other real Australians.
    Meanwhile,… all the financial help goes to those turning over millions and billions, and it would seem much of that will end up overseas.

    It was the first time in a long time I didn’t hate Leigh Sales, because she finally let a liberal douche do himself slowely for all who watched.

  36. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    Annie,

    would Malcolm Muck’s pathetic performance and inability to imagine what ordinary voters want, change how the ordinary voters would consider voting?

    We all need to know that Mal’s and LNP’s fakeness resonates with the electorate. Does it?

  37. Michael Taylor

    Social media had a field day over Malcolm’s comment that he pays no attention to the polls. Given that he challenged Abbott because of his poor polling, social media rightly points out that if that’s the case then Malcolm certainly does pay attention to the polls.

    And I’m certain that he’s paying attention to them now.

  38. Happy___Annie

    Jennifer, I really don’t know. It resonates with me, I can’t stand the pompous twit, but I am engaged and very aware of everything they say.

    I am so excited for the election in the hope that enough of those caught on the debt / work life balance treadmill with barely enough time to take a breath, get the chance to stop for long enough to see the utter rubbish the libs are saying.

    I am hoping for a landslide like we saw in the QLD state election. I remember coming up to that election and all the MSM talked about was how great Newman was, I was in such a state of despair, when I discovered Table Talk and Bob’s Ellis’ ranting on how the Libs were going to be wiped out… it kept me sane, made me laugh and gave me hope

    But what if they are not watching, or dont have time to remember all the unity ticket bullshit, along with returned to surplus at the end of the first term and every term after that… or no cuts to the ABC or SBS…. I am so hoping they remember the lies.
    But there were so many, and I remember it was like a Tsunami of shock and horror when they first came to power. I remember Abbotts face as the closed the door for their first meeting after forming Govt. And the look was pure evil.

    Actually I am hoping that the unions get some ads that cut through like the workchoices ads that resonated with EVERY worker who was at risk of losing out with the sweeping changes to workplace relations.

    Those ads cut through. People understood enough that they were in a battle, and it was the out of touch govt of the day that saw them, the worker, the battlers, as the enemy. And the idea was to crush them and remove their collective bargaining power.
    Even those disengaged understood that.

  39. Arthur Plottier

    IMO the day when we are going to have hope to get ahead will the day when both parties and the electorate for that matter finishing the obsession with returning to surplus.
    If we want to get out of the hole we have to invest and to invest we need money which = debt
    I can see that in the next 6 months will be an improvement (false) in the GDP because all the work that will generate the climatic catastrophic events in NSW and Tasmania.
    The same things happens in Japan after the tsunami.
    That GDP improvement will make happy some politicians that like to use it as credit in how they are managing the economy but do not impress me at all.
    I like to see sustainable develop indicators and polices which will make the economy move in the right direction and eventually will help to balance the books.
    So far I think that only the Greens and some micro parties are on a similar page that I am.

  40. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    Yes, Arthur but for bulk we need Labor too.

    Hence The Alliance of The Greens/Labor/ProgressiveParties/saneIndependents

    The grouping works no matter what the respective entities say.

    Labor beneficiaries must come down from their inherited high horse and acknowledge the benefits of the Alliance with the Greens who are just doing similar to what Labor forebears did. For God’s sake!

  41. Backyard Bob

    JMS,

    The grouping works no matter what the respective entities say.

    Yet, you’re unable to say how. And by the way, where are the Greens pushing for this Alliance? Where?

  42. cornlegend

    Backyard Bob
    “where are the Greens pushing for this Alliance?” they aren’t they’re after global domination
    As for formal Alliances , heard of the Dodo bird?
    I am still waiting to hear which Labor MPs would be “acceptable” and who would determine that to qualify for this Alliance?
    can we have a list as it might be wise to know BEFORE an election who would get expelled from the ALP . Surely a hit list has been drawn up? as with the “sane” Independents who determines ‘sane”
    Is there a committee of group where names are submitted for “Alliance” approval?
    Should the members of an “Alliance” be bound by majority decision?
    Would representation be based on Party percentages of H.O.R.
    e.g Wilkie {I assume he’s included} 0.67% Bandt 0.67%
    Jennifer, what would your role in “your Alliance” be?
    are there other positions for unelected members ?

    JMS, don’t just blow me off, I would like answers

  43. Backyard Bob

    Cornie,

    “where are the Greens pushing for this Alliance?” they aren’t they’re after global domination

    So is every socio-political ideology. It’s a pretty empty observation, ultimately, don’t you think? Or were you joking?

  44. cornlegend

    Joking :-}
    just frustated never getting answers about this “Alliance” its makesup, the decision makers etc etc

  45. jantonius

    Jennifer M-S,
    I am all for an alliance which could atrophy the power of the Libs and their corporate owners, perhaps by simply keeping the bastards out of power indefinitely, instead of them returning to Government every few years. But… where is the will and the means for that among the current bunch of electable MPs? The ALP are a mixed Union and corporate Party. That’s the ballgame there.

    What do you mean by an alliance?
    To form Government? To keep the Libs out of power?
    To form policy?

    Who is a ‘progressive’? What would not be ‘progressive’? This question asks about the possible borderline issues, such as on budgeting measures.
    If I am very sympathetic to the case of refugees, am I anti-progressive if I compromise my policy on this issue to bargain on an issue closer to home, say a proper administration of aged care, or the opening of advanced education to a wider range of the public?

    What would be core policy, to qualify for being in the Alliance? Please name some that would be core – and some which might not be.
    Would voting yes/no on a particular issue/Bill be mandatory in some cases?
    Would any alliance allow public disagreements? What happens when there is a lot of open disagreement?

    Is an Alliance another name for a Party?
    If so, who is going to leave their own Party to join an Alliance?

    What in the foreseeable future is the likelihood of ‘progressive’ Labor MPs or candidates joining any kind of alliance with the Greens?
    Is for example Albanese likely to join? Isn’t he a Labor ‘progressive’? If he would not, who would?

    Let’s say that a multi-Party alliance is set up, across Party lines. How would it devolve? Is there not a strong chance that the eventual consequence would be much like there is now? Would not the Libs flourish in these circumstances – particularly as the Media are theirs for free?
    Are the alliance going to have formal meetings? Who chairs the meetings and makes the decisions that the alliance follow? Do they put out public statements, about what distinguishes the alliance?

    Are the Libs going to sit back passively and watch what happens? Are their Media going to start reporting fairly and accurately?

    Are the ‘progressive’ alliance going to get big corporate dollars, and how? Or are they to do the begging email bit?
    What issues matter most to the electorate, that the alliance could appeal on? Refugees? Education? Health? NBN? AGW? Politicians’ benefits?
    If I disagree with the majority of the electorate on what issues matter most, could I still be in a ‘progressive’ alliance which survives on appeals to the public?
    What ‘progressive’ alliance could survive if it did not raise and sustain public support?

  46. cornlegend

    jantonius
    Don’t hold your breath waiting for a reasoned response, I have been waiting for months for a response to similar questions

  47. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    It’s late
    now
    mates

    Await …

    my response
    tomorrow!

    Although ByB
    and cornlegend
    are just being
    pigheaded
    again,

    I’ll try
    to ally
    jantonius
    nonetheluss

  48. cornlegend

    It is even later now Jennifer , but no, not being pigheaded, would like answers to a reasonable series of questions
    If you don’t know or can’t answer, just say so but this has been the perennial Jennifer hobby horse and it is way past time for answers and I’m sure BYB would finally like some explanations too .. not the robotic “rusted on… etc non answers of the past

  49. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    Both cornlegend and ByB have been answered to the best of my ability many, many times, jantonius, so I won’t address my response to them but to you.

    I will attempt to give you some understanding in response to each of your questions, as follows:

    In your first paragraph, you agree you want an alliance to atrophy power from the Libs and corporate owners.

    That is the 1st goal. We won’t achieve success at all if the public does not see Labor, the Greens and other Progressives ALL working together to achieve that aim.

    Equally importantly, if a LNP defeat is achieved, it must have progressive, reformist and sustainable effect by the New Alliance Government working together. The forces within Labor such as unions and corporate pigs might not like the movement for an Alliance but they will ignore it at their peril. There are many Labor followers who do want change and are NOT happy about the Right’s stranglehold on Labor’s throat.

    Your 2nd paragraph has been answered but I’ll reinforce it. Yes I want two-pronged change: the annihilation of the LNP AND a reformist, progressive New Government that will work together to form reformed, progressive policy that meets the needs of ALL Australians, the environment and humane treatment of our global siblings, most particularly asylum seekers and detainees.

    Your 3rd paragraph asks:

    Who is a ‘progressive’? What would not be ‘progressive’? This question asks about the possible borderline issues, such as on budgeting measures.
    If I am very sympathetic to the case of refugees, am I anti-progressive if I compromise my policy on this issue to bargain on an issue closer to home, say a proper administration of aged care, or the opening of advanced education to a wider range of the public?

    My response is that I combine progressive, reformist, alternative, egalitarian and sustainable into the mix. I advocate the meaning to be interpreted from a left and centre/left perspective. However, I do acknowledge some issues are not aligned on these lines but they would be approached nonetheless with a fresh, reformist and progressive approach where applicable.

    Your 4th paragraph asks:

    What would be core policy, to qualify for being in the Alliance? Please name some that would be core – and some which might not be.
    Would voting yes/no on a particular issue/Bill be mandatory in some cases?
    Would any alliance allow public disagreements? What happens when there is a lot of open disagreement?

    Core policy will centre around the diverse spectrum of social policies: universal healthcare, universal education, affordable tertiary education with the possible aim of the return to Free Tertiary Education again. 100% Full and Meaningful Employment would be an imperative. 100% Housing would be another imperative. Public Funded Mortgages for Low and No Income people so they can live under their own roofs and not be beholden to landowners would be another progressive imperative.

    Economic policies would be negotiated amongst the various Alliance parties according to progressive economic theories such as Modern Monetary Theory and other aligned theories espoused by progressive economists such as Piketty and Stiglitz. At all times the economic thinking will be people focused and aimed to bring about economic equality.

    You then ask:
    Is an Alliance another name for a Party?
    If so, who is going to leave their own Party to join an Alliance?

    The Alliance is a group of Progressive parties: the Greens, Labor, Progressive parties such as the Australian Progressives and the Pirate Party and sane Independents like Muir, Mark Dickenson in Victoria Senate. I’m just making suggestions but I would hope these are the types of thinking politicians that would want to be involved.

    As for the rest of your questions …

    [What in the foreseeable future is the likelihood of ‘progressive’ Labor MPs or candidates joining any kind of alliance with the Greens?
    Is for example Albanese likely to join? Isn’t he a Labor ‘progressive’? If he would not, who would?

    Let’s say that a multi-Party alliance is set up, across Party lines. How would it devolve? Is there not a strong chance that the eventual consequence would be much like there is now? Would not the Libs flourish in these circumstances – particularly as the Media are theirs for free?
    Are the alliance going to have formal meetings? Who chairs the meetings and makes the decisions that the alliance follow? Do they put out public statements, about what distinguishes the alliance?

    Are the Libs going to sit back passively and watch what happens? Are their Media going to start reporting fairly and accurately?

    Are the ‘progressive’ alliance going to get big corporate dollars, and how? Or are they to do the begging email bit?
    What issues matter most to the electorate, that the alliance could appeal on? Refugees? Education? Health? NBN? AGW? Politicians’ benefits?
    If I disagree with the majority of the electorate on what issues matter most, could I still be in a ‘progressive’ alliance which survives on appeals to the public?
    What ‘progressive’ alliance could survive if it did not raise and sustain public support?] …

    … I have not got a crystal ball anymore than you or cornlegend or ByB has.

    I am making a strong case for The Alliance because that is what Australia needs.

    Labor has lost its right to be the only bastion of alternative government because of Labor’s acquiescence to odious Neoliberalism over the past 4 decades, its disgusting abandonment of asylum seekers and poverty stricken Australians on Newstart. An Alliance made up of diverse left leaning and vibrant parties would keep integrity burning bright and shiny in the pursuit of negotiated policy and political relevance.

    That is why jantonius, I want The Alliance to work. Adam Bandt was spot on to publicly agree with me that that is the only way for the Greens and Labor to go!

  50. cornlegend

    Jennifer Meyer-Smith
    You have NEVER answered ANY of my questions and as far as I can remember, any of BYBS
    Could you direct me to where you had done so, or if not, humour me and answer the above questions again

  51. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    I have no time now to split hairs with you, cornlegend. i have just given all of you a comprehensive response which will have to suffice.

  52. cornlegend

    Jennifer Meyer-Smith
    Where?NOTHING I asked above has been answered, just airy fairy fluff

  53. Arthur Plottier

    Jennifer Meyer-Smith, you said
    Yes, Arthur but for bulk we need Labor too.
    Hence The Alliance of The Greens/Labor/ProgressiveParties/saneIndependents

    IMO there cannot be an alliance with the ALP with their neoliberal economy policies that are close to the ones by the moderate faction in the coalition.
    We got stabbed in the back by the Hawke–Keating Government when they implemented their polices shifting more wealthfrom the bottom to the top.
    ‘Today, a labor spokesman said:
    “We will resolve not to oppose some measures, and confirm our continued opposition to others. The ones we commit to reverse will be removed from our bottom line. This will mean the government’s budget contains unlegislated zombie measures, but ours will not.”

    I do not trust them, full stop!

  54. jantonius

    Jennifer,
    Thank you for your conscientious and polite response.
    It must be very disappointing to get the replies I see here.

    But you need to redirect your aspirations for a fairer society.
    Institutional alliances and debate are not going to improve a systemically crooked political landscape, which chews up debate and spits it out, as excuses for more corporatism.
    What is happening to the ALP is no accident. It would happen to any alliance.

    And there will not be any alliance.
    I asked supplementary questions of you, but the main points were up the top.
    The ALP are now a Union-corporate Party.
    What they have retained from the old days are very strict rules about membership.
    Anyone from the ALP who considers joining any such alliance would be threatened with expulsion – which means the dashing of their career prospects, after years of working to their current position.

    Without ALP members the alliance is not worth much, except perhaps as marginal publicity for some independents. It might possibly mean a few more independents as MPs, but the two main corporate Parties will still dominate – with their gruesome concerns for the budget deficit.

    (Better to get inside Labor and change it from within. It might take a generation or two. And a strong stomach.)

    If we had multi-member electorates you might have a better chance. The major Parties are not going to support such a change to elections, for obvious reasons.

  55. cornlegend

    jantonius
    “Anyone from the ALP who considers joining any such alliance would be threatened with expulsion”
    that is not unique to the ALP, Greens, PUP, Katter, Liberal Party and many others have the same conditions of membership

  56. cornlegend

    Arthur Plottier
    Stick with the LNP then

  57. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    Thanks jantonius,

    my main reason to include Labor was to save Labor from itself. Heroic yes, I know, but I wasn’t prepared to leave the idea without a fight.

    If there is absolutely no way around the membership bullshit thing within Labor, and there are no brave souls especially from the Left and Centre Left to join forces with the Greens and other Progressives, then I’ll stick to plan B and vote Greens anyway.

    However, in answer to Arthur Plottier, if I thought there was a chance Labor hierarchy and vested interests started to show its original heart and turned away from Neoliberalism, I would encourage Greens voters to be prepared to work effectively together with that better Labor in the Alliance.

  58. Backyard Bob

    I see exactly zero evidence of Greens interest in any such Alliance. Please point it out to me or get off Labor’s back. And read the Greens Constitution.

  59. Kaye Lee

    JMS,

    I admire your passion and understand your wishes but realistically there will never be a formal Alliance as you describe. People run as Independents precisely because they do NOT want to be dictated to on how to vote by any party bloc. The best thing we can do is know our local candidates, elect people who have the intelligence and work ethic to understand policy, the people skills to be able to negotiate, the willingness to protect the best interests of the people and to be accessible to their constituents. There need be no Alliance, just some sanity.

  60. corvus boreus

    Speaking of (relatively) decent/sane independent candidates, my palette of local options now includes Rob Oakeshott.

  61. Athena

    “Equality of opportunity is always good economics. … A stronger economy and a fairer society.”

    “Not sure about that. Over the last century or so, the best performing economy in the world has been the US economy and during that period ‘inequality’ in that country has accelerated at an increasing and alarming rate. And continues to so do. As it has across the world.”

    Ah… Bill is correct. There is data that shows that a tendency to equality benefits the economy and books have been written referencing this data. I’ve read a interesting book on this topic just recently called The Spirit Level. I’ve heard Tanya Plibersek refer to the same on a number of occasions. The Americans have made very little attempt at equality in recent decades. The US government is spending vast amounts of money on the business of war, which will be providing a huge boost to their economy.

  62. Arthur Plottier

    cornlegend I will never support or vote for a conservative party. I am more towards the left with strong views of protection of the environment and against excessive consumption to satisfying greed.
    For what I have read the Science party and the Greens are the closes to my views here in Tasmania.

  63. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    Yes it is good news about Rob Oakeshott, corvus.

  64. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    ByB,

    I’m surprised you didn’t see Adam Bandt publicly state about a week ago that Labor and the Greens should work together in an Alliance.

    Tsk, tsk.

  65. Kaye Lee

    That’s not quite what he said JMS. His words were:

    “And if we do end up in a situation where, like 2010, no one wins and everyone has to negotiate, then I would like to see Greens working with Labor.”

  66. helvityni

    Happy re Oakshott/ Windsor, hopeful of Labor/Green union ,alliance, marriage, friendship…

    Unhappy with anything to do with Liberals…

  67. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    On Twitter, he was not backing away from that interpretation. Nor has Di Natale if anybody wants to listen without the negativity.

  68. Arthur Plottier

    Jennifer, it cannot be an alliance between the Greens and the ALP.
    There are profound differences in priorities, polices and budgetary implementations.
    The centre right in the ALP have control on them and will not move.
    Yes, they can block policies put by the conservative parties and negotiate some polices together like the dental benefits put by the Greens but not more than that

  69. Kaye Lee

    I am not being negative. I am being realistic. Obviously the Greens policies are closer aligned with Labor. Obviously they would prefer to work with them. Equally obviously, they are not about to forego their status as their own party any more than Independents are going to give up their independence. Hopefully the Coalition are outnumbered and that those who are elected see the need for social reform and not just economic reform.

  70. Backyard Bob

    Sane Independent?

    Mr Oakeshott said he would be open to Mr Turnbull forming a minority government in the event of a hung parliament.

    ‘As prime minister, he would have first go in this process of forming government in the House of Representatives,’ Mr Oakeshott said.

  71. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    My advocacy for the Alliance is based on each party retaining its own party autonomy but working in an alliance with negotiated priorities of policy implementation and proportional benefits of places at the ministerial table. The greater diversity of multi-party representation is a profound win-win for Australia.

  72. kathysutherland2013

    @ Arthur Pottier – Yeah, but Willink (Science Party candidate) was a long-time member of the Liberal Party, has run as an Independent, had a go at local government….I think he just wants to be a pollie!

  73. Kaye Lee

    How can that work JMS? How are individual independents be represented by proportional benefits? They are better off being their own person/party and voting for or against legislation and pushing for the amendments they see as improvements as they all did in the Gillard government.

  74. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    ByB,

    point taken re: Oakeshott’s comment. I’ve sent a message to Oakeshott for clarification. I suggest you do the same.

  75. Backyard Bob

    And while I’m at it, just because Windsor hates Abbott, it doesn’t make him some progressive hero. Windsor has endorsed a referendum on the death penalty and supports liberalisation of gun control, among other shite. In the end he’s another conservative.

  76. Backyard Bob

    JMS,

    I’ve sent a message to Oakeshott for clarification. I suggest you do the same.

    Already done it.

  77. Backyard Bob

    proportional benefits of places at the ministerial table

    What? [looks askance]

  78. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    KL,

    proportional votes means proportional power in the Alliance which in turn means proportional opportunity to get their own policy priorities up because they will be in positions to negotiate with other allies to promote and prioritise those policies.

    From where I stand, being inside the Alliance would be a stronger position for any party or representative despite their size because they can know their position gives them higher power in negotiations. That’s not the case in the current duopoly.

  79. Arthur Plottier

    From Oakeshott Face Book page:
    But to assure the electorate and the broader Australian community, I have never voted “no confidence” nor “blocked supply” in seventeen years in state and federal politics. It would be up to party leaders to reach out if they felt the need to formalise arrangements with a piece of paper to help form Government.
    This is therefore a matter for Malcolm Turnbull. As Prime Minister, he would have ‘first go’ in this process of forming Government in the House of Representatives. I would not block his efforts to do so, and would accept his phone call if he wanted to formalise something in more detail.
    I ask the community to remember that a Prime Minister is not only in office prior to an election, but also during and after. They therefore have the responsibility to lead on any process of negotiation, in the unlikely event that it may occur.

  80. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    ByB,

    I assume you’ll read my latest comment before you do your usual gloating.

    Re Windsor, he comes from a conservative past but I think he has his constituents’ interests at heart. He proved himself capable of positive political priorities with Gillard and he is a far better choice than Barnaby so think of the positives.

  81. Arthur Plottier

    kathysutherland2013 Thank you for that input, you made me think now and the Greens will be first then.
    How a person that a long member of the Libs can find something in common with the Science party?
    It is nearly 180 turn around.

  82. Backyard Bob

    JMS,

    I assume you’ll read my latest comment before you do your usual gloating.

    I dunno, the more I read the more afeared I get. 😉

  83. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    What solutions do you have, ByB, to our current neoliberalist duopoly?

    You’re good at saying what can’t happen; now say what can happen.

    By the way, if I don’t respond for a while, it means I’m watching tv.

  84. Kaye Lee

    Proportional representation on votes would see a very different parliament but our system doesn’t allow for that. Proportional representation on seats brings us back to the problem. How do you decide which Independent gets to be a Minister? Adam Bandt represented less than 1% of elected reps as did each of the others and they were unlikely to agree on any one of them to represent them collectively.

  85. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    Voting results would be significantly different from what we’ve so far experienced, if we had a proportional voting system that the voters could respond to.

    Therefore, so far we don’t know specifically what might happen. However, if there are two micro parties or two independents who have achieved the same number of seats, I suppose there would need to be some kind of count-back system to differentiate who would achieve a place at the table.

    On the other hand, if there is an Alliance of various representative bodies, then why not allow each of them to have at least one primary position?

  86. corvus boreus

    Backyard Bob,
    Note the employment of the quantitative term ‘relatively’ in my reference to Rob Oakeshott’s virtues.
    The recently ex-National turned Independent (a member of the Gillard LAB-INDI-GRN ‘aliiance’) earns a far lower number on my personal loath-a-meter than the incumbent NAT(Smirking Sloth in Akubra) or the candidates from the CDP and CEC.
    Robbo will be my number 3.
    His inclusion on my HoR paper is the result of a shift in definitional delineation of electoral boundaries, and the inclusion of his home-town support crowd should open the race up a bit where I live (as well as potentially further splitting the ‘conservative’ vote).
    I welcome that.

    Ps, It will be interesting to see how Oakeshott allocates his preferences (ie; prints his how-to-vote cards).

  87. kathysutherland2013

    We do indeed have a few weirdos here in Tasmania, as you probably know, Arthur Plottier (Just realised I spelt your name wrongly earlier! Sorry!) I can sort of cope with Jacqui Lambie – she has some crazy ideas, but at least she doesn’t seem to be beholden to anybody! The person (alleged) I’d love to see the end of is Eric Abetz, but sadly I only have one vote!

    Here in Denison, we have a reasonable Independent, and I think he’ll get back in.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

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: