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We always get the government we deserve

“Is it becoming clear yet that the conservative ideology espoused by Abbott and the LNP jeopardises the average Australian family’s way of life?” asks Matt Hurley.

I read yesterday morning with complete disbelief the government has requested the Clean Energy Finance Corporation not fund wind farms. The LNP are beyond wearing their motivations on their sleeves. They’re selling us out. A clean, prosperous future forsaken to wring a bit more dirty money out of the ground.

I was going to write my typical diatribe on the subject which appeals only to those who are already politically aware and attuned, and the rest sitting back thinking “OMG shut up, Hurley.” Instead I’m going on a different tangent.

It may come as a surprise, but I’m not a bitter, miserable, angry bastard who sits back and picks fault with everything. It could be an easy conclusion to come to, but the reality is quite the opposite. I’m a happy guy with a lot to be grateful for. I’m lucky enough to have a beautiful family, many truly outstanding friends and brothers, and a job in construction that whilst lacking in intellectual stimulation is sufficient to provide for my family.

So why do I get so worked up about the sorry state of affairs that is Australia? Why do I care? Why am I constantly railing against the government? Why don’t I just ‘shut up and stop thinking so much’ as I have been told to innumerable times?

Because it is clear to me that many of the things that contribute to my happiness are under attack by our elected conservative government and society’s underlying shift to the right. The things that make me happy are fairly universal; family and friends. I wish to demonstrate what it is about right wing politics that has perturbed me so, and why every little thing they do affects all Australians.

My family is the product of Australia’s brilliant public health system. My wife pregnant with mono-amniotic twins, we were lucky enough to have publicly funded access to an obstetrician who is a world renowned expert in complex multiple births. Upon their safe arrival they were cared for by the friendliest and most caring of pediatricians and midwives, all on the taxpayer funded public health system. Conservatives hate universal health care, they would do away with it in a heart beat, and no one can say they haven’t tried. I owe my family to publicly funded universal healthcare.

The various doctors, nurses and midwives who have assured my family’s good health are all university educated. We have a system in Australia that allows people to pursue a university education based on their abilities; how suitable they are for academic pursuits, not necessarily how much money they have. Guess which way around the conservatives would have it? Yeah, they tried that too.

Conservatives hold nurses in contempt. And ambos. And firefighters. Unions and penalty rates are the antithesis to their ideology. One only need look at the lead up to the Victorian state election to see that. In my immediate family alone, I am proud to count two career firefighters and three who have worked, or still do work as nurses, so the conservative ideology is an attack on a good deal of my family’s livelihood.

Is it becoming clear yet that the conservative ideology espoused by Abbott and the LNP jeopardises the average Australian family’s way of life? I think what people need is a catalyst. Some act of political treachery that hits a bit too close to home.

The major catalyst in my transition from apolitical to keen political observer was Queensland’s anti-association laws. They were billed as anti-bikie laws. Some years ago I began hanging around with a small Melbourne based patched motorcycle club. A widely varied and colourful bunch ranging from scholars to truck drivers, I found them to be people of exceptional character and integrity. They welcomed me with open arms and encouraged me to just be myself. I soon became one of them.

Whilst my club was not on the list of clubs banned in Queensland, I saw Campbell Newman’s VLAD laws as a full frontal attack on something I hold dear: The freedom to associate with whomever I want. Thus began my dissent. It opened my eyes to all manner of betrayals and deceptions being committed in our names.

The silver lining is if it wasn’t for these anti-bikie laws I would probably not have stumbled across another collective of activist motorcycle enthusiasts amongst which I have befriended many great writers, dissidents, and assorted maniacs with a similar passion for what is good and right.

Given that in roughly a years time we might be looking at a federal election, I have the next 12 months to convince my friends that there is something worth your consideration, worth your time, worth changing, worth protecting, worth fighting for.

We always get the government we deserve, and if we only think about politics in the ten minutes waiting in line to get to the ballot box, making stupid decisions like “my family has always voted blah so I’ll just vote blah”, we deserve the government that takes us for fools and betrays our country’s future for a dirty hole in the ground.



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  1. babyjewels10

    It’s beyond most people’s comprehension, isn’t it? Just when I think TA couldn’t stoop any lower, he does. But I’m hoping that this latest debacle and the newly approved Shenhua mine, will be enough to throw them out at the next election. Then, I’ll be happy to fund a Royal Commission into Liberal Party Funding. It couldn’t be clearer that they’re owned by the mining industry.

  2. Free-Thinker

    The photo of the LNP Cabinet provides a symbolic moment in our national history.
    Most face the camera.
    In contrast, the worst Prime Minister since Federation is captured in this freeze moment, looking belligerently and suspiciously to his left.

  3. Keitha Granville

    Do you think ? I am constantly astounded at the number of people who STILL think TA and his mates are the best thing since sliced bread.
    My husband decalred glumly this morning that he was besoming ever more depressed about the place our country is now in, about the awful things this government is doing seemingly with no way or chance for anyone to stop them. How can they STOP the CEFC funding clean energy ? We must be even more of a laughing stock overseas, honestly it’s becoming more embarrassing to say “I’m Australian”. where it used to be the best and proudest boast around the world. My husband was born in the UK, now a citizen of OZ, but still entitled to a UK passport. I wish I was.
    All of thie things we are, and our children are, happened because of Labor government forward thinking. 3 of my 4 children are now struggling with dead end jobs, no job, cuts to services, and no decent future to look forward to for their children. My parents lived through 2 World Wars for this country – they would be horrified at the rape that is currently happening at the hands of the fascists currently in government.
    We have to stop them next time, please.

  4. diannaart

    Surely the latest pick from Captain Abbott means the gloves are off.

    Big ‘L’ Liberals have declared what they stand for – #fossil$ (yes, there is such a thing – I just invented it).

    We can all reveal our true colours – no more pretendies that #fossil$ proponents are just ill-informed, when they are deliberately ignorant all in order to produce more #fossil$ and absolutely loath the idea of human beings as social beings.

  5. Pingback: We always get the government we deserve -Written by The AIM Network | winstonclose

  6. Free-Thinker

    History is not going to remember Tony Abbott kindly.
    As Australians, we need to make him political history as soon as possible.

    Abbott may well have been ‘ the Prime Minister we had to have’ to awaken our complacent Australian electorate, that good governance cannot be taken for granted, it doesn’t just happen, it has to be continually worked for. And compulsively bad-mouthing all politicians as a group doesn’t solve anything.

    You speak steadily increasingly numbers Matt, when you suggest we get the government we deserve.

  7. kerri

    Excellent article Matt Hurley.
    I could identify all the way through. My dad ran a grocery store my mum was a milliner who retired to have 4 kids. She always told us we were middle class but in my adulthood I recognise we were working class with benefits. (Benefits being food on tap) Dad and mum believed strongly in a good education as dad had been deprived of his ambition to be a Chemist by his dad’s death and the need to take over the family business. Mum had any interest in Eduction beaten out of her by the nuns who saw her as impure given her parents were a “mixed marriage” (one Catholic one not) needless to say I am atheist as is my husband whose mother suffered a very similar bludgeoning. My sister and I both completed B.Eds allowing me to become a teacher. As a teacher I was nurtured by some very caring senior staff and given not only positions of responsibility but the opportunity to learn to ski! (Back in the good old days the school’s policy was to send along with the school trip at least one non skiing staff member to learn to ski and broaden the base of staff who could later help out) Through skiing I met my husband and am now retired and very comfortable. I often tell people of the benefits gained from a free tertiary education. Vale Gough Whitlam! I am a firm beliver in free Primary, free Secondary and one free Tertiary qualification provided students succeed at Uni. If not, out to the workforce. I believe this is fair and am a living example of rising above my birth status economically due to a degree. Had I not married I would probably be a Principal by now anyway. I am lucky. My kids are both at Uni and we are able to cover their fees. But that old quote (variously credited and probably misquoted here)
    “What if the cure for cancer lies in the mind of a child who cannot afford a decent education”
    Makes me wish the present Government would all develop cancer!
    In the meantime maybe we could all email GG Cosgrove airing our concerns at the inhumanity and corruption of this Government and what they are doing to our international reputation?

  8. rosskarendanielDaniel

    I also have always wondered why I think so differently than so many other people. Why is it I believe I have a view of our planet so much at odds with my LNP friends and even family members. Not that I have that many LNP friends.
    I have come to what I feel is the only logical explanation.
    I possess the Neanderthal gene.
    The Neanderthals survived and lived in harmony with this planet for Millenia, until they were usurped by Homo sapiens. My theory is that homosapiens had to be from another planet, because they immediately proceeded to destroy it in one way or another. And have continued to do so. They must have inter bred with Neanderthals as it took many thousands of years for them to be replaced.
    I believe that some of us still carry that gene. There can be no other explanation.
    ( tongue planted firmly in cheek, but !!!!)

  9. Deb

    Matt, we need people like you in government.

  10. Harquebus

    There is nothing clean or prosperous about wind farms. They wear our long before they return the total embodied energy used in their manufacture, construction and maintenance. Also, the CO2 produced from manufacture of steel, concrete and the transport of everything needs to be factored.
    There is not one part of the mining and processing of rare earths used in wind turbine magnets that is not destructive to the environment.

    We get governments foisted upon us by the corporate sponsorship of candidates.

  11. Loz

    Excellent article.

  12. Shogan

    And coal mines, uranium mines, iron ore mines & coal fired power stations are safe, clean & healthy for the environment aren’t they Harquebus?

  13. eli nes

    education was never free kerri it had many ‘non-fee impediments’ today the vice-chancellors have tapped the government for 100s of millions to teach tens of thousands of functionally illiterate and innumerate students. The pynenut has just opened the pandora’s tertiary box by giving universities and ‘institutes’ access to any australians who can spend up to $96000 on training courses exhorted with you are not liable for repayments till you earn $54+000. Who do you think explains the result of 6% compound?? Who cares? not labor, why?
    “I have the next 12 months to convince my friends that there is something worth your consideration, worth your time, worth changing, worth protecting, worth fighting for.”
    Where are you getting your information to convince ‘friends’?
    What techniques will you use to breach the power of slogans?
    How will you reinforce the ‘learning’?

  14. Rosemary (@RosemaryJ36)

    Abbott OUT! Fascists OUT!! Let us find some decent and honourable men and women to stand as independents and give this country back to the people!

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