Political talk from outside of the UK
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By new puritan
Membership Days Posts
#297948
It seems a bit like the Blairite/Brownite divide on steroids. Can't really work out why the ALP is so unpopular though given that the Australian economy seems to be doing reasonably well, and that Tony Abbott is an absolute wanker. Admittedly, my knowledge of Australian politics isn't particularly extensive.
 
By youngian
Membership Days Posts
#297966
Me neither but I believe Lynton Crosby used the quirks of the electoral system to maximise seats without their being any popular vote landslide for John Howard.

Also think Paul Keating is one of the most interesting statesmen from any western country post cold war. Thought very hard about how the tectonic plates shifted and what Australia's place is in the Asian economy. The Australian Tories were to paraphase Keating still doffing their caps to the Queen and waiting for their OBEs.
 
By Tubby Isaacs
Membership Days Posts
#297967
Before Tony Abbott, the right were led by Malcolm Turnbull, of Spycatcher trial fame.

The 182nd richest Australian, apparently. Looks considerably less of a wanker than Abbott though.
 
By spoonman
Membership Days Posts
#298247
Turnbell, on the face of it, doesn't seem to be too bad of a bloke, one of a few people in the Australian Liberal party that could be fairly called a liberal rather than a populist conservative. His downfall was when he asked Liberal MPs in Canberra to back Labors Carbon Trading scheme, a leadership vote was called for and Turnbell lost to Abbot by one vote. Abbot hasn't had his leadership called into question yet, but he does come across as an arsehole quite a lot.

I reckon if Labor were not in a minority government depending on a independents and smaller parties in both houses, along with better poll ratings, they likely wouldn't be tearing each other apart. The wheels have been slowly falling off. When Labor got back into power at Federal level in 2007, they held all six state parliaments and both territories either on their own or the major coalition party meaning at the time the Liberal's most powerful politician was Brisbane mayor Campbell Newman (now Queensland Premier), but the Liberal/National coalition has been fighting back since. I don't think Labor hold a majority of seats in any state or territory parliament at present and in the last state elections they were well routed in Queensland and New South Wales. Arguably a factor in that was that the Labor parties in both state governments were in power for quite a long time fatigue set in.
 
By Timbo
Membership Days Posts
#305636
If they look like the guy on the left, they're welcome to divert a few to North Wales
By new puritan
Membership Days Posts
#305887
More on Abbott from the NS. The more I read about him, the more I realise what an absolute thundercunt this bloke is.

As he praised Murdoch in his IPA speech, itself weighty with Biblical references, the tradition of politics Tony Abbott has embraced was clear – that of obstinacy, demagoguery, and dogmatism.

Reforms promised by Abbott during the speech included privatizing Medibank; the state-owned private health insurer for over three million Australians, and repealing Section 18C of the Racial Discrimination Act. This latter policy is justified ostensibly in the name of free speech and the recognition of Australia’s Western heritage; something Abbott called “the new Great Australian silence”, absurdly comparing it to the disregard with which Australia treats its history of violence against Aboriginal people. If Section 18C is repealed, racial hatred will effectively be sanctioned by law.

As well as this, Abbott wishes to cut back public spending, regressively reduce personal and corporate taxes, and strengthen Australia’s borders to create a country “where the boats are stopped – with tough and proven measures.”

It is worth noting that Australia rode out the global financial crisis relatively unscathed. Abbott voted against the AU$42bn stimulus that helped keep Australia out of recession, but despite his convictions, today the country’s government debt as a percentage of GDP is a mere 27 per cent – lower than that of Sweden, Norway, and Qatar – and it enjoys a triple-A credit rating from all three of the main ratings agencies. It is also experiencing a sustained mining boom along with steady GDP growth, fuelled largely by Chinese consumption. This has meant that the average household income in Australia has become much higher than the equivalent in the UK or the US – roughly AU$64,168 per year, equivalent to £43,590 in the UK or $66,765 in the US.


http://www.newstatesman.com/politics/20 ... and-no-one
By new puritan
Membership Days Posts
#314179
The ongoing march for privatisation does not stop here. Rightwing thinktanks in Australia, such as the Centre for Independent Studies and the Institute of Public Affairs (a group that refuses to release a list of its financial donors), regularly call for the mass privatisation of state services. This includes the ABC, despite consistent public polling finding huge support for the broadcaster.

Australia is the most tightly controlled media environment in the western world, with over 70% of print publication owned by US citizen Rupert Murdoch; in the words of John Pilger, “Australia is the world's first murdochracy”. Indeed, charges against the ABC mirror the comments by James Murdoch about the BBC in 2009: “The expansion of state-sponsored journalism is a threat to the plurality and independence of news provision.”

Imagining a different Australia is possible, but the challenges are great.

The corporate media deliberately conflates “privatisation” with “reform”, and neoliberal ideology is accepted as fact. Even the Greens have embraced a market mechanism to reduce climate change, despite vast evidence questioning for-profit companies being the most appropriate way to do so. Canadian writer Naomi Klein is currently working on a book that will argue that capitalism is inherently incapable of reforming itself to tackle catastrophic changes to our climate.


http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree ... ia-failure

I suspect none of this sounds unfamiliar to British ears, either.
 
By Abernathy
Membership Days Posts
#314319
davidjay wrote:
Excuse my possible stupidity, but does Australia have any borders?


Well, yes. The entire perimeter of its coastline. A rather humungous natural border which to be fair to the Labor Party, must be fucking difficult to retain control of. But that won't stop Lynton Crosby.
By davidjay
Membership Days Posts
#314327
Abernathy wrote:
davidjay wrote:
Excuse my possible stupidity, but does Australia have any borders?


Well, yes. The entire perimeter of its coastline. A rather humungous natural border which to be fair to the Labor Party, must be fucking difficult to retain control of. But that won't stop Lynton Crosby.


That's what I mean, sort of. Is an island's border its coastline?
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