But, you say, the Coalition were given the majority of votes in the recent election. According to the Australian Electoral Commission’s website (at the time of writing — not all seats had been declared) the two-party preferred result is Coalition 6,552,111 and the ALP 6,137,087 you are correct. But it’s not that clear cut. A quick scan of the results in the table below shows that the ALP got more direct votes that the Liberal Party. In fact you have to add the Liberal Party, LNP and Nationals (all different political parties when it suits them) together to beat the ALP figure. Clicking this link will take you to the up to date figures at the time you are reading.
Party 2019 Vote Liberal Party 3,943,957 Liberal National Party (Queensland) 1,230,442 The Nationals 639,412 Country Liberals (NT) 38,557 Australian Labor Party 4,669,111 The Greens 1,456,890 United Australia Party 483,713 Pauline Hanson’s One Nation 435,037 Animal Justice Party 115,474 Independents 475,399 Informal 822,819
All other political groupings received under 100,000 votes.
Just 4% (ODT)
A trickle of misinformation about Labor policy became a torrent on Facebook as the campaign unfolded. A Guardian investigation has tracked the course of the death tax scare, revealing alarming implications for Australian democracy
Political impact of the falsehoods
So an intriguing question arises. What may have been the election outcome if voters understood these economic realities?
The Coalition currently holds 77 seats in the House of Representatives — a majority of just three. A total of 38 Coalition seats are held by a margin of less than 10%.
If just 5% of all voters realised they were being lied to and switched sides, 15 seats would change from the Coalition to the reformist parties (all other things being equal). That would give Labor/Greens 84 and the Coalition 62.
If 9% of voters realised they were being duped and switched, 35 seats would change. That would give Labor/Greens 104 and the Coalition 43.
That is pretty much what their economic record deserves.
The miracles that come with Ignorance (ODT)
There’s always going to be a problem with the fact that a large number of people aren’t politically engaged and make their decision based on things like the Clive Palmer ads or what someone posted on Facebook, so maybe there’s no simple answer. But it would certainly help if the media made sure that at least those paying attention weren’t misled by simple slogans that don’t reflect the reality of policy at all.
The combined first preference HoR vote of the four parties who make up the Coalition is, at this point in time, 41.81% of the electorate. Labor and the Greens combined got 43.45% of the first preference vote.
Why isn’t Labor shouting this from the rooftops and putting the Coalition on notice that a greater number of Australian people voted for the progressive parties directly and they are duty bound to represent the people who did so?
The previous election was bought by Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull with a $1.7 million personal donation that boosted Coalition election advertising in the campaign’s crucial last fortnight. That now looks like small beer next to the 2019 election’s anti-Labor advertising spending (approximately $80 million when one adds the Coalition’s $20 million spend to the Clive Palmer-United Australia Party spend of $60 million-plus). This is four times the size of Labor’s $20 million ad budget – a huge disparity.
Palmer’s gambit, which creates a friendly environment for him to gain regulatory approval for a Queensland coal mine vastly bigger than Adani’s during this term of parliament, takes Australia into banana republic territory in terms of money politics.
Lesson: Australia already needed campaign finance laws to stop the purchasing of elections. It needs them even more urgently now.
This all goes to the inexorable transition of power from citizens to multinational corporate interests, from voters to those who don’t vote. It is a global trend but given that Australia is a relatively small market, the concentration of corporate power via monopolies and duopolies is marked.
To borrow from the parlance of the Prime Minister, the big corporations are definitely “having a go to get a go”. Citizens however, briefly, had their go the other day. And, having made their decision in favour of the Coalition, have given a really good go to multinationals.
Large corporations and some wealthy business people, unlike ordinary people, make political donations. They don’t give money to political parties on the expectation of zero return. They have paid their dues, now it’s payback time. The only way to extract this cancer from the body politic is to ban money in politics. Australia is a long way from doing that, and until it comes, public confidence in the system will continue to erode.
Labor’s chances were not sunk by self-funded retirees, but by the very voters who stood to benefit most from the ALP’s policies
A big, bold reform program requires voters to take some things on faith. Few outside those directly affected have the time or inclination to delve into the complex details of tax treatment of investment properties or to understand franking credit refunds. In this election, voters were asked to take Labor on trust that its policy plans would not take jobs and the economy down with them.
Australians immune to Murdoch think past sloganeering and read policy lost. It shows the power of negative media fake scare mongering does win elections even when its simply sold as a choice between Bill and Me. Education matters and civics is badly missed in our schools. We need governments that work for Australia not firestarters that burn for it and their pockets. (ODT)
The left made up ground in Melbourne’s traditional Liberal-leaning south-east, while losing support in the western suburbs.
In the seat of Melbourne, the Greens’ Adam Bandt now holds the electorate he first won from Labor in 2010 with a margin of 23.3 per cent.
Bill Shorten threatened our hip pocket – or at least the one we aspire to have – so he was punished too. And maybe he was punished because the Australian people never much warmed to him. He has resigned as Leader, though he says he will keep going until the ALP chooses a new leader. Maybe it will be one a little more inspirational than Bill Shorten.
The Coalition ran a cynical, deceptive and negative campaign. They labelled every one of Shorten’s initiatives a new tax. The catchphrase “The Bill you cannot afford” was powerful and effective. It may have been the last thing many voters thought of before they entered the polling booth. Labor can’t really complain. The template was Paul Keating’s anti-GST message before the 1993 Election — the unlosable election that John Hewson lost.
Keating lost the subsequent election in a landslide. Which heralded a decade of Howard conservative rule — a divisive decade from which Australia has, clearly, still not recovered.
A government can win one election too many. Three years of Scott Morrison at the helm might just be enough to keep the liars and the cheats out of power for a decade.
We can only be optimistic. It is all we can do right now. The alternative is unthinkable.
The laxity of political finance regulation at the federal level also creates loopholes at the state or territory level, where genuine progress has been made in limiting political expenditure by parties, candidates and lobbying groups.It is equally important that allowing paid political advertising in electronic media drives up the costs of political campaigns and increases dependence on wealthy donors.Australia could rein in the ever-increasing role of private money in its federal elections. Labor and the Greens are committed to greater transparency for political donations and spending caps on federal campaign expenditure, while the High Court has shown it is now unlikely to strike down reasonable (“proportionate”) regulation of political finance.Democracy should be about political equality, not about the deep pockets of billionaires.
I realise that all of these ideas may not be practical, and I have not worked out all the details. Rather, I hope to start a conversation here. Australia needs to get its democracy back. A major way we move towards this is by removing the poison that is Murdoch’s media empire and banning the wealthy from purchasing elections.
I suspect that part of the angst comes from reviews of internal polling, which shows a bleak picture for Abbott in particular. This is a serious repudiation of the hard right of the Liberal Party, along with their backers at News Corp, 2GB, 3AW, 4BC and elsewhere. But it also shows how precarious the position of the cultural right in this country is. They are reliant on favours and iffy government handouts to do business. They are beneficiaries and champions of middle-class welfare and rent-seeking. They are fanatically committed to outmoded forms of power, both literal and figurative. They are openly bigoted and intellectually barren. They have little to fall back on. No wonder they fear the drop. Here’s to giving them the push.
The Prime Minister claimed at his campaign launch last Sunday that the Coalition will “maintain the budget surpluses and pay down debt” and “deliver tax relief for families”. But the official data shows the Coalition is high-spending, high-borrowing and high-taxing. If past performance is an indicator of future delivery, his claim must be viewed with scepticism.
THE SLY OLD CROCODILE SLIDES INTO DENIAL
There is a theory that Rupert Murdoch always backs winners. That he prides himself about it. In election after election, when his preferred conservatives are heading for defeat, News Corp has dialled down the decibels of its pushy right-wing propaganda in the final few weeks, or months, before the vote. But this time, even though Bill Shorten is almost certain to lead Labor to victory on Saturday night, the Murdoch media have, for whatever reason, decided to double down — attacking the Labor Party and Bill Shorten with even more unconstrained hyperbole.
Now as a member of the Kooyong electorate, I’ve been subjected to so many letters from Joshie that I was starting to wonder if I could consider it stalking. Every day for the past week, I found at least one letter for either my wife and I or my son who is now of voting age. These letters were very informative. They told me such things as how my private health insurance was at risk, how rents would go up (did nobody consider that some of the good people of Kooyong may be rubbing their hands and thinking how good that would be thanks to the 83 properties they own?), how the economy might stall under Labor when thanks to his sound economic management growth was 2.75% and not 2,5% that the Reserve Bank has adjusted it to, how the Liberals had a plan for reducing emissions but not by so much that it would hurt anything including businesses because we all know that a strong economy which burns coal 24/7 is the best way to reduce emissions, and…
The silent convert who now supports Climate cahange and the Paris Agreement
It is a blatant denial of history for Scott Morrison to allege that the Labor Party cannot manage the economy when he knows the design and structure of the modern Australian economy was put in place exclusively by the Labor Party.
The economy is Labor’s – Labor’s rejection of the closed economic model of an economy ring-fenced by tariffs with a managed exchange rate, a sclerotic financial market and centrally arbitrated wages bequeathed us in 1983.
LNP’s MOthers Day Launch Screw The Lunch Mum (ODT)
Rolling out John Howard in marginal electorates may not be the best tactic since he represents the “golden era” before this unsettled Coalition Government.
JOHN HOWARD has been exhumed as the great grey hope and is being paraded among the marginal electorates to enthuse the faithful and woo the undecided — assuming, that is, that they know who he is, or at least was.
Kevin Rudd and Julia Gillard have been brought into to cameo roles in the Labor campaign, but those two can be counted in living memory. Little Johnny’s reign ended some 12 years ago when a great many younger voters – who have enrolled in record numbers – were not even in their teens and will see him, if they notice him at all, as a relic from a bygone era.
His legacy, divisive at the time, is now little more than a footnote in history: gun law reform (good), the GST (reluctantly accepted), the 2001 dog whistling and deceit at the Tampa election (bad) and the loss of his Government and his own seat in 2007 (depends where you stand).
Michaela Cash will probably take the 2019 election ‘blatantly stupid’ award from a long line of wannabes by trying to mimic Charlton Heston’s take my gun from my ‘cold dead hand’ speech with her comment.
“We are going to stand by our tradies and we are going to save their utes,” Ms Cash told reporters.
“We understand choice and that is what Bill Shorten is taking away from our tradies.”
A link to one of Heston’s ‘cold dead hand’ speeches is here. Is Cash, apart from not having a clue, lacking a certain gravitas?
What do you think?
Australia does not need a messiah, it needs a good politician.
Politics is, or should be, about building a better society. There is no greater vocation than trying to lead that and there are good and bad ideas, and people, in all parties. That is why the contest of ideas we are now in matters so much, and why it is a tragedy that so many have lost faith in politics to achieve anything meaningful.
Scott Morrison understands the importance of faith. He has also spent a lot of time thinking about trust in Australian politics and knows that the greatest weight he carries is his government’s breach of faith with the electorate.
After pledging in 2013 that the Coalition would put the “adults back in charge” it delivered as intemperate a bunch of toddlers that has ever been entrusted with the Treasury benches. All the Coalition had to do in its first term was to show that it was moderately competent and it could not manage even that.
So fucking much for women (ODT)
I’m not making it up.
Six days before the election, you launch your campaign. And on Mothers’ Day!
Still, I listened to Scott Morrison on 7:30. He didn’t answer the question about whether he’d have three ex-PMs at his launch preferring to tell Leigh Sales that he was more concerned with talking to the people… I’d take that as a no, personally.
Perhaps, Scott should have replied by suggesting that they couldn’t make it because it was Mother’s Day… although that may prompt someone to suggest so those mothers had to celebrate their special day elsewhere!
But is there a hidden motive behind the Murdoch media’s pro-Coalition frenzy? According to the Friends of the ABC, the secret agenda of News Corp and the Liberals is the post-election privatisation of the ABC.
Given the Coalition’s historical dislike of the national broadcaster, privatisation may well be the fate of the AB
Extremist groups are presenting themselves as legitimate entities in a way that threatens to reshape Australian politics
via The Poll Bludger
Politicising the Public Service
The AFP’s ties to the Coalition have almost turned our nation into a police state, using terrorism and immigration as political tools, writes Bruce Haigh.
AS THE HOWARD REGIME progressed, through time it perfected the art of smoke and mirrors, reaching the art of the ridiculous under Prime Minister Scott Morrison. Abbott and Turnbull made notable contributions.
Over this twenty-three year period, the politicisation of the public service and associated institutions has aided and abetted the show business of the LNP and, to a lesser extent, the Labor Party. We have seen the trashing of truth for political ends. As an example, sustained pressure from Howard saw the Bureau of Statistics decide that one hour of work a week constituted employment. By what flight of common sense did that become accepted? It is nonsense intended at the time to boost the LNP’s political fortunes.
“The information that’s been made available to the Senate inquiry directly by the department makes it very clear that these arrangements were conducted at complete arm’s length from any ministers,” Morrison said.
Calls mount for royal commission into controversial Murray-Darling water buybacks
He has also said it was the same as the process used by Labor.
Did Labor use the same process to buy water rights?
No. Under Labor, and during the first years of the Coalition government, water for the environment under the Murray-Darling Basin plan was either compulsorily acquired from farmers or it was purchased through an open tender process.