Labor must not let polls distract from party reform: @e2mq173 comments






Labor has every reason to be pleased with the opinion polls. The Abbott government is now the worst-performing first-term federal government in history, and would face an embarrassing defeat if it were foolish enough to use a double dissolution to force its draconian budget through the Senate. Similarly, Victorian Premier Denis Napthine leads a deeply unpopular first-term coalition government in Victoria. It looks increasingly likely that his government will be shown the door at the state election in November. The resounding victory over the weekend for Labor in the state seat of Stafford, suggests when Queensland returns to the polls, Campbell Newman’s LNP government will sustain heavy losses – retreating from […]






The conservatives are back in charge, @DrCraigEmerson comments on brutal #budget2014






  If ever there were any doubts about the difference in values between conservative and progressive Australian governments they were laid to rest by the Abbott Government’s first Budget. It was the pernicious embodiment of conservative philosophy: treat the poor and vulnerable as malingerers while going easy on wealthy backers; and, in order to maintain their view of the natural order of society, deny opportunity to the disadvantaged who cannot improve their life chances without some government support. Increasing the eligibility age for the pension is targeted directly at the most vulnerable. Life expectancy has increased over recent decades, but overwhelmingly it’s been for the better off. Wealthy Australians can […]






Reading the #WAvotes tea leaves: @sarah_capper






  Following an Australian Electoral Commission bungle after the federal Senate count last September, West Australians were forced back to the polls earlier this month, in what was supposed to represent either an endorsement for Tony Abbott’s Government and policies – or it would instead show an improvement in Labor’s poor vote in the state last September and suggest the opposition was on the right track. It did neither. Neither of the major parties truly succeeded in their campaigns, both losing around 5 per cent of their share from the September result. This desertion of voters from both major parties went to The Greens and the Palmer United minor parties – The Greens up […]






The killing of fair play: @Jansant comments on what the ALP has lost






  I used to be proud of being born and raised in Balmain, the spiritual home of the Australian Labor Party (ALP). The area has produced and attracted some of the greatest names in Australian history, people of politics like Sir Henry Parkes, Tom Uren, Neville Wran and Herbert Vere ‘H.V.’ Evatt (aka Doc Evatt), and sporting heroes like Dawn Fraser and Wayne Pearce. Pearce went to the same primary school as me but was a few years older. He played rugby league for Balmain Police Boys as a child. By the time he was about 12 or 13 years old, no-one who knew him had any doubt he would […]






A journey to independence via Young Libs, Greens and a close call with ALP






By Su Dharmapala July 31, 2013 My first article last week about Deakin – Labor’s second most marginal seat – was met with predictable howls of foul play from the twitterati. “She is an ALP stooge, can’t believe a word she says,” they screamed. Okay, so it was single howl and not particularly loud, but still I heard it and it is time I best set the record straight. I am not a member of the ALP. I have never been an ALP member. See, I took out my credit card out to pay the membership fee about three months ago, but when I checked my bank balance, I thought […]






A permanent Labor-Greens alliance: A radical idea to save Labor






By Scott Williams 26 June 2013 Review of Why Labor should savour its Greens (Scribe, 2013) I have never been a student of politics or economics. My interest in politics has usually revolved around shouting at Q&A and making attempts at humorous troll baiting on the Twitter #auspol hashtag. Most of my reading is of the sci-fi and fantasy fiction type. I’m just a voter trying to make sense of the mess that politics seems to be today. So imagine my surprise when I found myself volunteering to do a book review on a politically oriented piece of non-fiction. The preface starts by summarising the author’s personal experiences and general […]






Roxon reflections






by Nicola Roxon 18 June 2013 Hansard source On indulgence—I intend to start this speech rather than finish it with my personal thanks, because I think they are the easy ones to miss at the end in a rush. All that we as politicians can achieve for the community fundamentally relies on a lot of other people. Families, friends and staff help us, support us, sooth us and share our triumphs. I have been incredibly blessed on all of those fronts: a wonderful mother and sisters, the best staff imaginable—a number of them are here today; you can see that getting this out early is a good idea—and, of course, […]






I want to vote Labor – give me a reason!






By Noely Neate March 25, 2013 Every  man and his dog has given up Labor as a dead loss for the election in September.  I am not so sure. John Howard was pretty much in that position at one stage. and it was only the intervention of  Tampa and Twin Towers Towers that saved his butt.  The fact is that when people are scared they stay with the ‘devil they know’.  Now, I don’t wish the likes of a Twin Towers to save the Labor Party, though a bit more focus on Tony Abbott’s policies may help level the playing field so that people could get past personalities to actually […]






The view from Rooty Hill on last week’s invasion






By Pascal Grosvenor March11, 2013 I attended St Agnes high school at Rooty Hill from years 7 to 10.  I went to Loyola College next to the RSL in years 11 and 12.  My mother still lives in Rooty Hill, and my grandmother lived in the Catholic nursing home next to St Agnes for quite some years before she passed away. I want to give a personal account of the last week at Rooty Hill and offer my reflections and opinions on what took place. The PM’s week in Western Sydney was in essence a mini-campaign launched by her speech to Labor faithful on Sunday night. It was a tightly […]






The round-up: For whom the poll ticks






By Sarah Capper, Sheilas Editor VOTER support for Labor has jumped to its strongest levels since the last election to put the federal government within striking distance of the Coalition … This story appeared not two years ago, not six months ago, but less than six weeks ago, on 15 January, 2013 (in The Australian newspaper, ‘Labor starts poll year with bounce: Newspoll’ by David Crowe). Fast forward six weeks and it’s an entirely different story, with the mainstream media’s coverage on the federal Government’s opinion poll fortunes as being incredibly dire, with doom and gloom scenarios abounding – the resurrecting of has-been Kevin Rudd leadership challenge possibilities, with commentators once […]