Victorian Labor looks to Government as hung Legislative Council likely: @takvera on #vicvotes

As we enter the final days of the Victorian election campaign the polls show Labor headed for Government with a possible majority of 8 seats. But like all elections there will be expected wins and losses and some surprises. The result is never guaranteed. There is even a possibility of a hung parliament with the Greens having the balance of power in the Legislative Assembly. Labor needs to win seats in south-eastern Melbourne and bayside suburbs such as Carrum, Frankston, Bentleigh and Mordialloc where transport and education are important. Also in play are marginal Liberal seats on the north-eastern fringe of Melbourne like Yan Yean and Monbulk where the Great […]

ANZ Bank HQ in Melbourne occupied by #ClimateWarriors: @Takvera

The Pacific Climate Warriors travelled to Melbourne today and were part of an occupation of the lobby of the Headquarters of the ANZ Bank. Over eighty people participated standing in solidarity with Pacific Islanders whose homes and cultures are being destroyed by fossil fuel expansion. Last week the Climate Warriors visited Whitehaven Coal’s Maules Creek coal mine near Narrabri and saw the destruction first hand of the Leard State forest where coal is extracted. Read my report of Pacific Climate Warriors joining the Leard blockade protesting coal and climate change They also visited and blockaded Newcastle coal port on Friday 17 October, pitting their traditional canoes against the huge coal […]

Labor and Liberal no show at #vicvotes Coburg Fair Food Forum reports @Takvera

For Fair Food week at Coburg Farmers Market a forum was held to discuss food and agriculture in the context of the Victorian state election on 29th November 29 2014. After all, food is an essential ingredient in our economy, our culture and society. It is something we all consume and relate to. Yet neither of the major parties provided a candidate from two electorates to attend this forum. All candidates for the seats of Brunswick and Pascoe Vale who had so far committed to stand were invited to speak. If you remember the Federal Election last year many novice Liberal candidates went to ground and refused to appear in […]

Protestors #floodpolluters – AGL Energy occupied in Melbourne @Takvera reports

Over 60 people occupied the AGL Energy head office in Melbourne this morning siting down on the 23rd floor offices of this energy producer and retailer. Several people locked themselves together on the 23rd floor. A number of climate guardian angels locked on to the front doors at street level. Why were they there? AGL Energy, once regarded as a relatively green and environmentally friendly electricity producer, has in recent years bought and accumulated assets in black and brown coal generation and coal seam gas exploration. It is now a major source and polluter of carbon emissions. Along with it’s transformation into a major carbon polluting company, it has also […]

East West Link dominates #vicvotes transport forum reports @Takvera

Transport continues to be a major issue in the Victorian election campaign in the lead up to polling day on November 29, especially in regard to the East West Link project. On Monday afternoon, 29 September, the Premier Denis Napthine and Transport Minister Terry Mulder signed the contracts with Lend lease for the East West Connect Consortium to start the $8 billion phase one East West project to connect the Eastern Freeway with the Citylink tollway through inner urban suburbs and Royal Park. This is Victoria’s most expensive infrastructure project ever undertaken, and it is being done with contracts signed just 60 days from the election, 30 days before the […]

Australia is a climate leaner, not a lifter: @takvera comments on #Climate2014

Australia’s Foreign Affairs Minister Julie Bishop took the podium at the United Nations Climate Summit to an almost empty plenary to announce Australia was balancing economic growth with climate action, with a 5 per cent cut based on 2000 levels by 2020 using $2.55 billion to fund emission reductions under the government’s Direct Action Plan. (Read speech) Two photos tell the story of her address to this climate summit, of the vast gap between the government’s rhetoric and actual action. The first is the more flattering image the Abbott Government would prefer you to see tweeted by Australia’s ambassador and permanent representative to the United Nations Gary Quinlan: The second […]

Greens increasing pressure on Thomson in Wills reports @takvera

By John Englart 4 September 2013 I was recruited by Margo to cover the election in the safe Labor seat of Wills (Seat Profile) in mid July. After writing 21 articles I suspect I have put in far more time and work than some of the candidates. We are at the point in Wills where the Green vote may overtake the Liberal vote for the first time. The Greens are beginning to challenge Labor. The campaign was marked by the absence of Liberal candidate Shilpa Hegde from all public forums and interviews. Surely the Liberal Party doesn’t expect people to vote for a candidate who doesn’t even attempt to engage […]

Public transport versus east-west link tollroad issue in Melbourne electorates reports @takvera

By John Englart 30 August 2013 The Victorian Government is proceeding with the East-West link tunnel tollroad which would connect up the Eastern Freeway and Alexandra Parade to Citylink severely impacting Royal Park and Moonee Ponds Creek. It is an $8 billion project with high impacts on the seat of Melbourne, but also traffic and environmental impacts in Wills. It comes at a time when several rail infrastructure projects need to be built to upgrade and renew the ailing public transport network to cope with Melbourne’s booming population. Population boom: why we need Doncaster rail, Mernda ext, + more PT, not east-west link @Vic_Premier #trainsnottolls http://t.co/GFqDBDRF7t — Frere Tak (@takvera) […]

Wills Forum ends with call for compassion and decency to be reclaimed in politics reports @takvera

By John Englart 1 September 2013 The 3rd and final meet the candidates forum for Wills was hosted by the Brunswick Uniting Church on Friday night. Five candidates attended to present their policies and to take questions from a moderator and from the audience. But it was the very last response to the very last audience question that struck a responsive chord from all present. The question was “What can we look forward to under a Tony Abbott Government for Wills?” Candidates on the panel included Adrian Trajstman (Sex Party), Tim Read (Greens), Kelvin Thomson MP (ALP), Margarita Windisch (Socialist Alliance). Philip Sutton (Save the Planet party) was a late […]

Dean O’Callaghan brews beer to save the planet in Wills: Interview by @Takvera

By John Englart 29 August 2013 Meet Dean O’Callaghan, or Deano Goodbrew, as he is known around the streets of Moreland in Melbourne’s inner north. He is standing as the only Independent in the seat of Wills. Dean runs a small sustainable business called the Goodbrew company. “That is my bread and butter. I started the Goodbrew Company in 2007 and it’s a business set up to make beer, events and social gatherings. In general to be wholly sustainable. So I put solar panels on brews, kegs on bicycles and ride to socially and environmentally aware events and I pour drinks into composting cups. People dig it. That’s my job,” […]