A few weeks ago I wrote a letter of support to a political candidate. Here’s how this exciting series of events unfolded.
Nailing My Colours
We have a state election in Queensland on 31 January.
I’ve decided to support the Greens, even though I’ve been a conservative voter for the last 30 years, own a small business, and care about our economy.
I could give you a long manifesto about why I’ve come to this decision, but I’ll keep it simple:
For the last six years I’ve immersed myself in the environment of South East Queensland. My bicycle tyre tracks are all over it. You can read more about that here. That experience has changed me. To misquote the old hymn,
When through the woods and forest glades I wander
And hear the birds sing sweetly in the trees,
When I look down from lofty mountain grandeur,
And hear the brook and feel the gentle breeze:
…. then I must do something about it. I can’t stand idly by and let property developers and miners consume it all.
I love where I live. I don’t want to see it destroyed in the name of profit.
The “conservative” me from a few decades ago would probably quip – “But what about the cost? Don’t you want lower taxes and less government intervention?”.
In short, the answer is “No”. I think from a tax perspective, we get an absolute bargain for the life we live. We have awesome hospitals, great public schools, and a great way of life. I’d be willing support higher taxes if that mean protecting this way of life. And to ask for “less government intervention” is naive. One of the responsibilities of government should be to protect what we have. Reducing the influence of government on corporations makes it easier for those corporations to gobble up our environmental heritage and convert it into profits.
So the bottom line for me: I love this place, and I want to protect it.
I have one request of the Greens: Get more involved with local politics. I understand your desire to elect members to the Senate. But much of the damage to our environment is done because of State and Local Government laws – not Federal laws. Voters might feel “tribal” about Federal issues, but they quickly drop their political affiliation when a state or local government decision affects bushland in their street, or a CSG site on their farm.
The most powerful politics is local – because that’s where we live.
Why I think the ALP will win this election
Last election I predicted the Coalition would win the election, and I was wrong 🙂
This time, although I hope I’m wrong, I think the ALP will win with a reduced majority of 5 to 10 seats.
I believe the people will not vote in a Coalition Government this election for one simple reason. Tony Abbott has failed to outline his vision for Australia.
He’s told us all how bad the ALP is, and how wrong their policies are, and why we can’t trust them. He’s probably right.
But I think voters want a prospective leader to do more. We want to know what a leader is passionate about. Where do they want to take us? What is the burning dream in their heart that drives them? What makes their face light up with enthusiasm and say “This is what it’s all about – follow me and I’ll take you there!!!!”. The prime example in recent memory was Barack Obama (“Yes we can!”) in 2008. Tony Abbott hasn’t done this.
Which makes me ask “Why hasn’t he?”. Either he doesn’t have a burning dream inside, or he (or his minders) decided to just run a negative campaign hoping we’d vote Labor out rather than vote him in.
It’s sad – the ALP has some pretty shonky policies on new taxes (Mining Tax, Carbon Tax etc), the internet filter, and borrowing to spend huge amounts of money on public projects. And the Coalition’s failure to enunciate its vision means the ALP is going to get a chance to implement these policies over the next three years.
There’s a non-political lesson in this for all of us. Find out what you love, what you’re passionate about, and go for it with all your heart. BE passionate about something. You’ll generate an energy which will attract followers, and you’ll get something worthwhile done, and have fun at the same time.
Or…. find something you don’t like, and complain about it, and tell everyone how bad it is.
I know which one I’d rather do!
Chalk and cheese
Despite the “me too” garbage from Mr Dudd and his comrades, the differences between the Coalition and the ALP are like chalk and cheese.
Click on the thumbnail below for a quick summary of the major performance indicators for both parties.
The difference between our current prosperity, and what we’d lose under a one party Labor State couldn’t be starker.
A Coalition win by 5 seats
That’s my prediction for Saturday.
There won’t be a uniform swing, and while the ALP will pick up some seats, it will also lose one or two.
Call it wishful thinnking if you like, but I like to think that most Australians aren’t going to get duped by “Mr Me Too”, aka Kevin Dudd.
If I am right, most of the Australian media are going to look like a bunch of idiots and will have a bucketload of egg on their faces.
If I am right, someone needs to ask who paid whom to get such blatantly biased reporting from all streams of media including the ABC.
Of course, it’s just my prediction, and it flies in the face of all the opinion polls, and all the “wisdom” of pundits who claim to be smarter than me.
But I hope I am right.
You need more to govern this country than a twerpy smirk and a photocopier for stealing economic policies. Mr Dudd just doesn’t cut it.
Oh – one other thing, if I am right, I promise to post some priceless photos of the look on the faces of Kevin Dudd, Julia Dullard and Wayne Conn.
Beware the Chameleon
Say it once, and you could be excused for thinking it was just a gaffe by an inexperienced wannabe.
Say it twice, and you remove all doubt.
Now Charles Wooley has heard Garrett saying the same thing:
“Peter Garrett agreed, he intimated that ‘What we say in Opposition might not be what happens in Government.”’
Read the article for yourself here.
Rudd and his shadow ministry are fakes. They are telling you what you want to hear because they want your vote. In areas where they’re clueless (such as the economy) their photocopiers have been working overtime on their “Echo-nomic”, Me-Too policies.
But when you really put them under the miroscope, Garrett’s comments say it all: “We’re just pulling your leg now. It will all change once we get elected”.
It’s par for the course, isn’t it? Check out what Garrett used to say on American military bases in Australia, or on the Tasmanian Pulp Mill. Now check out what he’s saying now. He (like most of the Labor front bench) has more positions on this stuff than the Kama Sutra.
Their lips are moving, but I can’t hear anything meaningful coming out of their mouths.
You may not agree with everything he says, but at least when John Howard say’s he’s going to do something, he does it. He’s the real deal.
Rudd is just a fake.
Not till you see the whites of their eyes
I think John Howard should wait a while before calling the election.
A section of Australian voters are still infatuated with Kevin (“me-too”) Rudd, who seems anxious to get this election in the bag while he still has a large lead in the polls.
The next few weeks will increase in intensity, and show up flaws in the conga-line of “wannabes” that are following Kev around. See for example Robert McLelland’s gaffe on going easy on terrorists, or Peter Garret’s hypocrisy about the Tasmanian Pulp Mill. In fact if you scratch more closely at any of the Labor front bench, it’s easy to see the amateurish cracks in the facade that is “Kev 07”.
John Howard should take a leaf out of Neville Wran’s book, who espoused the idea of applying the “blowtorch to the belly” of his oponents – keeping the heat on them to really see what they’re made of.
It’s only when the heat is on, when the pressure is unbearable, when they wish the blowtorch would go away, that you really get to see what someone is made of.
Take your time, Mr Howard. Keep the heat on. The Rudd facade will slowly melt away, until it’s pretty obvious to everyone that Emporer Kev isn’t really wearing any new clothes at all.
WYSIWYG or “What you see is what you get” is an important attribute in politics.
Why vote for someone who appears to support one thing, only to find that after they get elected they’re totally different to what you expected? That would be a disaster.
I will be voting for John Howard at the next election because he is definately WYSIWYG. You definately know where this man stands. He is predictable. You know what he’s going to do.
I don’t agree with everything he’s done, but I know when he says he’s going to do something, he’ll do it.
Kevin Rudd is the opposite. He’s Mr “Me too”, presenting himself as a clayton’s opposition leader. Mimicking the Prime Minister on vital issues like Economy (“Echo-Nomics”), Foreign Policy, Taxation and Indiginous Affairs, he tries to present a “not too scarey” version of the Labor Party that isn’t going to frighen the voters, while placating the left with platitudes about Climate Change, Iraq, and (of course) Industrial Relations.
I.e. they dont’ really stand for anything (especially if it’s unpopular). All they want to do is get elected.
But ask yourself this. Why would the Labor Party want to get into office if they were just going to mimick the Liberals?
There’s only one answer – they’re definately NOT WYSIWYG. They want your vote, and they’ll dress up in sheeps clothing so you can’t see the wolf.
If you’re not convinced, check out the conga line behind Kevin Rudd – the ones who he wants to make ministers in his government:
Deputy prime Minister and Minister for Industrial relations: Julia Gillard, former student radical and AUS president
Treasurer: Wayne Swan, former ALP state secretary
Attorney general: Joe Ludwig, former AWU official
Minister for Trade: Simon Crean, former president, ACTU
Minister for Transport and Tourism: Martin Ferguson, former president, ACTU
Minister for Finance: Lindsay Tanner, former state secretary, Federated Clerk’s Union
Minister for Environment and the Arts: Peter Garrett, lifelong anti-American activist
Minister for Infrastructure and Water: Anthony Albanese. Former assistant general secretary, NSW ALP
Minister for Human Services: Tanya Plibersek, former student union official, UTS
Minister for Immigration: Tony Burke, former official Shop Distributive and Allied Employees Union
Minister for Resources: Chris Evans, former official Miscellaneous Workers’ Union
Minister for Veterans’ Affairs: Alan Griffin, former official Federated Clerks Union
Minister for Primary Industry: Kerry O’Brien, former official Miscellaneous Workers’ Union
Minister for Superannuation: Nick Sherry, former state secretary, Federated Liquor and Allied Trades Union
Minister for Sport: Kate Lundy, former official CFMEU.
And waiting in the wings are:
Greg Combet, candidate for Charlton and former ACTU president
Doug Cameron, NSW Senate candidate and secretary of Australian Manufacturing Workers’ Union
Bill Shorten: candidate for Maribyrnong and national secretary, Australian Workers’ Union
Richard Marles: candidate for Corio and former assistant secretary, Transport Workers Union.
Get the idea?
A vote for Kevvie is a vote for the ACTU – government of the People, for the Unions, by the Unions.
That’s what you get – but it’s not what you saw. Sort of like the opposite of WYSIWYG.
Kev07? Not bloody likely.