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Why Ray is wrong


This post is in response to Ray’s post today. Now Ray is a nice bloke, but I think he’s wrong for the reasons that follow.

Firstly, Ray contradicts himself. On the one hand he writes that:

And that – the economy, stupid – is why I say: Labor deserves another term.

Yet, later in his post he declares that:

If Labor loses (and I can’t see how they won’t) then in my opinion they deserve to lose … due to their failure to come across as a stable and united party.

Well which is it? Does Labor deserve to win or not? To be fair, I think what Ray was trying to say that based on Labor’s policy achievements it deserved to win but based on its infighting it does not. I disagree with this position as well because the record shows that Labor’s performance has been absolutely dismal. Consider the following massive policy disasters:

– Labor has wasted billions of dollars on pink batts, overpriced school halls, massive subsidies to the highly unionised car industry, overpriced set top boxes, carbon tax compensation, a larger public service, the climate change department, green schemes, foreign aid directed at getting us on the security council, and so on.

– Labor put the people smugglers back in business, causing 50,000 boat arrivals, over 1,000 drownings, billions wasted on having detention facilities packed with new arrivals and more billions on welfare bills in the future.

– Labor has achieved six consecutive budget deficits. The reason why is because Labor has greatly increased government spending. Now that the mining boom is fading, we are finding we are deeply in structural deficit. The only reason we don’t have a massive debt problem yet is because the government inherited a very strong position when it took office in 2007.

– Labor gave us a carbon tax even though it promised that it wouldn’t at the last election. This tax has increased inefficiency in the Australian economy, leading to slower growth and higher unemployment.

– Labor has introduced massive new regulation in many sectors, including the labour market, childcare, and the bank sector. Naturally, businesses pass these regulatory costs onto the hapless consumer. Moreover, such excessive regulation creates economic inefficiencies that end up costing jobs.

– Labor bungled the mining tax. The tax has damaged Australia’s reputation internationally as a place to do business, has reduced business confidence here and in the end raised virtually no revenue.

I could go on but you get the picture. This government has been a disaster for the nation. They have done so much to harm Australia it is little wonder that people have no faith in them and are going to chuck them out tomorrow.

Naturally, Ray’s post ignores the above disasters. Anyone saying that Labor deserves re-election would have to. The more you list the facts, the more it becomes obvious that Labor deserves to lose.

In support of his argument, Ray claims Labor has managed the economy well. How laughable. The reality is of course the opposite. Macroeconomically, Labor has failed because all six of its budgets have been big deficits, and now spending in the budget is completely out of control. When it comes to microeconomics, this government’s carbon tax, excessive regulation of the economy and favours for its union mates means that it has made the economy more inefficient than when it took office. Labor’s economic record is a complete fail. The reasons why we are doing better than more of the rest of the world have nothing to do with this government.

Make no mistake: Labor deserves to lose. The Coalition may not be perfect, but they have done enough to show that they deserve a chance to make things better.


  1. Ray Dixon says:

    Hi Leon, long time no hear from. A few questions if you don’t mind:

    1. Where have you been? I can’t remember the last time you even commented here let alone wrote a post. Popping up on election eve is like a sneak attack, mate.

    2. I don’t begrudge your right for one second to hold a contrary opinion to mine and to write a post about your take on the election. But heading it “Why Ray is wrong” and making it all about my post seems a bit O-T-T. If you have queries on what I wrote and put up just a few hours earlier wouldn’t the normal (and polite) thing be to post your comments about my post on … my post?

    3. What’s the point of claiming I made a contradiction, asking me “which is it” and then answering your own question? You’re right (eventually) – there is no contradiction in saying Labor deserves to win on its economic record but “IF” it loses it will be due to its leadership battles and in that case they deserve to lose.

    4. Why a post about my post? A few hours apart? More originality than that is required, Mr Bertrand, or were you just trying to divert comment? You know, appealling to the other coalition cheerleaders here.

    Thanks for that.

  2. Leon Bertrand says:

    Hi Ray,

    I’ve been a bit busy, and haven’t had the blogging passion lately, but it’s good to be back.

    The reason why I have made it all about your post is because I read your post this afternoon and really wanted to make a post of my own in response. I wouldn’t have blogged tonight if you hadn’t!

  3. Leon Bertrand says:

    By the way, Here’s some good commentary on that ridiculous editorial by The Economist: http://www.thesydneyinstitute.com.au/media-watch-dog/

  4. Richard Ryan says:

    ” It’s not the vote that counts, but how the vote is counted”

  5. GD says:

    Ah, sweet voice of reason..

    Thank you, Leon

  6. Iain Hall says:

    And a very big thank you from me as well Leon for putting succinctly that which I could not have articulated without huge dollops of sarcasm and mockery. I’m really looking forward to casting my ballot today and then the count tonight should be a real delight for any political tragic. My only question is how long will Rudd wait before he concedes? I reckon it will be before 8.30 but who knows, he may wallow in denial for much longer than that.

  7. Leon Bertrand says:

    No I think Rudd has known for some time he’s toast. I’m sure he only accepted the leadership again because he thought he could win. However, now he knows he’s been played by the party, which only installed him to save the furniture.

  8. […] infighting or ‘blowing in the wind’ they would have been a good government, in spite of the many Labor policy failures I outlined in my last post. Talk about looking at the most superficial things rather than […]

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