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The Bewdy!!! (Labor) mates way of doing deals in Queensland.

While Labor die-hards like our Ray are desperate to find flaws in Campbell Newman it won’t surprise anyone that when it comes to political corruption the ALP  have it right there embedded in their DNA. Nor will it be a surprise that when Anna Bligh decided to sell off the state’s “family silver” that the fine old tradition of favours to “Labor mates” would be the order of the day.

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Talk about snouts in the trough!

Its just another reason for my fellow Queenslanders to vote against Labor at the state election in a few weeks. They will  put the fear of God into the federal party as well which may not be such a good thing as it may panic them into doing a worse job of governing the country… Hmm Hang on a minute we are talking about the Gillard government shop here which has been playing like a bad  Demtel add since the last election, so maybe the Queensland result won’t make that much of a difference, after all once you hit bottom politically how much lower can they go?

  Cheers Comrades

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Q: How does the LNP snatch defeat from the jaws of victory?

Feeling a little 'red-faced', Campbell?

A: Give the leader’s job to this bloke

I’m reluctant to buy in so heavily on the Queensland election. For two reasons:

1) It’s no big deal who wins this unless you’re a Queenslander, and even then …

2) It’s Iain’s blog and I don’t want to upset him … too much.

Nonetheless, I think it really needs to be said: The appointment of an untested parliamentary outsider like Campbell Newman as opposition leader may yet backfire on the hybrid Queensland conservative party, that bears the oxymoron name of ‘The Liberal National Party’ (LNP).

Like, what were they thinking, and don’t they know that city councillors are often up to their necks in graft and corruption? Especially when it concerns giving dubious approvals to developers of high-rise buildings in heritage listed areas. And especially when it comes out that the developer gave a series of donations to Newman’s election fund via a string of related companies just weeks before the controversial approval was given … by a Brisbane City Council controlled by Liberal Party members including Newman, who was the mayor!

Does anyone hear alarm bells ringing? And is anyone reminded of the ‘brown paper bag’ days of Joh Bjelke Petersen, the last conservative Queensland Premier who, um, enjoyed a good relationship with certain (white-shoed) developers too?

Newman’s ‘excuse’ is that the approval was recommended by ‘independent’ town planners, so there’s nothing untoward in the councillors rubber-stamping what the planning staff put before them. Yeah, right. So the staff were beyond reproach too?

The fact is that councillors and staff usually meet in briefing sessions BEFORE any recommendations are made and BEFORE they are formally put up at a council meeting. It’s often the case that if a council makes it clear to their planners at these private meetings that they’re in favour (gung-ho in favour) of approval then the staff usually, um, adjust their thinking. After all, they value their jobs. No stand over tactics from Campbell though? No, he’s a saint.

And now it’s come out that Newman’s mayoral re-election fund manager (a mate, no doubt) received a 37 per cent cut of all donations over a two-year period. Wow, that’s generous:

Liberal National Party (LNP) leader Campbell Newman is still being dogged by questions about his re-election fund when he was Brisbane’s mayor.

The Australian newspaper is reporting the man who ran Mr Newman’s mayoral re-election fund received a 37 per cent cut of all donations over a two-year period.

The paper says donors were not aware his commission was so high.

Mr Newman was in the Brisbane seat of Mt Coot-tha this morning to announce increased teacher aide hours for 600 prep classes.

However, he refused to answer questions about the fund and threatened to end the media conference when he faced continued questions about his family’s financial interests.

“I’m going to wind this up if people don’t have questions about education,” he said.

He says the matters are all on the public record.

The LNP might still get out of this with a win. They’re well in front in the polls and Labor has had a pretty good innings up there since Joh’s demise. And, let’s face it, they just hate Gillard so much and now, after the second knifing of their favourite son Kevin Rudd, Queenslanders are probably going to vote along federal lines even more so than usual.

But … Newman might not be the Premier, as he still has to take a seat off a sitting ALP member with an 8% majority and maybe, just maybe, the people in that seat will think again.

I mean … would you buy a used car from this man?

Not even luck of the Irish will elect Jack O’Brien in Gregory

The farce that is Queensland Labor just gets  sillier as each day passes as my reliable source’s claims about the paucity of candidates put up by Anna Bligh becomes even more evident:

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Could you really have invented such a cynical grab for the taxpayer’s dollar?
because there can only be one reason for standing such a pointless candidate and that is to garner every possible stipend for the party after the votes have been counted.

Its not a case of can Labor win but one of how badly will they lose.judging by things like this my guess is that Labor faces a rout so severe that a telephone box will not need to have any Tardis qualities whatsoever to contain their party-room once the votes have been counted.
Cheers Comrades

Andrew Bolt inspires me to post this song as an Update:

Needs must when the devil drives Anna Bligh’s election bus

All political parties do it, they endorse dodgy oddballs to stand in seats that are essentially not winnable, these candidates are there just so the party can say that they are standing a candidate in every seat. For the Queensland state poll its the ALP’s turn to discover that they have endorsed a Neo-Nazi!

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Doesn’t he sound like such a fine upstanding young gentleman?
A racist and an anti-Semite!
No wonder he was so at home in the ALP!
Prior to the election I heard from a reliable source that the ALP were really struggling to get anyone to stand in their name at this election, frankly the selection of this young man is almost certain proof that my source was on to something with his suggestion.
Sadly its just another example of just why the ALP do not deserve to be re-elected to government because if they can’t get good people to stand for the party then they must be in even greater need for renewal than can be satisfied by one short term in opposition, I think that at least three maybe more terms in the wilderness will be enough for us to forget the stench of Labor ineptitude on the treasury benches…. Maybe not.
Cheers Comrades
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Anna Bligh, a Mark Latham moment, and the beginning of the end for the Queensland Labor Government.

I draw readers attention to the signs above the heads of Campbell and Tony, in the first instance it seems apt because Mr Newman is stuffing up Labor and making them sick and in the second its apt because Tony is offering pain relief to the Aussie people from Labor political ineptitude and the worst excesses of the NSW disease... In all a cute picture unless you barrack for the other team that is...

Of course I am looking forward to our state election up here, as much for its entertainment value as the fact that we will have the opportunity to to remove another bad governemnt from power. Oh the Bligh governemnt is not as bad as say Syria’s Assad but in Australian terms it certainly ain’t that grand. The way that she has been carrying on recently in the parliament does not bode well for the next few weeks of the official campaign but I frankly don’t expect anything better from a party that has been in control of the treasury benches for far too long and has, for want of a better description, totally lost the plot.

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We Queenslanders have had to wait a very long time for the conservative parties to get their act together enough to wrest government from Labor and I have high hopes that they will be successful this time around. If  the looks on the faces in the picture above are anything to go by the after the count party at Labor HQ will be a very grim affair indeed…

Lets enjoy the ride Comrades

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When will Rudd return?

I have reproduced this post from my home blog Alpine Opinion. It’s NOT about the Queensland election per se, which is a separate issue, but more regarding the likelihood that Kevin Rudd will use the Queensland election campaign to build a platform (or a higher platform) from which to make his bid to regain the Prime Ministership:

Bligh: "That's him, that's Campbell Newman over there." Rudd: "You mean that little runt? I can play him on a break."

The recent Australia Day kerfuffle in Canberra was not Prime Minister Julia Gillard’s fault. I’m sure she had no prior knowledge of – nor did she authorise – her adviser to stir up the aboriginal tent embassy protestors into an ugly mob that resulted in some dramatic, if not outright bizarre & embarrassing, footage of the PM being dragged, manhandled and groped by an AFP ‘minder’, who thought he’d find his 15 minutes of fame by acting as though someone had pulled a gun on his boss. They hadn’t, and I suggest that the PM (and Tony Abbott) could have merely walked to their cars surrounded and flanked by security, instead of the rather unedifying manner in which they were forced to look like prized scaredy cats … to the whole world.

Anyway, the upshot of it all is that it did Gillard’s re-election prospects no favours whatsoever. By contrast, Abbott actually suffers no such blemish, as it has emerged that a PM staffer did ‘the dirty work’ and that Tony Abbott’s words had in no way inflamed the protesters . Julia Gillard just can’t take a trick and seems to stumble (literally in this latest incident) from one disaster to another. Rightly or wrongly she is increasingly perceived as ‘dead person walking’, in a purely political sense of course.

The other thing that is becoming increasingly obvious is that Kevin Rudd, the man she unceremoniously deposed as PM just prior to the 2010 election, will at some stage make a challenge for the leadership. It’s now a case of ‘when’ not ‘if’ Rudd will seek to get his old job back. And he seems to have picked the perfect vehicle in joining Anna Bligh on her Queensland re-election campaign, as this Age article points out:

KEVIN Rudd will use the Queensland election campaign as the springboard for a renewed push to wrest the prime ministership back from Julia Gillard, Labor Party insiders predict.

The Foreign Minister, who represents the Brisbane seat of Griffith, promised he ”will help any campaign that they want me to” during the election, pitting Labor Premier Anna Bligh against former Brisbane lord mayor Campbell Newman, now Liberal National Party leader.

Labor insiders say Mr Rudd’s involvement in the campaign for the March 24 election is designed to boost his profile, highlight the disparity in popularity between the former and present prime ministers, remind his caucus colleagues how crucial Queensland is in the next federal election – and stoke leadership tensions.

… Mr Rudd isn’t expected to make a move on the leadership until after the poll, which Labor is tipped to lose badly.

The most recent Newspoll put it 12 percentage points behind the LNP on a two-party-preferred basis. ”If the result is very bad in Queensland for Labor, it will put enormous pressure on Julia Gillard,” a senior party figure said.

Okay, words from “insiders” (faceless people) don’t amount to much, but I’d suggest they’re probably spot on in this case. Think about it: Rudd is a Queenslander – the first ever Queensland PM – and didn’t they react violently (in voting terms) to Gillard’s knifing of him in the 2010 election? If it hadn’t been for Queensland, Labor would clearly have been returned in their own right with no reliance on the Greens, Windsor, Oakeshott and the flakey Andrew Wilkie. No need for a carbon tax. No need for pokie reforms and no need to break the deal and, once again, appear two-faced and untrustworthy. Rudd would be now heading for a 3rd term in my opinion.

And despite the Queensland opinion polls that put Anna Bligh well behind her LNP opposition, I reckon Kevin Rudd can make a difference and at least help to close the gap on Campbell Newman, the would-be-Premier who is not even a Parliamentarian yet – a weakness both Bligh & Rudd are sure to exploit. Bligh may well lose the election but either way I reckon Rudd will come out of it a winner.

And it’s for that reason that my prediction on the question posed by the heading to this post is this:

Kevin Rudd will challenge Julia Gillard for the leadership sometime in April this year. And he’ll win.

What do you think?

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Queensland Labor in the Wipeout zone

A Labor Member is pushed rather than jumping like nine out of fifty one have already done.

The outlook for Labor true believers up here in Queensland is rather grim as they watch the unedifying example of their state MPs deserting the sinking ship under the captaincy of Anna Bligh. The latest is Julie Attwood who cites the illness of her husband as the reason:

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Nine out of fifty-one! struth that’s a really bad set of numbers for Bligh and the election has not even started!

I was chatting to my brother other day and he was telling me that the reason that Bligh is putting off the election until the last possible moment is that Labor are having the hardest time imaginable finding anyone to put their hand up to be candidates for them at the next poll. Ponder than for just a moment, a major party with such bad prospects that it can’t put up enough candidates in every seat for the election. That is truly a party headed for the wipe out zone…

Cheers Comrades

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the ALP re-election committee on a bonding exercise

“Back in the body of the march will be the politicians, struggling to get noticed.”

I have actually marched in a labour day parade, with the International Socialists no less, but that was when I was young and rather foolish and in the time of Joh it made perfect sense. Now the Labour day march seems is  something of an anachronism. With Union membership in the most serious sort of decline it is probably just a matter of time before the whole event is cancelled lest the unions embarrass themselves by making public their own irrelevance.

So perhaps we should make the effort to go and watch the march because it may be the last one for a very long time when there are members of a Labor Government as part of the parade. Not that they are that welcome this time though , as Dennis Aitkins points out in today’s Courier mail:

ONCE WERE COMRADES: Children marching in the 1950 Labour Day parade. Source: The Courier-Mail

Back in the body of the march, which will assemble Monday morning at the corner of Wharf and Turbot streets, will be the politicians, struggling to get noticed.

While the organisers will say this is about honouring the traditions and history of the rail unions, it’s also about privatisation and the lingering bad blood in the Queensland Labor Party.

But as much as the internal grumblings of Queensland Labor will spill over into the march, those who do gather for the annual trade union jamboree should think about the coming year because it’s not going to get much better.

This time next year the Bligh Government will most likely be consigned to the Opposition benches unless the crazy brave Campbell Newman experiment blows itself up and the federal Labor Government will be struggling.

The outlook for the Gillard Government is bleak.

A primary vote in the low 30s shows no sign of reviving and a trio of diabolical political problems will beset federal Labor for the next year or so.

After the last national public poll was published putting Labor’s support at a 15-year low one senior party figure pondered the ALP’s fortunes.

“I can see a way out of this hole but not for about 18 months,” he said, desolately.

That trio of problems is the perils of pricing carbon, the pervasive influence of the Greens and the persistent presence of Kevin Rudd.

The people are not stupid and there was clearly a time when the union movement had a point but that was before the “common” people were such an important element in the prosperity of our economy. These days it is the consumption of goods by the people who make them that is an essential part of the world’s economy so there is balance to be sought by employers and those who run our industries. If the workers are not paid enough so that they can be effective consumers then the whole world economy will collapse and if they are paid too much then the individual enterprises that make up our economy will fail. There is a clear codependency between  all parties involved here. This is something that I have been watching for years and this has to be recognised by organised labour as much as it has to be recognised by the leaders of industry. I tend to think that viscerally the working public recognise this fact which is why union membership is considered so optional these days.

Anyway lets see what sort of reception the March gets tomorrow, I’m guessing that it will be rather  like the curates egg or maybe a swan song…

Cheers Comrades

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