Australian Politics, Mark II


There have been so many times that I have been on the verge of PM’ing you to ask your opinion on a couple of political issues.
Vanders is venting a perception that is happening across the western political landscape. People are under the impression (true or not) that a) we now have a political class that is divorced from the the constituency at large b) this political class is more sensitive and respondent to financial backers than to the needs to the constituency. As you indicated this may be more perception that actual. However events such as the recent ructions in the Liberal party seem to give credence to this view.
In your response to Vanders you talk about some poor decisions. Whatever you think about people like Abbott, Shorten, Turnbull, Gillard, these are well educated and clever people otherwise they wouldn’t get to the positions they are in. Thats what makes you wonder about he lack of evidence based policy and gives rise to suspicions about what is driving politics.


I hate all the Media and my responses are skewed somewhat with this personal prejudice. Public views are so warped by what the media lets us see.

For me, there are two distinct parts of Australian Politics, one is the policy agendas of each party and how they action this when in Government. Predominately both Labor and Liberal have policy to take our Nation forward, and the difference is the emphasis on who it helps most and how this is given, and I see every day how MPs work hard to “do good” and I commend them for this. I am a socialist at heart and Labor is more closely aligned, so they are my choice. I cannot follow the Liberal Ideology of letting many just fall through the cracks because they do not get the help they need.

But then there is the other side of Politics, which is the unashamed vote grabbing and the need to win power by any means. This often shows up as compromising principles and getting into bed with groups who are driven by self-interest. Labor in my view does this with Catholic Education, Libs do this with mining and large corporations and the Greens do this with the Renewable Energy industry; and there are other examples. Many of my Labor mates will argue that the means justifies the end, so getting into power is worth selling your soul; I am a ideological purist and would rather lose than be dishonest.

I would argue that if Political Parties keep all their leadership business in house and didn’t let the media know, then they could change Leader without the public angst and any blood split would have been cleansed. It does no-one any good for all the details of how the votes went and who promised what to who, to be front page. This is what screws our view of pollies. In Labors case, the media rant on about Factions, and the internals ructions they cause. In fact, Factions in the ALP and the Libs create cohesion and without them party politics just falls over.

If we talk about corruption, then let’s use Matthew Guy as an example. In the Ventor case, he made a poor decision to grant a permit and had to back down under pressure from various places, so to make it go away and stop legal action the payout of $3.5 million was made to the landowners, based on advice he was given by others. Maybe another poor decision, and because these landowners were in some respects aligned to the Libs, media and others call corruption.

My Mate, Daniel Andrews told me personally that dropping the Eastern Freeway would not cost any money and they would tough it out in any legal battle. He made this decision based on advice from others, which turned out wrong, and it cost a lot more than $3.5 million, but was not seen as corruption.

My other Mate, Don Nardella, moved house to live in a caravan park in Ocean Grove, and claimed over $100,000 in allowances. He sought advice from the Administrators on this before he put in a claim, and was told it was legal and proper. If he had asked me, he would have got the same response as my mates in the pub gave, that it was a farking rort and he should know better. Again he took advice that was wrong, and it was not corruption, just very stupid.

I would argue that while I hold most Politicians in very high regard, they are typically reflective of our Society, and some are smart and others not so clever. Most are very careful with public money and seek advice from others, but often this advice is poor, and they still take it.

I am not a fan of our Westminster parliamentary democracy. I would prefer a system where the brightest and best run the place for the good of all. Just what constitutes the brightest and best is the hard thing to work out.


You were going well until your last line.

A Trump or equivalent would only exponentially increase incompetence and corruption.


We’ve had our trump moment several time over.

Hanson times at least two
Clive Palmer

Our parties don’t allow for an outsider to take over the party like open primaries in the states. Thus our Trumps are only ever fringe parties.


Trump moment is in reference to a complete rejection of the establishment(if you can call the Canberra sess pool that).

Doesnt necessarily follow that it will be someone with his politics.


Still Palmer, though!
He rejected the establishment so much, he didn’t even turn up.
Which is also very Trump.


Exactly. It’s a grubby closed shop.

Full of university ‘career’ politicians, paid for by either the big banks, big mining/energy, industry super or the union movement. And if they don’t know it, they find out fast. (if they read their ‘policies’)

Makes me vomit.


Magically jumped 12 or is it 15 points in 5 days or so, :roll_eyes: nah,… then again, … he did say how good is Millman? twice, using he word “mate” 3 times in 30 seconds and gave 2 thumbs,… all while wearing said baseball cap, and clearly having never heard of Millman, … so maybe.


Biggest problem with Australian Politics is the media, pure and simple, it dictates political discourse, skewing public perception and therefore the politicians.

Then it would be influence of money and ‘lobbyist’ on pollies.


Someone said the reason the preferred PM is allways higher than the opposition is that some people are pretty dumb and hear the question as who is the PM.

I’m not sure that this isn’t correct.


I think I’ve seen him at every sporting event that has happened in this country since he became PM, a true man of the people


Strong strong strong agree

I heard an interview the other week where some was saying that Canberra types place a fair bit of value in what is being said on the ABC and Sky news channels as that is what the public is thinking/seeing.

I also remember reading that Sky news average prime time viewer numbers are about 30,000.

I mean ffs

-edit- Not enough happens in Australia to warrant a 24 hour news cycle.


The young Fletch clone on Gogglebox said that since twitter started, no Australian PM has served a full term.


# Royal commission: Australia’s biggest insurers admit to misleading claims, coercing customers into signing up to policies

The latest round of the royal commission has begun with a long list of confessions from insurance companies - from misleading claims to coercing customers into signing up to policies.

Insurers including AIA, Allianz, AMP, CommInsure, IAG, MLC, ANZ’s OnePath and Suncorp owned up to a slew of bad behaviour over the past decade.

The first company in the commission’s firing line, ASX-listed insurer ClearView Wealth, disclosed 225 instances of misconduct or conduct falling below community standards in its life insurance business - including one instance of false and misleading information being provided to a customer.

ClearView said another customer was coerced into taking out a policy.

ClearView and Freedom Insurance Group will be examined over their sales practices, including unsolicited sales calls.

Meanwhile, major insurer QBE did not admit to any misconduct or behaviour falling short of community expectations - instead outlining a number of ‘issues’, including selling add-on car insurance that was of little or no use to customers.

“Its gap protection and consumer credit insurance products have been sold through car dealerships in circumstances where there might not have been a gap between the insured value of the car and the loan balance, where the customer had paid a large deposit for the car, where the cover may have duplicated existing cover, or the cover may have provided more insurance than was necessary,” said Rowena Orr QC, senior counsel assisting the commission.

QBE estimates that more than 28,000 customers will be paid $15.9 million in remediation.

Delivering her opening statement, Ms Orr said more than 110 witness statements would be submitted as evidence over the next fortnight.

## $6 billion pay day for advisers selling life insurance

The first week of hearings will be dominated by life insurance, with sales tactics, poor product design and the claims handling process flagged as lines of inquiry.

The commission has received more than 8,700 public submissions - 681 of which relate to life insurance.

Ms Orr said the treatment of mental health and pre-existing conditions featured in a significant number of those submissions.

“Common themes in the submissions addressing mental health are consumer experiences in being denied coverage or benefit on the basis of mental health exclusions, excessive premiums being charged where mental health issues are disclosed, claims of mental health conditions being exacerbated as a result of claims handling processes, and concerns over independent medical examinations,” Ms Orr said.

The inquiry heard certain life insurance products were exempt from a ban on conflicted remuneration until the start of this year, when caps were introduced.

Ms Orr said 10 major life insurers had paid more than $6 billion in commissions to financial advisers over a five-year period.

“As the cap on upfront commissions continues to reduce over the next few years, it remains to be seen whether this will be reflected in the premiums paid by customers,” she said.


SkyNews(FoxNews) does no real damage, unless you watch it, which thankfully not many do in this country.

The mainstream TV guys 7, 9 and even 10 are the pits though, they’re barely even subtle these days. For all the crap the ABC gets about being ‘left-wing’ they do what news should do, proper journalism, they actually question what the politicians say and use evidence to put things in context - if it appears they have a left-wing bias it’s not the ABC’s fault


It really is a bit bewildering no one has started a Banking Royal Comm thread on blitz yet, isn’t it?

Truckloads of posting and venting fodder out of this thing so far, … and no doubt much more to come.


I honestly don’t think the public is even paying attention.

Oh the banks are dodgy, they allready suspected as much.

Ask someone to name any specifics I reckon you would get donuts.


Want to know what an adviser (not working directly for a bank) gets paid for writing insurance?

Generally there are 3 commission types. Upfront, Hybrid and Level.

So upfront is generally 90% of premium of the first year and 10% ongoing.
Hybrid is about 75% upfront and 20% ongoing.
Level is about 30% every year.

Want to know why banks and insurance companies want to keep all this hush hush?

Want to know what this is worth when an adviser sells their practice? About 3 / 4 times the ongoing commission. As a comparison an accountancy practice will sell for 1/1.5 times the ongoing fees.

So you can imagine why a bank wants to sell to the customer directly as it’s worth a heck of a lot of money to them.

You can see why advisers are dead set against moving to a fee for service (like an accountant) instead of getting paid via a commission.

The products themselves are actually pretty good and claims will always headline those that aren’t paid out as opposed to those they do but these practices in the background cost the consumer a bucketload.


Liberals also removed a clause that Labor wanted to introduce before being voted out that advisers ‘must’ work in the clients best interest.

So moving your super from A to B to lose you money would be illegal unless the client wanted the change for a specific reason.

Doing so now is okay provided the adviser can say why. Doesn’t have to be in their best interest but needs to simply be stated (a good one would be real time monitoring of money where as some super funds only allow you to see a quarterly figure). Did it make any difference to the client? Nope.

I can tell you my former boss is in trouble with the licencee because he stopped writing business with the ‘preferred platform’. When asked why he said he couldn’t justify the fees to the client thus why he uses a different platform which could compete with the cheaper industry funds. Their response; ‘we’ll have to double your fees if you keep doing this’.

Fark this makes me angry. I had to get out to save my soul.


Back in the day I worked as an agent for MLC for a few years,… and I could not come at how they did their commissions.

They pushed you to sell a particular product called “Whole of Life” the 1st years premium on which went to me basically,… then the 2nd years to be divvied between those above me in the pyramid.

Ended up chucking it in as I couldn’t put up with what I felt was clearly pure rorting.

Good and essential thing to have is Life Insurance, … it should, and I believe would basically sell itself if it wasn’t for the shithouse way they go about it.