Australian Politics, Mark II


I went to Primary School in West Brunswick and we celebrated every significant religious day/week/manth as a whole school yet never got direct religious education.

I think joining in celebrations is THE best way of breaking down any barriers to inclusion.


My exact thoughts of the past 30 years.

Educate kids as to how this stuff evolved, let them make up their own minds, and make an informed choice whether to believe the Earth is just 6000 years old etc.


Daniel Andrews came to a lunch at our ALP Branch some years ago during the Brumby Government. I was only going to like him because he was a Bombers supporter, but he was very impressive and had great knowledge across his Health Portfolio. I was not sure he would make a good Leader, but he has been solid and no fuss, and very much in control.

Tim Pallas is not an easy bloke to like, but he is the best Treasurer this State has had in my memory. I do not agree with privatising anything, but raising money through leases is nearly acceptable, seeing we don’t lose the asset and the cash generated has been huge.

I was also doubtful on ■■■■ Wynne being Planning Minister, but he also has mostly nailed, and so has most other Ministers. It is a very competent team who have achieved much in the last four years. When I compare it to the previous 4 years when virtually nothing happened, the differences are stark.

Now while I am biased, I am also a harsh critic on the performance of most Government Ministers, and I don’t have much to complain about currently in Victoria. The best news for me is that the Federal Labor team with possibly one exception is the most talented group we have ever had. So as we move into 2019 anticipating that the Bomber list will march us up the Ladder, I am expecting the same from Billy Shortens team.


Who’s the one exception ?


That wouldn’t be fair. I will say that I have concerns in Labors ability to have strong employment initiatives. Their spokesperson could think outside the square a but more.


I’m no portfolio expert but let’s hope whoever they have lined up for industry is progressive enough to see where it’s all going and employment follows it.




Yes, I have heard good things about Daniel Andrews as a person and as a leader. And, with the notable exception of Jane Garrett, the Cabinet has held together well over the 4 years which suggests that Andrews et al are adept at managing the competing priorities (egos?) around the table and bringing things to a conclusion that satisfies them all. A much underestimated skill, viz Kevin Rudd, Tony Abbott or even Malcolm Turnbull.

However, as mentioned above, I haven’t warmed to Daniel Andrews personally. Instead I respect his competence and no-frills practicality. It’s just that every now and again, I yearn for a little inspiration, a touch of Keating-esque crazy-bravery…

Federally, I agree with you as well. I lack your experience and inside knowledge but at first pass the ALP has the makings of an incredibly strong front bench. Plibersek, Wong, Bowen, Albanese, Dreyfus, Chalmers all impress. Much more than their counterparts who, frankly, have failed to deliver much at all in the five years they’ve been in office. And like you, I’ve heard some rumblings about the employment portfolio. That, for a party founded to champion the rights of workers, may prove a liability In an economy that is changing rapidly.


I too think Andrews has done an excellent job. The only black mark against him is his mateyness with the UFU and Marshall, who seems to be a right bully-boy…and Marshall’s treatment of Jane Garrett, who seems a thoroughly decent person.


If you were in the MFB or a professional in the CFA, you would love a hard man like Marshall working for you. He does his job very well.

Jane Garrett is a back-stabbing ■■■■■, who spat the dummy after not getting her way. She leaks information to John Faine all the time. The only thing that keeps her in the ALP is her close friendship with John Setka.


If you were a volunteer in the CFA (ie, 97% of the CFA), you may well have a different opinion.

The fire service reforms made perfect sense at their most basic level - it’s ridiculous to have a volunteer service covering what might have been rural areas when the MFB/CFA were created but are now densely populated outer suburbs. But the amount of UFU overreach in that legislation, and Marshall’s persistent resistance to extending workplace antibullying etc rights to CFA volunteers, has left a bad taste in a lot of mouths.

I’m sure his members love him, because he’ll protect them no matter what ■■■■ gets piled on the volunteers as a result.


In the media Andrews appears wooden and a bit of a dork. But those who have met him ( not me) tell a different story. They tell me he’s very tall and tends to stoop, which belies a warm personality.
Enough of the charisma . He has ridden some difficult storms with Garrett, Nardella and co and has somehow kept a cohesive team . What’s important is that he has delivered on his promises, shown leadership on controversial social issues like euthanasia, indigenous treaties and has resisted the dog whistling on crime and dumping on the judiciary. He also has a strong structural adjustment agenda for displaced workers.


NZ passed TPP against the will of their people. Disgusting.

If ALP get up, I really hope they bin this.


With respect HM, my town relies 100% on volunteer firefighters, and in my past I was a member of my local CFA. Nothing in the fire service reforms affected CFA members, other than to improve communications and management of fire situations, no matter what the LNP tried to push.

Reality is that the professional firefighters and volunteers are two different groups. Marshall and the UFU represents the professional firefighters and many groups represented CFA members. The UFU can only battle for its own members and do a great job, and what gets piled on volunteers is not due to the UFU. Marshall does not and should not make an apology for his actions and talk to his members who fully endorse him.

Further reality is the the Victorian CFA is the best trained and equipped volunteer fire service in the world. Governments and local groups have poured money into buildings and equipment, and continue to do so. If you could just rid all the farking politics out of it, then there would be little to talk about. But that did not suit Jane Garretts leadership agenda and the program of the Lubs and Nats.


They should.

They won’t.


They’ve already said “It’s bad! But we’re voting for it anyway and pretending we’ll wind back the worst bits later




Strangely the main fly in the ointment for Bill Shorten seems to be the unlikability of Bill Shorten. I have heard him on the radio several times and he seems hard to warm to, staid and does not like going off script.

In the end given the ALP are likely to win well in the next federal election I really want to hear their policy positions on as many subjects as possible. I really dont like the idea of a party coming to government because the other major party fell over. Good competition for elections mean that policies get exposed and debated. Gaining government by default makes for bad government and the current Liberal party are a picture perfect example of this.


Most Politicians have madia training which makes them cautious, somewhat staid and predictable. If you meet Bill in a social situation or amongst friends, he is an easy going very likable bloke, same for Daniel Andrews. Kevin Rudd was always a ■■■■■■ in my view.


I’m happy to have a boring political nerd as prime minister, as long as they he/she is competent at the job. I’d rather boring than a Trump-wannabe or a pretender like Rudd or Scummo.

Elections should be based entirely on policy and ability to effectively govern. The only time I care about a politician’s personality is when we are establishing relations and deals with other countries or when the government is being adversely affected by bad personalities.