Queensland Labor Silent On Government Funding

With the ever increasing lists of projects being cancelled by the current LNP Government, any reasonable person would have thought that the Opposition would be scrutinising everything that tax payers money is spent on.

Except this hasn’t been the case.

As mentioned in the post Whats On The List Of Priorities For State Funding?, the LNP Government is committed to handing over $110 Million to “revitalise” racing in Queensland. This is despite the Queensland Premier saying that Queensland doesn’t have enough money to fund the Federally initiated NDIS, or a proposed $18 Million vet lab at James Cook University in Townsville. Even going as far as to say that unless government spending was reined in, Queensland would become the Spain of Australia.

And what has the opposition said about the proposed $25 Million Greyhound track at Cronulla Park?

Would you believe, absolutely nothing?!

Numerous attempts have been made to contact the Opposition Leader Annastacia Palaszczuk about this, with all of them going unanswered. I have even gone as far as to send a tweet to her twitter account, still with no response.

I don’t know about you, though I am starting to think that maybe all this talk about Queensland Labor getting out there and listening to people and holding the LNP Government accountable is just double speak for “We aren’t really that interested in what you have to say, we just want the media to say we are”.

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Whats On The List Of Priorities For State Funding?

Hardly a day goes by where the media and the ALP opposition aren’t making some sort of noise about the withdrawal of funding for particular projects by the current LNP government.

In recent weeks, we have seen the closure of GoPrint, Q-Fleet, SDSFanfare, the Darling Downs Correctional Centre, and Skilling Queensland, because they were running at a loss or the Queensland Government just couldn’t afford to fund them any longer and work towards reducing the current debt level.

Yet, there is one project that is going ahead despite declining interest, the LNP government is willing to hand over a minimum of $110 Million dollars, which the state cannot afford, as part of an infrastructure upgrade and in a vain attempt to revitalise this ailing industry.

That industry is Racing.

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Democracy. Is The Media Or The Miner A Greater Threat?

If you have been paying any sort of attention to the media or pub talk over the past week or so, you could easily be forgiven for think that we have a free and independent press in this country, and that a shareholder wanting to have a seat on the board is one of the greatest threats to democracy this country has ever seen.

Though is it really?

First of all, it shouldn’t be too strange to see that most of this is coming from the media itself, mimicked by boffins in government who like the things the way that they are. After all it is only the media themselves who believe that they are the Fourth Estate, boasting that the media’s function is to act as a guardian of the public interest and as a watchdog on the activities of government.

Putting aside any personal opinion that you may have of Gina Rinehart and her desire to get a seat or seats on the Fairfax board, lets look at this objectively and from another angle.

With the exception of the taxpayer funded ABC and SBS, and privately owned 9 Network, the other media outlets in this country are publicly listed companies. 11 out of 12 of Australia’s capital city daily newspapers are owned by either News Limited or Fairfax.

Why should we treated these media companies any differently than those other companies that are listed on the Australian Stock Exchange?

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The Big Announcement

By now most of the readers of this blog would be aware that in 2013 I will be throwing my hat in the the ring of election madness as a candidate for a Senate seat in Queensland.

Why after all these years of having a go at they way politicians govern, would I possibly want to become one of them?

The answer is simple really, though a little bit corny too. I am doing this for the people of Queensland, and Australia in general. We have all been mislead and hoodwinked by the current crop of politicians for far too long, and a complicit media further perpetuates the deception. So much for their position as the Fourth Estate.

I can no longer sit idly by commenting on things after have happened or raising awareness before they do. So now I am asking the people of Queensland to vote me into a Senate seat, and into a position to stop the continual deception from happening.

When we learn about politics and voting, at first we are taught to be cautious and be wary of what they say. Then as time goes by we start voting for the politicians based on the party they represent, not what they can do for the electorate. The level of caution that we first displayed, should be repeated every time that we put pencil to paper and vote for someone.

The political party game that is being played has let us all down at both the State and Commonwealth level, and has let us down in a big way.

We have seen a Carbon Tax/Emission Trading Scheme become law because the leader of the Federal Australian Labor Party made a deal with The Australian Greens to form a minority government. This is despite her promise to the Australian people that there would be no ETS in a government that she leads, and the fact that a majority of Australian’s actually voted against the ALP.
In Queensland we have seen the virtual annihilation of the ALP at the last State election, due in no part to the perceived arrogance and mistrust in the party’s former leader.
In NSW, legislation has been passed to allow shooting in National Parks after the government did a deal with the two members from The Shooter’s Party, to allow their privatisation bill to pass.

So why should Queenslanders vote for me?

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Is It The System That Is Broken Or Only Those Within It?

With polling booths now closed on another Queensland election weekend, this time the vote was for the Local Government representative, though the lucky people of South Brisbane did have the privilege of queuing up twice, as they had to vote in the by-election caused by the resignation of former Labor leader Anna Bligh.

This campaign, whilst not as exciting as that of the recent Qld State election, did result in some interesting campaigning by the ALP’s hopeful, Ray Smith.

Hardly an interview went by in the lead up to the election, where Ray Smith wasn’t begging and pleading with voters to judge him on the policies that him and his team have, rather than the toxic ALP brand.

The result was pretty much forgone conclusion with current Lord Mayor, Graham Quirk retaining the position, and the ALP only able to hold on to a handful of wards. Even the hallowed Beattie name wasn’t enough, with former Premier Peter Beattie’s wife Heather missing out on her shot at the Brisbane Central ward.

With the dust settling from this election, attention will now turn to the federal sphere and it’s election, which is due sometime in 2013.

Unless the ALP change what they are doing, and there is a major outpouring of sympathy from the voters, the Queensland result is expected to be replicated federally next year.  With some saying that former PM Kevin Rudd may be the only one to able to hold on to their seat in Queensland.

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Is A Political Party It’s Leader Or The People Within It

Last week saw the resignation from Australian politics by the Australian Greens leader, Bob Brown.

Since the announcement, there has been all sort of speculation as to the future of the party without him at the helm.

Whilst the reasons behind his departure have been wide and varied, ranging from saying that it was due to his age, and that he has probably had enough of it all. Though to saying that he is getting out now before the next election and the voter backlash begins as a result of the carbon tax having a far greater increase on the cost of living than originally promised.

Regardless of his reasons, and what actually does happen to the party at the next election, the speculation alone should be enough to send a clear message to voters that it is time to move away from the archaic practice of voting for political parties.

As we have seen with the Queensland State election result, and the paltry number of members elected due to a protest vote away from the ALP. Prior to the election, former Premier, Anna Bligh, promised that she would stay in politics and lead the ALP, even if it was from the opposition. Yet, she went ahead and resigned even before the counting had finished in her seat, causing a by-election to be held.

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Lessons To Learn From The Queensland Election

With the dust slowly settling on the 2012 Queensland election, all the media commentators and so called political experts have got their voroscopes out looking at the ALP’s campaign and adding their $0.10 worth of opinion as to what happened at this election.
They are all singing the same tune saying that Labor lost for this reason and/or that reason, and saying that Federal Labor needs to pay attention unless they want to see the same thing happen to them at the next election.
Queensland also has local government elections coming up, and a similar result is predicted to happen there with similar lessons to be learnt too.

These are the lessons that Queensland and Australian politics need to be aware of before the next election, and to reduce the level of political apathy in this country that Bob Hawke pointed out earlier this year;

  • There was a noticeable lack of independent candidates standing. This either means that any potential candidates don’t really think they can make a difference and aren’t going to stand, or they are scared off by the dirt digging that the media will do.
  • The media has to stop going into a feeding frenzy over the mud slinging that goes on.
  • Politicians and potential politicians alike have to stop playing the individual and start focusing on what matters to the electorate, and that is policies.
  • The voting public has to get away from the indoctrinated two party preferred voting structure, and start voting for candidates who will serve their electorate, not a political party.
  • The voting public in general, and their children need to be taught about our political system and how it works rather than making their mind up based on a popularity contest.

Regardless of what others may say, our political system is not broken. Granted it is in such a bad state of disrepair that it does give this impression, but I believe that it can be fixed and returned to what was originally intended at Federation.

The time to raise this awareness is now and whilst The System is still repairable, as it won’t stay that way for ever. I am guessing that it may last two terms, maybe three at the most before the apathy and misinformation becomes accepted as the norm. This give us a little under 10 years to repair the political system for our future generations.