The dominant media narrative has been that the voters continue to desert the main parties, especially the LNP, in droves, mainly to One Nation. Reality is a bit more complex, and recent polls have thrown up other interesting results, like 64% of people overall, and 56% of LNP voters, support a royal commission into banking.
Let’s look at Newspoll first, where Labor has opened up a yawning two-party preferred gap of 55-45, up from 54-46:
Continue reading Poll stuff: the redhead on the surge
Michelle Grattan makes the case that the WA preference deal, (putting One Nation ahead of the Nationals in the upper house regional seats in return for One Nation preferencing against Labor in the lower house, which they probably would have done any way), has ‘normalised’ Pauline Hanson in the Liberal firmament.
The question now is whether One Nation has matured, whether the Liberal Party has moved towards them politically, and whether ON is actually working in the interests of the battlers Pauline Hanson claims to represent.
Continue reading Pauline Hanson now normalised in the Liberal firmament
I can’t make up my mind whether Malcolm Turnbull’s brains have fried, or whether he is just plain evil. I think of Godwin Grech, and think the former. My wife is convinced it’s the latter, and she’s usually right about people.
Anyway politics reached a new level of absurdity last week, as Scott Morrison brought a lump of coal into the parliament, which ended up between a crazed Barnaby Joyce’s legs, while in Question Time Turnbull’s answer to every question about the omnibus bill to change social security entitlements (and save a heap of cash) was to rant about Bill Shorten, blackouts and dreaded renewable energy in South Australia.
All the while, fossil fuel generators are gaming the system, to extract more from electricity consumers, while the market regulator ends up splitting the profits.
Two politicians from South Australia, Premier Jay Weatherill and Energy Minister Tom Koutsantonis, are very angry, and they’ve had enough. Continue reading Politicians lie, while corporates game the electricity system
1. Royal commission into child sexual abuse
I haven’t been able to bring myself to post anything on the Royal commission into child sexual abuse so far. The sheer horror if it has been too much for words.
Now we have some numbers in relation to the Catholic Church. Continue reading Saturday salon 11/2
According to Newspoll if an election were held on 6 February this year, Labor would have 85 seats, the LNP 60 and there would be five others:
As Michelle Grattan said, the seventh loss in a row, and the worst since Turnbull became PM. Something happened last September, and it’s been looking uglier for Turnbull ever since. Continue reading Poll stuff: politics as usual resumes in 2017
Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull addressing the National Press Club last week, described energy as a “defining debate of this parliament”.
His speech set out Turnbull’s vision for Australia’s energy future – covering renewable energy, “clean” coal, gas, power prices and electricity security. He talked up coal, saying Australia as a big exporter needs to show we are using state-of-the-art clean coal-fired technology.
The Climate Council ran a Fact Check and found clean coal is NOT A THING.
Large-scale wind and solar plants are already cheaper than new “more efficient” coal plants, and waaaay cheaper than coal plants with CCS.
You might expect that from the Climate Council, but Ben Potter in the Australian Financial Review reports that just about everyone is saying the same thing. Continue reading Electricity prices: Turnbull’s central
policy scare campaign
On a superficial level I agree with President Trump that it was a “dumb deal” for the US to accept asylum seekers warehoused by Australia in Nauru and Manus Island. We should have brought them to Australia long ago.
What is scary is how Trump and his administration handled the whole thing. Via Bloomberg, this is the scene in his office:
Continue reading Dumb deal
1. The rich have become gods
According to the latest Oxfam report, the top 1% now own more than the rest of us. In fact, just 62 people own as much wealth as the poorer half of the world’s population. The rich have become like gods. Marx said:
Money is the supreme good, therefore its possessor is good.
Continue reading Saturday salon 21/1
I had a look at the archive, and last January we were confronted with the question One-third of Australian pensioners live in poverty?, an overheating planet, and groups of men humiliating, sexually assaulting and robbing women around the main railway station in Cologne on New Year’s Eve.
A year later it has become clear that opportunistic, small-scale acts of terrorism are going to be with us for a very long time.
Meanwhile Britain voted to leave the EU, Americans shocked the world by electing Donald Trump, and after eight excruciating weeks of campaigning, Malcolm Turnbull fell over the line, and with a dummy spit on election night, and as one Coalition insider said, “with his authority diminished and his judgment is being questioned on multiple levels”, proceeded to try to govern with a polyglot senate. Continue reading Goodbye 2016, hello 2017
My son Mark, who has a better idea about these things than I do, thinks we’ll have Abbott back again as PM, probably about six months before the next election. That way he can blame everything that’s wrong on Malcolm and concentrate on developing some nice slogans for an election, something he’s really good at.
Turnbull has just chalked up his eighth losing Newspoll in a row. By the middle of next year that could be over 20. Around about that time, with another unconvincing budget from ScoMo and Matthias Cormann, we should be due to lose our triple-A credit rating. If Malcolm continues to displease the conservative right in his party he will be vulnerable from that time on.
Newspoll, which looked at October-December as a block, had a few interesting tales to tell. Continue reading Will Turnbull be PM this time next year?
A bit further down I’m going to look at what Tristan Edis has to say about electricity pricing, but first what the whole affair is doing to Turnbull.
Mark Di Stefano at Buzzfeed has a detailed account of Turnbull’s year in 2016: The Year That Broke Malcolm Turnbull, and the pictures follow the story. Turnbull starts out as a confident leader, full of hope and bright ideas, and ends as just another politician that people don’t like very much. And there is rising anger about him within the conservatives of his own party.
Michelle Grattan’s piece in Has Turnbull’s credibility deficit reached a point of no return? leads with an image that says it all: Continue reading Turnbull and energy policy broken
1. 39,000 lightning strikes
We had 39,000 lightning strikes in one storm the other day. Apparently more than a million in the first six days of summer if you count cloud-to-cloud strikes.
Nothing too unusual about all that if you’ve lived in these parts for a while. Continue reading Saturday salon 10/12