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Aussies and NZers: Four seasons in one protest


karaddin
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1 hour ago, Skyrazer said:

If we saw the seats that the Libs lost shifting to more right-wing candidates like UAP/PHON, then I can understand the logic in shifting right. But we saw the opposite occur.

This. For the most part those hypothetical seats fall into the following categories 

  1. Are already coalition seats
  2. Too multicultural for the hard right to win over, given how racist it is, and entirely unclear that there's actually any appetite for hardcore social conservatism even without the racism*
  3. Don't exist

*I know some people looked at the result of the postal survey in Western Sydney and think that meant there were votes to be gained on an anti-LGBTQ platform but Brook maintains (and I agree) that its a complete misreading of those results. That wasn't a vote in a regular election, they were being asked about their feelings on that one specific issue in complete isolation from any other policies and were the target of a massive bigotry campaign that was not being countered by the 'Yes' vote. The 'Yes' campaign used its resources strategically and decided that those areas were not the best use of them, and put minimal effort into swaying them. It doesn't mean they are particularly passionate on that issue, they were specifically being asked and targeted. It definitely doesn't mean they vote on that issue and at no point have we seen a significant number of them that have.

What we did see is a country that despite the best efforts of our media to hype up a transphobic scare campaign like has been much more successful in the US and the UK, most people saw straight through it and think bullying kids is shit. Maybe a solid 3 years of media coverage will change that, but for now that aspect of the culture war hasn't found purchase in the Australian people.

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As I said before, if this makeup of parliament works out decently and the public generally warm up to it which leads to similar results next election, leading to a solidifying of ALP + healthy number of independents, the LNP may find themselves in an existential crisis. The hard-right/culture-war/divisive style of politics works better in a 2-party system where it can paint an us-vs-them picture and use it to its advantage. Seeing that we are shifting away from a 2-party dominated landscape to something more mixed akin to what you see in EU nations for instance, the republican style of politicking becomes more muted and something the LNP can no longer rely on (which they have been to an extent).

I know when Rudd won in '07, people were pronouncing the end of the LNP for atleast a decade or whatever so I do have my doubts. But the scene has changed alot since then and now that the electorate has caught on that you can viably vote in an independent if one of the majors piss you off, it's a whole different ball game compared to elections before.

Hopefully the ALP can just keep a steady course and not blow itself up which it has a bit of a tendency to do.

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I wouldn't get too excited about the Libs appearing to have no pathway back into power. A lot of the swing to Labour will be people who will vote Lib again as soon as Labour is not serving their interests, or doing what they think a reasonable govt should do. You'd think that in 2020 when our Labour govt got an outright majority in the popular vote, giving them >50% of seats in parliament for the first time since MMP was introduced the Labour party would be a shoo in to be the biggest party in the 2023 election, but that is far from certain, and in recent polls the right has a larger vote share than the left.

Oppositions don't have to perform, they just have to hit govts where there are perceived (or real) weaknesses, and give the appearance of knowing what they are talking about. Most of the time govts lose election rather than oppositions win them. A popular govt doesn't get voted out even if the opposition is popular, because people are happy to stick with what they have. It's unpopular govts that lose, and it's not hard for a govt to lose popularity. If Labour doesn't deliver on the things teal voters care about, they'll turn back to blue, because they are not of the ideology to go full green.

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Trust me, I'm not getting my hopes up too much. I'm fully aware how short people's memories can be and how unpredictable politics can be.

I'm not expecting the ALP to set the world on fire but to keep a healthy equilibrium with Greens/Teals which will be enough to isolate the LNP if they continue to veer right and the ALP are playing it pretty safe for the time being. I'm well aware that if the ALP start stumbling or even if the LNP get their shit together, anything can happen.

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5 hours ago, Skyrazer said:

I just don't see how that's a realistic strategy to get the Libs back into govt.

I don't think getting back into government is the top priority right after an election loss, at least from a practical point of view. The dust needs to settle and the caucus needs to get used to working out the practicalities now that the composition and leadership has changed - and that will be without many moderates in the room.

Long-term, there are a few areas (e.g. taxation reform, business-friendly policies) where the Liberals can differentiate themselves from Labor. Labor will save them the trouble of a federal ICAC and green targets etc but they shouldn't attempt any rollbacks. Rollback campaigns are doomed to fail (e.g. Labor's rollback of the GST).

 

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I really, really would not write any obituaries for the Libs. Australia has shown itself time and time again to have a conservative bent. You can look at anything from the Tampa affair, through the Riots, Stop the Boats, the gay marriage plebiscite and forgiving the Coalition virtually overnight for the leadership squabbles that haunted the ALP for a decade.  

The Liberals will be back - whether under Dutton or another leader. They will win back those Perth suburban seats. They will spend big in the suburbs of Sydney. They will fight on the beaches and on the landing grounds; in the fields and streets. This is just the end of a cycle. 

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59 minutes ago, Paxter said:

I really, really would not write any obituaries for the Libs.

Yes. There is a tendency to write off the losing side in any election, which is understandable, but the Liberals/Coalition and Labor have dominated politics for the last 50-odd years. While this was a solid win for Labor (and the Liberals did lose 20-odd seats), it was not by any stretch of the imagination an electoral wipeout of the Liberal party. These things come and go in cycles.

For the Liberals it will be a question of whether Labor is in power for the next 3 years or whether it's in power for the next 10. With Dutton at the helm, I'm not sure they'll be able to win back power straight away, but another leading candidate with broader appeal hasn't really emerged and may take some time. I view him more as a placeholder than anything else; he's not really going to win an election (although to be fair, Abbott did, so we can't really write him off completely either).

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46 minutes ago, Paxter said:

I really, really would not write any obituaries for the Libs. Australia has shown itself time and time again to have a conservative bent. You can look at anything from the Tampa affair, through the Riots, Stop the Boats, the gay marriage plebiscite and forgiving the Coalition virtually overnight for the leadership squabbles that haunted the ALP for a decade.  

Don't disagree here. We tend to be spooked easily over something or another and go running back to conservatism. The Libs tend to get held to a lower standard as well compared to Labor and are let off the hook more.

I don't doubt the LNP will come back eventually in one guise or another. I just believe that if they continue shifting into the conservative deep end and Labor don't implode, it may be awhile before they're viable again. I doubt they'll be getting back those teal seats any time soon and without them, it's going to be difficult.

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I never expected ScoMo to implode as much as he did - events got the better of him in the end, together with the “end of the cycle” thing.

Let’s see what lies ahead for PM Albo.

Also, can we please have a female PM again so we can end all these “o” ending nicknames?

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It's worse here when there is a female PM, because everyone starts calling her aunty. For people who don't like our PM it's aunty Cindy in some sort of attempt to diminish her status. For other's is Aunty Jacinda as a term of endearment. For Helen Clarke it was aunty Helen, possibly initially started somewhat maliciously because she never had children of her own. I hope our next female PM isn't lumbered with that title. 

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Just to be clear I don't think the Libs are absolutely done, I just think the culture wars angle that they tried with Deves this election did not yet find purchase in Aus and they'd be foolish to throw away the inner city seats that used to be their blue ribbon seats. 

I think anyone hoping for an "unelectable" right wing asshole needs to learn their lessons from Trump and remember what 3 years of wall to wall media propaganda can do. Dutton is fucking terrifying and I've been saying that for over 5 years, I would never hope for him as leader assuming he'll feel to grasp power.

What I do think is that if the Liberals do the wrong things over the next 3 years there's a chance the teal movement could start to solidify into a new centre right party, but that requires the existing right wing fucking up further.

2 hours ago, Paxter said:

I never expected ScoMo to implode as much as he did - events got the better of him in the end, together with the “end of the cycle” thing.

Yeah, it was obvious he was a lazy and resentful asshole as early as the fires/Hawaii trip and I knew his job performance was questionable from the Tourism Australia days but I still didn't expect this. At no point did he ever play the valiant leader, whether it was the pandemic or all the flooding this year, and as soon as it became clear his colleagues were going to blame him he crumbled under the pressure.

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9 hours ago, karaddin said:

Just to be clear I don't think the Libs are absolutely done, I just think the culture wars angle that they tried with Deves this election did not yet find purchase in Aus and they'd be foolish to throw away the inner city seats that used to be their blue ribbon seats. 

The inner city seats are an interesting one. While it's true that historically they've gone to the Liberals, there are a few inner city seats that have a more Labor / Greens bent, especially if they're full of younger demographics, socially conscious voters and (for wont of a better term) the "progressive elite". For that reason I think inner city can always be a bit of a toss-up. The Greens always perform much better in those types of seats than anywhere else.

I think the real blue ribbon seats for the Liberals are wealthy suburbia - the types of well-off nuclear families that are likely to have more conservative values than inner-city wealth (which is more likely to be affluent young couples or retirees). My electorate of Bradfield (in Sydney's North Shore) has been continuously held by the Liberals since its creation in 1949, and even in the recent election Paul Fletcher held onto it comfortably, with more than twice the primary vote of the second-ranked candidate (an Independent). The Liberal party will be in real trouble if they lose seats like Bradfield.

The question is that there aren't too many of those seats around, so they need to find appeal somewhere else. One constituency which fits their (at least in theory) avowed strengths of traditional family values and small business are meritocratic immigrants, which would expand the map for them in some places, but it's hard to see the predominantly white-oriented Liberals doing that well.

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Interesting potential developments here in the supermarket wars. In the past, potential new players in the supermarket game were up against stupid loyalty to the established supermarket companies, so a few have tried and failed. But with a bit of a perfect storm where our commerce watchdog has found the current duopoly to be not providing a competitive enough sector, which made public sentiment sour on the current companies a bit, and then with the inflation hitting more of the public are keen to see any measures that will keep grocery bills from spiralling out of control. This suddenly makes NZ (or rather Auckland and maybe one or two other cities) a more attractive proposition for other players.

One problem, of course, is that while other players may come into the market, they are not going to come in right now when people are feeling the inflation squeeze, and by the time they do set up shop the inflation squeeze will likely be over. Hopefully though the loss of public good will in the current players will last longer than the inflation spike and new players in the game will find they will be viable long term.

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  • 2 weeks later...

I guess nothing interesting is happening in Aus right now.

First meeting between Ardern and Albo. Glad to see our PM bring up the 501 deportee issue. Not surprised that Albo gave a completely non-committal commitment to look into it, while at the same time re-committing the govt to the broad strokes of the 501 policy.

But we're good friends committed to an even closer relationship, so that's nice.

Edited by The Anti-Targ
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  • 3 weeks later...

Yes, not too much happening in Australia apart from the usual - some cricket (it is weird and maybe a bit gratuitous to be playing n Sri Lanka given the circumstances over there), some inflation, more RBA rate-raising talk, and the first few weeks of an Albo government that seem to have gone reasonably smoothly.

The NSW government on the other hand can't boast such a thing. Today will be the most disrupted day in a long while, with a teachers strike and a train strike at the same time. While I don't know much about public transport workers, teachers have really done it tough, and deserve a decent pay rise. The starting pay for a teacher is quite good, but it tops out very early at around 100K in the public sector for a classroom teacher unless you go into management or school administration, which is not what a lot of teachers started out their careers for. 

And to all the people who might say that teachers get lots of holidays and have cushy work hours, I have two responses... (1) Let's see those people cope in the classroom thinking it's just those work hours...it would be the equivalent of preparing hours and hours of work presentations every single day without fail, except you're presenting not to your adult colleagues but to a skeptical audience of teenage hecklers that need to be entertained (or controlled), and (2) if the work conditions and pay of teachers is so great, why are there massive shortages with no one wanting to become a teacher or career change into it?

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NZ govt officially calls the Proud Boys and The Base terrorist organisations

https://www.rnz.co.nz/news/political/470065/new-zealand-designates-american-proud-boys-and-the-base-terrorist-organisations

Quote

Set down in the government's official journal of record - the gazette - last Monday, 20 June, it was published publicly a week later but with no wider dissemination.

The move - authorised by Police Commissioner Andrew Coster and signed off by Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern - makes anyone with property or financial dealings related to The Base and the Proud Boys liable for prosecution and up to seven years imprisonment under the Terrorism Suppression Act.

Dunno if we have terrorist cells here, but I would not be at all surprised if we do.

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