Friday, May 24, 2019

Bettina Arndt on the recent election

Bettina is a one-person campaign against feminist lies

Some people reading this will be unhappy after the recent election result, but I feel Australian men have dodged a bullet in avoiding a Shorten government.

Many of Labor’s policies on gender issues were extremely alarming, starting with Shorten’s promise last year of “no more budgets for blokes.” There were so many issues where Labor was promoting further discrimination in favour of women. I was amused by Labor’s recent promise to introduce gender neutral resumes on job applications in the public service. Obviously, their policy advisers didn’t know the public service had already conducted research on gender neutral resumes. They assumed this would help women but, in fact, it was men who were advantaged by this move - proving there’s now systematic prejudice favouring women. So, the public service dropped the idea and was pretty funny to see it re-surface during this election.

Most frightening for me was Tanya Plibersek’s promise to remove funding from universities that failed to do more about the rape crisis, which meant bullying them into adjudicating rape cases on campus.

Of course, it's true that the Coalition has also been very keen to kowtow to the feminists. I was disappointed last year when government ministers reached out to me seeking information about male victims of domestic violence but then caved into pressure from the domestic violence industry and awarded huge amounts of more funding only to female victims.

Perhaps the solid support the Coalition received from ‘quiet Australians’ will encourage the government towards more even-handed policies rather than pandering to the small, noisy feminist lobby. I was encouraged to see ScoMo on International Women's Day saying that: "We want to see women rise. But we don't want to see women rise only on the basis of others doing worse." Maybe one day he will dare to name men as the group increasingly worse off.


Leftist Queensland Premier backflips on Adani coal mine - after Labor's obstruction of the mine cost them the Federal election

The Queensland Labor Premier has demanded action over the Adani coalmine after Labor's federal election defeat.

Annastacia Palaszczuk criticised her own government's delays in approving Australia's biggest mine.

She said federal Labor's loss of core support in the Sunshine State has given her a 'wake-up call.'

Traditional Labor voters deserted their party at the ballot box after Bill Shorten vowed to change the nation and take 'real action' on climate change.

Before the federal election, Ms Palaszczuk promised there would be no political interference in the decision to approve the Adani mine.

But on Wednesday she stood before cameras in a hard hat in Mackay and demanded a meeting between Adani and her own government ministers.

'The community is fed up with the processes, I know I'm fed up with the processes, I know my local members are fed up with the processes,' Ms Palaszczuk said.

'We need some certainty, and we need some timeframes. Enough is enough… the federal election was definitely a wake-up call to everyone.'

Ms Palaszczuk said she understood there was frustration in the community about the lack of a decision on the mine. 'I think everyone's had a gutful of this, frankly,' she said.

The Adani coalmine will provide 1,500 jobs in regional Queensland but building work is on hold pending approval from the regulator, Queensland's Environment Department.  

A Queensland government representative will meet with Adani on Thursday to thrash out a timeline for the Carmichael mine approval process in an attempt to resolve delays that caused a voter backlash.

Ms Palaszczuk intervened to order her state co-ordinator-general to meet with Adani and the independent regulator to fix a timeline and deadline for a decision by Friday. 

Two outstanding environmental management plans, involving the site's Black-Throated Finch habitat and complex groundwater sources, have contributed to delays.

Adani Australia chief executive Lucas Dow said if approvals were not complete within two weeks then the meeting would prove to be just another government 'delaying tactic'.

CFMEU National President Tony Maher welcomed a clear timeline for the project which he said had significant community support on the grounds it would create local jobs.

He said he wanted Adani to confirm how many permanent full-time jobs the mine would generate.

Mackay Conservation Group coordinator Peter McCallum said Queensland's water and wildlife are not put at risk by the project.


New ALP leader is no Bob Hawke, despite the pretence

Anthony Albanese’s promise to end class-war politics if he becomes Labor leader lacks any shred of credibility.  Albanese has always embraced the politics of envy and class-war rhetoric — these are the watchwords of Labor’s hard left faction which he leads.

The notion that Albanese would lead Labor to the centre ground of politics with a cooperative relationship with business is hard to fathom. It is just not who he is.

Just ask the inner-city hard left faction party members he represents who proudly wear their “I Fight Tories” T-shirts. This is Albanese’s personal motto. It has been embraced by the hard left faction.

“Tory” is a class-loaded term to describe the British Conservative Party that has no relevance when describing the Liberal or National parties. This is class warfare reduced to T-shirt slogans.

Labor has to be about more than just fighting their opponents. The party has to actually believe in things. At the election, Labor suffered huge swings against it in seats where there are large cohorts of blue-collar voters and aspirational middle-class voters. These are Labor’s forgotten people and Labor must work out how to get them back.

It is not surprising that Albanese has reached for Bob Hawke’s mantle. He says he wants to lead the party in the Hawke tradition with pro-growth policies based on consensus between business and unions while bringing the country together. Well, who doesn’t?

The problem is that at Labor Party conferences through the 1980s and ‘90s, Albanese and his left faction opposed many of the Hawke government’s economic reforms. As Young Labor president, Albanese often criticised Hawke and Paul Keating. When Labor went into opposition in 1996, many in the hard left faction called for their legacy to be junked.

It is no wonder that Hawke and Keating — and also Gough Whitlam — voted for Bill Shorten rather than Albanese to lead Labor in 2013. Albanese is just not in their mould.

Albanese says he is running for the Labor leadership without doing any factional deals or owing any favours to anyone. Perhaps.

Albanese’s supporters say his great strength is his authenticity. Well, he just lost it by pretending to be something that he never has been: an acolyte of Hawke and Keating.


How the Left gave a leg-up to its ideological adversary

The Left's vociferous attacks on Morrison backfired.  What the Left thought was condemnation sounded rather good to a lot of people -- weak on climate change, for instance

Addressing elated Liberal supporters on ­Saturday night, the Prime Minister said with a wink: “I have always believed in miracles.” But miracles took Scott Morrison only so far. Political enemies helped lift his government to victory; the rest is the Prime Minister’s success.

By God, it was an unequal political playing field. The groups from the Left-Green-Labor side of politics lined up against the Morrison government — Labor, a cashed-up GetUp, law-breaking union leaders, Sally McManus’s change-the-rules campaign, the sons of the rich, from disgruntled Alex Turnbull to deluded Simon Holmes a Court, and many at the ABC, Nine and its former Fairfax newspapers — take a bow. You helped Morrison win.

Political opponents came after his faith, and he won anyway. A Guardian Australia journalist warned us to “watch abortion rights in Australia go the way of the US” — that nutty hysteria will be a fillip to the Morrison government. Keep it coming.

His spectacular re-election, against the odds, polls and predictions, has sobering political lessons. First, let’s dispose of the ABC’s election night fable. Barrie Cassidy, Andrew Probyn and Laura Tingle lined up to announce that an opposition cannot win government in Australia with a “transformative agenda”. Cry me a river. It’s not the existence of policy that destroyed Labor; it lost because it sidled up to voters with tone-deaf policies.

Bill Shorten’s class war did not work in working-class electorates he needed. The fundamental realignment of modern politics, with conservatives better understanding the working class, confirms what John Howard knew: Australians are aspirational and eager to rise from the lower strata of society. Dismissing the rich is dismissing the ambitions of the poor.

Chris Bowen, take another bow. Vote for someone else, the opposition Treasury spokesman said to hardworking Australians who have saved to be self-sufficient in retirement, not a weight on the public purse. It was his version of that career-clipping Hillary Clinton moment when she told deplorables to rack off. They did.

Older Australians abandoned Labor from Braddon and Bass to Lindsay. But it was not only the grey vote that spurned Labor. Those ­saving for their own old age were sent a message that they would be punished if they got too comfortable.

Shorten and Bowen’s Robin Hood economics of redistribution failed because millions of Australians aspire to succeed. Even those stuck on welfare understand that mocking the rich as “the top end of town” is stupid economics — their taxes sustain the social welfare state.

Shorten could not see that whipping up class war is un-Australian. It was political suicide to hark back to 1972, not 1983. Perhaps the death last week of reforming leader Bob Hawke reminded voters that Whitlam-channelling Shorten was not in that league.

Learning nothing from Saturday night, Labor’s Andrew Leigh said: “We hoped it’d be 1972 but it turned out to be 1969.” Will the Labor Party, under a new leader from its Left faction, say Anthony Albanese or Tanya Plibersek, return with more dodgy Whitlam economics next time? Good luck with that.

We were told, over and again, this was a climate change election. So it was. And those elites who can afford sky-high energy prices, blackouts and Teslas lost. Morrison was mocked for bringing a lump of coal into parliament but Saturday was a firm nod to his instincts. That black rock symbolises jobs, lower energy bills for the poorest Australians, flourishing trade and cheap, reliable energy to domestic businesses, big and small.

The story of the night happened in a seat the Liberals did not win. Labor’s Joel Fitzgibbon suffered a swing of more than 14 per cent in Hunter in regional NSW — a bombshell symbol that a religious fervour about climate change, 50 per cent renewable energy targets and Labor’s loathing of coal is political poison far away from swanky, big-city suburbs.

How good is Queensland? Morrison said it on Saturday night: a lesson to remember, as the sunshine state delivered a swing of more than 4 per cent to the Coalition. Election night was not meant to end with a swing to Peter Dutton in Dickson.

Take a bow, too, Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk. Her shenanigans over the Adani coalmine drew a thin black line between a government that cares about people’s jobs and one that doesn’t.

On that score, GetUp deserves extra credit for Morrison’s win. Those rowdy left-wing activists won one battle, turfing out Tony Abbott, but lost the war with climate change zealotry. And by removing Abbott, GetUp gave Abbott a warrior’s mantle.

“I’d rather be a loser than a quitter,” he said, delivering a classy, dignified speech that told Liberals to look forward. It was the telling contrast to Malcolm Turnbull’s resignation speech last year, full of excuses, anger and self-delusion.

Another blessing from election night: Turnbull’s sulky narrative that Australia would punish the Liberals at the federal election for the “madness” of removing him has been resolutely refuted, an amusing footnote in Liberal history.

On that note, Turnbull helped make Morrison a winner. His ­removal made way for a leader who voters understood and who understood voters.

Morrison described the win as a victory for “those Australians who have worked hard every day; they have their dreams, they have their aspirations — to get a job, to get an apprenticeship, to start a business, to meet someone amazing. To start a family, to buy a home, to provide the best you can for your kids. To save for your retirement and to ­ensure that when you’re in your retirement that you can enjoy it because you’ve worked hard for it.”

Morrison rises to the ranks of Liberal hero because he understands these quiet Australians better than his opponents.


Political, media class out of step with voters

The election result proves, yet again, that mainstream voters are smarter than the political pundits. The green Left drift of the political/media class continues to pull them away from the concerns and wisdom of voters.

Think of how many “experts” have told you since the change of leadership last year and right up until election day itself that we would see an inevitable switch to Labor, a win so emphatic that many commentators said it would be a “landslide.” Even the day before the election they were framing the death of Bob Hawke as an omen for the coronation of Bill Shorten — it was warped.

Think of the media games played to support Labor. Channel 10, the ABC and other green Left media companies pushed the so-called “Watergate” scandal yet failed to interrogate Bill Shorten’s uncosted climate and energy policies. Think of the Canberra press gallery looking at polls showing a very tight election and extrapolating some sort of uniform national swing that was going to take out Coalition seats in Queensland and New South Wales. This was wishful thinking.

Those of us who always argued the Coalition was a chance to win did so for two reasons: first, the polls always showed a tight contest when allowances were made for variations across the nation, such as the impact of Adani in Queensland, and the ever-present “shy Tory” factor; and second, we had faith in the intelligence of mainstream voters who were not going to meekly accept an insultingly simplistic and implausible policy agenda from Labor.

Labor proposed a vast plan of increased taxation at a time of economic peril and dressed it up in old-fashioned class warfare rhetoric — underestimating the public. And while the ABC and most press gallery journalists might have been gormless enough to argue that uncosted climate policies were worth a punt (complete with absurd suggestions that emissions reductions in Australia would improve the climate while global emissions continue to rise) voters were smarter than that.

It is extraordinary that political pundits, year after year, call serious national debates like a horse-race where public polls are the steeds. As I have written previously, if political assessments were as simple as looking at two-party preferred polling and calling a winner, then we hardly need experts to provide analysis.

That is why the press gallery were wrong about Tony Abbott’s chances when he assumed the Liberal leadership, wrong about Kevin Rudd’s tenure, wrong about Julia Gillard’s prospects, wrong about what would happen to the government under Malcolm Turnbull and then wrong about what would happen when he was overthrown. Do you spot a pattern? They always underestimate conservatives and get overly excited about the liberal Left.

Too many in the media have lost touch with the people they serve; and we don’t even need to ask which cohort makes the wiser assessments. When you look at how conservative voters are demonised on social media, mocked by the public broadcasters and marginalised in political debate, is it any wonder that opinion polls consistently underestimate support for right-of-centre parties?

People tend not to disclose their right-of-centre voting intentions at barbecues and footy matches because they know it can invite the stamp of the devil on their forehead. And it has long been clear this “Tory shyness” extends to responses to opinion pollsters — on Friday night on Sky News, as news came through of a slight drift in Newspoll, I suggested this factor provided palpable hope for the Coalition.

While the green Left whip themselves into a lather of self-confidence and hubris based on mutual reassurance in their Canberra and media bubbles, mainstream voters quietly consider the issues. If you only watched the ABC and read Nine Media newspapers, you could not have the information required to make an informed decision, let alone be exposed to realistic analysis. If you relied on Twitter, you would be expecting Richard Di Natale to form government.

At a Wentworth polling booth on election day I heard a Kerryn Phelps volunteer spruiking a message that echoed Labor’s climate spiel; “Vote Kerryn Phelps and save the planet.” Clearly some people will go for this sort of mindless sloganeering, especially when so many commentators fail to expose its inanity. But, crucially, while it might go unquestioned by much of the media, a majority of the voting public are never going to be quite that stupid.


 Posted by John J. Ray (M.A.; Ph.D.).    For a daily critique of Leftist activities,  see DISSECTING LEFTISM.  To keep up with attacks on free speech see Tongue Tied. Also, don't forget your daily roundup  of pro-environment but anti-Greenie  news and commentary at GREENIE WATCH .  Email me  here

1 comment:

Paul said...

Palaczuk and Adani seems a tortuous relationship. She was for it, then she wasn't for the duration of the campaign, until she was for it again. I didn't think she was all that bad (as women in politics go) but no, she's Kirner level incompetent.