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Poll Bludger: double whammy for major parties in Qld

At first blush, the looming Queensland state election appears to lend itself to a straightforward diagnosis. Labor will go into the campaign encumbered by an ever-expanding list of unfulfilled commitments and policy failures, a formidable “it’s time” factor born of 20 years in government out of the past 22, the disastrous unpopularity of the government’s federal counterpart, and an LNP leader who strongly out-rates the Premier in opinion polls.

Under normal circumstances, the only point at issue would be the precise scale of the impending conservative landslide. Not for the first time though, Queensland is showing itself to be an exceptional circumstance, with the poll looming as the most complex and fascinating contest to confront the Australian election watcher since the state last confounded the nation with the Pauline Hanson earthquake of 1998.

Crikey’s seat-by-seat review of the state’s 89 electorates offers at least some sort of guide through the minefield, with the entry page laying out the seats by order of the margins recorded at Anna Bligh’s historic win in 2009 — still the only parliamentary majority ever secured by a woman leader in an Australian federal or state election, albeit that Peter Beattie would have us believe it could just as easily have been the first ever election won by a dog.

The conventional means of plotting the likely outcome of an election, as pioneered by Australia’s psephological godfather Malcolm Mackerras, is to observe the trend of the more reliable opinion pollsters and count the number of seats the insurgent party would net in the event of a uniform swing, under the more-or-less safe assumption that the inevitable variations will cancel each other out.

On this basis, Labor enters the election with a considerable advantage: it would take a uniform swing of 3.2% and an overall two-party preferred result of 52.3%-47.7% in the LNP’s favour to cost Labor seven seats and their majority, the seat of Whitsunday marking the tipping point on the pendulum. If the election of four independents in 2009 were repeated, the swing required for an LNP absolute majority would be 4.2% and the two-party preferred result 53.3%-46.7%.

However, there are several reasons to question the value of such an exercise on this occasion.

It is often noted that the campaign period seems to be unusually important in shaping the outcome of elections in Queensland, such that opinion polls a few months before the event are a more than usually unreliable guide. This seems to be due not so much to peculiarities of Queenslanders’ psychology (though no doubt there are a few of those) as to the tendency of campaigns to show up the fractious state of conservative politics in Queensland.

Whereas pre-election opinion polls give respondents a painless opportunity to vent anger over the government’s failures, elections in the decade before the LNP merger forced voters to confront the unresolved questions of Liberal-Nationals rivalry: which of the two leaders should be considered the alternative premier, and how could the respective parties’ urban and rural orientations be reconciled to voters on the other side of the divide?

Such difficulties were concealed by the Nationals’ dominance in the 1980s, but the abolition of Joh Bjelke-Petersen’s infamous system of rural vote weighting after Labor came to power in 1989, together with the population explosion in Queensland’s urban south-east, made the party’s seniority within the Coalition more and more anomalous as time went by.

When the Beattie government came to power in 1998, the conservatives thus found themselves on the horns of a dilemma: so long as the Liberals were the junior partner the Coalition stood little chance of winning the south-east Queensland seats on which modern elections have hinged, and those seats were the very ones the Liberals had to win if seniority was to be attained.

It took three devastating election defeats in a row, in 2001, 2004 and 2006, to force the two parties to look past their vested interests and cultural differences and accept the logic of a merger as their only shot at becoming competitive at state level.

So it was that the conservatives were finally able to present a united front at the 2009 election as the LNP — superficially at least, since the merger terms continued to reflect the Nationals’ greater parliamentary strength at the time it was negotiated. This meant the unmistakeably rural Lawrence Springborg was sent out to battle against a polished and highly marketable Brisbane-based opponent in Anna Bligh, a fatal weakness given the strongly presidential style of modern state election campaigns.

Even so, the merger proved its worth by bringing home a swag of seven new south-east Queensland seats, which has helped give the LNP the urban complexion it has so badly needed. However, this has not been without a cost, the submerging of the Nationals having provoked yet another rebellion against major party politics in rural and regional Queensland — this time in the shape of Katter’s Australian Party.

Even before the election, Bob Katter’s new outfit has peeled two seats off the 34 the LNP won in 2009, with the defection of Dalrymple MP Shane Knuth and Beaudesert MP Aidan McLindon. A third member, Rob Messenger in Burnett, also quit mid-term to sit as an independent.

Knuth is considered a near certainty to retain Dalrymple, and Katter’s son Robbie and former Test cricketer Carl Rackemann look strong prospects in Mount Isa and Nanango, respectively held by Labor and a retiring independent. There have also been suggestions that further LNP members might yet follow in the footsteps of Knuth or McLindon, either before or after the election, with Howard Hobbs in Warrego looking an especially likely candidate for disaffection with the Campbell Newman-led LNP.

Katter’s party presents the LNP with a further difficulty owing to the operation of optional preferential voting and the increasing tendency of voters to exercise the “just vote one” option, the rate of which among rural independent voters in 2009 was put at 54% in a ballot paper survey conducted by the Electoral Commission of Queensland.

This suggests that for every 10% the LNP loses to Katter candidates, it will suffer a penalty of at least 5% in terms of the contest against Labor — which could greatly complicate the task of winning regional marginals such as Cook (with a Labor margin of 2.2%), Barron River (2.3%), Whitsunday (3.2%), Townsville (4.0%), Cairns (4.7%), Mundingburra (6.6%), Keppel (7.6%), Mulgrave (8.1%) and Thuringowa (8.5%).

The double whammy of a big complement of independent and Katter’s Australian Party members and a tougher job of winning regional seats from Labor could thus require the LNP to look at urban seats much further up the pendulum if they are to gain a majority and govern in their own right.

Opinion polls continue to suggest that a sufficient swing is more than likely, but there remains another wild card in the deck — the appalling risk the LNP has taken in pitting its prospective leader against Kate Jones in Ashgrove, which the popular incumbent holds with a margin of 7.1%, and the possibility that the wheels might fall off yet another conservative Queensland election campaign if indications emerge that he might fall short. There will be a lot more to say about that when the campaign unfolds.

  • 1
    Suzanne Blake
    Posted Monday, 16 January 2012 at 1:25 pm | Permalink

    Queenslanders will have baseball bats out to another incompetent Labor Government and Bligh is trying to work out the least bruising date for the poll

  • 2
    Lord Barry Bonkton
    Posted Monday, 16 January 2012 at 1:47 pm | Permalink

    S.B , as a qlder , i have not seen any Baseball bats yet ? They might be saving them for when Can-Do nothing doesn’t get to win the seat ? No seat No Can do NOTHING. Your favorite debt theme should be asking Can -Do what sort of debt he has left Brisbane City Council with all those tunnels that are not being used and are going broke ??? I will be voting for the Greens as usual , but will not pass on my vote to Labor/LNP. Vote 1 Greens is the best way to go , to try and save our GBR from the Big miners and Big Gas. (Gladstone Harbour)

  • 3
    Son of foro
    Posted Monday, 16 January 2012 at 2:09 pm | Permalink

    Queenslanders use cricket bats.

  • 4
    Suzanne Blake
    Posted Monday, 16 January 2012 at 2:16 pm | Permalink

    I have seen them use golf clubs more effectively on cane toads

  • 5
    Jim McDonald
    Posted Monday, 16 January 2012 at 2:38 pm | Permalink

    William, Your comment on the Noosa electorate in the last Queensland election is wrong. You stated that Cate Molloy ran as a green candidate: she did not: she ran as an independent and The Greens candidate, Steve Haines, increased The Greens’ vote by 4.3%. After the 2010 Federal election results in Noosa booths, we expect to do as well as Greens in the best metropolitan seats in this year’s election. Jim McDonald, Greens Candidate, Noosa.

  • 6
    Hugh (Charlie) McColl
    Posted Monday, 16 January 2012 at 2:41 pm | Permalink

    Can Do is a can’t. Queenslanders use fruit bats.

  • 7
    zut alors
    Posted Monday, 16 January 2012 at 3:05 pm | Permalink

    Bligh and her government may be heavily on the nose but the best the LNP can offer is Campbell Newman, a politician fixated on unprofitable tunnels.

    Looking beyond the potential LNP leader to the talent in the current shadow cabinet, it’s clear there’s a dearth of it. They can’t even embarrass Bligh during Question Time - and, g0d knows, there’s a wealth of material on which they can rely. But the LNP haven’t any wits about them. The prospect of them running Queensland is truly alarming.

  • 8
    Posted Monday, 16 January 2012 at 3:33 pm | Permalink

    This election is clearly not a two horse race. As QLD have shown in the past they will vote for a fresh voice, or in the case of Katter, more likely to vote for someone they can trust, someone who is ‘one of them’.

    With both the ALP and Libs being a bit on the nose of late, no doubt Katter’s Party will romp home with many many seats; more than One Nation ever did.

    Malcolm Mackerras Pendulum can only really be applied to a two party system.
    We certainly do not have a 2PP election in QLD this year.

  • 9
    Posted Monday, 16 January 2012 at 4:33 pm | Permalink

    Too true, contrary to editorial claims in the “Curry a Male” - there is such a thing as a “win by default” (and this “Labor” has been woeful - forgetting it’s real roots, while looking more like wanting to “root everything”). Who “vets” interviewees for high level jobs, especially in high profile/PR “Health” - and are they actually paid to screw up like cock-work?.
    “Napoleon” and his Limited News Party forces should romp in with whatever “mandate garland” the papper, with it’s unfettered influence, wants to bestow on him and his.
    The only difference between Katter’s Really Angry Party and the other conservatives, is they’re led by a rodeo clown, more used to trying to distract the bull than toss it – wait till they smell leather .

    I’m tipping an increased “Informal” vote as more people can’t bring themselves to support either of the “major league” players - either the “(Santoro-Can-do) Dodgers”, or the “(Bill ‘n Bligh) Pirates”.

  • 10
    Posted Monday, 16 January 2012 at 4:46 pm | Permalink

    @Suzanne Blake. Baseball bats? Really. Must you steal everything from the Tea Party and other American Astroturf movements. Would it hurt your brain so much to come up with an original thought??

  • 11
    Suzanne Blake
    Posted Monday, 16 January 2012 at 4:49 pm | Permalink

    @ RomanJohn

    It may come as a surprise to your blinkered view, but we play baseball in Australia. I fact we beat the US winning team (Atlanta Braves) when they came here just before the Olympics or just after, anyway 12 years ago.

    My kids play it and have since T ball.

    So suggest you widen your horizons in 2012.

  • 12
    Posted Monday, 16 January 2012 at 5:03 pm | Permalink

    @Lisacrago in my opinion Katter isn’t one of them so much as one of those.. People who vote for him have no capacity to look beyond their backyard and simply do not have the nouse required to even develop an informed opinion. They look at his moronly head clothed as ever in a 10 gallon hat, and think “OMG if only mine was big enough to have a 10 gallon representing it”. My old dad used to say the bigger the hat the smaller the brain, but I paraphrased it to dick, since those same peopple had Toorak Tractors with no knowledge of locking the hubs before proceeding into dangerous waters.

    Katter is a politician because he was never much good at anything, but knew who to employ to make his commercial efforts viable. That gave him valuable mileage as a “business man”, without requiring much as a politician. The issue is always, if a man has to have a huge 4 wheel drive and a monstrous hat, we have to ask “what is he making up for”?

  • 13
    Posted Monday, 16 January 2012 at 6:39 pm | Permalink

    Newman is just a snout in the trough opportunsit like abbott,reading comments about an unelected leader in qld papers,show the lnp is a joke ,with candidates falling over due to drunk driving,real liberal role model,maybe he celebrated to earlier,as is the biased murdoch media.

  • 14
    Suzanne Blake
    Posted Monday, 16 January 2012 at 6:54 pm | Permalink

    @ Schnappi

    With candidates falling over due to drunk driving”

    You are lucky Schnappi. We get Labor members in NSW jailed for paedo philia, ICAC corruption findings, the famous Craig Thompson to name a few.

  • 15
    Posted Monday, 16 January 2012 at 7:20 pm | Permalink

    Sb - not only an astroturfer for mid N coast NSW, but now Qld. MM must be so ashamed.

  • 16
    Posted Monday, 16 January 2012 at 7:26 pm | Permalink

    You stated that Cate Molloy ran as a green candidate: she did not: she ran as an independent”


  • 17
    Posted Monday, 16 January 2012 at 8:00 pm | Permalink

    In case what I said is not approved,seems you and brandis judge people guilty without even being charged,understand thompson has never been charged with anything.

  • 18
    Suzanne Blake
    Posted Monday, 16 January 2012 at 8:09 pm | Permalink

    It is alleged he used Union funds inappropriately, the fraud case is being investigated.

  • 19
    Posted Monday, 16 January 2012 at 9:12 pm | Permalink

    Seems people are guilty by your previous post,based on allegations,your latest post confirms you are biased in your opinion,I could make allegations about liberals,for example there is a YouTube video where lying abbott says a carbon tax is a sensible way to go,so therefore my allegation is a fact,that abbott is a liar,furthermore he is alleged to be a future leader of this country,liberals may want a liar as PM of this country,well I do not,and want nothing to do with people who judge people as guilty when no charges are laid,rather fascist.

  • 20
    Posted Monday, 16 January 2012 at 9:28 pm | Permalink

    Appears you and brandis with his invovlement with the nsw police commisioner have already convicted thompson,was well aware it was an allegation not a charge ,however you implied otherwise in your post ,even lumped him with pedos,actually think you and brandis are fascist in my opinion.
    know how you post so will say I vote for the anti immigration party.

  • 21
    botswana bob
    Posted Monday, 16 January 2012 at 9:41 pm | Permalink

    This is all very very interesting BUT voters have had it with the ALP. Regardless of Newman’s highly likely gaffs during the campaign — he’s a thin-skinned Army recycle — and the contradictions in the Pineapple Party — how they handle coal gas extraction will be one of the great wonders of modern politics with pro-business Liberals gung-ho but the moaning farmers totally opposed — the LNP will win. What happens after that as built-in tensions between the Liberals and the Nats quickly surface should provide considerable raw material for the commentariat.

  • 22
    Gerry Hatrick, OAP
    Posted Monday, 16 January 2012 at 10:36 pm | Permalink

    Ahh SB, you can’t even get baseball right. The MLB would never let their players out to play outside the season, lest they get injured. They don’t play in the olympics, neither for an exhibition in Aus.

  • 23
    Posted Monday, 16 January 2012 at 10:37 pm | Permalink

    Botswana Bob - I am sure the Ltd News commentariat will tell the great unwashed “Don’t you worry about that.”

  • 24
    Suzanne Blake
    Posted Monday, 16 January 2012 at 10:39 pm | Permalink

    @ Gerry Hatrick, OAP

    They did in late 90’s or early 2000’s it was outside season, promotional event.

  • 25
    Suzanne Blake
    Posted Monday, 16 January 2012 at 10:44 pm | Permalink

    @ Gerry Hatrick, OAP

    The Dallas Cowboys & Green Bay Packers Gridiron team played here as well. I was there at Olympic stadium


  • 26
    Posted Monday, 16 January 2012 at 11:44 pm | Permalink

    S.B , as a qlder , i have not seen any Baseball bats yet “

    As a QLD’er I can say the Baseball Bats are at the ready.

    We also don’t like getting beaten by the Welshman, so I’m tipping a *worse* election result for Labor in QLD than the NSW State Election.

    In case what I said is not approved,seems you and brandis judge people guilty without even being charged,understand thompson has never been charged with anything.”

    He hasn’t been charged with anything, but that doesn’t mean he isn’t a scumbag of the highest order.

    His Credit Cards, his drivers license, his signatures and yet he says “someone else didit!”. He’s either corrupt because he let it happen and didn’t tell the police, or he’s corrupt because he did it himself. Take your pick. Either way, class A scumbag that the Labor Party has to clamour onto to save their own skins.

  • 27
    Posted Monday, 16 January 2012 at 11:51 pm | Permalink

    But the LNP haven’t any wits about them. The prospect of them running Queensland is truly alarming.”

    Lest we forget the 20% Rego increases and scrapping of the fuel subsidy weeks after the last election, yet no mention of any of this just before the election.

    Slipped old Blighteys mind did it?

  • 28
    Edward James
    Posted Tuesday, 17 January 2012 at 3:12 am | Permalink

    @ SCHNAPPI. Taking the P(iss) out of the Labor member for Dobell Craig Thomson is so easy. The best any of his supporters can offer in his defense is, he has not been charged with a criminal breach of the law yet. That has no bearing on what voters are discussing. His silence following earlier silly remarks when the allegations of misuse of a HSU credit card, first emerged and all the related “stuff’ still unfolding. Craig Thomson is being by us judged in the court of public opinion. Nothing at all to do with alleged criminal matters, a distraction, which may or may not find their way into law courts. Politicians have for years used the Ombudsman and ICAC and “the law’” as tools to delay our political due process. Labor MP Craig Thomson still enjoys the overt support of Australia’s first liar Prime Minister Guilard. Her conduct as the Leader of the Labor Party is another matter, which will be judged by the peoples court of public opinion in good time. The law courts in another place, and what we do in the ballot box are covered by the so called separation of powers. Edward James

  • 29
    Posted Tuesday, 17 January 2012 at 8:53 am | Permalink

    Funny how you abbott,and shock jocks always refer to the PM as a liar,when in fact abbott is a a bigger liar and hypocrite,the media should be showing a video on YouTube that shows abbott saying a carbon tax is the sensible way to go,then he claims the sky is falling over the carbon tax he stated is sensible,that is fact,and although he has written in blood to destroy the carbon tax which he said is sensible and way to go,abbott is a shallow liar,and obviously cons the party faithful,and for the small minded who tag everyone who is against liars and hypocrites of the libs and nats a lefty,I vote for any party against immigration.

  • 30
    Posted Tuesday, 17 January 2012 at 9:08 am | Permalink

    I think Labor & LNP are set to miss the biggest protest vote of the decade to date.
    Coal seem gas.
    The fact these parties are lobbied hard by highly paid professionals of the industry which has a long history of overstating its own importance and understating its environmental impacts, as we now see in Gunnedah, means the larger parties step lightly so not to offend.
    The Greens and some Independents are not so hobbled. They stand to profit electorally if their respective campaigns are strong enough.

  • 31
    Posted Tuesday, 17 January 2012 at 9:23 am | Permalink

    Edward James - Correction: Australia’s first liar Prime Minister (that I can remember anyway there may have been earlier ones) was John Howard who said there would “never ever be a GST” and that he had “no knowledge” of the Tampa affair. Apparently Peter Reith kept it all to himself . . mmm.
    No excuses for Thomson but no mention of Liberal SA Senator ‘convicted’ of criminal offence last year?
    Take the blinkers off, no side is always right or always wrong and let the first person who has never lied write the first blog!

  • 32
    Peter Ormonde
    Posted Tuesday, 17 January 2012 at 9:31 am | Permalink

    So poll enthusiasts - let’s see your predictions then?

    Tell us what these entrails are telling you. Or is at that, as usual, as the actual polls draw near, the certainties and generalities of last month’s market research fade into the distance.

    I’m running a book.

  • 33
    Jim McDonald
    Posted Tuesday, 17 January 2012 at 9:39 am | Permalink

    The discussion, which has largely been irrelevant, needs to take greater account of Katter’s group and The Greens. I think that in many electorates Labor will become the third party. Any prognostication ignoring that factor will get it wrong.

  • 34
    Suzanne Blake
    Posted Tuesday, 17 January 2012 at 10:24 am | Permalink

    @ Peter Ormonde

    LNP by 8 seats

  • 35
    Suzanne Blake
    Posted Tuesday, 17 January 2012 at 10:30 am | Permalink

    @ Edward James

    Well said on Craig Thompson - Fair Work Australia should be TORCHED as well. Their almost 3 years investigation is an elaborate cover up.

    Any fool could investigate this in 3 months MAX.

  • 36
    Posted Tuesday, 17 January 2012 at 10:50 am | Permalink

    The LNP president got Neuman out of the box and its geed up the farmers and christian conservatives. (the ones in Parliament).
    Truly they don’t have the nous in Parliament because they are weighed down by their cultural Joh baggage from whence they came.
    Of course there’s a bit of that in the Labor side, but the way Andrew Frazer shocked them at the end of the year with a gay civil unions wedge was brilliant and edgy. Just wish the same would happen on other legislation like de-criminilising abortion.

    I think it the R word that holds us all back. I wish Labor would use it. If Tim Mander gets in just imagine a Creationist as Education Minister? Meanwhile I am passionate enough to participate in the commentary at my new blog: http://www.woman-in-labor-politics.blogspot.com
    Queensland of course. cheers!

  • 37
    Son of foro
    Posted Tuesday, 17 January 2012 at 11:10 am | Permalink

    Tell us what these entrails are telling you.

    Bob Katter will be to Cant Do as Bob Brown is to Gillard.

  • 38
    Posted Tuesday, 17 January 2012 at 11:14 am | Permalink

    Coulson , Reith , Poulson , Vaile and Downer to name some who never were charged with various crimes that we , the public , know they were guilty of . None of the investigations took three months and in Coulsons case didn,t finalise until after he was out of politics and no further assistance to the lying Howard . Speaking of Howard , what about the government funds used to address the malfeasance by his brother in a private company ? To my knowledge no other PM had done it before and certainly nobody has since. Is that corruption , cronyism or both ?
    See in the Age that Abbott has clocked up 590.000 dollars in entitlements which is disclosed because he hasn,t verified them , name and shame policy . Seems that the pedal cretin and Peta Credlin can,t get things right concerning responsibilities regarding money matters such as declaring $700,000 loans and now his massive parliament entitlements . Must have to pay firms for all these 30 minute photo shoots to do 50 seconds of work experience . I have that vid mentioned earlier by a poster of Abbott declaring a carbon tax the best option for reducing carbon , looks like a sky interview .

  • 39
    Posted Tuesday, 17 January 2012 at 11:31 am | Permalink

    Katter is a seasoned smart pollie loved by Nth Sth and Centre and his party will hold balance of power with <ten seats.

  • 40
    Posted Tuesday, 17 January 2012 at 11:54 am | Permalink

    @SB - since when have you been concerned about the misuse of union funds, as a matter of principle, or is Thompson yet another useful vector for your ALP bashing (I suspect the latter).

    And as for Fair Work Australia, on what basis do you say that the Thompson investigation can be finalised in 3 months. As a prosecuting lawyer, I can tell you it can take a long time to investigate matters and gather admissible evidence. The only “fool”, therefore, who has shown plain ignorance, yet again, of how investigative agencies and, for that matter prosecutions work, is you.

  • 41
    Suzanne Blake
    Posted Tuesday, 17 January 2012 at 11:58 am | Permalink

    @ Karen

    Its my local member, who has gone missing in the electorate for the last 7 months.

    Thats the public service response. Any halfwit could investigate Thompson and Williams in less than 3 months, unless professional roadblocks were put in place.

    The evidence is all at the brothel, shown on TV (credit card, drivers licence photo, mobile phone records etc).

    3 years is a JOKE, don’t tell me it takes that long.

  • 42
    Suzanne Blake
    Posted Tuesday, 17 January 2012 at 12:00 pm | Permalink

    @ Oldfootyhead

    The GST was implemented badly. The State committed to axes a whole range of taxes and Costello did not ensure that happened.

  • 43
    zut alors
    Posted Tuesday, 17 January 2012 at 12:10 pm | Permalink


    Apparently, assembling solid evidence couldn’t be easier - almost effortlessly, SB has a raft of it to hand. I fear her venerable talents are sorely wasted here on the Crikey blogs.

  • 44
    Son of foro
    Posted Tuesday, 17 January 2012 at 12:25 pm | Permalink

    Edward James

    Do you think there is a difference between a lie and a broken promise? Interested in your thoughts there.

    Especially in regard to the Coalition going to the last election and telling the nation that they’re costings had been audited when, as we now know, they weren’t. Was that a lie?

    Also interested in your thoughts on Mr Abbott’s lie/broken promise on Medicare when in government and this quote:

    Well, Laurie, when I made that statement, in the election campaign, I had not the slightest inkling that there would ever be any intention to change this. But obviously when circumstances change, governments do change their opinions, and that is actually the responsible course of action.” Tony Abbott

    Also your thoughts on this quote from Mr Abbott:

    “I say that interest rates will always be lower under a coalition government.” Tony Abbott.

    Is that lie?

  • 45
    Suzanne Blake
    Posted Tuesday, 17 January 2012 at 12:28 pm | Permalink

    @ Son of foro.

    “I say that interest rates will always be lower under a coalition government.” Tony Abbott.

    Is that lie?”

    Generally fact, as The LNP dont blow and wste as much as Labor.

    Dont forget NO LABOR SURPLUS for around 22 years now. They are poor as spending money, more money in the economy, inflation pressures, interest rates up.

    They are low now as economy is stuffed.

  • 46
    Filth Dimension
    Posted Tuesday, 17 January 2012 at 12:47 pm | Permalink

    This use to be a place for intelligent debate. sigh.

  • 47
    Filth Dimension
    Posted Tuesday, 17 January 2012 at 12:51 pm | Permalink

    and proper spelling & grammar.

    Used to be.

  • 48
    Peter Ormonde
    Posted Tuesday, 17 January 2012 at 12:54 pm | Permalink

    Stuffed? That would be a technical term I’d imagine Ms Blake - perhaps from the arcane world of your “foresnic auditing”. How is the economy “stuffed” exactly?
    Try to limit the whining about how everyone has stopped buying and going into debt. This is a good thing.

    Interesting notion isn’t it folks that increasing the liquidity sloshing about in the economy through government spending drives interest rates up. Who would have thought? Or are you suggesting Sooz that we Aussie battlers with mortgages and credit cards are in some way competing for funds with the Government? Just our government or is that all governments?

    Please read this post to your cockatiel. I ask in the desperate hope that she might learn something. Poor bird - she must be going spare for want of intelligent conversation.

  • 49
    Son of foro
    Posted Tuesday, 17 January 2012 at 1:25 pm | Permalink


    Is it a lie? None of this Labor makes interest rates go both up and down because of incompetence, whereas the Coalition makes interest rates go both up and down because of competence. That’s juvenile nonsense and makes conversation impossible.

    Is it a lie?

    “I say that interest rates will always be lower under a coalition government.” Tony Abbott.

    What about this one, is this a lie?

    “Under the coalition interest rates are always lower than under Labor.” Joe Hockey.

    And the claim that the Coalition made to the nation before the last election that their figures had been audited, is that a lie?

    Three statements from the Coalition. How many lies?

  • 50
    Posted Tuesday, 17 January 2012 at 2:20 pm | Permalink

    @ SB - The whistleblower has alleged widespread rorting by Thompson amongst others of the union executive. Thompson, in denying the allegations at this stage, puts identity in issue. Who knows how far and how wide this investigation may run, given the scope of the allegations to date.

    The Fair Work Australia investigation, I suspect, will involve a number of audits and investigations into audit processes and witnesses not only within the relevant union but venues where the Thompson card has alleged to have been used, to start with. Statements will need to be taken and other documentary evidence and material will be obtained in the process.

    The police may re-involve themselves again depending on the outcome, which will be a separate investigation, followed by the involvement of relevant prosecution agencies (depending on the seriousness of the charges) who receive a brief of evidence and whose task it is to determine whether there is sufficient evidence to lay charges - DPP prosecutors need to be satisfied there is a prima facie case and whether there a reasonable prospects of conviction before a prosecution is commenced. Charges may also change at the recommendation of the prosecutor,either at the stage of laying charges, or sometimes at the committal or even pre-trial stages. All of these involve the preparation of legal advice by lawyers and determinations by the DPP and or his deputies in accordance with established legal principles.

    Frauds, as with fraud investigations and prosecutions, in particular, can be sophisticated and notoriously complex and time-consuming matters.

    And now that this has become a recent media issue where allegations have been made about Thompson and other players, you can expect to wait even longer for an outcome, as these matters become the subject of further scrutiny and possible investigation. So, no, I have to disagree with you that an investigation and hearing such as this can be wrapped up in a blink of an eye, such as the three month time-frame you have suggested. Your response is highly uneducated, if I can put it politely.

    And, by the way, what would you know about the public service, let alone the work of statutory authority and police investigation and prosecution work to talk about “public service responses” in that derisory way, given you have previously admitted you have never worked in the public service. Your ignorance is breath-taking.