Queensland

Apr 3, 2014

Newman v the doctors: a political fight that is poisoning the LNP

The Queensland government his locked into a nasty dispute with doctors, and voters are sick of it. Mark Bahnisch, commentator and Centre for Policy Development fellow, says the result is considerable ill will.

If there was one issue aside from privatisation that doomed Anna Bligh’s government to defeat, it was healthcare. Health had been a running sore for successive Labor administrations in Queensland. If it wasn’t the spectacularly expensive payroll bungle, it was the revelations, aired in a royal commission and successive criminal trials, of alleged criminal malpractice by Jayant Patel, nicknamed “Dr Death”. Or it was a self-styled Tahitian Prince living it up on embezzled millions.

10 comments

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10 thoughts on “Newman v the doctors: a political fight that is poisoning the LNP

  1. rhwombat

    Noddy and his well educated Health Minister are just following Peter Costello’s prescription. The SMO cats that they are trying to herd are very bright, very dedicated and very angry. Noddy & Springborg are mincemeat.

  2. zut alors

    Newman seems to think he can re-enact the unprecedented coup Sir Joh pulled when he replaced the striking SEQEB employees in 1985. In a sensational move he sacked hundreds & advertised their jobs in full page ads in The Courier-Mail & interstate newspapers.

    Newman is planning the medical version of putting power workers under the thumb. However, Sir Joh was rat cunning – whereas Newman lacks the vital cunning bit.

  3. ianjohnno

    I doubt if Newman has a clue what happens in QLD public hospitals, or what these talented and dedicated medicos actually do.

    The average engineer – like Newman – is not anywhere near.

    Perhaps he is pandering to the element that think it wonderful that cuzzin Brayddonn is earning $100K driving trucks in the Pilbara, but are outraged that talent orders of magnitude superior are paid so much more.

  4. Noelene Turton

    Newman is akin to one of the bwurocrats here in NSW who when he changed a staggerred shift system to everyone starting at the same time made the comment “Running a radiology service is no different to running a laundry system’ Alas they forget patients aren’t as easily managed as clothes.

  5. AR

    There’ll be a few well chosen words in Campy’s shell-like and pseshal provisions made for pseshal peoples like SMO & their ilk. The rest can go hang, just like laundry.

  6. Dubious Virtue

    “bureaucracy is notoriously cumbersome and unresponsive.’

    Examples please.

    If I can’t respond to your query immediately, I’ll get back to you in less than 24 hours.

    I suspect you mean “bureaucracy is notoriously cumbersome and unresponsive” for complex mufti-department issues. It wold be no different to me asking you to give me a list of all the gifts you have given to your lovers over the past decade, the costs, places of purchase, and reasons for the gifts by the end of the week.

    Sure, we may have the paperwork for a project but there have been two staff changes since the project finished so we need to go back and look at things. Because if we provide information with the slightest bit missing there’s all hell to pay and some sound bite journalist will be then writing that we don’t know what we’re doing (ignoring the fact that to do things faster people will have to be taken off line from their regular tasks).

    By saying “the bureaucracy is notoriously cumbersome and unresponsive” all you are doing is just providing further ammunition to hate on the service, a great sound bite for the government, and further justification for privatisation. Thanks.

  7. thelorikeet

    @dubious value – even Mark’s defence he seems to have been referring to the Queensland Health bureaucracy specifically. The charge may stick.

    More generally, Fallen Minister Flegg was on the radio this morning trying to explain the evils of the SMOs negotiators: the goalposts were always shifting; agree with one union and another union stands in the way! Poor possum didn’t seem to understand he was actually saying “we (the government) are incompetently negotiating”.

    Maybe Newman had again stuffed up with his Captain’s Pick of DG in Ian Maynard, another BCC boffin. No industrial relations background, no health background. But maybe I misunderstand the Scripture Union …

  8. Blair Martin

    @thelorikeet – exactly “Scripture Union”. Beware the real devil (pun intended) in the detail here – Bruce McIver, president & founder of the Qld LNP, a nastier operator would be hard to find.

  9. Chris Hartwell

    The only issue causing slow-down is the need – state parliament mandated mind you – to go through oh-so-many checks at each step of the process. Our department regularly delivers, when called up at 4pm on Friday and told “Oh, have that ready by 10am Monday.”

    @ianjohno – I choose to interpret your comment as meaning that therefore exceptional engineers are the ones who keep things running. Thank you 🙂

  10. ianjohnno

    Chris Hartwell @9
    …exceptional engineers are the ones who keep things running.
    Too right they do.

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