Dec 12, 2016

Rundle: Conroy moves to Big Gambling, Labor on a losing streak

If Labor keeps joining the banks, the global corporations, the industry bodies, it is not just the political party that will end up the loser.

Guy Rundle — Correspondent-at-large

Guy Rundle


When it was announced last week that former minister Stephen Conroy had taken a major position with gambling industry lobbyist, ahaha, Responsible Wagering Australia, the reaction was resigned, rather than angry. Coming on top of everything that has happened to the left and progressives in 2016, it was just a kiss of the whip.


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31 thoughts on “Rundle: Conroy moves to Big Gambling, Labor on a losing streak

  1. Charles Richardson

    Great stuff, Guy. One quibble, though: “… you cannot base a party of collective advancement on an individualised and atomised social life.” But as you’ve just pointed out, the thing about addiction is its destruction of individual autonomy. It’s the denial of individualism, not its realisation. I presume that’s why you put “choice” in scare quotes in para 8 – because it isn’t real choice at all, and so can’t be real individualism.

    1. Bob the builder

      I don’t think an “individualised” life is the same as individualism. One is lonely, the other is self-sufficient.

  2. zut alors

    What If…Rudd had held firm to his CPRS policy, a grateful ALP and electorate had returned him to government & Conroy, who actually understood the Communications portfolio, had rolled out the five-star NBN to such extent that Abbott/Turnbull weren’t game to meddle with it once in power. I’m dreamin’…

    Instead… Australia has no CPRS (or anything remotely like it), a third rate NBN with ballooning costs and a previously competent Communications Minister selling his soul to become a stooge for the gambling industry. Reality sucks.

  3. form1planet

    I hadn’t even bothered to read beyond the headlines about Conroy, it seemed like just another redundant data point confirming the already well established ‘world is fukt’ hypothesis. Trust Rundle to turn it into a scorching indictment of somebody who I would once have considered to be, well, at least not as fukt as the rest, and the endless dragging mediocrity of the whole system in which these time-worn processes are embedded. You don’t even get the sense that you’re up against some serious evil, just a bunch of half-competent self-serving twats who will follow the path of least resistance until they end up screwing us all. “Manless faces” indeed.

    1. AR

      Manless faces and men without navels.

  4. Josh Mehlman

    Although fig leaves are edible, dolmades are made from grape vine leaves

    1. David Irving (no relation)

      While technically accurate, that would’ve ruined the metaphor.

  5. Matthew Davey

    When The Greens eventually eclipse the ALP as the party of ‘the left’, we will be able to look back on excellent articles like this one to explain why.

  6. Nudiefish

    Thank you Guy, inspired piece.
    I am amazed that more isn’t being written on the pending demise of the once great Labor party. The ALP has been taking on a serious amount of water for at least a decade. Now that it has become standard practice for ex-Labor politicians to beg for rent-seeking corporate “jobs” after a lifetime in the golden trenches why can’t they see that the party is over? One stands in the ballot box with pencil a quiver and reflects upon a “Labor” party which fought for a TPP, promotes funding to wealthy private schools and had to be dragged kicking and screaming to a position on equality for SSM.

    Sometimes you can just see the writing on the wall. If they can’t take a principled stand against this currant mob of brain-dead reactionary LNP corporate stooges they never will prevail – ever. In time Labor will slowly shape-shift into a slightly less toxic version of the conservatives and nobody will care. The people will have deserted them, and that is their fate.

  7. ian smith

    Another reason why perks for ex-politicians/ministers are now no longer justified.
    Time to get rid of them now that paid positions are so readily on offer.

    1. Damon

      Indeed! The old rationale that they gave up on a lucrative career and thus need compensation for their service seems rather outdated, now, doesn’t it?

  8. Joe Fitzpatrick

    “… when the populist impulse hits Australia …”
    Fascinating aside. I wonder what form that populist impulse is likely to take?

  9. Elbow Patches

    Very disappointing. I don’t understand the attraction. Gambling is so damn tacky. It wouldn’t be worth the money to associate yourself with that industry. When they have a secure pension and no doubt plenty of other opportunities.

  10. Dog's Breakfast

    Well, I tend to look more at appointments to resource company jobs after you’ve just approved some world destroying coal mines more egregious in the great scheme of things. There will definitely be no choice about the outcomes from increased carbon emissions, whatever they end up being, as opposed to the freedom for a pokies gambler to pluck out their eyes and put sticks in their ears.

    But yeah, point taken.

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