Forty-second parliament: open thread

Those wishing to discuss Australian politics are invited to do so here rather than here.

Author: William Bowe

William Bowe is a Perth-based election analyst and occasional teacher of political science. His blog, The Poll Bludger, has existed in one form or another since 2004, and is one of the most heavily trafficked websites on Australian politics.

701 comments on “Forty-second parliament: open thread”

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  1. quite simply
    today australia took the first tenous steps toward nationhod as a mature and committed society.
    i applaud All politicians who in their hearts sympathise with the “sorry” motion
    we can but be a better people for it

  2. Just posted this on the previous thread. Then noticed. Thanks William.

    What an excellent performance tonight.

    A Local Man. Ben Chifley. Written Bob Ellis etc. Performed by Tony Barry. Brilliantly portrayed. Followed by a Q and A session, when Mr Barry responded to queries from the audience.

    Mr Barry expressed his sincerity, in not only his role, but his responses, especially in advocating that the (receptive) audience participate in the ‘Sorry’ Parliament, tomorrow morning.

    Mr Barry clearly acts the role of Ben Chifley, as a believer in fairness, justice, hope.

    And invites us, as we know, to believe in the same.

  3. Hi William

    Yep, we are taking the first step in our future development…can’t let on too much, but it’s all good.

    Consensus is needed to set this nation up for the next boom…food.

    Rudd is on the right track on this 2020 summit…but the detractors will see it differently.

    The conservatives are in a position of having to cooperate…funny that.

  4. Can we be a better nation for such a simple word like sorry? I hope so. With indigenous people as a focus topic at th 20/20 summit we will see where we can go from here. As it is said “past wrongs, future rights”!

  5. Aborigines will joyously celebrate today & so they should

    They will be disappointed the Liberal Party leaders did not so joyously embrace the apology statement as Labor have so unambigously done

    However Aborigines will be very satisfied that Rudd’s firm leadership on the issue has committed the Liberals to Labor policy from which they can never retreat.

    Will the practical challenges of bridging the gap in Aboriginal disadvantage
    be long term or will we see some positive outcomes by the next Election ?

  6. Ron,
    Not the day to pick a fight with the Libs – they got there in the end (and the late production of the wording hardly helped them).
    Today’s more a day to reflect on the significance of the events of the past, and on the apology, and on all the things that still need to happen.

  7. Hope you all got a glimpse of Wilson Tuckey ostentatiously absenting himself from the Welcome to Country ceremony. He looked a right prat.

    What a beginning to the 42nd Parliament yesterday — dignified, restrained, moving. And Horatio did and said all the right things as well. Go Ruddster.

  8. Yes, hooray, we finally made it. What a momentous day for all Australians, I realise that it is at this stage symbolic only, but hey, that matters!
    Now the challenge is on to turn that symbolism into reality in helping our Indigenous peoples overcome the last 200 years of neglect and worse. I for one will be judging our new government on how well they manage this.
    I posted this on the other thread last night I know but how impressive is Fred Cheney, inspiring in his compassion and genuine understanding of the issues.

  9. Parlianment returns! and what an interesting parlianment is should be with Rudd travelling well but with a few storm clouds ahead to keep him on his toes and Lord Nelson standing on the desk of the HMS Liberal as it slowly sinks.

  10. Not the day to pick a fight with the Libs, but I’ll make an exception for Tuckey – he’s a complete fool.
    During the O’Connor count, when at one stage there was a (theoretical) chance that the National candidate could unseat him, I reckon both the Nationals (gain an extra seat) and the Liberals (lose their biggest idiot) must have been hoping the Nationals fellow could get up. Alas, not to be, and the Liberal leadership will have to endure another three years of his mindless public commentary on all manner of things.

  11. its already being shown live on Prime network this morning, should be on ABC soon.
    Will be shown live on the big screen in Fed Sq Melbourne, (so commuters get to see it on their way to work!) and In Perth city as well, many getting up very early over there to watch it in town. Dunno about the other cities

  12. Morning fellow PB’s –
    and what a day it is!
    Watching parliament open yesterday and then hearing the speakers on 7.30 report was so moving. And plaudits to Brendan Nelson who after all the nonsense did a fine job. Today is about reconciliation, and perhaps that crosses the political divide as well. (just for an hour or 2, or life would be no fun) .

  13. Did anyone watch Wilson Tuckey on Sky News? What an absolutely REPULSIVE man! That child cannot control his temper at all, and cannot answer anything like a mature man of his age.

  14. I posted this yesterday on the other thread: “I always thought this country of mine has no soul. I think we have found our soul. The heritage of our indigenous comrades is our soul. I saw that today and I hope to see it again tomorrow”.

    Just watched Rudd’s speech. I saw it again. Yes, we have found our soul.

    Bloody hell, tears in my eyes. I have not wasted my vote on Rudd. Can you imagine that Rudd’s speech was delivered by Obama. It will bring the heaven down.

  15. Many years ago, growing up through high school, I remember having the attitude of not wanting to apologise for the actions of previous generations over which I had no part. However, today is the first day in my life that I remember being proud of the actions of my Government.

    Thank you Kevin Rudd, for speaking for me and bringing about something 3-4 years ago I thought would never happen. And thank you Brendan Nelson for providing the bi-partisanship that was needed on this issue.

  16. Yeah, Nelson’s speech might not be as good, but the mere fact that the leader of the federal liberal party is making it, makes it all the more important. This is an important step for them as a party.

  17. Re nelsons speech…….i’m not sure if i have quite digested some parts of it, but it seemed to me on first hearing that he was trying to have it a bit both ways, saying sorry but also making “excuses” for the removal and implying atht it wasn’t bad…….and then taht bit about there shoudln’t be any compensation etc……was this really necessary on this occasion?……

  18. 29

    Today a great thing is happening, something that’s been gnawing away through the Howard years, something that should never have been allowed to fester is being addressed with decency and respect.

    I was explaining to my 7 year old why the Prime Minister was on the radio saying ‘sorry’. I told him that many years ago people had the attitude that Aborigines would ‘die out’ so we took their children away. I told him this was ‘complicated’, but now we realise that it was wrong and caused a huge amount of suffering, so now, finally, we are saying ‘sorry’.

    Quick as a flash he shot back: “that’s not ‘complicated'”

    The other great thing that’s happening today is that the divisive politicking over this issue, the Howard wedge and small mindedness is being put in the dustbin of history. Good riddance.

    Kevin, you’ve done a truly wonderful thing, decently and with great dignity, and we are with you.

  19. Effing brilliant, a bipartisan War Cabinet on housing and the Constitution Amendment. You have to hand it to Rudd for his strategic vision.

    BTW: Whitlam, Fraser, Hawke and Keating was there. Where is JWH? Shame on you rodent for having such a small mind and heart.

  20. the finnigans @ 32: i think it would have been pretty offensive to have el rodente there!
    i feel incredibly proud of kevin et al.
    horatio nelson – couldn’t help himself! couldn’t just say a heartfelt sorry and leave it there. abbott was on ABC radio this morning being his usual offensive self – same old stuff: “good for them” etc. i nearly threw up.

  21. I have my reservations about Nelson’s response, as did many on the lawns outside apparently, but in the new bi-partisan spirit I will keep them to myself. I guess in fairness he was between a rock and a hard place.

  22. Yeah the bipartisan committee idea was genius. Probably both politically and in terms of outcome.

    I’m glad JWH wasn’t there, really. It would have made the event superficial if even he could be part of it….

  23. 32
    The Finnigans

    Hey Finn, who’s the ‘me too’ politician now, eh??? LOL

    Good to see Horatio Hornblower following the leader of Australia with his fractious party of mean spirited hacks falling into line.

    Bravo Rudd, a real leader, not a dessicated little coconut.

  24. 35

    yeah, the little toad is not even ‘history’ anymore! He’s the rodent who cannot show his face.

    Perfectly fitting, don’t ya reckon?

    Whitlam, Fraser, Hawke and Keating all have a lot to be proud of, the rodent’s abscence says it all really.

  25. #36 – KR – I have never questioned Obama’s oratory skill. I don’t want to start another war, especially not today or on this thread.

  26. “However, several Liberal MPs appear to have boycotted the historic apology.

    After loudly reciting the Lord’s Prayer, WA Liberal Wilson Tuckey walked out of the chamber and fellow WA Liberal Don Randall is also not currently present.

    NSW Liberal Alby Schultz, who also told The Australian Online yesterday that he was reserving his right not to attend, was not present. And Victorian Liberal Sophie Mirabella was also not in the chamber. ”

    Typical spiteful hacks. They SAY they will support the apology in the party room, but then they can’t actually do it in practice. They should be held in contempt.

  27. TheFinnigans, yer I noticed Howard was the only missing one, I had read that all living ex-PMs were invited to attend as special guests, and Fraser had personally requested Howard, who declined the invitation. Gough is an old sick man, and may have been forgiven if he couldn’t make it on health grounds, but Howard declining the invite is just appalling.
    And onyer Melbourne Mates in Fed Square! Yay, around 3/4 of the crowd turned their backs on Nelson’s speech at the Intervention point, and then the tangent of the veterans? *sheesh* Nelson, you started off fine, but you should have quit while you were ahead, but then you really blew any brownie points from me!
    and hey Go the Ruddy one 🙂 I’m really impressed, a real 5-tissue tear-jerker LOL – my vote not wasted, and the bi-partisan offer was a really cool strategy, with just a hint of “pay-back”!

  28. Yes. Rudd’s speech was heartening to watch. He was composed and thoughtful. Congratulations on a job well done. Congratulations too to everyone present for having the decency to keep quiet and show respect. It’s probably a good thing that that moron Tuckey absented himself from proceedings as it would have been just like his crude manners to interject and try and disrupt the speech. A great day for Australia. Here’s to the future.

  29. “After loudly reciting the Lord’s Prayer, WA Liberal Wilson Tuckey walked out of the chamber and fellow WA Liberal Don Randall was also reported absent .

    NSW Liberal Alby Schultz, who told The Australian Online yesterday that he was reserving his right not to attend, was not present. And Victorian Liberal Sophie Mirabella was also not in the chamber.”

    Says it all really and goes some way to explaining why Nelson was so appalling. He is being wedged by his own pathetic party. Tuckey and his ilk are a disgrace to the parliament, and a disgrace to Australia. Until they kick out the type of right-wing scum named above the Liberals get nowhere.

  30. Was I seeing things but half way though Nelson’s speech I’m sure Petro (Kooyong) was a sleep, cleary the Doctor’s wives have been keeping him up late.

    I noticed a few Liberal MP’s were absance, but over all a very good speech by PM Rudd, while Nelson’s speech was good, at times he appeared very soft and less committed to what he was saying.

    I like PM Rudd’s joint committee idea, it is very good politics and hopefully bring successful outcomes.

    Today is one of those few days when we can say our Parlianment earnt it’s keep and I agreed with Nelson’s point that the moment should remind the Pollies that Laws sometimes have unintended consequences.

  31. 38
    The Finnigans

    Ah, sorry? I think you missed the reference, it was to all those Liberal whingers who last year kept saying that Rudd was just the ‘me too’ candidate.

    Well, look at him now! Doesn’t look like he’s ‘me too’, in fact Horatio Hornblower is filling that role, ah, how shall we say…’admirably’? LOL

  32. I caught a glimpse of Cossie. He was sort of twitching around and looked rather uncomfortable. Maybe not because of “Sorry” but rather he was on the wrong side and on the back bench. Poor Cossie, the sooner he goes to the Big Mac, the better for his soul.

  33. [I caught a glimpse of Cossie. He was sort of twitching around and looked rather uncomfortable. Maybe not because of “Sorry” but rather he was on the wrong side and on the back bench. Poor Cossie, the sooner he goes to the Big Mac, the better for his soul.]
    He was probably reflecting on the fact that if he wasn’t so gutless he could’ve been in a position to be the P.M. who moved such an apology motion.

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