Happy trails

As the election campaign enters a hiatus, a look at where the leaders have been and why.

As the Easter/Anzac Day suspension of hostilities begins, it may be instructive to look at where the leaders have travelled during the campaign’s preliminary phase. Featured over the fold is a display listing the electorates that have been targeted, as best as I can tell, and a very brief summary of what they were up to while they were there. Certain entries are in italics where it is seems clear that the area was not targeted for its electoral sensitivity, such as Bill Shorten’s visit to Melbourne’s West Gate Tunnel project to get some good vision presenting him as a champion of infrastructure, which happened to place him in the unloseable Labor seat of Gellibrand. There are also a few entries that clearly targeted more than one electorate, in which case the margin for the secondary elected is listed on a second line.

What stands out is that Scott Morrison has hit a number of Labor-held seats, consistent with the optimistic impression the Liberals are presenting about their prospects – an assessment which, on this evidence, does not look to be fully shared by Labor. The only activity of Shorten’s that had Labor territory as its primary target was his visit to the Northern Territory on Thursday. Of equal interest to Shorten’s pattern of travel is the clarity of Labor’s early campaign theme of health policy, in contrast of the grab bag of messages promoted by Scott Morrison.

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.

720 comments on “Happy trails”

  1. Andrew_Earlwood says:
    Saturday, April 20, 2019 at 4:41 pm

    “Neo liberalism” is a post facto pop left construct to label things it doesn’t like and/or doesn’t understand. You are an exemplar of this stupid groupthink Guytaur.

    As Gandalf would say “fool of a Took!”

    😆

    Currently rereading The Two Towers for the nth time and just passed that scene.

  2. C@t:

    They still mock Asians. Remember Senator McDonald’s remark only the other week that all Asians have the same surname or wtte.

  3. Rex Douglas @ #490 Saturday, April 20th, 2019 – 5:39 pm

    EGW @ #480 Saturday, April 20th, 2019 – 5:37 pm

    Rex Douglas @ #457 Saturday, April 20th, 2019 – 5:24 pm

    Firefox @ #451 Saturday, April 20th, 2019 – 5:18 pm

    “Firefox

    I came across a few persons of your ilk ”

    I’ve come across plenty of people like you too, mate. You’re nothing more than a right wing troll who will say anything and stoop to any low to try and attack the Greens. You’ll even use First Australians – who are fiercely opposed to fracking in the NT – to do so. You are an absolute disgrace.

    Let’s not get too personal , Ff.

    Winning the policy debate is more than fulfilling. 🙂

    How would you know Rex? You have never had that experience.

    Have we met before… ?

    I hope not and hope we never do.

  4. I have no specific commentary to make on Chrisensen or his marriage arrangements.

    The horrible truth is that for some Filipinas the only way out of horrific destitution is by accepting marriage with someone who is wealthy – utterly regardless of all their other attributes.
    Such women then often become important conduits for helping their extended families deal with their utter destitution.
    Talking about destitution, one of my really bad moments was visiting an area of mangroves on the outskirts of Manila for a spot of birdwatching.
    There were hammocks in the mangroves.
    I was informed that the people living in the mangroves were illegal squatters who had fled the countryside because of poverty.
    So, I would leave Christensen’s spouse out of the politicking.
    He is fair game.
    Whatever the circumstances, which we have no idea of, she is not.

  5. Confessions

    Don’t forget the LNP telling us our country has no problems with racism.

    Having a go at Christensen over the money for the travel is fair enough.
    Not so McDonalds comments to Senator Wong.

    The good thing is McDonald won’t be there next time 🙂

  6. Well, that’s alright then. Abbott, Turnbull, Morrison, Joyce and Taylor had nothing to do with the water buybacks.
    Nothing at all.
    It was Wong and Bligh wot done it.
    Problem solved.

  7. I don’t know.
    Can you really claim that the deal has got absolutely nothing to do with you when you, on behalf of the taxpayers of Australia, sign the deal?
    Might you not want to know whether there was a tender process for $80 million’s worth of water.

  8. Confessions

    Oh. I may have missed someone else saying but both Barrie Cassidy and the producer Samuels have made twitter comments indicating Waterbuybackgate is going to be covered.

  9. “Give me a nudge when they actually increase newstart….”…. I will, but don’t forget that they will never be able to do so unless we vote ALP ahead of Libs/Nats/LNP at the election.

  10. “Guytaur, the fact that those high priests of the American pop left – sanders and Reich – use the term neoliberalism are two very good reasons to avoid the word in intellectual conversations altogether.”…

    Andrew, “neoliberalism” (written: neo-liberalism) was used by Milton Friedman of the Chicago School of Economics way back in 1951, for instance in the article: “Neo-Liberalism and its Prospects” published in Farmand, 17 February 1951, pp. 89-93. It’s not a word invented by the critics of neoliberalism (“high priests of the American pop left”??), it’s a word invented by the neoliberals themselves!
    The neoliberals did stop using the word at some stage, which is a good reason to keep using it. The neoliberals believe that if there is no name for their ideology, it’s more difficult to pin it down and criticise it.

  11. Alpo @ #516 Saturday, April 20th, 2019 – 6:10 pm

    “Guytaur, the fact that those high priests of the American pop left – sanders and Reich – use the term neoliberalism are two very good reasons to avoid the word in intellectual conversations altogether.”…

    Andrew, “neoliberalism” (written: neo-liberalism) was used by Milton Friedman of the Chicago School of Economics way back in 1951, for instance in the article: “Neo-Liberalism and its Prospects” published in Farmand, 17 February 1951, pp. 89-93. It’s not a word invented by the critics of neoliberalism (“high priests of the American pop left”??), it’s a word invented by the neoliberals themselves!
    The neoliberals did stop using the word at some stage, which is a good reason to keep using it. The neoliberals believe that if there is no name for their ideology, it’s more difficult to pin it down and criticise it.

    It is also in wide use including by economists such as Paul Krugman and John Quiggin.

  12. Oops that was a reply to Boerwar’s question:

    Can you really claim that the deal has got absolutely nothing to do with you when you, on behalf of the taxpayers of Australia, sign the deal?

  13. Jordan @ #3174 Saturday, April 20th, 2019 – 6:10 pm

    Question: If water buyback story gets legs, how badly will this affect the Coalition? Will it seal the deal for Bill?

    Nah. The water buyback story has a smell (possibly of rotting fins, rather than legs), but any story that combines the key words Joyce, Taylor, Water buyback, millions and Cayman Islands is poisonous to the LNP – particularly with the great unmoved around the Easter silly season before a bloodletting election. Can’t see ScuMo surviving this.

  14. Pegasus: “Paul Keating launches an assault on trickledown economics at the launch of the book Fair Share”

    I think you’ll find Paul Keating launched an assault on trickledown economics from the moment his father’s business idea was unreasonably denied financing, and has continued that assault unremittingly ever-after.

  15. Real life beckons….Vale Heather our 21 year old cow. A beautiful gentle creature who lived out her days in the Tasmanian sunshine and snow and rain. Gave us 9 overly calves and in return never took the truck ride to that other place.

    Bovines are wonderful.

  16. A guy going overseas for a Filipino bride is common. Nothing wrong with it. These marriages usually work out well, better than the average. The Filipino women have a strong community network in Australia – as they would anywhere- and most husbands happily get involved too.

  17. The Hawke-Keating economic agenda was a unique Australian creation. I certainly didn’t agree with every aspect of it but it was not a “small government” agenda along Friedman lines. It took elements from a number of strands of economic thinking and wove them together in a way that was thought to be of best advantage to Australia. I think it went too far in dismantling centralised wage fixing, although it was definitely necessary to institutionalise productivity bargaining in some form.

    It strengthened the social wage (medicare etc) and built an enormous investment fund (superannuation) which essentially has to be managed in the interest of its beneficiaries (workers) rather than capitalist nabobs.

    The LNP have nibbled way at bits of it but the basic architecture is still there decades later. It bears little resemblance to the systems built by the acolytes of Friedman et al.

    As with all such systems, it needs constant maintenance and updating to respond to changing circumstances, activities which I hope the Shorten government will be applying itself to in a bit over a month.

  18. AJM

    That’s why I refer to it as being in the neo liberal era. Like you I see Hawke and Keating as a long way away from the policies of Thatcher and Reagan.

    Just as Wayne Swans approach was stimulus not austerity in response to the financial crisis.

    Not a neo liberal approach. The LNP on the other hand is a different story

  19. This was retweeted by Alex, son of Malcolm Turnbull

    Media
    Likes
    Alex Turnbull’s Tweets
    Alex Turnbull Retweeted

    I-C-A-N
    @ICAN_AUSPOL
    ·
    2h
    @lenoretaylor
    the voters & kids DESERVE a media conference PRONTO, with Angus & Barnaby !!
    The question is – will they do it ?
    We ALL know it’s unlikely that that will front.
    Show us your true colours
    @Barnaby_Joyce

    @AngusTaylorMP

    #watergate
    #IndependentsDay
    #auspol2019
    Quote Tweet

    Lenore Taylor
    @lenoretaylor
    · 3h
    Coalition faces calls for inquiry into Murray-Darling deals signed by Barnaby Joyce (link: https://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/2019/apr/20/coalition-faces-calls-for-inquiry-into-murray-darling-deals-signed-by-barnaby-joyce?CMP=Share_iOSApp_Other) theguardian.com/australia-news…

  20. Breaking News the coalition are back in the game with the latest Ipsos poll putting them ahead 51/49 and our great PM Morrison is going to win on May 18 election

    And poor old shorten will be dumped as opposition leader…..

  21. antonbruckner11 @ #470 Saturday, April 20th, 2019 – 5:31 pm

    There is a suggestion in the Roni Salt thread that, at the time of the buyback, the two farms owed the Cayman parent coy $80 million. That, presumably, was their accumulated losses. That raises the suspicion of course that the amount of the buyback was not determined by the value of the water sold but the amount needed to clear the debts of the farms. We shall see!

    They owed ‘interest’ on ‘loans’ from their parent company.

  22. mundo @ #524 Saturday, April 20th, 2019 – 6:26 pm

    Real life beckons….Vale Heather our 21 year old cow. A beautiful gentle creature who lived out her days in the Tasmanian sunshine and snow and rain. Gave us 9 overly calves and in return never took the truck ride to that other place.

    Bovines are wonderful.

    A touching story mundo.
    Thanks for revealing that side of yourself.

  23. Victoria

    The LNP trolls must be complaining overtime.

    Too late of course now that Hamish McDonald has taken it up.
    I hope she is back soon

  24. LNP only 3 point programme
    1. Flat tax ( same tax for low and high income earners)
    2. Tax cuts for rich and large companies
    3. Funding Cut to important services.
    They have another program i.e. no action climate change.

  25. The pretend buyback of water rights in the Darling (and the Murray) has been a scandal with a whole of buybacks of rights which had never and probably could never be exercised being paid for. Years ago irrigation rights from the Darling were handed out freely and way beyond what could ever have been extracted. Graziers often took them out as a sort of drought insurance or thinking they might get into horticulture some day. The cotton etc interests exploited these historic permits and basically paid nothing for their original water licences. Most lower Darling ones never happened apart from the Tandou/Menindie Lakes foolishness.

    This was followed by the foolishness in recent years of buying back flow diversion rights but allowing the irrigators to extract underground water adjacent the rivers (clearly the same water). And the flood diversion perversity to buy back water which only appears when there is a flood but produces nothing in most years when flows are lower.

    Then of course the irrigators and LNP think it is a good idea to have public funding of dams to allow the irrigators to continue to plunder public resources.

    The SA Royal Commission dealt with some of these issues. Scandals need to be exposed. If National voters in western NSW can see the problem I’m sure the rest of us can too if the information is provided.

  26. Bill mentioned the water rort on ABC News and was contradicted by the reporter. Something fishy doing on at the ABC.

    Ita’s there for a reason.

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