The second morning after

A second thread for discussion of the post-election aftermath, as the Coalition waits to see if it will make it to a parliamentary majority, and Labor licks it wounds and prepared to choose a new leader.

I had a paywalled piece in Crikey yesterday giving my immediate post-result impressions, which offered observations such as the following:

Unexpected as all this was, the underlying dynamic is not new, and should be especially familiar to those whose memories extend to Mark Latham’s defeat at the hands of John Howard in 2004. Then as now, the northern Tasmanian seats of Bass and Braddon flipped from Labor to Liberal, with forestry policy providing the catalyst on that occasion, and Labor performed poorly in the outer suburbs, reflected in yesterday’s defeat in Lindsay and its failure to win crucial seats on the fringes of the four largest cities. There were also swings to Labor against the trend in wealthy city seats, attributed in 2004 to the non-economic issues of the Iraq war and asylum seekers, and touted at the time as the “doctors’ wives” effect.

So far as this blog is concerned though, other engagements have prevented me giving the post-election aftermath the full attention it deserves. I will endeavour to rectify that later today, so stay tuned. In the meantime, here is a thread for discussion of the situation. Note also the post below this one, dedicated to updates and discussion on progress in the late count.

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.

1,403 comments on “The second morning after”

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  1. The thing I find most disturbing is how well Frasier Anning’s party has gone, not so much in percentage terms but in raw numbers across a number of seats he has polled over 1000 to 2000 primary votes. I can understand why people might support Pauline or maybe Palmer but what could they possibly see in Anning besides hate mongering. The other thing for all the talk of the ALP’s performance in Queensland however what happened in WA has largely escaped attention.

  2. Brought over from the previous thread.

    Politically, putting too high an emphasise on climate change is not going to win too many medium and short term battles.

    The impacts of global action aren’t going to be seen for decades and will show up in the data long before people start noticing anything themselves.

    Yes, it’s a super important issue that must be dealt with, but whatever we do it’s not going to start getting colder.

    The carbon price helped to reduce emissions, but it kept getting hotter. This is completely as you’d expect.

    As a result you can implement the required policy and point out what’s being achieved, but that will be meaningless to most people because what they will see happening outside will be hotter temperatures.

    Basically what I’m saying is, you’ll need other policies to use as your success indicators because climate change policy won’t be it.

  3. Labor lost which is what makes me angry. They were up to 10 points ahead for years, and still lost to a rightwing freakshow.
    Labor get paid to think shit up and not to lose. That is their day job.
    Where are they drawing their focus groups from? The Marrickville to Bondi Bermuda triangle? Fitzroy hipsters? Cultural studies faculties? Certainly looks like it.
    Labor strategists screwed it up. They just needed to win. They just needed to say whatever shit they needed to win. Then they could do whatever. Ban fundamentalist xtians for hate speech. Put scomo, Pauline and Barnaby behind bars for tax evasion. Ban private schools and private health care. Give everyone a free electric car. Whatever. Win first.
    Lesson learned: win first. Don’t drink your own Kool aid.

  4. Labour have only governed for 38 of 118 years apparently

    but in that time the progressive achievements are mind blowing compared to say the usa where the center left has probably governed at least half the time

    its terribly depressing if you are a labour politician getting so little credit for doing so much but things aren’t terribly bleak for a labour activist

    every labour period has led to multiple reforms that are here to stay and now the disability program is here to stay.

    So I say Labour should push to be ambitious in policy. They will win occasionally but their wins, though occasional, will change the country permanently for the better

  5. This is the only post I am going to make on this subject.

    BUT, the FDoTM cartoon above epitomises at lease one of the factors that Labor were up against. Apparently, onlyLabor were to blame for the loss. I also discovered this attitude from people who I follow on twitter. The same ones, such as FDotM and Jon Kudelka (but they were by no means the only ones), who in February, because of Medivac, said loudly “Labor does not deserve your vote.”

    I demurred, saying , but please Labor needs your second preference. The answer was NO! Labor does not deserve your preferences. At that stage I disengaged from the debate.

    Any self-reflection from these people? No, they are pissed off because the L/NP won, but only Labor are to blame, no one else.

    What did they think was going to happen when they told people not to give Labor their preferences, and when they kept saying same-same? It was just another negative voice in the mix saying “Don’t vote Labor”.

  6. Previously prolific poster now long-term lurker. I wanted to thank all at PB for the sensible discussion in the election aftermath. It has helped me keep my sanity!

    Before too much bedwetting and throwing baby out with the bath water, important to remember that the Andrews ALP govt in Victoria have demonstrated that you can have vision, be progressive, manage a hostile media and win a landslide it can be done.

    And 2019 a lot like 1993 and the govt was turfed in a landslide the next election.

    As to this election?
    1. Shorten was always a drag on ALP vote, undeniable.

    2. MSM won it for Scott: adopting ScoMo makeover (I hate that name), enabling his stunts and wild lies over ALP policy, failure to critique his lack of team and lack of policy and failure to report scandals such as Watergate2019 were the worst I’ve seen, even worse than Howard or Abbott.

    3. And the ALP campaign. How many election losses before they re-enter the field on economic management. LNP 6 straight deficits, doubled the debt, per capita recession, wage stagnation and ALP said virtually nothing about this. Where were these ads? LNP have mismanaged the economy and still won the economic argument.

  7. @ Blobbit:

    I kinda agree with that. Not sure though that the costing 90k jobs will work. There simply hasn’t been enough visible evidence of our happening yet.

    By that I don’t mean it hasn’t happened and can’t be seen. Just that all that had not yet lead to job losses. That argument isn’t going to work until some of those 90k start losing the jobs.

    Unlike mines closing, which people have seen the cost of.

    I reckon in retrospect they should have gone the me-too line and worn the cost.

    And that’s fine, too – a low risk/low return strategy can be a viable one, under the right circumstances. And at least it’s picking a side, not waffling and equivocating. It’s a lot easier to motivate people to vote for something definite!


    @ Briefly:

    Labor’s PV…dismal. Just utterly dismal.

    Are you surprised? Even before the election, several polls showed a Labor PV that was well into danger territory. It’s a sharp contrast to 2016 – where Bill got a modest swing toward Labor against the CPG’s wunderkind Turnbull, and why? Because Labor ran on a definite, progressive policy platform, and did so with a coherent, comprehensive message. So people could point to Labor and say, “They believe in something – even if I disagree with it!”

    Compare & contrast with the past 6 months. Every time the Coalition tried to wedge Labor on this or that issue – increased “counter-terrorism” powers, medivac, welfare, etc. etc. etc. – Labor effectively sought to position itself on both sides of the wedge, often in blatantly self-destructive ways.

    Labor deplored the haste of the CT power-grab and the poorly-written bill – but voted for it at the last moment anyway, after brilliantly setting it up to fail in the Senate. Bang, issue gone and egg all over Labor’s face.

    Labor agreed “in principle” with medivac – but amended it to give the dickhead from Dickson the power to arbitrarily deny transfers, negating the entire damned point. Bang, they could now be attacked as “soft on borders”, but gained no brownie points for the barely-there change that occurred.

    Labor agreed “in principle” that welfare rates were too low, but refused to commit to even making haste to rectify the issue, far less to specific figures. Bang – the Coalition could scaremonger about “taking away your hard-earned to support bludgers”, but the Left cynically shrugged, seeing way too many maybes and caveats and delays.

    Labor opposed Adani – but wouldn’t block it if elected, and Qld Labor supported Adani in any case. Bang – miners and pro-mining voters stampeded to the Coalition against Labor’s “job-killing” opposition, while environmentalists saw the loopholes and shrugged.

    The list goes on. How do you persuade people to vote for a party that fine-points every single policy area to the n’th degree?

    The Fibs’ policy playbook is simple. It’s mendacious as fuck, and cruel, and gratuitously nasty, and has so many paeans to greed that it reads like a holy text of Mammon. But it’s simple. Pick an issue, and you can usually tell where the Fibs stand on it, and their ostensible reasons for standing there. And those reasons all tee up with one another, as repugnant as they are to anyone with a gram of humanity in them.

    That is a massive advantage in a world dominated by five-second attention spans, by punters whose thoughts are dominated by “What’s in it for meeeee?”, by superficial and sensationalist media outlets. And it’s a pattern that’s repeated elsewhere – Corbyn’s Labour Party may be stinky to some people, but in 2017, Corbyn started the General Election fourty points behind the Tories and with the established hostility of all of Fleet Street, and ended it with a hung Parliament and Labour’s highest vote in 20 years. Why? Because people knew what he wanted to do. And while Labour’s spent the past ~12mo waffling and bickering with one another about “how-to” Brexit, their numbers have steadily slipped back downward.

    In Australia, I hope the lesson will stick this time – because if it’s not too late in 2022 for us to do our bit to save Earth for our kids, that’ll be our last chance!

  8. meher baba says:
    Sunday, May 19, 2019 at 11:45 pm

    Reflecting a bit on the “retiree tax” issue, it strikes me that the brains trust behind Labor’s campaign seems to have had a very limited understanding of the constituencies affected by its proposed policies, or of the ways in which those policies would affect them.

    Of course the most glaring instance of this was when Shorten demonstrated that he had either forgotten or had never been properly briefed about Labor’s policies to escalate the changes to superannuation introduced by Turnbull in 2017: that is, lowering the point at which the 30 per cent tax rate on super cuts in from $250k to $200k pa (remembering that the $200k includes the value of employer contributions, so that the policy could affect people earning $180k pa or less) and the reduction on after-tax contributions from $100k pa to $75 pa.

    There is a sizeable constituency that were adversely-affected by Turnbull’s changes and would have copped a further hit from Labor’s policies. These include people like: tradies and other skilled professionals who might earn $200k or more in some years (including many mine workers in Queensland and elsewhere) and public servants, school principals, academics and other white collar workers who might also be earning $200k pa, typically in the latter years of their working lives. These people might not be expecting to earn these high incomes for very long, and are therefore keen to save a substantial part of their earnings to fund their retirement.

    I wonder how many within the media are also in this demographic.

    D&M: Yep. The mind-boggling doublethink of “vote Greens and then punish Labor for their pragmatism by not preferencing them” stance helps no-one.

  9. Douglas and Milko
    Monday, May 20th, 2019 – 4:37 am
    Comment #6

    Seems as though First Dog can be as delusional as the next person.

    For the masochists among us -this 👇

    Sorry about the fuzzy image and even sorrier material.

    Morrison must strike while the iron’s hotDENNIS SHANAHA

    Scott Morrison has more authority than any modern Liberal leader and must wield it immediately, judiciously and inclusively to ensure the “miracle victory” doesn’t soak into the sands of Coalition division.

    The re-elected Prime Minister’s authority — arguably greater than that of John Howard after 1996 because Paul Keating was expected to lose — can be exercised in a political atmosphere reminiscent of the “upset” victories of Donald Trump and Brexit.

    Fuggit – I knew I should have asked my kindly GP for Valium or perhaps something a little more relaxing. Creaming Soda is fine but the risk of Red Drink Madness which accompanies overdoses is just too high.

    A couple more Front Pages then back to my reading program. Only 399 books to go until the next election.

    I had my favourite daughter, her husband and her youngest son to visit last night.
    Son-in-law – who has never encountered a conspiracy/ratbag theme he didn’t like – started to tell me about a country (unspecified) which first added fluoride to water and then removed such. Yellow Card for you, says I. So, flat earth, no moon landings, 911 gummint conspiracy, Port Arthur ——–Oh me, oh my, oh ❗

    Boil the kettle please Muriel. ☕

  10. I repeat, the voters do not get off with a ‘Get Out Of Gaol Free’ card. Australia voted the Coalition back into government which means most Australians are bastards.

  11. Lipid, totally agree. I am also sick to death of the Adani mine poisoning election campaigns. Frankly will the Qld and Federal govts either approve or reject it pronto. The result on Saturday really proved that governments lose office operations don’t win so ALP providing policy detail etc was them trying to win. All change elections should be focused firstly on government failures.

  12. Re Labor re-entering the field on economic management: Concur.

    Labor’s actual economic record, as opposed to the caricature the Coalition & CPG confect to beat the stuffing out of, is enviable.

    It was Labor who got Australia out of the 1970s economy, and set us up for the longest boom-period in Australian history.

    It was Labor who had to deal with the worst economic downturn since the Great Depression, and thanks at least partly to their policies, Australia was the only significant Western nation to avoid recession.

    Meanwhile, it was the Liberals who sold $220bn worth of public assets, paid $96bn of debts, and crowed about “paying off the debt” – any fool can sell $220 worth of stuff to pay a $96 debt!

    It was the Liberals who took the once-a-generation windfall from mining taxes, and used it to “pay for” recurrent vote-buying largesse.

    It was the Liberals who, in just 5 years, ran up $300 billion in debt, during an economic upswing – which is when governments ought to be saving money, not spending it.

    It was the Liberals who – despite running nothing but deficits since taking office – rammed round after round of tax cuts for the rich, and for the corporations, through Parliament. Ensuring that we’ll face more and larger deficits than we would have. And for what? So a handful of ultra-ultra-ultra-rich tycoons and foreign shareholders can have a bigger pile of money to lay down on!

    And it was the Liberals who have engaged in breathtaking rorts, sleaze and corruption up one side and down the other. $444,000,000 to the tiny, 12-person Great Barrier Reef Foundation – unsolicited, untendered, unbid. And the Foundation just happens to be staffed with former Queensland LNP staffers, and just happens to have coal barons on its board! $80,000,000 in extravagant buy-backs of water from the Murray-Darling Basin, from the high-bidders…who just happen to have extensive ties to National Party MPs. $2,100,000,000 in a high-value “contract” to HelloWorld for Federal travel services, awarded in 2014 – and Joe Hockey apparently owed their CEO favours at the time! Can anyone imagine Labor getting away with a tenth of this crap?!

    If Labor ever wants to win the “What’s in it for me?” vote, they – we – have got to reverse the narrative here!

  13. My horoscope which I have had to track down for myself because BK steadfastly refuses to incorporate such essentials into his Dawn Patrol leaves me even more confused than ever.

    Apparently the Full Moon has unleashed the Full Me ❗

    Good morning all. ☕Medication 💊 No Valium or similar.

  14. Morning all. Still digesting the weekends depressing result. Labor needs to analyse its policy and its campaign. I think the latter was worse than the former. Not Shorten’s performance, but the messaging, ads etc. Third party stunts like Bob Browns convoy did not help. Third party on the ground campaigning like Getup in Warringah did help. The policy was noble but clearly too complex to be understood. KISS. Keep it simple because voters are stupid and the Liberals lie.

    In the mean time Labor is in opposition and so it should oppose. Every undeliverable coalition promise, from implausible lower energy prices to lower emissions and undeliverable fast trains to Geelong should be reminded to voters and questioned. And keep mentioning flat wages. Have a good day all.

  15. Some nice analysis this morning bludgers.

    General thoughts:

    Barney in Saigon, that has such a depressing ring of truth to it. Until either: the troglodytes that make up 90% + of the parliamentary coalition are gone, OR the remaining alleged moderates grow some balls and hold the rest to ransom (a la Barnyard, the member for Manila, et al) Australia’s going to be a policy free zone on climate. Who’s left that could wear the moderate tag? Zimmerman has made some mention of climate. Evans? Chester?

    Kay jay: Agree on FDOTM. These people own a portion of the blame too. Not least the Greens. Received an email from di Natale with the subject line “the fight goes on”. Among other pearls of wisdom: it’s been a successful campaign for the greens. I replied- will be interesting to see if I get a response. This is not to absolve the many other players in this election defeat, but I feel the greens have some serious learning to do.

    Other than that- where to from here? I’m joining the ALP; will continue to do what I can on my small scale to reduce my environmental footprint; will continue to teach students the importance of questioning. And need to be noisy about holding the bastards to account.

  16. Does someone have a list of the ‘waved through’ legislation that Labor would fix after they won the election ? 🙁

  17. Matt: “If Labor ever wants to win the “What’s in it for me?” vote, they – we – have got to reverse the narrative here!”

    One way might be to try going into the next election campaign with something other than a massive tax and spend program. Just a thought

  18. While we are on the subject of things Labor were intending to wait to fix next time they were in government…

    It is now 100% clear that, without Turnbull’s postal survey, SSM would not have been made legal until at least 2022.

    One day the gay community and the broader left will wake up to the fact that the postal survey – which, bizarrely, was originally Dutton’s idea – was a brilliant way of getting the matter resolved without the risk of dividing our community. Once the overwhelming support for SSM among the community became clear, the bill passed through both houses in a jiffy, creating the occasion for a joyous celebration.

    Those who opposed the postal survey were expecting a Labor Government elected in 2019 to push a bill through both houses, with Labor MPs opposed to SSM being refused a conscience vote, possibly leading to a number of resignations from the party. Meanwhile, the right side of politics would have been having a field day with how undemocratic the whole process was, demanding a referendum, etc.

    And, as it turned out, Labor didn’t even win government in 2019, so many people would have got old or even have died waiting for their chance to get married.

    Maybe one day Turnbull will be given some grudging, but deserved respect for what he achieved on SSM.

  19. One more post from me for the morning. According to overnight media reports, Plibersek and Albo are locked in to contest the leadership, and Bowen is doing a bit of Prince Hamlet routine about the whole thing, but I reckon he will run in the end because the NSW right will need someone to vote for.

    Chalmers sounds like he is planning to run for deputy.

    It seems crystal clear to me that, from this field, Albo is the only choice. Yesterday, both Plib and Bowen argued forcefully that there was nothing wrong with Labor’s tax policies, and it was simply a case that the party didn’t sell them particularly well: Pllibersek bizarrely argued that “they hadn’t had enough time to sell them” (you mean 3 years wasn’t enough? The campaign for the Federation referendum only lasted about two years!)

    Anyway, Plib and Bowen have both effectively endorsed Albo. The three main spruikers of Labor’s tax package were Shorten, Bowen and Plib. Albo never had anything to do with selling it. As Bowen and Plib failed in their selling job, surely the answer is to give Albo a go.

    Albo has, of course, made it pretty clear that, if he is elected leader, he will be scrapping or modifying the tax policies as quickly as he can. That’s because he is a sensible man.

    Go Albo.

  20. Looking around various places I see people putting forth their explanation of “wot done it”. Quite a number of theories but will we get to know what the ‘wot’ actually was ? Both main parties will do a lot of chicken entrails research but should they find/know what was crucial they would not want to let t’otherside know what it was or even that they have the answer. Which leaves ? that could/would be a reliable source as to the ‘wot’? The polling companies ? 😆 😆 😆

  21. Scott Morrison will urgently recall Parliament to secure the passage of promised $1080 tax cuts from July 1 after the Liberals’ “miracle” victory.

    The windfall for all those earning under $130,000 should be delivered when workers file their tax return – but only if the Liberal Party can secure the support of the Senate before the end of June.

    The Tax Office has already warned the legislation must be passed before it will provide the tax refunds that double the existing low- and middle-income tax offset.

    Can Parliament be recalled before all the seats are settled? Innocent question.

  22. Good morning Dawn Patrollers.

    Saturday night was a raw, hard moment, writes Bill Shorten.
    They are pretty happy over at The Australian!
    The PM intends to put the tax cut forward as a “priority” amid concerns on Sunday that the Coalition lost ground in key seats after earlier appearing on track to govern in its own right.
    “Should Labor jump to new generation leader – and Morrison steal some Shorten policies?”, asks Michelle Grattan.
    Max Kozlowski tells us about Professor Bela Stantic who analysed 2 million social media comments, from more than half a million unique accounts, relating to 50 key terms, and predicted that Scott Morrison would win.
    Jacqui Maley says that Tony Abbott’s treatment of his seat as a “personal fiefdom” has angered colleagues who say the former Liberal leader could be to blame if the Coalition is forced into minority government because he refused to retire for a fresh candidate.
    Sean Kelly writes that a lesson coming out of this election is that change is hard to bring about n this country.
    Phil Coorey says it’s ScoMo’s show now and all he needs is an agenda.
    The SMH editorial urges Morrison to use this third Coalition term to unite the country.
    And Peter Hartcher says that Morrison has given himself a rare opportunity to craft an agenda for a new government and a vision for a continent. But how it handles a possible economic crisis will define it, he writes.
    Similarly Ross Gittins says Morrison’s miracle election may turn out to be the easy bit.
    Peter Martin chimes in on this subject saying, “Albo, or Plibersek, or whoever it turns out to be the next Labor leader, might have had a lucky accident. Usually, it’s Labor that inherits an economy turning down. This time, it’s the Coalition. And because of regular updates from the Reserve Bank and the Bureau of Statistics strikingly at odds with their public position that the economy strong, they ought to be finely attuned to it.”
    Before the election, Scott Morrison told the nation we needed a party with a growth policy. Now that the election is over, we’ll hopefully find out what that growth policy is, writes Michael Pascoe.
    Sam Maiden tells us how Labor went from dreaming of victory to staring at misery in the 2019 election.
    Katharine Murphy tells us that Albo is making a concerted play for the Labor leadership, declaring the party’s policy direction needs to change but signalling he would promote progressive values, as the count continues after Saturday night’s election.
    And now for the big Labor post mortem!
    But environmentalists reject suggestions tactics such as the Stop Adani convoy cost Labor the election. They need to have a good look at themselves!
    Michael Koziol explains how the Coalition pulled off a miracle as Labor’s momentum fell apart – and why no one noticed.
    A nice backhander from Shane Wright who says pollsters are 95 per cent unsure how they got it wrong.
    Scott Morrison will urgently recall Parliament to secure the passage of promised $1080 tax cuts from July 1 after the Liberals’ “miracle” victory, writes Sam Maiden.
    Political science lecturer Marija Taflaga writes, “Morrison has led the Coalition to a ‘miracle’ win, but how do they govern from here?”
    Eryk Bagshaw opines that it was two words that lost Labor the election – “Retiree Tax”.
    David Wroe explains how Queensland demonstrates the north south divide in Australian politics. The 23-6 seat advantage the Liberal National Party enjoys over Labor verges on the ridiculous, he says.
    Judith Ireland looks at the Labor Party and how it will chose a new leader.
    Matt Wade thinks complex political cross-currents have made it difficult for either major party to carve out a decisive lead and long-held electoral norms are shifting.
    Amanda Vanstone hopes this is the start of a new era in Australian politics.
    Ben Raue writes that One Nation preferences may have flowed to Coalition but there is scant evidence United Australia had an effect.
    David Crowe says that no opposition will risk its fate the way Labor di this time around.
    Cole Latimer writes that the Coalition win in the weekend’s election has raised industry concerns that the Scott Morrison government will return to its ‘big stick’ legislative agenda to rein in power prices.
    In this op-ed Trent Zimmermann says that the Coalition still has lessons to learn.
    On the other side Alexandra Smuth writes that NSW Labor needs to be completely rebuilt. It must work out what it wants to be. Is it a party for inner city progressives or working families in western Sydney?
    Sportsbet will lose at least $5.2 million thanks to its decision to pay out early on Bill Shorten winning Saturday’s federal election as large bookmakers again had to admit they had misread the political landscape. Did they ever!
    Where to now for Labor asks Jennifer Hewett.
    Katharine Murphy writes that Labor lost the unlosable election – now it’s up to Morrison to tell Australia his plan.
    It looks like Jacqui Lambie will have the last laugh on Palmer.
    Fergus Hunter reports that Zali Steggall is optimistic about climate collaboration with the Abbott ‘handbrake’ gone.
    Jacob Saulwick examines the significant delay in reform reaction to the NSW report on building cladding dangers.
    And the NSW Upper House is set to force the Berejiklian government to provide more details about how it spends taxpayers’ money, as the state’s tourism and events agency lost another bid to keep secret its expenditure on events like Vivid.
    Oil and gas companies claiming to support climate change reform initiatives are simultaneously spending billions to stop tougher laws. And it appears to be working.
    Nigel Gladstone writes about the still patchy roll out of the NBN. The Coalition is going to have to own this debacle now.
    Sensibly, Peta Credlin has called for end to ‘damaging’ fortnightly Newspolls.
    Now Tony Abbott is being touted as our Washington envoy. You’ve gotta be joking!
    Relieved corporate leaders have urged the new government to work with business to simplify the industrial system, reduce the regulatory squeeze on banks, develop a rational energy policy and lift productivity and wages.
    Labor’s ambitions to ramp up electric vehicles may be in tatters, writes Cara Waters, but some small Australian business are amongst world leaders in the sector. Brisbane-based Tritium manufactures the fastest electrical vehicle charging stations in the world with 95 per cent of its production exported.
    The UK Guardian says Jeremy Corbyn should be praying for a Boris Johnson victory.
    Today marks one of the biggest shake-ups in the history of measurement. But the new standards on how we define units of mass, length, time and so on are not easy to explain.
    And for today’s nomination for “Arsehole of the Week” we have . . .

    Cartoon Corner

    David Rowe channels Eurovision.

    Pat Campbell on Morrison’s return.

    From an amazingly prolific Matt Golding.

    Mark David with a job for Tony.

    A couple from Swan Leahy.

    Cathy Wilcox wraps it up.

    John Shakespeare gets it right.

    As does Jim Pavlidis.

    Alan Moir farewells Bob Hawke.

    Johannes Leak rubs it in.

    From the US

  23. Couple of days on, and I’m just checking in and saying hi to all those amazing, progressive qlders and the millions of altruistic, left-leaning boomers.

    How are all six of you this morning?

  24. Pascoe

    With Labor’s help, the Coalition got away with telling the electorate it was a successful economic manager, when all but one key indicator is turning down, when the Reserve Bank is about to cut interest rates because of the deteriorating outlook, and when credible private sector analysts are predicting unemployment will continue to rise from here.

    The Coalition is riding two bits of good news that aren’t going to last.

    The first is continuing good jobs growth – but that’s not sustainable if the RBA and private forecasters are right.

    The second is the inability of Brazil’s giant iron ore miner, Vale, to build a safe dam. That has closed a significant proportion of Vale’s production, pushing up iron ore prices and giving the Australian government windfall, higher tax collections. It could take a year for Vale to get back to full steam, but it will and present prices won’t last.


    Labor lost the election, the Coalition didn’t win it, and yes Hawke’s death was a significant factor.
    Just over a quarter of our respondents changed or locked in their vote after Bob Hawke’s death. A further ~10% changed their vote in the last week, but before Hawke’s death.

    The perception that Hawke’s death would result in a Labor landslide caused many to not vote Labor: they either felt ‘released’ to vote for the minor party of their choice (especially to vote Green), or wanted to ensure they didn’t have too much control – i.e. they were voting against the expected landslide, not for the Coalition.

    The expectation of a Labor landslide absolutely crashed the Independent vote (combination of no benefit of being on the cross bench, people sympathetically voting with Labor, and others voting against the landslide), and moved a lot of preferences.

    While Labor loyal voters were reinforced to vote Labor by the Hawke reflections and memories, many were not. In particular, the comparison of the greatness of Hawke to Shorten was not favourable to Shorten. Others commented on remembering 17% interest rates and the ‘Recession we had to have’ as the cost of the Hawke/Keating reforms, and didn’t want a repeat of that pain.

    Franking credits remains the largest single vote changing issue.

    Rape allegations against Bill Shorten – which have always been loitering in a very small number of respondents’ concerns – seem to have had a dramatic spike amongst minor party right wing voters, causing a change in preferences. I’ll need to dig a lot deeper, and track back through the Facebook groups, to find out the full chain of events, but it appears to be generated from a story on Michael Smith News and The Pickering Post, replicated on a number of equally dodgy looking sites, that new evidence had been given to the Victorian Police by Kathy Sheriff, seeking the re-opening of her complaint against Shorten lodged in 2014. 2GB is the only credible news source I have found so far reporting the story – the sharing and commentary in Facebook groups is largely based on less than credible sources that did not include the caution that Ben Fordham put at the top of his interview that Victorian Police had cleared Shorten of these allegations.

  26. Very perceptive take from Steven Hail:

    The notion that the ALP lost because it is too left-wing is the most laughable piece of horse manure I have heard from anyone in ages.

    They barely mentioned inequality, record household debt, or collapsing household savings rates, and wouldn’t even absolutely promise to raise Newstart.

    There was no mention of high underutilisation, insecure employment or youth underemployment.

    It lost for various reasons, including Adani and franking credits.

    The fight over franking credits was unnecessary in the first place and badly prosecuted. There was no need to use up all that oxygen over increases in taxation.

    I made some calls into Boothby myself, and I’m confident the ALP would have won Boothby, if they had avoided the franking credits issue. Not that the policy was a bad one, necessarily, but it was a fight which was not needed.

    As for Adani, the ALP can not be any more minimalist on climate change than it already is. This is an issue on which you simply cannot surrender. What needs to be offered is a bright future, a just transition, or a Green New Deal. Call it what you will. The notion that coal has a long term future as a principal energy source is suicidal.

    The biggest issue was the personality of the leader. Bill Shorten, I am sure, is a decent and capable man. I don’t have the right personality to be leader of the opposition. Neither does Bill. He has no charisma. In terms of charisma, Scott Morrison>Bill Shorten, every time.

    So don’t choose Albo and don’t choose Mr Bowen. Choose Tanya Plibersek.

    Have a leader with the right personality, and preferably a woman. Avoid unnecessary fights over tax changes nobody understands. Provide a coherent and positive image of the future, under a heading like ‘The Green New Deal’. Make the most of the likely poor economic performance over the next three years, and an increasing panic about climate change.

    But don’t turn the Australian Labor Party into the Australian Democrats.

    That would be a terrible mistake.

    I continue to believe that a recession between elections, which is likely, and a consistent exposition of policies informed by a MMT frame would be a winner.

    Oh, and choose a leader who is likely to have some charisma, and preferably one who is a woman.

  27. In 2016 Labor did well with what was labeled a “scare campaign” although it wasn’t really one.

    In 2019 the Coalition and their ally Palmer ran with a whole series of scares, most of which had little substance.

    The common lesson is that people will vote for you if you can get them scared of what the other side will do to them.

    Labor needs to bear this in mind.

    Another fact which does not appear to have been remarked on is that unemployment has actually been fairly low. Despite all the arguments about downside risk in that statistic and the reality of wage stagnation, change can be seen as a threat. This is especially relevant in the failure of Labor to improve its position in Sydney and Melbourne.

    Finally, the balance in the new parliament will not be very different to the old one and most of the faultlines on the government side are still there, reinforced by the growing presence of the “independent conservative” grouping.

  28. For what its worth, a view from western Sydney, where Lindsay was lost, from my peer group of middle-aged lower middle class and comfortable working class whites:
    -Shorten was a liability, not liked or trusted
    -suspicion over Labor’s taxation plans
    -little interest in climate change and environmental issues. I don’t think border security issues were an issue either
    -I think Labor’s support for electric cars was an important negative factor out here too
    People here don’t trust the Liberals either, they understand they run Australia for the benefit of the wealthy, and banks, property developers, etc are also mistrusted. But Labor still couldn’t get enough of their votes. As for the Greens, this demographic hates them with a passion, they are seen as trendy hipsters who live on a different planet.
    Where to from here? Somehow Labor needs to better connect with its traditional working class base, while not alienating its educated middle-class city voters. And it needs to do that with messaging which is relevant to the daily lives and economic concerns of these people in the suburbs. They may have done better to hammer the Liberals over low wages, and run dead on climate change. Cheers

  29. meher baba @ #23 Monday, May 20th, 2019 – 6:40 am

    One more post from me for the morning. According to overnight media reports, Plibersek and Albo are locked in to contest the leadership, and Bowen is doing a bit of Prince Hamlet routine about the whole thing, but I reckon he will run in the end because the NSW right will need someone to vote for.

    Chalmers sounds like he is planning to run for deputy.

    It seems crystal clear to me that, from this field, Albo is the only choice. Yesterday, both Plib and Bowen argued forcefully that there was nothing wrong with Labor’s tax policies, and it was simply a case that the party didn’t sell them particularly well: Pllibersek bizarrely argued that “they hadn’t had enough time to sell them” (you mean 3 years wasn’t enough? The campaign for the Federation referendum only lasted about two years!)

    Anyway, Plib and Bowen have both effectively endorsed Albo. The three main spruikers of Labor’s tax package were Shorten, Bowen and Plib. Albo never had anything to do with selling it. As Bowen and Plib failed in their selling job, surely the answer is to give Albo a go.

    Albo has, of course, made it pretty clear that, if he is elected leader, he will be scrapping or modifying the tax policies as quickly as he can. That’s because he is a sensible man.

    Go Albo.

    Never forget that Albo is the factional player from central casting.

  30. I reckon he will run in the end because the NSW right will need someone to vote for.

    The NSW Right was one of the architects of Rudd’s removal, and OK with Gillard, so it’s possible they might end up supporting Plib, as long as she made the appropriate promises to them, regarding the shadow cabinet.

    I’m starting to get the depressing feeling that we might see a repeat of the previous leadership battle, with Albo again being supported by the membership, but Plib winning with the support of the caucus.

    Then, leader Plib & deputy leader Bowen spend the next 3 years trying to ‘sell’ the tax package. And then, ScoMo runs another scare campaign & wins again.

  31. Thanks BK. Despite the whingeing and whining from some about your daily wrap, I do appreciate your efforts.

    Now that Abbott’s gone, will a Rowe cartoon ever be the same without him appearing somewhere in it?

  32. That take by Steven Hall is fucking woeful. If you wiped your arse with it, it would actually make you less clean.

    No mention of under employment? Except every fucking day of the campaign.

    No mention of lack of housing affordability? Except for the negative gearing policy they had put there for three years.

    Choose Tania as leader? Sorry, lovely lady but basically a female Shorten. Tania always seems to take the not altogether helpful approach of using 100 words to say something you could distill to half a dozen, and sounds like a robot when she’s speaking. Knows her stuff but not an effective seller of ideas imo.

  33. Labor had Murdock, Clive Palmer, the Greens, the conservative churches, the real estate agents and the investment advisers against them, that is what done it. It was too much, Labor lost.

    Labor took on the tax concessions given to capital and lost. The election was lost in Queensland; the Greens had their little envoy into coal mining territory to make sure. A Christmas card from Scott Morrison will be their reward. Well done guys.

    The environment had the most to lose. There is now a risk there will be a government subsidy for the new railway line. Galilee basin is now likely to be opened up for Coal mining. Considering the risks this will be a disaster. Big cost for a 2% increase in the Greens vote; which will translate into no new senators or seats.

  34. D: “How do you stop people casting multiple votes across booths?”

    The answer is that you don’t. The policy has long been that the numbers of people doing this are so low as to be not worth all the cost and effort required to chase them. Instances of multiple voting on election day are investigated after the fact, and are typically found to be either the actions of people who are insane or intoxicated (or both), or a case of someone playing a prank on someone they know.

    In cases where the numbers of multiple votes were higher than the margin of victory to one side or the other, I guess it would be open to a losing candidate to go to court and demand a rerun of the election in that seat. I am not aware of anyone having ever done this, but I guess it might happen one of these days.

    Of course, there’s no way of knowing how the multiple voters actually voted, or even if their votes were formal.

  35. Parra Mod,

    Greenies *are* hipsters who live on another planet.

    It’s just a different other planet to the ones Qlders live on.

  36. Burgey: “Choose Tania as leader? Sorry, lovely lady but basically a female Shorten. Tania always seems to take the not altogether helpful approach of using 100 words to say something you could distill to half a dozen, and sounds like a robot when she’s speaking. Knows her stuff but not an effective seller of ideas imo.”

    Yep, all true, sadly. And she’s pretty hot to trot on the identity politics stuff, which I doubt is ever going to be much of a vote winner in the outer suburbs.

  37. Hunch:

    My chances of being re-elected, as the Justice Party senator for Victoria, are slim. It seems that Bill wasn’t the only one to get the Shorten end of the stick.

  38. ajm

    It matters not that Albo is a factional player, he isn’t seen as one – he’s seen and regarded by most people as “a good bloke” and is relatable. That counts for a fair bit.

  39. Jeez a choice between Albanese, Plibersek and Bowen is no choice at all. They’re all woeful leadership options for a party that is now facing its third term in opposition. 🙁

  40. frednk: “Labor had Murdock, Clive Palmer, the Greens, the conservative churches, the real estate agents and the investment advisers against them, that is what done it. It was too much, Labor lost.”

    Yep, that’s the best way for Labor to think about it: it’s all the fault of someone else. Don’t blame the dud tax package, the dud leader, the confused messaging on Adani, the very confused messaging on border protection, the dreadful advertising, the complete lack of effort in sandbagging the seats Labor held in northern Tasmania and outer Brisbane, etc. That way you’ll never be required to look at the way you go about doing things. You can just go back to focusing on doing deals to conquer your factional enemies and make sure nothing ever gets any better.

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