Call of the board: South-East Queensland

How good was Queensland? The Poll Bludger reports – you decide.

The Poll Bludger’s popular Call of the Board series, in which results for each individual electorate at the May 18 federal election are being broken down region by region, underwent a bit of a hiatus over the past month or so after a laptop theft deprived me of my collection of geospatial files. However, it now returns in fine style by reviewing the business end of the state which, once again, proved to be the crucible of the entire election. Earlier instalments covered Sydney, here and here; regional New South Wales; Melbourne; and regional Victoria.

First up, the colour-coded maps below show the pattern of the two-party swing by allocating to each polling booth a geographic catchment area through a method that was described here (click for enlarged images). The first focuses on metropolitan Brisbane, while the second zooms out to further include the seats of the Gold Coast and Sunshine Coast. As was the case in Sydney and Melbourne, these maps show a clear pattern in which Labor had its best results (in swing terms) in wealthy inner urban areas (for which I will henceforth use the shorthand of the “inner urban effect”, occasionally contrasted with an “outer urban effect” that went the other way). However, they are also bluer overall, reflecting Labor’s generally poor show across Queensland (albeit not as poor in the south-east as in central Queensland).

The seat-by-seat analysis is guided by comparison of the actual results with those estimated by two alternative metrics, which are laid out in the table below (using the two-party measure for Labor). The first of these, which I employ here for the first time, is a two-party estimate based on Senate rather than House of Representatives results. This is achieved using party vote totals for the Senate and allocating Greens, One Nation and “others” preferences using the flows recorded for the House. These results are of particular value in identifying the extent to which results reflected the popularity or otherwise of the sitting member.

The other metric consists of estimates derived from a linear regression model, in which relationships were measured between booths results and a range of demographic and geographic variables. This allows for observation of the extent to which results differed from what might have been expected of a given electorate based on its demography. Such a model was previously employed in the previous Call of the Board posts for Sydney and Melbourne. However, it may be less robust on this occasion as its estimates consistently landed on the high side for Labor. I have dealt with this by applying an across-the-board adjustment to bring the overall average in line with the actual results. Results for the Gold Coast and Sunshine Coast seats are not shown, owing to the difficulty involved in classifying them as metropolitan or regional (and I have found the model to be of limited value in regional electorates). The coefficients underlying the model can be viewed here.

And now to review each seat in turn:

Blair (Labor 1.2%; 6.9% swing to LNP): Shayne Neumann has held Blair since taking it from the Liberals in 2007, on the back of a favourable redistribution and Labor’s Kevin Rudd-inspired sweep across Queensland. His margins had hitherto been remarkably stable by Queensland standards, but this time he suffered a 9.8% drop in the primary vote (partly due to a more crowded field than last time), and his two-party margin compares with a previous low point of 4.2% in 2010. Nonetheless, the metrics suggest he did well to hang on: he outperformed the Senate measure, and the demographic measure was Labor’s weakest out of the six Queensland seats it actually won (largely a function of the electorate’s lack of ethnic diversity).

Bonner (LNP 7.4%; 4.0% swing to LNP): Bonner was a notionally Labor seat when it was created in 2004, and it says a lot about recent political history that they have only won it since at the high water mark of 2007. Ross Vasta has held it for the LNP for all but the one term from 2007 to 2010, and his new margin of 7.4% is easily the biggest he has yet enjoyed, the previous peak being 3.7% in 2013. Labor generally did better in swing terms around Mount Gravatt in the south-west of the electorate, for no reason immediately obvious reason.

Bowman (LNP 10.2%; 3.2% swing to LNP): Andrew Laming has held Bowman for the Liberals/LNP since it was reshaped with the creation of its northern neighbour Bonner in 2004, his closest scrape being a 64-vote winning margin with the Kevin Rudd aberration in 2007. This time he picked up a fairly typical swing of 3.2%, boosting his margin to 10.2%, a shade below his career best of 10.4% in 2013.

Brisbane (LNP 4.9%; 1.1% swing to Labor): Brisbane has been held for the Liberal National Party since a redistribution added the affluent Clayfield area in the electorate’s east in 2010, making it the only seat bearing the name of a state capital to be held by the Coalition since Adelaide went to Labor in 2004. The city end participated in the national trend to Labor in inner urban areas, but swings the other way around Clayfield and Alderley in the north-west reduced the swing to 1.1%. Trevor Evans, who has held the seat since 2016, outperformed both the Senate vote and the demographic model, his liberalism perhaps being a good fit for the electorate. Andrew Bartlett added 2.9% to the Greens primary vote in recording 22.4%, which would have been the party’s best ever result in a federal seat in Queensland had it not been surpassed in Griffith. This compared with Labor’s 24.5%, with Labor leading by 25.4% to 23.7% at the second last preference count.

Dickson (LNP 4.6%; 3.0% swing to LNP): The shared dream of Labor and GetUp! of unseating Peter Dutton hit the wall of two broader trends to the Coalition, in outer urban areas generally and Queensland specifically. However, as the map shows, there was a pronounced distinction between the affluent hills areas in the electorate’s south, which swung to Labor, and the working class suburbia of Kallangur, which went strongly the other way. Dutton’s result was well in line with the Senate vote, but actually slightly below par compared with the demographic model. It may be thought significant that One Nation struggled for air in competition with Dutton, scoring a modest 5.2%.

Fadden (LNP 14.2%; 2.9% swing to LNP): The three electorates of the Gold Coast all recorded below-average swings to the LNP, and were as always comfortably retained by the party in each case. Fadden accordingly remains secure for Stuart Robert, who had held it since 2007.

Fairfax (LNP 13.4%; 2.6% swing to LNP): The northern Sunshine Coast seat of Fairfax will forever wear the ignominy of having sent Clive Palmer to parliament in 2013, but Ted O’Brien recovered the seat for the Liberal National Party when Palmer bowed out of politics all-too-temporarily in 2016, and was uneventfully re-elected this time.

Fisher (LNP 12.7%; 3.6% swing to LNP): Second term LNP member Andrew Wallace did not enjoy a noticeable sophomore surge in his Sunshine Coast seat, picking up a slightly below par swing. All told though, this was an unexceptional result.

Forde (LNP 8.6%; 8.0% swing to LNP): This seat on Brisbane’s southern fringe maintained its recent habit of disappointing Labor, comfortably returning Bert van Manen, who gained it with the 2010 backlash after one term of Labor control. Reflecting the outer urban effect, van Manen gained the biggest swing to the LNP in south-east Queensland, and was able to achieve an improvement on the primary vote despite the entry of One Nation, who polled 11.8%. His 8.6% margin easily surpasses his previous career best of 4.4% in 2013, when his opponent was Peter Beattie.

Griffith (Labor 2.9%; 1.4% swing to Labor): It’s been touch and go for Labor’s Terri Butler since she succeeded Kevin Rudd at a by-election in 2014, but this time she was a beneficiary of the inner urban effect, which helped her eke out a 1.4% swing against the statewide trend. Of particular note was a surge in support for the Greens, who were up by 6.7% to 23.7%, their strongest result ever in a Queensland federal seat. Butler’s 31.0% primary vote was well below the LNP’s 41.0%, but Greens preferences were more than sufficient to make up the difference.

Lilley (Labor 0.6%; 5.0% swing to LNP): One of the worst aspects of Labor’s thoroughly grim election night was newcomer Anika Wells’ struggle to retain Lilley upon the retirement of Wayne Swan, who himself experienced a career interruption in the seat when it was lost in the landslide of 1996. However, the metrics suggest the 5.0% swing was fuelled by the loss of Swan’s personal vote, showing barely any difference between the actual result and the Senate and demographic measures. The Labor primary vote plunged 8.1%, partly reflecting the entry of One Nation, who scored 5.3%.

Longman (LNP GAIN 3.3%; 4.1% swing to LNP): One of the two seats gained by the LNP from Labor in Queensland, together with the Townsville-based seat of Herbert (which will be covered in the next episode), Longman can be viewed two ways: in comparison with the 2016 election or the July 2018 by-election, which more than anything served as the catalyst for Malcolm Turnbull’s demise. On the former count, the 4.1% swing was broadly in line with the statewide trend, and comfortably sufficed to account for the 0.8% margin Susan Lamb was able to eke out when she unseated Wyatt Roy in 2016. On the latter, the result amounted to a reversal of 7.7% in two-party terms, with victorious LNP candidate Terry Young doing 9.0% better on the primary vote than defeated by-election candidate Trevor Ruthenberg, recording 38.6%. One Nation scored 13.2%, which compared with 9.4% in 2016 and 15.9% at the by-election. Lamb actually outperformed the Senate and especially the demographic metric, suggesting a sophomore surge may have been buried within the broader outer urban effect. Despite the electorate’s demographic divide between working class Caboolture and retiree Bribie Island, the swing was consistent throughout the electorate.

McPherson (LNP 12.2%; 0.6% swing to LNP): As noted above in relation to Fadden, the results from the three Gold Coast seats did not provide good copy. McPherson produced a negligible swing in favour of LNP incumbent Karen Andrews, with both major parties slightly down on the primary vote, mostly due to the entry of One Nation with 5.9%.

Moncrieff (LNP 15.4%; 0.8% swing to LNP): The third of the Gold Coast seats was vacated with the retirement of Steve Ciobo, but the result was little different from neighbouring McPherson. On the right, a fall in the LNP primary vote roughly matched the 6.4% accounted for by the entry of One Nation; on the left, Animal Justice’s 3.9% roughly matched the drop in the Labor vote, while the Greens held steady. The collective stasis between left and right was reflected in the minor two-party swing.

Moreton (Labor 1.9%; 2.1% swing to LNP): This seat is something of an anomaly for Queensland in that it was held by the Liberals throughout the Howard years, but has since remained with Labor. This partly reflects a 1.3% shift in the redistribution before the 2007 election, at which it was gained for Labor by the current member, Graham Perrett. The swing on this occasion was slightly at the low end of the Queensland scale, thanks to the inner urban effect at the electorate’s northern end. Relatedly, it was a particularly good result for the Greens, whose primary vote improved from 12.7% to 16.8%.

Oxley (Labor 6.4%; 2.6% swing to LNP): Only Pauline Hanson’s historic win in 1996 has prevented this seat from sharing with Rankin the distinction of being the only Queensland seat to stay with Labor through recent history. Second term member Milton Dick was not seriously endangered on this occasion, his two-party margin being clipped only slightly amid modest shifts on the primary vote as compared with the 2016 result.

Petrie (LNP 8.4%; 6.8% swing to LNP): This seat maintained a bellwether record going back to 1987 by giving Labor one of its most dispiriting results of the election, which no doubt left LNP member Luke Howarth feeling vindicated in his agitation for a leadership change after the party’s poor by-election result in neighbouring Longman. Howarth strongly outperformed both the Senate and especially the demographic metrics, after also recording a favourable swing against the trend in 2016. He also managed a 3.4% improvement on the primary vote, despite facing new competition from One Nation, who polled 7.5% – exactly equal to the primary vote swing against Labor.

Rankin (Labor 6.4%; 4.9% swing to LNP): Rankin retained its status as Labor’s safest seat in Queensland, but only just: the margin was 6.44% at the second decimal place, compared with 6.39% in Oxley. Jim Chalmers copped a 7.9% hit on the primary vote in the face of new competition from One Nation (8.6%) and the United Australia Party (3.7%), while both the LNP and the Greens were up by a little under 3%. Nonetheless, Chalmers strongly outperformed both the Senate and demographic metrics. That the latter scarcely recognises Rankin as a Labor seat reflects the electorate’s large Chinese population, which associated negatively with Labor support in metropolitan areas.

Ryan (LNP 6.0%; 3.0% swing to Labor): LNP newcomer Julian Simmonds was in no way threatened, but he suffered the biggest of the three swings against his party in Queensland, all of which were recorded in inner Brisbane. As well as the inner urban effect, this no doubt reflects ill-feeling arising from his preselection coup against Jane Prentice. It is tempting to imagine what might have happened if Prentice sought to press the issue by running as an independent.

ANNOUNCEMENT: If this painstakingly compiled post interested you enough that you have made it all the way through to the end, perhaps you might care to make a donation. These are gratefully received via the “become a supporter” button that appears just below, or the PressPatron button at the top of the page.

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.

1,593 comments on “Call of the board: South-East Queensland”

  1. Where trickle down economics gets you (as if we didn’t already know). When you take in less money you have less money to spend which is why American infrastructure is breaking down, if it hasn’t already done so.

    A new book-length study on the tax burden of the ultrarich begins with a startling finding: In 2018, for the first time in history, America’s richest billionaires paid a lower effective tax rate than the working class.

    “The Triumph of Injustice,” by economists Emmanuel Saez and Gabriel Zucman of the University of California at Berkeley, presents a first-of-its kind analysis of Americans’ effective tax rates since the 1960s. It finds that in 2018 the average effective tax rate paid by the richest 400 families in the country was 23 percent, a full percentage point lower than the 24.2 percent rate paid by the bottom half of American households.

    In 1980, by contrast, the 400 richest had an effective tax rate of 47 percent. In 1960, their tax rate was as high as 56 percent. The effective tax rate paid by the bottom 50 percent, by contrast, has changed little over time.

    https://www.washingtonpost.com/business/2019/10/08/first-time-history-us-billionaires-paid-lower-tax-rate-than-working-class-last-year/

  2. Watched that comment from KAK. She is a definitively nasty piece of work, quite possibly as she stares down the end times of her career as pointlessly vacuous talking head she is going the “controversial comment” bullshit just to raise a sagging profile and combat relevance deprivation?? This comment is particularly gormless given the various incidents around the world where murderous nutbaggers HAVE purposely driven vehicles into crowds to kill. Does she remember Charlottesville in the US not so long ago??

    KAK is a genuine idiot but i reckon she’s too far gone up her own arse to even realize how offensive and what a definitive incitement to violence her suggestion was.

  3. Andrew_Earlwood @ #1547 Wednesday, October 9th, 2019 – 8:31 pm

    Jamie Clements as Pontus Pilate. Risible:

    “The former party boss told the ICAC he delegated state election campaign fundraising activities to his then assistant secretary, Kaila Murnain, and did not “micro-manage” her during the 2015 campaign.

    “I had the faith in her to get it done,” he said. “Nobody knew that office better than Kaila. Nobody was able to master detail better than Kaila.”

    Asked by counsel assisting the ICAC, Scott Robertson, if he was “trying to deliberately distance [himself] from fundraising issues because you know that they’re of interest to this Commission”, Mr Clements replied: “No, I’m not.”

    He said he did not inquire as to the success of the Chinese Friends of Labor dinner because he had “massive, massive things on my plate”.

    Asked by Mr Robertson if it was “fair to say you and Kaila hate each other’s guts”, Mr Clements replied: “I think she hates my guts. I don’t know if I hate her.”

    He added that the pair were “not friends” and “I have a bad relationship with Kaila but I don’t hate her”.

    Mr Clements said there was no written record of him delegating fundraising activities to Ms Murnain but “laxness” in written procedures was “was something I inherited” in the job.

    Asked how he kept himself informed about fundraising activities in ethnic communities in particular, Mr Clements said that was “under Kaila’s management” and “I couldn’t micro-manage Kaila about something like this”. “

    Exactly. No one I spoke to at our FEC meeting tonight believed a word he said today.

    As someone said to me, Labor has been receiving donations for over 100 years now, I think there would be procedures in place.

    And I don’t think John Della Bosca will be pleased to read Jamie’s characterisation of how things were being run at head office before he got the job.

    I also heard that Albanese is dead serious about shaking things up there. It’s dysfunctional and he wants that to change.


  4. Player One says:
    Wednesday, October 9, 2019 at 8:28 pm

    sprocket_ @ #1532 Wednesday, October 9th, 2019 – 6:38 pm

    Rex

    RDN posted this on Facebook, saying “The Liberals worst nightmare…”

    ” rel=”nofollow”>

    Just to clarify … is that sign meant to be interpreted as the “Stop Adani” Convoy, or “Stop the Adani Convoy”

    Asking for a friend

    If the Liberals are terrified it has to be “Stop the Adani Convoy”, their junior anti Labor party is not doing it’s job. I would have used the word disappointed , but there you are.

  5. Most of the reducing of inequality needs to happen via predistribution measures. We need to curb the disparities in pre-tax incomes and wealth. Progressive taxes have their place as well but they cannot be expected to do the heavy lifting.

  6. It’s interesting to read a post from a resident Green that Ged Kearney should be celebrated and elevated in the Labor party.

    Having lived through the utter shit show that was the Batman byelection I can confidently report that Ged Kearney was ceaselessly and remorselessly trolled by Greensbros who never failed to instruct Ged how she was a sell out, a puppet, a stupid gormless woman willing to be manipulated by the faceless men of the Labor party in service of her own ambitions.

    It was disgusting. But nevertheless Ged Kearney prevailed in the byelection and received the largest swing in the federal election. In a seat every Green would tell you that they “deserve” to win.

    So to any Greensbro that tells me know that Ged should be put on a pedestal, I tell you, shove it up your arse.

  7. “35k. Mere chump change for our LNP gouges. How about 675k for a few text messages?”

    Exactly. Shopping bags and wine casks are used for small change. The main game happens elsewhere.

  8. Executive Time has kicked in.

    Donald J. TrumpVerified account@realDonaldTrump
    2m2 minutes ago
    The Whistleblower’s facts have been so incorrect about my “no pressure” conversation with the Ukrainian President, and now the conflict of interest and involvement with a Democrat Candidate, that he or she should be exposed and questioned properly. This is no Whistleblower…..

    Donald J. TrumpVerified account@realDonaldTrump
    2m2 minutes ago
    …..The Whistleblower’s lawyer is a big Democrat. The Whistleblower has ties to one of my DEMOCRAT OPPONENTS. Why does the ICIG allow this scam to continue?

  9. 3z @ #1568 Wednesday, October 9th, 2019 – 10:12 pm

    It’s interesting to read a post from a resident Green that Ged Kearney should be celebrated and elevated in the Labor party.

    Having lived through the utter shit show that was the Batman byelection I can confidently report that Ged Kearney was ceaselessly and remorselessly trolled by Greensbros who never failed to instruct Ged how she was a sell out, a puppet, a stupid gormless woman willing to be manipulated by the faceless men of the Labor party in service of her own ambitions.

    It was disgusting. But nevertheless Ged Kearney prevailed in the byelection and received the largest swing in the federal election. In a seat every Green would tell you that they “deserve” to win.

    So to any Greensbro that tells me know that Ged should be put on a pedestal, I tell you, shove it up your arse.

    I’d be pleased to know whether that comment is directed obliquely to me.

  10. This is a terrible story of elder abuse …

    https://www.abc.net.au/news/2019-10-09/woman-accused-of-defrauding-nearly-3-million-from-elderly-woman/11588176

    … but this is the bit that really has me worried …

    A 49-year-old male was charged with one count of fraud, two counts of possessing dangerous drugs and one count of possessing a utensil.

    … The jig is up! I used two utensils at supper time! I’m expecting a knock on the door any minute … No, there’s no need for that TAZER, Officer … I’ll go quietly! 🙁

  11. Steve777
    says:
    Wednesday, October 9, 2019 at 10:12 pm
    “35k. Mere chump change for our LNP gouges. How about 675k for a few text messages?”
    Exactly. Shopping bags and wine casks are used for small change. The main game happens elsewhere.
    ___________________________________
    That’s what makes it so funny. The NSW ALP can be brought undone for 100k in a shopping bag and 35k in a wine cask. It’s the sheer cheapness of it all.

  12. 3z needs to desist from the intemperate remarks. Walk mindfully. Meditate mindfully. I am not a “resident Green”. I see the Greens in general as better than the ALP in general, but what matters most to me are the values and policy goals that politicians bring to their work as legislators and opinion-shapers. Ged Kearney supports a Job Guarantee, which is an indispensable policy for attaining full employment with stable prices. Richard Di Natalie supports a UBI, which is a very bad policy proposal. Therefore I see Ged Kearney as better on economic policy that Richard Di Natalie. It would be great if she became a powerful player within the federal ALP. The current economic team in federal Labor are doing a woefully inept job.

  13. zoomster
    says:
    Wednesday, October 9, 2019 at 10:30 pm
    …and a Premier can be undone by a bottle of Grange.
    ___________________________
    I put that down to stupidity rather than cheapness. Every one in the ALP wants to be an ‘earner’ for the party. That’s the way to advance. That’s what Shorten brought to the party in spades. Too bad if it discredits the whole organisation.

  14. zoomster
    says:
    Wednesday, October 9, 2019 at 10:40 pm
    nath
    Victorian Labor is very different from NSW Labor.
    _____________________
    I volunteered for the Vic ALP at the 1999 election. A big reason I did that was that they promised they would curtail Crown Casino. After the election Packer donated to the Vic ALP and Crown was freed of certain regulations and allowed to expand its pokies presence.

  15. Looking back I think the ALP/Crown issue was a big catalyst for the rise of the Greens in Melbourne. The Greens vote was around 2% in Victoria and doubled by 2001. In 1999 the Victorian Labor party had the goodwill of all progressive voters in attempting to end Kennett. I was not the only one completely gutted by what happened after. Even though I personally liked Bracks a lot.

  16. More Tribe.

    This is far from the first time Trump has directed administration officials not to comply with a congressional request or subpoena. Ordinarily, he has relied on the pretext of a misapplied or nonexistent executive privilege or immunity as justification. Such an excuse would be wholly inadequate here, given the absence of any plausible legal argument for any such privilege, and the settled principle that impeachment proceedings put Congress in a position to claim that the public’s need for full information overcomes any arguably applicable evidentiary shield.

    Here, the obvious public value and importance of Ambassador Sondland’s testimony, especially in light of reports that he called the president between the two most pertinent text messages, plainly carries the day. But even if that weren’t the case, the Trump administration’s stonewalling becomes constitutionally indefensible where the underlying conduct — pressuring a vulnerable ally by using the president’s powers over foreign and military policy for purely personal gain — could not be more clearly impeachable.

    Given the hopelessness of those standard arguments, Trump and his attorney general, William Barr, have turned to an even more insidious justification: denying the broader legitimacy of the entire House impeachment inquiry and branding it a “kangaroo court.”

    https://www.usatoday.com/story/opinion/2019/10/09/trump-impeachment-vote-charges-now-add-more-articles-later-column/3909558002/

  17. Looking back, I think you’re wrong. The Greens were a relatively new party. That they grew is not surprising. The Labor vote also grew (hugely) in that period, which suggests Labor didn’t upset many voters.

    Bracks was fun. He used to do exactly what I told him to do at local events – to the point where his advisers used to ask me to ask him….he caused a bit of a local scandal once by giving me a (quite discreet) kiss at a local event.

    Regardless, what I remember is that his right hand man was persuaded to leave politics entirely when the mere suspicion of his taking a very minor bribe was raised.

  18. zoomster
    says:
    Wednesday, October 9, 2019 at 11:02 pm
    Looking back, I think you’re wrong. The Greens were a relatively new party. That they grew is not surprising. The Labor vote also grew (hugely) in that period, which suggests Labor didn’t upset many voters.
    ________________________________________
    At the 1999 election the Greens got 1.15% of the LA vote. 35 thousand people.
    At the 2002 election the Greens got 9.73% of the LA vote. 282,585 thousand people.

    Any sane analysis of the 2002 election shows that the ALP got a huge swing from centrist voters, those who had voted Liberal in 1999 while sacrificing their left base which went to the Greens. A big reason for that is the Crown Issue I would think.

  19. nath @ 10:56 pm
    The Greens vote at the 2002 Vic State election was up 8.58% on the 1999 vote.

    In 2002, The Greens polled 9.73% off a very low base – 1.15% in 1999, which was the first state election they had contested as a force.

    Since 2002 The Greens’ statewide vote has been pretty static: 10.04% in 2006, 11.21% in 2010, 11.48% in 2014, and 10.71% in 2018.

  20. zoomster
    says:

    Regardless, what I remember is that his right hand man was persuaded to leave politics entirely when the mere suspicion of his taking a very minor bribe was raised.
    __________________________________
    that’s just falling on your sword for the boss. It’s got nothing to do with the Crown donation.

  21. Corio
    says:
    Wednesday, October 9, 2019 at 11:15 pm
    nath @ 10:56 pm
    The Greens vote at the 2002 Vic State election was up 8.58% on the 1999 vote.
    In 2002, The Greens polled 9.73% off a very low base – 1.8% in 1999, which was the first state election they had contested as a force.
    Since 2002 The Greens’ statewide vote has been pretty static: 10.04% in 2006, 11.21% in 2010, 11.48% in 2014, and 10.71% in 2018.
    ___________________________
    Exactly. It was an almost instantaneous desertion of a good number of left wing ALP voters.

  22. Player One, you asked this morning about starting a political party, the Climate Party. I took you seriously and started thinking about that. I just realised I need to apologise for my tardiness in replying to you. One of my many faults is needing to “think things through”. I’m doing that. (At the moment I’m asking myself what such a party might look like. I’m generating lots of answers but so far not much coherence.) I’ll post my thoughts when or if I can make sense of them.

  23. If hard work, creativity and persistence translated into becoming a billionaire, the world would have hundreds of millions or billions of billionaires. By far the biggest contributor is luck, followed by rules that are designed to enrich and protect a ruling class. We should change the rules in a way that genuinely rewards hard work, creativity and persistence, and that empowers people because we value them as people and want to have a society based on cooperation and care rather than greed and competition.

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