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Thread: The Australian politics thread

  1. #271
    Global Moderator Matt79's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by FaaipDeOiad
    Not any more, I don't think. She's routinely denounced by all mainstream politicians every time she makes a comeback (she attibutes it to jealousy), and as SL said she hasn't been elected to any sort of office or even gone close for a decade or so.

    She used to be taken pretty seriously though. In the mid to late 90s, "Pauline Hanson's One Nation" was a pretty significant force in Australian politics, particularly in rural Queensland, and they had a number of MPs in Queensland and a couple of senators in the federal government. After Pauline left they declined a bit, but they still had one senator until last election IIRC. Now they have nobody, and got no significant vote last time. Around 1% or something I think, and even in Queensland they get no support now.

    Pauline Hanson has also been found guilty of electoral fraud and jailed, though she was later released. It wasn't really fair, but geez it was funny.
    tbf to the Australian electorate, her fleeting success was, I think, more attributable to a dissatisfaction with the three major parties, and their convergence on lots of issues, particularly free trade and economic rationalism. Country voters, particularly in Queensland and country NSW have felt extremely betrayed by the National party over its failure to protect them, as they see it, from having trade protection stripped away while not gaining access to markets. Many in the country feel their way of life is dying out while the National party, their traditional champion, has become a joke of an appendage to the economic rationalists of the Liberal party in their eyes. At the same time, memories were then fresh of Keating's reformist agenda and disinterest in their plight, so not many people wanted to look to the ALP for help.

    Hanson was a product of, and captured, this dissatisfaction. Her xenophobic (please explain) and inflammatory policies on aboriginal issues were the lightning rod for the media attention she needed, and honestly probably did play to some bigotry out there, but she wouldn't have gained traction or got the support she did if she hadn't emerged at a time when support and confidence in both major parties was at an all time low. The fear of foreigners stuff was tacitly and/or explicitly adopted by Howard - but I think that this issue resonated with people because they felt they were losing their way of life and control over their environment, not because they were "pre-existing" racists. The refugees were a scape-goat for what people felt was their growing impotence in a world we were being told we would have to adjust to, rather than seek to control.

    The fact that Hanson's agenda didn't really over any constructive solution to these problems, and that the major parties soon realised they'd lost the confidence and attention of the people, was reflected in the swiftness with which Hanson's support disappeared. By the time she went to jail, she was largely considered a joke and an embarressment.
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  2. #272
    International Coach howardj's Avatar
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    It's interesting to look at the Country's leadership (Howard and Costello) and aspiring leaders (Rudd and Gillard). Whatever you think about them, they're a fairly talented bunch who have all "made it" out in the world, before entering politics. This can only be a good thing. Two of them were Partners in law firms (Gillard and Howard); one was a star Barrister (Costello); and the other graduated with 1st Class honours and went on to become a diplomat for DFAT (Rudd). Pretty impressive group.

  3. #273
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    Quote Originally Posted by Craig
    Pretty much a farce. An interesting "complicated fall"...I suppose he just happened to fall into the policeman's elbow multiple times...


  5. #275
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  6. #276
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    We're definitely going to get a lot of dialouge from Kevin Rudd as leader. On Sunrise on Friday he was struggling for breath because he talked non-stop for something like 3 minutes.
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  7. #277
    International Captain Slow Love™'s Avatar
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    Whilst I agree that there's probably not a lot of electoral success in Pauline Hanson's future, I disagree that there is no longer a market or a groundswell for many of her (or One Nation's) ideas. Yes, the disenfranchised in many areas of Australia hit by economic rationalist policy gravitated towards her because they felt she represented an opportunity to be heard, but the reality is that, racial demagoguery aside, the major parties have actually done very little to resolve this ongoing issue. It's still festering away, and IMO we're still vulnerable to the uglier aspects of Hansonism, particularly in the wake of the muslim "multicultural crisis", and Cronulla, etc. Even Hanson has obviously realised that the battleground may have shifted, but it's still there.

    Hanson won't be the answer anymore (I think) because she has no serious organization behind her, and by now people have probably accepted she's a bit of a nuff-nuff at the political game (of course, this has it's appeal too). But there's still a significant degree of sympathy for her out there, and still quite a possibility for someone else or some other group to come along and run with these grievances (both legitimate and otherwise).

    Also, Matt, I don't think most people think she should be jail. In fact, from my experience anecdotally,most people don't, even if they detest her politics (which many, including myself do). That particular legal persecution, undertaken by Tony Abbott, was a classic case of taking the fight to a political opponent the wrong way. The original case was built on assumptions about One Nation's electoral intentions that were demonstrably untrue, and that's why she successfully appealed her conviction.
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  8. #278
    International Coach howardj's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Slow Love™

    Also, Matt, I don't think most people think she should be jail. In fact, from my experience anecdotally,most people don't, even if they detest her politics (which many, including myself do). That particular legal persecution, undertaken by Tony Abbott, was a classic case of taking the fight to a political opponent the wrong way. .
    Yes that would have been a bridge too far.

    A fork in the road, one might say.

    Abbott should take a cold shower.

    Regards,
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  9. #279
    Global Moderator Matt79's Avatar
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    I guess I wish it were true...

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  11. #281
    International Coach howardj's Avatar
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  12. #282
    International Captain Slow Love™'s Avatar
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    I noticed that Amanda Vanstone was dumped from Immigration today, indeed, right out of cabinet. This was pretty funny, as my wife asked a couple of nights ago when she was gonna get the flick, and I wondered myself. She appears to follow a pattern of taking over a portfolio that's been completely screwed up (in this case by Ruddock), taking the heat for it while limiting the damage, then being shifted back down. Can't stand the woman but she must have a lot of favors racked up that should ensure a very sweet job when she quits parliament.

    My guess is that her job was to absorb the bad news coming out of the Immigration dept inquest, and supply soft reassurances that the problems were/have been resolved. Unfortunately her replacement is the lovely Kevin Andrews, so I don't know what that's going to mean in terms of immigration rhetoric from now to the election period. I suspect it's not gonna be good though.

  13. #283
    Hall of Fame Member FaaipDeOiad's Avatar
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    Kevin Andrews? Christ, they love giving that portfolio to the worst people in the party. Hockey will be brought back to life to take it over next.

    Turnbull is in cabinet as well now, right?
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  14. #284
    International Captain Slow Love™'s Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by FaaipDeOiad View Post
    Kevin Andrews? Christ, they love giving that portfolio to the worst people in the party. Hockey will be brought back to life to take it over next.

    Turnbull is in cabinet as well now, right?
    Haha, Hockey's got Workplace Relations. And yeah, Turnbull's now Minister of Environment and Water Resources. His elevation to an important portfolio wouldn't have surprised anybody though.

  15. #285
    World Traveller Craig's Avatar
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    Coming into this year's election, what do you see as the most significant portfolio to could mean victory or defeat? I see the Enviroment and Workplace Relations as the two.

    Personally for me the IR reforms have had no affect on me, in that I have have never been forced onto anything and if anything I earn more money and workless hours.



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