Allan Takes Aim Blog

The winner of hearts and minds will win the next election

Posted on: 20 May 2013

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The winner of hearts and minds will win the next election

No doubt members of the Liberal/National Coalition parties, the Labor Party, Coalition and the parties of odds and sods plus Independents hope, that on Saturday 14th September, the voters of Australia will send them to Parliament for the next three years. I don’t know if they’ve ever read Alexander Pope’s ‘Essay on Man ‘in which he said: ‘Hope springs eternal in the human breast’ but from what I hear I think many Labor candidates plus the candidates from the odds and sods parties and independents might need a miracle more than hope springing eternal to get elected.

However, and speaking for myself, if I had the money I would be tempted to go on holiday until voting day, Saturday 14th September, to avoid hearing candidates repeating the same arguments day after day.

And my sanity would benefit also by my not having to read, listen to or watch members of the political commentariat with their obvious political biases give their analysis about the policies of the parties and Independents and their opinion about which ones they think will be successful or failures. I liken many political commentators to spectators at football matches and other events that draw audiences because, if they could be believed, they know how to win better than the players involved. Not that many ever try to put their knowledge to the test.

At the same time I would also escape the paragons of political virtue from various unions, business and other organisations telling the community at large which party or candidates they should vote for. Unsurprisingly the candidates they support are the candidates pushing their agendas. And let me say to readers who say I shouldn’t comment unless I’m prepared to get personally involved in politics I did in 1992 by establishing the Canberra Unity Party and standing five candidates at the 1992 ACT election. Unfortunately, we were not successful.

However, as I am not going on holiday I will continue blogging about September’s federal election and comment on the announcement by the Liberal/National Coalition that has sent shock waves through the ranks of the public service In Canberra. The announcement: if elected in September it will reduce jobs in the public service by 12,000.

Unfortunately, when reported by major players in the Canberra commentariat, this has been reported as the Coalition axing to 12,000 jobs in Canberra. Not true. The truth is, the Coalition has said 12,000 jobs will go by attrition over two years. Effectively because two thirds of the public service is employed outside Canberra, on a pro rata basis 2,000 jobs or 38 jobs will go each week for two years which puts a different face on the policy.

But the ‘axing’ of 12,000 jobs is an example of what can only be described as an example of malicious misinformation designed to advantage the Coalition’s opponents. While this is not to say the Coalition does not do the same what it does say is why voters have become cynical about politics and why they think the statements and promises of politicians are not to be trusted.


Such misinformation aside the September election will be one of the strangest because neither current Labor PM Julia Gillard nor Tony Abbott, Leader of the Coalition is liked by the electorate. Making things worse for Labor neither the PM’s deputy nor many of her ministers are liked either and worse still, neither are they trusted.

As a fan of having Independents in parliament, my personal disappointment is that in the current parliament the Independents seemed not to have enough independence to vote for or against government policy on what they thought of it. Instead, and despite their rhetoric to the contrary, they and the Greens effectively joined in coalition with the Government.

Were they right or wrong? That the community clearly seems to be leaning to Abbott and if government is supposed to act on the will of the people, it would still be unwise of Abbott to count his chickens before they are hatched.

Comment welcome.

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