Monday, January 23, 2006

Update

I feel the Greens deserve a right-of-reply to my earlier speculation about their alleged preference deal with Family Fist. So here's a posting in my comments from Ray Goodlass, the Greens NSW LGBTI spokesperson:

The report that the South Australian Greens have preferenced Family First for the forthcoming state election is entirely without foundation.

The South Australian Greens have issued a statement in which they “confirm that there has not and will not be a preference deal with the Family First party because the Family First party views are inconsistent with The Greens policies such as Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transsexual and Intersex rights, support for access to abortion and voluntary student unionism”.

Let’s put this malicious story where it belongs, in the garbage bin. The Greens put principal above electoral expediency and would never preference parties so opposed to our principle of support for LGBTI rights.

In retrospect, I should have known better than to take a reported story in the Advertiser as unqualified fact. The Murdoch Media Machine has a well-known hatred of and contempt for the Greens and will do anything it can to discredit them.

However, it is convenient for the Greens to categorically deny any preference deal was made now, after the allegation is reported and the outrage of Green voters - and indeed most people of even any slightly left persuasion - becomes abundantly clear.

Regardless, this statement appears to be an iron-clad commitment and does partially restore faith. Well, my faith anyway.

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Meanwhile: Friend of mine emailed me this link about a new "gay scandal" over in the UK that has claimed the scalp of Liberal Democrats senior figure Mark Oaten.

For those of you who've seen any of the third series of Little Britain, my friend felt this might be life imitating art and likened Oaten to the unfortunate political chap in LB who has to make statements about his repeated homosexual encounters.

"And a piece of my body accidentally entered him. As far as I am concerned, that is the end of the matter!"

Unlike the many Tory sex scandals over the years, however, this one would appear not to involve breathing restriction apparatuses (no, it's not apparati).

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Finally, a Cabinet re-shuffle worth getting very nervous about?

OK, so Robert Hill sold his soul as Defence Minister, as Ruddock, Vanstone and even Leckie Downer have all done since 1996, but he was still a key moderate in the party, intelligent and one of the few ministers who didn't make me cringe when he spoke. The thought of him being replaced by Nick Minchin is spooky.

And speaking of sell-out moderates: Looks like Helen Coonan's in line for a promotion.

I wonder if totally compromising one's political and philosophical beliefs is worth the extra paycheck? Do Coonan, Ruddock, Hill etc rationalise their whoring through the extra decimal place?

Ruddock's always been the one I pity the most. Despite his increasingly uncanny resemblance to Mr Burns, I know there was once a decent man in him, many, many moons ago. In fact, my theory is that Howard, as revenge against him for being a strong Fraser/Peacock loyalist who worked to keep him from attaining the leadership back in the 80s/90s, offered Ruddock a "promotion" to do the job he knew would cut through his then-progressive soul like a hacksaw - become the single most racist Immigration Minister since the WAP.

Which is why Ruddock has aged so horrendously in the last 10 years - I actually believe for all that tenting of his fingers and purring "excellent" while he watched the footage of asylum seekers starving and abusing themselves in Baxter or getting sliced on the razor wire, it actually tugged at the last shred of humanity that existed in him - his Bobo teddy bear, if you will.

But hey - as John Travolta pointed out in Primary Colors: "You don't think Abraham Lincoln wasn't a whore before he became President?"Maybe Phil has a dream about becoming PM after Howard retires - which given Howard's current enthusiasm about retiring, and Phil's current age, means Australia may be the first country in history to have a 107 y.o Prime Minister.

He'll get along fabulously with Papa Ratzinger, no doubt...

5 Comments:

At 23/1/06 5:21 pm, Anonymous Bazza said...

Phillip Ruddock always reminds of Euriah Heap. An uncaring, indifferent person. Seems he was born in the wrong era.

 
At 24/1/06 4:20 pm, Anonymous Anonymous said...

WARNING – LONG POST
I would like to know how a NSW spokes person on GLBTI issues would know more about what the SA Labor elected but defected MP Kris Hanna has been caught out trying to get preferences to get him re elected than I? Really, this is not rhetorical, I really want to know how this could be possible.

As a past employee of Hanna and the Greens SA, ex State campaign manager, ex assistant State secretary and a member and treasurer of Hanna’s branch I DO know what has been going on. How can NSW dismiss this story without investigating its merit? I have chosen to move from being someone who gave many pounds of flesh working for the good of the party as campaign manager to now assisting Travis in this very brave and principled decision. Why, because the party has lost its way.

Many people are choosing to believe that Greens SA would never consider preferencing Family First and they are unfortunately wrong. Kris Hanna needs preferences to get any chance of re election and understandably the Democrats and ALP are just not talking to him. FFP are desperate for their first lower house seat and believe they stand a good chance in Kavel. FFP have just done some excellent preference harvesting deals with parties such a Dignity for the Disabled. FFP has a ultra pragmatic executive that operates more or less as they see fit as they do not have an internal democratic structure, so they could successfully deal with the Greens without their devotees kicking up a fuss. The Greens however are very different, and in SA that is in more ways than one. The Seat of Kavel is in the Mayo electorate. When Hanna took a motion to the Mayo Branch’s election campaign committee for them to surrender the branch authority over preferences so that a Mitchell and Kavel Greens and FFP preference swap could occur they where suitably outraged, voted the motion down and the word spread directly to myself and was confirmed by no less than 9 other party members, some of them office holders.
Yes an attempt to trade preferences DID happen and was driven by a power hungry ALP rejected MP who is desperate to get re elected.
I think that the FFP deal has been in his contemplation for a while. The refusal to pass the SA GLBTI policy which is modelled on the Tasmania policy with some state based amendments at a recent State Council by a 100% straight meeting was a disgrace. All 2005 the straight male elite have been arguing against the inclusion of IVF treatment for single women and did not want to have to defend what they saw as a controversial policy. SA does not have a GLBTI spokes person and has not all year. The previous one resigned from the Party as she was marginalised and bullied. The Womans Action Group disbanded and most have resigned from the party. The exodus from the party is staggering and our national delegate status has gone down to the minimum.
If SA does not have a GLBTI policy the election will be less troublesome for them.
The same principle applies to drugs. SA has no drugs policy. Now for the MP’s first ‘green’ bill in parliament to be about medicinal marijuana you think it would register that it is vital that the State has a drugs policy. But no, then they would have to defend that also. Green’s Drugs and GLBTI policies are the most unpopular with FFP . It would have been much harder for Kris Hanna, Mark Parnell and Ian Evans (FFP MLC) to talk preferences if SA had a real green drugs policy.
The truth is that they did meet to do a deal and Ian Evans has admitted it, the Greens in SA have denied it, and Hanna has been caught out, again.

It is not hard to put the pieces of the jigsaw together and see the real picture. But in NSW without the benefit of internal party knowledge and full political understanding of how and why we have an ALP MP heading the party, and only the spin of the official party denial, it must not only be harder, but damn near impossible. So again I ask the NSW GLBTI spokes person if he can explain how it is possible that he could know more than I on this issue?

 
At 24/1/06 4:35 pm, Blogger Sam said...

All fair enough, and somewhat concerning points anon.

But surely the proof will be in the pudding if nowhere else, ie on the How-to-Vote cards in Kavel and Mitchell on election day in March. If the Greens do not preference FF Goodlass is telling the truth, if they do he is lying.

For those of us not involved in the internal wranglings of the SA Greens, this is really the only way we can gauge the truth (or otherwise) of his commitment here.

 
At 24/1/06 4:46 pm, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hey Sam, you must have misunderstood some of my post, as I said that the Mayo members voted the motion down, therefore, there can be no deal with FFP. It is this attempt to go down this road that has been the last straw for Travis after a long string of transgetions and proof that KH is not an instument of the party and it's principles. There will not be any Green HTV cards in Kavel that preference FFP. But, the party leader Hanna would have liked their to be, that is the issue.

 
At 24/1/06 7:17 pm, Anonymous Anonymous said...

The GLBTI world is very big.
When it comes to GLBTI activists, that world is very small as regards information flow.

 

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