Home > Australian politics > Queensland election – the battle of mediocrity

Queensland election – the battle of mediocrity

With the election upon us on Saturday it’s already a pretty foregone conclusion that the LNP will romp in and that Labor will be shellacked thoroughly.

I know there is a big “it’s time” factor with getting the LNP over the line, but it’s profoundly disappointing that no-one is paying attention to the astonishing lack of talent in the LNP ranks.  The fact that they had to go to someone outside their ranks to lead them is a pretty serious indicator that there is nothing going on at all.  The fact that that they barely laid a glove on a seriously blunder-prone ALP government is telling…the Courier Mail was the defacto Opposition for most of this time.

The Presidential style campaign by both sides has been a telling factor in hiding the deficiencies in both camps, but I think Campbell Newman has been extremely lucky to be in the position he is in.

Normally a pollie who jumped ship from a major disaster recovery effort for a big promotion leveraging his elevated public profile who have strips torn off him, but he has managed to skate through relatively unharmed.

The questions about his and his families business dealings are verging on the suss, but the manner that the ALP pursued it has turned off as lot of voters…unnecessarily I think.  I believe he still has some questions to answer and his continual answer of “I’ve done nothing wrong” is your standard get out clause, conveniently sidestepping the issue of someone he has employed doing something wrong.

Newman has always been a prickly character and is remarkably thin-skinned for a politican…witness his refusal to shake Kate Jones’ hand after the debate, insisting that she personally apologise to his wife.

The other serious question of his character revolves around the leadership issue.  Now it’s anything but a foregone conclusion that he will win Ashgrove, so any normal organisation would have a back-up plan especially in this unique situation.  This gives us two options; either they have no “Plan B” or they have a backup plan and are not going to communicate it.

If they do not have a backup plan then they are either incredibly stupid, or amazingly arrogant to assume that he will win.

If they do have a backup plan but don’t want to publicise it then this is an indication that they do not have faith that people are voting for the party but simply voting for the leader i.e. only voting LNP to get Newman in power.  This seems to indicate that they have no confidence in the abilities of the other leadership candidates or their appeal to the public.

So though this campaign is all about Newman, he can’t govern the state by himself and requires others of some ability to govern with him…and it appears that none of his colleagues have that ability but are being masked by the Newman hoopla.

I’m afraid we’ll have to suffer through another 3 years of neglect, but hopefully the voters of Ashgrove will come to their senses and make sure that the tunnel builder extraordinaire will not get a seat and can bugger off back to his dodgy developments.

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  1. Catching up
    March 20, 2012 at 1:55 PM

    Treasurer thrown out. Plus the member for Kennedy.

  2. Catching up
    March 20, 2012 at 3:27 PM

    Sorry, do not know how that comment got there. Does not make much sense in this context.

    After nearly three decades, it is time for any government to go.

    Renewal is a necessary process in the political cycle.

    From what we see from afar, they will have to do that renewal quickly.

    I see nothing that gives me confidence in what the Opposition can bring. If one cannot find a leader within the elected MP’s, one wonders why.

    Is it the fact that there is no talent is it as is more likely, they have no one they can agree on.

  3. Duncan
    March 20, 2012 at 4:49 PM

    What has Campell Newman promised?
    The only thing that I’m able to get from the news (I don’t live in QLD) is that Anna Bligh has got to go!
    It seems from here (WA) that Newman is going to get the job by default much like Colin Barnett, who was going to retire! prior to the election.

    • March 20, 2012 at 4:52 PM

      His big pitch is “I’m not Labor” coupled with “after 20 years of Labor”.

      Since the polls trended against him in Ashgrove he’s even been putting out ads begging people in seats “like” Ashgrove to vote for him…pathetic.

      • March 20, 2012 at 6:26 PM

        Hi Massive,

        That seemed to work wonders for BO’F and he kept hammering it home. Now taken up by the Qld opposition and I’m afraid with what will be a telling affect.

        • March 21, 2012 at 9:10 AM

          The only upside I can see is that like the LNP governments in NSW and Vic, they will quickly revert to form and start abandoning promises left right and centre, meaning that it might have ramifications for the Federal election.

  4. March 20, 2012 at 5:52 PM

    Do I detect a big case of sour grapes syndrome?

    Labor are in the pits up here because they have made some really bad decisions like the sell off state assets when they specifically promised not to do so, they changed the way that nurses were paid and when the new system failed they were able to fix it, They allowed massive fraud in the health department, the list just goes on and on.
    Its not just the ‘its time factor” as you want to suggest but the fact that Labor are politically bankrupt. and we Queenslanders are utterly sick of this governemnt.

    • March 21, 2012 at 9:09 AM

      They allowed massive fraud in the health department, the list just goes on and on.

      Yes I can see how they specifically told this clown to go ahead and take all the money he wants.

      Iain, I live here as well and even though the ALP government is bad, the forthcoming LNP governments will be a shop of horrors.
      As a Queenslander myself I thoroughly object to you speaking on my behalf and I know more than a few people who aren’t looking forward to Newman as Premier, being fully aware of what a slimy lightweight he really is.

      • March 21, 2012 at 11:49 AM

        MS
        I would not presume to speak on your behalf but I think that you are wrong to believe that the LNP government will be ‘a shop of horrors” but that is really in the to be discovered category.
        But you have to admit that the Bligh government have lowered the bar so far that even Stephen Hawking could clear it with ease! So don’t despair too much and look forward to the paradigm shift in your blogging when you won’t feel so obliged to to defend the indefensible just because the incumbent comes form your side of politics.

        • March 21, 2012 at 2:21 PM

          Iain you must be licking your lips at the prospect of a Labor loss. I hope the party you vote for lives up to your expectations.

          • March 21, 2012 at 2:34 PM

            Migs
            It certainly is hard not to peak too soon about the expected rout of Labor, heck I may even beak out a wee dram on Saturday which for me is a big deal as I usually stick to Earl Grey Tea.
            That said of course I also hope that they live up to may expectations but to be honest I will be happy if they just do better than Bligh on the mundane things like paying nurses and general administration.

        • March 21, 2012 at 3:32 PM

          Iain, I have lived through the other LNP governments including Joh’s and Borbidge’s.

          I know precisely what we are in for….

          • March 21, 2012 at 3:50 PM

            No two governments of the same political flavour are going to taste exactly the same especially when the ingredients are different , so can we just wait and see how it pans out?
            After all when its inevitable isn’t it better (from your point of view as a lefty) to hope fro the best? Who knows the trains may even run on time under a Newman government!

          • March 21, 2012 at 4:20 PM

            Iain, if paying nurses is an issue then I reckon you’d be rather unhappy with the current Vic Government. 🙂

          • March 22, 2012 at 7:25 AM

            Migs
            I don’t know how au fait you are with the nurses pay saga up here but essentially it goes like this, Some numpty in Queensland health decided that the system for calculating and paying nurses and other health workers needed to be reformed so they invented this great new computer system to do this task and touted it as the best thing since sliced bread. The trouble was that it just did not work. Deserving nurses and other workers were under paid , wrongly paid or just not paid at all, worse still the stuff ups seemed to be completely immune to all attempts at fixing the problem for months and there are still problems with the system now, more than a year later.

            From what I can gather the problem in Victoria is just a straight out pay dispute, a problem of much lesser magnitude by any measure.

  5. reb
    March 21, 2012 at 2:21 PM

    I think Bob Katter’s got a lot going for him.

    • March 21, 2012 at 3:31 PM

      A lot of insanity….

    • drsusancalvin
      March 25, 2012 at 3:53 PM

      “They’re happy little Kattermites as Right as Right can be,
      They all enjoy election funds at 4%, you see,
      There’s plenty of pea-nutters there to
      reach this humble mark because they love
      the loony right, they really love the poofta fight,
      They will oppose the lefty clique!” © *

      *Originally posted at Lavatus Prodeo

  6. reb
    March 21, 2012 at 2:22 PM

    He just needs to take some hair styling tips from Clive Palmer.

  7. Tom of Melbourne
    March 21, 2012 at 7:03 PM

    I don’t mind Anna Bligh, she seems intelligent and articulate. She certainly outshines Gillard when they’ve appeared on the same stage.

    Bligh showed so much compassion during the floods a year ago, only to be followed by an inarticulate and bumbling performance by Gillard.

  8. March 22, 2012 at 8:44 AM

    Who knows the trains may even run on time under a Newman government!

    Under Newman it’ll be tunnels and roads all the way…except of course for the Cross River Rail tunnel that we desperately need. Instead he will “save money” by extending one stations platform and reduce signalling time…yeah that’ll fix the issue.
    Newman has no idea about public transport and we can expect plenty more PPP’s with his developer mates…

    • March 22, 2012 at 10:35 AM

      MS
      I don’t get how you lefties are such fans of public transport. In my experience it is uncomfortable expensive and more importantly it never seems to take you where you need to go when you want to travel!
      But then again I live in the country and I have never had unrealistic expectations of bus or train services. Give me a motorcycle or a car any time rather than a bus or a train!
      If you were really thinking about the future perhaps you should become more of a fan of telecommuting so that people could work from home and give the whole dreary commute to the office the flick.

      • March 23, 2012 at 9:02 AM

        Iain, if you live in the country then public transport is not for you.
        In the city public transport is a godsend…I can think of nothing worse than the frustration and delays associated with crawling along in peak hour traffic.
        Instead I get to sit in an air-conditioned train and read for 30 minutes before the stress of the day starts…bliss.
        Couple that with the efficiency of moving a far larger quantity of people for less resources used, I hardly see how it is a “leftie” only dream.
        And telecommuting will become more of a reality once the NBN comes into play. Try running a video conference over ADSL (if you can get it) at the moment and you can see just how good our current solution is..

        • March 23, 2012 at 12:02 PM

          Oh I get that public transport can work for some people MS but if the Public transport routes don’t fit the journey between your home and workplace it becomes very frustrating and time wasting.

          I still have my doubts about the NBN even for telecommuting , after all what percentage of anyone’s work requires High -def video conferencing? most of the jobs that would lend themselves to telecommuting deal with simple text and that does not need super high-speed internet.

  9. March 22, 2012 at 5:09 PM

    So Iain, I take it you’re in favour of the NBN?

    • March 22, 2012 at 6:56 PM

      Migs
      I tend to think that you don’t need a Rolls Royce when a Ford will get you there and realistically for most jobs that could be done online you don’t need anything more than ADSL type speeds.

      • Shane in SE QLD
        March 22, 2012 at 7:31 PM

        It’s hard to know how to respond to a statement as silly as this.
        Surely looking at the massive increase in amounts of data being transferred (in both residential and commercial situations) over the last 10 years would tend to indicate that something that is satisfactory right now might not be acceptable in the not-too-distant future. And if you’re going to overhaul the current system you should be undertaking a degree of ‘future-proofing’ to make sure the work you’re doing now won’t be obsolete in 5-10 years time.

        I suppose if all you do is sit a home blogging, maybe you don’t need much in the way of speed – even dial-up might be sufficient for your needs. Doesn’t mean that the rest of us don’t have different needs.

        Re. the election, this next lot are bound to be a nightmare. While I agree that Labor are a shambles, they would have been voted out years ago if we’d had a half-decent opposition.

        • March 23, 2012 at 12:10 PM

          Shane
          The massive increase amounts of data moved over consists of what precisely? Mostly its not at all related to business its stuff like streaming video or similar entertainments. Cute but precisely how essential would that be for telecommuting? Not much I reckon.
          I have a mate who runs his food business consisting of three shop fronts and he monitors all three workplaces with a real time video feed of all three via adsl and at the same time he gets the sales data in real time. I would be curious to hear how you think faster internet would make a difference.

          • March 23, 2012 at 5:41 PM

            Iain, you almost sound like the right wingers who reckon that the NBN is only good for downloading porn.

          • Shane in SE QLD
            March 23, 2012 at 7:59 PM

            Not the old ‘I have a mate….’ defense – that’s about on par with the ‘a bloke at the pub told me…’

            I’ve had ADSL Sprint (the faster ADSL version) access before when I lived in Brisbane a few years back, and based on the performance I was getting I’d be amazed to see it supporting three live video feeds simultaneously (without substantial lag) The sales data is a different story, that’s only small amounts of data so wouldn’t need much in the way of bandwidth.

            To give you an example, look at the size of digital images now as compared to 6-7 years ago. If you’re having to receive numerous images at 2 Meg each, plus large spreadsheets (60-70Meg) plus other assorted files, you don’t want to be waiting around all day for the data to upload to your machine. Hardly an efficient use of time for people working from home. Even powerpoint presentations with several photos / tables can be quite large (easily up around the 50-60 meg size). That’s my perspective, and that isn’t even considering the truly data-intensive fields that other people work in. Given that similar files would have been considerably smaller even just a few years ago shows the basic error in your reasoning above. The whole ‘video streaming’ thing gets thrown around a lot, but it’s the other types of data that have grown in size that you need to be able to pull down fairly quickly. I’ll go back to my original statement – you don’t understand the need for the NBN because you clearly aren’t moving anything like the ‘typical’ amounts of data about that are commonplace today.

            I use wireless now, purely because I’m in a regional area and don’t have much of a choice – and it is pretty ordinary. I for one can’t wait for the NBN rollout to my town, because we might actually see some degree of competition and an improvement in the packages on offer

  10. Catching up
    March 22, 2012 at 11:02 PM

    Iain, there is nothing wrong with public transport. At least one can read a book on the train.

    Yes, it is not perfect. Sometimes timetables go amiss.

    Still better than being struck in traffic jams.

    It might surprise you that not all see the expense of running a car, money well spent.

    One has only has to look at how the Internet use has increase in the last couple of years, to know the old worn out system could not cope any more.

    It is far past the time that extending the copper wire system that is at the end of it’s useful life makes sense.

    The NBN will meet our needs well into this century. The same as the copper wire did in the last.

    I imagine that Iain is one of those that believe wireless will be sufficient. I would also assume he would be among those that are rejecting to the towers, that are needed to drive it and the mobile phone.

    • Duncan
      March 23, 2012 at 12:18 AM

      Public transport actually makes sense when you see the amount of driver only cars on the road.
      It is, or should be more efficient than 4 lane freeways with 1 person in every car. We have a lot to learn from asian countrys and definitely european ones in the planning of the “commute” and livability of Urban and Suburban areas.
      As far as the NBN goes NO ONE repeat NO ONE will want to go back to slower speeds and price gouging by telstra and others.

    • March 23, 2012 at 12:14 PM

      A small motor scooter is a good alternative to public transport both in terms of flexibility and cost C U

      As it happens I am undecided on the viability of wireless especially for those of us who live in the country. our local visiting library service try to work with wireless and it pretty crappy.

  11. Catching up
    March 23, 2012 at 5:13 PM

    Not safety and not at seventy.

    • March 23, 2012 at 6:29 PM

      Surely CU a motor scooter is safer than the bicycle so beloved of the left? it is faster has better suspension and better brakes…

      • Shane in SE QLD
        March 23, 2012 at 8:06 PM

        With a bike, you aren’t paying rego or insurance, you aren’t putting fuel in it, you typically sit on the far left (or can ride on the footpath in QLD if necessary) so you’re not forced to sit right in the lane and mix it up with dickheads in 4wds who are likely to plough straight into you because they aren’t paying attention to the road.

        Having commuted in Brisbane for number of years on a bicycle, I certainly wouldn’t consider a motor scooter safer. They might have better brakes, but they’re also heavier and can go faster, which means a greater stopping distance.

        • March 24, 2012 at 8:02 AM

          Actually Shane I am willing to bet that from the same speed that the stopping distance of a motorcycle would be shorter than that for a bicycle. Further a motorcycle can “lane split” just as well as a bicycle and because they can generally overtake traffic at the lights progress through traffic is superior to both a car and peddle power. I say this from the experience of thirty years riding motorcycles.

      • Catching up
        March 23, 2012 at 9:31 PM

        Bus and trains will serve me well. I am glad to leave the car and crowded roads behind me.

        I have not relied on bikes since U was a young child, riding to school.

  12. jane
    March 24, 2012 at 12:19 AM

    shane, I have wireless as well for the same reason as you and it’s pretty bloody ordinary. Unfortunately, I won’t ever have access to NBN.

    Iain Hall is like all Liars Party fans.in that he thinks that if you’re upgrading infrastructure you only need to think ahead to next week, not the next 10, 20, 30 or more years ahead.

    If he was in charge of car design, we’d still be driving model T Fords and while he might think that’s fine for him, the rest of us don’t think so.

    A motor scooter in city traffic. Sounds really safe. Too easy to be cleaned up.

    • March 24, 2012 at 7:57 AM

      Jane
      I actaully know a bit about cars and their design, likewise I am very familiar with two wheeled transport having built examples of both from scratch so what they would be building if I was in charge of car and MC design would actually be very far removed from the model T.
      The parameters would revolve around reducing the overall mass of cars by using light weight materials in their construction which would mean smaller engines could easily move reasonable payloads with an equally smaller environmental footprint .
      Further motor-scooters can be very safe as BMW’s C1 showed http://www.autoblog.com/2008/08/06/bmw-considering-a-3-wheeler-large-scooters/ they made a machine that so well protected its driver that no helmet was required and the laws in several European countries were altered to suit the innovative machine.

      • jane
        March 24, 2012 at 11:07 PM

        Iain, I have no doubt that such a motor scooter exists, but I imagine that the purchase price would put it out of most people’s reach.

        And a scooter doesn’t offer much protection from the elements in winter.

        Having said that, I used to treadle to work for many years when I worked in Adelaide, rain, hail or shine, so I guess I can’t complain about getting wet while commuting.

        I guess the other advantage is there’s no rego or insurance for a treadly and you don’t have to pay for fuel, except that which is required to keep you alive.

        And then there’s the obvious health benefits.

        I used public transport when I didn’t treadle. Public transport is great, imo-someone else has to put up with the traffic, you can read while being chauffeured and you don’t have to worry about finding, or paying for, a park. It’s a win win situation.

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