Liberal Party

The federal Coalition government has dropped further in the polls following the knifing of former prime minister Malcolm Turnbull. Nevertheless, both new Prime Minister Scott Morrison and the hard right Peter Dutton/Tony Abbott faction in the Liberal Party seem determined to take politics even more to the right.

The federal Coalition government remains unstable even though Scott Morrison has replaced Malcolm Turnbull as Prime Minister in the August 24 leadership spill.

When Tasmanian Liberal director Damien Mantach garnered a spectacular promotion to Victorian deputy president in 2011, he left Tasmania to great fanfare and fond farewells.

With champagne toasts still lingering in the air, the party newsletter triumphantly said Mantach left the Tasmanian division “in excellent shape and Damien is to be congratulated for his positive contribution”.

A brilliant party machinist, Mantach was now a coveted Victorian Liberal. Finally in the centre of power, he was rubbing shoulders with premiers and befriending the future prime minister Tony Abbott.

The 2016 federal election has confirmed the continuing decline of Australia's two-party system. The relative stability that characterised the decades after World War II was shaped by a phase of unprecedented economic growth, record low unemployment and mass home ownership. But that is long gone, in fact it was an aberration. Our system of single member electorates helped paper over the current period of rising economic insecurity, but inevitably politics is catching up.

The United Firefighters Union (UFU) has produced a TV advertisement responding to a scare campaign against a new enterprise agreement for firefighters employed by Victoria's Country Fire Authority (CFA). Anti-union forces claim the agreement will damage the CFA and undermine its ability to fight fires.

More than 200 residents filled Glebe Town Hall on June 20 for a Stop WestConnex public meeting organised by the Coalition of Glebe Groups. A panel of transport and campaign activists slammed the $16.8 billion WestConnex tollway project, and outlined the case against the plan on environmental, health, economic and political grounds.

A #WECANDOTHIS sign, washed in rainbow lights, greeted politicians at Canberra Airport as they returned for the new parliamentary sitting this week. But the Liberal Party remains unmoved, and will keep their binding “no” vote for the duration of this electoral cycle.

Premier Mike Baird’s apology to the people of NSW, delivered after the resignation of two Newcastle Liberal MPs, is about as sincere as Treasurer Joe Hockey’s mea culpa to the poor.

Baird’s statement that the Liberal Party would not contest the byelections caused by the resignations — “we strongly believe we have forfeited our right to represent those electorates” — is also a political ploy. The only reason the Liberals are not standing is to avoid the humiliating loss they knew was coming.

Verbal Reality Volume 2
Provocalz
Coming October 2013
www.provocalz.bigcartel.com

Rapper Provocalz has dedicated a song to Australia's Liberal and Labor parties on his new album - but it won't be music to their ears.

On his track "Liberals or Labor", the Indigenous emcee suggests the two big parties are so contemptuous of voters that some, like him, might consider swapping their ballots for bullets:

Liberals or Labor, they both leave us to rot
So it's criminal behaviour, politicians get shot
Pop pop pop pop!
It's that real hip-hop, hip-hop

The planned expansion of coalmining in Victoria has led the member for Bass, Liberal MP Ken Smith, to oppose his own party on the issue.

Bass Coast Shire Council said it “is totally opposed to new mining of coal, and to gas extraction associated with coal (unconventional gas), within the shire,” in a resolution on March 21.

The motion asked the government to exempt land within the shire from coal and unconventional gas exploration or mining licences.

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