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Victorian Update

November 28, 2010

Of course Saturday night’s outcome is a shattering disappointment to the ALP. John Brumby was a fine Premier. The criticism that he was arrogant is a reflection of effective leadership. Only indecisive leaders escape the “arrogant ” tag so take your choice. The government performed as well as any in the perpetual balancing act managing endless demands for more spending with the requirements of economic management.
What hurt it was above all the pressure of urban growth – it was Melbourne where it lost its majority – urban sprawl, tower developments and cost of living pressures. The Big Australia implications. Population growth was the driver of Victoria’s growth and the pressure cooker extracts a price. Labor went down in the sand belt seats.
Healthy, however, to see the Green Political Party pay a price for it’s opportunism and not score a lower house seat, a good long term outcome for Victoria.

Victorian Labor can leave with its head held high. Its budgetary  management was sound and the government untainted  by scandal. Its front bench talent outweighs that of the other side. It has half the seats and the party is united. It can aim to be back within one term.

4 Comments
  1. Bob Carr permalink
    November 29, 2010 9:26 am

    What does it mean to say Labor should not be technocratic ?

    That we should not attempt to run things ?

    That we should glory in incompetence ? Or just be a party of protest and opposition ?

    The short answer is that the public want us to be a party of government – that is, to be technocrats although, of course, ones with principle and ideas.

    • nlcae permalink
      November 29, 2010 7:30 pm

      Technocracy is good. Singapore proves that.

      But 11 years in power is VERY long. It’s absolutely NORMAL for a change in governing party after a decade. JHoward proved that – losing his own seat in 2007. [QLD’s an exception – 19 years – but it was Joh]

      What needs to happen is for Brumby to STAY, regroup and offer an ALTERNATIVE government, not merely oppose. Remember, Brumby got the tail end of the decade of Labor rule, and was expected to lose. The fact that he squeezed Ted Baillieu to 45 of 88 seats shows that Brumby hasn’t lost it yet.

      45 is a one-seat majority, and the Legislative Council is likely to be 20-21 LibNat. Again, single-seat majority. Just requires one or two resignations and we have a hang. Then Brumby can make a comeback, having learnt well.

  2. Riccardo permalink
    November 29, 2010 10:05 am

    No Bob, Piping Shrike is saying the whole political system has hollowed out and is empty. Rudd was using this against the ALP, but needed the international system as a shield while doing so, when that gave out at Copenhagen, he was a sitting duck.

    It should be flattering to you that NSW is generally ahead of the pack. Wran came in with the business-ALP alliance well before Cain tried, and failed, to do something similar.

    It will be interesting to see if a new ALP emerges. I personally don’t feel the need for the ALP anymore, since Howard and his centralist high court destroyed the last vestiges of the early C20th industrial relations system, a process Hawke and Keating started. If you don’t need a union to get you a pay rise – why bother with a union party?

    Why not build a new centre left party with minimal union ties?

    A shame the Dems imploded as they might have picked up a lot of the Green vote that’s looking for a home.

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