131 thoughts on “NSW Labor Headed For Defeat

  1. Fran Barlow :While I am opposed to an indefinite commercial-in-confidence regime, you have to have c-i-c during tender to avoid collusion amongst tenderers.
    Those offering tenders should know that when once a decision is made, that the criteria and evaluation documents for all the applicants will be made public.

    Before EoY festivities commence, I have a few questions.

    1. Fran, please prove that pair-wise commercial-in-confidence agreements between a government (or its agencies) and private corporations prevent collusion among any of a finite set of private corporations. (I would accept a proof in game theoretic framework with all assumptions being made explicit.)

    2. How would a time limit on confidential information prevent damages to the public interest after a decision has been made, considering that decisions are either non-reversable on technical grounds or expensive in terms of real resources or tax payers’ money?

  2. Ernestine Gross, you just said it all, with a vengeance.
    So much for the used care salesman and process mode of politics, even if we all did just come down in the last rain shower.

  3. Ernestine Gross, unless I am totally wrong party’s to the agreement may be forced to disclose Confidential Information subject to a binding order of any court, government, semi-government authority, administrative or judicial body, or simply a requirement of the stock exchange and/or regulator. Have a happy New Year.

  4. Yes, Michael of Summerhill, you are not totally wrong but the information you provide does not quite address the issue. For now I propose to postpone further discussions until next year.

    Best wishes to All for 2011.

  5. A lot of political parties have a tendency to move towards the left (at least on economic issues) when in opposition, while moving to the right (at least on economics) when in government. This has most recently been illustrated by the Liberal Democrats in Britain. It is particularly true of the ALP. Many Labor governments have embraced market-based economic reforms of one kind or another in government, but invariably oppose such policies in opposition. (Indeed, as an undergraduate I recall one tutor dryly observing that Labor’s policy is “social democracy in opposition, economic rationalism in government”).

    The reason for this is simple. Being in government forces people to make tough decisions and confront difficult realities about the limits of what government can do, and the ability of governments to solve everyone’s problems and give everyone what they want. But when one is out of office, it is easy to promise heaven and earth to everyone and not worry about the real difficulties of funding and delivering it. As Mrs Thatcher said, “the facts of life are conservative”. At least on economics, she was mostly right. Although outside of a narrow set of economic questions, conservatives often have more difficulty confronting other difficult facts of life.

    Even the federal Liberals have drifted towards Left economic populism in opposition (witness Tony Abbott’s ridiculously generously paid parental leave promises funded by increased taxes on big business, or Joe Hockey’s bank-bashing Hansonite act). One can only hope that there would be a return to sanity on any return to government by the Coalition. Although I’m not holding my breath.

  6. @Monkey’s Uncle
    The reason for this is not quite as simple as you suggest MU. The policies of extreme conservatism (call it “economic rationalism” if you like) are just as dangerous. You may also consider the deliberate attacks on unionism which has eroded the voting base of Labor, another reason why it has veered to the right (no need to appeal to union members any more and those post political careers and donations and the perks of office are just too hard to resist?) It is increasingly the wealthy only who are being rewarded by current conservatism in our governments. When donations mostly come from the wealthy – it must be attractive for political parties to have at their disposal, the funds to advertise themselves.
    Yet, that is why Labor is being punished so severely. If you think a conservative government that continues on the same path will be any less punished…think again. Its no accident the greens vote is grrowing and the votes of independents. It may take ordinary Joe a while to wake up, given the fairly regular doses of media murdoch style…but as Murdoch notes himself….it is inevitable that the truth outs itself in the end.
    The facts of life are growing inequality in many once fairer and reasonably healthy nations (now not so healthy like the US) which needs to be addressed.

  7. What a depressing situation – we in NSW will get either a Labor or, much more likely, a Coalition government. Unless The Greens somehow end up with the unenviable position of holding the balance of power and having to make a choice of supporting one of them to allow them to form government. For someone who thinks that effective action on climate change is an absolute imperative it’s dismaying to know that Labor gives no more than lip service to this issue whilst it’s fundamental policies entrench the growing use of fossil fuels within NSW and globally and it’s perplexing as well as dismaying to know that the Coalition still find it a struggle to even acknowledge the existence of the problem whilst supporting the growing use of fossil fuels. Of course, the election will not be about this issue but about competence – yet to my mind their respective positions on it speak volumes about their respective levels of incompetence.

  8. The problem is not the election, where Labor will suffer a horrendous and well-deserved defeat, the [problem is the entrenched ALP nomenklatura which has convinced itself, Heaven alone knows how, that running the party as the mirror-image of the old Soviet parties is a successful strategy. The last time a motion was put to a Labor meeting anywhere without being decided beforehand by the apparatchiks was probably some time in the early 1990s. Since that time both membership and branch numbers have collapsed and the average apparatchik would not know a new idea if one jumped up and bit them. It is no accident that Labor now has a federal leader who seems incapable of communicating in anything but slogans.

  9. @Ken Fabos
    Ken says
    “For someone who thinks that effective action on climate change is an absolute imperative”

    and for someone who thinks that effective action on reducing inequality is an absolute imperative….also (along with action on climate change).

    I dont exactly know what it is that the ordinary person has to do here – except change their voting habits.

    Sooner or later – they will getcha getcha getcha getcha somehow… or another… sorry guys …just watched “the boat that rocked” (my 18 year old forced me – he said I could watch it in bed on New Years Day and he did all the setting up!!) and if you havent seen it you simply have to…

    We need more conservatives like we need a hole in the head.

  10. Alice, it seems like the Upper House inquiry into the controversial deal which is due to start later this month may not be going ahead for today “The Crown Solicitor has again advised (Keneally) that a standing committee of the council cannot sit or transact while the council is prorogued unless it has legislative authority to do so”. I just hope common sense prevails for Labor needs to do more than hide behind a veil of secrecy if it is going to win the next election.

  11. Alice, unlike the NSW Liberal/Nationals nearly all the right-wing deadwood in Labor are going or gone so I cannot say I’m sorry but I do give Keneally my vote for if she is giving it a red hot go.

  12. Alice, a close examination of what Mike Baird wrote about NSW Labor’s report card on the 6 December 2010 illustrates just how bad the NSW Liberals are. Much of what is written is distorted and does not stack up with the known facts.

  13. @Michael of Summerhill
    I can think of two large pieces of right wing deadwood with no regard whatsoever for the people of NSW they represent, or parliamentary process, that still remain in NSW state Labor, Moshie…
    The same two that conducted the electricity privatisation in the dead of night, appointed spin merchants from their own departments to positions as directors of electricity organisations, without any qualifications or public process or procedural vetting and transparency, when the real directors resigned en masse.
    and without consulting the party or the people of NSW.

    Kenneally and Roozendahl.

    Now tell me again Moshie that “nearly all the right wing deadwood has gone from NSW State Labor”.

    How can it be that you even believe this Mosh? Its so glaringly untrue. Or do you mean by “nearly” everyone except the Premier and the Treasurer?

  14. @Michael of Summerhill
    The last person in NSW State Labor to give it a “red hot go” Moshie, is gone. The same is forseen for KK. The electorate is going to give KK the “white hot go” her government deserves.

  15. Alice, you are wrong about NSW Labor & Keneally. If you want to read one of the best critiques unleashed by Bob Ellis in living memory then read yesterday’s piece entitled ‘How Labor can win in New South Wales’ and you just might see the light of day.

  16. No, no, no, Michael.
    You keep avoiding a plausible explanation for the arrogant and pointless privatisation antics.

  17. Hang on Moshie

    Everywhere for some decades now, we are getting the advice from Governments both liberal and labor, and the disgusting media, that private markets do things better, privatisation is the way to go, we (the little people) all need to “save more” by working longer years now, we need to “save more” to fund our retirements, markets should be open and globalisation should reign free, labor unions should be smashed for “productivity and flexibility reasons”, casual employment is better than no employment, and if we all work harder we too can be rich…

    And its all a lying lying rotting crock of garbage…. that is only making the rich richer and it is they who arent saving enough and it is they who are responsible for government budget deficits and current account deficits and the political problems and increasing economic burdens that the 80% of the population who are not in the top 20% are now feeling…

    Yet your government (Labor) and the Liberal government have both bought a massive lie and imposing it via policy on to us, that is making the majority poorer and the minority fabulously wealthy Moshie.

    When you wake up Mosh and Bob Ellis wakes up…to whom will you give both your votes?

    Read it and weep.

    Click to access Citigroup_Plutonomy_Part_2_Mar52006.pdf

  18. Paul Walter, I am not avoiding the privatisation issue for reasons spelt out before, the State of NSW has had seven quarters of economic growth and continues to prosper. In my opinion the Inquiry would give Keneally extra brownie points if everthing is above board. Thumbs up Labor.

  19. small niggle.

    why is selling the publicly owned to corporations called privatisation?

    it is not privatisation it is corporatisation.

  20. Michael of Summerhill :
    Alice, unlike the NSW Liberal/Nationals nearly all the right-wing deadwood in Labor are going or gone so I cannot say I’m sorry but I do give Keneally my vote for if she is giving it a red hot go.

    Perhaps I missed it, but what innovative and thoughtful ideas has Ms Keneally come up with for improving the performance of transport, health, education and social services in NSW?

  21. Boconnor, maybe you should read Kristina Keneally’s 2010 McKell Awards speech to get a better overall picture of what Labor has done since the Liberal/Nationals were last ousted. And whilst I am not entirely happy with some of Labor’s past performance, and/or the State’s nearing $50 billion debt, and/or the development of Barangaroo which will end up being a monstrosity, the State is not in dire straits. And for this very reason Labor will be getting my vote.

  22. may :small niggle.
    why is selling the publicly owned to corporations called privatisation?
    it is not privatisation it is corporatisation.

    I don’t know either.

    I agree selling public assets to corporations is not ‘privatisation’. It is switching from one type of corporation to another one.

  23. @Michael of Summerhill
    Moshie – I feel so terribly sorry for you …because you press on supporting NSW Labor as an acceptable aterlantive to the right wing policies of NSW state liberal.
    Moshie – thye are no different at all and you have been fooled into being an advocate for the policies of gross inequality.
    Your party is a sham. Liberal is equally as bad.

  24. @Michael of Summerhill
    And Moshie …I am going to refer you back to my link at 19 and ask you …what rare your comments on the past decade of NSW Labor rule and growing inequality in Australia (same in Canada, UK, US)

    What has your NSW Labor government done to improve it? Nothing. They have followed every enerich the rich policy that has been shoved down our throats as so many huge lies (get rid of unions, privatise all, reduce governments and givernment services, globalise, be competitive, save for yoyr own retirements, work longer, harder, longer, harder, endure price rises in all basic services, put up with oligarchic control over every day necessities, pay GST and learn to love it, pay user pays everywhere for things once free,)

    Your government can go to hell Moshie. If they ever were a “Labour party” they arent any more. Not one bit of them. Not in NSW and not in QLD and only in federal labor because Gillard has been forced to get on with the greens (otherwise they would be any different to liberal there. Gillards undoing of workchoices was pathetic. It wasnt undone.)

    Labor sucks, in fact. So do Liberals. Abbott is desperate to bring in workchoices V8.

    And you Moshie (zombie of NSW labor) never made one comment on my link about the rising inequality. You wont either until they take away your vote.
    Thats the only thing we have that the wealthy who run the show..fear (our vote – one person, one vote).

    But John Howard was after it – he wanted to make voting non compulsory. After they get that, the next change will be a vote percentage according to your “contribution” ie income ie your vote will be worth next to nothing compared to the rich.

    In that way, Moshie, any equality will be lost forever and you better get used to being part of an oppressed underclass (you are now anyway).

  25. “Your government can go to hell Moshie”

    “Labor sucks, in fact”

    “And you Moshie (zombie of NSW labor)”

    Alice, I though I was the only one around here who has a cacophonous tendency.

  26. @Tony G
    Tony G – you are not alone. Now go to the sandpit where I should be too before I accuse you of being a redneck teleprompter!

  27. Alice, I have acknowledged Labor made past mistakes but think of what is going to happen to our last remaining State public assets if the NSW Liberal/National’s do get into Office. Already there is talk of a firesale.

  28. Alice, you don’t have to heed what I say but you might want to take note of what Dr John Kaye thinks about the NSW Liberal/Nationals that ‘The Coalition has a tarnished track record of sell-offs when it was last in office’.

  29. MOSHie

    Have you contemplated that governments role should be primarily to regulate?

    Wherever possible, government should not compete with an efficient private sector; and that businesses and individuals – not government – are the true creators of wealth and employment.

  30. “‘The Coalition has a tarnished track record of sell-offs when it was last in office’”

    Don’t they all. There are good privatisations and bad privatisations. I’m struggling to think of the last one in NSW that passed a CBA, was well-planned, well-executed, and satisfied its expected KPIs. Alice put it best:

    Labor sucks, in fact. So do Liberals.

    “it is not privatisation it is corporatisation”

    May, the latter is generally used to mean changing the managerial (and often financial) structure to one more in line with a corporate model, in order to emulate the higher efficiency of the private sector (thanks to changing incentives). But I think that’s a bit pointless. You might as well sell or give away the entity and free up the work hours that would otherwise gone into keeping track of the government enterprise.

  31. @Michael of Summerhill
    If Dr John Kaye thinks that Mosh ….then my god…who exactly has presided over the privatisation of all things state and the massive impost of user pays over the past ten years???….
    if it was a mudslide to the right…NSW State Labor wins by a dirty mile.

  32. Alice, politicians like Lee Rhiannon also think campaigns like the Sydney Ferries Safe in Public Hands highlights the need for governments to listen to the community and workers in the industry and to maintain public ownership of Sydney Ferries, and we all know the end result. But when John Kaye commented on O’Farrell’s 2010 budget response speech, he should have said the privatisation of assets like the desalination plant & the ferries are as just for starters. So don’t believe a word of what the NSW Liberal/Nationals are saying. They are all bull.

  33. @Michael of Summerhill
    Im giving up arguing with you Mosh. You dont even have a commengt on my link at post 19.

    Yet you still want to play Labor advocate. Zombie Mosh. Its not restricted to the liberals you know.

    You have to think – not just parrot. I dont care how long you have run around and been a worker for the ALP (all the more reason to think).

    I give up Mosh – I really do. I can no longer argue with you. You are a disappointment and part of the political appartachniks unthinking and uncaring machine. You are as much a member of the denialists club as anyone else (so named as being usually right wing) precisely because of your continued devotion to a betrayal and a lost cause..from NSW state Labor (take away the name Mosh – they dont deserve it).

  34. @Michael of Summerhill
    As for ferries in safe hands Moshie… Labor presided over appoiting a ferries chief who rorted state funds and paid for his own private expenses and went to court about it and had to pay it back two years later

    Jeez Mosh – if the state govt had been any good at their job – it wouldnt have take two years tro stop him

  35. Alice, maybe you have forgotten as to why Unions NSW launched the ‘Better Services for a Better State’ campaign in Newcastle but the rest of NSW has not. To refresh your memory, O’Farrell has not ruled out closing schools and hospitals; and widespread sacking of teachers, nurses and police officers. No bull just ask Shadow Treasurer Mike Baird.

  36. @Michael of Summerhill
    says ” O’Farrell has not ruled out closing schools and hospitals; and widespread sacking of teachers, nurses and police officers”

    Thats rubbish Mosh (OFarrell has not ruled out…he hasnt ruled in either)- anyway what do you think Labor has been doing? The same – selling schools and university and Tafe lands, closing and selling police stations, closing hospitals and sacking the associated staff.

  37. Alice, when O’Farrell launched the Liberal party’s campaign last March he said the next election will determine the future of new South Wales for decades to come. Well now know better as to what he really meant, screw the unions and screw the whole idea of a ‘Better Services for a Better State’ which is to protect what is left of NSW public service jobs, public assets and public services. No Alice can’t trust those who jump in bed with Nazis.

  38. Alice, to give you an idea of the screwballs within the Liberal Party one does not have to go further than Marie Ficcara, Member of the Upper House, who in the past made traditional mafia-style throat slitting gestures at Young Liberal President Scott Farlow and Young Liberal Executive Member Simon Fontana, saying “you two are finished!”

  39. Michael of Summerhill :
    Boconnor, maybe you should read Kristina Keneally’s 2010 McKell Awards speech to get a better overall picture of what Labor has done since the Liberal/Nationals were last ousted.

    Thanks for the heads-up. I read the speech. It’s in two parts: one looking at the last 15 years, the other at the future. Here is my summary of her list of the NSW ALP’s achievements, with my comments in brackets. Over the last 15 years NSW Labor has:
    – built a bridge (adding to road congestion)
    – built the Sydney Orbital network (as private toll roads, which as JQ has noted, does not allow for the proper management of the road system)
    – built one extension to a railway line (in 15 years!)
    – built two railway duplications (when the plan was for more than this to improve rail system reliability)
    – built a light rail system (which is not integrated with the heavy rail system)
    – put more buses on the road in more suburbs (which are still overcrowded in peak hours)
    – extended pensioner tickets to West and South of Sydney
    – introduced testing of children for hearing problems
    – achieved the highest levels of literacy and numeracy in Australia for school students (except for indigenous students whose results have not improved, and it would be interesting to see the results for non-indigenous students from poor suburbs)
    – shifted old growth forests to sustainable production
    – improved the quality of water at beaches and in the harbour (fair call)
    – created the best police force in the country (hard to judge this – what does “best” mean in this context – the NSW Auditor General has certainly found it is pretty inefficient)
    – reduced property crime
    – improved OH&S protection and the workers comp scheme (hard to judge, has the injury and fatality rate at work fallen over the 15 years?)
    – reduced the rate of Aboriginals dying in custody (but the indigenous incarceration rate is higher now than it was in the past)
    – provided public support for people with a disability (what proportion of those with a disability are being helped? What proportion are missing out?)
    – made a priority for fixing domestic violence (has the domestic violence rate gone up or down during the last 15 years?)
    – delivered a health system with the nation’s best performance in elective surgery and has high client satisfaction (if you combine “good”, “very good” and “excellent” ratings into one figure)

    For the future, the ALP will:

    – commit to the Western Express Line (unless they change their mind – see the list of planned then dropped rail line improvements for details)
    – commit to an extension of the light rail system (ditto)
    – commit to cheaper fares (ditto)

    Fifteen years is a long period of time to bring about change. It’s been time lost and wasted. We could have had, for instance, significant public transport investment instead of toll roads, reduced child sexual and physical abuse (through an overall of a badly performing DOCS system) and real improvements in the health and well being of indigenous people in NSW (through a focus on health, education and reducing the high rates of incarceration).

    But what I find most depressing about the NSW ALP is the lost opportunity over 15 years to improve both the quality of political debate and the quality of services. For instance to suggest and implement innovative ways to keep the poor out of jail rather than the knee jerk “law and order auctions” held each election. Or to make plain what levels of performance is expected for government services and to be honest about where they are going well, where they are going badly, and hence where they need to improve.

    That amount of time was enough to educate people about what the evidence says is needed to fix problems (or is likely to fix them) – not just what prejudice and shock jocks say is needed.

  40. Boconnor, mistakes have been made and you are correct in regards to ‘lost opportunities’. But how things quickly change for now it is the NSW Liberal/Nationals who are on the wrong foot for refusing to support reforms having an independent umpire cost election promises. O’Farrell is all bull.

  41. “- built a light rail system (which is not integrated with the heavy rail system)”

    They allowed a private operator to build one short light rail line, not a system. They finally caved in to commonsense and started work on extending this one line, including integrating it with heavy rail.

  42. @Michael of Summerhill
    Moshie – its too late for OFarrell to “screw the unions”. The “screwing of unions started with bloody sell out Hawke (the great ACTU leader), was backed up by sleazy keating and has been followed slavishly by every two bit politician since, left and right. Julia got voted in on a mandate od “done and dusting workchoices”.

    Instead she dusted the edges but didnt move the fundamental constructions.

    I am ripped off. Workers are ripped off. Our kids are being treated like KleeneX tissues in the workplace.

    Not good enogh for me to vote either Labor or Liberal and I guess Ill be a pissed off, turned off voter who will vote marginal until I see something better for me, my kids, my grandkids in the workplace. Casualisation and contracting is an evil abuse amsquerading as somehing useful.

    The bloody academics at MQ are niow picketing open days (along with UNSW). It wont do any good until they can get everyone out sitting on the grass (problem is the causals keep working because the union do jack and they dont join).

    Casualisation via workchoices, Divide and conquer unions. Those scumbags write the laws Mosh and they push people down and they parade their hair dos on voting day and idiots like you runa round and hand out for labor (or liberal).

  43. @Michael of Summerhill

    “Alice, to give you an idea of the screwballs within the Liberal Party one does not have to go further than Marie Ficcara, Member of the Upper House, who in the past made traditional mafia-style throat slitting gestures at Young Liberal President Scott Farlow and Young Liberal Executive Member Simon Fontana, saying “you two are finished”

    Screwballs absent from State Labor? Now lets see

    Roosendahl (trhe ghoul) presided over a massive sell ooff whilst simteanously profitting on real estate deals ndown Marounbra way while he had inside information.

    Kenneal whos husband stands to make a quid from electric car parking spaces at bangaroo development, after being enticed from his job in cabinet.

    Some Labor politicians son who beneffitted by installing street lights (sorry Obeid or Tripodi?) Big tender, successful winner.

    The great “do you know who I am” by hwatsername who needs anger managemnt classes.

    Rorting office expenses by another. Rorting pay by another female….visiting same sex brothels…….beating up on wives….not declaring all recinary interests.

    Give me a break….give us all a break from your championing the party of sordidness and now you want to throw stones at the libs???. Of course yo do – you my friend Moshie, fight for your party (you are obaviously amoyjthpiece for State Labor) At least give them (new parties or independant) a chance to be sordid, rather than the sordid we already know. A new sordid is better than the old sordid

    or is it (you only get one vote – dont waste it).

  44. I have bad spelling above but thats a sure sign Im really ticked off with zombie Moshie who gets in here and spreads Labor propaganda around (there are others who spread liberal / libertarian propanganda around).

    Guess I really dont like propaganda no matter the source.

    There is nothing to commend NSW state Labor and theior rotten performance here or for the past 15 years. They stink. If there wasnt an election coming up who here amongst us thinks Kenneally or Roozendahl would have agreed to font up to the privatisation of electricity inquiry???

    Of their own free will??? (come now…..)

    These people (Kenneally and Roozendahl) think accountability and transparency and consultation is something they owe to no-one.

    Its a joke.

  45. Alice, reaching an enterprise agreement can be frustrating and I feel sorry for those involved but hang in there for time is running out for those few remaing NSW Unis holding out.

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