Category: Liberal Party

17 Aug


End times for Abbott’s prime ministership?


Abbott Morrison Turnbull

Let’s get something clear right away — same-sex marriage has not been and will not be the kind of issue that could destroy Tony Abbott’s prime ministership. Electorally, despite overwhelming popular support for equal marriage rights, it has consistently been a lower-order issue in terms of votes. And within the party room Abbott is on the […]

29 Dec


Australian politics 2014: Decline & decomposition


{Graphic by @deptofaustralia}

Abbott has to perform well as prime minister next year, not just to preserve his leadership and give the Coalition a chance of re-election but also to restore public faith in the political class and Australia’s system of parliamentary democracy. The year 2015 has to see a restoration of political stability in the national interest. […]

01 Nov

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Naomi Klein, the ‘shock doctrine’ & Whitlam’s dismissal


FILE: Baroness Thatcher Dies Aged 87 - Thatcher On The World Stage

In the latest post at her personal blog, An Integral State, Left Flank’s ELIZABETH HUMPHRYS challenges Naomi Klein’s celebrated “shock doctrine” thesis of neoliberal transformation by looking at the Whitlam dismissal and the Fraser government’s failure to drive through neoliberal reform. But despite these concurrent ‘shocks’ — the deepest economic crisis since the Great Depression […]

14 Sep


A federal ICAC? ‘Accountability’ & the decay of politics


[Graphic: Newcastle Herald]

It’s been enjoyable indeed to watch the humiliation of both sides of NSW politics on the ICAC witness stand. But, unlike Peter Hartcher in the Sydney Morning Herald — or the Greens, who have been pushing the idea for some time — I don’t think a federal ICAC would either solve the problem of “political […]

08 Sep

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The capitalist state, neoliberalism and industrial arbitration



Left Flank’s ELIZABETH HUMPHRYS has launched a new website for her own work, An Integral State: Notes on Marx & Gramsci. The latest post is her paper from the roundtable on Leo Panitch & Sam Gindin’s Deutscher Prize winning book The Making of Global Capitalism, at the Historical Materialism Australasia conference last weekend in Sydney. […]

11 Jun


Post-Budget: Just what the hell is Abbott up to?



In today’s Sydney Morning Herald, Economics Editor Ross Gittins portrays Tony Abbott as a political “chameleon” who went from being a soft “populist” before the election — backing Labor’s spending commitments, promising minimal cuts despite saying that the Budget deficit needed to be reversed, etc. — to “an inflexible ‘conviction politician’ who doesn’t seem much worried […]

01 Jun


The Left and Tony Abbott’s ‘inevitable downfall’


House of Representatives

GUEST POST BY SIMON COPLAND Eight months in and the Abbott government seems to already be at the point of no return. After the disaster of the budget, the government has hit a new low in polling — one that, given the political “skills” displayed, seems very difficult reverse. As I’ve predicted in the past, […]

18 May


Dazed & confused: The Left, Palmer & Budget 2014



We are very concerned about the risk that savings are falling too heavily on some families and young people trying to find work. —Jennifer Westacott, Chief Executive of the Business Council of Australia I don’t think even the colleagues realise the extent to which Tony has locked in a strategy from which he cannot turn […]

04 Dec


Abbott & the auto-unravelling of the Right


Grown-up government

For some time, this blog has insisted that an Abbott government — far from getting a smooth ride, even with a big parliamentary majority — would most likely face “crisis and volatility” at least as much as the ALP had over the last few years. By way of contrast, the rapid accumulation of problems for Abbott in […]

20 Nov


We need to talk about Indonesia


The not-so-special relationship

I suppose we’ll never know if when Kevin Rudd dropped the word “Konfrontasi” into the pre-election debate on Tony Abbott’s “turn back the boats” policy he was merely stirring up his Coalition opponents or whether he was directly aware of the depth of contempt Indonesian elites had towards the Coalition’s sabre-rattling. The term certainly had […]