Friday 29th of September 2023

archive's blog

Blatant Disregard for Tribal Allegiances ()

Just as Harry writes about Election 2004 seeming trivial, Finals Footy has descended on Melbourne, along with the political circus. Suddenly we have an abundance of cheesy photo opportunities for party leaders to rip out their hearts, sell their souls and don rival football team attire. It

Review 280: Re 'Cloud of Kyogle' (emails of the week, 24/09/04) (Tom Kelsey)

What a humble, yet profound contribution, the ilks of Cloud et al are making to the upsurge of genuine concern for the future of this nation! Let the party continue to go wild and let's continue to spell out some of Johnnies policies; 1.It's okay to tell lies because they're only invented, 2. Where there's a problem, apportion blame elsewhere, thereby creating a solution, and 3 It's okay for rodents to apply for the position of Prime Minister - small, contemptible and destructive are some of the required attributes . STILL NOT HAPPY JOHN

Time to get busy ()

Throughout NHJ, we learn of how Australia's democracy is being trashed. It's five to midnight and it's time to get busy.

I remember during the 2001 election feeling cheated because it seemed that as a nation we never got to discuss the vast majority of very important issues. There was never that intelligent debate and analysis we longed for because the discussion was shut down by Tampa. Nothing else mattered.

This time around, there's no Tampa equivalent and to me it seems like a big void. I'm finding the lack of substance in the campaign really disturbing. It seems more trivial and trite than ever. We can't blame Tampa. What's the problem then?

It's everything that's in the book. Both large parties don't want to discuss the real issues. The media would meanwhile prefer to score the game than dig deep into the big opportunities and threats ahead of us.

The only way we are going to get the issues that really matter to us as citizens is by activism and non-tradi

electoral act and the privacy act and what the Howard government is probably planning to do if re-elected (Kendall Lovett)

Before going out on the hustings, I gather the Howard government announced a review of the Privacy Act. This followed the Australian Bankers Association

Oh, but I only voted for low interest rates... ()

...not a pre-emptive push into Tehran.

MICHAEL WARE: Well, there's a 'takeback light' version, under way right now. They're [Coalition of the Willing] actually attempting to take small cities back from the insurgents. We saw it begin in Najaf where they ousted the Shia militants and then immediately supplanted an Iraqi administration.

Well that was a Shia area. Their first foray into the Sunni, the hardline heartland, came with the town of Sumarra which the Americans surrounded, the insurgents left, and an Iraqi administration was put in. It's with mixed results. We've just seen a missile strike in Sumarra in the early hours of this morning. We saw a US convoy or patrol ambushed in Sumarra, this retaken city, yesterday afternoon. It's a very difficult strategy, and listen, there is much talk about a massive offensive that is about to begin.

What we're seeing in these cities is now j

Word from the US ()

Hi All,

My sister lives in the US of A - currently in the midst of its own election fever. The Democratic camp is suffering from depression, with Kerry trailing desperately in the polls and the inconceivable idea of another four years of the corrupt and inept Bush administration leading the Empire fast becoming reality.

With two weeks left to go in the campaign over here, I can't help feeling the same kind of downheartedness the Democrats are going through. Having been in government for so long, the Howard government is so blatently rotting from the inside it is inconceivable that the country would voluntarily elect to put the rodent back on the throne... it should be an absolute cake walk, the ALP should be running amok here, and yet the polls have been tied for weeks and remain tied. What is going on??

I received this today from my sis - OK, its Michael Moore, and its all about America, but still, the sentiments stand...and are easily applied to our own situation over h

Now Downer has completely lost it too - LUNACY RUNNING RIOT in Howard's camp (Russell K Darroch)

See for the latest dangerous thinking from the Howard camp:

Downer backs foreign pre-emptive strikes September 24, 2004 - 7:24PM

Foreign Minister Alexander Downer said it would be acceptable for another country to launch a pre-emptive strike on terrorist networks in Australia if Australia did not take action itself.

The Opposition immediately labelled Mr Downer's comments as lunacy.

But Mr Downer said countries were entitled to defend themselves.

Asked on Darwin radio if he would expect another country to take pre-emptive action on Australian soil, Mr Downer said: 'Absolutely, by the way, absolutely.' ...[continues]

What planet do these guys live on?

Talk to people, write your emails, call your friends, help those who need rides to vote ... everything and anything to get this mob of nutters out of government. They are REALLY dangerous!

Three ideas for better democracy (Sundance Bilson-Thompson)

I have been thinking about what would have to change to make Australia a more democratic place.

I have come up with three ideas, which I think we should all urge as many pollies as possible to adopt, with the goal of embarassing the Libs and ALP into adopting them as election issues.

They are ...1) Citizen initiated referenda...2) A bill of rights...and since JH seems to like the idea of weakening the senate, let's propose an alternative 3) Replace double-dissolution elections with a plebiscite on the issue acting as a double-dissolution trigger. Give direct control of contentious legislation to the people, instead of the pollies.

Hopefully if we can get these ideas into the mouths of people like Bob Brown, Andrew Bartlett and the like, JH and ML will be unable to ignore them and democracy, rather than just interest rates, will become an election issue. So start writing letters, everyone!

Now Howard has really lost it - more proof that this is a bribe based election on Howard's part (Russell Darroch)

If there was any doubt about the level of bribery in this election (which is the worst I've seen in 33 years in Australia) consider today's amazing announcement at,4057,10854269%255E36596,00.html which begins:

'PM commits $10m to Bulldogs September 23, 2004

THE Federal Government would contribute up to $10 million towards the upgrade of the home of Australian Football League team the Western Bulldogs in Melbourne's west, Prime Minister John Howard said today.

Mr Howard said the redevelopment of the Whitten Oval, in Footscray, would benefit the club and the local community.

The Victorian government will contribute $3 million and the AFL $3.5 million to the $20 million redevelopment, according to the Melbourne Age.

Councils in the area will chip in $2 million, while the football club will also contribute to the project.

'We're going to announce some funding of up to $10 million for the oval, for the refurbishment,' Mr How

105 reasons not to vote for little john howard (Hamish)

Tell us why little john should not be elected in the upcoming Australian election. Your reason will be tested for public opinion and if popular will rank in the 105 reasons.

Howards Medicare Views ()

John Samson reminds us of this titbit from The Australian (May 2, 2003) where Howard described the Medicare system as, 'A miserable, cruel fraud', 'A human nightmare', 'A total and complete failure' and ' A quagmire'.

Journalism's upside (Sylvie Rogers)

Dear Margo, I have just finished your book Not Happy John. You make a fine case for jouranlism's integrity and it was a pleasure to read such a detailed dissection of the Libs' aviodance tactics. It was very grounding. Since reading it, and maybe this is wishful thinking , but I feel that there is an added bite to journalists questioning of pollies. Maybe they read your book too?

A couple of observations to add to the pot. (Leo Smith)

Observation One. Reading through the other reviews I noticed that the critical ones are never specific. They refer vaguely to factual errors but remain cryptic as to which facts are in error and what the real facts are. C'mon! It's too easy to criticise and never elaborate. So to them, for the good of us all; for the good of Oz and Truth and God and Democracy and little children everywhere, tell us what the errors are.

I've been watching the US election and, from this distance, the partisan nature of that population seems even more obvious than here. I have to say, without the US example, my objection to partisanship amongst the constituency might otherwise be largely academic but now I can see the great lack of logic and tolerance for lies that partisanship allows. Democracy becomes a sport played above us and we are little more than biased spectators. The 'team' we barrack for becomes an end in itself and we are effectively locked out of the Democratic process, with no

The day beckons ()

I may have been away from NHJ for a week or two (busy election blogging at Counterspin for the Sydney Morning Herald and Age), but I'm still as involved as ever. And just as fired up.

It's wonderful to read all the energy of people around the country, many of whom have never been political in their lives. As we've said for months, this election is surely the time to change all that!

I'm reading many people at Counterspin who are frustrated with the mainstream media's reluctance to move away from the old-style, Big Party, he said/she said dynamic. Thank god for blogs, I say, especially during election campaigns.

For a selection of interesting and challenging 'alternative' viewpoints see Road to Surfdom, Backpages and Troppo Armadillo.

And maybe, just may

Melbourne Supporters of Brian Deegan (Michelle Wright)

Brian Deegan Melbourne Supporters Fundraising Film Night

Brian Deegan has earned the respect of many Australians with his strong and uncompromising pursuit of truth and accountability for Australia

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