Monday, April 2, 2012

Victoria's Supine Premier

IF FORM is any guide (and it usually is) most members of Victorian Premier Ted Baillieu’s team will today begin another working week with a blinkered determination to stay the course. Having examined their dismal polling and declined to field a candidate in the Niddrie by-election, a contest held on the very same day Queenslanders reflected the national mood and rid themselves of a Labor government, our local Liberals will take comfort in the fact that their own date with voters remains two years hence -- plenty of time, the optimists will say, to lock down Victorians’ respect and build on the government’s one-heart-attack majority in the lower house. Steady as she goes, they will add, assuring each other that the electorate appreciates what it sees as the dignity Team Ted has brought to government. Voters were disgusted by the Bracks/Brumby crews’ daily circuses, of government by press release and photo op, so there will be none of that tawdry and manipulative stuff under this government. That is, quite literally, the party line: ignore the static and it will go away.

There are a few smart Liberals in Victoria, and with any luck one or two might have noticed the Saturday Age’s breathless scoop aboutwind turbines and the purported network of Liberal influence that has seen the ridiculous and ugly towers banned from large swathes of the state. Why, they will wonder, is their government not making offence its best defence? Why does it allow itself to be smeared day after day by Labor-installed leakers in the bureaucracy and its enemies in the Fairfax press? Why does it never fire a shot in return?

The wind generator beat-up provides a wonderful opportunity to do just that – if only Team Ted had the wit to recognise it. Openly and loudly confront and denounce the Age for its dishonesty, that would be a good first step. A second would be to recognise that no Liberal government will get a fair shake, and certainly not by pleading cap in hand for a correction and retraction, which would not be noticed in any case.

Yet the government has its own tools – tools its aversion to playing a two-fisted game has rendered irrelevant.

How much government advertising does the Age carry? Quite a bit, so why not order an immediate review of cost and benefit? The government has its own web operations where jobs are advertised and applications filed, why not announce those will be used henceforth and exclusively? That should get someone’s attention at Fairfax World HQ, perhaps inspiring a sudden desire to install a new editor less inclined to indulge his youthful reporters’ green crusades and confected scandals.

And then Team Ted might attend to getting its own house in order. Ministers are impotent satellite’s of Baillieu’s office. Many lack their own in-office spinners, meaning that responses to critical stories must be processed through a centralised system. The result: Whenever the Age or ABC pushes the latest dubious scoop, the government’s response is very often “the minister was not available for comment”. One gathers Ted would rather be in undisputed control of a sinking ship than give his crew the freedom to defend themselves and their portfolios.

Someone needs to take the shackles off this government, roll up its sleeves and encourage it to throw a few punches. Dignity is all very well and good, but if best suits those yearning for a return to the Opposition side of the chamber.


  1. Totally agree, the spineless Niddre decision was the last straw for me and I quit the party, joined the IPA instead.

  2. Elizabeth (Lizzie) B.April 2, 2012 at 11:01 AM

    Ministers should always comment. But with few words, so they can't be twisted.

  3. You could be wasting your breath. They're probably subscribers.

  4. PhillipGeorge(c)2012April 2, 2012 at 1:51 PM

    I wasn't brave enough to say this a month ago but probably the single biggest and best act of any parliament in 2000 years was the Book of Common Prayer. Printed in the hundreds of millions it is the basis of society more than any other document outside of the Bible itself. It remains among the most printed books of all time.

    Conservatives are apoplectic with confusion as to what point in time to reference their avowed conservatism to. All points on the compass on any historian's time line being bloody awful in a mid day sun's full glare and with a microscopists introspections.

    To wit, one shouldn't give a pinch of cow excreta's concern to all the complaints that can be amassed. Humans are tarnished with their humanity - what more is there to speak of it. Truth is its own reward and men without chests are invariably men without histories; with all the good, the bad, and the ugly truths that it certainly contains.

    Your world has as its crucible the Words of Jesus Christ. Right wing, or left wing, conservative or liberal - without history there is no life in it.

    In the beginning was the Word.
    From quantum physics to microbiology to astrophysics nothing has detracted from the majesty and mystery of those words - nor ever shall.

    Know your history, get a anchor on life and just begin again..

    All reformations were personal.

    1. Bunyip has been very generous in allowing you to post your advertisement, Phillip. Like all born-agains, your arrogance in assuming you can just change the subject to your private thoughts about religion is the act of someone who can hear only his own voice. The difference between Bunyip's visitors and you is that they would not foist a religious sermon on the rest of us, even if urgently felt, unless invited.

    2. You're in the wrong place mate!
      They have other blogs for whatever it is that you are selling,but I am not sure what it is that you are selling,it appears shambolic

    3. Ted and his lot will get over the line next time round,what they will need to do is see how Campbell Newman succeeds up North and maybe follow suit!

    4. PhillipGeorge(c)2012April 2, 2012 at 4:51 PM

      Thanks Anonymous, but maybe its more diabolical than that. The Green religion/ progressiveness/ Gaytopia/ relativism/ is right now making you pay in hard currency for their religion - a particularly bizarre blend. From fertility rights to lesbians to windmills of the mind. At the same time multiculturalism implodes in a plethora of places.

      "World views" have a trajectory - and a launching point.

      I happily gone - any time. One or two deletes and I'll trouble you no more. cheers. better still just move a motion and have one single seconder. that's all it takes. infact if Gav formally seconds your motion? above I'm already long gone. cheerfully.

    5. Happy to have you around, Phil, if Bunyip has no objections. The more the merrier.

    6. Elizabeth (Lizzie) B.April 2, 2012 at 11:43 PM

      Phil, I don't mind your speculations at all. They get me thinking. For instance, 'men without chests are men without histories'. I like a man with a good chest, and hairy at that, in fact they are the only ones I take histories from and like to be enfolded towards.

      It is all in the mind of the reader, Phil, and you offer a lot of scope with linguistic flair. Keep on going, mate, the good Bunyip willling. It's easy to skip the boring bits.

  5. So far, I like Baillieu's approach. I want a government that quietly works away in the background. It makes a very appreciated change from the usual crap we all get through the mainstream media.

    1. Ivan, Ballieu and his ministers aren't working quietly in the background, they are sitting around doing nothing, just enjoying the fruits of office. A majority of one has given them the choice of working hard to dismantle Labors mess or sitting around doing nothing and hoping that they will get a bigger majority at the next election. I don't understand why they chose option two. It makes them appear to stand for nothing and have no agenda, but then again maybe that's how it is.

      If they had begun to dismantle Labors pile of crap at least they would have something to take to the next election however it seems that is not going to happen now. They had a great chance to get rid of the charter of human rights, Ted did nothing. He is either a Labor Manchurian candidate or he is just there for the ride, I can't decide which.

    2. How do you know they're not doing anything? I agree with you on the human rights charter, it was strange. At least they're starting to tackle some of the insane Green stuff and I hear they are going through various positions and departments cleaning up some of the post-fem, crazies and so called "sustainability" crowed. Only rumors so far. God knows that there are a few in the education department. I used to work for the state government. So, that opinion is based on my own experience.

      This government appears to be approaching change/reform very cautiously, most of us would like a faster pace but lets not forget who was there previously and the mess that was left.

      One thing I really liked was the change to or clean up of some of the inconsistencies in the firearms act. Something, which directly impacts me, being a gun loving, atheist, libertarian (I'm sure my IP address will now be tracked) No other government would have even touched it, but the Baillieu government did.

      That, at least, is my vote well spent.

  6. I'm with Ivan; - surely the vast majority are now a wake-up to Labor's nihilist spin - and heartily sick of it. I'm trusting Ted to deliver, in good time, ahead of the next election; - here's hoping.

  7. Yes it is a great relief not to have to view political twats in hard hats touting their latest corporate/public partnership swindle on the nightly news. However the velvet glove of Ted's government clearly needs a bit of boot behind it.

    Look Ted, just pull the finger out and get rid of all the wind turbines completely. Just pull them all down and burn them. And while you are at it why not recycle all the greenies, yartists and white abos in the fire as well.

  8. While we're being all gung ho and non-Baillieu, may I suggest to the Prof. that "numbers" be no longer indulged here? His efforts are designed to be vexatious and self-promoting. He has his own blog for that, but probably fears that nobody reads it.

  9. I think it's very poor form to peer over your neighbour's fence and criticise him for his chook feeding habits, or comment on the weeds in his vege garden, likewise I don't comment on the internal politics of other states.

    However, when those internal politics impact beyond the state borders, and bring mockery to that state in the eyes of your fellow countrymen, then it would be poor form not to comment.

    For example, if my neighbour with the poor animal husbandry and slovenly gardening habits was to go to the neighbourhood grocery store wearing nothing other than his underpants and wellington boots, it would be remiss of me not to have a quiet chat with him.

    What Victoria does with Ted, and what Ted does with Victoria is of no concern to me. However while Ted retains draconian groupthink policies which cause Victorians embarrassment when speaking in other states, then I would be a delinquent neighbour not to comment.

    Case in point: Last year the Q-Society brought the American anti-Jihad campaigner, Robert Spencer, to Australia for a speaking tour. I attended his presentation in Perth, but before he was able to deliver his speech, Vickie Janson of the Q-Society had to deliver a lengthy legal disclaimer to avoid prosecution in Victoria for having the audacity to speak truthfully. Even though the speech was being delivered in Perth (and other state capitals), the lengthy legal disclaimer was necessary as the Q-Society is incorporated in Victoria, and is therefore subject to Victoria’s draconian groupthink laws.

    As Ms. Janson is pleasing to both eye and ear, I didn’t feel too put out by this lengthy preamble, but someone should take Ted to the side and tell him that he doesn’t have to continue wearing the same underpants and wellington boots as his predecessor in office. If Ted does nothing else other than remove this enforced groupthink legislation in his first term, and its attendant embarrassment when Victorians are interstate, then Victoria would have rejoined the rest of Australia with regards to open and free speech.

    A video of this legal disclaimer can be found here -

    The Hesperian

  10. Regarding Mr. George's evangelising, and Number's dissembling, I say let them continue. Our esteemed Professor runs a very broad billabong, let all voices be heard I say.

    The Hesperian