Saturday, 28 October 2017

Strange Days Indeed

Pic courtesy ABC news

Thirty-two Australian Federal Police raided the AWU offices this week investigating something that is alleged to have happened over a decade ago.

The investigation is looking at donations from unions, on the basis that members may have not been consulted. There seems to be a notion that the union movement has no business in seeking to influence Australian politics.

Strange indeed, considering that the Labor party has its roots in the 1891 shearer’s strike, and that you would have to living under a rock not to understand that history.

We’re being asked to believe that there is no connection between this raid and the declining stocks of the Coalition. The tactic of smearing your political opponents because you’re afraid of the power and influence of their organised supporters is as old as Methuselah.

The influence of the big end of town, characterised (for example) by the big banks, seems to be quarantined against any form of public inquiry, despite the fact that they have been caught out frequently in fraudulent behaviour, and consistently rip off their customers.

But they’re neat and clean and well-advised, these bankers, and wear ties to work, not like those sweaty unionists in their Hi-Viz vests.

Royal Commissions, on the other hand, are all the go when it comes to those nasty unionists.

There’s fear and trepidation in the ranks of the Right that progressive organisations like Getup might comprise a threat to their inviolable right to rule. How dare a bunch of individuals get active enough to seek to influence the status quo?

Members of the coalition have historically had a more charitable (and dismissive) view of Getup when it suited them. That has changed because Getup are effective.

The delicious irony in all of this, of course, is that the whole episode has landed Cash in trouble because of the leaking from her office. Now we’re expected to believe that the adviser did this without the tacit approval of his minister. What are the odds that he’d still be in his job without the Buzzfeed story?

There is something deeply sinister about a political party using the apparatus of the state to throw mud at its opponents. Michaela cash has been taking lessons from Old Mate Putin.

Hugh White - Without America

Hugh White is always provocative, and doesn't pull any punches when it comes to criticising current defence policy. In 1995, he was appo...