Can Someone Explain Australia? (The Election that is, not the rest of it ;-)

In tips here:

h/t Another Ian who said (in a comment to Larry):

That view has gone “a over t” in the Oz election

Turnbull reminds me of the pilot in Len Dightion’s “Bomber” trying to do a copybook spin recovery in a Lancaster over Berlin with half a wing shot off.

We have a link to Jo Nova here:

Which I’ve read, and some of the comments, and, well, I’m baffled.

While I can sort out some of the ‘Stralian lingo, and understand that “Liberal” is inverted from the USA sense in the FBE (Former British Empire) due to them keeping the Classical Liberal meaning (like USA Libertarian, sort of) while we had it perverted into “No I’m not a Progressive!” after W.W.II and the War Between The Socialisms caused Progressive to not look so good…

I don’t know how you tell a Lib from a Lab from a LIB-NAT from an ALP from a … and comments just make it worse adding things like CFA and TWU a ALA and {CTU, CFMEU}… why would you want to Shorten a Turnball (and why Turnbull unless it’s running at you) and who’s Hawke and is he Keane on Diaz? I do know you can tell a Conservative, but you can’t tell ’em much.

Frankly, I can understand why they would just pack up and take the weekend off. (It is the 4th of July, afterall… and a great time to party… When did y’all become a State, anyway?
I must of missed it…)

But really, there’s no clue who is going to run the government and everyone goes to the beach? OK…

I won’t even begin to ask what a “preference” is and why they are handed out by anyone other than whatever Greedy Evil Bastard wins the race like we do in the rest of the FBE… Then again, over here, being Xenophonobic is an insult, not a candidate, so maybe I’ve missed something important.

So please, if anyone can give me the Crib Notes version in simple ‘Merican, I’d appreciated it. Maybe “Good Guys winning by a nose, Bad Guys trying to bribe Folks-They-Hate to make a government”… or “‘Ey, mate, itsh Satrurday ‘ere and w’ve a bit ‘o Ale to goners gets s’more… so don’ ashk ’till Monday… or get us a case at th’ bar?! Umph?”

For me, now, from here, it just looks a mess with no clue who’s going to win or what a win would mean anyway… I’m sure that can’t be the true state of affairs…

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About E.M.Smith

A technical managerial sort interested in things from Stonehenge to computer science. My present "hot buttons' are the mythology of Climate Change and ancient metrology; but things change...
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37 Responses to Can Someone Explain Australia? (The Election that is, not the rest of it ;-)

  1. Another Ian says:


    Tony from Oz links to an explanation of the Australian electoral system he did for PAPundits in one of those recent Jo Nova threads.

    I don’t have it just now

  2. Jack says:

    Lib is the Liberal Party which started in the late 1940’s. It was an amalgamation of small parties, so it has always had a broad spectrum of beliefs but the basics are that people can manage for themselves.
    However, some wealthy Liberals have the usual guilt complex and also flakily believe they can only be modern by adopting socialist poses. They are called the wets in the Liberals. The conservative side is called the drys (economically speaking).
    The current Prime Minister, Turnbull, is a socialist masquerading as a Liberal but he has a lot of money. He white anted the previous Prime Minister at every opportunity. He had previously led the Liberals in opposition and ran them into the ground until his climate crap finally brought things to a head and they had a leadership spill in which he was defeated. The white anting begain immediately.
    His successor ran brilliant campaigns, pulled the party up and finally won government.
    The left wing media invented stories about his successor or played up really minor things as if they were international catastrophes. They diminished major successes, always assisting Turnbull to recover the leadership.
    So much so, that Turnbull convinced enough MP’s with short memories that he, Turnbull, would be a better Prime Minister, with the media cheering him and them on. The hypocrisy is so high, when Turnbull says a similar thing the the previous Prime Minister, he is or was praised, instead of being castigated.
    So, the Nats( Nationals) are in coalition with the Liberals at a federal level.They are mainly a regional based party. They put the brakes firmly on Turnbull forcing him to sign an agreement before continuing in coalition. Turnbull being Turnbull, immediately tried to slime around it.

    In Queensland, the Liberal Party was the minor party compared to the Nationals. But the Liberals would do anything to be the major party including conspiring to defeat the Nationals in seats, so the Nationals realized they had to merge to stop the sniping. So they are called the LNP.

    The major opposing party in Australia is the Labs, Labor Party, owned and financed by the Unions. They contain people from communists to green activists trying to take over Labor from the inside to moderate unionists. Basically they are the socialist party and think they have invented a new economic paradigm called inclusive economics. That means, government keeps spending more and getting bigger and bigger and inclusive of special interest groups who get favored treatment, until one day all the spending and higher taxing suddenly returns a surplus and everyone lives in socialist splendour ever after.
    Talk about deluded.
    TWU and CFMEU are militant unions.
    TWU just tried to put all owner driver truckies out of business under the guise of safety.
    CFMEU has engaged in corruption at all levels, yet pull the strings of Labor and Greens by big donations. They have many official facing corruption charges.
    Of interest, one of the ex Labor Federal President( non political) was jailed for corruption.

    CFA, is the Country Fire Association. It is run and staffed by volunteers all through the state of Victoria. EVery state has similar organisations. They do mighty work when bushfires threaten.
    In Victoria, the Labor and staunch Union man, the Premier Daniel Andrews,supported the takeover of the CFA by the very militant Union of Firefighters, UFU. They doorknocked in firefighter uniforms with lies to assist Andrews and Labor to be elected.
    The CFA has fought tooth and nail to stop it happening because the rules are ridiculous.
    So it affected Labor’s vote in Victoria in the current election.

    ALA is a breakaway conservative party, Australian Liberty Alliance. Did not do very well in the election but it is a symptom of the splintering effect of Turnbull. His election strategist said, conservatives were not important in the election, only the centre counted. So Turnbull not only ignored them, he took every opportunity to denigrate them where he could by humiliating the previous Prime Minister. The previous Prime Minister to his great credit put his support behind the party and his own desires second.
    Even showing that humility only made conservatives respect him more and he would be greeted enthusiastically wherever he went. So Trunbull made sure to bury him in the campaign.
    Now Turnbull is grasping at straws wondering where all his wonderful socialist dreams disappeared.
    The real danger is that the Labor Party with it strong association with corruption will win power.
    The current leader was exposed as doing a deal that caused some mushroom workers to get less pay in return for a sizable donation directly into the union coffers.

  3. Larry Ledwick says:

    Sounds like Bacillus Corrupta and Bacillus Erroris de Rebus Oeconomicis have infected all the major industrialized governments thanks to the system being weakened by recurring attacks of diurnarius deceptione malignis

  4. Larry Ledwick says:

    Crap, I swear — that should have been
    Oeconomicis not Reconomicis I have no clue how that got typo’d (does firefox or word press do autocorrect?)

    [Reply: Donno… but I do! Fixed it for you ;-) -E.M.Smith ]

  5. andysaurus says:

    A pretty good primer Jack. I should have thought that ‘white anting’ needs explanation to our American cousins. We are blessed with termites in this country, colloquially known as white ants. They are renowned for eating things from the inside, leaving just a hollow shell. In England the equivalent term would be “under-mining”, but I prefer the A
    Australian because it adds the idea of doing it invisibly.

  6. andysaurus says:

    I forgot to add the further complication that the political party Labor spelled their name differently from the concept of work – Labour. I’m sure they didn’t do it ironically.

  7. u.k(us) says:

    They’re on their own, we’ve got enough problems.
    Plus they are like upside-down, not to mention the kangaroos, armadillos and whatever else habitates that evolutionilary forgotten island.

    But ya still gotta luv them :)
    (spell check is very mad at me btw).

  8. Another Ian says:

    The Labor Party slogan

    :Guaranteed to take “You” out of work

  9. Larry Ledwick says:

    Yes white anting left me scratching my head, makes sense now.

  10. Graeme No.3 says:

    Much as Jack says. Turnbull the PM (sorry, Prime Minister) ran a disastrous campaign. Starting a few months out he decided to re-write the laws on Superannuation savings retrospectively in order to grab more tax. He also talked at various times of other unpopular tax grabs but backed down. Things were “on the table” then “off the table” so often that it became a (sour) joke. Then he signalled the election date at least 3 months out giving the Opposition a free run for weeks. (We normally have a 5 week election period as everyone gets sick and tired of the politicians after that).
    He then fought? a poor 8 week campaign based on him turning up for photo opportunities with local candidates while pork barrelling (which didn’t help his claim of the need for budget restraint).

    He also showed his distaste for the conservative wing publicly “they have no where to go” (when voting). The result was that some conservatives switched to minor parties. He also didn’t make any attempt to explain why he had called the election – supposedly to curb union corruption esp. among those prominent in the Labor Party. His electioneering can only be described as lack lustre.

    The ALP or Labor leader – Bill Shorten – ran a traditional Labor campaign promising spending on any cause that seemed likely to get votes, with promises 10 times the Government’s lack of restraint. Very few thought he could win but wanted to ‘punish’ the Government.

    I would point out that the National Party – smaller conservative partner in the Coalition – increased their votes slightly and picked up one seat.

    Voting is compulsory (you have to turn up and place papers into the box, although not necessarily mark them). The lower house – the Representatives – has one voting system, the Senate another. In my electorate the lower house had 6 candidates and I had to number them 1 to 6 in order of preference. If my first choice didn’t get enough votes then he would be eliminated and ‘his vote’ would go to the one marked 2. By eliminating candidates until there are only 2 you supposedly get the one least disliked elected.
    The Senate paper has 64 candidates arranged in party groups. You could vote “above the line”
    (like the majority) by writing 1 to 6 in the designated party boxes or you could vote “below the line” by choosing at least 12 candidates, thus you could select whoever you thought best from any of them. In my case I started at 64 and worked my way up through those parties whom I disliked most, until the last 15-18 where I selected individuals. Few people are so anal esp. in the bigger States where the no. of candidates was more than double.
    This dog’s breakfast of voting was adopted by the major parties because too many minor candidates were getting the benefit of flow on preferences e.g. The Motoring Enthusiasts Party got a Senator in one State from 0.5% of the first preference votes (curiously he turned out to be one of the better Senators).
    The Lib Dems – Liberal Democrats – are libertarian in favour of gun ownership, lower taxes and smaller government. Xenophon is a senator from South Australia who is in favour of anything that gets votes. Thus he ran strongly on industry protection (tariffs) and greenish measures. He ws the big winner with at least 2 other Senators and one house of Rep. joining him in the new parliament.
    (The lower house rep. was my electorate where the arrogant Liberal ran out of friends and allies. It takes a certain amount of ability to turn a 62.3% vote into a clear loss in less than 3 years).
    Hawke is a former Labor PM (1982-1991) who was quite effective and popular. Howard was the Liberal PM in the Coalition with the Nationals (1996-2007) and was effective. Rudd was useless as PM until knifed by Shorten who installed Julia Gillard as PM (2010-2013) until she in turn was knifed by Shorten who relaced her with Rudd, who duly lost the election by a landslide, but one smaller than she would have caused. Shorten is the lead Union man and the Unions ‘own’ the party.
    Abbott was Turnbull’s successor after his disastrous stint as Leader of the Opposition and wa PM from 2013 to 2015 until knifed by Turnbull. He might yet become leader of the Liberals again.
    I wonder why you are confused.
    So are we, and we have to put up with them.

  11. Larry Ledwick says:

    Thanks !
    Looks like we are all getting smothered under the same blanket, only the local names change, but the same twisted politics have infected them all.

    I suspect it is because the developed world has been too peaceful for the last 50 years. It’s been 27 years since the Berlin wall came down and the western developed democracies faced an existential threat that almost everyone took seriously in one way or another.

    As a result we have had a generation or two of politicians who have had no real earth shaking problems to solve and had to make up pretend threats to motivate the public and distract them from the appalling quality of folks who tend to want to run for political office.

    We would be much better served if the only folks who could be elected to political office had to the dragged kicking and screaming into their offices, rather than wanting the job I think.

    In a back handed way you made me feel better, as the U.S. is not alone in being totally devoid of sane and responsible politicians.

  12. Oliver K. Manuel says:

    I do not understand Australian politics, but from my own experiences I conclude that Western society is deeply troubled by recent, unambiguous evidence:

    1. Politicians use government science to deceive and control the public
    2. Science has also been used to separate humanity from reality (God)

    I would like to find a way to use my talk at the London GeoEthics Conference to show that the conflict between government science and religion is entirely imaginary.

    That message would benefit society, but it may be beyond my ability to communicate.

  13. Oliver K. Manuel says:

    This is the message I sent earlier today to Dr. Reid Tracy, CEO
    Hay House Publishers

    Dear Reid,

    Thank you for the reminder of Wayne Dyer’s positive impact on humanity.

    Please encourage attendance at the London GeoEthics Conference on 8-9 Sept 2016.

    Helpful suggestions would be appreciated for successfully communicating the error in Dr. Carl von Weizsacker’s nuclear binding energy equation (See Figures 3,4),

    Click to access Solar_Energy_Earth_Climate.pdf

    that isolated the scientific community from Reality (God) by hiding the powerful source of energy that

    1. Birthed the entire solar system 5 Ga ago;
    2. Sustained life’s origin and evolution on earth after ~3.8 Ga ago;
    3. Destroyed Hiroshima and Nagasaki on 6 and 9 Aug 1945;
    4 . Still sustains every atom, life and planet in the solar system today; and
    5. Now fills the heavens with mysterious and powerful explosions:

    Click to access 534610a.pdf

    This is an outline of the message from my research mentor (Paul Kazuo Kuroda) that I am inadequate to successfully communicate at the GeoEthics Conference in London.

    With kind regards,
    Oliver Manuel
    Former NASA Principal
    Investigator for Apollo

  14. p.g.sharrow says:

    @ omanuel: Oliver, men of great stature in the foundation of modern science were strong believers in a supreme deity that managed the flow of human advancement. A belief as old as the human race. It is unfortunate that those that lust after power and wealth use this human inclination to create belief systems to manipulate groups of people for their personal gain at the expense of everyone else.
    Organized religions are tools for Great Mischief like all political organizations. A thing that we must guard against, That does not mean that a belief in the existence of GOD is a bad thing. It means that Evil men use their “Cults of Believers” or “Fans” for evil purposes.
    GOD or That Which Is, is not good or evil, It just is. It is the Soul of the Universe. An EMF representation of all that is. Good or Evil are creations of men in their treatment of other beings. You can not commit a sin against GOD. You can only commit a sin against other beings. Just like you can not commit a sin against the Earth. IT Does Not care!
    People Do care about how they are treated and they are a part of this collective soul.
    There are those among us that sense this soul of the Universe because We are a part of it. This psychic sense is a fact. There are even government agencies that try to utilize this.
    Those in science that that seem to tap into knowledge that should be beyond them have had a glimpse into the total of knowledge of humanity past, present,future. The dimension of time is not entirely one way, there are reflections of events in both directions. There are people that can sense these reflections but most learn to tune out. A very few try to understand what they perceive and report it to others. Generally to great derision from their peers. But the fact is the greatest scientific minds in the last 500 years believed in the existence of GOD and a Guiding hand in their own lives as well…pg

  15. gallopingcamel says:

    Daft I call it!

  16. p.g.sharrow says:

    gallopingcamel says:
    4 July 2016 at 4:22 am “Daft I call it!”

    Interesting, The Good Sisters of Our Lady of Fatima Elementary School said the same thing to me when I was 8 years old. They also said that the Pope spoke directly with God, or maybe FOR God!
    They also believed that torture was a good thing to use to save my soul. After 2 years They gave up.
    Cult believers are all the same…pg

  17. Richard Hill says:

    EM.. The basic problem is the concept of K-12 education, that we got from the USA.
    It means that 16 and over kids, mainly boys, who cannot stomach classroom education, are classed as failures.
    A carpenter’s son said beware of the scribes and pharisees. Is that not lawyers and teachers?
    That is who runs our country. There is unmerited respect for educational qualifications.

  18. Graeme 3 explained the present political situation but one has to put everything into context and history. Australia was settled by Europeans in 1788. Coal was discovered at Newcastle NSW in 1791 and by the end of the 18th century 4000 tpa were being exported. Coal is still one of the big export items. The discovery of gold first in NSW in 1851, a few years after the California gold rush, followed in the same year in Victoria, then shortly after in Tasmania and Queensland and later in Western Australia brought in a huge number of migrants and a start of large scale industry plus big changes to agriculture. By federation in 1901 Australia (and New Zealand) had the highest GNP/capita in the world. Australia has been a trading nation exporting mining products, processed (eg aluminium, bauxite, copper products, rutile, iron & steel) & semi-processed minerals, and a large variety of agricultural products (such as wool, leather, wheat, cotton, fruit, sugar, and even Champagne to France). And imported manufactured goods. At federation in 1901 parliamentarians divided into free-trade & protectionists. The Australian Labor party developed from protectionists and a labor union members (who wanted shorter working week -8hr day, more money, and job rights). Labor were responsible for the White Australia policy which wanted to excluded Chinese who had come in and were still coming in to work on the gold fields and in agriculture. After the WW1 and in the depression in the 1930’s the Labor leaders were influenced by the Communists in Russia. & the socialists in UK. After WW2 Australia had again a surge of migrants who were displaced during the war and were fleeing the communists in Eastern Europe. Conservatives were worried about the communist advance in Asian and took part in wars in Korea, Malaysia, Vietnam and more recently in East Timor.
    Australia was very hurt by Britain’s move into the EU. Since however, they have developed free trade agreements with China, Japan, Korea, Thailand and Singapore. The Labor party (particularly the unions) and Greens do not like free trade and are strongly influenced by socialist dogma. The conservatives who have been Liberal-national party supporters do not like the socialist agenda of progressives in the coalition and deplore the communists in labor and the greens. The present election and the previous one was about the dissatisfaction of the generally conservative population with the political leanings to socialism and anti-democracy as it seems is occurring in other countries.

  19. omanuel says:

    Nothing better illustrates the absurdity of modern “consensus science” than the US Department of Energy and the US Secretary of Energy acquising in the use of Dr. Carl von Weizsacker’s nuclear binding energy equation – a thermodynamic path function- to define nuclear energy – a thermodynamic state function.

  20. Another Ian says:


    Some more from a site that is apt to call a spade a bloody big shovel

    Abbot was the one knifed but the only thing that got Turnbull at least near to a draw was what ABBOT PUT IN PLACE (IMO)

  21. Another Ian says:


    Put it this way on the assessment of Turnbull and his knife job on Abbott.

    When I heard of that coup there was one of those mental flakes of rust niggling that I should remember something relevant

    When it revealed it was Kalil Gibran’s “Thoughts and Meditations” chapter “The Silver Plated Turd”
    (check a photo)

    Or a more roughly track to explain the reaction

    Fascinating Aida. rhyming slang, Jeremy Hunt, act, = idiomatic expression

  22. Another Ian says:


    And Turnbull is a Goldman Sachs man – where ever that leads

  23. E.M.Smith says:

    Well then, that certainly makes it all right as rain then, not a doubt at all whats up…


    For the first time in decades I’m not grumbling about the USA “2 Party System” keeping minor parties out of power nor our fixed election term letting mistakes have power too long…. Oh, though being about a year into our 2 or 3 year election cycle, the idea of an 8 week election sounds like a heavenly dream… we seem to be perpetually subject to campaigns…

  24. Sandy McClintock says:

    The Australian electoral system is COMPULSORY. You will get fined if you do not vote. The upper house voting form is a yard wide with so many names that it takes 10 minutes just to read it, let alone mark your favourites starting with a 1 for the top person. 2 for your second ‘preference’ and so on.

    There is a lottery for the placement of names on the voting form. i.e. placement is randomized.
    There is a bad consequence…
    The person or party that scores the ‘poll’ position (top left of the form) gets the vote from those that are forced to vote, but just want to get out of the booth fast. We call this the Donkey Vote.
    Effectively it favours the party lucky enough to score the top left position on the form.
    Try this to get a feel ;)

  25. Another Ian says:


    Try this

    Now the source wouldn’t be the most trustworthy but if Turnbull did go that way (after the angst he’s already caused) it would rate as a brain fart that would register about 7 on the Richter scale IMO

  26. E.M.Smith says:

    @Another Ian:

    So he can just keep running elections until the result is too his liking? How odd…

    Interesting dynamic with One Nation. Leaving me to wonder about the negative space… why millions of muslims are being deliberately moved into western (formerly Christian) nation, by whom, and who benefits by it?

  27. philjourdan says:

    Like EM, I had somewhat the same questions (although I had been exposed to more of the way the elections go from reading Jo Nova frequently). But when you break it all down, one thing comes through that is universal. Neglect your base and you are going down.

    The wonder is why the idiots keep making that mistake.

  28. Another Ian says:


    “So he can just keep running elections until the result is too his liking? How odd…”

    Not quite.

    If he squeaks in he could attempt another go to try and improve the numbers. Risky on a couple of counts as he would have to convince the Govenor General to let it proceed – imo there wouldn’t be a sufficient reason in this case. And the voting population may well show their dis-approval of the idea. So either way unlikely to get another go after that.

    More on the govenor general

    For a pivotal role check out Sir John Kerr vs Gough Whitlam

  29. omanuel says:

    I personally suspect an element of racism and manipulation of the masses in world events, as did W.E.B. Du Bois: See “Pro-Japanese Utterances of W.E.B. Du Bois” here:

  30. Graeme No.3 says:

    To clarify:
    The PM selects the Governor General (known as the GG).
    Should the PM start behaving oddly, e.g. donning a cocked hat and announcing he is going to invade the South Island of NZ, then the GG sacks him and tell the Queen (more correctly her Secretary) next morning in the UK.
    Should the GG start behaving oddly, e.g. donning a cocked hat and announcing he is going to invade the South Island of NZ, then the PM contacts the Queen and she sacks the GG.
    Should King Charles (not likely the Queen) start behaving oddly, e.g. donning a cocked hat and announcing he is going to invade the South Island of NZ, he is rushed off to his farm Highgate where he is secluded owing to grave illness and Prince William takes over as Regent.
    Checks and Balances.
    Malcolm Turnbull led the Republic movement and forced the public to vote at a referendum between the above system and one where the PM both appointed and sacked the GG. Despite a majority being in favour of a Republic a majority in all States rejected the plan.

  31. Another Ian says:


    A scenario where the GG gets involved is if there is a “hung parlament” where neither side has the numbers to form a government and a fresh election is called – as could happen this time.

  32. Richard Hill says:

    EM re. your question about Muslims moving to western nations.
    Historically it was advised (by Muslim clerics) that good Muslims in areas where Muslim law was not the ascendant law should emigrate to Muslim areas.
    So, the current migration is un-islamic by that standard.

  33. E.M.Smith says:


    While I still don’t have a full grasp of the Australian System, I think there is enough info and pointers here for me to work it out. The key bit seems to be how hung, and nearly hung, parliaments get handled, and this is one of them, then a bunch of interparty intriguing derived from it.

    @Richard Hill: Interesting point.

    It looks to me like a deliberate attempt to swamp western values and shift elections.

  34. Larry Ledwick says:

    The western democracies have one feature in common which dominates their behavior. They presume and are designed around an assumption that a majority of the elected officials will act in good faith and at least give token conformance with the intent of laws. If they do not they will at least respond to strong public pressure.

    Over the last few years we have seen a decided twist in that, as elected officials figured out that once they stacked the deck with a large enough plurality of like minded folks, they could neuter the checks and balances of parliamentary or congressional systems by bringing everything to a grinding halt, or so confusing the issues with outright lies that they were then able to simply ignore the public will.

    Until there is a strong enough impulse to throw the bums out, once that happens, it becomes a hopeless corrupt oligarchy which only the insiders can control ( well most of the time they can control it ).

  35. Gail Combs says:

    Larry Ledwick, And that is the reason for the Second Amendment.

    As Thomas Jefferson put it, “When governments fear the people, there is liberty. When the people fear the government, there is tyranny.” Governments have no fear of an unarmed people.

    George Mason, the co-author of the 2nd Amendment during the Virginia Convention to ratify the Constitution, 1788 made it clear what the militia is.
    ” I ask Sir. what is a militia? It is the whole people. To disarm the people is the best and most effective way to enslave them”.

    And of course we now have another attempt by the corrupt oligarchy to disarm the American people using a ‘secret list’

    Capital Switch board to voice your opinion to your Congress Critters on these ‘Down the Rabbit Hole’ events:

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