Canberra Report: Today's Australia is a more prosperous one

29 May 2019

Today's Australia is a prosperous one. The Labor Party and the trade unionists that formed it can take much of the credit.

More particularly, they can claim credit for ensuring our wealth is more evenly and fairly shared.

Coal miners for example, enjoy good wages thanks to their capacity to bargain collectively and the leadership of their union representatives.

They are but one of many examples of the benefits of strong Labor representation.

Many of those same workers are now self-funded retirees or plan to be.

They've been astute enough to use their good earning years to build a nest egg for their years in retirement.

At local polling booths on election-day, local mine workers pushed one another out of the way to vote One Nation. Self-funded retirees did something similar.

Labor can't and shouldn't expect mine workers, who have worked hard to get ahead, to thank it for their comfortable financial circumstances.

What matters is whether Labors commitment to them remains strong. It does.

But Labor made big mistakes.

We did so in a number of ways.

I have space for just three examples.

First, Labors leadership seemed unwilling to clearly articulate its appreciation for the great wealth mining brings to our economy and the well-paid jobs it provides.

Second, while Labor took a necessary and light-touch climate change policy to the election, we left ourselves exposed to a scare campaign by announcing it without the capacity to fully explain its impacts.

If you leave yourself open to a scare campaign its what you can expect.

Third, when Labor said it would take from the rich and give to the poor, it failed to properly define who the rich are.

Did they only live in Sydney's Eastern Suburbs or Melbourne's Toorak?

Or did the savings measures extend to the miners of the Hunter and Central Queensland?

Voters were left in doubt, so many they took the safe option.

In some regions the safe option became a Prime Minister who stood for nothing except a promise to change nothing.

In our mining regions many couldn't stomach the idea of voting for the Nats (who also went backwards) so they parked their protest vote with One Nation, a political party they know cant win and therefore, can do limited harm.

Labors many positive policies were overwhelmed by other distractions.

For many, we looked too different, too complex and too risky.

Labor will be back; hopefully smarter for the experience.

Well remain committed to the same ideals and objectives we've always held; a more prosperous society in which every individual has an opportunity to participate and thrive.


Labor made a number of local pre-election promises which sadly, I will now not have the chance to deliver.

A local Headspace, a vineyard cycleway and an aqua-playground splash pad for our local pool were amongst them.

I lament too our schools and hospitals wont receive the funding boost we offered and our cancer and seniors dental programs have now disappeared due to the election outcome.

Readers can be assured I'll keep fighting for our fair share.

I thank all those who supported me on May 18, I'm grateful for the opportunity to serve.