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"...public opinion deserves to be respected as well as despised" G.W.F. Hegel, 'Philosophy of Right'

SA: Labor renewal? « Previous | |Next »
February 12, 2011

For those for whom South Australia is not on their radar, the political news from the last couple of weeks is that Kevin Foley, has been forced to step down by his own Right faction after nine years as treasurer and deputy premier. He remains in cabinet with lesser portfolios (he retains his defence portfolio - and takes on Police, Emergency Services and Motor Sport). Foley plans to leave Parliament before the next election. There has been a minor cabinet reshuffle.

The upshot? The significance?

South Australia Labor is more in the grip of the Labor right than ever before; in the grip of Senator Don Farrell and Peter Malinauskas, the young union boss Peter Malinauskas, of the Shop Distributive and Allied Employees Association--the powerful "shoppies" union or SDA. That means no major policy changes for years in most areas of significance for South Australia.

Rann of course is spinning this hegemony of the Right as representing a "reinvigorated and renewed" front bench". For those who speak truth to power, the Left was excluded from the "revitalisation", and SA Labor is now akin to the DLP of yesteryear. Rann himself is next for the chopping block as Rann Labor is on the nose in the electorate after the hard line neo-liberal budget and the politics of austerity.

In When consensus gives way to the Right Dean Jaensch says:

The party has fractured, with the Left faction and the Left unions bitter about some Rann policies. The Right wing has made it clear that every effort will be made to keep Jay Weatherill, who outpolls everyone else in the public opinion polls, from climbing the ladder in the ministry, simply because he is from the Left.

The left is pretty weak in SA. It's not clear what they stand for--or what "the left" means these days. Thy mumble something about Don Dunstan but they little clear idea of what social democracy means in a globalized neo-liberal world.

| Posted by Gary Sauer-Thompson at 8:36 PM | | Comments (6)


Foley cannot go fast enough. He was a bully boy who threw his weight around too often.

The Catholic Right rule SA Labor.

You can see where its going . Back to the nineties and a monotonous internecine scrapping over what Don Dunstan scathingly referred to as, "the spoils of defeat". Living at Bowden in Adelaide, and knowing my local MP personally, my mother being recruited as a union rep back in the seventies, his line to me some time ago was the "renewal/ new blood" line, as far back as when they were getting rid of Ralph Clark, Sawford, Delaine and others.
It's all very Sussex Street and highly unpromising.

Comparing the 2010 election results with that of this poll the glaringly standout factoids are:

-Libs have stayed pretty static [44% support at the election, 45% now according to the poll]

-'Others' [FF/ADs/Inds etc] are down a couple of % combined.

-ALP has lost ground by about 6% [election 37% to 31% now]

-Greens are UP by 6%
[election 8% to 14% now].

Seems to me to be good news for the Greens and that as such that factoid ought to be a major topic of discussion in the media and around the blogs.

I don't think S.A factors too much in the scheme of things unless you live there. Its more like the retarded relative you only see once a year at xmas and he tells you the same joke. But he does love new underpants.

Good Luck with the new ones.

they are not so new. They often sound like the 1950s.

yep, Labor's descent to the political doldrums continues almost a year after the election in spite of all the talk about jobs and prosperity from the Labor Right.

They are just like Sussex Street in NSW, but far more religion orientated--given the conservative Catholic leadership. They have strong prurient attitudes to sex, teenage sexuality and adult themes in films and computer games and they have no time for the civil libertarians. The SA Labor Right has consistently opposed an R18+ classification for video games for over a decade.

The State Government is once again allowing controversial explorer Marathon Resources into the Arkaroola Wilderness Sanctuary to drill for uranium, even though:

(1) Marathon Resources has a history of environmental destruction
(2) an overwhelming majority in SA say mining should be banned in the region.

So the northern Flinders Ranges---Arkaroola Wilderness Sanctuary----becomes a battleground.

The Labor Right in SA---(Australian Workers Union,Shop Distributive and Allied Employees Association etc) has no time for the Greens. They are the enemy. So much for environmental protection. The Labor Right want SA to become the uranium state. To hell with eco-tourism business. That's cottage industry stuff.

Rann's polling is in free fall----its down to 31 per cent and its steady downward slide ---he's toast. They won't win in 2014 with Rann as leader. They know it.