Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Continued collapse in NSW Labor support

The latest Newspoll released in the Australian made interesting reading. On these numbers, Labor could be reduced to as low as 24 seats in the NSW Legislative Assembly.919307-nsw-newspoll-30-06-2010 2

The difficulty this creates from the viewpoint of those seeking change lies in the fact that such an unbalanced possible result actually  makes it harder to get real change.

This may sound paradoxical. Surely a coalition Government with such a large majority would have a mandate to bring about change? Well, yes and no.

Yes, because the Government to do things. No, because the incentive to do things is reduced. From a New England viewpoint, there may be less incentive for the opposition to focus on New England issues, including the need for fundamental constitutional change.

This is not a party political comment, nor is it meant to be negative. It's just that if, as an increasing number of New Englanders appear to want, we are to get another vote on self-government, then we need support at candidate and party level. This may be more difficult to achieve.

It is quite a while since I looked at the detail of coalition policy statements from a broader New England perspective. I will try to do an assessment over the next few weeks.  


Greg said...

Jim, a change of government may also result in simmering resentments in New England going off the boil - at least until the realization hits that a change of government changes none of the fundamental causes of that resentment in the first place.

Do you think that there is a need to get self-government on the agenda while there is such an overwhelming mood for change in the electorate?

Jim Belshaw said...

Probably more so, Greg, although it's harder. I say this for two reasons, having just posted the next chapter of my grandfather's life.

First, while the movement has waxed and waned,up until 1967 each wax helped build to the next one following the wane.

In retrospect, if the movement had not decided to go the direct political route after 67 thus splitting its support while exhausting itself, there would have been another rebirth much earlier.

Secondly, even in the wane, the fact of the agitation forced people to continue focusing on New England. So action to continue to build the infrastructure continued.

In the absence of new state agitation, there is going to be nothing that I know of to force the new Government to look at New England in any coordinated way. Business will go on as per usual.

Mark said...

Exactly Jim. Business as usual is the theme. Mr O'Farrell might get a few more emails from me over the next few months yet something tells me what you have already stated.

New state agitation goes directly to the point.

Locally, interesting to hear what Newcastle Lord Mayor said about the F3 freeway fiasco findings: People from the area being treated like second class citizens. People like this need to be tapped on the shoulder to remind them of '67 and the lack of any real change of Macquarie St attitude.

Jim Belshaw said...

Mark, one of the things that I would like to do over the coming weeks apart from catching up on the organisational stuff that we have underway is to continue preparing material that we can use to force people to focus on New England issues.

By this, I am not referring just to new state material, but to broader social, cultural and economic development material.

If you look at your own work experience, you will see how fragmented things are. So we then have a double pronged approach. One prong is agitation for self government and another referendum. The second prong is agitation to get action on key collective needs. The two reinforce.