Saturday Salon (Election07 edition)

OZ07An open thread where, at your weekend leisure, you can discuss anything you like.

You may, of course, wish to discuss the election! I’m writing this ahead of time, on Wednesday night before I head down to Sydney tomorrow. To me, it feels like the election is already over, because I voted last week, and I think it’s been in the bag since the Kevin07 election launch. Thanks to everyone for all the feedback and camaraderie and bloggy goodness during the campaign and I wish you all happy voting and a lovely election! Don’t forget, if you’re in Sydney, you might like to look in at the LP/NM/2SER election night party – details in this post.

sydney voting

Posted in announcements, federal election '07, life
77 comments on “Saturday Salon (Election07 edition)
  1. Anna Winter says:


    And now, to bed.

  2. Graham Bell says:

    Mark and Everyone;

    Several times over the past few months, I have said that I expected all sorts of dirty tricks and egregious abuse of power to be used to hinder, delay, postpone or even stop the federal election. Now, with only 8 hours to go [in Queensland anyway] until the opening the polls, I am truly amazed that a federal election looks iminent. That it has been allowed to get this far is completely out of character for a regime that has stomped all over our traditional rights, duties and protections, that has perverted the parliament, the public service, academia, the armed forces and the judiciary against the interests of the citizenry of Australia.

    I did say that if a federal election did actually happen then I would eat Humble Pie. Well, folks, the table is set and the pie is in the oven …. and after the polls are closed, I shall eat it with gusto. My analysis was wrong this time.

    Can’t help wondering though, if wiser heads had prevailed and the hazards of a blatant seizure of power were seen in time …. or if a cunning way has been worked out to cook the books whilst keeping the mug voters happy. 🙂

  3. David says:

    ohhh… that was serious.

  4. Futt Bucker says:

    I’M FREAKING OUT! Surely there is no way Howard can get back in after all this? If he does get back in I think I’m going to have to boycott politics for the next three years, just won’t be able to handle it.

    Although Milne and Farr both said on Sky’s The last Word tonight that they expect Labor to win and just a case of how much by.

  5. mbahnisch says:

    This is a momentous day, comrades!

    I’m casting my mind back to the beginning of the Howard era. My best friend P and I – who very early in our friendship found ourselves in Sydney airport watching Paul Keating give his first ever interview as PM – in December 1991 – knew what was ahead of us on that awful night in 1996. We went out to dinner – got two buses to go to Squirrels – a very good vego restaurant in Newmarket. Our intention was to avoid any knowledge that PJK would lose and enjoy the last night of the Keating era with a bottle or two of good wine and some great food. Unfortunately, and I think from memory it was only about 6.30pm, the radio was on at the bottlo and we heard the news about Tasmanian seats falling. Around the same time of night – back in 93 when I was being driven back from a booth at Coomera where I was handing out how to votes by Milton Dick (now the Qld ALP state secretary) – the news of Labor sweeping Tassie came over the radio on a back road through the bush in Mudgeeraba, and we knew it was all going to be fine. Better than fine, very very good indeed. But not in 1996. We had our dinner. At around 10pm, I got a cab over to Brian’s place at Ashgrove to join the weeping in front of the tv. And we’ve lived in some sort of awful alternate universe ever since. But all bad things come to an end, just as all things do. And here I am back in Sydney. On the very very last night of the Howard era. And it’s been a nice night – thanks to Miriam and Rachel for their company – lovely comrades to be on the cusp of the transition with!

  6. Guy says:

    I hope you’re right Mark!

  7. mick says:

    Wow, I thought this day would never come. It’s been a really long year. It will be so good to get back to blogging about policy rather than campaign tactics!

  8. Louisa says:

    In case anyone’s in Mexico City, I’ll be voting there tomorrow (Sat my time!) and would love to have a drink afterwards…

    My email is australianita at gmail

  9. Mercurius says:

    Each website I click
    Every banner and pop-up:
    Big bRudder, smiling.

  10. mick says:

    Hehe. Nice work Mercurius.

  11. Beppie says:

    Well, I’m off to hand out How to Votes for the Bennelong Greens.

    If any of you Bennelong folks find yourselves voting at Epping Boys’ High, come and say hello. 🙂

    Happy voting folks. 😀

  12. Gaz says:

    And remember fellow bloggers vote early,and what’s more, vote often.

  13. Paul Burns says:

    I hope you bare right Mark.
    Be assured you’re not the only one severely worried that Ratty might just sneak back. I won’t ask how can margfinal voters be so stupid. Experience tells me they just are.

  14. mick says:

    Gummo, I have a horrible feeling in my gut as well. Unlike you guys I have to try to sleep tonight before the counting starts…

  15. mick says:

    Oh,by Gummo I meant Paul. Sorry.

  16. Paul Burns says:

    On the assumption, which I’m no longer overconfident of, that there will be a Labor victory, surely the buening questons that will intrigue us will be.
    1.Will Howard still go on his morning power walk on Sunday morning, and if he does, will anybody tske any notice. I think it would just kill him to do that stride along North Sydney foreshores and not be followed by the media.
    2. How long will Rudd give Ratty and Marie Antoinette to move out of Kirribilli House?
    3.Does Howard vote in Bennelong or North Sydney?In either case wouldn’t it be wonderful if Labor won both seats by one vote.
    On a more serious note, Noel Pearson revealed his true colours last night, publicly condemning the ALP.
    I wonder what he got from the Coalition to do that, or has he just been a secret Liberal pushing neocon. policies on the Aboriginal community all his life, and he could no longer hide his light under a bushel for fear of a Labor victory. The Kooris I know hate him.

  17. Gaz says:

    The Kooris I know hate him.

    Yes indeed they do! They can read this white mans butler, like a cheap novel.

  18. Paul Burns says:

    Well, I’m about to go and do my bit to rid Australia of this evil little man and his evil government.Then, at least, if he wins I can hold my head up proudly and say I didn’t vote for him.
    Will be handing out some how to votes for Socialist Alliance for the Senate.
    I must say, I’m looking forward to further non-Howard political discussions, discussions on various aspects of culture, religion, history, literature,media, etc., all the things we’ve had to put aside for this cursed election, some time next week.Also a bit more friv.

  19. David Rubie says:

    That 52/48 Newspoll freaked me out. It made me nervous enough that I had to vote early although I calmed down considerably after doing the deed. So satisfying to put all the social conservatives, liars, idiots and dirtbags in reverse order of merit on the senate paper. Aaahh, nice!

  20. The Rockstar Philosopher says:

    I was just in Menzies handing out HTV cards for Philip Nitschke. The line was 100m long when the polls opened at 8, and it hasn’t let up one bit. A few people were mentioning that it may show that people are keen to get out and vote, keen for a change. It was interesting that the only people who only took one parties’ HTV cards, were invariably holding Liberal cards.

    My housemate left discordian pope cards in the booth and put some in with his vote 😀

  21. Klaus K says:

    I have a really bad feeling about it now… I hope it’s just last minute nerves. Fairly long queues down at Kogarah High School first thing this morning. I took the back gate to avoid the HTVs and harassment (and I’ve had it from both sides in the past). If this thing doesn’t come out right, I’m going to have to bury my head in my work for six months.

  22. Antonio says:

    My prediction, Coalition by three seats.

  23. joe2 says:

    Anybody seen any baseball or cricket bats around ?

    Johny seems to have had a sticky moment, while voting, when someone seemed to imagine he is a war criminal. How extraordinary.

    Nervous Nellys relax and remember who owns Newspoll.

  24. anthony says:

    Any results in yet? My nails are knackered and I’m looking around for where I left that packet of Old Holborn.

  25. anthony says:

    “So satisfying to put all the social conservatives, liars, idiots and dirtbags in reverse order of merit on the senate paper”

    Are there more than usual this year, the last 40 were like trying to pick something from a country video store.

  26. Zarquon says:

    Any results in yet?

    LDP in a landslide.

  27. Jim McDonald says:

    From Rage and Enthusiasm:

    Election day: the most important issue
    November 24th, 2007

    And so we come to vote. It’s democracy at work. As a nation we can decide between more of the same with Howard and then Costello, if Howard has a mind to honour his commitment to the Liberal Party, which – on his record – he might or might not do. That, of itself, is an authoritarian situation, at odds with history and at odds with the notion of a democratic election process. Our other choice is the Labor Party under a new leader, who has not engaged the key democratic issues, who has messed at the margins with the central concerns that go to the survival of democracy in the twenty-first century.

    But voting of itself does not guarantee the survival of democracy. It is respect for the legal pillars of democracy – habeas corpus and the processes based upon innocence until proven guilty – that in great part secure the open society that is a democracy. However, we now have laws that allow incarceration without charge, interrogation until a suspect gives in, Government support for the treatment of political prisoners, including Australians, David Hicks and Habib, held for years in a foreign, internationally illegal concentration camp, that have established ASIO as a secret police service. The South Australian Labor Premier and the Federal leader concur on their view that Hicks must be treated as a terrorist.

    The open and secure society in a democracy has principles and processes that ensure that residents and citizens cannot be exiled or jailed – sometimes for years – on faulty or concocted evidence: here we have had examples with Dr Mahommed Haneef and several cases in immigration. And the leader of the Labor Party says he will take the advice of the Federal Police and ASIO on such matters.

    An open society welcomes refugees and with due diligence processes their applications, examines their cases. In Australia, we turn them away, or render them to Island states and territories. If the refugees manage to make it to Australian shores they are then placed in closed concentration camps. It matters not that that people can be in these camps for years before decisions are made. And the major parties are in accord on refugee and immigrant policy.

    A democratic society goes to war when it is legal to do so and the nation is directly threatened. Its Government is open and honest with its people. John Howard sat in front of the nation’s cameras and bald-facedly told the Australian public that he [note how centralised decision-making became under this man] had not made a decision about joining in the invasion with the United States, when Australian troops were already on the ground in Iraq.

    I hope that the Coalition gets thrown out. I would like to understand that it is Howard’s ideology which is being rejected; that people understand that we are at a crossroads as a nation and one of the directions we can find ourselves led is down the path of fascism. I’m not saying that the Liberals and Nationals are fascist, but I am saying that they are collectively authoritarian conservatives whose behaviour, more quickly than we can realise, slips into suppression which expands beyond the current focus on Islamic terrorism.

    Unfortunately, the nature of most of the public debate during this election campaign and during the whole of this Government’s tenure, has been otherwise engaged on the marginal issues. They are marginal to these matters of which I am writing. But some of them are also indicative: the deliberate removal of democratic processes in the workplace, for one. The partisan government of this country for special and powerful interest groups, for another.

    I have been so disappointed with the populist responses of Labor under Rudd, the alternative to the lying, deceitful and dangerous leadership represented in conservative parties, that I have turned away from the ALP. It too has lost its idealism.

  28. The Rockstar Philosopher says:

    Too true Jim, but if Labor didn’t turn populist it would have lost another election… Better a centrist party which needs to work with the left (greens) than three more years of hard right folly.

  29. Paul Burns says:

    Back from the coalface.
    Lib/nat voters ignore people wearing Socialist Alliance T-shirts who are handing out how to votes -despite the fact I was wearing ny battered Akubra.
    People are terrified JWH might just scrape over the line and win government.(Didn’t talk to any Lib/Nats except to remark the flies were bad today – which they were – but I’m down the horse end of town.)
    Voters wanted to be really sure SA preferences went to the Greens, then to Labor (after the various Socialist parties – no stuff ups like accidentally preferencing FF just to teach Labor a lesson.) (I’m referring to what the ALP did last election, not to anything SA did.)
    People seemed to have already made up their minds how they were going to vote.
    Prediction: Greens to gain control of the Senate bop. I’m not confident of anything else.

  30. Steve D says:

    vote early, vote often

  31. Paul Burns says:

    Steve D,
    You can bet that Howard’s thought of voting early and often, and probably even worked out how ro do it and get away with it.
    Rhough I would never suggest this seriously, also vote when you’re dead.

  32. Su says:

    Longest bloody day of my life.

  33. Tiny Tyrant says:

    call and response:

    when we say ‘Howard’, you say ‘Die!’





  34. Stephen Hill says:

    The battle for Wentworth gets more surreal

    Journalist slaps Newhouse: witnesses

    Award winning journalist Caroline Overington hurled abuse at Labor candidate for Wentworth George Newhouse before slapping him across the face at a polling station in Sydney’s east, witnesses say.

    Ms Overington, a Gold Walkley winning reporter who works for The Australian newspaper, has been embroiled in a dispute involving a series of emails to independent candidate Dani Ecuyer urging her to preference Wentworth Liberal MP Malcolm Turnbull.

  35. SG says:

    In my home, we are playing Seachange and decorating our house for an election party. How exciting! Next we place bets on whether hte election coverage will be over by 6:30 or 7pm…

  36. Darin says:

    Re Paul D.

    I did a couple of hours this morning doing the democrat HTV thing in Blair. I was astonished at the massive early turn out and also, as you noticed, the amount of people who knocked all the cards back and obviously knew exactly what they wanted.
    Between “your rights at work” and Kevin07 there would have been 12 people handing out Labour material. Labour were looking after greens material as usual, but there was very little interest in the minor parties.

    The high lights for me were the amount of people gratuitously abusing John Howard when offered liberal material and the guy who told the Family First worker that he would not be voting for a Theocracy. I laughed, and she had no idea what he meant.

  37. Paul Burns says:

    Stephen Hill,
    Did any one take a photo or a video to post on You Tube and everywhere else possible.
    Love to know the real story behind such loss of dignity, or perhaps one should be cautious and leave well enough alone.

  38. paul walter says:

    See I have been just beaten … grr!
    Yes(SMH), Outhouse subjected to frenzied attack by hormonal, feral and steroid-driven, power-suited tantrum-throwing colleague of Milne, unless Oves was just reaching for handbag and mistook Henhouse for item.
    That bod that used to run Crikey won’t feel such an orphan, now that we know that it is actually a Murdoch journo thingy to ritually attempt disembowelment of random passers-by in public places.

  39. rf says:

    The one joy of living out west (politically speaking of course) is that I won’t have to wait as long for the result. Just as well because I haven’t felt this tense since awaiting a colonoscopy.

  40. nick says:

    I think it’s all over red-rover. The electorate got duped a few elections back with the GST and they regretted it. A few years later the left won the general vote but got robbed by the distribution of the swings, and the electorate regretted it. A few years after that came Tampa and the tories robbed us again.

    Once bitten, twice shy, three times stupid. I know some polls might show the pendulum swinging back but this time the electorate knows enough is enough.

    Put yourself in the shoes of these all important swinging voters. Last time they wandered into the polling booths and were thinking bully boy Latham or Grandpa JH, and in the climate at the time, they stuck with the devil they knew. Today, the swinging voter will wander into the polling booth thinking new Rudd or stinky stale JH. There is nothing going for the tories this time – they are all on the nose, their campaign has been unconvincingly negative throughout and the ALP for what it’s worth while not that different arent those a*&#hole tories who have rooted industrial relations and have an appalling record on the environment, two of the most important issues today.

    In fact, I think the ALP will win handsomely. I suspect Howard will get knocked off in Bennelong, and even if he doesnt he’ll hand in his parliamentary library card early next week.

    We all remember 83 when a teary Fraser conceded defeat and we all told to buggar off, tell it to someone who cares. I predict tonight will be ten times sweeter – to JH, I dont say au revoir, I say goodbye and get lost.

  41. silkworm says:

    “Saturday 24th November – Sounds Of Seduction DON’S AFTER PARTY Election Night Special


    Be part of history this coming Saturday night when the Sounds Of
    Seduction opens early for Election Night at 8.00pm with an all celebrity panel featuring DAVE GRAINEY, ROGER GRIERSON, MISS DEATH, JAY KATZ, PAUL HOWELL and COFFIN ED providing the kind of commentary the major networks wouldn’t dare broadcast. Join in the happy hour through until 10.30pm as the panel give you expert coverage of the drama that will definitely unfold – one way or the other. There will be special prizes, lots of laughs and that warm fuzzy feeling if the result goes the way most punters will be hoping. The panel will be followed by a special Don’s After Party version of the Sounds with Election updates throughout the night and the demolition of a special HOWARD/RUDD pinata at midnight. Hopefully we will all know our destiny for the next three years by then. So get there early at 8.00pm to be part of history and make Election night 2007 truly a night to remember (or haunt you forever if the result goes bellyupFor More extensive and detailed information please visit Hermann’s Bar Cnr City Road and Butlins Ave, opposite main gate Sydney University, Wentworth Building Only $10”

  42. LuckyPhil says:

    Yesterday felt like Christmas eve, today lots of food being prepared, esky full, friends coming over, reckon santa will arrive about 7pm Qld time.

  43. Darin says:

    Well put, Phil.

    Wonder if I have time to put the lights up…..

  44. nasking says:

    I rang a good mate in North Sydney. He socialises heaps & knows plenty of people in that area. I asked him who he was voting for. He replied in a bubbly mood: “we’re all voting for the Weather Man”. I had to laugh.

    Things are looking up.

  45. Cliff says:

    Howard’s been PM for exactly half my life. When he got elected Labor had been in power all my life and I felt really strange that the Government had changed… a bit unsure about what was coming next. I’ve got the same feeling now, except its been helped along by a feeling of unabashed joy as well. Hasta la vista Johnny!

  46. If the gods aren’t crazy it will be Kevin ’07 tonight.
    Have posted my virtual tally room links and will spend my time between the AEC and ABC TV until there is some result indication.
    Just hope that Howard does not rise from the dead!

  47. Guy says:

    For those looking for some early coverage, Sky coverage is being streamed here.

  48. Klaus K says:

    Exit polls are proving very interesting as reported on Sky. I sincerely hope they are correct.

  49. mbahnisch says:

    I just got a text from a friend saying the exit polls show 53/47 to the ALP and Howard trailing in Bennelong.

    Off to the Bat & Ball for the LP/New Matilda/2SER election night party!

    It’s at 495 Cleveland St… all very welcome! I’m wearing a purple shirt.

  50. j_p_z says:

    Jesus H. Kristofferson! It’s got to be the middle of the bloody next damn day over there by now. Who the hell won, FF[freakin’]S?!

    Don’t make me send a bunch of Republi-bots over there to count the damn votes FOR you…

  51. nasking says:

    “Jesus H. Kristofferson! It’s got to be the middle of the bloody next damn day over there by now. Who the hell won, FF[freakin’]S?!”

    j_p_z, not all the voting boots are closed yet. A Sky News Exit Poll is showing 53-47 for Labor on a 2 Party Preferred basis…but i’m holding my breath cause i remember the Corporate Media calling it early for Gore. I wish they left the exit polls until the very moment after the last booth closed.

  52. Beppie says:

    Well I just got home from handing out HTVs in Bennelong (for the Greens). My feelings are that Howard will hold on in Bennelong, but that Labor will win a narrowish but comfortable victory, and that the Greens will do very well in the Senate.

  53. skribeforti says:

    Virtual election party in Second Life on ABC Island.

  54. tiny tyrant says:



  55. tiny tyrant says:

    channel 9 are putting pics of losing candidates (mostly Libs) in a shredder (after stamping a big old ‘X’ on ’em).


  56. michael says:

    Howard is trailing Maxine in Bennelong. If he loses his seat I will go down to Kirribilli and dance down that street singing “Bye Bye Baby” and any other goodbye themed song I can think of.

  57. clarencegirl says:

    The Howard Government is gone, gone, gone, and John Howard is just coming out to concede defeat.
    How sweet it is!

  58. Tim Norton says:

    And now we can usher in a new era of change.

  59. Sacha says:

    Had a happy election party!

  60. j_p_z says:

    Congratulations to all the Labor supporters. Here’s hoping that Rudd governs wisely and well, and increases the well-being of all Australia. Cheers!

  61. steve says:

    One of my favorite post election stories is this. GG journalist slaps Labor candidate. Hopefully one of the first moves of the Rudd government will be to remove this person from the ABC board.

  62. Mark Hill says:

    1. Where are the razor gangs?

    2. Can we have Federation back now please?

    3. Can we repeal the appalling ASIO Act?

  63. Ambigulous says:

    The Co$tello Dummy Spit

    In a career punctuated by dummy spits, today’s was a doozy.
    Congratulations to all LP-posters who predicted that $weetie wouldn’t have the cojones to do the hard yards as Opposition Leader.
    Co$tello’s announcment makes Alexander Downer look even sillier (were that ossible): there he was on national TV this morning, saying what a “formidable” Leader f the Opposition Peter would be.
    It makes Tim Costello look even better than ever.
    Dummy Spits all round: would Alexander consider transferring to Sate politics? “Well, when you’ve been Foreign Minister for 11.5 years, State poltics doesn’y have a lot of appeal.
    Two leaders OUT in one go – well done, voters!

  64. Antigone's aunt says:

    I just read at the ABC News site that Matt Price has died. That is a real bummer.

  65. stephen.reeves says:

    better be carefull, their could be a counter coup in the offering, after all he could be taking his lead from the great Hugo Chavez, who all lefties admire.

  66. ZoeB says:

    Now stephen, don’t be sarky.

    Everyone knows – well everyone they know knows – that it was only their heroic “speaking truth to power”, evading the goons of the CIA, Mossad, and ASIO that stopped “Ratty” from declaring Martial Law and marching all ALP members into the gulags in the Simpson Desert.

    Come on, we owe these people a huge debt of gratitude. It was only the power of their implacable will and tinfoil helmets that enabled them to heroically resist the Orbital Mind Control lasers and scare Ratty into holding an election, instead of taking Australia into a Fascist Dictatorship.

    Now Australian troops in Iraq will no longer be the Great Satan’s pawns there, they’ll be in Afghanistan instead. The dismantling of US bases will take a few years to arrange of course, as will the show trials, but It Will Happen! You just have to be a believer. Now the Truth will out, no more silencing of dissent, confining it to just a few small voices on the ABC, SBS, Channels 7,9,10, the Age, the SMH, no, the People’s Voice will be heard at last!

    And all thanks to these few, these brave few, who vote early and especially often. For the Australian people can’t be trusted to vote correctly, they’re doing it for them, you see. They know better than we do.

  67. Oz says:

    What a great weekend. Had an amazing Thanksgiving meal, been seeing the sights in Washington and the Ruddslide wiping out Howard and now there will be a shitfight over the scraps in the Liberal Party will be amusing. Does it really get any better than this?

  68. Gravelly says:

    #3. “Several times over the past few months, I have said that I expected all sorts of dirty tricks and egregious abuse of power to be used to hinder, delay, postpone or even stop the federal election”.

    Bullshyte, sir!

  69. Ambigulous says:

    Bullshyte it may have been, but he really did say it. And now he must admit it was fearful fantasy.


  70. Graham Bell says:

    Gravelly [72]:

    So you feel relaxed-and-comfortable that it couldn’t possibly happen here, do you? Australians are just too nice and would never ever allow sort of thing to happen, are they? Given the previous regime’s disgraceful track-record of abusing trust and power – and given too my own personal experience and professioinal background, that was a realistic expectation. No bullshyte. No fantasy. A quantifiable risk. I am delighted that we avoided that fate.

    Amibulous [73] and Everyone:
    That humble pie tasted fine. I’m very glad I was wrong.

  71. Ambigulous says:

    i’m glad too, graham; i reckon that goes for everyone


  72. Mindy says:

    Tigtog – blidget thingys work well in IE too.

  73. Next time, resist the temptation to demonize politicians you happen to disfavor, Graham. The Apocalypse is only coming once, you know.

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