Labor’s Clare O’Neil says Party cannot afford to just shift to the left or right

LOOKS like Clare O’Neil maybe onto it! Much of what Clare has said resonates with us …

AS it does with Macro Business!

Labor’s Clare O’Neil says party cannot afford to just shift to the left or right

Frontbencher says Australia increasingly divided and party cannot just play to its supporters

Katharine Murphy @murpharoo

Thu 31 Oct 2019 

Clare O'Neil
 Labor frontbencher Clare O’Neil says left and right are no longer Australia’s defining political divisions. Photograph: Joel Carrett/AAP

*Labor frontbencher Clare O’Neil will challenge her colleagues to move beyond election postmortems centred on whether the ALP needs to shift to the right or left, arguing more resonant fault lines are emerging at the ballot box.

O’Neil will use a speech to a Labor thinktank on Thursday to argue Labor needs to rethink its economic program, consider how it engages with voters on cultural issues, recalibrate how it campaigns to change minds rather than confirm pre-existing biases, and think about how it projects political leadership in an era of strongmen and reactionary populism.

Joining Bill Shorten, Jim Chalmers, Joel Fitzgibbon, Mark Butler, Michelle Rowland and other frontbench players ruminating publicly on the consequences of May’s election defeat, O’Neil will argue left and right are no longer defining political divisions.

Labor accused of ‘sucking up to coal lobby’ as MPs go on the road with Minerals Council

 Read more

“I see a bunch of new faultlines emerging which are increasingly important at the ballot box,” O’Neil will say.

*“I see a faultline between winners and losers in a digital economy which provides vastly more economic rewards to people who live in our cities. I see a faultline dividing Australians who want the community to look more like it did in the past, and those who love and value change.


It would appear the faultline has come about accelerated by the Coalition policies of high growth through immigration of both permanent and temporary Visa holders from an average of 70,000 people per annum to some 400,000!

Australians were not asked! 70,000 was sustainable!

-2.2 Million Visa holders in Australia at any point in time

-the need for more infrastructure esp. in Sydney and Melbourne

-yet infrastructure remains inadequate

.causing much stress for residents and business stuck in gridlock

.with privatisation of public services the costs escalate for end users

-where we live has been rezoned for higher density with the loss of community rights, urban bushlands, HERITAGE, and our communities

.high-rise precincts 100% for overseas buyers (FIRB ruling)

.medium density of terraces, townhouses … duplex; loss of amenity for the established community

-the Coalition push for more infrastructure for the major cities is seen as neglect for the regions obviously, but Sydney e.g. is paying a huge price with the crush!

O’NEIL: *“A faultline dividing people who are worried about global interdependence, and those who see opportunity for global influence. A faultline between those who relish economic change and those who resist it.


Would those who see ‘opportunity’ with globalism be those set to profit?

Globablisation has led to a whole Cohort of Australians disadvantaged with the lowest wages growth having to compete with Visa Workers for a job

This follows through with many Australians being locked out of Home Ownership to become life-long tenants in their own country

Loss of Australian manufacturing and the importation of poorly manufactured goods that end up in landfill

The OBOR policy is all about furthering the interests of China and its citizens, not ours

This is how a lot of Australians feel!

O’NEIL: “Between young people who feel locked out of a life enjoyed by older generations, and those who think that kids have never had it better. Between open and closed, authoritarian and decentralised, the elites and the masses.


The authoritarian Coalition has finally united the Media with its ‘Your Right to Know’ Campaign … thankfully … prior to the recent Elections there was much censorship too of social media … blocking the reach and the Truth!

As parents of Millennials we know they have far less than we had … underpaid with no prospect of home ownership …

It cannot be denied that there is a ‘Big End of Town’ enjoying both Share and Housing Portfolios; employing Visa workers on low rates of pay; the divide is being maintained!

O’NEIL: “Political allegiances aren’t static. We don’t have a Brexit to smash open old loyalties. But slowly and surely, tectonic plates are on the move. In these moments, the parties that survive look alive.”

The Labor frontbencher says rather than playing to populist or strongman models of leadership, which are flourishing in a fractured political climate, Australian Labor can look across the Tasman to Jacinda Ardern, who models “irrepressible likeability and [a] vivid, genuine commitment to her country”.

She will say Labor is well placed to project leadership predicated on common values post-election because “there is no more authentic person in Australian politics than Anthony Albanese”.

O’Neil will say Labor needs a new narrative on the economy, because the model Labor has pursued since the 1980s of growing the economy by opening it up is broken.

*She will say the evidence for new approaches is national wealth increasing but families going backwards, business investment at record lows and stalling productivity growth.

“We have not told a sufficiently compelling story to Australia’s 2 million small businesses, or to our friends in digital,” she will say. “Technology is another issue where every political party is underdone. How families are coping with technological change may be the barbecue stopper of the teenies. Yet it is largely peripheral to what we talk about in politics.”

*She argues that there is a strait jacket culture developing in progressive circles

“where membership is granted with a box of ideas, and if you don’t accept one of the ideas in the box, you do not merely have a different opinion, you are obviously wrong, probably stupid and possibly subhuman”. *

CAAN: Agree!

*O’Neil says while she supports most ideas in the progressive box, Labor also needs to engage in the conversation about political correctness.

*“Not everyone with a concern about the immigration rate is a bigot,”

CAAN: This correlates with ‘and if you don’t accept one of the ideas in the box …. you are obviously wrong ….. subhuman’ is the response from some!

Never mind the factstoday I have an installer in my home … he apologised for being late … he wasn’t … but he had to come from the other end of Sydney … and the traffic congestion had stressed him!

He then said how expensive Sydney was … the rents … he likes Australia but obviously he feels he is ‘getting nowhere’ … is that because he is an honest hardworking man who has come here to migrate to contribute without ‘black money’?

O’Neil: she will say. “Not everyone with a hesitation about changing gender roles is sexist. Not every social change is inarguably a good one.

She says Labor will not be able to implement social change without a mandate “and if Australians feel they can’t question assumptions and positions in conversation with us, they will find someone else to talk to about it. The current environment can see political discourse descend to a form of tribal performance art.”

Nothing is gained, she says, when everyone plays to their audience, no one learns anything, no one listens and no minds are changed.

O’Neil’s speech on Thursday follows the first major speech of Albanese’s leadership. On Tuesday, the Labor leader outlined his approach to jobs and the future of work, and began the task of presenting climate change as opportunity for blue collar workers.