Category: John Howard

John Howard for UK PM – He may not be needed after all

Posted by – 11 May, 2010

I’m just putting it out there. Howard could stand for the Conservatives in the seat of Thirsk and Malton, which is due to hold its election on 27th May. Given that Cameron failed to deliver a majority, Howard would have cause for pushing him aside in a primary vote off. The sight of which would make Gordon Brown and Nick Clegg wet their pants. I’ve no doubt that the conservative newspapers would get behind him and the Premiership would then be his.

During the height of his powers Howard was consistently rated by UK conservatives as the best conservative leader in the world at 53 per cent.

With the way the political left are constantly going on about how Menzies supposedly wanted to take over from Churchill during WWII, you would have thought that they would have proposed the idea of Howard taking over from Cameron by now.

UPDATE

Fantasy aside, looks like bed wetter David Cameron is about to become PM. I don’t think he has what it takes to turn the UK around. Someone may have to stab him in the back half-way through the 5 year term, assuming the coalition  or minority government – which ever it ends up being – lasts that long.

ALP admits Howard was right

Posted by – 3 April, 2010

Last year Rudd had this to say about Howard:

”indolent, perhaps not always opposing the great transformation reforms engineered by Labor during its 13 years in office but barely adding to that reform agenda”.

Charming stuff. However his treasurer Wayne Swan later in a less publicised moment came out against this claim:

”But decisions made in Canberra played a role too. I think of financial market deregulation, some of which began when John Howard was treasurer

”We think of the continuation of financial sector reforms carried out by Peter Costello and John Howard when they were in office, in particular the prudential regulation that safeguarded our banking system during the global financial crisis. We honour John and Peter for that.”

Compare and contrast the maturity of opinion of the two men. Now Rudd is being thrown to the lions by his small business minister, who wrote the following in the Australian this week in the context of government socialist miss management in California:

It’s no coincidence that the government of the world’s seventh largest economy is almost broke and is strangling small business. When California’s politicians run out of taxpayers’ money to spend on their programs, they turn to regulation to indulge their social and environmental engineering obsessions. The attraction of regulation is that, unlike budget spending, its cost is usually hidden….

The Hawke, Keating and Howard governments, in adopting market-liberalising measures, effectively shunned the Californian model. During the deepest global recession since the Depression most of Australia’s small businesses were able to withstand a drop in sales while keeping their staff, albeit on reduced hours. Economic stimulus was vital to their survival, but so was their experience competing in open markets.

Thanks to classical liberalism we have avoided the worst of what the left has to offer.

Who would have thought?

Posted by – 9 February, 2010

Finally someone in the ALP fesses up to what they have known all along but been too insecure to admit:

Last night Mr Swan credited the Coalition with helping create a ”most remarkable run” in economic success. ”For those who may not know, who have somehow escaped being told several times already, we are now in the 19th year of uninterrupted economic expansion in Australia.

”Later this year we will begin the 20th year,” he told guests who included Mr Hawke, Mr Howard, Mr Keating and Mr Costello.

”This long run of prosperity … follows more than a quarter century of economic difficulty for Australians. The expansion of the world economy played a part, particularly the strength of the Asian regional economy.

”But decisions made in Canberra played a role too. I think of financial market deregulation, some of which began when John Howard was treasurer

”We think of the continuation of financial sector reforms carried out by Peter Costello and John Howard when they were in office, in particular the prudential regulation that safeguarded our banking system during the global financial crisis. We honour John and Peter for that.”

Some though continue to be full of pride and just plain ignorance:

His words stand in contrast to those of the Prime Minister, Kevin Rudd, who last year described the Howard decade as ”indolent, perhaps not always opposing the great transformation reforms engineered by Labor during its 13 years in office but barely adding to that reform agenda”.

What a clown…

Would not have happened to John Howard

Posted by – 17 November, 2009

Rudd’s expertise in foreign affairs at work again:

Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono was expected to arrive early next week, but an Indonesian Foreign Ministry spokesman says it will not go ahead because of scheduling issues.

The Opposition says Australia’s relationship with Indonesia has been strained by the Government’s handling of a group of asylum seekers on board the Oceanic Viking.

Opposition Foreign Affairs spokeswoman Julie Bishop says Prime Minister Kevin Rudd is to blame.

Comes after Rudd was unable to secure a meeting with SBY at APEC. SBY has every right to feel angry at Rudd for dumping the ALP’s  illegal immigration problem on Indonesia. A problem of Rudd’s creation.

Australia Day Council denouncing Australia

Posted by – 15 November, 2009

Well not quite. The Council has set-up some type of consultative process to air the views of a range of Australians, and of course  who gets the most publicity. Well you figure it out by the headline appearing the the SMH:

Identity crisis: our cross to bear

These tax-payer funded community consultative processes have become veiled attempts to air the views of the radical left – because they wouldn’t get an airing any other way. You know, Australians are just a bunch of racists and so are our national symbols. Everything from the Union Jack to the Southern Cross. And of course guess who is to blame?

…the Australia Day Council launched a campaign last week to ask which symbols and images best represent our country, opinion-makers and public figures were at odds on how to answer the question – variously describing the Southern Cross as everything from ”beautiful” to ”racist”….

Tim Soutphommasane, a first-generation Australian and author of Reclaiming Patriotism: Nation-Building for Australian Progressives, said symbols such as the Southern Cross came to be associated with a new wave of patriotism under the conservative Howard government.

”Many Australians have been content to regard all expressions of national pride as thinly disguised racism,” he said. ”The result has been a surrender of all things patriotic to extreme nationalists.”

It is a bit formulaic – ‘ we are all meant to question our current symbols because clearly they are inadequate, especially after JH’. However if the Australia Day Council wants to promote this tosh they might want to consider that the only people with the identity crisis are those on the PC and radical left.

Australians for Constitutional Monarchy national convener Professor David Flint disagreed, saying critics were out of touch with the Australian people and that it was a ”pity to undermine the great symbols of the nation”.

”The fact [the symbols] have been imported doesn’t make them any less Australian.”

NRL becomes the ALP’s lapdog

Posted by – 23 October, 2009

Well I never thought it would happen, but it looks like the ALP has said no to John Howard being the Chairman of the NRL Commission:

The Herald can reveal that Mr Albanese was instrumental behind the scenes in lobbying the NRL against giving the former prime minster a role on the code’s new independent commission…

The minister rang the NRL chief executive, David Gallop, as well as other league officials to tell them it was ”a stupid idea”. Mr Albanese also marshalled officials from the Rabbitohs, of which he was once a board member, to help kill off the idea.

”Nobody I spoke to thought it was a good idea,” Mr Albanese said.

We now know who really runs the NRL. Seems they can’t keep politics out of the sport. Well, Rugby League is a dieing sport, especially since the rugger buggers won themselves a place in the Olympics. I don’t see where the attraction for Rugby League will come in the future – maybe ex-convicts looking for a good time.

Howard’s final economic vindication

Posted by – 6 October, 2009

Using 2007 data, the final year of Howard’s term in office, the UN has ranked Australia’s standard of living as 2nd best in the world. Before Howard took over as PM, Australia was ranked 15th on the UN’s Human Development Index in 1995. According to Rudd though, it was all good luck. So based on this logic there must be 179 countries - those ranked below Australia – with lots of bad luck.

Yep, Rudd really isn’t that smart

Posted by – 11 September, 2009

Rudd’s recent accusation that the other side of politics dropped the ball on reform, and of being ‘indolent’, has been rebutted from Howard ‘Stirred from his sick bed’:

His analysis of the economic reform process in Australia since 1980 was partisan, inaccurate and lacked any semblance of objectivity.

Which is to be expected from Rudd, a PM that seems to have been asleep over the last 30 years.

LET’S start with some facts. As the 1980s began Australia needed five major economic reforms to ensure success in a rapidly globalising world economy.

They were financial deregulation (LIB/ALP), fundamental taxation reform (LIB), dismantling of high tariff protection (ALP), privatisation of government-owned commercial bodies (ALP/LIB) and a freer labour market (LIB).

My notations above.

The blueprint for financial reform came from the Campbell inquiry, set up by me, as treasurer. The reform process here started with the Fraser government, through the introduction of a tender system for the sale of Treasury notes and Treasury bonds, described by the former Reserve Bank Governor Ian Macfarlane, in his 2006 Boyer lectures, as “second only in importance to the float of the Australian dollar in 1983″.

The Fraser government also began the politically difficult task of deregulating interest rates, by removing all interest-rate ceilings on bank deposits.

Howard notes that Treasury – i.e. the public sector world that Rudd comes from – opposed these initial financial reforms. Howard also points out that something happened to the ALP when they went into opposition. They basically turned their backs on the Hawke/Keating economic legacy by opposing continued financial deregulation, tax reform and the privatisationagenda. (Hint to left-wingers in the Coalition that turn their back on the Howard legacy). Rudd is a product of the ALP’s strange days in opposition.

Labor negativity in opposition was not confined to the five major reforms I have cited. It also tried to thwart the fiscal consolidation process, commenced in Peter Costello’s first budget in 1996.

The ALP basically opposed anything and everything. But of course today when the Coalition try to make amendments to government legislation they are mostly de-rided by the Canberra press gallery. And compare the achievements of the last governments with Rudd’s. What exactly has he achieved? Money spent on classrooms schools don’t want, billions sent to China to make ceiling insulation, back to the future employment legislation a couple of essays and a number of incomprehensible and ill-informed speeches.

‘A victory for democracy’

Posted by – 5 September, 2009

Readers may recall a Yes Prime Minister episode entitled ‘A victory for Democracy’ in which Jim Hacker does battle with the civil service to ensure the continuation of democracy on the island of St George (a fictitious island). The civil service do their best to stop Jim Hacker intervening in the affair to defeat a group of Marxist agitators intent on overthrowing the democratic government. The Foreign Office have drawn up their own policy position and they are intent on ignoring the will of government. The position on St George’s can best be summed up be these classic lines:

…every support, short of help.

I was reminded of this episode when reading a Paul Kelly article on the East Timor intervention, with reference to the great mandarin and apologist for corrupt regimes, former civil servant Hugh White:

Defence Department deputy secretary Hugh White, the leading strategist, defined what he believed were Australia’s objectives. They were: having East Timor remain part of Indonesia; ensuring ties with Jakarta were put before the fate of East Timor; retaining Australia’s military ties with Indonesia; and avoiding any Australian Defence Force deployment, if possible.

In other words, ‘every support, short of help.’ Another case of Canberra civil servants pretending to be politicians. However:

These were White’s principles guiding the Defence Department; each of them was trashed before the end of the year, proof of the violation of policy orthodoxy that Howard and Downer would entertain.

The whole Paul Kelly article is worth a read. I disagree though with one point; that the success of the mission was only due to Indonesia deciding not to challenge the intervention. As if the ADF did nothing at all to contribute to the mission’s success – it just happened by itself. This is typical left-wing historical defeatist revisionism at work.

The story of East Timor’s independence is pretty remarkable for the speed in which it took place and the people Howard and Downer convinced (Habibie, Clinton) or pushed out of the way (Hugh White) to make it happen.

Rudd’s ignorant essay

Posted by – 1 August, 2009

MT has written a to the point response to Rudd’s latest essay, in which Rudd once again condemns something he calls ‘neo-liberalism’, in favour of big socialist government bureaucratic driven and highly regulated solutions to national problems. Well history is clearly on MT’s side. As Thatcher once said, socialism fails because eventually it runs out of other people’s money. Equally clear is that Rudd has no idea, firstly of what caused the financial meltdown and secondly of recent economic history – especially the 1970s stagflation. If Rudd is seriously arguing that the last 30 years have a been a ‘neo-liberal’ failure, then what, the 1970s were boom times!?! Gerard Henderson tears apart Rudd’s recent essay, exposing the contradictions and plain ignorance of Rudd’s words.

…If right-of-centre politics is responsible for the GFC, then the British economy should be in a stronger position than Australia’s. It isn’t.

But to acknowledge this Rudd would have to concede that the Howard government made some correct decisions on taxation and expenditure, industrial relations including waterfront reform and financial regulation and oversight.

Of all the actions Rudd has taken since being in government, his water policy above all else demonstrates his disdain for rural Australia in favour of his devotion to the inner-city ‘green’ chattering classes:

On water security, our biggest environmental challenge, he is abandoning the vision of investing $10bn in increasing water efficiency in rural Australia by diverting these funds to buy back more and more water entitlements without regard for the impact of those buybacks on food security or the communities that depend on them.

Rudd’s let them eat cake moment, imported at that.