Cartoon: by Zeg.
After a long wait it now seems likely that the independents will commit themselves to one party or another, or maybe both tomorrow. They are not as united as was originally assumed. My guess is that at this stage two will go with Labor, while Katter is even money both ways.
There is a considerable degree of confusion regarding a couple of polls that have come out in the last week which seem to indicate that the majority of Australians would prefer them to back Labor despite the Liberals being the leaders in the two party preferred vote. There is also speculation on what this all means:
According to the Newspoll in The Weekend Australian (4-5/9), 39% of voters want the independents to support the Coalition, and 47% Labor. 14% are uncommitted, 6% being Coalition supporters and 5% Labor. The poll also says both Coalition and Labor supporters are almost unanimous in believing the independents should support their parties. ….
According to the TWS poll in the Sydney Morning Herald 31% of voters want the independents to support the Coalition and 37% Labor. 26% want a new election. But if there were another election the Coalition would lead on the two party preferred vote, 50.4% to 49.6%.
My read is there is probably a large group of Liberals who realize that Katter and Co have no real alignment with liberalism and would in fact be a disaster waiting to happen. While I think that Abbott could accommodate them and would if he got the chance, the wish list these people have presented is more consistent with Labor.
Windsor and Oakeshott favor a mining resource rent tax, and Emissions trading scheme, or carbon tax. While Katter opposes these, he would have to rely on Labor to get his ideas of restricted market share for our major supermarket chains, Coles and Woolworths, mandated 22% ethanol content in all fuel, centralized marketing boards, and devaluing the Dollar.
Katter has a serious problem grasping the concept of free markets and disagrees with them. He favors Labors white elephant National Broadband Network, and rails against telecommunications being in the private sector. He completely fails to grasp that the dominance of the two supermarkets is caused by their policy of providing better service at competitive prices to customers.
Other than by providing a service that is superior to that of any competitors, the only way a monopoly can form is to be favored by way of regulations. If there is anything unfair about the dominance of these two, he should seek out any regulation, which gives them an unfair advantage, and abolish it.
He has some policies that seem reasonably sane, such as return of recreational freedoms to traditional pursuits like fishing, camping and outdoor sports and activities, abolish the Wild Rivers legislation, which disadvantages the Aboriginal people in the north, and secure property rights, etc.
I am inclined to think Windsor and Oakeshott are probably at home with Labor, Katter should probably stay on the cross benches. The Liberal Party would have to be pretty desperate to govern to accept these idiots into their team, and some Liberals understand this. This is the reason for the difference between the electoral result and the preference as to where people would prefer the independents to go.
The best result would be for Labor to form a government with the aid of these three, enact some of its draconian policies, after which they and the independents would be voted out forever. I seriously doubt that we will ever see an end to the left without the population being subjected to the full bastardry that Labor and the Greens intend to inflict on us.