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This site may, in fact always will contain images and information likely to cause consternation, conniptions, distress, along with moderate to severe bedwetting among statists, wimps, wusses, politicians, lefties, green fascists, and creatures of the state who can't bear the thought of anything that disagrees with their jaded view of the world.

Jun 30, 2013

Gillard most productive PM?

Government never furthered any enterprise but by the alacrity with which it 
got out of its way. – Henry David Thoreau

The fact that the article in the Guardian, “Was Julia Gillard the most productive prime minister in Australia's history?” was written at all is something of an indictment of the attitudes of the press, or at least some of it.  Productivity and government are mutually exclusive, as those nations that have adopted state control of their enterprises have found out to their dismay.
The Guardian not only argues that there is such a thing as a ‘productive government, but doubles down on a stupid idea by suggesting that it can be measured by the amount of legislative acts passed per day in office.  Given that such acts tend to be regressive to productive enterprises, or increase the cost of doing business, the conclusions reached are the complete opposite of what is desirable: 
How do we measure the effectiveness of a government? There are polls, both of opinion and at the ballot box, but these don't really offer us any measure of effectiveness. You can look at the economy and measure the health of the populace - and these are both good indicators - but are not wholly under the influence of the government of the day. 
One way might be to look at the ability of a government to pass legislation. Admittedly this is a quantity over quality approach, but it does offer us a quantitative measure of a government, political party or prime minister. Someone that gets a lot of legislation passed might be considered to be good at getting things done. 
I took all of the Commonwealth of Australia Numbered Acts and assigned them to a prime minister, political party, and parliament based on the date of assent of the act. This isn't entirely exact, as some legislation may be introduced under one PM and passed under another, though I believe it is a good proxy. 
From this dataset, I counted the total acts for each PM, party, and parliament. Then, I determined the number of days in office for each PM, and the number of days each parliament and party governed. Using these figures you can calculate a rate of acts per day, which accounts for different lengths of prime ministers' or governments' terms. 
The results? 
Julia Gillard had the highest rate of passing legislation with a rate of 0.495, followed by Bob Hawke at 0.491: ...
This is fairly indicative of the overly cozy relationship between the media and big government and the way in which the former has become the cheerleaders for the latter. 
These creatures of the state not only fail to understand the stifling effect of massive regulation on the economy, business, and the liberty of the people at large but actually mistake legislative over-reach for productivity, except when done by governments whose politics they disagree with.
Bring back George Reid and give him a hung parliament to make legislation more difficult than that which allowed him to pass a bill every 40th day. 


  1. Talking about comparisons, at Quadrant there is an interesting comparison between the wackiness of the Whitlam era to the Gillard.

  2. Governments tend to be a lot like droughts, floods, cyclones, and bush fires. If the one you are up against is bad, it is usually seen as the worst in living memory.

    This guy seems to have had a ringside seat at the inner workings of the Whitlam government which must have been a pretty bizarre experience. Having lived through it, I tend to still believe that Rudd/Gillard/Rudd2 is still worse.

    Gough was an arrogant overbearing, pompous old git who thought he knew it all but had little, if any real world experience. His front bench were an interesting collection of eccentrics and the barking mad. That said, I really don't believe that they did anything like the damage that the current mob have done.

  3. Agreed.
    Whitlam at least had a goal to achieve, the implementation of social reform which he did at the cost of staying in power. With his little real world experience and failure to grasp any financial fundamentals he ran the economy and his credibility into the ground striving for the "great social reforms".
    With Rudd/Gillard/Rudd2 the goal was to stay in power at the cost of all else. At least the Hawke/ Keating Labor governments learnt the lessons of Whitlam's economic failings and were at pains not to repeat them. Rudd/Gillard/Rudd2 failed to listen to the lessons of history. They failed to provide an administration with economic responsibility; they fail to offer a vision for the country & wandered it aimless circles and worst of all they failed the historical base of the labor movement, the average worker.

  4. I can't argue with that. Whitlam may have been an idealist, but Rudd/Gillard/Rudd2 have been creatures of ideology, something quite different.