Can You Help?

This website is in imminent danger of being shut down. It has been online since 1995, but the personal circumstances of the owner, Malcolm Farnsworth, are such that economies have to be made. Server costs and suchlike have become prohibitive. At the urging of people online, I have agreed to see if Patreon provides a solution. More information is available at the Patreon website. If you are able to contribute even $1.00/month to keep the site running, please click the Patreon button below.


Become a Patron!


Archives for October 1999

John Howard’s Speech to the NSW State Convention of the Liberal Party

This is the text of Prime Minister John Howard’s speech to the NSW Convention of the Liberal Party.

Text of John Howard’s speech to the NSW Convention of the Liberal Party.

John HowardThank you very much Michael for those very warm words of introduction. To Shane Stone the Federal President, Kerry Chikarovski, the Leader of the New South Wales Opposition, to my many ministerial and parliamentary colleagues and most importantly of all my fellow members of the New South Wales Division of the Liberal Party.

Not surprisingly I would like to share with you this morning some thoughts on the past year and also some ideas about the year ahead at a national political level. But I would like to start my remarks this morning by addressing an issue that is very important to the future strength and survival of the New South Wales Division.

I want to congratulate the Executive of the party here in New South Wales for the decision it took last night to establish a committee of management to run the affairs of this party in the months ahead. [Read more…]


With One Week To Go, Republic Looks Doomed

With opinion polls putting support for a “Yes” vote in next Saturday’s referendum no higher than the mid-40s, and as low as the 30s, the republic debate is moving into top gear.

Monarchists today targeted Tasmania, where polls indicate the highest proportion of undecided voters.

On the republican side, former Prime Minister, Bob Hawke, has been enlisted to campaign full-time throughout the last 10 days.

It is beginning to appear more likely, however, that the republic will be defeated.

Click here to read a devastating critique by Alan Ramsey from the Sydney Morning Herald that outlines how Howard has killed the republic.


Napthine Announces Shadow Cabinet

New Victorian Opposition Leader, Dr. Denis Napthine, has announced his shadow cabinet line-up.

There are 22 members, up from the 18 members in the former Kennett government, including 5 members of the National Party and 4 women. The average age of the shadow ministry is just under 48 years.

In a procedure not used since 1988, the Opposition party room elected 9 members of the shadow cabinet. Dr. Napthine augmented this by choosing Ted Baillieu (newly-elected to replace Phil Gude in Hawthorn), Geoff Leigh (member for Mordialloc and long-time Liberal Party hatchet-man), Victor Perton (anti-Kennett member for Doncaster) and Helen Shardey (second-term member for Caulfield).

Newly-elected member for Brighton and Deputy Opposition Leader, Louise Asher, is the big winner in the line-up, securing the key post of Shadow Treasurer, where she will be pitted against the Premier, Steve Bracks.



Napthine Coalition Shadow Ministry – Victoria 1999

The Victorian Opposition Shadow Ministry was announced on October 29, 1999 by the new Opposition Leader, Dr. Denis Napthine.

The shadow cabinet has been expanded from the 18 in government to 22, in order to accommodate demands from the National Party.

The 4 leaders in both houses are automatically members of the shadow cabinet, the Liberal party room conducted an exhaustive ballot to elect 9 members, the National Party nominated 5 members, and Dr. Napthine chose 4 additional members (Baillieu, Leigh, Perton & Shardey). [Read more…]


Kennett Set To Quit Parliament: By-Election Battle Looms

Shot himself in the foot?Former Victorian Premier, Jeff Kennett, is set to quit parliament.

The Australian reports today that Kennett has decided not to stay in Parliament since his defeat last week.

The resignation could come as early as today, ensuring that Kennett will not sit in the new Parliament when it meets for the first time next Wednesday.

The Liberal Party holds Kennett’s seat of Burwood with a margin of 6.79% and the new Labor government will be keen to consolidate its precarious hold on government with a by-election victory. Expect a big-name, high-profile candidate to be preselected.

Meanwhile, Kennett and his supporters, including party president Joy Howley, have already annointed Helen Kroger, the ex-wife of former Victorian party president, Michael Kroger, as the Liberal Party’s candidate for Burwood.

In a deliciously mischievous move, the attempt to propel Ms. Kroger into Burwood seems designed to pre-empt moves by the Kroger-Costello faction to find their own candidate. Ms. Kroger apparently remains close to Costello.


Howard and Costello in Conflict as Republic Referendum Hots Up

The battle between monarchists and republicans has taken a new turn as Howard government ministers adopt increasingly belligerent positions for and against the referendum due on November 6.

The Prime Minister, John Howard, issued a major statement to his Bennelong constituents earlier this week outlining his arguments against a republic.

This was followed by a speech from Treasurer Peter Costello that rebutted Howard’s argument point by point. [Read more…]


Peter Costello’s Statement in Support of the “Yes” Case

The Federal Treasurer, Peter Costello, has set out his reasons for supporting next month’s republic referendum.

Statement by Peter Costello in support of the YES case for the Republic referendum.

Peter CostelloI don’t think I thought much about our head of state, or about the monarchy, or indeed about republics before I became a delegate to last year’s Constitutional Convention. Like most Liberals, I had seen the republic debate as a political distraction. It was something which, if it had been raised by Paul Keating, must have been a bad idea and worthy of opposition. And I think there are many Liberals who still think that way.

But I came to the conclusion that a monarchy was not the symbol for an egalitarian nation like Australia – and not a concept for me, even though I didn’t have difficulties with our present Queen.

I don’t believe positions should be settled on bloodlines; that people should hold public office because of heredity. I believe in rewarding effort, talent and creativity. [Read more…]


Hereditary Peers Abolished in Britain

House of LordsAn historic constitutional reform which abolishes hereditary peers in Britain’s House of Lords was passed today.

The Lords voted 221-81 to end 800 years of hereditary titles.

With devolution in Wales and Scotland now established, Labour Prime Minister Tony Blair has presided over the most significant constitutional and parliamentary reform since the Great Reform Act of 1832. [Read more…]


Napthine and Asher Elected To Lead Liberals in Victoria

Dr. Denis Napthine was officially elected today as the new leader of the Victorian Liberals.

He was unopposed for the position. His deputy will be Louise Asher. The new leadership team signals a final end to the Kennett era in Victorian politics.

Asher, recently elected to the lower house seat of Brighton, defeated Phil Honeywood, Robert Doyle and Robert Dean for the deputy’s job. Asher and Honeywood swapped votes to keep Doyle out.

Parliament meets for the first time since the election next Wednesday 3 November.


John Howard’s Statement in Support of the “NO” Case

The Prime Minister, John Howard, has issued a statement setting out his reasons for opposing next month’s referendum on on a republic.

Statement from the Prime Minister, John Howard.

The Prime MonarchistI have previously indicated my intention to make a considered statement on the referenda to be held on November 6.

Accordingly, I attach a statement of my reasons for voting ‘no’ to the proposed republic as well as a statement in support of the preamble.

I have drawn upon this material to detail my position in a newsletter to my constituents.

27 October 1999

Introduction

On 6 November Australia will vote on two constitutional proposals – one on a republic and another on a preamble to the constitution. [Read more…]