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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.


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Andrew Leigh: “If They Can’t Manage The Census, How Can They Manage The Other Arms Of Government?”

Shadow Assistant Treasurer Andrew Leigh has attacked the government over its handling of the census, following last night’s closure of the website used for online submission of census forms.

Leigh

“Millions of hours of Australians’ time has been wasted,” Leigh told a media conference. “I’m not sure Australians can have faith in anything the government says about the census… If they can’t manage the census, how can they manage the other arms of government?” [Read more…]


ALP Caucus Elects Expanded Shadow Ministry Of 32; Carr Survives

The ALP Caucus has met and elected the Shadow Ministry, following the federal election.

After a split in the Left faction, Senator Kim Carr has survived a proposed demotion and will remain in an expanded shadow ministry of 32.

The factional composition of the shadow ministry is Right 16, Left 15, with one unaligned. There are 19 males and 13 females.

The NSW Right has dumped Sharon Bird and promoted Ed Husic.

In Victoria, the Right has replaced David Feeney with Clare O’Neil, who has just been elected to her second term as member for Hotham.

Following a number of mis-steps in the election campaign, Feeney, the former shadow minister for Defence, is the biggest loser in the Caucus election. [Read more…]


Gillard Reshuffles Ministry; Supporters Promoted; Four New Ministers

In the aftermath of last week’s ALP leadership spill, Prime Minister Julia Gillard has announced her reshuffled ministry.

The new line-up was necessitated by the sacking of Simon Crean and the resignations of Chris Bowen, Martin Ferguson and Senator Kim Carr, and parliamentary secretary Richard Marles.

Speaking at a press conference this afternoon, Gillard announced that Gary Gray will become Minister for Resources and Energy, replacing Martin Ferguson. He will be joined in the Cabinet by Jason Clare.

Anthony Albanese, a prominent Rudd supporter, takes on Simon Crean’s former responsibility for regional development and local government, in addition to his existing role as infrastructure and transport minister. [Read more…]


On Labor And Liberalism: Leigh & Glover Debate The Role Of The ALP

An interesting debate took place today in Melbourne as Labor MP Andrew Leigh and Labor speechwriter Dennis Glover debated the ALP’s role in modern Australia.

The debate was one of a series conducted by the pro-Labor think tank Per Capita, under the title: “The Future of the Left in Australia: Embracing Social Liberalism”.

Leigh argued that Labor should become the party of liberalism, in addition to its commitment to egalitarianism. Glover, however, argued that Labor was and should remain the party of social democracy and avoid defining itself by a commitment to free market economic reform. [Read more…]


Andrew Leigh: A Brief Economic History Of Australia

This is the text of a speech given by Andrew Leigh, ALP member for Fraser in the ACT, to the McKell Institute.

Leigh was elected to parliament in 2010. Previously, he was a professor of economics at the Australian National University.

The speech was originally published on Andrew Leigh’s blog. [Read more…]


Giving Substance To The Words

There are thirty-two new members of the 43rd Parliament, elected on August 21st. Three of them are returning after a voluntary or enforced absence. As a group, they constitute one-fifth of the House of Representatives, a significant turnover and renewal of the lower house. Many of them will be there for years to come.

Maiden SpeechesOver the past month, I have made a point of watching the maiden, or first, speeches of these members. On the whole, it is difficult not to be impressed by these fledgling parliamentarians.

There has been much comment on the moving speech from the Western Australian Liberal, Ken Wyatt, the first indigenous member of the House, but others also delivered considered and thoughtful speeches.

Take Andrew Leigh, the member for Fraser in the ACT. His reputation as an economist and thinker preceded his election. In his speech, he spoke of the importance of education for the nation’s future, of “optimistic experimentation” and of rebuilding “a sense of trust between citizens and politicians”. Leigh’s book, “Disconnected”, has just been published. [Read more…]


Andrew Leigh (ALP-Fraser) – Maiden Speech

This is Andrew Leigh’s maiden speech to the House of Representatives as the ALP member for Fraser.

Leigh won the safe seat in the Australian Capital Territory, succeeding Bob McMullen, who had held it since 1998. Leigh secured 64.20% of the two-party-preferred vote.

Leigh, 38, is a former Professor of Economics at the Australian National University. [Read more…]