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Neville Wran’s Last Great Rally: Former NSW Labor Premier Eulogised In Moving State Funeral

On the 38th anniversary of his election as Labor Premier of New South Wales, Neville Wran was farewelled at a State Funeral at the Sydney Town Hall today.

The moving May Day service was addressed by former Prime Minister Paul Keating, former Wran minister Rodney Cavalier, former High Court Justice Michael Kirby and former NSW Premier Bob Carr. Tributes were also paid by Wran’s wife, Jill, and three of his children.

Kirby’s address was the highlight of the day, a perceptive and thoughtful insight into an “enigma”.

Keating described a man who understood power and who had “a PhD in poetic profanity”. Speaking of Wran’s unmatched ability to discern the mood of the electorate, Keating said: “He could hear the ants change step.” [Read more…]

Rodney Cavalier Speech: Could Chifley Win Labor Preselection Today?

In a timely speech, the former NSW Labor minister Rodney Cavalier has asked whether Ben Chifley could win Labor preselection today.

Rodney Cavalier

Speaking to the Fabian Society, Cavalier said a new political class now dominated preselections in the Labor Party. He said: “In the absence of intervention at the level of the parliamentary leadership, preselection in seats which matter falls exclusively to the inhabitants of the political class. The political class embraces union officials, ministerial and parliamentary staffs and party employees.”

Cavalier’s speech examines the nature of the modern Labor and the self-perpetuating oligarchies that control it.

Cavalier was a member of the NSW parliament from 1978-88. He was Education Minister in the Wran and Unsworth governments between 1984-88.

Speech by Rodney Cavalier to a NSW Fabian Society seminar at Gleebooks.

Could Chifley win Labor preselection today?

Could Ben Chifley win a Labor preselection today? No.

Could a railwayman from Bathurst win preselection today? No.

Could a man or woman who works during the day or night in a job that involves getting dirty and perspiring and without access to a telephone during working hours win a preselection today? No.

Could a professional devoted to his practice and his clients – that is, willing to work long hours, including night and weekends in preparation and research – could such a person win a preselection today? No.

Who can win a preselection today? [Read more…]