This morning a tune keeps coming into my mind. I hum it away but the words are a little different from the original. The tune is "After the Ball" and I apologise to Charles K Harris for the interference with his lyrics:
After the worker’s leaving, after the poster’s gone,
Many a heart’s rejoicing, if you could read them all—
Many the hopes that have heightened after it all.
We don't know yet if John Howard has been defeated in his seat of Bennelong by Maxine McKew. But it appears more than likely. John Howard sought to make it into the history books - by longevity as Australian Prime Minister. He would have like to equalled or surpassed the long period of office of Sir Robert Menzies. He failed. He is second only to Menzies. But he will make it into the record books for another reason which he almost surely did not ever imagine - he would be kicked out by the voters of Bennelong. John Howard did not seek this record - but he will become only the second Prime Minister in Australian history to be voted out of his own seat.
As Miss Eagle's campaign against John Howard's retirement until the chickens come home to roost has shown, John Howard has meted such inhumanity out to so many people that his actions could not go unaddressed by the electorate. This has happened. The chickens have roosted. They are in the henhouse. They sit on their perch - and John Howard has been knocked off his.
John Howard was the Prime Minister for Injustice. The Minister for Injustice, Mal Brough - co-author with John Howard of the military intervention into Aboriginal life and land in the Northern Territory - has been kicked out of his seat of Longman. It is pleasing to know that the ALP has won the seat of Solomon in the Northern Territory. There are only two Federal seats in the sparsely populated NT - one was already held by Centralian stalwart Warren Snowdon for the ALP. Now the other seat has been snatched away by the ALP from the Coalition. The people of the Northern Territory have expressed their views on the military intervention at the ballot box.
Of course, a number of Liberals are in the safest of safe seats but because of their administration of injustice need to go. This raises the question of resignations and by-elections. In this category, Philip Ruddock tops the list. His horrific administration of Immigration followed by his deceptive and devious administration of the Attorney-General's portfolio has meant that he does not deserve membership in the Parliament of Australia - but the electorate of Berowra has decided to return him anyway. We look forward to his resignation from Parliament within the next twelve months.
The current incumbent in the Immigration portfolio is Kevin Andrews who has proved to have only lower-levels of competence and a complete intolerance of the heat in the political kitchen. His report card should read: Consider your future.
Another who needs to consider his future is Tony Abbott. If there is a particular hallmark in the character of Tony Abbott, it is his absolute high-level rudeness. If Tony Abbott is to continue in Parliament, graduation from a reputable charm school should be mandatory. Why should the Australian public have to witness his carry-ons?
And does Alexander Downer consider that he has a future in the Parliament? What heights of power and fame does he think he can now aspire to? Methinks, Alexander is an example of the Peter Principle. He has risen to his level of incompetence. Didn't know about the AWB corruption, Alexander? You must be incompetent then, Alexander. Otherwise, you must be telling porkies, eh?
So onto a new day...We can't know or say what we are getting with Kevin 07 and his Krew.
We just believe that Howard & Co had to go.
We hope for a just, fair, equitable future for all.
And some of us are determined to keep Kevin and Krew to that.
And - for those who might be interested in how it happened in Australian democracy yesterday - here it is
Miss Eagle did her stint at Upper Gully School.
Schools traditionally use Election Day as an opportunity for fundraising
Miss Eagle as Booth Captain was there at 5.30am setting up for Your Rights At Work. YRAW is unique in that it had no candidates of its own but it did have a voting ticket to distribute. Our organisers in La Trobe, Katie and Sam, had provided us with a huge amount of bunting and there was a huge amount of fence to take it. So YRAW won the Fence Competition!
Posters, posters all about!
The Greens; ALP, the Officer in Charge of the Polling Booth, Liberal; What Women Want; Liberal.
Within two hours, we had formed a jolly little community of civic minded people.
Election hostilities are put far away on the day.
Australia does not use computerised voting although there have recently been pilot programs for the visually impaired. We use the plain old fashioned method: pencil and paper and placing in a secure box for counting, under scrutiny of all political parties, at the close of voting. Australia does not have the big issues of electoral fraud one hears of in the U.S.A. If there are disputes arising from the polling or the counting, matters can be referred to the Court of Disputed Returns for decision.On Election Night, there are parties - private, public, and political - so people can gather for drinks, food, and watching telecasts from the National Tally Room in Canberra. Last night, in the seat of La Trobe, Your Rights At Work and Kevin 07 people gathered in a small church hall in Tecoma and watched on the big screen - with more and more and more cheering as the night wore on. Miss Eagle was beyond applause. Euphoria would best describe her condition - sprinkled with a tear of great relief.
Howard conceding defeat - we were beginning to wonder if he every would!