A quick quiz

Which of these John Howard statements is more believable?:

This one:

JOHN HOWARD: There’s no way that GST will ever be part of our policy.

REPORTER 1: Never ever?

JOHN HOWARD: Never ever. It’s dead. It was killed by the voters in the last election.

Or this one?:

“The changes that went through last year were significant,” Mr Howard said.

“They weren’t unreasonable, they weren’t radical.
“We won’t be taking further major proposals in that area to the next election.”

Subsidiary questions: Does “We won’t be taking further major proposals in that area to the next election” mean that further major industrial relations proposals definitely won’t be introduced and passed in the next term of Parliament if they haven’t been taken to the next election?

Were the IR reforms enacted just prior to Christmas taken to the last election in any meaningful sense (i.e. actually mentioned in any Coalition advertising during the election campaign)?

Did the label “mean and tricky” cease to apply to John Howard in early 2001, or is Shane Stone still correct?

About Ken Parish

Ken Parish is a legal academic, with research areas in public law (constitutional and administrative law), civil procedure and teaching & learning theory and practice. He has been a legal academic for almost 20 years. Before that he ran a legal practice in Darwin for 15 years and was a Member of the NT Legislative Assembly for almost 4 years in the early 1990s.
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Ann
Ann
15 years ago

When I heard Pm’s comment, I thought yeah right! Just like GST was dead. This man has an art of diluting the truth, so the Aust. public thinks he’s saying one thing, but he actually means another. I don’t think Australians really know what they are voting for because everything changes down the track. He is treating the public like a bunch of idiots and most are falling for it. It is interesting to see Qantas moving 2000 maintenance jobs overseas under these new IR reforms and I ask the question ‘how are these new laws suppose to help the Australian workers, if their jobs are being taken overseas’?

Homer Paxton
Homer Paxton
15 years ago

I can imagine that a creative mind at the ALP could go to town on this in the next election.

I am told this is what Mark Latham wanted to do but the roosters advice was not to proceed that way.

Homer Paxton
Homer Paxton
15 years ago

Silly me.

it has just been pointed out to me that johnee said this before the last election!

andrewm
andrewm
15 years ago

Can we put these slogans on a truck and drive it around to all of Howards speach events or park it out the front of Parliament house?

I know there’s a truck going around that hasn’t been used since 1996. You’ll just have to take off some trade deficit thingy thats on the back.

Make sure you call ahead otherwise they’ll call the 1800 dob in a terorist number and politely ask you to cease and desist.

Homer Paxton
Homer Paxton
15 years ago

I believe it will be on the news tonight Ken.
The black dwarf asked the question.

Phil
15 years ago

Do not trust any further than can be drop-kicked, as I pointed out chez v v v last night. At some stage surely people will wake up that he wants words to mean exactly what he wants them to mean. We hope?