Fas­ci­nat­ing Queens­land

Port Douglas & Mossman Gazette - - NEWS | OPINION -

PAULINE Han­son was front and cen­tre in a rare in­ter­view last week­end – on In­sid­ers, a po­lit­i­cal TV chat show – and what she had to say about penalty rates seemed to me a huge re­buff to the bat­tlers who are pre­cisely the peo­ple ramp­ing up her prospects.

She might lose votes now that the bat­tlers see her sym­pa­thy more for small busi­ness own­ers – as she once was – than their work­ers.

On the other hand, there are those in the me­dia who have been fo­cus­ing on Queens­land and com­ing to the con­clu­sion that Han­son’s ap­peal is quite wide­spread in the mid­dle class too.

The very no­tion is a shock to the dominant par­ties who are be­gin­ning to see the writ­ing on the wall, and it’s worse than their night­mares.

It won’t be just shop­keep­ers, but more broadly white col­lar pro­fes­sion­als pick­ing up on her direct­ness af­ter years of lack­lus­tre gov­ern­ments, none more so than the cur­rent do-noth­ing gov­ern­ment in Bris­bane.

On the sub­ject of penalty pay rates, mem­ber for Le­ich­hardt War­ren Entsch has the courage of his con­vic­tions to stand by the de­ci­sion in favour of small busi­ness. It may turn out to be coura­geous — it prob­a­bly is — but pol­i­tics is a very un­cer­tain af­fair and who knows how it will all turn out. The next fed­eral elec­tion is quite a way off. Any­way, it’s to his credit to stick to his con­vic­tions — that at least is at­trac­tive in age when peo­ple are seek­ing strong and prin­ci­pled lead­er­ship.

It is heart­en­ing to see the new boss of the ABC spend­ing money to ex­pand its ex­cel­lent re­gional cov­er­age. It wasn’t long ago that just the op­po­site was hap­pen­ing. Amid the re­newed con­cern for the re­gions at the po­lit­i­cal level, it seems Ms Guthrie has re­alised there’s a great big coun­try out there. The ru­ral ser­vice, free of ide­ol­ogy, is vi­tal source of news. More money is great news.

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