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The Ayes Have It: The History of the Queensland Parliament 1957-89

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ISBN: 9781921666315 Year: Pages: 745 DOI: 10.26530/OAPEN_458828 Language: English
Publisher: ANU Press
Subject: Political Science
Added to DOAB on : 2012-06-14 11:46:24
License: ANU Press

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‘The Ayes Have It’ is a fascinating account of the Queensland Parliament during three decades of high-drama politics. It examines in detail the Queensland Parliament from the days of the ‘Labor split’ in the 1950s, through the conservative governments of Frank Nicklin, John Bjelke- Petersen and Mike Ahern, to the fall of the Nationals government led briefly by Russell Cooper in December 1989. The volume traces the rough and tumble of parliamentary politics in the frontier state. The authors focus on parliament as a political forum, on the representatives and personalities that made up the institution over this period, on the priorities and political agendas that were pursued, and the increasingly contentious practices used to control parliamentary proceedings. Throughout the entire history are woven other controversies that repeatedly recur – controversies over state economic development, the provision of government services, industrial disputation and government reactions, electoral zoning and disputes over malapportionment, the impost of taxation in the ‘low tax state’, encroachments on civil liberties and political protests, the perennial topic of censorship, as well as the emerging issues of integrity, concerns about conflicts of interest and the slide towards corruption. There are fights with the federal government – especially with the Whitlam government – and internal fights within the governing coalition which eventually leads to its collapse in 1983, after which the Nationals manage to govern alone for two very tumultuous terms. On the non-government side, the bitterness of the 1950s split was reflected in the early parliaments of this period, and while the Australian Labor Party eventually saw off its rivalrous off-shoot (the QLP-DLP) it then began to implode through waves of internal factional discord.

Keywords

australia --- politics --- history --- parliament

Inside the Canberra Press Gallery

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ISBN: 9781921862373 Year: Pages: 254 DOI: 10.26530/OAPEN_459295 Language: English
Publisher: ANU Press
Subject: Political Science --- Media and communication
Added to DOAB on : 2012-06-14 11:46:25
License: ANU Press

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Before television, radio, and later the internet came to dominate the coverage of Australian politics, the Canberra Press Gallery existed in a world far removed from today’s 24-hour news cycle, spin doctors and carefully scripted sound bites. This historical memoir of a career reporting from The Wedding Cake of Old Parliament House offers a rare insider’s perspective on both how the gallery once operated and its place in the Australian body politic.

Using some of the biggest political developments of the past fifty years as a backdrop, Inside the Canberra Press Gallery – Life in the Wedding Cake of Old Parliament House sheds light on the inner workings of an institution critical to the health of our parliamentary democracy.

Rob Chalmers (1929-2011) entered the Federal Parliamentary Press Gallery in 1951 as a twenty-one-year-old reporter for the now-defunct Sydney Daily Mirror and would retire from political commentary 60 years later – an unprecedented career span in Australian political history. No parliamentary figure – politician, bureaucrat or journalist − can match Chalmers’ experience, from his first Question Time on 7 March 1951 until, desperately ill, he reluctantly retired from editing the iconic newsletter Inside Canberra sixty years, four months and eighteen days later.

As well as being considered a shrewd political analyst, Chalmers was a much-loved member of the gallery and a past president of the National Press Club. Rob Chalmers used to boast that he had outlasted 11 prime ministers; and a 12th, Julia Gillard described him as ‘one of the greats’ of Australian political journalism upon his passing. Rob Chalmers is survived by his wife Gloria and two children from a previous marriage, Susan and Rob jnr.

Keywords

australia --- journalism --- parliament --- press --- gouvernment

From Election to Coup The 2006 Campaign and its Aftermath

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ISBN: 9781921313363 Year: Pages: 483 DOI: 10.26530/OAPEN_459242 Language: English
Publisher: ANU Press
Subject: Political Science
Added to DOAB on : 2012-06-14 11:46:24
License: ANU Press

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In May 2006 Fiji held its tenth general election since independence in 1970. In a country with an unenviable history of electoral trauma, the mood was apprehensive if not tense – not least because of controversial public statements against the incumbent Qarase government being made by the commander of Fiji’s military forces. Despite a record number of parties and candidates, the winners were the two big parties – the heavily church-backed SDL, the party of choice of the majority of indigenous Fijians; and the Fiji Labour Party, the party preferred by most Indo-Fijians.

Although the result was ethnically polarised, for the first time in Fijian history the successful candidates came together to share power in a constitutionally ordained multiparty cabinet, with Laisenia Qarase retaining the prime ministership. But the fragile collaboration was short-lived. On 5 December 2006, Commodore Voreqe Bainimarama ordered a military takeover, declaring himself ‘President’, ousting the elected government and replacing it with an ‘interim’ government of his choice, and once again throwing Fiji into political turmoil.

With contributions from ex-Vice President Ratu Joni Madraiwiwi, ousted Prime Minister Laesenia Qarase, leader of the Fiji Labour Party and now interim Minister for Finance Mahendra Chaudhry, and an impressive array of leading commentators on Fijian affairs, this book provides a comprehensive and penetrating analysis of the lead-up to, the outcome and the aftermath of Fiji’s historic 2006 election. Shedding light on the complex weave of traditional chiefly systems, race relations, economics, constitutionality, the military ethos and religion, From Election to Coup in Fiji is essential reading for anyone with an interest in Fiji, the South Pacific and the politics of divided societies.

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