you're reading...
Australian Politics, Unions

2017 – It’s Time to be like Gough


Today, 5 December, 2016 marks 44 years since Gough Whitlam broke 23 years of conservative rule. In 2016, we saw a mark in our history where so many people are screaming for change. In 2017, It’s time to be like Gough.

A Champion of Change

Former Labor Prime Minister Edward ‘Gough’ Whitlam (11 July 1916 – 21 October 2014) is Australia’s greatest reformist Prime Minister. He led the change in Australia to establish us as a truly progressive society.


Gough Whitlam was a man of the people. He stood for workers, battlers, migrants, everyone. He wanted to shift Australia to a more inclusive and progressive society.

The crux of the what Gough Whitlam did, was to bring more people into this exclusive collective by opening up opportunities, through a hand up, a fair go for all.  Gough’s vision was to propel the nation forward, through ensuring that individual Australians could achieve enormous success; even if they were in a previously ‘excluded group’ under the Liberals.

He wanted every single Australian, to be the best that they could be.


Gough Whitlam propelled this country forward, and these changes became the status-quo we all accepted and still do:


It is well known that Gough Whitlam’s legacy is very vast, therefore, I have only chosen a few for example. To read more go to: The Whitlam Government’s achievements

A Nation Under Threat

After the protest in the last week in parliament; a fence around parliament has been proposed. However, perhaps like Trump we need a wall.  We need a wall to keep the conservatives, Liberals, libertarians nationalists/Hansonites and right wing policy makers out of our of parliament. It is this group of politicians, who still, 44 years later threaten the legacy of the Gough Whitlam Labor Government.

Every single progressive reform we take for granted in this country, with the exception of Howard’s Gun Reform, was delivered to Australians by Australia’s only Worker’s party – The Australian Labor Party. Imagine what life would be without many of the above reforms. Please think of that before you vote. Vote to protect that. Not to tear it down.

Almost every single one of Gough’s reforms listed above are still under attack by the Liberal/National parties to return Australia to the 1950’s and 60’s. Almost every single one of the reforms listed, have been a focus of funding cuts by the Abbott-Turnbull-(Abbott?) Government, since 2013. 

Subsequent reforms from the previous Labor Government are also under constant attack by the Liberals. NDIS, Gonski and the National Broadband Network to name a few.

If the voting record of the cross bench is anything to go by, further watering down or the complete abolishment of some of Labor’s reforms by the Liberal/Nationals will have the full support of Hanson, Xenophon and Hinch.

The most significant recent attack by the Liberal-National-Hanson-Xenophon-Hinch coalition is the blatant attack on the working class with the ABCC – The Australian Building and Construction Commission.

The ABCC is a national threat to all workers. The ABCC is Turnbull using his limited skill in ‘innovation’ to re-brand John Howard’s Work Choices into a four letter acronym.

For voters, this four letter acronym more than likely triggers memories of looking through the round window, rather than the reality of looking through jail bars if you stop work for an injury or death at work.

I think the media must also be still looking through the round window, because they have outright failed in reporting what the adoption of the ABCC will mean for workers, in their day to day working life.

This legislation which passed in the Senate last week, is a national threat to the health and safety of your wife, husband, son, daughter, uncle, aunty, grandmother, grandfather, cousins and your friends. No one is left unscathed when touched by the ABCC bill. No one.

A society is no longer a fair society when workers do not have the right of protection for their labour and the right of protection for their own lives.

I Refuse to Believe It

In 2017, it’s time for everyone to be like Gough and demand more. It’s time to demand progress.

They say a week is a long time in politics, however, it appears that 20 years since Howard is like a century and 44 years since Gough is like an eternity.

Regardless of the hype about the ‘rise of the alt-right and conservatism’ I refuse to believe that the majority of voters Australia wide have true conservative ideals, where they want to see deep cuts to services and welfare which will further punish those already living in poverty.

As a people, we don’t gloat about how we should increase poverty and homelessness. We don’t have a laugh about how many more elderly pensioners we can push into not affording heating or in my case in QLD air conditioning.

We are a country full of decent and compassionate human beings and we fight against these things. Yet in a sad, twisted way, we, as a nation, also vote for these things. Why?

It only makes the fight harder when voters vote on a single issue, or out of apathy or boredom or are reeled in by populist politicians – and it certainly makes life harder for those most affected.

I refuse to believe that the majority of voters in Australia are committed to Nationalism and the divisive views espoused by Hanson, Christensen and Bernardi.  

I refuse to believe that regardless of what agenda the media pushes for their advertising revenue; that the top priority issue for voters is not ‘what the definition of an Aboriginal is’ or ‘how much further into poverty can we push those on unemployment and pensions’.

I believe that voters are looking for some deep emotion to hang on to. They want political speak abolished, they want straight talking politicians and they want some guts and grit in their politics.

Oh Yeh…I Remember Now

What I do believe is that, just as most voters could not remember what happened in parliament in June, people soon forget the sting and hardship that the Liberal and National Parties Work Choices brought us. I believe this is simply because Labor’s Fair Work Act has redressed the unfairness of Howard’s attack on the worker.

I also believe that because Labor successfully blocked so many of Abbott’s harmful budget measures during the period of the last election, people have not felt the true wrath of what conservatism really means in a post John Howard, Abbott-Turnbull era.

I also believe that a lot of people remember Pauline Hanson for her outspoken manner, but forget the upset, harm and division she caused at dinner tables, at backyard parties and even at the corner store counter back in the 1990’s; simply because they were not a target of her overtly and very loudly spoken racist views.

I believe they forget that John Howard, a Prime Minister many still hold in high esteem on the conservative right, kicked Hanson out of the Liberal party, because her views were too racist. This is despite the fact that Hanson insists that she is not a racist. I also do not believe a conservative Prime Minister like Howard would not make that call lightly.

I believe it will be when people need to actually choose a side in the ‘attack on minorities’ that they will realise the full extent of upset and hurt that will once again be inflicted on our country. All proudly promoted by breakfast television and every media outlet in the country.

Fairfax Media chief photographer, Andrew Meare’s who took the ‘controversial’ photo of George Christensen this week said, “our role as journalists is not to judge but inform.” It is on that note, that I believe this ‘lost value in the art of journalism’ has also contributed to voters turning to other alternative parties and engaging with populist politicians; regardless how harmful their policies and rhetoric may be to society.

I believe this because regardless of how many changes to Abbott’s policies Labor insisted upon before giving support to them and regardless of the stark contrast between the value systems of both parties; the Media chose to judge and paint them as a duopoly, instead of opposing parties, rather than the media doing their job and informing.

The alt-right, apathy, dissatisfaction with politics and a belief the two major parties are the same, does lie to some extent with the major parties. However, this is also largely contributed to a Media that judges, rather than informs. It’s time the media started to report the facts and return to informing the public and reserve the judgements for their own dinner table.

It’s Time for Unity

The Internet age and the focus of user-pays individualism, the stagnation of progress in jobs and industry post the GFC by the Abbott and Turnbull Governments as well as the double dissolution election which gave us the ugly voice of Nationalism – has divided us.

It’s time to be like Gough. It’s time as a country to stand up for a mate.  It’s time as a people we stood with minorities and insist they have a fair go, instead of allowing politicians to make us fearful of them. We are not a fearful people. In tough times, we always show unity and strength.

We can never let any political parties strip us of our values by dividing our communities and turning us against one another. Communities are never strengthened by division.

It’s time to rejoin workers unions, associations, political parties and other groups. It’s time to find like minded people and champion a cause. It’s time to march together in the streets.

It’s time to really feel the energy of your beliefs in solidarity with others, instead of only expressing them behind a keyboard. If you already belong to any of these, 2017 should be your year to ‘bring a friend.’

It only benefits anti-worker parties to have us stand alone and divided.

It’s Time for a True Ideological War

It’s time to bring back grit and guts to politics. It’s time in 2017 for a head to head ideological war between Liberal and Labor. We desperately need this.

To do this, it’s time for the major political parties to re-connect with voters based on their true values.

The Liberal National Coalition should fully champion their Individualism, anti-union, privatisation, small government, pared back public sector, anti-welfare, anti-job creation, free market, user pays values.

The Labor Party should fully champion their pro-worker, pro-union, mixed market, pro-welfare state, pro-job creation, large government, fully supported public sector, collective, democratic socialist values.

People are screaming for change and better choices and 2017 is the year for our Political Leaders to be just like Gough.

It’s time for Shorten and Turnbull to be just like Gough and stir the deepest emotions in every electorate and to stand up and fight – really fight for the future of the people they believe in.

About trishcorry

I love to discuss Australian Politics. My key areas of interest are Welfare, Disadvantage, emotions in the workplace, organisational behaviour, stigma, leadership, women, unionism. I am pro-worker and anti-conservativism/Liberalism. You will find my blog posts written from a Laborist / Progressive Slant.


14 thoughts on “2017 – It’s Time to be like Gough

  1. The legacy of a humanist giant shows that Gough Whitlam was far too good for Australia

    Australia never deserved such a person

    The total ingrates we collectively are means we deserve a totalitarian regime`somewhere crossed between Thatcherism and Joh Bjelke Petersen

    Fraser after his highly illegal coup began dismantling universal health [Medibank} and crippled it so much that Hawke had to remodel it as Medicare

    As Australians who are collectively brainwashed by Murdoch`s control of our MSM we will all get what we deserve

    Growth in homelessness
    Growth in unemployment
    Growth in private prison population

    We are to die on the streets like neglected dogs,kicked mercilessly and repeatedly by corporate police

    Our children are to be for begging crumbs selling themselves {Industrial Age style] for labour,child prostitution and organ harvesting

    This is the road to perdition the Christian Conservatives [LNP/One Nation/NXT/Family First} are taking us on and we don`t have to collectively ask “are we there yet” we have to STFU and do WTF we`re told and like it

    Vale Gough Whitlam on this the 44th year of what`s left of your legacy

    Liked by 1 person

    Posted by Bighead1883 | December 5, 2016, 6:56 am
  2. Reblogged this on Townsville Blog. and commented:
    The Greatest Australian PM who ever held the office, he was for “people” not no tax paying corporations.

    Liked by 1 person

    Posted by townsvilleblog | December 5, 2016, 8:38 am
  3. Trish, you write so passionately I would love to be able to express myself as divinely as you do. All of the above are my sentiments exactly, I don’t believe that Shorten is the man for this job, but then I don’t see many politicians on either side with the guts and commitment to pull the Australian character into the slipstream of this philosophy, a Senator cannot be a Prime Minister, therefore I suggest that Senator Doug Cameron contest a safe Labor seat in NSW and be given all the help he needs to achieve our (yours and mine) needs by bringing the Labor Party and the union movement together for a strike at government in 2019.

    Liked by 1 person

    Posted by townsvilleblog | December 5, 2016, 8:58 am
    • Do you know how the choice of leadership is done in Labor?

      Do you also know there were no contenders to replace Shorten as LOTO?

      Whether we`re in a modern day Greek tragedy or not with the world grasping religious conservatism or will science and facts win out is up to no one but the electors

      We are 1 vote and all we have to do is to convince 1 other to vote with us TB

      I personally had a tally of 3 added to Labor`s vote in the July 2nd election

      Let`s take some personal; responsibility here and work ourselves to a better Australia for all Australians

      Liked by 2 people

      Posted by Bighead1883 | December 5, 2016, 9:09 am
  4. Trish not sure if my previous post worked but here goes. The people are just bloody tired of an economic agenda that reforms them into poverty (history lesson USA took them four decades, Brexit), MSM and corporate Unions (BCA, ACCI, AIG, etc) now want to blame/accuse them as “the populist, the uneducated, have no idea etc voter, it is their creation, the angry disenfranchised voter. They have no idea that the voter is angry at being told “you need to economically reorm to sustain our standard of living” and than they come after all the fought gains of 20th cnetury and all the gains made under a Labor Governments eg where would Western Sydney be today if Gough did not fight for just bloody plumbing to the home, where would Australia be today if Labor listened to the Libs idron lines for telelphony etc) . Worse corporate union and Barons of MSM now want to disown their creation, blaming anybody but themslves on their sustain attack on the hard fought gains of 20th century. Did nobody go wtf, when turnbull loftly taked or Australia as ‘eqalitarina nation blah blah” as he is unwinding the very social fabric and hard fought gains of the nations, forget him giving Australia an edonomy based on 19th century technology and that is just a start. Turnbull likes to use words that sounds great and wonderful too his own ears, but has idea what it means if only the expert yelping pups understood what is being said, it is/was in English.

    For too long Barons of MSM and corporate unions controlled the economic agenda and those that had a real understanding of what economic participation and economic freedom means, ie the shopfloor, the ACTU are called union thugs, really?. The real economic thuggery on standards of living are the chaps with the three piece and leather briefcase that frog march the worker off the shopfloor and not the burly chaps with the high vis vest. They are just trying to protect and hang on what is left of the shopfloor and hard fought gains all in the sights of corporate unions and MSM Baron’s yelping pups. To part borrow from a journo Carl Bernstien “the lowest form of popular culture lack of information, misinformation, disinformation and a contempt for the truth or reality of most peoples lives has overrun real journalism”, they really have no idea or concept and we have them in abundance in Australia, Viva social media you gave us a voice and alerted us that the trickle has been drying up. It took the USA four decades to totally dry up and shut down, here it is happening at an even faster pace in Australia and the so called expert yelping pups occassionally emerges from that rarefied oxygen tent NPC has the termerity to sneer at us as, populist, uneducated, uninformed blah”. Australia, join the union movement before we are on what Abbott referred the soon to be unemployed Holden worker as a liberation and in free fall no safety net to catch you, because corporate unions and Barons of corporate media tells you it is unsustainable. There off my chest needed to be said.


    Posted by isaacandeudo | December 5, 2016, 4:53 pm
    • Hi Isaac. Thanks for your comment. No the first one did not work. I don’t know why. It is not in spam either. I believe the only way forward is to work hard – really hard in 2017 to build solidarity. Labor also needs to use simpler terms. For example, Instead of Anti-Union, he needs to say it as it is – Anti-Worker. There has been a slow erosion since Howard. IMHO Gillard /Rudd did not do enough to promote the necessity of unions either, after Howard tried to destroy them. We are now faced with the same thing under Abbott-Turnbull. It has basically been their only agenda.
      I agree with everything you have said. Please stop by anytime.


      Posted by trishcorry | December 6, 2016, 8:38 am
  5. The magic of GW was time and place

    Liked by 1 person

    Posted by bgoozee | December 11, 2016, 7:15 am
  6. Sorry….continued….Australia was languishing in a blue political miasma that had faded to grey. We have the same today with Liberal and Labour a vanilla mindscape and vision. But I think the next visionary will be, neither Labour nor Liberal but a Humanist who will cut through the Poli-speak, actually talk to the people not through the filter of spin and balance the greed/need decide. That was GW greatest gift he shone where there was no light. The light was not pure but it lit the was to new thinking. (See how thought provoking your article was😊!)


    Posted by bgoozee | December 11, 2016, 7:28 am


  1. Pingback: 2017 – It’s Time to be like Gough | Townsville Blog. - December 5, 2016

  2. Pingback: The Red Window Blog – 2016 in Review | The Red Window - January 1, 2017

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

Trish Corry



I love to discuss Australian Politics. My key areas of interest are Welfare, Disadvantage, emotions in the workplace, organisational behaviour, stigma, leadership, women, unionism. I am pro-worker and anti-conservativism/Liberalism. You will find my blog posts written from a Laborist / Progressive Slant.

Personal Links

View Full Profile →

Enter your email address to follow this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Join 8,059 other followers

Follow me on Twitter

%d bloggers like this: