On Saturday, Labor not only held its four seats under contest, but increased the margin on all of them. The party and its leader Bill Shorten have strengthened their position and are now in a better position for the coming federal election.
This is not only good for Labor. It is good for everyone who stands against the callous and openly pro big end of town regime occupying government in Canberra. After Saturday, Malcolm Turnbull and his gang are in deeper trouble, and their downfall is now well and truly on the cards.
In this event, Labor is going to be the next government, and whether it is or is not up to delivering a real alternative time will tell.
It remains, that for all who want to want a political terrain, which is more suitable towards shifting away from the era of economic stagnation and the incremental attacks on previously hard won rights; who want an end to the fall in the wages share of national income; for those having to live on Centrelink payments to be treated with the respect due to all human beings; an end to rampant corruption and the massive corporate tax evasion industry; action on the threat of global warming, and much more, the fall of this government is the first step to moving forward into the future.
How this journey can be made successfully is a matter for ongoing debate and action The starting point is that Australia wants a change in direction, and the experience of working to bring this about, together with the extent of the capacity to understand what the experience tells us, will provide answers.
For now, Malcolm Turnbull and his side have experienced a significant setback that can be taken advantage of, and used to prepare for a bigger victory. Turnbull all but admitted the truth of this by disappearing for a while and then coming out and promising a policy makeover. He knows that his own position and that of the government he leads, has become more precarious, and that survival depends on creating a more palatable image.
It is significant that in an election campaign, characterised by an even more massive propaganda campaign than usual, conducted by the monopoly controlled private media, working in tandem with the push by the Business Council of Australia and the Liberal Party linked Institute for Public Affairs, enough people saw it for what it was, and this made all the difference. And it happened in some of the more conservative parts of Australia.
The propaganda campaign represented the wealthy and powerful few percent behind the Liberal National Party government, seeking to push its policies even further down the same track. They are in no mood to make any compromises. Even though Labor’s promises are fairly modest, this is still beyond the pale for them.
They sought to politically destroy Bill Shorten, publishing stories of disquiet within the ranks, conducting dodgy polls, promising an electoral route and the end of the Labor leader. None took this to a higher level than the Murdoch stable. The best laid of plans came crashing down.
Opposition to the present regime is one thing. Moving from here to make a real change is something else. The journey has only begun, and Australia working out a clearer vision of what it wants, is the next step. One thing is certain. The way ahead, must involve government that is for people first, and which takes on the unfair privileges of a few, to meet the needs of the majority.