Saturday, 9 May 2015

The Name

In light of my first post, the origins of the name of this blog should be fairly clear. The left, in the form of a Miliband-led Labour and the Greens, suffered a crushing defeat in the election just days ago. Government and politics in its current form is unacceptable and the only appropriate course of action is to begin the fightback as soon as possible.

That's not all there is to it though. "Fightback!" was the name of a policy and campaign document put forward by John Hewson and the Liberal Party of Australia preceding the 1993 federal election. After 10 years in which the Hawke and Keating Labor governments had pursued an agenda of privatisation, deregulation and "microeconomic reform", this was an attempt to outflank the incumbent Prime Minister Paul Keating from the right. It called for a Goods and Services Tax (essentially VAT), significant cuts to taxes for the wealthy and middle class, reductions in government spending, privatisation and much more. It was, in essence, a fairly radical neo-liberal wishlist: 650 pages of right-wing wonkery. After the shock defeat of Hewson's party at the '93 election it was called "the longest suicide note in history" and its heartless and difficult to understand policies were considered a large factor in the Liberals' lack of electoral appeal. Despite its failure, this kind of attitude to policy and analysis is what I feel the left needs to both embrace and convince people they are capable of. Wonkery and compassion are not incompatible, and that is what this blog will aim to show.

More importantly though, it's called "the Fightback" because at some point I want to be told to drop the "the": just "Fightback", it's cleaner. Then it will make billions of dollars. One can only hope...

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