Bartlett's Blog

Andrew Bartlett has been active in politics for over 20 years, including as a Queensland Senator from 1997-2008. This blog started in 2004 and reflects his own views, independent of any political party or organisation.

Rocking (or popping) against Howard

Getting up on stage to play a couple of short sets (4-5 songs) of music as a support to Frenzal Rhomb and The Herd was a nice change from straight election campaigning, although they were both Rock against Howard shows, so there was obviously a bit of a political flavour there.

I think we managed to acquit ourselves OK, help get the message out about the benefits of changing the Government, and had an OK time as well. All in all a fun and worthwhile thing to do (although I noted the Sunday Telegraph slagged me off for having a ‘Peter Pan syndrome’, I guess because it’s pathetic to have 40 year olds performing on stage. Someone should tell Neil Diamond before he gets here on his upcoming tour).

My ceaseless and shameless plugging of the top value, 34 track, Rock against Howard double CD will have to cease (only $20 though), as the new Nick Cave disc has come out (also a double album by coincidence). For a good interview, have a read of http://www.theage.com.au/articles/2004/09/17/1095320941733.html?oneclick=true I will now refer to this with tedious regularity instead.

Managed to watch one of the semi-finals this weekend – Brisbane Lions make it to another grand final. I’m not sure how they’ll go against Port Power, who seemed primed for a strong performance, but it would be dangerous to write them off. I note the usual attacks on Brisbane’s ‘favoured status’ are coming out again because of the extra retention allowance support. It seems to me that, even for people that aren’t into sport, the Lions are an amazing example of what a group of people can achieve when they are willing to sacrifice short-term individual enrichment for a longer-term collective goal..

Even though I think the criticisms of the retention allowance are a crock, the extra amount is insignificant compared to what many of the players have sacrificed in potential individual earnings in exchange for staying together as a team chasing the goal of a premiership, and then the more challenging (but even more rewarding) goal of consecutive premierships. To just discount all of that sacrifice by sniping away about a relatively small and quite justifiable retention allowance is quite insulting.

Still, if other clubs seriously allow themselves to believe that that is the reason the Lions have done so well, they will be less likely to do well themselves because they won’t be acknowledging what really needs to be done to be successful.

The Grand Final could bring forth intense pre-election rivalry in the Democrat camp. I’ve managed to have a couple of year’s fun ribbing Natasha Stott Despoja about the Power failures of the past finals series. I’ve no doubt she’ll be itching to return the favour if the result goes her way next weekend. We’ll soon find out I guess.

I don’t think it will be until after the Grand Final is over that many voters will really start making decisions about how to vote.Visits to Qld, NSW and Victoria coming up over the next few days. Some important policy events too – I expect I’ll be doing more on Education and there’s the report into James Hardie’s action coming out to, which deserves to get some significant attention.

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Mini Posts

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