The link above is a thinking allowed article by Phil Mercer, Phil had sent me the unabridged version so here it is. I understand the heralds space for thinking allowed is about 500+ words, Phils is a little longer than that.
Reading this is a reason i know i couldn’t be in a political party, all the BS is just to much, I’m sure i couldn’t put up with it?
Phil “Page 5, Page 5, Thinking Allowed from the insightful and provocative Fremantle Herald, edited down from 1500 words to 527, still kinda got the gist.”
Anyway here is Phils full article;
Gary Gray takes the fall for Fremantle’s Union Queens
Rockingham’s Labor stalwart and Shadow Minister for Resources is having his Parliamentary career targeted by a concerted attack by the MUA/CFMEU Super Union and United Voice.
It seems an unlikely fate for an articulate warrior that has been such an asset to the ALP brand and a heart on his sleeve Labor man.
Gary Gray’s problems come from his refusal to sign the candidate’s pledge which dictates obedience to the State Secretary and the Campaign Director in campaigning for the office. Incredibly they use the actual work obey, not discuss or co-operate but O-B-E-Y OBEY. I haven’t met one Fremantle female who would allow that stipulation in their marriage contract let alone a work agreement. Clive Palmer could only dream of dictation.
The document is quite emphatic going on to request “I will act as the State Secretary and the Campaign Director direct me in carrying out my duties.” It begs the question, why would anybody sign such a document? And why when you are on the Federal executive, when you should be democratically voting in the interests of the people are you beholden to the State Secretary – (The Great Leader). In that situation anything could feasibly happen, a fair and just person the likes perhaps of a Simon Crean, Kim Beazley or Martin Ferguson could be replaced by any wild card. Do we really want to inadvertently endorse the views of a Joe McDonald or Dave Noonan whilst voting for the wholesome appeal of Mel Parke.
In the lead-up to the last Federal Election the Fremantle Herald graciously ran an article by myself urging the Browse Basin gas reserves to be processed onshore and the unprecedented billion dollar royalties to be spent on indigenous prosperity. LABOR LOSES BLUE. The project has subsequently gone offshore and state revenue lost despite a die hard, desperate and futile fight by Mr C Barnett.
I really was not expecting a response mainly because of Fremantle’s ingrained support of indigenous advancement and really what profile do I have? Just another pleb out there in the Valley, it’s the first time I have ever written to a newspaper and I had to check myself, or at least become comfortable with early onset crack-pot-ness.
I was truly flattered that none less than the current Minister for Resources and inexplicably Small Business wrote a passionate and reasoned defense. OFFSHORE JOBS A GRAY AREA. It left out any reference to Indigenous royalties, but nonetheless was an informative piece written by somebody with in depth knowledge that gave the public insights to the decision.
What was telling however was no comment from the then Fremantle based Minister for International Development Melissa Parke. Whilst the gist is it’s Gray’s area, the article was in The Fremantle Herald not the Rockingham Community News, in the lead up to an election the views of some misguided Liberal hippie are hardly his concern.
“I have never give in to bullies and I will not now”. Is Mr Gray’s statement that spiked my interest, because he forcefully seems to be acting upon it. If you are one of the thousands of construction workers who bristles at the totalitarian ‘no ticket no start signs’ or Coles employees who have had their wages traded off by the AWU then you’d be impressed too.
Depressingly it’s exactly Mr Gray’s stance on offshore builds that has him in the sights of the cashed up Super Unions wanting to terminate him. These are the same unions that support so generously the Political careers of Ms Parke, McGurk and Ludlum. In an act of Political suicide Gary Gray has pushed the self destruct button by provocatively blacking out parts of his Candidates Pledge, is Rockingham’s Sam Worthington casting for a remake of Jerry McGuire?
What would posses such a bespectacled Labor achiever to buck the system so courageously? The answer also lies in his attacks from the Electrical Trade Union. This being the mob that spent millions promoting the lie that Canning Candidate Andrew Hastie and his troops were war criminals and not regular members of the ADF. Perhaps he could not stand the thought of seeing those Anti Chinese Free Trade Agreement billboards parked outside his office and begrudgingly having to accept the laundered campaign money from his Union masters.
To add insight into the benefits of the China FTA is exactly the reason we need more politicians like our plucky hero.
The ETU’s cherry picked misinformation from the heavy volumes of the ChAFTA is “removes the requirement for mandatory skills assessment for ten occupations including: Electrician (Special Class)…” In isolation it sounds truly scary a little bit like “you have cancer” leave out the ‘but you will still live to 110’ bit and it’s not an accurate statement. The reason requirements like this are in the document goes to the heart of any trade agreement and will always benefit the more sophisticated country.
If for example Fiona Wood was sick of her name being tarnished from bad press about Australia’s most impressive hospital and wanted to manufacture her patented plastic skin in China, helping millions around the world and international affection for Team WA, then the only way to do this would be to send the only technicians in the world capable of setting up those miraculous machines. That’s right the Special Class Electricians from good old WA!
The ETU and Melissa Parke on the other hand are campaigning tooth and nail for our sons and daughters not to be able to engage with the world. They are saying that these same unique technicians will have to attend China’s version of TAFE and re-do their qualifications in Mandarin, and of course visa versa for the world wanting to bring its innovations here. Would Fremantle resident Ben Elton be forced to attend WAAPA until we thought his humour was properly Australian enough, or would we rather embrace his overseas success. The rider of course is that the agreement does not affect our immigration or visa policies so the protections have always been in place. I’ll also concede that such complex agreements will never be perfect, but what in life is? Things can always be tweaked, there’s always another election. Where is the thrill of watching our children be challenged and prosper rather than shielded away on a Pacific/Indian Ocean island? Why should our offshore business pioneers live with the fear of their technology and companies being taken from them by unscrupulous Chinese officials?
Melissa Parke let Gary Gray publicly defend her from my claims about the benefits of onshore versus offshore Gas Processing, now The MUA, CFMEU, ETU, and Simone McGurk’s United Voice (formerly HSU) have lined up to execute Gary Gray’s political career. With friends like that who needs enemies?
Tragic that Gary’s best defence comes from the ALP member in Marrickville NSW. “They (Labor WA) are controlled by a set of left-wing militant unions who seem intent on expelling a politician who, I think, in fairness and speaking in a bipartisan way, has the respect really of all his colleagues within the parliament, including on the government side for the work that he has done as a minister.” Anthony Albanese told reporters in Canberra. And certainly not from his almost hostile Rockingham neighbour Mark McGowan who pointed out that the pledge has not changed in 20 years, great!
It’s interesting to see that nobody else seems to feel the confliction that is keeping Gazza up at night, as he pointed out; the state leader did not have to “ride a political horse, which is heading in two directions” like he did. Again it would seem that Ms Parke has no problem galloping along Michelle Payne style on her heavily backed steed.
My affection for the maverick Gary is only confused by the thought going through my head as I attended my teenage hero’s book launch at Notre Dame recently, it’s all very good listening to your principled stand on poker machines Peter Garret, but in the end you were a Frontbencher of a Party that owns a hell of a lot of Poker Machines!
Similarly Mr Gray you joined a Party that lets the Unions collect money from unwilling workers in the most blatant and aggressive manner whilst running a protection racket with the bosses.
If you run with the mob, sooner or later you will get a horse’s head in your bed, one way to stop it going in two directions I suppose.
Sincerely, well done, good luck. Lets hear what Melissa has to say?