above: Daniel Andrews' convincing win for Victorian State Labor provides a window for change: hopefully a opportunity that he will make the most of
Incidentally the ‘small government mentality’ – with all its consequences – appears to be prevalent at a Federal Labor level as well. A long-time member of the Victorian Socialist Left, it would be well for Andrews to publicly adopt the cause of proportionately increased, fairly structured and progressive social expenditure.
It is also regrettable that Andrews Labor has provided for its promise on level-crossings through privatisation of the Port of Melbourne. Definitely it was smart politics; and the role of ‘smart politics’ in the Andrews Labor victory should not be understated. But arguably inferior cost structures (including profit margins) will now flow on to the broader economy over the long term. This is a ‘once-off’ shot to public revenue that once implemented cannot be reversed. There is a comparison, here, with Abbott’s privatisation of Medibank Private. Although that policy will have specific ramifications: creating a near-private monopoly in private health insurance, with the market-dominance of the newly-private player working against the interests of consumers. Also hundreds of millions will be lost to the public in revenue every year.
Under Joan Kirner curriculum reform was a top priority. So too should it be under the Andrews Victorian Labor Government.