LABOR PAINS: John Faulkner is not the Messiah complains angry ALP insiders

faulks Outgoing Labor Defence minister John Faulkner gets the best press of anyone in Club Fed. It’s difficult to find a single critical reference to him in media archives.

But Labor insiders tell VEXNEWS they see him as the most over-rated senior Labor figure in living memory.

They point to a recent High Court of Australia decision which invalidated Howard government measures that tightened up electoral enrolment. That meant that around 100,000 people who’d enrolled the week after the election was called will be allowed to vote. But VEXNEWS understands there are hundreds of thousands more excluded.

It wasn’t Labor that ran the court case, it was the left-wing on-line ginger group GetUp! which is usually stridently anti-Labor except when they think their criticisms might elect the Liberals.

“GetUp! is Australia’s biggest circle jerk, cutting ads that no-one sees, preaching to its already feral left-wing choir of the disaffected and privileged,” one Labor moderate explained to VEXNEWS.

In an extraordinary spray, a senior observer paid out on Faulkner and vented some serious frustration felt at a high-level about the highly-rated senior minister who has been often considered the wise and calm voice of reason in an easily-panicked universe of excitable staffers and hangers-on:

“But it’s (Get Up) done a bloody good job in ensuring more Australians could enrol and it’s really enough to make you wonder where the f*ck has this over-rated, pompous, know-all John Faulkner been? He was minister responsible for this for most of the life of the government and did nothing to ensure young people could enrol. This is not just about basic equity and democracy, there’s also a political dividend for Labor. And where was he? Chasing around backbenchers to put absurdly self-loathing disclosures on their Christmas cards and desperately trying to implement the ABC/Fairfax agenda of banning corporate and union donations to political parties.”

If Gillard loses the election, it will be by a handful of votes in a handful of seats. Faulkner gets to ride around on the PM’s plane and play elder statesman and play consiligiere when the truth is he might have single-handedly cost her victory by not reforming the enrolment laws. He’s all sizzle and no sausage, mate. He’s the most over-rated politician I’ve seen in Canberra. There’s nothing like it. He’s got them all conned, the Gallery, caucus colleagues, PMO ass-clowns, they all think Faulks can turn Canberra tap water into a woody chardonnay.

The most noticeable thing Faulkner’s been involved with in the campaign is debate preparation where he played Abbott in Gillard’s rehearsals. That’s quite appropriate when you think about the many hundreds of thousands of Labor voting and Labor-preferencing young Australians Faulkner’s failings have caused not to be enrolled to vote. Loughnane should send him an honorary Liberal party membership ticket.

The best thing Gillard could do for future ALP campaigns is actually to throw John Faulkner out of her VIP flight at about 10,000 feet. He’s a f*cking disgrace and an oxygen thief. And yes you can quote me but no names, a man’s gotta eat.”



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33 responses to “LABOR PAINS: John Faulkner is not the Messiah complains angry ALP insiders

  1. Vexnewbs can’t hack The Greens

    Falkner the “most over-rated senior Labor figure in living memory”?

    I’m pretty sure that’s Graham Richardson.

    Nice of you to run yet another article that’s based completely on an unattributed diatribe.

    If you had any guts at all you’d name names, but you don’t, so you won’t.

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  3. Get get julia up

    The Get up high court victory may be one of the key election changers in this tight contest.

    It has not got a lot of attention from our personality obsessed baby boomer journos – but the enrollment issue should have been acted on far earlier by government – yes it is in the ALP and Greens interests that these people vote – it is also in the nations interest too.

    The exclusion of these voters was always just another sneaky trick by the cynical self serving libs.

  4. time to wise up

    Some senior people in the left of labor need to wise up to political realities.

    We have a lopsided democracy where the libs are just whores for hire for big business.

    Unlike the UK and Canada there are no real voices for small l liberals.

    If organised labour cannot fund labor and get some say then we are all going down the toilet fast.

    There is no neutral small ‘l’ liberal political agenda in a joint like Australia where racists and vested business will try to pull down a centralist government like Rudd’s when given half a chance.

    Australia is a place of brut politics where billionaire miners will take whatever they can.

    Australian democracy is not a nice middleclass book club like Faulkner and other soft left types assume.

    News Ltd, Packers and the other powerful figures would love to put in place some clown like Abbott.

    Everyone loves a puppet.

    Winning govt means we need to get our message across (and that take dollars) and get our people voting.

    Faulkner and his ilk forget that social democracy hangs by a very think thread of union involvement that can create a political machine.

    He owes his life and his fat pension to that machine.

    The Greens have their use with 12% of the vote but we must get the majority out voting on election day and only the labor movement and the ALP can do that.

    Just stop and think about what Howard would have done if he had not been stopped by Rudd and the your rights at work campaign.

    You would be living in a fully deregulated labour market complete with a massive guest workforce and unions financial broken down with punitive fines and laws.

    The ABCC in its current form annoys unions – but it’s final purpose was de-unionisation and the complete deregulation of the labour market.

    The election of Rudd stopped that process but it will be started again under Abbott.

    Niceties about electoral funding are so much baloney when we face a conservative party that uses racism and the scape goating of boat people to mask its ongoing war on the living standards of the majority of the country and when it is funded solely by big business interests.

    There is no social contract with the liberals just a massive fraud.

    So let’s stop the nonsense and nit picking of the labor party machine and remember that the unions, the ALP and the greens for all their massive faults are the only way wage earners can get dealt back in in this lopsided so called democracy.

    Even the Greens need the labor machine and the unions to implement even one single green policy.

  5. Flopsy Western

    John Faulkner, when compared with his ALP colleagues, is indeed an intellectual giant. Not really all that difficult when the vast majority of the Labor Party can only aspire to mediocrity.

    BTW – since when has GetUp been “stridently anti-ALP”? Your grip on reality is slipping.

    What a joke this site has become. It has become increasingly obvious that playing out factional disputes is your #1 priority – that and defending grubs like the Theophanous brothers.

    For serious political commentary and debate – nothing to see here.

  6. Anonski

    Blame Faulkner for the pending Labor defeat if you want too.

    However there is more than enough blame to go around for Gillard, Rudd, Swan, Arbib, Bitar and many others.

    It seems that one of Krudd’s favourite games, the “Blame Game” is going to be often played in ALP circles in the weeks and months ahead.

  7. Sydneysider

    The Government tried to change the laws to allow young people to vote. The Coalition blocked the legislation. Get your facts.

  8. intellectual sloth with style

    Faulkner’s flirtation with the high end print media is just the twittering of over-fed parrots in their gilded cages.

    Yes they are all too clever by half.

    I wish the Australian newspaper had devoted has much press time to the less than 3% of schools projects that went over funded to the appalling state of our government schools for 50 years. No news ltd is a sad offshoot of the libs.

    It is embarrassing to show vistors from overseas the state of our government schools – but has the national paper, the Australian, had any national pride to even devote substantial press space to the neglect of our national education system under labor or liberal governments. No their elite readers would be bored.

    Of course rich MPs on all sides and their wealthy media admirers will not have to suffer the lack of investment in such schools – no they can only reel in horror when too much is spent on a school hall in the outer Barkoo or the north shore when the real ongoing scandal is that so little was spent for so many decades across the whole nation.

    John Falkner had a a nice turn of phrase but let’s not get that confused with real nation building and real intelligence.

    Under Rudd we finally saw some nation building but it is in danger of being wound back by the comic fool Abbott and a weak minded media that lacks the intellectual rigor to demand the very basics from a modern government…a decent health system, regulated labor, fast internet connections and schools that work.

    It is hard to comprehend that a nation that rolled out the largest and most successful post war migration program and the snowy mountains scheme – now worries about a handful of boat people and a handful of school halls.

    We have more resources and options than most nations on earth but our political and media elite appear to lack the brains to use them to address climate change and the other challenges like faster internet access and acsess to good education for all.

    Laurie Oakes may be right about this being an election of pigmies but they are products of a pigmie-like media.

    ‘Ban the burka’ politics is the final contribution of the liberal nation party to the national debate.
    Does the future of our kids job, our economy and our housing rest on the wearing of a handful of burkas?

    We are fast becoming a pigmie nation fed the tissue thin lies of pigmie politicians by a compliant and brain dead pigmie media.

    And yes ain’t it grand that John Faulkner has a good legal mind, a mellow voice and an educated accent.

    But is his statesman like style and presence simply like lipstick on a pig?

    Our political system is still just 100% pork.

  9. dealtime

    Good points made here about Faulkner.

    Should’ve been a deal done with Xenophon and SenatorSteve on voting but there wasn’t because Faulkner and others were too busy basking in the glow of the Rudd.

    Faulkner is not all bad but to be fair his last three years were wasted and indulgent.

  10. dealtime

    Xenophon and SenatorSteve were open to deal. It wasn’t seriously pursued meaning as many as 1 million Australians don’t participate in the democratic process.

    What’s more, the only reason Faulkner got good press was his serial leaking.

  11. SIR JOHN

    any man who costs gillard governement should be knighted
    arise sir john we dont want her so good on you
    we secretly suspect that you know all the pitfalls re real Julia and its not such a pretty picture the thought of her government prevailing at the next election is enough to make anyone see red
    sir Johh should consider himself on par with the other sir john kerr both men good at getting rid of lousy ALP governments

  12. Anonymous

    yep, ‘time to wise up’ all a massive consipiracy against Labor by big business, racists, the CIA and maybe even the Chinese to keep Labor out office.

    The ABS probably even manipulated the economic growth figures, low unemployment, high immigration (and cohesion) figures under eleven years of John Howard. The AEC probably even double counted some first preference Liberal votes in marginals in 1998.

    Under compulsory voting the electorate get the Government they deserve, except that if the elect a Conservative Government according to our friends on the left…

  13. anon

    Bi-Polar Bill is actually the ‘most over-rated senior Labor figure in living memory’.

  14. Zeno

    there is only one question that is needed to be asked, all the rest is you want a religious crank, a fundamentalist, catholic taliban running the country. i rest my case.

  15. anon

    You think that John Faulkner is over-rated, do not think so, have a look at the faceless backroom boys, Williamson for one and then there is little Bill – ready and willing to do Julia over.

    Come on, he is one person the ALP needs

  16. Anonski

    I hear that Bi-Polar Bill could be the next Opposition Leader after the election.

    Would anyone want Bi-Polar Bill running the country? That is the real question that will haunt the ALP is it embarks on a long stint in Opposition.

  17. No way

    There is no way Bi-Polar Bill will get the role as Opposition Leader. He would be just like Latham – but worse.

  18. Rosky

    Don’t be so mean to my great mate, Billy-Bob Shorten.

  19. Canberra Press Gallery Journo

    Whoever is sending this article out to the entire Canberra press gallery, thanks… it just gives us more cannon fodder either way.

  20. Anon

    Big call to suggest that Billy-Bob Shorten would be a worse Opposition Leader than Latham.

  21. Knife & Faulk

    Andy, you forgot to mention that it was Faulkner’s brilliant policy initiative to hand oversight of government advertising to the Auditor-General. Inspired. Between that and knocking off MPs electorate printing allowances, Faulkner has put himself in the front of the line for an AC in Abbott’s first Australia Day honours gong-fest.

  22. DemocracyATwork

    The organsition and structure of Getup is an issue. Exctaly who decides what issues and policies are adopted? Getup has received significant donations and funding yet ity is unclear how those exenses are managed. A number of community issues are not addressed.

    GetUp has major issues facing its future adminstration and runs the risk of becoming partisan in its approach.

  23. DemocracyATwork

    [If Gillard loses the election, it will be by a handful of votes in a handful of seats. Faulkner gets to ride around on the PM’s plane and play elder statesman and play consigliere when the truth is he might have single-handedly cost her victory by not reforming the enrolment laws]

    The same can be said for the ALP members of the JSCEM.

    Labor is set to lose a Senate seat to the Greens primarily as a result of a flaw in the way the Senate vote is counted. The Greens will benefit from Liberal preferences which ate inflated and transferred from One Nation. DLP and Family First. The system is seriously flawed in its execution.

  24. LeftRightOut

    Not a lot of facts being put forward by the labor hacks here… Howard changed these laws for one reason, not to prevent kids from voting, but to prevent highly motivated leftist groups from filing bogus enrolment forms. These remain unvetted on polling day, and the term “vote early, vote often” becaomes a reality. Ask people who know (these things remain largely unpublished) about how many false electoral enrolments are received in the run-up to an election.
    Anyone who thinks GetUp! are “anti-Labor” are indeed confused. They try to “appear” to be independent, but look at the names of the people who started the “organisation” (all ALP stalwarts), and those who remain involved (they ahve annual reports, you can check it). For a journo to assert that they’re anti-Labor makes me suspicious… the audience here is not the uninformed masses, these people are engaged. Don’t treat them/us like mugs please.

  25. anon

    Bi-Polar Bill is Latham without the intellect.

  26. Anonski

    Latham without intellect! ROTFL! Ouch.

  27. BS Detector

    Faulkner is massively overrated. Robert Ray did all of the real work in Senate Estimates, Faulkner just went along for the ride, with his usual arrogant turd routine.

    Having said that, it’s not too hard to guess who wrote the rant above – it’s Senator Feeney. Check out Feeney’s Christmas Card from last year if you want a real laugh and an nice ‘up yours’ to KRudd and his stupid changes to MP’s printing entitlements.

  28. Canberra Press Gallery Journo

    wonders when Mark Latham or Laurie Oakes beat each other to this “massive” scoop. I can’t believe some of the mainstream press aren’t reporting on this.

    It has to be reported that Senator Feeney is responsible for this…


    Why dont any of you give Mark Latham a break he is simply trying to do his job none of you are perfect nor are you Walter Cronkite doyenne of the media
    he Latham is an ex ALP leader so has had valuable expertise
    nothing he did to Tony Abbott was off well is TONY complaining
    Ms Gillard is the one that couldnt handle Mark alright for her to attack Krudd but media darling Gillard must not be spoken to by her former Boss Mark why please explain!
    this incident reaffirms that TONY Abott should be the next PM well he handled Mark with panache!
    ps how many times would journalists say ambush Mr Keating
    so media stop what you are doing to Latham let the man do his job! So are some media jealous of Latham his unique standing?

  30. Keating's Clock Antiquirian

    I wonder why SENATOR FEENEY made these anonymous allegations on this web site of all places?

    Why not go out like everybody else has, and tell someone who can actually do something constructive about your concerns? eg Dennis Shanahan, Laurie Oakes, Michelle Grattan, Hugh Riminton, Mark Riley, Chris Uhlmann, Annabel Crabb, Tony Jones et al. All of these journos are CRYING out for interesting stories to report on. Go and tell them, SENATOR FEENEY.

    And why not just go to MARK LATHAM on Channel Nine’s Sixty Minutes, and tell him. He’ll talk to you. Word is he’s talking to a lot of people. So don’t be afraid SENATOR FEENEY, just go out and express your concerns, a bit like Rudd has, and make sure they don’t reveal that you’re the source of the leak… easy.

  31. No names

    To the above memo writer, STOP using Paul Keating’s name in a slanderous fashion. You’ve been warned!

  32. Garett's Mind in overdrive

    When will Julia Gillard stop the leaks on her leaky boat?

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