Politician of the Week – Barry O'Farrell

New South Wales politics is set to change, and Barry O’Farrell is front and centre in taking apart the Labor government.

There is an article about him in the SMH that has some brilliant quotes that makes him this weeks choice for the Whaleoil Politician of the Week award.

“Politics has virtually buggered this state,” he muses. “By that I mean that we have increasingly had decisions made on the basis of buying votes.”

“The old politics of smear and fear and untruths is the past,” O’Farrell tells the cameras. “It’s not the future of the state.”

Even Noreen Hay, sent to the backbench over the same wild celebrations in her office in 2008, may lose Wollongong despite her 25 per cent margin. “The evil queen,” O’Farrell calls her. “She’s old Labor, she deserves to lose.”

He also shows some smarts when it comes to real performance issues of ministers rather than made up scandals that have no relation on their abilities. This is a lesson that Labour in new Zealand needs to look very closely at.

Not on O’Farrell’s list of disgraced Labor ministers from down this way is David Campbell, the minister for transport until Channel Seven filmed him leaving a gay bathhouse last May. “Even in NSW politics there should be some lines,” O’Farrell says. “Whilst I would have sacked David Campbell for many things – the F3 debacle, his management of the rail system – what he ultimately resigned over was a personal issue.

“I do know I live in a state in which politics is incredibly brutal at times – a state in which over the last decade you think of the worst thing a government could do or a minister could do and it suddenly materialises on the front page of a newspaper – but his issue was not about the performance of his duties, and ultimately that’s what matters.”

That attitude shows a refreshing approach to politics. Instead of trawling through his opponents garbage and business and personal dealings he looks at their political management and portfolio management.


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  • thor42

    A *very* refreshing attitude. NZ politicians, take note – we are f**king SICK of the vote-buying approach here.
    That goes for the corrosive influence of the unions too.

  • chiefsfan73

    Kristina Keneally is toast. Though it is nice to see a female polly who doesn’t have a face akin to the south end of a north bound camel (clarkenfhurer springs to mind) or a voice that has you longing to sit next to a jet engine (Gillard for example), Keneally is the public face of another Labour party, out of steam. A party like so many Labour parties before them that has thought its right was to govern, that thought the publics money was to be spent as it were its own.
    Keneally all but conceded defeat some weeks ago when she tried to talk up what she (who was installed by the the NSW union movement after they gave Rees the shove) would do for NSW. She felt despite the clear and continued failure of NSW Labour, she would be different. A real tui billboard. I may be labour, but I’m not like the rest of them… Yeah Right.
    O’Farrell is on the money. He doesn’t even have to be. A three legged arthritic donkey with a poor sense of direction could win this race. Its goodbye to another failed state Labour gummint, and even more pressure on a failing federal labour.
    Gillard will now have to fight a war on 3 fronts. From within, where Kevin Rudd is like a weeping boil that she can ill afford to lance, A resurgent Coalition, given ammunition by Labour who insist on a carbon tax, we all know will make no difference. cunning readers will note Gillard now calls it a price on carbon (not tax), finally she now has two major state governments who are not labour.
    This will be the real test. Howard handled Labour led state governments fairly well. However he had none of the other problems Gillard does, and he never knifed a sitting PM, a fact many Australians are still not happy about, on both sides of politics.

  • Actually chiefsfan Fanta Pants is fighting on at least one more front – WA hates her. It has gone for the Coalition, and the miners want her (and Swan’s) head on a pike.

    The Labor gummint in SA is illegitemate, a minority gummint propped up by watermelons the Premier said he wouldn’t deal with.

    I can only hope O’Farrell lives up to the hype, and not turn into Mr Invisible the way Ted Baillieu has here in the Democratic People’s Socialist Republic of Victoria.

  • chiefsfan73

    Good call Te Gantt Guy. You are spot on about Baillieu. I do have a small amount of sympathy though. Brumby locked us into the most rediculous contract with the Desal plant. Him and that little gimp Holding should be sharing a cell with Bubba for what they have done there. MYKI is another excellent example of why Labour should never be able to rule here again. MYKI was never going to deliver a thing to the regions, yet we will all have to pay for that as well. She should be doing time too.

    I bet her and Holding both have cushy consulting jobs to prop up their meagre (read exorbatent) parliamentary super.

    By way of example of the scale of the Brumby govts incompetence the burj khalifa in Dubai was built for less and open for business in less time than it took the Labour luddites in Victoria to deliver a fully not functioning [email protected]#king ticketing system.