Sunday, 15 March 2009

Anna and Lawrence - It's about what you can influence

Our two State political leaders are sprouting their respective plans for relieving the impact of the global financial crisis on Queensland.

Realistically, how much can they really do?

The domain of local Government is sewerage, water distribution, garbage, sewerage, traffic control and local public transport.

The Federal Government deals with defence, tax and fiscal policy, foreign affairs, social security, border security, customs and excise and tertiary education.

And State Governments primarily deal with State transport infrastructure, power, water, primary and secondary education, health and law and order.

So why are our Queensland Political Leaders talking about relieving the impact of the global financial crisis when in reality, what ever they do will have limited if any impact.

Prime Minister Rudd and Treasurer Swann quite reasonably point out there is little if we in Australia can do about what is happening in financial markets overseas. Our economy is so small in the wider scheme of things that we are being taken and will continue to be taken along for the economic ride.

Sure, we have had several stimulus packages and while it is claimed these measure have had an effect, measuring the effect is virtually impossible.

Queensland, and all other States are a further rung down the global ladder, so why do our State political leaders think they can do what all other National Governments the world over are failing to do?

Both leaders are making promises around health; however our public health system is in such a mess, it will take a decade or more to really achieve anything. Besides neither party want to say too much about Health that they can be held accountable for at a future date.

There has been passing attention to education and infrastructure, and water is not as high on our awareness barometers since recent rains in the South East.

So what about Law and Order? I am not aware of any substantive reference to Law and Order during the campaign. Although I have not seen any outputs from today’s campaign launches.

I had a call from a close friend last Friday. His 70 year old uncle had been attacked and robbed just near his home in a major regional city. The attack like all attacks was cowardly. It was also cruel and vicious and involved what appears to be acid being thrown in his face. He is still unconscious and in intensive care having been transferred to Brisbane.

It is a sickening act in every way.

Law and Order is not just about policing and jails. It is also about education and reform programs for first time and juvenile offenders.

From what I have seen, there has been little if anything mentioned to do with law and order during the campaign. It obviously isn’t sexy, or is it a case of if it hasn’t effected me, it doesn’t matter, therefore there are few votes to be won.

Time for our State Leaders to get back to the issues they can genuinely and meaningfully influence and leave the global financial crisis to those who can do something about that too.

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