Can we trust the polls?

Are Neilson and Newspoll giving inaccurate polling results?

Can we trust the polls?

Fairfax-Neilson polling has shown that Prime Minister Kevin Rudd has failed to improve the Labor Party’s standing in the crucial state of Queensland prior to this Saturday’s Federal Election. Seven out of 10 Queensland residents surveyed think that Tony Abbott will be the next Prime Minister. Labor is trailing the Coalition 47 per cent to 53 per cent on a two-party preferred basis, while Clive Palmer’s Palmer United Party (PUP) is polling as strongly as the Greens, with the primary vote at eight per cent (Labor is only at 31 per cent).

But recently media outlets have been questioning both the relevance and the accuracy of the polls. It has been noted that, although 70 per cent of Queenslanders expect Labor to lose the election on Saturday, it isn’t because they object to Rudd as Prime Minister. Almost two-thirds of Queenslanders polled stated that they had already decided how they were going to vote before Julia Gillard stepped down as Prime Minister in June, even though the numbers have been attributed to Rudd.

But the biggest flaw in the polling system is that millions of voters are being ignored. One-in-five Australians does not use a landline – they are mobile phone-only users. The number of people who only use mobile phones has grown by 20 per cent in the past year alone, and both Neilson and Newspoll are ignoring these voters.

Most mobile phone-only users are city-based renters under 35 years of age. Other mobile phone-only users include retirees travelling around Australia. EssentialResearch, which allows these Australians to be included in the polls by running its political polls online, has labor polling at 50 per cent, a significantly better result for Labor than either the Neilson or Newspoll have gathered. Andrew Bunn, research director at EssentialResearch has explained that, “On average, the most accurate polls in the United States for the last Presidential Election were online”. On the same US election, statistician Nate Silver reported in the New York Times that telephone polls which only called landlines “performed poorly and showed a more Republican-leaning electorate”.

Find out more about the recent Fairfax-Neilson poll on the Canberra Times website. 

Read more about phone polling on the Sydney Morning Herald website. 

Living in the dark ages

I am one of the lucky ones. Unlike most Australians, I have not suffered through the pre-election media hype. I managed to time my annual leave to coincide with the lead up to the election, so I have only been dealing with the dog fight which is ‘Federal Election 2013’ for a few days.

On the downside, I did feel pretty out of the loop when I returned to Australia. So I turned to the polls to find out who Australia will be voting for in four days’ time. We’re not supposed to say it (not yet, anyway), but if the polls are as accurate as we’ve been led to believe then the Coalition will win the election on Saturday. I say the Coalition, not Tony Abbott, because even though Rudd and Abbott have turned this election into a popularity contest we do actually vote for a party, not a leader, in Australia.

But it turns out that the two biggest pollsters in Australia, Neilson and Newspoll, are only calling landlines. Why? Because door-to-door polling costs more money. And putting together accurate mobile-phone calling lists costs money. Which makes me feel pretty cheated.

I rely on the Bureau of Meteorology (BOM) to give me an accurate weather forecast. If the BOM started to give Australians bad weather information because it was cutting costs, I would expect most people to be upset by that. In the same way I, like many Australians, am relying on the polls to give an accurate forecast of this year’s Federal Election. And I am upset that this year the polls might be giving me bad information because Neilson and Newspoll refuse to understand that the landline is no longer the only form of communication.

Those being left out are the under 35s. Why should this matter to YOURLifeChoices members, other than as a matter of principle? Because it affects both parties. Statistics show that the under 35-year-olds tend to be left leaning, which in Australia means giving their votes to Labor instead of the Coalition (I’m working on the safe assumption that the Greens are not set for a landslide victory this year). By leaving these voters out of the polling, poll results show an inaccurate right-wing bias, as seen in the recent US election poll results. This hurts both parties. Labor supporters become dispirited, or swing voters feel they should follow the masses according to the polls. The Coalition supporters think that they’re safe, and don’t campaign as hard as they might otherwise.

Why then are newspapers still relying on expensive, inaccurate poll results, and dragging us down with them? I think it’s time that Australia embraced the digital age and online polling. Real Australians are tech-savvy, and it’s time that Australian politics caught up.

Do you trust the polls? And do they affect how you vote? Or have you already made up your mind?





    COMMENTS

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    Kali-G
    3rd Sep 2013
    10:33am
    Sadly the population is being manipulated by the media groups and are "fed" what they want us to read.
    The circus involving Krudd is sickening.
    He is a hollow man, mouths what ever takes his fancy to try to be the Messiah, but he is just an overtly clever user of the language.
    He was trained as a diplomat(?) and we all know that they can talk all day, yet say nothing!
    He stands for Socialism as is all the Labor Party does.
    Socialism has failed everywhere yet they want us to live under their version.
    The Trade Unions pull the strings and wrecking the economy....yet even the LNP is frightened to speak out against them?
    What chance have we got?
    This great country is being dragged down to the Keating "Banana Republic.
    It is time citizens wake up and vote out every Labor candidates!
    heyyybob
    3rd Sep 2013
    10:54am
    ** heavy sigh :(
    surfer
    3rd Sep 2013
    10:59am
    I agree completely with all you say.
    Anonymous
    3rd Sep 2013
    11:08am
    We will in a democracy. So vote for who ever oyer you wish. But this one eyed view of blindly supporting one party over the other is dumb. (Labor or Lib)
    Vote Palmer !!!!
    lasaboy
    3rd Sep 2013
    12:56pm
    Palmer, but that is about as one eyed as you can get!!!!!
    Jennome
    3rd Sep 2013
    3:16pm
    Good grief Kali-G, what century are you living in? Socialism? The Labor Party are no more socialist these days than the Libs. However, these dreadful socialists gave you Medibank/Medicare (the first repealed by the Libs, then revived under Labor), Superannuation, free University education to those of our vintage, more currently the new schools program and disability care - in fact dozens of reforms over the years. And in spite of the scaremongering by the Murdoch press and the likes of Alan Jones, our financial position is in pretty good condition. They have NOT wrecked the economy. When the Libs come to power, they pull it all back. They're wreckers, the Labor party are reformers - always have been.

    Before you next spout off the top of your head - do a little research. And stop believing the crap Murdoch and his cronies are feeding you.
    student
    3rd Sep 2013
    3:51pm
    one thing Australia does not need is a Party that brings austerity with it. Austerity will bring recession .. just look at Europe and Greece .. AND look at our triple A rating!! Do we need austerity with that??
    Nightshade
    3rd Sep 2013
    3:54pm
    "The Labor Party stands for socialism"

    Where do you see that ?
    They are good at slight of hand is what they are.
    The Banks rule Australia.
    They are planning a bail-in as we speak.
    Thanks to Hawky & Keating -
    How long before it is a nice chunk of everyone's pay cheque ?
    Everything is privatized - which means that the banks in kahoots with who knows whom own everything.
    Dare to open a business in Australia
    IF YOU CAN -
    IF THEY LET YOU -
    Then float it on the stock market, allow yourself to be persuaded to "over stretch your margins to improbable lengths" & bob is definitely your uncle
    BECAUSE YOU WILL BE CORPORATE RAIDED = end up without your company & in massive debt = insolvency & bankruptcy - even prison is on the cards.
    Welcome to socialism -
    surfer
    3rd Sep 2013
    4:44pm
    Voting for Palmer is the waste of a vote. I vote for Tony as a protest against useless Krudd.
    Luchar
    3rd Sep 2013
    6:08pm
    Hi, "student"!
    Question: What do the following have in common - Greece, France, Spain, Ireland?
    Answer: They are all European countries which used to have a Triple-A rating, but which lost that rating due to increasing debt levels.

    Question: Which country situated south of PNG has been warned that unless it addresses its increasing debt levels it could lose its Triple-A rating by the end of 2014? I'm sure you can work that answer out for yourself.

    As for those recommending a vote for Clive Palmer, have you forgotten that this man could not run a football team successfully, but you want to allow him to run your country.
    nitzka
    3rd Sep 2013
    11:52pm
    kali-g...

    Something wrong, with the education,health, NBN policies and triple AAA rating is there???? Never mind you do not really care......Lets hope the thinking caring voter s do.....
    tia-maria
    4th Sep 2013
    2:12am
    KailaG, Think again?? The Daily Telegraph is giving your Tony Abbott write up as its a one side Liberal paper and yes I am damm fed up with one sided Liberals party,Tony is also a very sneakie man with also with hidden ajenders???...........I keep telling every one dont trust any politicians???? What are they going to do for the Retired Pensioners of Australia??( I dont just mean self refunded)
    Nightshade
    4th Sep 2013
    8:11am
    Karli-G ...

    you :- "The Trade Unions pull the strings & wreck the economy" ...
    me :- FOR THE OLIGARCHY .
    The Trade Unions are & have always been the EARTH WIRE, The protector, the fix it gang, the thugs of the OLIGARCHY .

    Boss man want's it all his way & the workers are so, so ,so many = DANGEROUS.
    So he needs PROTECTION - abra cadabra !
    The working mans best friend & helper in life -
    NO, NOT A DOG SILLY !
    The Trade Union.

    Myers / Grocon / The CFMEU / the workers .
    What was that all about I wonder .../?

    They want to bring in foreign workers whom are tax deductible:
    So the 3 stooges = Myer / Grocon / CFMEU cause trouble to besmirch the Australian worker so as to give them a bad reputation...
    YOU CANNOT HIRE AUSTRALIAN WORKERS THEY ARE NO GOOD:-
    MAGIC & it has been working like magic since the beginning.

    Mind they all have to play a double role because it is illegal man !
    Wstaton
    4th Sep 2013
    8:18am
    And don't forget that political thug Murdoch.

    Another point. The blackout that starts on thursday will probably not apply to him so we can expect the pro bono advertising in his media will continue until the end. Libs must be laughing.
    Nightshade
    4th Sep 2013
    8:48am
    Murdoch was in the same boat as Christopher Skase
    He called for help
    They bailed him out & he was saved
    Murdoch sold his soul to the devil - they own him & his connections in Australia.
    THE FACARD
    Nightshade
    4th Sep 2013
    8:57am
    A few months ago I took my car to the auto repairer
    They got one of their guys to give me a lift home
    He told me that FORD AUTO MAKER of Sydney Rd / Hume Highway
    Had sacked 6 long term, highly skilled workers & replaced them with foreign workers.
    Not he, Nor the Ford workers, could understand how & why this happened.
    SO I TOLD HIM TO GO BACK & TELL THEM THAT THE FOREIGN WORKERS WERE TAX DEDUCTIBLE..
    "Do a bit of detective work & you will see that it is true." I said.
    Ford is leaving Australia - the sooner the better I say.
    BUT :- where was the union man .../?
    AND:- where was the media man.../?
    They should have been all over them like a rash hey !
    Nightshade
    4th Sep 2013
    9:43am
    AN APPROPRIATE THEME SONG FOR THE STATE OF MANKIND & THIS POINT IN TIME := QUEEN - I WANT TO BREAK FREE - ON YOUTUBE IF YOU WANT TO SEE.
    I love this video clip
    Paddles
    4th Sep 2013
    10:03pm
    Nightshade

    Along with Boof, you have chosen your avatar well as Deadly Nightshade (aka Belladonna) is a highly toxic substance, and that sits comfortably with your disjointed ravings. It is well established that it may cause severe mental disturbance and, if taken in larger doses, may actually be fatal.
    Golfer
    3rd Sep 2013
    10:54am
    For the 1st time in my life (and I'm in my 60s) I got the opportunity to participate in a phone poll. TWICE in fact - 2 days apart.

    Landline polling is not expensive, and I'm sorry to inform you Rachel and Kevin, that unbelievably it's not inaccurate either.
    A poll is a random sampling of people. The sampling is relativelt small but considered to be large enough to be representative of a view.
    I'm not a fan......particularly those lesser polls which interview 10 kids, 6 of whom are overweight and then announce that "60% of Australia's kids are obese"

    If under 35s have missed out on polls as you suggest then it will be interesting to see what result occurs when we all hit the ballot boxes on Saturday.
    lasaboy
    3rd Sep 2013
    12:58pm
    I also had a couple of phone polls one was straight up, the other had leading questions so could be manipulated to say what was wanted, trust your heart and vote how you feel, you can't trust a word they say
    Pass the Ductape
    3rd Sep 2013
    10:57am
    I for one don't follow politics all that much because I feel that in reality, after the 70 years that I've tried to make a difference, it really hasn't mattered what I say, do or feel, or how I voted even - things happened differently despite any contribution I might have ever made to change the country for the better - except to make sure I always had a job and paid more than my fair share of taxes. One vote - one value..... Phffttt! Somehow this idea got lost in the stats!

    Politicians always plan to do their own thing regardless - and the best the little person can do is to hang around to pick up some of the scraps they leave behind as they go on their merry, taxpayer funded way. Besides, I'm too darn old and cranky to care about what they get up to these days - I've heard all the lies and B/S statements they come with for far too long..... My only hope is that they all leave the oldies alone to enjoy what time they have left upon this earth, but again, I've been around too long to think that will ever happen.
    So roll on election. Thank God I don't have that many left to concern myself with.
    surfer
    3rd Sep 2013
    11:04am
    Well said Ductape, I am in the same boat. All we can do is help our off spring. This country with a paltry population of 23 odd million only need one federal government and a good clean out of a lot of them to. Much fewer chiefs, and lots more indians. Also take the mobile phones off the indians. They are supposed to do the hands on stuff. Only chiefs need mobiles.
    tia-maria
    4th Sep 2013
    2:17am
    Ductape, you hit the nail on the head...we are too old and the government dont give a damm about the retired pensioners.........but would had been nice if they had given to us for a change to make our live easier,........ instead of it all going to families.
    heyyybob
    3rd Sep 2013
    11:07am
    I'm with you, mostly, Ductape on this :) I have and will be spending my remaining years not living it in 3D (Doom, Despair & Despondency) but in real life, counting and enjoying my blessings that I have earned and accrued over 74 years. With luck my last words WON'T be ......."if only" Enjoy the rest of your day, mate ;)
    Troubadour
    3rd Sep 2013
    11:08am
    This is not a popularity contest - it is for the good of this great Nation. We vote for the
    Party NOT the 'person up front'.
    Pass the Ductape
    3rd Sep 2013
    11:25am
    We all hope that's the way it works yorkie - but sometimes I think all we do is vote for a bunch of bureaucratic nincompoops instead!
    Acushla
    3rd Sep 2013
    11:15am
    I have been involved in Survey polls which are more accurate then telephone polls. Check them and see the results.
    Colours
    3rd Sep 2013
    12:14pm
    Good point - I know a lot of young people who don't bother with landlines (or have one for ADSL but don't plug a phone into it). I hope they may in their voting prove to be a little more independent than many 'oldies' who seem determined that Tweedledee or Tweedledum(b) are the only choices.
    Jurassicgeek
    3rd Sep 2013
    12:24pm
    Bit of a change of tack here, Colours do you pay line rental for the adsl iine that you "don't plug a phone into it"???

    If you are paying line rental may I suggest you get "Naked DSL" You still get a landline in but no rental. If your current provider doesnt offer this service, shop around ..there are some really great deals....and save the cost of the rental...
    lasaboy
    3rd Sep 2013
    1:03pm
    I have an ADSL2 line and I connect a wireless router to it so I have my PC connected via a landline and all the other devices connected via WiFi, costs me nothing extra but connects everything I want, including the three laptops in the house, but anyone having the connection and not using it is just ten bob short of the quid
    Wstaton
    3rd Sep 2013
    12:35pm
    Getting back to the subject of this thread (not a forum to shout ones particular siding and post derogatory comments) I personally agree with the fact that polls of any type tends to motivate someone who may have voted for one vote for the other because they have a problem with one party having absolute power in both houses. This I think will apply to the undecided where they may perceive that one party is going to get too much of a landslide which moves them the other way.

    This probably happened in other elections where one party (e.g. Hewson led) was shown as getting in easily ended up with labor getting in.

    I agree that mobile only users are not in the mix but also the stay at home youngsters as well who may live in a home with a landline but only personally use a mobile phone.
    lasaboy
    3rd Sep 2013
    12:50pm
    On a personal note I don't care who votes for whom, but be sure to check your pollies preferences as you could be unwittingly voting for the guy you do not to win i.e. If your choice makes one of the other parties their first preference that is who you are voting for if your choice does not get in and so on down the line.
    Jack
    4th Sep 2013
    12:27am
    Easily fixed Lasaboy, provided you have the interest, time and patience.
    Obviously on the Reps ballot paper you number your preferences and no party preference deal comes into play - unless you blindly follow a party how to vote card.

    For the Senate however, it really becomes critical that politically aware and interested voters put their votes "below the line". In this way you state your preferences as you think they should go. Above the line voting is just for the lazy or disinterested and is effectively a 'donkey vote' for whichever party is given your number '1' above the line. The big parties love above the line voters; these people allow the parties to push aside independents and (possibly valuable) smaller parties.

    I have never voted "above the line". I consider 'above the line' a waste of my voting privilege.

    I know that to fill out 60 or 80 numbers can take a long time, but this can be reduced. Print out your vote strategy / how to vote "card/paper" and take it in to your polling booth. This way you can just fill in the numbers group by group. You do not have to keep track of number sequence.

    I have already prepared my HoR vote and more particularly my vote for the 62 candidate long Senate paper. Early preparation has allowed me to check policies and claims of each party, then to number candidates to the position (which in my opinion) they rate . My "how to vote" paper is complete, and printed on an A4 sheet.

    There are a number of sites which can be used. I looked at three before settling on one which best met my needs: viz,
    belowtheline.org.au

    This site also explains succinctly the handling of preferences and also provides access to web pages outlining major policies of each Senate grouping. Well worth looking at if you are politically aware and not an automatic above the line voter welded to one of the major parties.
    Paddles
    4th Sep 2013
    10:12pm
    Jack

    You are clearly not a resident of NSW as we have 110 "below the line" names to contend with. A large proportion of them are ratbags or blokes that were goaded into it after a few too many drinks. Hold firm to your primary principles and vote above the line.
    Anonymous
    5th Sep 2013
    9:41am
    I agree entirely with Jack. Paddles, I live in NSW and have done my research and preparation so it won't be such a big deal voting below the line in 110 squares. May take me 5 minutes if that. People who want to maximise their vote and full democratic rights should vote below the line. You also learn a lot by researching what all of the parties and independents stand for.
    lasaboy
    3rd Sep 2013
    12:54pm
    As to the media feed, we have had this junk fed to us for years, anyone who believes it deserves all they get if they fall into line, it's like in the early days the people were fed garbage about the Koori people and they believed it, it's no different now, different story same result, that's because most people are sheep and require a shepherd, the problem we have is all the shepherds are crooks or pollies, wait one aren't they one in the same?
    student
    3rd Sep 2013
    3:33pm
    hey lasa, you mean there is a difference between a crook and a pollie?? I really am getting sick of these odd and outrageous Partys (like the I-want-breakfast-in-bed Party ). Put a quota on the Parties allowed to register and time of existence (maybe they have to be involved in 3 elections)
    raymondp
    3rd Sep 2013
    12:57pm
    I am a young 71 years old and have never been involved in a Political survey of any kind during that time. How do we know the areas that are being selected by these pollsters - are they Labor, Liberal, Greens or Katter skewed, which of course effects the outcome. I do not trust them at all. Lets just wait till Saturday and then we shall see
    student
    3rd Sep 2013
    3:20pm
    ray, I was surveyed a few years ago and when they found out I was studying politics (part of a double major)at uni I was told I was not in the demography they wanted !! So do I believe the polls?? NO . Unfortunately a lot of people either use the donkey vote or follow the polls. Sad but true.
    lasaboy
    3rd Sep 2013
    1:05pm
    Come Saturday it will be all over bar the shouting
    Wstaton
    3rd Sep 2013
    2:02pm
    Then we will know who's going to screw us up
    lasaboy
    3rd Sep 2013
    2:51pm
    It does not matter which party they will all screw us, but it pays to lesson the impact if we can
    Heff
    3rd Sep 2013
    2:02pm
    " A warning to all politicians and political parties"

    On Saturday I will exercise my precious democratic right and cast my vote.
    I will, through my vote, pass judgement on the effectiveness of the current government.
    It will be one of many millions of votes which will overwhelmingly throw out an incompetent government which has let our country down in so many ways.
    It is a vote which very , very clearly tells a government it has forgotten it was elected by Australians to represent ALL Australians for our long term best interests.
    So here's a clear reminder - and a warning as well for the elected representative who will receive my vote this Saturday and every future election I am privileged to be able to participate in - Don't ever take my, nor any Australian vote for granted.
    Certainly don't ever take us for fools with your self obsession with getting re elected, your self interested short sighted actions, and the waste of the taxes each and everyone of us has worked so hard for to pay.
    The great majority of Australian voters are no fools no matter what your "minders and policy advisors" might try and tell you. This Saturday will demonstrate this in the most brutal realistic fashion - just in case you've forgotten.
    So to every politician.... in the joy of victory and in the pain of defeat this Saturday evening, always remember that we, the Australian voter, will always know when you put your own self interest ahead of our Nations long term best interest.
    Please don't think your ridiculous "spin," outrageous statements, and in some cases outright lies, as well as your annoying political advertisements are influencing us or miraculously going to forget your ineptitude - we know when we've be let down and We have very good BS detectors so don't insult our intelligence.
    We are smarter than that!
    Always remember, we the Aussie voters hold the ultimate power - not you.
    So when elected, get on and do the job we expect of you - or three years later you too will suffer the same fate on Election Day!
    nitzka
    3rd Sep 2013
    11:36pm
    heff....great passionate viewpoint that is respected...

    Do all of us a favour, and contact your leader,and preferred future P/M and for christs sake get him to reveal all of his policies/costings, well, prior,to the election day...
    .why hide all this and why not face the public in various TV shows..
    ..Why have a fear of stuffing up, what you may be exposed to...
    Was not the trustworthy factor part of the campaign????

    Tonys , lack of credibility and robotic, stage managed style, is what will make this election, closer than all the polls predict!!!
    Pines
    3rd Sep 2013
    3:25pm
    Heff, you make it perfectly clear which Party you are voting for on Saturday. It's good you are exercising your vote and not voting informal or "donkey" as so many do thinking they are being smart.. I have to say I don't agree with you in your choice and I am, and always have been a swinging voter, having voted more on the Liberal side in the past. I am 76 years old so you will realise I have voted many times. I do not think the present Federal Government has been inept as much as I think they have suffered an Opposition Government which has just said "No" to everything be it good or bad. People have bad memories and I realise that Liberal governments have never been good to the low income and pensioner members of the population and I find some of the latest promises Mr Abbott has been making do not make him sound any different. The world had been through a great many disasters, financial and otherwise during the last 5 or 6 years and I think the Labor Gov has brought us through pretty well... So far the latest State Liberal govs have been doing a fair bit of selling off assets and sacking people so I worry if we elect a Federal Liberal Gov. we will get more of the same. As a pensioner now I do not have the worry of being sacked but I also don't look forward to having no increases except the CPI as we saw under the last John Howard Gov. (Who I voted for twice incidently) So I for one will be excercising my vote for the current government on Saturday 7th September.
    Wstaton
    3rd Sep 2013
    4:25pm
    Well said Pines. In the main I agree with you. The last Liberal Government got put out before the advent of the GFC so didn't have to contend with it. Sure the current government has done some silly things but the country has survived through it because of other things they did. It has even been published that overall peoples overall disposable incomes grew more under labor than under liberals. I hate to think what would have happened over this time if the liberals had been in power. I suspect that they would have drove us down into a recession just like the other countries in their manic need to give surpluses.

    I heard on the TV a Liberal say we have to manage responsibly just like the households do. What a load of tommy rot. Most households do manage responsibly but I wonder just how many of them are running completely without debt when you consider all the credit card debt, mortgage and other debts that they have. Yes most of us do manage that responsibly and make sure that we do not overstretch ourselves. But we still have debt.

    Yet we seem to forget that the debt the government created was used to create jobs by stimulating the economy. Yes in some areas it may have not been managed as it should but I would have thought that they will have learnt from that.

    But we shall see what we shall see if the Liberals gain power. Unfortunately it will be to late by then.
    nitzka
    3rd Sep 2013
    11:41pm
    pines.....

    Beautifully put together my friend.....It is a shame the pollsters do not take into account wisdom such as yours......
    Paddles
    4th Sep 2013
    10:26pm
    Pines

    There is some merit in what you say although I wouldn't give the same marks to Labor as you obviously do but the overwhelming factor in the current scenario is stability and this is where Labor loses badly.

    How can they expect the electors to vote for a house divided? It has been glaringly obvious for virtually the past six years that they can't organise their own little dung hill, so why would we assume that they can organise the country?

    It is seldom articulated but I have always believed that the general populace craves strength in their leadership and, providing that the majority of decisions turn out right, then the ones that go pear-shaped can be forgiven. If in doubt, have a closer look at the Menzies era.
    fearlessfly
    3rd Sep 2013
    3:40pm
    WHO on earth actually takes any notice of these bulldust polls ? They are an anachronism in the 21st century (much like the FTA TV channels), and have about as much credibility as the crap "electoral news" that gets pumped out of the FTA TV channels. Both the major 2 political parties cannot be believed anyway, they are going to do nothing for me, I have abandoned both of them, having this week discovered that 80% of the GREENS published policies match my thinking and needs. GO FOR THE GREENS !!
    Pass the Ductape
    3rd Sep 2013
    4:26pm
    No thanks!
    surfer
    3rd Sep 2013
    4:50pm
    Yike's, O NO
    student
    3rd Sep 2013
    3:41pm
    You're right Pines. The donkey and the informal vote is very irresponsible. People die to get a say in their Government and people who have that right and responsibility don't take it seriously. I for one will certainly remember that Australia has a triple A rating in the world.

    AND I will not be influenced by the Polls.
    surfer
    3rd Sep 2013
    4:53pm
    What happened to Queensland's triple A rating. OOooo I know, the labor party bankrupted us. 80 billion. That will take a long time to recover from .
    Kali-G
    3rd Sep 2013
    7:05pm
    Excellent comment Surfer, people have forgotten already the disaster that was Bligh and of course that horrible Peter Beatie.
    Jack
    3rd Sep 2013
    11:03pm
    Agree with you 'student'. Mr Abbot says 'no' even to good ideas; what will he do should we be silly enough to vote him in? Had he been more forward thinking and had a management leaning, he would have supported the better government policies while still holding back on policies Liberals could not support. Australia would have been better off and perhaps the Liberals could have been elected.

    WA also has a AAA rating, but our current leader (Liberal) is hell bent on getting this lowered. He promised infrastructure improvements (road and rail), but reneged on these after being elected earlier this year, using the excuse that he thought the Federal Government would fund them - even though he proclaimed pre election that his government had budgeted the moneys. Even the monk has confirmed that his government (if elected) would not provide funds.

    One of these is construction of a Perth-Darwin highway, a project promised by Charles Court (Liberal premier) in 1970s was to be finished by mid 1980s. Liberals have a tendency to put forward the same promises, knowing they are projects the people want and will support; and this one they have done at every election since the 1970s; and then ignore them if they win.

    In Perth, we only have rail infrastructure because of Labor governments. Past Liberal governments closed down Perth - Fremantle line and fought against lines to Mandurah (south) and Clarkson (north). The highways are chockers in peak periods and getting worse. The rail lines are under providing due to Liberal government cancellation of forward orders for rolling stock. In another thread 'young simmo' boasted of free rail travel (actually 9:00 to 15:30 M-F and all day S,S). Guess which party introduced this? He also mentioned a $500 fuel voucher for pensioners outside the metro area. This was a result of the clout Nationals held in previous government and nearly went down the drain when Liberals got self governing majority this time. At one stage it looked like our emperor was going to sink this.

    Liberals have closed down country rail lines which used to carry grain to the ports. Instead we have an increase in heavy vehicles abusing roads not designed for such use as well as increasing the risk of horrific accidents with tired drivers pushing unreasonable time limits. Again, one suggests - follow the money! Who benefits? Definitely not the man on the street or the innocent little car driver on the road.

    We have wasted a wonderful Perth river front by planning construction of more unwanted / un-needed buildings on swamp land. To cater for this, roads have been closed further bottlenecking city streets; and worse, the two emergency lanes in the Farmer tunnel have been turned to normal use to cover the poor planning. If we have a major crash, and more particularly, fire, in this tunnel, we will be front page news all round the world. (tunnel named after Polly Farmer, VFL footballer - and following the aussie larrikin trend, known as the "polly pipe")

    This is alongside the apparent $30m give away of land to Crown Casino and the construction of a sports stadium on swamp land and site of an old rubbish tip giving rise to horrific foundation costs; perhaps so it could be built near to and possibly(?) feed customers to the casino. This stadium will never be full in my life time. At the moment there is loud demand for a bigger stadium (to be used at best a couple of times a week), Using the basic supply / demand consideration, demand will slump once seats are available to all. The value of seats will decline, but the price will go up to cover costs, further reducing demand. People just cannot afford to spend the money. The people who would want to go to AFL games are more metro centred and do not have the disposable income of fly-in fly-out mine workers. WA is very much a 2 tier economy - perhaps 3 tier if you separate out pensioners and others on Centrelink benefits.

    The Howard Liberal government balanced the books by selling off the farm and treating the resulting moneys as income. In so doing it crucified future governments from the (not insignificant) annual income these provided to government coffers. Sales to private enterprise were supposed to reduce costs, but of course this did not and could / would not occur. Privately run businesses have to make returns for shareholders; and the way they do this is like all good Liberals - they slash and burn to reduce costs. Liberal management lacks the imagination to consider that future economies are best built on the back of sensible maintenance spending today.

    A beautiful example in WA is the run down state of electricity suppliers - eg power poles are rotting and need repair; in the interim they are fire hazards. Moneys which should have been used for this going to shareholders and exorbitant management salaries. We will see the same thing with Mr Abbot and the NBN. The Liberals plan to use existing copper technology. Unfortunately this copper system has not been fully maintained and the copper is nearing its use by date. Apparently copper wiring deteriorates and has a useful life of around 30 years - this has been reached. How can one trust an organisation which either has not done its homework or has done so and found that its policies do not stand up. One step is of course, refuse to issue detailed plans and costings!

    What will happen of course is that the Abbot rabble (if elected) will ramble on and blame past governments knowing they will not have to stand up and be counted during a world wide financial catastrophe; that is until Mr Abbot runs us into a recession, losing that precious AAA.

    I have been a swinging voter all my life and consider local representatives and party policy rather than the leaders. This time one must ignore the peacock posturing of Messrs Abbot and Rudd and look at their back up support. Watching Bowen and Hockey on tv, it is obvious that the latter is behind - and I could go on further, but realise that others are capable of doing their own thinking.

    Therefore we will each make up our own minds. These are just my thoughts. As you would gather, for this election I do not have the trust in nor courage to, vote for any Liberal representative - perhaps other than 'last' on the ballot paper.
    nitzka
    4th Sep 2013
    1:14am
    yes jack,
    i too am from wa and have noted how arrogant and cost cutting and broken promises have been so evident after the State election....AND lets not all forget that our very "Trustworthy Abbott" considered Barnett the Premier as an example of whom he looked up to as ,to look after the Coaltions way as to how to run a government.... Did Queensland experience the same...
    ..Do we in Australia,also need to experience, what has been highlighted at State Level......."God help us, if Abbott and his negative team of clowns,whom provided an excellent comedy hour at Parliament Question Time, get to represent all of us ,after this election!!!"
    Wstaton
    4th Sep 2013
    6:37am
    Yes you are right Jack, We have similar problems in Vic with a Liberal government. they are pushing through a freeway tunnel that even their advisors say will not meet the advantages they say it will. It is said it's pork barrelling for the affluent eastern suburbs. They have dropped the construction of a north to south metro rail tunnel which is said will provide more benefits. They have dropped a rail line to Doncaster which would have dropped the amount of traffic significantly on the road leading to this freeway tunnel. The monk is going to give 1.5b towards the road. Etc, etc etc. I give up with this lot yet people are blindly going to vote for this lot with a expectation that they will improve their personal lot above one that is already good compared to world standards.
    Wstaton
    4th Sep 2013
    6:37am
    Yes you are right Jack, We have similar problems in Vic with a Liberal government. they are pushing through a freeway tunnel that even their advisors say will not meet the advantages they say it will. It is said it's pork barrelling for the affluent eastern suburbs. They have dropped the construction of a north to south metro rail tunnel which is said will provide more benefits. They have dropped a rail line to Doncaster which would have dropped the amount of traffic significantly on the road leading to this freeway tunnel. The monk is going to give 1.5b towards the road. Etc, etc etc. I give up with this lot yet people are blindly going to vote for this lot with a expectation that they will improve their personal lot above one that is already good compared to world standards.
    Pines
    3rd Sep 2013
    5:40pm
    In addition to my previous comments, I would just like to say to Nightshade that I think he/she has their wires crossed and the Liberal Party are well known for selling off assets and privatising services etc., not the Labor Party. I think, if my memory serves me correctly that John Howard was instrumental in selling a large share of Telstra, feel free to correct me if I'm wrong and Mr O'Farrell has been going down this path since coming to power in NSW.
    Wstaton
    3rd Sep 2013
    5:50pm
    Yep and they have already said that they are going to sell off Medibank Private probably the post office as well.

    One liberal even stupidly said "well if it is called Medibank Private it might as well be sold off to private enterprise". Wonder if they have factored the loss of revenue into their policies.

    Yes 90% of Telstra was sold off by Howard the other 10% is held by the "Future Fund"
    Jack
    4th Sep 2013
    12:42am
    A check of the following site may provide some of the info you seek. There are others, but this is from the horses mouth so to speak.

    www.finance.gov.au/property/asset-sales/past-sales.html
    RichF
    3rd Sep 2013
    8:38pm
    A an ex Pom - ex Kiwi, I object to compulsory voting. I reckon a non vote is a valid vote. So when I voted a week or so ago (my wife and I will be traveling on the 7th, so it's legit) I made damned sure the B#@*%(!s have to work for it. Living in Queensland I made sure that I numbered all the 82 squares on the Senate paper and voted against BOTH major parties in the house. They a lorry load of no hopers and neither mob deserves to e in power. Come on Australia -- vote for smaller parties, independats or ay one else yo can thin of and keep both mobs out -- or at least diminished.
    JohnBoy
    3rd Sep 2013
    10:01pm
    You do realise that if the Libs get in we will be overruled by an Abbott and a Bishop, don"t you. Is that scary or what?
    Pines
    3rd Sep 2013
    10:28pm
    Excellent point JohnBoy
    lasaboy
    3rd Sep 2013
    10:18pm
    Now we just need a Pope in there LOL
    nitzka
    3rd Sep 2013
    11:16pm
    Yes, when I found out the polls were based on 1000 blocks, landline users....I could not believe,the majority of the population, vote was to be directed to the Coalition,without taking into account the mobile users in the electorate......I am not under 35 ,,,I am 68- and a mobile user......What needs to be highlighted, are the polling groups involved and the media owners behind same........
    We dont need to be "Mandrake" to be aware of the unbelievable one sided view by the Murdoch press............
    We all have our educated views behind this.....(an old SBS documentary about Murdoch and whom he favours and backs in Australian Politics,tells the story as it is....)

    This support as an advertising campaign dollar wise on a "Pro-Bono Basis" is a very valuable commodity by those that get that favour.....

    I personally hope, that the Murdoch press, get the same result as the predictions made in the USA elections......How wrong were they, after all the polling ,that occurred there????

    I believe, the same will happen here,....the polls will prove not to be as accurate as the press,wants us all to believe, and the poll that really counts will be the one on election day on 7/9/2013-------Do not be suprised if the Palmer United Party, gains a lot of protest votes.......And I as an individual and a voter that does care about the future direction of our country,appreciate how important education is to the future of our nation,as well as the health policies and NBN factor.....all under a triple AAA economy,well affordable by the taxation revenues that will be available over the next 10 yrs......Why risk good policies that are in place and beneficial to our nations future????
    fish head
    4th Sep 2013
    8:20am
    I am sorry but I fail to see any value or point to polling other to make money for whoever conducts them.Unless you are uncomfortable suggestive do you really care what a lot of strangers are thinking? You have a brain - use it. Common sense -use it. Make up your own mind and act on YOUR opinion.
    Kali-G
    4th Sep 2013
    10:39am
    I am a refugee from a Socialist Country!
    I have seen how they control the population.
    before you judge, learn to study...
    Labor and the trade unions are SOCIALIST.
    B y the way Krudd is NOT the Messiah just a hot air cupboaed socialist...
    he would not know a worker if he fell over one...
    surfer
    4th Sep 2013
    11:18am
    Good stuff Kali-G. This Rudd inherited 19 billion credit from Howard. In six years he has turned that into over 300 billion in debt with an interest annual bill of 10 billion. Now this was during record income from the mining boom. Just do your sums. WHERE HAS ALL THE MONEY GONE??????? Why O why is he not required to tell Australian tax payers where the hell it has all gone. There are massive short falls here, not accounted for. No use bleating about the GFC as that is long gone and the mining boom would have compensated for that one. So please MR Krudd, where is all the money??? Do your union mates know anything about this!!!!!! Come clean for once in your life.
    surfer
    4th Sep 2013
    11:22am
    How on earth could hard working tax paying Australians put up with any more of this disgusting little man. You would think it was his money he was splashing about.
    JohnBoy
    4th Sep 2013
    10:47pm
    PALMER SEEMS TO MAKE A LOT OF SENSE - NO PROMISES, JUST FACTS. HE'S GOT ME
    lasaboy
    5th Sep 2013
    2:52am
    Plenty of facts, but he is just another millionaire looking to line his pockets, you can have all the facts you like, but if you have not got the knowledge to fix it, all the facts and wanting to do it means sweet FA
    JohnBoy
    5th Sep 2013
    11:30am
    Remember we have facts, (lies) damn facts (damn lies) and statistics. So who do you believe. Pollies promises are a bit like New Year Resolutions - made to be broken. And they always have a reason.
    JohnBoy
    4th Sep 2013
    10:52pm
    They seem to expend our money on ill-advised projects. They don't put it in their own pockets - what would you do with umpteen billion? I'd be happy with just one lousy million. How abot you?
    lasaboy
    5th Sep 2013
    2:54am
    Labor has always been about having a hole in their pocket, spend, spend, spend, she'll be right mate, we can print more, we are the government, the blind leading the blind, with us dumb bunnies footing the bill
    nitzka
    4th Sep 2013
    11:10pm
    I hope all providers of opinions, watched tonites Kitchen Cabinet with Annabel Crabbe...

    Star performer was "A Robot Clone of Abbott"....
    Could this be the first successful Human Clone manufactured by the Japanese????....
    .What was of interest, was ,there is a cake, where the ingredients are to be shared between Abbott and Rudd...

    ...Could this be an omen for the "sweetest victory of all"......eg Hewson/GST/cake???

    5th Sep 2013
    1:36pm
    As a Christian I decided many decades ago that to vote in Govt elections was the wrong thing to do, so I ceased. The Australian Electoral Commission writes me a letter asking why I failed to vote, I send them a reasonable excuse according to the Australian Constitution and have never been fined.
    Many Christians have accused me of being disobedient for they think that believers have to obey every law of man, but I ought to obey God rather than man, thus I pay tax and obey the law as far as it is possible for me to do so. I will not be party to voting for folks who may later consent to making legal things which oppose God's will and bring reproach to this nation; such as same sex marriage.
    surfer
    8th Sep 2013
    11:32am
    No same sex marriage please. Have we all been eating to many chickens with those hormones that turn them all into it's. Men growing breasts and woman with mens hair cuts. Please, let us get back to normal.
    Pass the Ductape
    8th Sep 2013
    3:24pm
    Crikey! You'd best keep that to yourself surfer. Don't you know that straight people are the 'queer ones' in society these days?
    surfer
    8th Sep 2013
    5:12pm
    Thanks ductape, I better say that my statement was said with tongue in cheek. I wondered why I have been feeling so queer lately. No more chooks.


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