POLITICAL PARTIES WILL DIE ON SATURDAY

Election 2022 will result in Australians choosing a minority ALP Government.

Many Independents will be elected and the Greens will enhance their numbers.

ALP will win some seats and lose others, leaving them short of a majority.

The cross bench will guarantee supply and undertake not to move motions of no confidence, while honouring key ALP Election commitments & requesting that legislation be passed that implement their own commitments in vital areas such as climate, housing, health, longevity, culture etc.

It will create a long overdue and stable government that achieves progress and prosperity with justice and compassion.

The Coalition will be decimated and divided and in need of total reform as they have self destructed.

The remnants of the Liberal Party will break up, with the Pentecostals separating from the Moderates. The National Party, having lost seats, will have a bitter leadership turmoil. Their extreme right will join with the Pentecostals.

The Palmer and Hanson parties will be reduced to insignificance.

The ALP will be forced to reform itself after two failed campaigns under Shorten and Albanese but they should be able to achieve it without internal blood letting if they have the will to do so.

The Greens have enjoyed a significant resurgence due to their powerful climate change policy which has hugely appealed to Under 30 voters. They have a real chance to win 3 new seats in Brisbane ( Ryan, Griffith and Brisbane), plus Richmond in NSW and Macnamara in Victoria while holding Adam Bandt’s seat of Melbourne.

Independents will deliver a killer blow to the major parties which is why I am personally working hard as a volunteer on the campaign for my friends – Suzie Holt in Groom (Toowoomba) and Kate Hook in Calare (Orange/Bathurst) who are non-political independents of genuine quality.

Tracking this across the continent, the Liberals will lose these seats to them –

Curtin in Western Australia

Boothby in South Australia

Goldstein and Kooyong in Victoria.

Hume, Wentworth, North Sydney, Mackellar & Warringah in NSW

Groom in Queensland.

The Nationals will suffer defeats in –

Hinkler in Queensland,

Page, Cowper & Calare in NSW

Nicholls in Victoria

The Palmer Party will lose Hughes to an Independent and put an end to Craig Kelly’s less than illustrious parliamentary career.

The ALP will lose Fowler in NSW to an Independent. This is the seat where Kenneally was arrogantly parachuted in as candidate against hostile opposition from local ALP.

Existing crossbenchers Haines, Bandt, Wilkie, Sharkie, Steggall and Katter will hold their seats.

ALP will win 6 seats from Liberals but lose 3 as outlined above.

The Greens may get to hold the balance in the Senate while former Queensland Premier Campbell Newman, Rugby legend David Pocock and author Jane Caro are on track to win Senate seats as well. Additionally, my hope is that Senator Rex Patrick will hold his seat in South Australia as he has proved to be a very responsible parliamentarian.

I cannot see Pauline Hanson holding her Senate seat as her star is fading and it I am certain that Clive Palmer will disappear, hopefully forever.

This means that, to have a future, the major parties must reform or die. As they have always rejected reform, it may be the latter.

But, we will have a Parliament where some deadwood has been cleaned out and MP’s of stature will have replaced them.

In this situation, the Governor General will have huge power.

The Constitution does not recognise political parties, nor does it recognise Prime Ministers. I simply says,

‘The Governor General will appoint Ministers’.

Usually, he invites the Leader of the winning party to advise him as to who should become Ministers, but where there is no winner, the power lies entirely with him.

He will seek advice from the Independents and Greens as to whom they wish to be appointed as Prime Minister. They could nominate someone who is not the leader of a Party and the GG will have total power to invite that person to form a government and obtain a vote of confidence in the House of Representatives without asking Parties for approval.

The Independents in their first action of political power, will probably nominate either Jim Chalmers or Tanya Plibersek.

So, why have we reached this point where politics is at its lowest ebb of my lifetime. Indeed, a huge percentage of voters rank it as the lowest of the low?

The cause is that political parties on both right and left are tightly controlled by small groups of power brokers who produce privileges for elite people, while arrogantly insisting that it is all really ultra democratic.

In addition, the less than decent behavior, lack of skills of government and inability to speak the truth as shown by most parliamentarians, simply switches off voters, filling them with disgust.

Its time for all of us to aspire to have a Parliament we can respect and admire for they way it creates a fair and cohesive society.

My hope is that the political carnage that occurs as votes are counted on Saturday evening will begin an era of progressive and enlightened social and economic advancement for all Australians.

This can only be achieved if Australia has a Prime Minister who is neither Scomo nor Albo.

Yours in independence

Everald Compton AO

PS. Be inspired by the vision of the political leaders who founded the new nation of Australia in 1901.

Read my book DINNER WITH THE FOUNDING FATHERS.

Order it on my website https://www.everaldcompton.com

Tony Windsor and Everald Compton have formed a team to get Rural Independents elected and invite you to join them.

We have worked together for many years on economic and social projects that will enhance the lives of Australians, particularly those who live in Inland Australia.

Shortly after Everald announced in 1996 his intention to build an Inland Railway from Melbourne to Darwin, we worked as a team in long term negotiations with five governments to ensure that it happened.
It took many years to get results, but we rejoiced in 2017 when the Federal Government announced that it would build the first section of it from Melbourne to Brisbane.

We cooperated in every way that we could, but it became clear that the Government had decided to proceed without involving Everald despite his two decades of work in bringing the project to reality.
Then, we were appalled at the callous manner in which ARTC treated landholders and local communities in wilfully destroying their livelihood.

It is also clear that the Government has irresponsibly wasted huge sums of public funds by allowing the project to blow out from an initial budget of $9 Billion to a current estimate of $20 Billion and a probability of it expanding to more than $25 Billion.

Therefore, we are left with no option but to use Election 2022 as the only means available to convert this tragedy into a significant national asset by supporting the election of independent candidates of top quality who are potential winners of rural seats along the path of Inland Rail from Melbourne to Brisbane.

We are backing excellent people have nominated in 5 Inland Rail electorates, plus a fine rural candidate for the Senate in Victoria who has supported Everald all the way since 1996.

They are-
Suzie Holt (Groom), Kate Hook (Calare), Pennie Scott (Riverina), Helen Haines
(Indi), Rob Priestly (Nicolls), Susan Benedyka (Senate Victoria).

Our support of these independent candidates is not contingent on their support of our criticism of Inland Rail. We intend to help them with issues they believe are important to their electorates.

We welcome your involvement with us in ensuring that those fine Independents become productive and progressive members of Parliament.

Attached below is a document written by Everald that outlines the tragedy that has occurred with Inland Rail.

Feel free to contact us directly or through our campaign coordinator, Graham Nuttall, who has also been an active partner of ours for many years in advocating the building of an Inland Railway and has written a great document (attached) on how Hung Parliaments can work well.

TONY WINDSOR (0427 668 868) EVERALD COMPTON (0407 721 710)

Graham Nuttall contact details are Mobile 0412 916 040 – Email nutts@optusnet.com.au 

————————————-

THE DESTRUCTION OF THE INLAND RAILWAY

EVERALD COMPTON PROVIDES A SUMMARY OF THE TRAGEDY

*In 1996, I met at Parliament in Canberra with John Howard to outline my plans to build an Inland Railway from Melbourne to Darwin, primarily using private capital. He asked his ministers to cooperate with me in preliminary planning.

*To test public support, I organised, attended, spoke at 53 public meetings along the pathway of the railway which was planned to go from Melbourne to Albury, Parkes, Moree, Goondiwindi, Toowoomba, Gladstone, Emerald, Longreach, Hughenden, Mount Isa, Tennant Creek and Darwin.

*Those meetings had huge attendances, packed to the rafters, filled with enthusiasm about the vision of the social & economic regeneration of the Inland. Never otherwise in my 90 years have I ever experienced such goodwill. This splendid dream has now been destroyed by the Australian Railtrack Corporation.

*The vision that I outlined was that of a railway that would transport rural products to the nearest Port with speed, efficiency and at low cost, causing regional communities to grow into inland cities.

*After 20 long years of negotiations, overcoming fear of politicians that the railway would be a dud and they would get the blame, the Australian Government announced in the 2017 Budget that it would commission its own rail company, The Australian Rail Track Corporation, to build the first section of the Inland Railway from Melbourne to Brisbane via Goondiwindi and Toowoomba.

*They contributed no budget funding for it, but authorised ARTC to obtain a government guaranteed, low interest, bank loan for 9 billion dollars to do the job. This has been subsequently expanded to 14 billion, then 19 billion and is anticipated to reach 25 billion. ARTC has no capacity ever to repay it.

*At the time of this announcement, I was dispensed with, receiving no letter of thanks for 2 decades of hard work and no hint whatsoever of any financial recompense for time or expenses incurred. I did not ask for or expect any, but it was callous treatment nevertheless.

*The project has been a dud from day one as it does not start from the Port of Melbourne nor finish at the Port of Brisbane so it is totally useless to rural communities. All that it is planned to do is carry freight at the highest possible speed between two capital cities and put the trucking industry out of business. It is a huge betrayal by the National Party which was founded to create prosperity for Rural Australia.

*In addition, the staff of Inland Rail have acted like thugs and destroyed the livelihood of farmers and rural communities by unnecessarily resuming land to build the track when there were alternate routes along road corridors & current and disused rail tracks and power corridors that would have harmed no one. They are even destroying housing.

*Added to this is huge administrative waste of funds that is scandalous. Billions of dollars are involved.

*It is now quite clear that Inland Rail will not ever get beyond Toowoomba. There will be blood on the streets if ARTC tries to build a railway through the outer suburbs of Brisbane.

*Members of Parliament representing electorates on the path of Inland Rail from outer Melbourne to outer Brisbane must be challenged for their seats for allowing this tragedy to unfurl totally unnecessarily. The only exception is Helen Haines, Independent Member for Indi, who is fighting a memorable battle to stop ARTC from destroying communities in her electorate. The others have turned a blind eye.

*And the Board of Directors of ARTC must be dismissed by the incoming government for gross negligence in allowing this fiasco to occur.

EVERALD COMPTON – 0407 721710 – everald.compton@live.com.au

PS. I AM NOW LEADING A CONSORTIUM (minus ARTC) THAT WILL BUILD A DUAL GAUGE RAILWAY DIRECT FROM GLADSTONE TO GOONDIWINDI  (not via Toowoomba). IT WILL MAKE GLADSTONE THE ‘ROTTERDAM OF AUSTRALIA’. 

————————————————

Independents – Creators of Better Government

The prospect of a “Hung” Parliament frightens the major parties bringing about scare campaigns and the old chestnut that Independents can’t do anything.
We are seeing this played out particularly in seats where the “Voices for” groups have mobilised and grown their supporter numbers early enough in the lead up to the next election in May to be a real threat.

The community consultation and development of grassroots support for these groups and subsequently the candidates they support is showing the major parties that the “silent majority” who they have taken for granted are waking up to their antics.

These people are seeing a way to break free from the clutches of the major parties who they have stuck with for many years.

They are unchaining their hearts to make a change in the way they are represented in the Parliament and are now supporting their own independent candidates.

It has been the “Norm” after each general election in a Westminster system like Australia that one major party or the other wins the majority of seats in the Parliament after which that Party can form a majority Government until the next general election.

On the rare occasion that neither major party has won a majority in its own right, one or the other party has to either form a “Coalition” with minor parties or negotiate support for it to form a government with the Members of the “Cross Bench”.

This was the case after the 2010 General Election.

The major Parties really don’t like this outcome after a general election as it takes away the “power” of an Executive Government that can dictate what happens in the Parliament.

Their mantra is that we have more seats than the other team and therefore we have a “mandate” to implement ALL of their policies even if they are detrimental to the people.

They believe that ALL their policies were endorsed by the majority of the voters – not perhaps that they were the lesser of two evils or as Russell Crowe said in his movie Master & Commander, “the lesser of two weevils.”

A “Hung Parliament” or minority Government however means that the Executive are no longer in total control of the agenda of the Parliament and in fact they have to take into account the views of others and adjust their thinking in recognition of others to get things through the Parliament.

This has been the case for a long time in the Senate, however not so in the House of Representatives.
The Executive therefore is stymied and resents having to deal with pesky Cross Bench MPs who came into the place to represent the people of their electorate in the Parliament not represent the Party back in the electorate even if their personal view differs from their Party – Toe the line and shut up if you know what’s good for you!!

Executive Government is also an easy ride for the mainstream media as it provides the media with some certainty about where the Government of the day is heading.

Individual journalists can cosy up to the Executive and receive inside stories that boost their own profiles and therefore readership among the masses.

A “Hung Parliament” makes it harder for the media to get a handle on where the Cross Bench MPs will actually vote often until it hits that stage in the Bill’s passage.

In 2010 when Tony Windsor and Rob Oakeshott were trying to decide who to support to form Government, they were looking for the side that they could trust to run the full term of the Parliament i.e., 3 years.

They believed that if the Parliament was to make significant changes and impact on Australia’s future that 3 years would be needed to develop and implement the necessary legislation and programs to at least make a start on changes for the better.

Julia Gillard was certainly better equipped to deal with a Hung Parliament and take it to the full term and she did this, passing a record 561 Bills over the term.

Tony Abbott was only waiting for the NSW State election to be run and won by the Coalition in 2011 before he would have declared that he could no longer work within a hung parliament and taken the country to another election.

A good example of the “Hung Parliament” working includes The Multi Party Climate Change Committee (MPCCC). It provided a vehicle that brought together the Greens, Independents and Labor to focus on developing a way forward to address the major global issue of Climate Change. 

The only thing missing was the Liberal/National Party (LNP) Coalition who were more intent on pushing the “great big new TAX” propaganda and trying to bring the Government down.

Executive Government would not have gone down this path of bringing others into the process but in doing so other points of view were recognised such as leaving transport fuel out of the price on carbon and recognising the value of the agriculture sector in addressing Climate Change issues.

Executive Government would not have supported the Royal Commission into Child Abuse but with the support of the Crossbench Julia Gillard showed the courage needed to bring it on.

The commitment to the original NBN rollout fibre to the premise (FTTP) was also pushed by the Cross Bench MPs (later dismantled by the LNP) as well as support for the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS).

The Parliamentary Committee process operated more fully without Executive Government interference and Private Members were encouraged to submit “Private Members Bills”

Tony Windsor’s amendment to the Environmental Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act to include a “Water Trigger” still exists despite best efforts of the Coalition to give the power back to the States thanks to the “Hung Senate”.

Executive Government power hence diminishes as a result of a “Hung Parliament” with decisions made after consultation, compromise and consensus.

Remember – A good idea doesn’t care who has it and no-one has a mortgage on good ideas.
A Hung Parliament and Independents should not be feared by the community.

Independents have the ability to rein in the hard right which has had too much say in Government policy direction and lasso the left so as to recognise social and environmental issues whilst keeping them within the bounds of achievability.  

Independents may never be in Government but they are never in Opposition either.

Hence Independents are truly “Creators of Better Government”.

CONTINUING THE WORK OF THE FOUNDING FATHERS

HELP SEND THREE PETITIONS TO THE AUSTRALIAN PARLIAMENT

Many of my Facebook friends have read my book DINNER WITH THE FOUNDING FATHERS and have expressed interest in helping to upgrade the work of the Founders of our nation by advocating constitutional changes that modern Australia needs 120 years later.

If you have not yet read my book, I invite you to do so and then consider offering your help also.

I reckon that we can only get three changes through at a Referendum at any one time.

So, here are three for your consideration, outlined in the form with which they can be presented to Parliament.

Continue reading “CONTINUING THE WORK OF THE FOUNDING FATHERS”

Federal Government must do more for growing population of ageing Australians

GREY POWER article in Courier Mail QWeekend, October 1-2,2016 By GRANTLEE KIEZA

It’s high noon in Canberra as Everald Compton gets ready to march toward the microphone and into ­battle at the National Press Club. A few weeks short of his 85th birthday, he’s still hitting his stride. As Compton adjusts his blue and white diamond-­patterned tie, straightens the jacket of his dark blue power suit and runs a hand over his shining white hair, there’s a touch of the statesman about him.

He is a veteran campaigner who has been shaking the hands of prime ministers since 1956 and twisting their arms for the past 40 years, fighting for increases in the pension and spreading his message that grey is gold – that elderly Australians are a priceless asset.

Of all the prime ministers he has met, Bob Menzies and Gough Whitlam were the most commanding, while at the other end of the spectrum he thought Billy McMahon was a “silly little bloke” – the worst prime minister he had ­encountered until he met Kevin Rudd and Tony Abbott.

He hopes to channel some of Menzies and Gough today. Watching on, the moderator at the Press Club address, David Speers, Sky Channel’s political editor, remarks: “When Everald Compton is on the warpath, both sides of politics need to watch out.”
Compton casts an eye over the lunchtime audience in the large dining room and as he takes centre stage behind the lectern and adjusts the discreet hearing aid in his left ear, he outlines the reasons why Malcolm Turnbull not only has to appoint a special minister for ageing Australians but why the whole age pension system needs overhauling. There are 1.5 million aged pensioners in Australia, he says, and a third of them are living on or below the ­poverty line, mashing their food because they can’t afford dental care or missing meals so they can pay their rent.
“The age pension in Australia is clearly inadequate,” he says, “and the Government of Australia has to face up to it.”

He holds up a report labelled “The Adequacy of the Age Pension in Australia” that he and a team of researchers have been working on for 12 months. He says it should have been titled “The Inadequacy of the Age Pension”.
Back in 1908, Compton says, Alfred Deakin and Andrew Fisher, who both served as prime ministers that year, “got together and set the age for the pension at 65 because that’s the age when they reckoned most people would be dead, and they were going to give the age pension to anyone who survived”. He says the pension rate was then £26 a year ­because that’s all the government could afford.
“There was no other scientific calculation involved. Down the years governments have made adjustments on whether they need to win an election, but they have never done an economic study to see what it really costs a ­pensioner to live.” Compton says many pensioners are ­giving up their phones and their computers because they can’t afford the $40 monthly bill – “so we are entering an age of technology where pensioners are going to be cut off from essential medical services”.
For the past year, Compton’s not-for-profit group the Longevity Innovation Hub, along with Australia’s oldest charity, the Benevolent Society, and the research think tank Per Capita, have been researching the needs of ­pensioners, holding focus groups and public meetings around the country. His research shows the need for “an independent tribunal set up by an act of Parliament that takes the whole pension out of the budget and out of polit­ical and election places”. Parliamentarians, he says, have a similar tribunal to ­decide their own salaries and never question the findings. Making the pension adequate and fair, he says, would cost the Federal Government $2 billion, but it could save $8 billion a year by cutting out middle-class welfare and negative gearing. Even if that meant a ­decline in the value of the home at Aspley, about 13km north of Brisbane’s CBD, where he and his wife Helen, 78, live, Compton says it’s a bullet he’ll take for the team.
We’re sitting in the study of that neat, lowset Aspley home two days after Compton’s speech. He’s behind the desk where, with a tumbler of good Scotch beside him and one finger working tirelessly, he tapped out a ­biography of his hero, the Reverend John Flynn. He wrote The Man on the Twenty Dollar Notes while winding down from a schedule that includes fighting for the pensioners, consulting on an inland railway from Melbourne to Darwin, writing regularly on his blog, tweeting voraciously under the handle @EVERALDATLARGE, advising on the cattle business, and raising funds for the Uniting Church in Aspley, where he and Helen are both elders.

Already on the day Everald talks to The Courier-Mail, he has had breakfast in Brisbane with Cloncurry cattleman Don McDonald, whose properties cover a land mass bigger than Belgium, and who is backing the inland railway. He ­followed that with a public meeting with pensioners at Mt Gravatt, in Brisbane’s south, hosted by the State Member for Mansfield, Ian Walker. Then it was lunch with a ­researcher to discuss affordable housing.
Helen is constantly amazed at her husband’s workload but Compton swears Flynn’s spirit is beside him, urging him to fight for disadvantaged Australians.
“Flynn was always a hero from my earliest childhood memories,” he says. “My mother took me to Sunday school at age three and I’ve been going to church ever since.”
Compton was born in Toowoomba and grew up in the logging villages of Linville and Monsildale in the Brisbane Valley. When the local mill closed, his father, Herbert, moved the family to Toowoomba for work at the KR smallgoods factory.
Herbert was descended from a British convict and Compton’s mother, Thelma, was the granddaughter of a ­Lutheran missionary sent from Germany with the charter to “remove sin from the continent of Australia”. John Flynn became Compton’s idol and exemplar.
“The sheer scope of what he achieved is staggering,” he says. “Back in 1912 the Presbyterian Church said to him, ‘we are going to make you the head of the Australian Inland Mission to look after the bush’ – which was 80 per cent of the continent. They thought he was going to build churches but he went out to spread the word by building a mantle of safety. He built hospitals, started the Flying Doctors and School of the Air. He was a true nation-builder and we don’t have nation-builders like him any more.”
Compton says writing the book kept his brain ­constantly firing. “I believe someone who remains active like me will live five years longer,” he says. “The more ­people who keep working into their later years means less money the government has to find for pensions. And the longer a person works, the more money is going into their super fund so they have a better life.
“I’m on a board of directors of a cattle company that I have a minor interest in. All the others on the board are 40, and I’m almost 85. They keep referring to my experience, and that situation should be replicated all over Australia. Every company with young turks should have an old guy on the board, provided they are willing to learn new ways.”

At the National Press Club, Jo Toohey, chief executive of the Benevolent Society, follows Compton to the stage and tells the audience that for many pensioners, the daily challenges of medical bills, paying rent or hiring tradespeople are “hugely amplified”.
“This has an enormous effect on their health and wellbeing.” Out of their pension, she says – a maximum basic rate of $797.90 a fortnight for a single person and $1203 for couples – they have to pay the basics first, so even a dental visit becomes “an extraordinary event”. Australia’s minimum wage is nearly double the age ­pension. The lowest-paid Member of Parliament receives almost 10 times the amount. “The poverty line in Australia is $851 a fortnight,” Toohey says. “If you’re a single person receiving the age pension without any rent assistance ­because you own your own home – which is quite possibly falling down around you – then your living income is $56 below the poverty line. That’s one-third of age pensioners.”
Many pensioners, she says, switch off their hot water for months because they can’t afford the electricity. “We are a rich country, the fifth-richest in the world (according to OECD wealth-distribution figures) yet we allow a third of our pensioners to live at or below the ­poverty line.”
Compton watches his confederate speak. He has the look of a general commanding troops in attack.
John Flynn knew how to build partnerships with people who could help him, Compton says. He had Hudson Fysh, the founder of Qantas, and fundraisers such as cattleman Sidney Kidman, farm machinery manufacturer H. V. McKay, and author Jeannie Gunn.
Compton started his partnership with Helen when he was 25 and president of the Presbyterian Fellowship for Brisbane. He was at a church camp at Alexandra Headland on the Sunshine Coast. He made a speech to farewell a missionary heading to Vanuatu, cracked a joke and saw a girl in the crowd smile at the remark.
That was 60 years ago. They have four children – Wendy, 57, a high-school teacher in Brisbane; Robyn, 55, a dietitian in Melbourne; Paul, 52, a banker in London, and Lyndel, 49, a cancer nurse at Swindon, also in England. Each of his four children has two of his or her own.
Compton worked at the smallgoods factory, then the Commonwealth Bank in Toowoomba, and studied at night to become an accountant. When he was 24 he heard that the Presbyterian Church was looking for a fundraiser to help build St Andrew’s War Memorial Hospital on Wickham Terrace in inner Brisbane’s Spring Hill.

He was so successful at tapping wealthy old Scotsmen on the shoulder that he soon set up his own fundraising company, which became Everald Compton International. He ran it for 40 years, establishing offices in Brisbane, Wellington in New Zealand, Johannesburg, Vancouver and London. He raised money for politicians across the spectrum – Gough Whitlam, John Howard, Bob Hawke and Joh Bjelke-Petersen. He met Joh’s future wife, Flo, when she was Florence Gilmour and teaching bible classes at St Andrew’s on Creek St, in Brisbane’s CBD. He ran campaigns for the restoration of English cathedrals – at Ely, Worcester, ­Gloucester, Winchester and Portsmouth – and raised money for South Africa’s Progressive Federal Party, which eventually helped to free Nelson Mandela.
All along Compton wanted to help a group in Australia he saw as being especially needy and in 1976 was one of the founders of National Seniors Australia, which boasts 250,000 members.
Since then, he has lobbied prime ministers for a better deal for older Australians and built three retirement ­villages – Compton Gardens at Aspley, Comptons at Caboolture, and Brookland Village at southside Sunnybank.
In 2009 he negotiated with then-federal treasurer Wayne Swan, his local member, an increase to the single pension of about $33, but he says much more is needed now to provide the elderly with a decent standard of living.
Compton gives a series of media interviews after his address to the National Press Club and talks over his ideas with Labor powerbroker Anthony Albanese. He ends the night tweeting: “Quiet scotch after 11 hours with #Pension Study Team … A small step towards justice for pensioners”.
Back at home with Helen in Aspley, he’s preparing for an open day at the nearby Bald Hills mosque to strengthen ties with his neighbourhood’s Muslim community. It is a rapidly changing world. He recently tweeted: “As committed Elder of my #Church can I say we have no right to say a word re #samesexmarriage in light of our infamous record on #childabuse”.
He has little faith in the present government, saying that he is “terribly disappointed” with Malcolm Turnbull. “I worked with Malcolm during the Republican movement in 1999. He was arrogant then, but decisive. He’d make snap decisions and you couldn’t contest them. He alienated so many people. But as Prime Minister, he is now so indecisive.”

Compton says the first Federal Budget he heard was delivered by Harold Holt more than half a century ago and the government’s funding for pensioners has not improved since then.
He has dealt with every prime minister since Menzies. “I had a fair bit to do with Whitlam,” he says. “He was an enormously impressive personality – the problem was he would imagine these great things but couldn’t get them done. He had some dreadful hillbillies with him like Jim Cairns and Rex Connor, who dragged him down. Malcolm Fraser was a very ordinary prime minister, and Bob Hawke was the best negotiator I’d met until Julia Gillard.
“Bob had a marvellous ability to be everybody’s friend. Paul Keating had the best economic brain but also an ability to make people dislike him. His ideas – such as compulsory superannuation – were brilliant.
“John Howard was probably the best grassroots pol­itician I dealt with. Old John could smell trouble coming a mile away and the Howard era was the most prosperous in my lifetime. We had 11 good years with him at the helm.”
Compton says he has “a very low opinion of Kevin Rudd” and cheered his downfall. “You never knew what he was going to do next. He was one of the most intelligent blokes I’ve dealt with but he couldn’t deal with people.”
Julia Gillard, he says, had a poor public image, like an old schoolmarm, “but one on one she was superb – a great negotiator. She had an attractive personality, which didn’t come through to the public”.
Tony Abbott, he says, was “totally out of his depth … a very rigid thinker driven by religion and hard-right ­ideology” – and he says Turnbull is only surviving because there is no natural successor.
Compton says the present Federal Government must do more for the growing population of ageing Australians. “By 2050 there will be 50,000 Australians over 100,” he says, “and the largest population group in Australia will be aged 85-100. The Government seems totally oblivious. Turnbull only has a Minister for Aged Care – that represents only about one per cent of the ageing question.”
The clock on Compton’s wall chimes and reminds him of more meetings he has scheduled.
When he gets a chance to relax with a smoky, peaty ­single-malt Scotch, he’s working on a new book about Australia’s Federation. He says it is “staggeringly stupid” that such a wealthy country as Australia still treats its oldest ­citizens so poorly.
Last week he told his audience in Canberra: “The Government hopes that by three o’clock this afternoon everyone will have forgotten about this, and I just want to let them know that in whatever short years I may have left on this planet, I’m going to relentlessly pursue them. We’ve come to the point in the history of Australia where the ­pension has to come out of politics and enter the area of human justice.
“As Gough Whitlam would have said if he were up here: ‘It’s time’.”

The Man on the Twenty Dollar Notes

The Story of Flynn of the Inland – one of Australia’s greatest sons

Everald’s latest book will be launched in Cloncurry tomorrow 8 April 2016 and in Brisbane city on April 18.

This is a book every Australian should read with a review by Tim Costello, Chief Executive of World Vision Australia.

front

Full details about the book and how to order

Tax Reform and the Politics of Fear

There are thousands of laws that provide the basis of governing our nation. Every one of them can be improved in order to meet the needs of a changing world, particularly taxation laws, as they are an out of date mix of temporary political fixes that were deemed necessary to win elections. Continue reading “Tax Reform and the Politics of Fear”