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Samizdata, derived from Samizdat /n. - a system of clandestine publication of banned literature in the USSR [Russ.,= self-publishing house]

Someone please explain the election in Australia to me

In Australia there is a budget surplus, unlike most nations. Taxation, in total, is lower than almost all other Western nations. Unemployment is about 4% of the workforce – the lowest it has been for decades. Both industrial output and GDP are growing at more than 4% (higher than almost all nations in the Western world), and this growth has been going for years.

And everyone tells me that Mr Howard is going to lose the general election.

Why? Someone explain this please.

“It is Iraq” – but Australia has had virtually no casualties in Iraq. I can not believe that the nation that suffered the mass murder of its citizens in Bali is going to submit to the will of Al Qaeda (which is what running away from Iraq would be).

“It is Kyoto” – but this agreement did not even limit India or China (the latter the biggest producer of C02 emissions), even the Democrats in the American Senate were not interested in ratifying such an absurdly biased agreement. Why should Australians wish to do so?

No I do not understand. Why should Australians wish to throw away their economy? All their prospects for prosperity tossed away on unlimited power for the unions and endless government Welfare State spending. I do not deny that most Australians are going to do this (I can not argue with a nine month opinion poll lead), but I do not understand why they are acting in this self-destructive way.

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