Tony Abbott representing Australia

Oct 28, 2014

Q. When you think of Tony Abbott representing Australia at international conferences and meetings, how confident are you that he will do a good job in representing Australia to the international community? 

 

 Total

 

Vote Labor

Vote Lib/Nat

Vote Greens

Vote other

 

Jun 2014

Total very/somewhat confident

49%

23%

91%

16%

34%

45%

Very confident

17%

2%

42%

2%

8%

18%

Somewhat confident

32%

21%

49%

14%

26%

27%

Not at all confident

47%

74%

9%

82%

63%

50%

Don’t know

4%

3%

1%

2%

3%

5%

49% (up 4% since June) say they are very or somewhat confident that Tony Abbott will do a good job in representing Australia to the international community and 47% (down 3%) say they are not at all confident.

Best Treasurer

Aug 26, 2014

Q. Which of the following do you think has been Australia’s best Treasurer?

  

Total

 

 

Vote Labor

Vote Lib/Nat

Vote Greens

Vote other

Paul Keating

23%

36%

12%

21%

29%

Peter Costello

30%

16%

54%

18%

24%

Wayne Swan

8%

16%

3%

8%

6%

Joe Hockey

5%

10%

1%

4%

Don’t know

35%

33%

21%

52%

38%

Of the four options given, 30% think Peter Costello has been Australia’s best Treasurer and 23% think Paul Keating had been the best Treasurer.

36% of Labor voters favour Paul Keating and 54% of Liberal/National voters favour Peter Costello.

War Against Iraq

Jun 24, 2014

Q. It is 11 years since Australia went to war in Iraq. Do you think it was the right or wrong decision for Australia to go to war against Iraq?

 

Total

 

Vote Labor

Vote Lib/Nat

Vote Greens

Vote other

 

April 2013

Right decision

25%

17%

39%

7%

24%

23%

Wrong decision

50%

57%

38%

69%

55%

51%

Don’t know

25%

25%

23%

24%

22%

26%

50% believe Australia made the wrong decision to go to war in Iraq and 25% think it was the right decision. These results are not significantly different from those when this question was asked in April last year.

Those most likely to say it was the wrong decision were Greens voters (69%), Labor voters (57%) and people aged 55+ (60%).

39% of Liberal/National voters and 29% of men thought it was the right decision.

More or less fair/equal

Jun 11, 2014

Q. Do you think Australian society is more or less equal and fair than 20 years ago?

 

Total

 

Vote Labor

Vote Lib/Nat

Vote Greens

Vote Other

Total more fair/equal

28%

23%

38%

14%

22%

Total less fair/equal

43%

51%

27%

70%

59%

A lot more equal and fair

7%

6%

10%

3%

2%

A little more equal and fair

21%

17%

28%

11%

20%

About the same

23%

18%

31%

14%

14%

A little less equal and fair

21%

23%

19%

35%

23%

A lot less equal and fair

22%

28%

8%

35%

36%

Don’t know

7%

6%

4%

1%

5%

28% think that Australian society is more equal and fair than 20 years ago and 43% think it is less equal and fair. 23% think it is about the same.

Greens voters (70%), other party voters (59%) and Labor voters (51%) are more likely to think it is less equal/fair. 38% of Liberal/National voters think it is more equal/fair and 31% think it is about the same.

Younger respondents are split over whether Australia is more equal/fair (for age 18-34 – 35% more/32% less) while older respondents are more likely to think it is less equal/fair (for age 55+ – 22% more/53% less).

 

Importance of equality/fairness

Jun 11, 2014

Q. How important is equality/fairness to Australian society?

 

Equality

 

Fairness

 

Total

Vote Labor

Vote Lib/Nat

Vote Greens

Vote Other

Total

Vote Labor

Vote Lib/Nat

Vote Greens

Vote Other

Very important

51%

62%

42%

63%

41%

62%

72%

44%

77%

77%

Somewhat important

38%

32%

47%

21%

49%

30%

20%

47%

14%

21%

Not very important

6%

3%

8%

12%

6%

4%

4%

6%

4%

1%

Not at all important

1%

1%

1%

5%

2%

2%

2%

3%

4%

1%

Don’t know

3%

3%

1%

2%

2%

2%

Note: Half the sample was asked about “equality” and half asked about “fairness”.

51% of respondents think equality is very important compared to 62% who say fairness is very important.

While Liberal/National voters gave very similar answers to both equality and fairness, Labor voters, Greens voters and other voters think fairness is more important.

National Debt Level

May 13, 2014

Q. Compared to other developed countries, do you think Australia’s national debt is higher, lower or about the same?

 

Total

 

 

Vote Labor

Vote Lib/Nat

Vote Greens

Vote Other

 

May 2013

August 2013

Total higher

22%

18%

30%

16%

13%

25%

25%

Total lower

45%

52%

39%

61%

46%

48%

46%

A lot higher

7%

5%

11%

5%

3%

9%

10%

A little higher

15%

13%

19%

11%

10%

16%

15%

About the same

20%

19%

22%

11%

23%

18%

19%

A little lower

24%

23%

28%

23%

23%

29%

24%

A lot lower

21%

29%

11%

38%

23%

19%

22%

Don’t know

13%

11%

8%

11%

17%

10%

10%

Just 22% of Australians believe that Australia’s national debt is higher than other developed countries. 45% think it is lower, and just 20% believe it is about the same.

These results are not significantly different from when the question was asked in May or August 2013.

Lib/Nat voters were more likely to think that Australia’s national debt is higher than other developed countries (30%). Labor (52%) and Green (62%) voters were more likely to think that it is lower.

There were no significant differences by age.

Uranium exploration and mining

Nov 7, 2012

Q. Do you approve or disapprove of expanding uranium exploration and mining in Australia?

 

Total

Vote Labor

Vote Lib/Nat

Vote Greens

Total approve

41%

36%

54%

27%

Total disapprove

41%

47%

28%

64%

Strongly approve

8%

7%

11%

9%

Approve

33%

29%

43%

18%

Disapprove

23%

30%

15%

26%

Strongly disapprove

18%

17%

13%

38%

Don’t know

19%

17%

18%

9%

Respondents were evenly divided over expanding uranium exploration and mining in Australia – 41% approve and 41% disapprove.

Labor voters and Greens voters were more likely to disapprove while more than half (54%) Liberal/National voters approve.

Men split 56% approve/30% disapprove compared to women 24% approve/50% disapprove.

High Dollar Sings The Blues For Auto Workers

Aug 14, 2012

What do auto workers in Canada and Australia have in common? A high dollar spells bad news for jobs—and, absent government action, is another dagger in the struggle to maintain a middle-class living.

Let’s start with Canada, where auto workers are locked in difficult contract negotiations. The main reason? The stronger Canadian dollar:

But the dollar’s high value, which most economists anticipate will continue, has more than obliterated the traditional cost advantage Canadian auto plants once enjoyed. In 2009, when contracts were renegotiated after the rescue of General Motors and Chrysler, the Canadian dollar was worth about 78 American cents. Last week, it traded briefly at just over $1.

Regardless of the outcome of those talks, the strong currency, and higher wages for Canadian workers, seem likely to continue the shrinking of the Canadian auto industry since its peak in 1999. The underlying issue is how much that decline will continue.

It’s a similar story with the Australian auto industry. The high Australian dollar, driven largely by the resource industry bubble, has eaten away at the Australian auto industry’s sales. But, the answer to that does not have to be surrender. It requires as Paul Bastian, national secretary of the Australian Manufacturing Workers Union, pointed out not to long ago, a national strategy of co-investment and a local purchasing strategy:

Co-Investment in the car industry provides supply-side support – but to properly realise the benefits of the Australian car industry we need to do more on the demand side.

In short, the co-investment scheme must be backed by a plan to buy Australian.

Over the next twenty years federal, state and local governments will purchase around 1.5 million cars. It’s obvious that these cars should all come from Australia – but that’s not the reality.

The bottom line is a question of values that go beyond the price of a dollar and brings one right to the doorstep of the government. Governments can do a lot to bring down the price of its currency. But, absent that willingness, governments can make it a national priority to make sure that industries providing good-paying jobs continue to thrive—no matter what the agenda of lower-wage seeking corporations might be.


@jonathantasini

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