A Federal election is a long way out, but it seems the policy guidelines for the Liberals are already thought out.
Andrew Nikolic, the former Army officer (Wikipedia, HERE) recruited to try and win Bass, has been busy for months. Busy writing letters to The Examiner that is, and cosying up to whichever disenfranchised minority he thinks might get him a few votes. He’ll need more than a few. I’m sure Nikolic has looked at voting patterns in the northern electorate, and realises his party is toxic. Even in an environment where Labor has the appeal of week-old roadkill in summer.
If a Federal election were held tomorrow, 90 per cent of Bass voters would wonder why that nice Ferguson boy isn’t standing. The handful of diehard Liberals still alive in Launceston fought tooth and nail to get Sam McQuestin preselected ahead of Nikolic; possibly proof that Alzheimers is alive and well in the Liberal Party.
Nikolic has served overseas, but has never been reported Missing In Action. That’s a stark contrast to the current Bass MHA, who most voters wouldn’t be able to name. Jeff somebody I think. But being invisible has its advantages. At least when polling day comes, the Bass ticket will feature a relatively unknown Labor candidate, who many voters won’t see as tarnished with the Gillard train wreck. The Greens might even put up a candidate. Let’s hope it’s that nice Colgrave girl again.
Back to Nikolic. I’m not aware if he posted a response to my original Tasmanian Times blog. But he’s been vocal elsewhere, as anybody who has the occasional chuckle at Kelly Wilton’s pro-logging advertorial on Facebook will know.
Here’s what he said about Jarvis (in response to Monday’s article, Travels around Tasmania with some latte sippers):
`Jarvis Cocker’s article avoids the obvious fact that a sustainable forestry industry has coexisted with other industries in Tasmania for a very long time. He reveals much about his perspectives by referring to forestry as the ‘rape of natural resources,’ and makes broad, sweeping generalisations like ‘Tasmanians resent the concept of service.’
‘If you want to be taken seriously Mr Cocker, you need to strike a better balance between your own views about the forestry industry and the opinions of the families. businesses and communities that rely on it. And your condascending conclusion to the article (“Love Jarvis”) is inappropriate - I’m almost certain you wouldn’t experience a lot of love in forestry communities.’
I’d argue that Nikolic reveals much about his own perspectives in his virtual admission that is knowledge of Tasmania’s economy is steeped in 1950-era rhetoric. Yet the loggers love him.
If only they released that the working poor are the ideological enemy of the Liberal Party. And the obvious fact Nikolic is standing in Bass, a primarily urban electorate which is growing rapidly tired of endless handouts to an industry seemingly unwilling to stop sucking on the public teat.
I’ve offered my services to Andrew as a consultant, as I think he needs better advice than he is currently receiving. He’s got my email address. Over to you, Brigadier.
ps. Andrew, Dimity won’t like your poor spelling.
Monday on Tasmanian Times: Travels around Tasmania with some latte sippers