Topic archives: Country Liberal Party

Doing the Darwin Shuffle Part Two. The Northern Territory as a tax haven: 1982 to 1986

Doing the Darwin Shuffle Part Two. The Northern Territory as a tax haven: 1982 to 1986

April 15, 2018 1

Senator WALSH — I was aware of the fact that the Northern Territory is heavily dependent upon Commonwealth revenue [and] I have noted from time to time that nobody has a more voracious appetite for Commonwealth money than the present Northern Territory Chief Minister, although incongruously nobody is a more vocal critic of the Commonwealth taxes which raise the revenue which he so voraciously consumes. Senator Peter Walsh, Hansard, May 1983.

Doing the Darwin Shuffle. The Northern Territory as a tax haven. Part One: 1971 to 1982

Doing the Darwin Shuffle. The Northern Territory as a tax haven. Part One: 1971 to 1982

April 15, 2018

Graeme Lewis was part éminence grise, part bagman and part trouble-maker—as often within as without—for the NT's Country Liberal Party for more than forty years. Lewis passed away in early April while speaking from the floor of the 2018 annual conference of his beloved CLP. For all his apparent successes and failings—I'll leave the hagiography and excoriation for others—Graeme Lewis never held publicly elected office but nonetheless deserves respect as the Northern Territory's long-term political player par excellence. Lewis was also a prominent player in the Darwin Shuffle, the avoidance scheme that operated in the NT from at least the early 1970s through to the 1980s.

Failed state, failed party. The Country Liberal Party’s “long march” back to electoral credibility

Failed state, failed party. The Country Liberal Party’s “long march” back to electoral credibility

September 8, 2017 3

The CLP's 2016 election campaign was a shambles. Loughnane and Mitchell describe a"rudderless" and dramatically underfunded campaign. The Northern Myth understands that, notwithstanding the repeated assurances during the campaign that the CLP had a campaign war chest of $1 million, it was only after the election that the party's campaign debt of around $500,000 was revealed.

Memo to Michael Gunner: time to switch from “excitedly boring” to just “exciting”

Memo to Michael Gunner: time to switch from “excitedly boring” to just “exciting”

August 27, 2017

Gunner's real problems will be those he can do nothing—or little—about. The NT—a mendicant state that cannot pay its own way—is in a long downward spiral of economic and demographic decline. Mining and major industry is waiting for the next boom, the massive construction workforce at the Inpex gas plant in Darwin harbour will gradually wind down ahead of the plant coming on-stream in late 2018 or early 2019, and much more. The prospects for the Territory's economy over the next decade or so—a period during which Labor should continue to hold government—are little better than bleak.

Quintis, the NT government and picking major project losers

Quintis, the NT government and picking major project losers

August 16, 2017 1

Similarly curious is the fact that the Gunner government has seen fit to continue Quintis' major project status. As will become clear, if there were grounds for concern about the company's activities in the NT eighteen months ago, recent events warrant even closer attention.

‘Racist’ black-cladding business policy canned by NT government, referred to NT Police for investigation

‘Racist’ black-cladding business policy canned by NT government, referred to NT Police for investigation

August 6, 2017

CLP candidate Steve Brown described the indigenous employment and procurement polices as 'ill-considered' and 'blatantly racist.' Brown didn't elaborate on what aspects of his party's policies he considered 'racist' but it may be that he considered the policies unfairly favoured Aboriginal workers. Or discriminated against non-Aboriginal businesses or workers. Or both.

Has the Mansfield Inquiry into NT political donations been crippled from the start?

Has the Mansfield Inquiry into NT political donations been crippled from the start?

July 16, 2017

Foundation 51 has been the subject of intense media attention, and of formal enquiries by both the Australian and the NT electoral commissions and, despite years of digging by the media, NT Labor and others, no smoking gun has been, or is likely to be found. Foundation 51 was deregistered in May 2015.

Accountability and transparency? The Gunner government gets a Fail grade so far

Accountability and transparency? The Gunner government gets a Fail grade so far

May 25, 2017

The Gunner government’s end of semester Report Card gives it a fairly miserable failing D grade in the subject Accountability and Transparency. Teacher’s comment: “Occasional glimpses of promise and a marginal improvement on last year’s class (the worst the school has ever had) but much more effort is needed”.

“Follow the money, bruss!” A short history of electoral funding in the NT

“Follow the money, bruss!” A short history of electoral funding in the NT

May 23, 2017

I'll be in Darwin next week for the first phase of my research, focussing on documentary research and getting a few interviews. Drop me a line and we can catch up ...

The kill-or-be-killed world of NT politics, 2012 to 2016

November 29, 2016 1

Giles’s mood had changed from denial, to anger, to bargaining. He first denied any knowledge of an unfolding coup. Later he raged about the stupidity of it. And in our last conversation, just after midnight, before the phone was hurled from the balcony, he seemed to think there was a way to fight on.

Crocs in the Cabinet: The CLP, politics as farce and farce as politics

Crocs in the Cabinet: The CLP, politics as farce and farce as politics

November 27, 2016

This book is about the fall of an empire – about the power struggles and missteps and flawed characters that took the CLP from the Northern Territory’s dominant political force to near extinction, from an election win in 2012 to holding just two seats in Parliament four years later: Ben Smee and Christopher Walsh.

The NT electoral system is a joke. But can Hare-Clark fix it?

The NT electoral system is a joke. But can Hare-Clark fix it?

September 22, 2016 9

Welcome to politics as farce. There is little doubt that the NT electoral system is broken. The bigger question is how we fix it. Discuss.

Northern Territory – a tale of systemic dysfunctional governance

September 13, 2016 3

Political cronyism is hardly unheard of in other states, but its sheer extent and audacity in the Northern Territory over the last four years is deeply troubling. The higher levels of the public sector have been utterly politicised and any semblance of a professional public service able to advise government without fear or favour no longer exists.

The CLP got Gunnered …

The CLP got Gunnered …

August 28, 2016

On Saturday night, as gracious as Giles' speech was, so Gunner's was shambolic. "Tonight is extraordinary" he said three times while the baying crowd called for blood and more beer.

The Northern Territory: Political Hustlers, Deadbeats and Others

The Northern Territory: Political Hustlers, Deadbeats and Others

August 9, 2016

A cultural paradigm exists in Northern Territory politics that neither major party is yet to break. The CLP have never tried, the ALP sort of tried but unless the shackles of “NT Political jingoism” are broken, the NT will remain wedded to mediocrity at best, political suicide at worse.

Alison Anderson – a political force of nature hangs up her spurs

Alison Anderson – a political force of nature hangs up her spurs

August 4, 2016

We have to have faith in the future with young people like Chansey [Paech, Labor candidate for Namatjira]. The future is theirs. Our time has to come to an end at some stage at some stage and young people have to take over ... the same with Scotty [McConnell, Labor candidate] in Stuart – they are two very, very tough candidates and they are good human beings and yes, I support both of them. Alison Anderson, 3 August 2016.

Juvenile Detention in the NT: Statement by Adam Giles, Chief Minister of the Northern Territory

Juvenile Detention in the NT: Statement by Adam Giles, Chief Minister of the Northern Territory

July 26, 2016

"The Northern Territory Government does not resile from its tough approach to those who don’t want to respect others people’s property or safety.": Adam Giles,

Kenbi Land Claim handback, 21 June 2016. Speech by NLC CEO Joe Morrison.

Kenbi Land Claim handback, 21 June 2016. Speech by NLC CEO Joe Morrison.

June 21, 2016

Joe Morrison: "I want to take you on a short journey through the last four decades of the story of the Kenbi land claim. It’s been a tumultuous journey, so buckle up and come along for a bumpy ride through a long and tortuous history."

Unholy alliances:  The conservative forces at play against land rights: 1967-1976

Unholy alliances: The conservative forces at play against land rights: 1967-1976

June 20, 2016

Northern Territory Attorney General John Elferink: Land rights, he said, had become a “wall of imprisonment” blocking Aborigines from participating in northern development.

The rise and rapid fall of Minister Nathan Barrett

The rise and rapid fall of Minister Nathan Barrett

June 14, 2016

By early Saturday afternoon Nathan Barrett was gone from the NT Cabinet, a "horrified" Chief Minister Adam Giles telling the media that Barrett "had to go."