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Who’s got the power in Canberra?

By johnboy - 23 November 2006 29

As an excercise for you dear readers.

Where does power reside in the Canberra community?

Most of us know about Terry Snow but he is by no means alone. Who else is a mover and/or shaker?

Sitting politicians and departmental secretaries we’ll take as a given.

What’s Your opinion?


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29 Responses to
Who’s got the power in Canberra?
Woody Mann-Caruso 3:25 pm 23 Nov 06

Man, my typing was all over the place there.

Woody Mann-Caruso 3:24 pm 23 Nov 06

If protests dictated government policy, not a lot would get done. Take the dragway for example – which lobby group should the government side with? Is there any point in consulting when there are two diametrically-opposed views? It’s best for governments to obtain expert advice about the community needs as a whole (versus what small parts of it wants) and then to act decisively.n

seepi 2:39 pm 23 Nov 06

Also I think the ACT govt has thrown cuation to the winds and decided to pay no attention to the public. The huge protest at Griffith library was a clear demonstration of public support, but the govt has chosen to ignore it.

S4anta 2:27 pm 23 Nov 06

Chris, some of us at RA come under the bracketted point after choice bro.

Chris S 1:48 pm 23 Nov 06

S4santa, you are right – to a point.

The problem is that very few Canberrans actually exercise their right to actually influence outcomes. This could be through lack of opportunity (many double-income partners with little time available), apathy (unless it happens to be right in their backyard), or choice (where public servants need to be careful as to how active they can become in social/political issues).

I think it’s a real shame that too many Canberrans are don’t get involved, or are armchair critics. I’m not saying this about all of you, but it seems that a number of Riotacters are just critical of things without actually doing anything to change things. Notable exceptions are those big-hearted among you who are members of the SES, bushfire brigades and the like.

VYBerlinaV8 1:37 pm 23 Nov 06

I suggest that the partners from the local office of the big 4 Accounting and big 5 Law firms wield a quiet but powerful influence around the place.

S4anta 1:30 pm 23 Nov 06

As far as I am concerned, the real power of canberra, lies in the Canberrans themselves. As a city/society/whatever, there are higher than average figures for income, education and social understanding. In my opinion, as a result there tends to be alot more community activism, and social awareness of the issues that affect us as a whole. That is before you add the fact that as a ‘public service’ town, there is a higher than average understanding of the way government works, and to how affect change in said system.

As an individual, Mr Graeme Evans The Mayor of Belconnen.

Growling Ferret 1:24 pm 23 Nov 06

CMFEU and their stooges in control of the ACT Legislative Assembly – think the favourable tax and planning breaks given to Clubs ACT and other Union related organisations…

Who are the big businessmen – the big development owners? Terry Snow obviously, QIC owns half of Civic office space – who else are the big players?

Ari 1:20 pm 23 Nov 06

Jorian Gardner …. sorry, just kidding.

Ralph 1:13 pm 23 Nov 06

Opus Dei.

johnboy 1:13 pm 23 Nov 06

I’m not talking about power in Government as much as power in the community (although i concede the two are related).

The big four lobbyists are: Gavin Anderson & Co, Parker & Partners, CrosbyTextor and Government Relations Australia.

But as they rarely excercise their power for their own benefit let’s move on to individuals.

Ari 1:11 pm 23 Nov 06

Here’s the link, Sulla.

Sulla 1:08 pm 23 Nov 06

Hmmm…

Check out John Warhurst’s comments on the topic of lobbyists in today’s Canberra Times.

(Sorry, no link)

andy 1:03 pm 23 Nov 06

why, Johnboy, of course.

Chris S 12:28 pm 23 Nov 06

There’s a large, shadowy and unaccountable underworld in this city, made up of lobbyists, companies that contribute money (and favours/influence) much of which is unaccounted for to political parties, and large employer bodies such as MBA/HIA/PCA.

These are unelected people and bodies that are nameless and faceless, but have significant access to politicians. They also have the influence to be able to call in favours.

For example, the PCA charges its members something in the order of $30,000 each purely for lobbying purposes. Much of this goes on the lobby companies themselves, but a lot goes toward currying favour through various “incentives” provided to pollies.

Developers and other businesses don’t spend a lot of money on lobbying unless it is worth their while. It’s interesting that the developers themselves are calling for an end to political donations, as even they realise how unethical it is.

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