Vale GMH Elizabeth. Holden, You Served Australia Well.

Today’s Guest Author is the redoubtable Puffy the Magic Dragon. Thank you so much for this – it is, unfortunately, an occasion to be commemorated.

On November 29, 1948 Prime Minister Ben Chifley unveiled the first Holden 48-215, which became affectionately known as the “FX”.

On October 20, 2017, the last Holden was built in Australia.

Think about that a moment.

Today, no Prime Minister witnessed the closure of this proud industry. Where was our Coalition Prime Minister? He was on a Victorian radio station this morning declaring how ‘sad’ he is about it. PM Turnbull assures us the workers have found jobs, are studying or are retired. He has little to say about the effects on workers in related businesses, or the emotions and circumstances of the former workers saying goodbye to an era.

Now General Motors Holden is no longer manufacturing cars in Australia. To be accurate nobody is manufacturing cars in Australia anymore. No more of these will be exported.

The Elizabeth factory is the reason the Town of Elizabeth was built. But it is not just Elizabeth that suffers or South Australia. Our nation is the lesser for this loss. These manufacturing enterprises are as much research centres, trade schools, design hubs and robotics developers as they are car-builders. How dumb do you have to be not to support that? Today I watched with many others from all over Australia. I spoke to one family who flew in to Adelaide just to be here today to say goodbye. Anger at the politics behind this disgrace is high.

So many people including those from allied industries and businesses were employed because we made vehicles.

But a short-sighted union-hating Liberal/National Coalition government brought that to an end. We lose an industry, we lose the expertise, the skills and the manufacturing base because of their ideology. None of it made economic sense.

The last Holden rolled off the line today, and the workers were bussed out to a farewell shindig.

The media cameras recorded the event. Maybe Joe Hockey can run it on loop while he smokes his cigars.

Labor Opposition Leader Bill Shorten hit the nail on the head talking to a group of school children.

“Look over there, kids, at that old Holden. Australia used to be a country that built cars,” Mr Shorten said.

“As of tomorrow, we’re not building cars anymore and the silly old government of the Liberals just couldn’t give a stuff.”

He assured his 20 pupils that manufacturing, engineering, maths and science jobs would still be around into the future. (source SBS )

Labor says Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull’s lack of comment on the closure is proof his government does not care. Amen to that.

Finally, let’s pay a tribute to the workers who made the whole thing work. My late husband, with 20 years of service after his immigration from England being one of them. A member of his union, of course, as a Spares Chaser, (he found parts to fill orders from dealers) he enjoyed his work and made a good life on a worker’s wage.

A proud working-class man alongside proud working-class women. Building Australian cars.

531 thoughts on “Vale GMH Elizabeth. Holden, You Served Australia Well.

  1. Cash still avoiding eye contact with Labor senators. She’s still as twitchy as that cockatoo on coke.

    Oh Gawd! Hanson is there!

  2. We just established that Cash’s staffer has a personal phone he can be contacted on, which her chief of staff has one record. I’m just wondering now, seeing as the staffer could just as easily leaked to the media on his personal mobile phone, why it wasn’t handed in last night along with everything else? Seems pretty shoddy.

    • Shoddy office management, both by Cash, by ROC and the FWO is something that’s coming across loud and clear in this business. If they are all to be believed none of them have a clue about their staffers’ backgrounds, their office friendships, their contact details or just about anything else.

      any terrorist organisation wanting to infiltrate Parliament House or a government body would do well to get someone a job in one of these offices. No-one would ever notice.

  3. Pretty obvious why Hanson has decided to turn up today when she rarely bothers with Senate estimates.

    • They are still in love

      Malcolm Farr‏Verified account

      Besties Hanson and Cash vigorously agreeing with each other. There’s a hug in this.

  4. Whew! Now I can get some housework done. What little I’ve read and seen, it is no surprise that they are all being very low key……….

  5. Just piecing this together from the evidence given by Cash. I can’t even begin to untangle the ROC/FWO timelines at the moment, far too tangled, so let’s concentrate on the staffer.

    1. He got a tip from the media regarding the time and place of the AWU raid, and what it was about. We have to assume that was on his official work mobile, as he still seems to be in possession of his personal mobile, and if it was the one involved it would be unthinkable that he could still have it. (according to the official story that is, which is the one I’m going on) So whoever called him was aware they were calling someone in his official capacity as a Cash staffer.

    2. He doesn’t mention it to her. He doesn’t mention it to any of the other staff he works with, even though he shares an office with three other staffers. He keeps this nugget to himself.

    3. What he does do is tip off other members of the media. Why? We’ll never know that one. But by doing so he immediately compromises the integrity and reputation of not only Cash’s department, but of the minister herself. After all, the media are all there at the raid, and some of them would have been there on his information. Obviously, if that gets out it puts her in a very awkward situation. He apparently doesn’t consider that aspect at all.

    4. Next day, Cash repeatedly denies in Estimates that any of her staff knew anything about the raid in advance, and that none of them tipped off the media. He keeps his trap shut.

    5. He accompanies her as she meets with Turnbull and denies that she or her staff knew anything about the raid. He keeps his trap shut.

    6. So she’s been inadvertently lying all day, and he does nothing about it, even though he knows that what she’s saying is completely wrong, and there’s a fair chance that’s going to get out. He keeps shtum.

    7. Then it does get out. Buzzfeed article. He waits another three hours while Cash continues to give false information to Estimates, then finally tells her around 6.30pm, tendering his resignation. All she does is go back to Esitmates and change her story. I mean, obviously she should be furious. He’s dumped her right in it, and made a liar of her for the whole day. The man’s a complete incompetent, right? Strangely, she’s not. She’s more worried that he might be upset over what’s come out.

    8. Does she want to get a hold of him and shake the truth out of him? Does she demand that this thing get resolved that day so that she’s not going around uninformed about anything else? No. She tries to call him once at midnight (on what number? – she said she only had one for him) can’t get through and leaves it at that. No meeting the next morning before Estimates, no meeting before Senate QT either. It can wait, apparently.


    Does any of that sound in the least bit plausible? Either we have the stupidest man ever to hold a job in a minster’s department AND a minister strangely incurious as to why that might be, or there’s a lot of misinformation being bandied about.

    • No we have the stupidest woman ever to hold a minster’s job in the stupidest government since the Abbott one
      solved the puzzle for you//

    • Not at all plausible.

      I think this is how it went.

      Cash lied her arse off yesterday in estimates, denying FIVE times that leak to the media.

      Just before QT she was summoned to Turnbull’s office. It was not for a QT briefing, as she claims. It was a ‘OMG! What are we gunna do now?” meeting.

      At some point a strategy was devised – maybe it was at that meeting with Turnbull, maybe it was after QT, maybe it was just with strategists who had to coach Cash on her responses.

      Liberal senators on the estimates committee were asked to gerrymander until the dinner break, which they dutifully did, to make sure Cash’s revelations did not make the evening news.

      De Garis agreed to take one for the team and possibly no-one thought to make it look real by asking him to make sure he made a display of handing over his work phone and any other equipment he might have.

      De Garis will probably go off on a nice holiday now, returning only when all this has blown over. He will be rewarded for his services to the Liberal Party with a new job, perhaps a lobbyist’s position or if he is a very good boy he might eventually be offered a safe Liberal seat.

      Cash had rehearsed her lines but couldn’t be fully convincing because she just couldn’t manage eye contact during questioning.

      Her attempt (more strategy) to make it look not so bad by continually mentioning Penny Wong’s staffer fell apart when Doug Cameron took her to task on that line.

      The government will rel;y on their shills to gloss over the whole mess. Already Sky is doing their best to help. Sam Maiden has been wailing about everyone forgetting this is really all about Bill Shorten’s criminal behaviour and was talking about Penny Wong not resigning when her staffer talked to NZ Labour. PvO has mentioned Julia Gillard not resigning when her staffer tipped off protestors about that Australia Day event Abbott was going to attend. Andrew Leigh pointed out that neither of these were matters that involved the AFP or a government body. How very unhelpful of him!

      QT should be interesting, unless Fizza decides to cancel it.

  6. Tony Burke to the prime minister: Does he expect Australians to believe that the media reported yesterday an allegation that the Employment Minister’s office had leaked the raids? The Employment Minister then came to the Prime Minister and said she herself had not personally leaked the raids, and the Prime Minister, with all his training as a cross examiner, didn’t think to ask if her office had leaked the raids, which was the only allegation that had been made? Did the Prime Minister in fact ask this question or had he already been advised it was safer not to ask?”

    Turnbull – waffle, blah blah, waffle …. Why don’t you ask about the NEG?

    The Opposition are not interested in Turnbull’s determined focus on energy. They want to talk about Cash, ROC and that raid.

    And – I don’t know how Barnaby can show his beetroot face in QT after yesterday’s story about him and his two office affairs, the abortion that resulted from one of those affairs and his serial drunken stalking and molestation of teenage girls and young women. Tunbull should pack him off somewhewre and keep him away from the cameras.

    This story –

  7. Dutton demonstrating he is getting a bit too emotionally involved in his response to the removal of a Labor member “ the IQ of the opposition has risen already” , north, norty, Peter

  8. Another great video from Jordies where he slams the media for making the marriage survey overshadow more important issues.

    I wonder if there’s any more youtube personalities like him that do similar stuff?

    • Jordie just keeps getting better. I can’t think of anyone else doing this sort of thing. Huw Parkinson, who does occasional video mash-ups for Insiders, is good, but he can tend to favour the government – not surprising when you consider who he works for,

  9. NZ- 3 women PMs in the top job for 11 of the last 20 years. Go Jacinda..Her aims the antithesis of Truffles lot . The word empathy stood out for me because a feature of so many in Truffles’ crew is the lack of empathy.

    “New Zealand PM, promising ’empathetic’ government………………………….. tackle climate change, eradicate child poverty and improve the lives of the country’s most vulnerable people.”

  10. While everyone is looking at Cash , other stuff is happening –

    Turnbull’s Uluru statement rejection is ‘mean-spirited bastardry’ – legal expert
    PM has reportedly voted against embedding Indigenous voice to parliament in constitution, calling it ‘too ambitious’

    Senior Indigenous and legal voices have criticised Malcolm Turnbull for reportedly rejecting the Uluru statement in favour of a symbolic model of constitutional recognition, calling it “a despicable act of mean-spirited bastardry”.

    News Corp has reported that Turnbull voted against a submission in favour of the Uluru statement recommendations, which include embedding an Indigenous voice to parliament in the constitution, at a cabinet meeting this week, saying a referendum proposing that change was “too ambitious” and would not get majority support.

    He instead reportedly suggested a return to a symbolic recognition of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people in Australia’s founding document

  11. from The Guardian comments for your enjoyment


    As their lies become exceedingly brash,

    Like those of one Michaelia Cash.

    Front bench and back,

    Deserve the sack.

    It’s now time to take out the trash.

  12. Hard to believe from this vantage point that the AWU raid was the Turnbull government’s best shot at ‘changing the subject’ from the NBN and putting the heat back onto Shorten. It’s just been such an enormous fiasco. Even if they get away with protecting Cash’s ministerial position, they’ve achieved nothing better than further tarnishing their own brand and eroding whatever trust Australians still had in them.

    That’s their best-case scenario. Their worst-case scenario would probably see them out of government. They’ve pretty much taken the bazooka, turned it around, and fired into their own faces.

    Spending all of today’s QT on the back foot, to the point of gagging debate at the same time they were openly pledging support for Cash… it’s not what they would have been expecting. I’ve caught up with QT, more or less, and it looks as if Turnbull spent much of the time critiquing Labor MPs’ style of questioning. That’s a bad look.

  13. Just consider for a moment the implications of this. Journalists are concerned that reportage such as that of Alice Workman will ruin their relationships…

    The point of these relationships – ostensibly – is that they allow you a level of access that enables you to do your job as a journalist more effectively. As a reporter your job is to report, and you ought to embrace the level of access you have as a chance to report better and more useful stuff. But if the price you pay for the access you have is not being able to print that stuff, your job as a journalist is futile.

    These journalists are rating their privilege more highly than their vocation. And they’re prepared to debase their profession, making themselves little more than PR reps for whoever wields the most power, in order to protect that privilege. I don’t know what you’d call that, but I’d call it corrupt.

    • The usual candidate should Brandis be persuaded to leave is Christian Porter. Not much better than Cash though, just Cash in a frock.

  14. How could Corgi and the Conservatives delay anything? There’s only one of them in the senate.

  15. About gagging debate –

    When Windsor and Oakeshott controlled the Reps they said they would never gag debate, and they didn’t. They always voted in favour of SSOs. How they actually voted on whatever motion was being debated was another matter. They just believed there should always be debate.

    Now we have a government that will not allow any debate they do not initiate themselves. All this moving the member be no longer heard is dictatorial and stifles debate. It goes against all the government’s blather about ‘free speech’. They are too stupid and too self-obsessed to see that.

  16. Getting overlooked in all the attention given to who said what to the media – another Cash admission from estimates.

    Cash personally approved taxpayers footing Hadgkiss legal bill

    Employment Minister Michaelia Cash has revealed she personally approved taxpayers funding the legal costs of former building watchdog Nigel Hadgkiss who was subsequently forced to resign by the Coalition after admitting he contravened the Fair Work Act.

    The government said the precise cost of his legal defence had yet to be finalised but The Australian has previously revealed the bill for Mr Hadgkiss’s legal costs could be up to $400,000

    There are so many reasons to sack Cash, yet there she is, still in cabinet with Turnbull staunchly defending her. She must know where an awful lot of bodies (or maybe dead cats) are buried.

  17. If true, what a laugh.

    Referring to Cash claiming to be unable to appear at tsenate estimates meeting tomorrow because she said she had engagements in Perth.

    • I couldn’t find any details of flight cancellations; the scheduled 7pm CBR-PER flights (QF, VA) left around 8:30pm after the storms cleared.

  18. Just been Galaxy polled. Specific questions referred to same sex marriage, not marriage equality.

    DD & DS both thought it was amusing that I was tickled to answer the questions, they maintain their “purity and innocence” in this sort of thing while yelling out which number I should press. Hah! See how we take this polling lark so seriously in our house * puppy-dog eyed innocent grins*

    Question: If, as looks likely, the “YES” vote carries the day, how will the vast majority of Australians react when the Government does not pass the legislation as expected?

    • I can’t imagine what it would be like to receive one of those letters when in good health, let alone in such a condition that death within some short period of time was a distinct possibility. Bastards. The lot of them……

  19. Good morning Dawn Patrollers.

    Waleed Aly declares the AWU raids to have been a political act. His last paragraph nicely sums it all up.
    Mark Kenny reckons Cash is safe. But he does make three valid points in conclusion.
    Adam Gartrell says Cash is just clinging to her job.
    Laura Tingle describes it as “a disaster for Turnbull, Cash and government”. Ouch! Google.
    Judith Ireland looks at the concept of “off the record” as it applied to the AFP raid issue.
    This is interesting. The Australian reports that major television networks ¬received a tip-off about the Australian Workers Union raid, ahead of a separate leak from the office of Employment Minister Michaelia Cash. It reveals Labor attacks on the government over tipping-off the “television cameras” could be in question, with new information revealing other tips were made to newsrooms in Sydney and Melbourne, where the raids were taking place. Google.
    Michelle Grattan’s contribution on the matter is worth a look.
    Police raids on political parties or associated institutions at any time should raise concerns – and the hackles – among democratically minded citizens.,10862
    Katharine Murphy – When political theatre goes off-script.

  20. Section 2 . . .

    “Pull the other one Minister”, says Richo. “No one is buying your denial”. Google.
    Here’s Tony Wright’s take on Cash at Estimates.
    And Tony Wright interviews Constable Godwin Gretch about the raids.
    Jennifer Hewett says it was another own goal for the government. Google.
    And Sally McManus has written a piece on what the raids tell us about the Turnbull government.
    John Hewson calls for greater scrutiny of defence spending.
    James Campbell is disgusted with the government’s descent into the gutter this week. Google.
    Jacqui Maley warns us about the rearguard action that will be fought by conservatives after the SSM survey returns a YES vote.
    Michael Koziol writes about one of the conservatives’ view that homosexuality is a “disordered form of behaviour”.
    Sean Nicholls says that Cory Bernardi could become Labor’s best friend by 2019.

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