Ever since the declaration of a State of Emergency for the Springbok Tour of 1971, the political strategies of Joh Bjelke-Petersen have been intimately connected to the issue of law and order. He has scarcely been alone in this in Australia. But the heady success of the Petersen machine is illustrated by the memory of some of the lesser conservative figures who sought political advantage in the same way — Askin in NSW, Bolte in Victoria, Court in Western Australia. Law and order politics does not explain Petersen’s survival, but it has been indispensable to his projection of himself as the embodiment of all that is good for Queensland and the intractable opponent of enemies within the state and beyond.
Recommended CitationFinnane, Mark; McPhee, Peter; Aarons, Eric; and Fairleigh, Lyndell, Briefings: 1. A Thinner Blue Line 2. A (Not So) Distant Mirror 3. After the Great Crash 4. Profile: Angela Carter, Australian Left Review, 1(102), 1987, 2-5,7.