Johannes Bjelke-Petersen: The Lord's Premier

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Univ. of Queensland Press, 2002 - 249 pages
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A saviour to some, reviled by others, Johannes Bjelke-Petersen became the butt of jokes and even assassination attempts. His influence spread well beyond Queensland, and in the mid-1970s he put an unknown french polisher into the Senate to help rub out the Whitlam government.Young Joh had been a loner who worked hard to overcome crippling childhood polio and the poverty of life on his family's farm. Enduring a long apprenticeship as an opposition backbencher, he finally made it to the top, bringing to his old-style autocratic rule a more media-savvy appeal to the electorate.As this long-awaited biography reveals, Joh was as cunning as he was ruthless throughout his forty-year political career. Rae Wear analyses in detail his political psyche, his unique leadership style and the reasons for his electoral support, taking into account his Danish immigrant background and lifelong Christian piety.Essential reading for anyone interested in Australian politics, this biographical study explains in depth, for the first time, Bjelke-Petersen's unlikely elevation to the premiership and his ultimate disgrace amid revelations of widespread corruption.
 

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Contents

The Family
1
Religion
19
Education and Occupation
34
The Politician
45
In Government
67
The Premier and the Party Organisation
86
Breakdown in Relations
109
The Premier and Cabinet
130
The Premier and the Coalition
153
The Premier Parliament and Federalism
173
The Premier and Public Administration
186
The Premier the Media and the People 173 186
211
Bibliography
226
Index
241
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