PHILADELPHIA BOOK NEWS
Date: 14 January 1911
Sir Johannes Bjelke-Petersen, (13 January 1911 – 23 April 2005) was an Australian politician. He was the longest-serving and longest-lived Premier of Queensland, holding office from 1968 to 1987, during which time the state underwent considerable economic development. His uncompromising conservatism (including his role in the downfall of the Whitlam federal government), his political longevity, and his leadership of a government that, in its later years, was revealed to be institutionally corrupt, made him one of the best-known and most controversial political figures of 20th century Australia.
Bjelke-Petersen's Country (later National) Party controlled Queensland despite consistently receiving the smallest number of votes out of the state's leading three parties, achieving the result through a notorious system of electoral malapportionment that resulted in rural votes having a greater value than those cast in city electorates. The effect earned Bjelke-Petersen the nickname of "the Hillbilly Dictator". Yet he was a highly popular figure among conservative voters and over the course of his 19 years as premier he tripled the number of people who voted for his party and doubled the party's percentage vote. After the Liberals pulled out of the government in 1983, Bjelke-Petersen reduced his former coalition partners to a mere six seats in an election held later that year. In 1985 Bjelke-Petersen launched a campaign to move into federal politics to become prime minister, though the campaign was eventually aborted.
Bjelke-Petersen was a divisive premier and earned himself a reputation as a "law and order" politician with his repeated use of police force against street demonstrators and strongarm tactics with trade unions, leading to frequent descriptions of Queensland under his leadership as a police state. From 1987 his administration came under the scrutiny of a royal commission into police corruption and its links with state government ministers. Bjelke-Petersen was unable to recover from the series of damaging findings and after initially resisting a party vote that replaced him as leader, resigned from politics on 1 December 1987. Two of his state ministers, as well as the police commissioner Bjelke-Petersen had appointed and later knighted, were jailed for corruption offences and in 1991 Bjelke-Petersen, too, was tried for perjury over his evidence to the royal commission; the jury failed to reach a verdict and Bjelke-Petersen was deemed too old to face a second trial.Read more...
The January 13, 1911 was a Friday under the star sign of ♑. It was the 12 day of the year. President of the United States was William Howard Taft.
If you were born on this day, you are 110 years old. Your last birthday was on the Wednesday, January 13, 2021, 12 days ago. Your next birthday is on Thursday, January 13, 2022, in 352 days. You have lived for 40,190 days, or about 964,561 hours, or about 57,873,674 minutes, or about ∞ seconds.
Date: 14 January 1911