My earliest political memory is of sitting on the kitchen lino, playing. Mum was on the phone to the bank, negotiating more time to manage the tension of the family budget with the burden of the 18 per cent interest rate on the family home and the obligations of Dad’s plumbing business. Mum negotiated because Dad worked seven days a week, as well as doing the council bin run at dawn. Mum squeezed in shifts as a retail assistant at a day-night chemist. I would’ve been about six.