Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Somebody done somebody wrong...

Labors current leadership speculation is a clear statement of the quality and state of Australian politics across the political divide. Disunity in opposition is problematic for the confused voter; however disunity in government is a parliamentary death wish.
This poses the question “where have all the great political communicators gone?”

Many within the Labor ranks prefer to blame factors other than there own disunity for Labors mistakes.  Labor may have well committed one of the greatest blunders in Australian political history by ousting a serving Prime Minister and installing an unelected Prime Minister that predicated re-election on a lie. This foolish move has festered away in the voting public’s mind and remains a source of great frustration within labors ranks.  It would seem that the core values of democracy and a fair go for all are at odds with the desperate political powerbrokers of Labors right. Constant barrages aimed at a succubus media symptomatic of the problem rather than the cause is nothing more than hollow excuses from a government with great policies and no pitch. This is a simplistic blame a thon, as not since the twenties has the media in Australia been so concentrated, lazy, biased, intrusive, untrustworthy and irrelevant. If lazy biased media are across the vast array of multiplatform communication channels on tap eagerly waiting for the next non- event to happen what do you expect? In an unregulated market where the lines between entertainment, opinion and journalism are convoluted by commentary, ACMA sits like a toothless tiger. Breaching ACMA guidelines is a very profitable calculated financial risk for cashed up media outlets. Waifs of fact threaded together with lies to fuel self-serving or paid opinion make lots of money.  Most Journalists in Australia have forgotten the meaning of the word “reporter” preferring to spin rather than scribe. So what happens when factional camps within a government systematically leak nasty leadership speculation? The media lap it up, add a few innuendos and run like hell with it to press. Who could blame them if it’s a lie the liable bill or ACMA fine is a low percentage of the revenue generated.

A government that cannot manage its own media cohesively cannot govern effectively. Despite an amazing record of achievement with the big picture issues on the table, Labor in general has a fundamental communication problem. There are only a handful of people on the front bench with the necessary communication skills to sell a message.  Overall most current serving politicians of all persuasions are poor communicators effectively stifled by speculative opinionated journalists.
The current culture within Labor for selling and communicating ideas is shambolic and uncoordinated at best. Labor media advisors are an incompetent rabble having managed to make a successful minority government look more like Italy than Australia.

The problem comes down to who has the goods rather than the numbers.
If you take a close look at past Labor leadership choices it is understandable. Kim Beasley was a great communicator. Despite his strong attributes as an orator, academic, visionary and being bred from formidable political stock, he was in the wrong faction from the wrong state. Nothing in that for Sussex street.

Kevin Rudd for all his faults unified the party to a resounding victory returning Labor from the political wilderness. He was at one point the most popular Labor leader of all time, which displays the fickle nature of the media rather than his ability as Prime Minister.
Kevin simply talked too much, sometimes in code with dusty dictionary technical acronyms that said absolutely nothing. In the ensuing battle for the job he negotiated his own cabinet on his own terms bypassing caucus factions.                                                                                      
Prime minister Rudd began to unravel within the first six months as spin replaced substance. Running government from his office without much ministerial council. Super Kev headed for the super fall. Power brokers realized early on that it was his mission to split and eroded the powerbase within the complexities of Labors factional powerbase particularly in New South Wales. The same faction that gave you Mark Lathum (A foul mouthed, ex Liverpool councilor bully boy with the diplomacy of Ivan Milat) killed off Kevin as they did Kim Beasley. Nothing in that for Sussex street. 

Julia Gillard rewarded the faceless men like Mark Arbib with a cabinet position. He who destroyed the New South Wales Labor party as the architects of a popularly elected Prime Ministers demise. Mark Arbib is an incompetent, political operative devoid of credibility with a wake of political destruction behind him. He has little to offer Australia in terms of vision or ability having  churned leaders and factional opponents of greater caliber than he could ever aspire too for his own political gain. He will systematically destroy anyone who threatens his power base. Make no mistake Arbib would steam roll Julia in a heartbeat if his cushy non constituant senate position depended on it. How do I know this? He once tried to have me thrown out of the party for daring to question party democracy.

Julia Gillard is going to get smashed in the next election. She is not electable, too much baggage, spoiled goods and a terrible leader.  She may be the best negotiator in the room but that's of no consequence if she cant sell or pitch great idea's. The best idea's, most of which were "Kevin Vision," are lost in a vapor of polispeak. Despite her political prowess and personal ability, her public perception is shot. One swinging voter described her to me as "a whiney lying lawyer". Apparently she was from the left, right? I'm sorry but a woman from the left living with a hairdresser does not believe in gay marriage?  Like many things Julia, it just dont add up.

As I write this comes the news that Kevin has resigned as forien minister bad news for Australia as he is by far one of the best foreign ministers in Australian political history. It would seem that Julia may be the red weather vein of populous politics flailing in the gail of journalistic and factional opinion. The waiting game of the effect from the flow on of compensation from reforms is as risky as toppling a Prime Minister.  If Kevin rises like Lazarus remains to be seen at the moment its not looking good. One thing I am total in agreement with as a true believer, reform in Labor is as inevitable as climate change.


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