Whether we’re talking about politics, racehorses or the football, there’s something admirable about tipsters and that’s that they never look back. Ok, they may have had it completely wrong last week and, while most of us would feel a sense of embarrassment about getting something so publicly wrong, there they are fronting up again next week and giving us their predictions about the future with all the confidence of an astrologer.
Of course, we all accept that people tipping sport are likely to get in wrong and nobody would seriously expect that the experts are likely to get it right every time because that would create an enormous problem for betting markets and, after all, aren’t the betting markets the main reason that would hold sporting contests?
And even with political and economic forecasters, it’s only reasonable to understand that even the most expert and knowledgeable commentator may sometimes get things wrong because of changing circumstances. You know the sort of thing:
“I said that interest rates wouldn’t rise in the foreseeable future and the fact that they’re now rising means that we’re no longer in the foreseeable future because I didn’t foresee it.”
“It’s only because the Democrats held on to key seats that prevented the Red Tsunami that I predicted from happening.”
No, the future is uncertain and anyone trying to make a prediction will risk the wrath of the gods… Or maybe not! Who can tell?
However, lately I’ve started to wonder how certain people can be so dogmatic about their views without even once pausing to say, “Of course, I have been wrong in the past, so maybe you should be taking everything I say with a grain of salt!” At the very least, perhaps they should take the time to explain to people how their journey has taken them from a point somewhere on the road to Damascus where they were blinded by God to the point where they’re a complete atheist.
Take for example, Warren Mundine who was once president of the Labor Party, and as recently as 2012 expressed an interest in being a Labor senator. However, when Bob Carr got the gig instead, Mundine did an interview where he said that while he’d supported the Hawke/Keating Labor Party, the current one had fallen behind the Liberal Party in selecting Indigenous candidates. Mind you, that doesn’t extend to the Indigenous Voice to Parliament because you don’t need to select more than one Indigenous candidate named Mundine for him to stick with the party.
Anyway, at least it’s all clear about what changed his mind and why he’s gone from Labor President to someone who Retweets things from the Murdoch media.
Mark Latham, on the other hand, is a bit of a mystery. From being the Labor leader who referred to the Coalition as “a conga-line of suck-holes” for their support of the USA, he’s become someone who tweets photos of himself having dinner with his leader, Pauline Hanson.
- In 2002, Latham said: “I’m a hater. Part of the tribalness of politics is to really dislike the other side with intensity. And the more I see of them the more I hate them. I hate their negativity. I hate their narrowness. I hate the way, for instance, John Howard tries to appeal to suburban values when I know that he hasn’t got any real answers to the problems and challenges we face.”
- Latham left politics and wrote a book saying how terrible political life in Australia is.
- He returned to politics, joining the Liberal Democrats.
- He left the Liberal Democrats and joined One Nation.
- He hosted a program on Sky called “The Outsiders”, presumably as an attempt to gain sympathy because he’s not an insider.
- He was sacked from the program because he was too much of an outsider.
- He’s a firm believer in free speech and believes that all those complaining about being oppressed should just shut up and listen.
But in all this, he’s never explained what changed his mind from disliking “the other side with intensity” to disliking just about everybody and everything that isn’t Mark Latham.
Or perhaps that was always the case.
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