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With all the luck in the world, the Prime Minister progresses but fails to move forward

If I had time I would sit down, do a bit of research and document how more often than not events seem to fall rightly or wrongly into place to favour the Liberal Party or what is now the Conservative Party waiting for another name.

On this occasion, a virus slipped in to help a down and out government on the ropes and just about to enter a recession. After almost three pathetic and corrupt governance terms, they are looking to take a fourth, and if you believe all the Albanese knockers, he hasn’t the charisma to beat Scott Morrison. Sorry, but we have heard it all before.

Which of these leaders had charisma?

John Howard.

Julia Gillard.

John Hewson.

Bob Hawke.

Gough Whitlam.

Bill Shorten.

Kim Beasley.

Kevin Rudd.

Malcolm Fraser.

Anthony Albanese.

Mark Latham.

Scott Morrison.

Who had the least, yet in terms of longevity was the most successful? In my view, John Howard was the least charismatic yet the most (in terms of longevity), successful. It is often the case that in polling, the popularity of a leader doesn’t always correspond with the party they might vote for.

People get carried away with popularity when as we get closer to the election the question of; “Who would you vote for?” is more important than; “Who would make the better Prime Minister?”.

In the last week or so we have witnessed a bombardment of attacks; call it character assassinations if you like, against Anthony Albanese that amount to nothing more than people’s feelings and have no basis otherwise. Take Troy Bramston’s article in The Australian 2 February 2021. It can only be described as a list of unsubstantiated claims that are nothing more than grubby attempts at character assassination.

In polls such as Newspoll, one can take little from them other than how people are feeling at the time. On the question of who is the more popular, Morrison must come out on top. He is well known, full of crap and has taken over the media, in the fullness of its reach. I mean, COVID-19 has by necessity demanded that the Prime Minister be proactive in leadership and feeding information to the press and the public. That means exposure. Its value in terms of public perception cannot be measured, but I sure wouldn’t like to be paying for it.

For his part, Albanese has and still is an example of how bipartisanship politics in the face of a national crisis should work. He has been firm but fair in all respects without any acclaim.

It is often difficult for an opposition leader to get a sentence on the national nightly news let alone during a pandemic. On top of that, he is fighting the Murdoch media empire’s might.

Yet despite all this people demand that he be more assertive. That he should be in campaign mode before the campaign has even begun.

Nobody in the party is more aware of the leadership rumblings within than Albanese. This was the entire point of last Thursday’s reshuffle.

Albanese has come up with a more purpose-fit alternative ministry. One that in my view that person for person is much better than the incumbents. Take a look at the frontbench and see if you agree.

No doubt many Labor MPs ask themselves if their current leader can beat Scott Morrison in an election this year. Despite the 50/50 Newspoll result, The Australian has written Albo off as yesterday’s hero to be replaced in a matter of days. If the 50/50 remains for three consecutive polls, you can say there is a trend. What a load of piffle it is. For those who look for a more in-depth analysis, I would suggest in part that people may have woken up as they did in the US to the enormous falsities that they were being told.

When a political party deliberately withholds information, the voter needs to make an informed, balanced and reasoned assessment of how it is governed. When it lies over a long period, disregards science and tells the people that everything is fake except what they tell them, they eventually react.

Labor MPs might continue to ask themselves and one another whether Albanese has what it takes to beat Morrison, but they should give him a chance. Like President Biden, he can call bullshit out for what it is and then calmly explain the truth of things. Why people need a raving voice of reply to counter everything a leader says is beyond me.

Biden has set an example that others should take notice of; “Let your words speak their purpose.” Trump’s words or lies then became exposed for what they were.

Frankly, I am sick of people proposing a leader’s dismissal before the fight has even begun. Give the bloke a go.

Joe Biden’s victory should be seen as a fillip for international action against the extremities of the right.

Now a few words about the Albo’s shadow cabinet.

Bowen is an excellent choice for when, as it must, the climate debate eventually becomes one of economics. He is a proven performer and debater of a wide range of policy.

Labor desperately wants the election to be a post-pandemic one that outlines a future Australia. In the reshuffle, Richard Marles has a super portfolio that narrates our future. No one better than the philosophical Marles to do that.

Burke stays in Industrial Relations as was his want with Chalmers still in the Treasury, leaving Stephen Jones to prosecute Superannuation. Plibersek loses her portfolio’s skills component to Marles, which is a bit of a slap on the wrist to a possible challenger.

Victorian left-winger Brendan O’Connor was handed the shadow defence portfolio. Both O’Connor and Albanese are in the same faction but have been indifferent corners in a few debates.

This reshuffle reflects the battle that lays ahead. In my view, the government is very vulnerable on many fronts, and the opposition has a team that can take it up to the government.

They need to be a group of enthusiastic men and women who believe that winning is a result of good leadership, supporting the leader and tackling your opponent with words that have the ring of truth about them.

The world is sick of leaders like Trump and Morrison. It’s time for a change.

My thought for the day

One of the oddities of political polling is trying to understand how 50% of the voting public would willingly return a party that has governed so abysmally.

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14 comments

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  1. Andy Salway

    It should be blatantly obvious by now that the abysmal federal administration, led by a Pentecostal spin-merchant, is unfit to govern. There is ample evidence to substantiate this. They have to go!

  2. New England Cocky

    The question few Australian voters ask is ”Who is benefiting from the present abysmal representation of the best interests of Australian voters?”

    1) Self serving politicians who have NOT taken any cut in remuneratio0n yet only sat for 20 days in 2020;
    .
    2) Corporate executives who paid themselves huge bonuses allegedly out of JobKeeper payments;
    .
    3) Foreign owned multinational corporations many of which do NOT pay any taxation in Australia.

    Now ask \”’Why do Australian voters support neoLiarbral policies that DO NJOT serve their own best interests?”

  3. Peter Ayre

    John you are correct as usual, I really can’t understand why people can’t see what’s going on. The corruption alone is not even being hidden anymore, is our population really that stupid?

  4. Kronomex

    By hook or by crook and lies and slander and mud slinging and every other dirty trick in the LNP/Murdoch playbook, Saint Scotty of the Marketing will use them all to keep himself in power.

    I can almost picture him raising Death taxes, franking rebate and Mediscare from the grave in desperation to as the election looms.

  5. Henry Rodrigues

    As long as the voters are ‘bedazzled’ by spin and rhetoric, and subtle and sometimes overt propaganda by the media, which seems to have cast a spell on the imagination of those not knowledgeable enough, and the over emphasis of the fear of Labor as economic managers, plus the basic innate greed of those who view any change in taxation as being harmful to them, while in the next breath demanding better health and education. The rich and the ones on company lurks and perks are laughing, because they don’t have to pay the price of the inequalities that the rest are subject to. And Scummo with Rupert are laughing, all the way to the Lodge and beyond

  6. wam

    How ‘ard is it, lord, to understand that 50% of voters think you are lying about the government? ‘Albanese has what it takes to beat Morrison’ is not the question, lord. you could have asked what has albo DONE to defeat morrison and his bunch of duds? How’ ard is it for labor to understand that no matter how unpopular Albo is a spill would be worse?
    I disagree with your willingly’ thought, lord, people here have said that they will give the loonies their vote ‘reluctantly’ and labor voters have voted against their best interests through fear real and imaginary. Albo must do something to show enough Australian voters that people like you, lord, are giving an honest assessment of this government. To my mind that means giving the government curry on commercial TV not on the abc Did you hear the leader of the third party telling us that a safety campaign to go with the roads they have built will generate 10000 jobs(a jolly off the top of the head figure remember the 10000 jobs for adani threatened by boobby?) Spot on NEC Not only no cuts but many payrises all hidden from public view thanks to a slimy lawyer labor prime minister. How these about chasing hundreds of thousands for robodebt of peanuts but letting wage support rorts by employers go free?

  7. Phil Pryor

    Until recently, people might interact with family, neighbours, some friends and work colleagues, Now, electronics and devices allow all to interact with the world, immediately. So, the loudmouths, crooks, pests, deviates, thieves, scoundrels, nohopers, coercers, influencers, etc., are as empowered as any “normal” people, who are blasted with brain dissolving advertising, intrusive email and calls, media misinformation. It is a consumer, electronic peasant world for most, and a character devised to confuse and convince is as real and acceptable as a genuine person. Thus a pure bullshit confected invention like a Trump, (formerly on T V), is real and influential. Here, Morrison, a putrid fabrication, seems established and is accepted by the non thinking political “consumer”. Morrison never ever worked at anything honest and real, got inflated as an office bumboy for the liberals, back stabbed into public life as a predatory maggot, failed and slinked away form professional lying in the advertising game, (surely a degrading condemnation) and is a fingered up creation of Merde-Dog the Yanko wanko old political string pulling pervert. But the world is now owned and controlled by big corporations, with incrowd swirls of money, donors, patrons, hangers on, media manipulation, superstition charged rubbish. They are in the saddle, like conquerors, cannot ride properly, but who knows, cares or comprehends? The money is huge, the grabbers and gougers hold most, we the people are a shrinking irrelevancy, the world is abused by badbrained sluts and the establishment does not give a fat rat’s RING, while they corner the money, power, influence, prestige, positions…Democracy remains a good concept.

  8. Ross

    Prime Ministers come and go and most leave little to lament them going. Gough was PM for only a short time yet achieved far more than most that came before or after him.
    Howard was one of the longest serving yet achieved very little except to be remembered as “the lying rodent” and for losing his seat as a sitting Prime Minister.
    The last three PM’s, Liberal Party, have achieved very little and all have a long list of nasty but accurate nick names. Two of the three didn’t last long.
    A betting person may take note of the nick name trend and punt a few readies on a trifecta.

  9. Mr Shevill Mathers

    As usual, a good article, John.
    Morrison makes me think of a person afloat in a lifeboat after the main ship has sunk. Clueless & directionless.

  10. Florence Howarth

    During my life, I have never seen any evidence being popular makes one a good boss or leader. In fact, IMO the opposite is true.

  11. Kaye Lee

    Morrison has done well during the pandemic because he has taken NO responsibility and made NO decisions. Everything is up to the health authorities and the Premiers.

    He can ignore the debt and deficit and all other policy because….pandemic.

    But I don’t think he is going to be able to ignore, or deal with, climate change and energy policy. With the election of Biden, world scrutiny and demand for action is ramping up. They can’t con the international community with “meet and beat in a canter” crap. There is every chance that the EU and other countries who are making significant cuts to emissions will impose “carbon border adjustment charges”. Scotty is in trouble here.

    Federal ICAC is another vulnerability. And keep ’em coming from the Auditor General.

    Increase Newstart and rental assistance. Build more community housing and incentivise the private sector to build affordable housing.

    Commit to the Uluru Statement from the Heart.

    As far as being better economic managers is concerned, Labor got us through the GFC with low unemployment, no recession, and STILL managed loads of groundbreaking legislation like the NBN and the NDIS and so many more.

    Scotty’s got nuffin – oh wait…tax cuts for the wealthy

  12. Kerri

    I just want Albo to oppose and to step further away from the right rather than trying to copy it to win votes.
    And I am sick to death of government by cronyism.
    Albo would do well to highlight a reference to scientists and experts to highlight the faults in Morrison’s unelected mateship governence model.
    ie: Neville Power, and Andrew bloody Forrest.

  13. Michael Taylor

    Isn’t it wonderful (for the LNP) how half of Australia votes for a party that will help the rich because they believe it is good for the poor. 🤷🏻‍♂️

  14. Lawrence Roberts

    Many of the electorate have little interest in politics, they are too busy paying the mortgage, the power bill and feeding the kids. Indeed they view the whole political class as a bunch of self serving scroungers. When it comes to compulsory voting time it all comes down to three word slogans and image. Morrison may well be a third rate marketing man but he does have the gloss that Stinker Murdoch gives him; the backing of TV channels and a war chest vastly superior to the opposition’s.

    When it comes to three word slogans “How good is” triumphs over “on your side”. I pity the poor blighters running the Labor without a U in it, campaign.

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