March 31, 2012
In The Long Goodbye: Explaining Gillard’s Collapse in The Monthly Robert Manne argues that the strange and rather sudden collapse of the Gillard Labor government is grounded in a series of mistakes and miscalculations, beginning with Rudd in 2008, spiralling out of control in 2010, but only becoming irreversible and lethal with Gillard around the middle of 2011:
Federal Labor's woes rest on a string of particular, mostly avoidable, tightly interconnected, strategic blunders. As a consequence of these blunders, Tony Abbott now seems certain to be prime minister before the end of 2013
The grave structural weaknesses within the contemporary federal Labor Party and the deep factors threatening the future of all parties within the social-democratic tradition are not responsible for the federal Labor government’s present discontents.
There's nothing about the way that focus group research, polling, messaging and spin has colonized politics.