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"...public opinion deserves to be respected as well as despised" G.W.F. Hegel, 'Philosophy of Right'

Here we go again « Previous | |Next »
February 18, 2013

Here we go again. More speculation from the Canberra Press Gallery and commentariat about a Rudd leadership challenge that is reinforced by bad poll numbers for federal Labor. This is the world of the Canberra Press Gallery. It loves all that internal infighting, leaking, and rumors as it reinforces its chaos narrative.

RoweDRudd.jpg David Rowe

The narrative favoured by the Canberra Press Gallery is destabilization. Rudd is coming back. The future of a ham-fisted Swan is in doubt. Every bit of minutiae is interpreted within this narrative. It provides the necessary fodder for the chatter on the various opinion and chat shows on television. It's kinda like the swinger's guide to politic

What we have here is an example of the symptoms of the crisis being treated as the "illness" itself. The poll swings are a playing out of a deeper crisis for social democracy. So what is the illness?

Tad Tietze summaries his analysis of social democracy and says that:

the dimensions of Labor's crisis include the erosion and splintering of its "rusted on" vote, the decay of its party organisation, the dramatic decline in the organised social weight of its base in the unions, the ossification of its factional structures with an emptying out of the social interests they reflected, and the gradual evaporation of the party's raison d'ĂȘtre - the representation of a class interest within the political system.

With the embrace of neo-liberalism and technocratic managerialism social democratic parties, including Australian Labor, increasingly moved to the Right on a series of social issue and increasingly embraced social conservatism. Consequently, the substantive policy differences between the major parties have shrunk.

The result is a hollowing out of the Australian Labor Party. Here's one argument for this position from Christine Milne:

This is her National Press Club Address of 2013---'Australian Democracy at the Crossroads.' She has the mining industry in her sights. They have captured both major political parties.

| Posted by Gary Sauer-Thompson at 10:19 AM | | Comments (8)
Comments

Comments

Labor have problems then.

Nan,
I think news has problems if they need to drag this nonsense out again.

The interesting challenge will be between Abbott and Turnbull. With a side order of Hockey appealing to enough disgruntled Labor voters to give his choice value.

Dunno bout Swansong. He still reminds me of an early version of J.H and I can remember thinking he was gone years ago and look how that turned out. Swan would be the type to be leader in opposition.

I suspect Kevin would love to come back and misses no opportunity to increase his chances, but I think a change now is very unlikely. Too many hard men have publicly declared against him.

Personally I would still like to see a split in the ALP with Rudd leading a non-union faction into an alliance with the Greens and other progressives. A bad enough election loss might trigger it. Yes it will mean a few years of Coalition dominance but that will be the price for long-term reform of our political institutions. A Labor Party run by careerist union hacks like Paul Howes and faction bosses like the NSW Sussex St mob is just not a sustainable proposition in the long-term.

Hockey has been conniving for leadership of the Liberal Party for at least 2 years.
Turnbull has never stopped in trying to regain leadership since he lost it years ago.
Factionalism and stife within the ranks of the Liberals is epidemic and, although the media has put a lid on it as much as they can, has been transparent and obvious.
If you were an 'objective and balanced' journo interested in backstabbing gossip then the Liberals would be the obvious fellas to sidle up to in the bar and ask a few soft questions.
The answers probably wouldn't get published tho'.

Ken
They will need 2 members after the next election to cause a split. They might just make it.

The core problem is Rudd's ambition and the NSW Right's corruption ---not Gillard and Swan

Not quite--Swan and Gillard promised black and blue to deliver a budget surplus when it was highly unlikely to be achieved and not economically advisable.

The Canberra Media Gallery insist a Rudd challenge to the Gillard prime ministership is all but inevitable. It seems that this, and the polls, is all they can write about.