Monday, March 19, 2007

Get a grip

Lateline tonight is reporting that Newspoll tomorrow will show a 2 party preferred vote of 61% to Labor and 39% to the Libs.

A few weeks ago, Kevin Rudd said that he intended "playing with" John Howard's mind.

I reckon that the electorate has decided to get in first. In my opinion, there's no way the current polling results show a real intention to abandon Howard in such a decisive way. They're just toying with him.

Andrew Bolt seemed unusually pessimistic on Insiders this week too. But I did agree with Matt Price's Saturday column that argued that Abbott's "character attack" on Rudd was nothing spectacular as far as these things go. I liked this paragraph (referring to Abbott's atack):

All right, a little nasty (mud level: medium) but Julia Gillard must have been struck with severe temporary amnesia when she ripped into Abbott for sinking to "a new low in Australian politics". Hyperbole, for sure, especially when you remember Gillard's fondness for Mark Latham included qualified admiration for his diaries (mud level: mayday, mayday, everybody's drowwwnninn ...)

I don't find Swan, Gillard and Rudd's media performances of late particularly impressive. In fact, the "tired and arrogant" government message (which was obviously promoted as their message for the week) strikes me as particularly fake. For example, one of the major issues that seems to be working against the government is the perception of its IR laws, but these are clearly a case of a reforming step too far, and not a problem arising from a lack of ideas. The Keating government, on the other hand, really did seem to have hit the a wall as far as policy innovation was concerned.

So, people of Australia, get a grip and stop toying with the PM. Wait for real policy details from Labor, at least.

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