Posted by: jkirkby8712 | February 22, 2012

Wednesday, 22nd February 2012 – an alternative PM, as politics dominates the headlines, again!!

The following paragraphs,  I put on Face Book today, not with any aim of stirring up controversy amongst my Labor voting friends [which most of my Australian ‘friends’ seem to be], but simply because, upon reading the whole article, whilst sitting over a coffee at Sunbury Square this afternoon, I liked what I was reading, and as a semi- rural/regional born Australian, regardless of which side of politics I was sitting on, felt that I could be reasonable comfortable living under the person suggested,  as an alternative Prime Minister, to the current and previous occupants!  This was how I put my little piece!!

Introductory bit:  Most of us are becoming a little tired of the ongoing ‘leadership saga’ between Ms Gillard and Mr Rudd, regardless of whether it is for real, or as much media driven as anything else, and I’m sure Labor supporters must be feeling a touch frustrated and distressed. I can see an alternative to them both, who would seem to offer a more secure future if Labor wants to stay in power. The points that follow come from an article in today’s Weekly Times – yes, there’s a bit of regional bias evident in the choice, but even I would be happy to live in an Australia with this man as a ‘Labor’ PM!!! I wonder what Labor supporters think?

Follow – up – selected sentences from article in the Opinion pages of today’s ‘Weekly Times’  rural newspaper, headed – ‘Best man for the land’ –  He is like, trusted and understands regional Australia –   ‘There is another alternative – and he’d be great for regional Australia. This man has been Primary Industries Minister, Trade Minister and Education and Employment Minister – in fact he’s been a senior minister under four PMs. He’s been opposition leader and is now looking statesman-like while Rudd and Gillard carry on like schoolchildren fighting over a lolly. In fact, if you lined up the politicians on both sides, this man is probably the individual country Australia would most like to have in charge. He doesn’t pontificate with ridiculous language like Rudd did and, unlike Gillard, he’s never stabbed anyone in the back. He’s a safe pair of hands. He’s liked, known and trusted by voters and carries none of the baggage of Rudd or Gillard. And he understands regional Australia and its economies better than any leadership option on either side of politics – he also has degrees in economics and law. Because he does the hard work; he’s across the policy detail, even of topics which arguably aren’t his main game. Who actually heads out to the regions to sell the Government’s unpopular climate change action in the areas that are most hostile? He doesn’t duck for cover; he was known for engaging with farmers when he was Primary Industries Minister. He rightly says the current leadership “nonsense” is sucking the oxygen from Labor’s messages. Few can manage a stint as leader and keep their friends, but he did. Australia needs a respected, hardworking PM who isn’t ego-driven and is above petty Labor Party spats and vendettas. And regional Australia needs a PM who is aware the world doesn’t end at the city limits……………..’ He ‘deserves’ another chance, in my non-Labor view – Simon Crean!!

I did get a response or two!!  There was of course the usual ‘cynical’ response that one comes to expect as a certainty from one or two friends in particular such as: ‘Written, spoken and authorised by Simon Crean for the ALP, Canberra’, but I was hoping to receive something of a more serious response, to a question which is at present in many ways, tearing the politics of our government apart. In actual fact, the article to which all this refers to was written by respected Weekly Times national affairs reporter, Leslie White.

The drama intensifies. From the other side of the world, whilst on a trip as Foreign Minister, Kevin Rudd has acted before ‘someone’ axed him – he announced at a Press Conference in the USA a few hours ago, of his intention to resign as Foreign Minister, and move to the ‘back bench’.  Tony Abbott was quick to ‘put in the boot’ with this statement  –

‘Kevin Rudd has confirmed two things – that the faceless men are   running the Labor Party and that the instability at the top of this government   is damaging our country.  Kevin Rudd’s   statement tonight confirms that this government is unworthy to continue in   office. Only the Coalition can provide the strong and stable government that   will address the issues facing our country and restore hope, reward and   opportunity for all Australians’.

At this stage on the Face Book site, I added that ‘My   post must have had a premonition of something ‘big’ on the horizon – he’s a   very clever man, Kevin Rudd, calling a Press Conference at 1.30am, USA time,   with his announcement that would get into Australia’s evening news   bulletins!! I could be crude and say ‘has the shit now hit the fan?’, but I   won’t, lol’  My Irish friend noted that   ‘I agree….but he won’t get the gig…cos he is Old style Labor and the   “modern Do gooders” in the Party do not like him……!!  To which I responded  –  No,   I don’t think he will either, but a loss is unlikely to end the uncertainty   and future speculation faced by a ‘shakey’ PM. I’ll stick with my suggestion   lol – someone put Simon Crean up, if we must continue with Labor in power,   lol!!!

It’s interesting that since November 2007, when Labor   came to power after 11 years of John Howard’s government, that we seemed to   have lurched from one political crisis to another  – the Liberals got the ball rolling with   three changes of leadership in the first 12 months or so, and since then,   Labor has never stopped – stumbling into one hole after another!!  For those of us who like to watch politics   in action, it’s being like a roller coaster novel, and if you have or had   been reading my blog entries over the past three years or so, you have been   kept right up to date with it all!!    Strangely, when I began to write today’s entry, there were a number of   other subjects I wanted to get on to, and then politics got in the way,   again!!  I liked this paragraph from   the Weekly Times article  –  “But Rudd would have plenty of problems if   he again became PM and paid minimal attention to rural Australia – waffling   on about sucking on sauce bottles wins no credibility in the country’.

  •   The reference above to ‘sitting in Sunbury Square’   having a coffee – that came about because about mid-afternoon, I decided to   go into town, buy the paper, and over a drink, sit and read, in a public   place, to be honest, hoping that someone I knew might come along, and stop   for a chat.  No-one did actually,   although I realised later that son, Adam, was probably over in Bakers Delight   still working – a bit too late for him, but I thought I noticed his [my] car   out in the car-park, a bit earlier.  I   still had my chat anyway – met one of the ladies from the church in the   supermarket, same person, twice within a week!
  •   Meanwhile, back to the big news of the day, which   is summarised in the following report from the Channel Nine news-staff.

Prime Minister Julia Gillard is planning to   call a leadership spill following the resignation of former foreign minister   Kevin Rudd today.  Mr Rudd announced   that he was quitting during a late-night press conference in Washington. He said resigning was the “only   honourable course of action” after losing the confidence of Prime   Minister Julia Gillard amid continued speculation about a leadership spill. “The simple truth is that I   cannot continue to serve as foreign minister if I do not have the Prime   Minister’s support,” he said. “I   am sad because I love this job.”      In a response statement tonight   Ms Gillard described Mr Rudd as “a strong and effective advocate for   Australia’s interests overseas”.   “During his period of service as Foreign Minister there were many   achievements,” she said.  “He strongly pursued Australia’s   interests in the world.” “I   am disappointed that the concerns Mr Rudd has publicly expressed this evening   were never personally raised with me, nor did he contact me to discuss his   resignation prior to his decision. “I   plan to hold a press conference tomorrow to make a further statement.” It’s understood Ms Gillard plans to   announce at the press conference that a leadership spill will take place on   Monday.  During his press conference, Mr Rudd   said resigning was the “only honourable course of action” and added   that he is doing so with a “genuinely heavy heart”.  Nine   News political editor Laurie Oakes said Mr Rudd jumped before he was pushed,   claiming Ms Gillard had planned to sack him before parliament resumed on   Monday.  The former PM cited attacks from   frontbencher Simon Crean and other politicians as a sign of his lack of   support from Gillard.  “Mr Crean and a number of other   faceless men have publicly attacked my integrity and my fitness and to serve   in government,” he said. “When   challenged today on these attacks, Ms Gillard chose not to repudiate them. “I can only conclude that she   shares these views.” In   his resignation as foreign minister, Mr Rudd also pledged not to challenge Ms   Gillard for the leadership. “There   is no way that I will ever be party to a stealth attack on a sitting prime   minister elected by the people,” he said. “We all know what happened then was wrong, and it should   never happen again. “I   regard this whole affair as little better than a soap opera, and I won’t be   part of it.”  The former prime minister said the   ongoing leadership saga was also damaging the business community and the   re-election campaign of Queensland Premier Anna Bligh.  Mr Rudd will return to   Brisbane on Friday and will make a full statement on his future before   parliament resumes on Monday. “Effing   proud of you, Dad,” his daughter Jessica tweeted afterwards. His duties in Washington DC will   now be carried out by US ambassador Kim Beazley, the man he ousted as   Opposition Leader in 2007.

Anyway,   away from the political soapbox, to a bit of political lightheartedness   tonight – great little show on ABC2 ‘Kitchen Cabinet’, with  Annabelle Crab cooking dinner with   Christopher Pine [current Liberal Opposition Manager of Business] and Amanda Vanstone  – and her dog – [former tough Minister in   the Howard Liberal Government, Amanda, not the dog]  –   a few laughs in a pleasant environment, a   nice change from the soapbox drama of other events!!






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