These are the results I did today on a quiz designed to determine which side I am on so far as politics in the United States are concerned. My results were not that much of a surprise to me, although perhaps more extreme than I would have expected. Anyway, here they are:
Constitution Party 91%
Green Party 1%
Feel free to try it yourself at I Side With . . . . But I mention it only as a preamble to my thoughts post-Queensland.
Tony Abbott is the rawest rookie ever to lead a major political party in Australia. There is something so off about his approach to the use of power to achieve political ends that it is positively maddening. Did he really enter politics so that he could choose the winner of Australian Literary Awards and bring knighthoods back. Prince Phillip is a disaster of such stupidity that I am astounded that it had even crossed his mind, never mind that he actually decided to surprise everyone, including his own party. He undoubtedly made the fatal difference in Queensland which endlessly depresses me. It is very possible that this was the fatal mistake and he will end up being assassinated in the rotunda, or however these things are now done amongst the Libs in Canberra. Yet what truly irritates me is that there is no one else I would prefer so far as policy goes. He may no longer be capable of winning the coming election, and if so he will therefore have to go. But no one amongst the leadership group represents the policy matrix I prefer.
I think the junking of his Paid Maternity Leave scheme means either he has seen the light, or more likely, he has had a midnight visit with baseball bats to encourage him “to consult” more closely with the rest. Rudd could never be brought round, but Tony might just make the adjustment, and he has a year or so to get there (or perhaps about three months). The thing about Rudd, however, was that while his colleagues hated him, the country found him quirky but OK. With Abbott, it’s something like the reverse.
The nature of this country is at a crossroads. A Shorten-Plibersek Government would add to the bile, and with the 47% now a universal and climbing, this could be the last Coalition Government for a very long time. And as it happens, today I was down on Acland Street and who should be sitting at the cafe next door but Bill Shorten himself along with his family. What was also quite striking, and why this is still the country it is, was that no one invaded his privacy by coming up to speak to him, nor did there seem to be any security presence anywhere around. And then, half an hour later, I came across him again, at the bookshop looking through a book. My wife thinks it was just a cynical meet-the-people exhibition. I just think he was out to have a quiet Sunday afternoon in just the same way I was having myself.
There is so much going for this country, I just don’t want to see it ruined.