Friday, December 15, 2006

Australia Has Its Very Own Tony Blair

The Australian Labor Party has a new leader, Kevin Rudd. I imagine his predecessor but 56 Bob Hawke will have had quite a turn when he heard Rudd say this...

"It's critical that when we say to the Australian people that we want to construct an alternative vision for Australia, that they know the values for which we stand. Socialism isn't one of them. Any political party has to be absolutely confident in the objectives for which they stand. I am not a socialist. I have never been a socialist and I never will be a socialist."

For more click HERE.

11 comments:

houndtang said...

I don't think Bob Hawke was particularly left-wing either, a populist not a socialist. The Australian Labour party hasn't been really socialist since about 1949 when Ben Chifley tried to nationalise the banks.

no longer anonymous said...

He may not be a socialist but he's probably still a statist. But then most major political parties are nowadays. People won't vote for looking after themselves, that would be far too much hard work.

Anonymous said...

I expect Rudd will be the end of Australia then?.He will give Victoria more powers, but let Vicyorian MP's vote on NSW affairs,let's call it the Albury-Wadonga question.

Odessa Calling said...

Strewth mate, your getting into hot water there anonymous !

Anonymous said...

Shame DC. wasn't as honest: I'menot a Tory, have never been a Tory, will never be a Tory.

Luke Akehurst said...

Iain - Bob Hawke was Australia's Tony Blair - winning a string of elections by capturing the centre ground and embracing market reforms.

Schoolboy-Error said...

(Warning)! Blair changing the perceived question again!

During the last election campaign,Blairs strategy response to the 'LIAR' allegation over Iraq (ie he knew the intelligence was wrong/manipulated it) was to change the perceived question in the public's mind.-'I made the difficult decision to go to war in Iraq and I stand by it.'

The media didn't exclaim 'WHAT!?' and neither,to my recollection,did the Conservatives.

Now we have the same situation regarding cash for peerages.-'I recommended people for party peerages as other leaders are entitled to do.' If the media don't point out the evasion of the substantive question (and they didn't in the case of Iraq) then IMO the public (who believe they have an unbiased and crusading for truth media) will perceive the question/substantive issue to have changed and the criminal Blair and Labour's spin apparatus will again have triumphed.

2br02b said...

Australia didn't needto invent their own TB. They could have had our one just by asking.

And so he wouldn't get lost on his way there, he could take our ex-pat Australian Health Commissar-es Hewitt with him as guide and mentor.

Please.

Anonymous said...

Hmm...very interesting, although it would be useful to understand his views on the famously tough policy on immigration in Australia to know if he is a real 'heir to Blair'.

Is anyone else as worried as I am that Blair will end up working for the EU or the UN ? Or possibly both ?

He has said he wouldn't, but then he also said he would be 'purer than pure'...

Anonymous said...

I did think that Blair had his eye on Europe believing the constitution would be ratified.I've always believed he is actually psychologically flawed and that the media manipulators behind Labour/the left and he were made for each other.Unless there's a charge proven against him I'm afraid his charisma could yet see him resurface in an important job.

Alexander Drake said...

I've probably missed the boat on this thread, but here goes...

Kevin Rudd is an interesting choice for the ALP leadership. The ALP was convinced that it would lose under Kim Beazley, again, and so rolled him in order to give them hope next year (hence Rudd).

Rudd is less our Blair, though, than our Ming Campbell - a visible, popular foreign affairs spokesman catapulted to the party leadership because the previous party leader, although popular, was revealed as flawed.

It is very early days for Rudd's leadership of course, and it is possible (although unlikely) that John Howard will lose the next election. But if Rudd loses, it will be because he continued to ape Ming Campbell - he was unable to translate 'cred' on foreign affairs into a role that demands focus on domestic matters such as economic management (the party leadership).

Luke Akehurst is of course right about Bob Hawke being Australia's Blair. The ALP forgot Hawke's lessons under Keating though - it forgot about battlers and the economy, and charged off in the direction of the trendy cultural agenda that was fatally wounded with the republican referendum in 1999 and died after John Howard's re-election in 2004. Returning to Hawke's path is Rudd's real challenge.