Tuesday, July 3, 2007

It's Overtime for a change

This blog is about Australian politics and the desperate need for a change of government in the national election later this year. Its bias and its intentions are clear. If you are living in Australia and have not been angered by the opportunist and bullying tactics of John Howard's government in its recent response to problems facing indigenous communities, this forum is probably not for you.

With a strong economy the Liberal/National coalition politicians can't understand why they are behind in the opinion polls. I'm not interested in telling them. However, it is vital that all of us who want a change remind ourselves why they are on the nose with the electors at the moment. and that we voice our views loudly and not just leave it up to the professional politicians and commentators.

The smell of complacency has been strong in recent months. Kevin Rudd seems a victim of his own popularity. If we are going to jettison Howard's cynical crew we must face the uphill battle for Labor this year. So back to basics! Why do we want to see Howard's defeat?

  • The Iraq War! Why doesn't he get it? When he visited Vietnam recently Howard said he hadn't changed his views on the Vietnam war. Not one journalist asked him which part he thought they got right. The same question needs to be asked about Iraq. Is it just cold-blooded stubbornness? Do our troops have to stay there indefinitely because Bush, Blair and Howard made such a mess of the country that they can't organise a retreat or a settlement.
  • Basic rights of Australians have become a joke and our government's treatment of refugees is beneath contempt.
  • Work Choices: more work with less choice.
  • Warming to global climate change: from denial to nuclear power in one easy sleight of hand. Nuclear is not a synonym for alternative or renewable. Like its policies for indigenous communities it is too little, too late.
  • Lies, damned lies and statistics: Howard did not say he would keep interest rates at record lows. He let the ads do it for him and cunningly chose his words so he could worm out of it later. The polls suggest that the worm might have met the skeptical edge of public scrutiny. It is also time we had a real debate about what is happening in the economy.
We have had 11 years of mediocre, backward-looking government. Those of us from old Labor who believed that governments can make a difference to people's lives, think it's time again.

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