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The Forum > Article Comments > Rudd and the cultural elites > Comments

Rudd and the cultural elites : Comments

By Mark Kelly, published 2/6/2008

Kevin Rudd has powerfully alienated the Australian cultural elite. This was not a smart move politically.

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"[T]he cultural elite are...somehow an important part of the fragile consensual coalition gathered behind Laborís conquest of state power."

Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha! Best. Self. Delusion. Ever.

The cultural elite will NEVER have the guts to advocate throwing out a Labor government. They are therefore completely irrelevant. Its ridiculous to think that Mr Rudd will have lost one single vote because of his reactionary comments on the Henson issue.

Mr Rudd's victory came about because he convinced people who previously voted for Mr Howard that he (Mr Rudd) would better serve their interests. It had nothing to do with people who loathed Mr Howard from the start, and everything to do with those people who changed their minds and supported Labor instead of Liberal. The cultural elite appear to have little or no understanding of these people, and therefore no way to affect politics.

David Jackmanson
http://www.lastsuperpower.net
http://letstakeover.blogspot.com
Posted by David Jackmanson, Monday, 2 June 2008 8:59:54 AM
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Dear Opiners,

I think that the problem with Henson's pictures is that each child is not yet 18, and therefore unable to make an adult's decision over a very private thing, her/his most personal appearance.

Just as Corey Delaney, a 16 y.o., may well regret his actions when he looks for a job in a few years (when his celebrity status is yesterday's news), so too 12 and 13 year olds who pose nude may get teased at school or otherwise wish they had been protected from the consequences of their underage decisions.

Incidentally, whether cultural elites directly affect elections is to me less interesting than whether they are right, a question for the cultural elites both "high-brow" and "low-brow" (eg - the churches, mosques and synagogues who likewise do not necessarily reflect mainstream culture.)
Posted by Tomess, Monday, 2 June 2008 10:17:30 AM
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I agree completely with David Jackmanson, and am rolling in the aisles with laughter at the predicament of the cultural elite. This is the group that started all this by backing that witch Hetty Johnstone, when she attacked Peter Hollingworth in 2001. The elite at the time was reeling from their defeat in the 2001 election, and was full of loathing at Howard at his actions in the Tampa affair. By attacking Hollingworth they thought they could attack Howard and the constitutional monarchy. Tough Luck! Look at what you have reaped! We now have a crazy society where you cannot take photos of school sports events, children at the beach, or any mannner of ordinary events. I fully support Bill Henson and hope that this event may bring us back to common sense. In addition, their attack on Hollingworth has not increased support for the republic, with current polls at record lows in support. And as for changing the flag, another of the elite's obsessions, that seems to have vanished without trace.

As far as the cultural elite is concerned, it is obvious that they are and always have been contemptuous of the opinions of the people.

The only problem is that the people are contemptuous of them, and they are the ones that fill out the ballot papers.

The stupid idiots in the cultural elite have supported the election of a man who is to the right of John Howard, and even more of a populist than he was. Tough Luck! I would expect that in the next budget or two we will see a downgrading of arts funding.
Posted by plerdsus, Monday, 2 June 2008 12:58:25 PM
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Mmmm morality. Photographing pubescent girls might be art but if there are too many photos then that's sleazy and the police might get involved.

The tennis player posing for Playboy is just trailer trash, who wants to be masterbated over all around the world for $500 per nipple?

K Rudd demanding public servants work 70 per week, that is immoral. This is Workchoices by stealth and just reinforces my opinion of Howard-lite. I would expect a Prime Minister put into power through the efforts of Your Rights at Work campaign should set the example by providing decent working conditions in the country that pioneered the 8 hour day.
Posted by billie, Monday, 2 June 2008 1:27:43 PM
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Well said Mark and as with Elizabeth it was a defining statement for me also.
It was a cheap populist stunt. Showed Rudd to be not that bright.
He had already alienated his workforce.He didn't have the courage to change the culpable senior management in the AFP, ASIS, ASIO, ONA, Defence,DFAT,Immigration, Health, Energy, Agriculture and Education.
After Howard we needed leadership and vision. Sadly it appears we have a Howard clone minus the evil intent. But as far as I can see that is only thing Rudd has going for him.
Rudd is out of his depth. So busy and so little done.
From my conversations it is not only the so called cultural elite that walked from his use of the word revolting in the context of trying to define Henson's art.
It's not showing in the polls but a lot of people are now looking at him with different eyes.
He has put himself on notice at a time of mounting problems with energy, food, water and inflation.
Who would have thought Turnbull would look like he might have something going for him after only 6 months and after the dream polls that Rudd has enjoyed.
What does Rudd believe in beside born again christian sludge?
He keeps people waiting outside his door, sometimes for hours, others are on call awaiting the whim of a man who has no interest in the lives of others. Definitely not officer material. He has elevated the role of the AFP in a centralised administrative structure. And he has put offside senior ministers such as Fergusson, Smith, Wong, Albanese, Gillard and Swan.
And what are we to make of Peter Garrett and his Rudd agenda?
The idea of the 2020 Summit should have rung alarm bells, along with the decision to cut CSIRO funding and cap Solar subsidies at a time when he should have been proposing and funding an Australian Alternative Energy Institute.
For me his revolting Henson statement was the straw on the camels back.
Bruce Haigh
Posted by Bruce Haigh, Monday, 2 June 2008 1:37:51 PM
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I'm not a member of any cultural elite, but as someone who voted for Rudd as clearly the lesser of two evils, I'm not so sure now about that assessment. Certainly, I found his philistine comments about Henson's art surprisingly inept and disappointing, while his government is proving to be increasingly so in areas such as the environment and education.

At least the troops are coming home from Iraq, I suppose.
Posted by CJ Morgan, Monday, 2 June 2008 1:44:21 PM
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