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The Forum > Article Comments > The politics of pettiness > Comments

The politics of pettiness : Comments

By Bruce Haigh, published 26/6/2009

The Government is paralysed in the face of significant challenges: it is populist, gutless and narcissistic.

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The ‘Utegate’ affair is definitely pretty childish, and very boring.

However, Bruce again shoots himself in the foot by accusing the Government of being “populist, gutless and narcissistic”, then saying that they should be “grappling with climate change”.

Nothing could be more gutless and populist than the Government’s hideously expensive plan to ‘grapple’ with climate change just because they want to be seen to be doing ‘something’.

It is populist because ignorant, unthinking people have been scared into demanding that the government ‘save’ them from climate-change (a totally natural and unchangeable event) and the Government will do anything to get re-elected.

It is gutless, because a brave government with Australia’s best interests in mind would do the right thing and do nothing about natural climate change. This would bring stronger political rewards in the long run, because time will show that the climate will not be altered by human intervention.

So, Bruce likes ‘populism’ when it is something he approves of, but not when it is something he disapproves of. Narcissism doesn’t count; all politicians are up themselves
Posted by Leigh, Friday, 26 June 2009 11:05:02 AM
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I am so pleased Leigh to find someone else found the ute-gate nonsense boring and devised by spin doctors to deflect from real issues. I also agree the climate change issue is not going to deflect from the really grass roots issues of this country like infrastructure and managing water resources. They have to stop the pettiness and point scoring and get on with running the country.

The issue of over government might be another area to look at. Cut the number of politicians and their numerous departments and support people in each state across the country so we have laws and rules that apply country wide, not state by state.. As it is there are departments in each state running a different agenda; the RTA, schooling and education standards, National Parks and Wild Life and myriad other departments to mention just a few. It has to change we cannot maintain the number of politicians presently in this country. I suppose I am advocating eliminating state government.
Posted by RaeBee, Friday, 26 June 2009 3:28:02 PM
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Bruce is exactly right in what he says about diverging from the politics of populism to address issues such as that of climate change. The very reason that a populist government is ineffective is not that it does what is supported by the majority. It is that it does only what is supported by the majority, and for the simple reason that it is supported by the majority. There is sound scientific support behind climate change, and there are clear reasons why we should act now.

By Leigh's line of reasoning, anything supported by the majority is bad. Instead of arguing about the merits of climate change, argue on what Bruce was actually trying to get across. He used climate change as an example of a more important issue (even if you won't concede this) that parliament and politicians should be addressing.
Posted by Tyrone, Friday, 26 June 2009 6:35:09 PM
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The reason the Krudd government has populist policies like AGW is because thats what got it elected.

The real issue becomes the nature of the lies and distortions peddled by the Labourites,to make this difference as stark as possible,and now we will all have to live with the consequenses for the next decades.

Things like

1. Signing Kyoto has no benefit to this country

2. The ETS will convey no benefit to us, more like it will be an econonomic barnacle on our economy. Huge cost for no tangible or measurable benefit. In 100 years time our contribution to any cooling will be 0.004c, but for that we well be subjected to reduced competiveness and job losses

3. Diminished stature and respect for all our scientifc organisations involved in a AGW one sided promotion, like the CSIRO and the BOM.

4. Universities being bought off by the injection of state based ( Labor) funds for specific AGW centres.

5. Inability of the public sector to provide indepedent and fearless advice that is the advantage/benefit of the nation, not just the a political party. The Godwin Grech affair is just a side show in this respect.

6. An appalling inability to undertake proper project evaluation before spending/committing huge sums of money to such badly managed projects as the BER(schools) and NBN( broad band network)

7. The CSIRO getting into bed with the alarmist NGO's like ACF/WWF/Climate Institute, and the shameless promotion of their acolytes like Flannery.

8. Turning a blind eye to the outrageous self interest being promoted by Gore, whose wealth has increased 100 fold


Does it get any dumber
Posted by bigmal, Saturday, 27 June 2009 9:06:21 AM
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Hi Bruce,

An incisive analysis. The recent shabby saga really reflects the pretty low calibre of our political fraternity and their obsession with media exposure.

Both Rudd and Turnbull were damaged in my view. The PM is highly likely to self-destruct eventually and Malcolm will never be able to shed his egoistic 'Lone Ranger' image. Neither seem to recognize the import of the many major issues facing this nation and that the next decade may be worse economically than forecast.

It would be counter-productive for the Liberal Party to persist with their present political leadership who are virtual media puppets because they will not be sufficiently acceptable to the electorate to gain office downstream and easily minced up by the Government attack dogs. Better to change again now albeit that electoral victory in the near term might be a long shot.

The media commentariat are generally saying there are no other suitable candidates to lead the Opposition. If some of them would read blogs more widely instead of pushing their own beliefs, they would find many of the electorate lean toward the mild-mannered Andrew Robb as the best man for the job. He has much more political nous than the present leaders and stays very focused on the major issues affecting the nation.

The people have had a gutful of media-driven politics and we desperately need to get more respect back into parliamentary processes.
Posted by Bushranger 71, Saturday, 27 June 2009 9:21:42 AM
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Heebie-jeebies: 'Do we want our countries politics to be run by the Federal Police?'

NO. But what will it take to clean up the field on the floor?

Trust and Open Transparency in Leadership, and between Administrations has not ever been more important in these economic times. We need them to work together ... And engage with citizens......

And as for Administrations, the last segment of interviews on ABC Breakfast last Friday was a useful start to a debate we have to have.

Be it SBS, the ABC, The Age, News Limited and all the Australian MEDIA ought not be the only ones looking for the scrutiny.... needed for proper observation or monitoring surveillance.

Crime Prevention requires everyone's awareness. [Crime Prevention is a Collective Security, if freedom means Justice for ALL].

Human Ecological Issue: Climate Change, as one example, is but one topic being utterly abused.

As I have been locked out my web site for a number of days .... IPS transfer issues, I think? [I acknowledge here as I will on my website,] Deputy Prime Minister Julia Gillard's statements that back the U.S. Obama's administration call for a freeze on settlement activity by Jewish settlers on the Palestinian West Bank. It is important. The most important statement in modern time.,25197,25697078-2703,00.html

World Peace can not move forward until we address the hardship of those that suffer economic and social hardship because of bad policies and neglect.

The sensitive antic's it takes to "DO THE RIGHT THING" is what is intimidating Good Leaderships, because long-term goals give a few the feeling of uneasiness or the nervousness jitters.

Minister Ms Penny Wong requires some support given the extremes we are facing in the defective side of the debates on ETS etc.

I am grateful to the Business Community for its support for the ETS to be moved toward resolution, ASP. I am looking forward to the possiblities, fully aware of where jobs can tranform or grow.

My greatest concern is the Poor Countries, the refugees and crisis we create if we don't get a move on Climate.
Posted by miacat, Saturday, 27 June 2009 10:42:21 AM
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