A week is a long time in politics and no one can be unaware that over the last few days the new again Dear Leader has had some rather mixed blessings , in the first instance he has made that rather audacious agreement with PNG that has been largely lauded as being something that might work. However we have also had the riot and extensive damage of the facility on Nauru which has caused about 60 million bucks worth of damage, with the sort of bad press that Labor has received for years on the “asylum seeker issue the latter does very much take the shine off the former which is starting to show a few cracks anyway as PNG now insists that it will only resettle those who are formally accepted as refugees:
PNG made it clear over the weekend that it was willing to resettle asylum-seekers who were given refugee status but would not do so for those who fail that test, keeping them in detention if no other countries agreed to accept them. The approach could breach the capacity of the Manus Island detention centre within weeks given the current rate of boat arrivals if Labor’s plan does not quickly curtail the people-smugglers’ trade.
So despite some indication that the Rudd scheme may be an effective deterrent its success is far from being a done deal. That said we should not EVER forget that it was Rudd himself who created the problem in the first place with is ill fated decision to change from the successful Howard model in 2008. Some how I don’t think that Rudd’s culpability will be as easily forgotten as Labor hopes.
The changes to the way that leadership of the parliamentary party is decided looks likely to be waved through the caucus as well which has to count as a win for the new again Dear Leader but I personally can’t see what has been proposed being a long term benefit to the party. While it may well make it harder to achieve a coup while the party is in government it also means that the party will be less able to change its leader in the face of incompetence or leadership failure which means that someone as bad as Gillard will be virtually non removable apart from electoral defeat or being encouraged to resign “for the good of the party”. Like a lot of “progressive” ideas it sounds good in principle but I can’t help thinking that a rule change like this one could end up doing more harm than good .
which brings us around to the reason for all of the frenetic efforts from the new again Dear Leader, namely the desire to be in the best possible position to call the election. The latest scuttle-butt suggests August 31 barely a fortnight sooner than Gillard’s mooted September 13 but light years away from her utterly hopeless position:
Thus we find that Labor, instead of giving us the needed concrete changes prior to the election offer us three illusions. Firstly that they have changed the Carbon tax when they can not get their changes through the parliament. Secondly they are set to make the leadership more difficult to change which has to mean that a bad leader can endure well past their use-by date and finally they are giving the us the illusion that they have found a s9olution to the boats with the less than rock solid deal with PNG.
As I see it the honeymoon is all but over for Rudd and that things can only get worse from here on in because already the contrast between the new again Dear leader and his predecessor are fading fast. Personal popularity of its Dear leader won’t save Labor from the consequences of its misrule over the last six years and while they may loose fewer seats than they would have under Gillard I still can’t see them winning the election either.