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Labor Right

Gillard's Government should be a team made credible

Irrespective of Rudd's failings, and we should not understate his leadership in saving Australians from the demise of the GFC; no leader deserves a factional coup d'etat. The process of leadership replacement where a political party can suddenly replace a Prime Minister or a State Premier without electoral involvement is undemocratic. Political parties are elected on the merit of their leader. That merit earns an electoral mandate. If that mandate is not fulfilled, it is for the electorate to judge.

This highlights our dependence on one person to lead the nation. It is an unnecessary risk. It is the Government and specifically a Cabinet team of ministers who should be running the country, not Rudd, not a gang of four, not just Julia Gillard. Running a country is immensely complex. It is a shared responsibility and requires layers of delegation and good governance.

Our Misconception of Australian Democracy

As Australians we pride ourselves with the presumption that we live in a democracy benefiting from the universally accepted principles of 'equality and freedom'.

We are supposed to have a "government of the people, by the people, for the people" [Abraham Lincoln (1809-1865]. But in reality we are denied full or 'direct democracy' and are expected to tolerate the more compromised version of 'representative democracy'.

But those so-called 'representatives' repeatedly let us down. They are instead controlled by their own political party agendas. Legislative voting is along party lines, not according to the say of local electoral seats that our 'representatives' are supposed to represent.

In fact we have what's branded an 'illiberal democracy' - a narrower definition of full democracy and one in which, although elections take place, voters are excluded from government agendas, denied any say into party policies, denied any say in drafting legislation, denied any say in constructing government budget priorities. Party politics is where the real political power lies in Australian politics, not with the people.

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