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Liberal Party succession issue irrelevant

The letter below was printed with some alterations (see further below) in Brisbane's Courier Mail newspaper of Saturday 15 September - James Sinnamon

Original letter

Like every thinking compassionate person in this country I desperately want to see the end of both Howard and Costello, but I am dismayed to have learnt that the Federal Labor Party is, yet again, poised to pour millions of their hard-earned advertising dollars in an attempt to, once again, focus voter attention on the Liberal Party leadership succession issue ("Costello and Howard side by side", 14 Sep). This strategy has been employed twice before and has failed twice before.

Logically, at some point, John Howard must make way to a successor. If the Labor Party objects to the timing and method, then perhaps it should suggest a better time and a better method.

The fact that key Labor strategists see this non-issue, rather than global warming, 'WorkChoices", the AWB scandal, the Iraq War, privatisation and almost innumerable other examples of Howard's and Costello's misgovernment, as the key to victory, suggests to me that the Labor Party urgently needs to find new election strategists.

Published letter

Like most compassionate people in this country I desperately want to see the end of both Howard and Costello, but I am dismayed to have learnt that the Federal Labor Party is, yet again, poised to pour millions of their hard-earned advertising dollars in an attempt to, once again, focus voter attention on the Liberal Party leadership succession issue ("Costello and Howard side by side", 14 Sep).

This strategy has been employed twice before and has failed twice before.

Logically, at some point, John Howard must make way to a successor.

The fact that key Labor strategists see this non-issue, rather than global warming, 'WorkChoices", the AWB scandal, the Iraq War, privatisation and almost innumerable other examples of Howard's and Costello's misgovernment, as the key to victory, suggests to me that the Labor Party urgently needs to find new election strategists.

Comments

Sheila Newman, population sociologist
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It is high time that someone made the comments that you make. It is amazing that the mainstream media does not. My explanation for this is that the media decides what gets published and the political parties have to tailor their 'issues' to the very narrow range which the media will deal with.

Barry Jones in his Sleepers Wake said that those who owned the technology and the media would rule the country. This is what I think is happening.

How do you think that the political parties could overcome this?
Or do you have some other explanation?

I guess we have to give the Courier Mail credit for publishing the letter, but if they were doing their job as well as they should be doing they would make these sorts of observations themselves more often and not leave it so much to their readers.

I think the impct of the letter was lost to some degree by their changing the start of the first sentence from:

Like every thinking compassionate person in this country ...

... to:

Like most compassionate people in this country ...

There was an interview with Beazley on SBS last night (20/9/07) on the occasion of his retirement from Fed Politics and Beazley was asked his response to a comment from the Australian and he said something like, "I know the Australian would like to run the country, but it doesn't yet". He added that it never would because Australians would never let it or words to that effect.

Well, I don't know. I think that the Australian and the Financial Review and the Age and the Courrier Mail and the TV stations do run the country because they are practically the only unifying source of information about policy and events. They market and authorise the 'facts' (as they wish us to see them). They employ fly-by-night journos, much of the time and syndicate US sourced 'opinion'.

I also think that the work ethic which is used to drive workers harder and harder in this country is no accident; peoples' noses are so hard to the grindstone they only have time to consume or flake in front of the tv news, or grab a few paras from whichever Murdoch or Fairfax print mouthpiece is marketed at their profile.

Another symptom of this passive vessel work-slave population is the passive entertainment syndrome. I caught some news this morning where an Arts Minister (the Federal Minister, I think) is talking about spending a whole lot of money to import Venezuelan musical performers. What about patronising Australian performers - people who do something of their own. It is all very well and good importing an act we can all watch, but we are already too passive.

And children are getting horribly fat. And the nation is heading for higher and higher diabetes. And the education system simply markets propaganda... "Work" and "Consume" and "Sit down and shut up".

And even that is promoted as an opportunity for fat surgeons. If you have a BMI of around 30+ the government subsidises gastric banding.

But some will say that I diverge.

P Fascogale