The electorate shows little sign of being interested in politicians offering bribes, wearing caps, eating, playing with children, horsing around and running, with or without a corset.
Whatever the national opinion polls say, it is the relatively few in the marginal seats not committed to the Liberal-Nationals or the Labor-Greens who will actually decide who governs Australia.
It is likely that only a minority of them are regularly exposed to one of the three best sources of political information, the leading newspapers, especially Murdoch’s, Sky TV (far more observant of the ABC Charter than the ABC) and Macquarie radio. Otherwise, all they see and hear is the gallery’s essentially Labor-Green view delivered daily into their living rooms on TV.
The result is they are not much exposed to Coalition achievements or Labor weaknesses. When either is actually mentioned, it is on a ‘drive-by’ basis; touched on, but rarely revisited. This is completely unlike the sins, real or imagined, of the Coalition which are delivered with continuing and repetitive intensity. Just think of Tony Abbott or Bronwyn Bishop.
Then there is an electoral system designed, it would seem, not for fairness but for fraud. Fraud is delivered principally through multiple-voting (significantly more than the official figures) and impersonation-voting of both the dead and those fraudulently enrolled in the usual tsunami of impossible-to-verify applications delivered between the calling of the election and the closing of the rolls. Have no doubt, these activities are especially concentrated in those marginal seats, notwithstanding the financial incentive to make these Australia-wide.
Moreover, while the election should be a snapshot of the nation on 18 May, there is now an effectively unfettered option of voting from 29 April.
The result is many voters, at least one fifth, will miss key aspects of the campaign. This will be to Labor’s advantage because Shorten is increasingly demonstrating that he has at best an inadequate mastery of essential detail and readily contradicts himself.
Because the LINOs (Liberals In Name Only) have dominated Coalition policy-making, the key undecided voter in the marginals has not until recently seen much difference between the parties.
This changed when Shorten began to well and truly put his foot in it on several occasions; electric cars, superannuation, taxation, the costs of his truly extremist global warming policies, etc.
Labor had already been obliged to put Shadow Treasurer Bowen into purdah after he verballed the Australian Bureau of Statistics over negative gearing. This followed the arrogant way he spoke to older Australians outraged by Labor’s plans to steal refunds of tax already paid from their superannuation. His was the dismissive reply that you’re ‘perfectly entitled’ not to vote for Labor.
This recalled a time dining in the Cotswolds when Madame, the elegant and apparently charming restaurateur was doing the rounds of the tables, asking in a sweet voice how diners had enjoyed her meal. My companion replied thinking she would appreciate an honest answer, ‘It was rather salty.’
Madame turned into a shrieking harridan: ‘Well, ya ate it didn’t ya!’, she shrieked across a startled restaurant.
Shorten was always mistrusted by voters as an opportunistic back-stabber and one who sold out workers’ penalty rates to a union benefactor. But put under the mildest of campaign pressure he shows himself prone to be irritable and to put his foot in his mouth. Voters are noticing: Labor’s 2PP vote in the Morgan Poll and then NewsPoll fell to 51:49.
While party bosses can hardly put him in purdah with Bowen, they’re making sure his name and photo won’t appear on election material in a range of electorates.
Elections of course are always a matter of choice and Shorten is now helping to make the choice clearer.
Sometimes the choice is obvious, at least to the perceptive. Just look across the Pacific. Although most in the commentariat were blinded because he didn’t come from the swamp, Donald Trump was by far the superior choice, even if he were only to deliver a third of what he promised.
Despite unbelievable obstacles, Trump has delivered superbly. He is providing America and the Western alliance with the strongest leadership seen in years, all with his distinctive style.
Trump aside, there are very few great leaders today in the West, Benjamin Netanyahu being a notable exception. Soon to be Israel’s longest serving Prime Minister, he governs an extraordinarily advanced, powerful but small country. On just about everything, from water harvesting to technology and defence, Israel runs rings around our richly-endowed land and could teach us much.
Unfortunately, Australia has had only two great leaders since the war, Menzies and Howard, with the latter brought down prematurely by a commentariat who hated him for his ability and finally had their way with some hiding what they knew about Kevin Rudd’s record in government.
The result was the commentariat gift, the financial and border-control disasters of the Rudd-Gillard-Rudd governments.
Abbott had and still has great promise, the proof of which can be seen in the hysterical attempt by Labor and GetUp! to expel him from his safe Liberal seat. What Abbott needs to abandon is his clerical proclivity to forgive enemies not only in the media but those within, even in the cabinet he chose.
So in this election, we should not be looking for a great leader. The choice is which side is safer. And the answer is obvious. The Labor agenda will do greater damage to Australia than even the Rudd-Gillard-Rudd governments did. As previously warned here, this would be a government of thieves, thugs and constitutional vandals.
Prudent and realistic electors should also construct a fallback, a Senate crossbench of small party and Coalition conservatives endowed above all with common sense, including General Jim Molan, thus thwarting the illicit designs of the LINO bosses and lobbyists.
The important thing for all Australians to remember is that their decision on 18 May could be one of the most important in recent years.
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