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Thread: The Mark Latham Diaries

  1. #16
    International Captain Slow Love™'s Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by shounak
    The ALP is not capable of leading the country. The civil war's in their party seem much greater then the Coalition trials and tribulations. But noone can really say which one is greater..

    The fact is though that most people would prefer Howard to Latham.

    I'd say you'd get a similar response if you did the Howard vs. Beazley. Beazley's a washed up ex leader with no more lead left in his pencil. Are there even any differences between Beazley's Labour and the Liberal party. Not nearly as much as you would expect.

    ALP's in complete shambles ATM. Not because of all this Latham BS, but because they lack a backbone. I thought Latham might be it at first, but obviously not.

    Labour ain't gonna get nowhere with Beazley.. It's as sure as death and taxes.
    Yup - these are the perils of a rotten, lameduck Opposition (and is why so many ALP voters have jumped ship to minor parties for their first preference votes).

    It's why Steve Bracks has such an easy time with a Robert Doyle led Opposition in Victoria,.
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  2. #17
    Virat Kohli (c) Jono's Avatar
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    I haven't read the Latham Diaries, haven't had time to pick a book up and that's probably not the first on my list for desired reading but I do intend on reading it soon enough. I don't like Howard but I too am not a Latham fan either, so I do echo some of Craig's thoughts, and I didn't vote ALP in the last election because I just find that the party doesn't appeal to me at all. It doesn't give me very much confidence, federally at least.

    SL could you elaborate more on the Bracks point, I'm quite interested in your opinions with that statement (sorry if it goes OT a little).
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  3. #18
    International Captain Slow Love™'s Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jono
    SL could you elaborate more on the Bracks point, I'm quite interested in your opinions with that statement (sorry if it goes OT a little).
    It was just a comment on the fact that whatever goes wrong with the Bracks administration - whether it's their betrayal of voters of the Eastlink tollway, or their theft from drivers via faulty speed cameras (and subsequent attempted cover-up), or the moneypit that is the provincial fast-rail links project - the ability of voters to punish Bracks is severely limited due to the inadequacy of the Liberal opposition led by Doyle, a very slow thinker who took the Libs to their worst defeat in Victoria (and who is also reportedly under siege within his own party).

    This would only be spectacularly more true in reference to Howard's government, who since attaining office will have likely faced an emasculated "liberal-lite" ALP under Beazley three times, and a heavily split party under Latham (who was elected to the party leadership on an oh-christ-anybody-but-Beazley platform) that couldn't retain any conviction or consistency when it came to it's policies (and the selling of them to the electorate).

    A healthy, articulate opposition that stands for something holds the government accountable both in terms of political debate while in office, and in functioning as a real alternative for voters at election time. When this is at it's unlikeliest (and federally, the ALP is clearly in something of a desperate internal conflict at the moment), the incumbent party can get away with a hell of a lot.

  4. #19
    International Coach howardj's Avatar
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    I don't think - despite Latham's invective - that Labor is in too poor of a position Federally though. When you think about it, Governments at a Federal level lose elections, Oppositions rarely win them. Government only ever really changes hands, at a Federal level, when one of two preconditions are met - an economic downturn; or an 'it's time' factor, where a longstanding incumbent is showing signs of hubris.

    When one of these two preconditions is met, the Opposition then has to be presenting a 'safe pair of hands' to the electorate. To that end, Kim Beazley for all his faults, is seen by the electorate as having a 'safe pair of hands'. For instance, people were not afraid to switch their vote to Beazley Labor when he secured the majority of the two party preferred vote in 1998.

    By contrast, although people may have been disenchanted with the Government in 2004, people didn't switch to Labor, for Latham wasn't seen as having a 'safe pair of hands'...he frightened the horses. That Beazley has a 'safe pair of hands' bodes really well for Labor, because in 2007 I think there's a big chance of one of the above preconditions being met - namely, an 'it's time' factor could envelope the Government, lead by a man (Costello) who is widely viewed by the electorate as arrogant.


  5. #20
    Hall of Fame Member FaaipDeOiad's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by howardj
    I don't think - despite Latham's invective - that Labor is in too poor of a position Federally though. When you think about it, Governments at a Federal level lose elections, Oppositions rarely win them. Government only ever really changes hands, at a Federal level, when one of two preconditions are met - an economic downturn; or an 'it's time' factor, where a longstanding incumbent is showing signs of hubris.

    When one of these two preconditions is met, the Opposition then has to be presenting a 'safe pair of hands' to the electorate. To that end, Kim Beazley for all his faults, is seen by the electorate as having a 'safe pair of hands'. For instance, people were not afraid to switch their vote to Beazley Labor when he secured the majority of the two party preferred vote in 1998.

    By contrast, although people may have been disenchanted with the Government in 2004, people didn't switch to Labor, for Latham wasn't seen as having a 'safe pair of hands'...he frightened the horses. That Beazley has a 'safe pair of hands' bodes really well for Labor, because in 2007 I think there's a big chance of one of the above preconditions being met - namely, an 'it's time' factor could envelope the Government, lead by a man (Costello) who is widely viewed by the electorate as arrogant.
    While you are largely right, I think it is possible that an Opposition can win an election against a robust government with a strong enough campaign and a good enough candidate. Latham, for all the criticism he gets now, was quite a dynamic leader early on in his tenure, and most political pundits thought he had a very good chance of winning all the way up until the last two weeks before the election.
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  6. #21
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