Monday, 17 December 2018

So what if the next Governor-General is

military and male? Shock! Horror! 
And Labor was complaining that it wasn't consulted? Nonsense. It is just convenient for their current leader to complain so that he can push his very strong republican leanings.
The choice is a good one - and Labor knows it. The current unsettled state of our part of the world, trade tensions, territorial tensions, social tensions and more mean that it is not simply the government which will need to be a tactical leader. Asian countries will, whether we like it or not, respect a military man more than they would a civilian. 
And Labor was consulted. They were asked to put forward suggestions. They are always asked to do this. To suggest that they were not is nonsense and they know it. Names had been going around the nation's capital - and elsewhere - for some time. I am personally aware that a Labor senator from this state had discussed the appointment with one of the Coalition senators.
And the timing of the announcement had nothing to do with trying to steal the limelight from the Labor Party conference. It had much more to do with the agreement between the current government and the opposition on who might be approached and getting their agreement to fill the role. That was quickly followed by an approach to the Queen saying, "We want this person."
Unless there is some very, very good reason indeed the Queen accepts such nominations and protocol demands that the announcement be made as soon as possible after that.
But of course it suits Labor to complain they were not consulted - that is, they didn't have the chance to make the appointment themselves. It suits them to complain a woman was not appointed. (The last woman was the MIL of the current leader of the Opposition.) 
It also suits them to put it in terms of "running to the palace and asking for permission" which is not an accurate representation of the process but one with which they can get away. 
The Leader of the Opposition is actually delighted with the timing of the announcement. It allowed him to complain about a number of things - all designed to push the "republican" agenda. At the same time it allowed him to avoid greater scrutiny of some big ticket items that have been "unanimously" passed at the national conference.  Nobody seems able to tell  those of  us who want to know where the money is coming from for these items or where the labour is coming from to fulfill these promises or whether the amounts they say they will be spending are correct. That really doesn't matter does it? Promises are only made to win government. 
The national conference of the Labor Party reminds me of those meetings they have in Beijing every so often - those meetings where grand plans are announced and everyone agrees.
My problem is that I like a lot of what they have to say but I see no way of them ever doing it. They are good ideas in theory but they simply don't work in practice. They simply aren't going to be able to raise enough money to do what they say they will do. 
Of course that is also true of the present government but their spending does seem a little more restrained.
Yes, I know. I am much too cynical.
 Or perhaps we need a new political party - "The Possible Party" perhaps?

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