Aug 202007

After lunch today I dropped into the University Co-op bookshop for a quick browse around. I happened to pick up the recently published political biography of Kevin Rudd, and glance through a few pages. Discussing Rudd’s rise in popularity within the Labor party, the author pointed out that many of his fellow Labor MPs were disappointed that he sometimes agreed with or complimented government action.

Rudd sometimes appeared more focused on achieving the correct policy, rather than engaging in political opportunism. (p191)

I’ve heard similar complaints about previous opposition leaders, and I find it very disappointing. It seems that people have a mysteriously distorted view of good politics: they apparently expect good conflict, such as will be fun and entertaining to watch.

Surely the best path for the nation (and indeed, the globe) is to learn to value “correct policy“. We should be glad of the occasions when our government gets it right enough for the opposition to agree. Sadly, it seems obvious to me that our current government is placing a far greater emphasis on self-benefit than on pursuing correct policy.

  4 Responses to “Compromised by conflict compulsion”

  1. I very much agree with you! I get really frustrated when people say of an opposition “but their JOB is to disagree with the (state/national) government”

    Maybe they need to give them different nomenclature – but I can’t think of anything that would work.

  2. How about ‘The Alternative’?

  3. Of course that makes them sound like a reality TV show, another branch of entertainment that should be kept as far away from politics as is humanly possible.

  4. We could, of course, call the government “Us” and the opposition “Them”. But that would confuse those of us who feel little affinity with the current government.

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