A big majority of the electorate appears to have stopped listening to Ms Gillard.The Melbourne Age is around three years late reaching this conclusion. Much of the electorate spat the dummy and stopped listening to anything Julia Gillard had to say when Kev Rudd - the government has lost its way - was replaced with Gillard. It doesn't matter that Rudd was a crap PM. It does matter that replacing one non-achiever with another non-achiever has been catastrophic for the country and, secondarily, for the federal Australian Labor Party.
Voters have been so distracted by internal and external speculation about Labor's leadership that efforts by the Prime Minister and her ministers to enunciate a narrative, a strategic vision, for the nation's future beyond this year have failed.The distracting excuse of the narrative. If only the ALP was better at selling itself, selling its story! Unfortuntely, the lack of compelling narattive is because there isn't one, rather than the absence of story telling skills. It's a big hurdle to sell a narrative that doesn't exist. There can be no excuses or blame-making, since the ALP was fully cognizant of Gillard's singular lack of vision, lack of policy foundations, when they gave her the leadership.
Also not new is the internal and external speculation about the ALP itself. This has been the only narrative to take hold and stick for three years. There has never been a moment when we were all relieved of this utterly indulgent nonsense. Journalists, as much as the ALP, are guilty of keeping the leadership question kicking from day to day. Three long years of it. I don't care anymore! Does any voter? I want the lot of them gone, banished from the public attention they crave. They are spectacularly unsuited to holding power over the well being of a country - our country.
If our national political discourse continues in this way, the outcome is writ large: Labor would face a devastating loss in September. Outright control of both houses may be delivered to the Coalition and, more importantly for our democracy, the opportunity for Labor to present a vigorous opposition in Parliament would be diminished.I no longer consider this to be a bad thing. Would face? No, Age editor, not "would": will. This is a done deal, and your profession has participated in and propelled this outcome. Coming late to appreciating how damaging this is for democracy itself is disingenuous. There is no moral high ground for any newspaper or any journalist - peddling gossip and scuttlebutt is never the basis of a strong democracy. Thanks for that. Really. Thanks so much.
So, when will The Age provide an editorial declaring that it's standing aside for knowingly creating the political garbage that the rest of us had no say in?
For the sake of the nation Ms Gillard should stand aside