The faceless Labor apparatchiks pushed Kevin to announce an elections. Had he refused to do so, they would replace him with somebody else, for Labor has long ago lost any semblance of rational behaviour.
If we were to follow ex-Labor leader Mark Latham’s logic, Rudd ought not to had tried to displace Gillard. He did. Yet I believe Latham is accurate on Rudd’s demented narcissism; he’s a former colleague and a fellow sufferer, after all. Latham also helps to explain the sheer hatred of Rudd by so many within the Labor Party and broader bureaucracy.
“Why would he? As a phenomenal egotist, he looks at politics through the prism of vanity. The worst thing that could happen to Rudd in 2013 is to run against Tony Abbott and lose. This would destroy his self-image and self-belief. It would also blow his status as a Labor Party martyr……On Saturday The Australian newspaper quoted “a senior caucus figure close to Mr Rudd” (most likely Kevin himself) as saying: “Rudd won’t be railroaded into a divisive challenge against the Prime Minister. It will be a matter of a broad coalition from the ministry and caucus to draft him into the leadership to avoid terminal division . . . Rudd has made it absolutely clear he’s only interested in leading a united team into the election.”
…Rudd knows this is ridiculous. In the first week of a comeback, one-third of the cabinet would resign in protest. Just three days ago, he lamented the presence of a “group of professional Rudd haters” in caucus – hardly the basis of consensus leadership, singing “Kum-Ba-Yah” for Kevin. The Gillard camp would have every right to do to Rudd what he did to them in 2010 – backgrounding, leaking and destroying his campaign. The cycle of retribution would continue to turn.
This is why Rudd has set the comeback bar so high, knowing his enemies can never jump it. A no-change scenario gives him the perfect outcome. The chaos inside the government will continue, driving Gillard to a heavy defeat, while Rudd himself enjoys carefully selected public appearances, lapping up the media attention. His three-year campaign of revenge against the Prime Minister will be complete.
After the election, Rudd wants to look like a martyr, the only Labor hero still standing. He can say he offered himself as an electoral saviour but the factions rejected him (yet again). This way, he can start undermining the ALP’s next leader, using calls for party reform to add to his martyrdom.
In effect, Rudd is wrecking, not running. He embodies a destructive brand of selfishness, drawing people close to him but then abusing their goodwill. Just as he left Simon Crean stranded in the aborted leadership coup in March, Rudd is encouraging his caucus supporters to work for a goal which can never be realised.”
How wrong you can get? Or right? I am looking forward to reading the ex-Labor leader Rudd’s memoirs.