…from the quill of Antisthenes the Younger
Somewhere I wrote that Kevin Rudd is dishonest and he indeed, to the very end, tried hard to not to make me wrong. In the dying days of his electoral campaign he did a letterbox-drop – “Kevin has always stood up for us” A3 size colourful thing. To nobody’s surprise, two out of seven pictured “endorsers” promptly denied that they ever said anything like that about Rudd. One, allegedly saying “we want to keep Kevin Rudd, that’s why we are voting for him on Saturday 7 September” is a New Zealander and thus ineligible as a voter. She had at one stage visited Mr Rudd’s office to enquire about becoming a citizen…
Also, in the final days, in many electorates, the Labor paid helpers and so called volunteers, exchanged their usual, more or less trade mark red t-shirts for the blue, Liberal like, ones. First indication of that I saw when Rudd was running for TV cameras somewhere in Sydney, surrounded by what appeared to be wildly bemused, self-photographing Chinese tourists or students in red t-shirts advertising him; they were later shown taking them off. Underneath they had blue t-shirts, advertising Labor candidate Dreyfuss. This is straight out of propaganda textbooks – a different, misleading colour will not confuse your rusted-on supporters, but hopefully will the old, young and inattentive.
Fog of Chaos already wasted a lot of space on that unpleasant man. However, he is the true Labor, the face of the past and the spirit of its future. What had been written about him (and Gillard) would be equally applicable to any future leader of the Australian Labor Party. As Julia Gillard memorably said, “we are us”. Such admissions are rare in politics. Yes, they are them.
On The Night, Rudd was taking his time to concede the defeat. What was happening in the Gabba bunker prior to his appearance is a matter of speculation. Most of my friends and colleaugues thought of drugs, also mentioned as a possibility by Daryl McCann in the Quadrant Online. Others could not resists the Downfall theme. The clip is bellow, of only 3 minutes duration. Rudd needed over 22 minutes to say he won, perhaps correctly realising that most people automatically expect the opposite to be the truth. RAAF stewardesses and make-up artistes everywhere, plus a half of the nation, rejoiced.
His was a cringingly pathetic performance – the mix of delusion, hubris and ham acting. There was not a chance in a million, of course, that he would apologise for the misery the Labor’s misrule brought upon our nation. No chance of an apology for thousands of drowned illegal immigrants, lured to their deaths by the Labor’s “compassionate” policy and no apology for the pink bats deaths.
At length he was waffling about the “party of hard heads and soft hearts” and as usual he got it wrong. It is the other way round. Some readers may recall TV shot from his electoral walk along River Terrace on Kangaroo Point when he stopped on the almost exact spot where his Labor comrade Julia Gillard made her solemn pre-election promise to the nation: “There will be no carbon tax under the government I lead”. Rudd’s propaganda clip was spoiled by a homeless man sleeping a few metres away on a bench. No, Rudd did not step over him, but that contemptuous look! And no, he did not stop to ask if he could help. The chances that the man would say he was made homeless by the Labor carbon dioxide tax were infinitesimally small, but why take the risk? Anyway, compassion for the TV cameras was not on the agenda that day.
Towards the end of his protracted, hopefuly last speech, Rudd, trying to sound whitlamesque, or perhaps chifleysque, talked about “the light on the hill” of the Labor mythology. That light does not shine on the 160 million dead his party’s ideology is responsible for, nor, for that matter, on ordinary Australians. ALP now is a party of, by and for the trade union apparatchicks and assorted hangers-on. A “Labor” is a misnomer and the corpse ought not to be revived.