The Dog’s Bollocks

Truth is like a dog’s bollocks – pretty obvious if you care to look.

The Canberra Commentariat’s Stockholm Syndrome

It seems that after 11 years of being held hostage by Howard’s spin machine the Canberra Commentariat is suffering some kind of Stockholm Syndrome. Even Michelle Grattan today seemed relieved that the Budget had revived the fortunes of the Howard government, and that at last, Rudd was having a shaky week. Whew! The ball is back in Howard’s court!

Yet for all its cleverness in giving something to appease every conceivable constituency, Costello’s budget doesn’t offer anything substantial or reforming to enhance the well-being and productivity of the nation. The budget centre-piece, the tertiary endowment fund, will be a boon for the capital expansion of universities to cater for the ever-growing trade in full-fee paying foreign students, but will do little to give the battlers access to tertiary education. Our national skills deficit will continue to grow and undermine our productivity and capacity.

Other budget measures are piece-meal token efforts to address areas of genuine concern to average Australians. As Peter Martin put it on Life Matters‘ budget round up, lots of problems are addressed, but in such small measure that nothing will actually be made good.

Yet the Canberra Commentariat seem to be applauding the budget and challenging, “What ya gonna do now, Ruddy?” In the long term, I doubt that the budget will be seen as anything but clever. Just Howard being tricky again. I don’t think the press gallery knows how to cope with changing of the guard, and would rather continue with business as usual. It’s as though they prefer the comfort of their confinement within the Howard spin-factory to the unpredictability of release to fend and think for themselves.

Unless Howard can claw back more than a couple of percentage points in next week’s polls, they are, to quote Costello, ‘rooted’.

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Filed under: Economics, Education, Media, Politics

3 Responses

  1. CortexVortex says:

    Shaun Carney in the MSM has jumped onto your idea – hopefully the echo chamber will pick it up.

    http://www.theage.com.au/news/opinion/a-very-real-contest/2007/05/11/1178390549276.html

    The other comment made is that Rudd failed to criticise the budget – I am pleased that he didn’t as by effectively ignoring it and presenting an alternative he has sucked the oxygen out of the budget as a running news story.

  2. slim says:

    I had similar thoughts when reading Carney this morning. Even the Editorial touched on the disconnect between commentators and the public at large.

  3. slim says:

    There has been a great discussion of the disconnect between the commentariat and the punters at Larvatus Prodeo.

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The Dog’s Bollocks

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