Thursday, March 06, 2008

Coming out of the (Liberal) closet

(I fear I may lose a friend or two over this week's column (available here as always).)

Forgive me Father, my impure thoughts: I am, it pains to admit, giving serious thought to voting Liberal for the first time in my adult life.

I never thought I’d say these words aloud, much less have them published in SX for all to read. But after another week (Mardi Gras festivities notwithstanding) of pain and corruption from Macquarie Street, served up by a premier full of more hot air than the Hindenburg (and possibly destined for a similar fate) and his unmerry band of bandits posing as ministers, I’m at a point where I believe the alternative literally could not be any worse in government.

The ‘Gong-gate’ scandal is just another in a long line of bluster and incompetence from an administration practically k-holed on its own power and so past its use-by date Bert Newton looks credible by comparison. I’m not sure who I find more distressing: Meagher, the member for Cabracoogee screwing up our hospitals; Sartor, Minister for Developers – sorry, ‘Planning’; Costa, ex union heavyweight turned union head-kicker whose allegiance to anything other than himself is about as strong as Mischa Barton’s bicep; or Tripodi – too much said already.

Actually, I think it’s Premier Dilemma whom I find most offensive. At least with the others you get can your teeth into disliking them; Iemma is so pathetically craven and spineless I’d almost feel guilty sticking the boot in for fear of making him cry.

I should qualify a couple of things here. Firstly, I know good people involved in the NSW Labor Party; they’re smart, talented and actually committed to a noble political cause rather than covering their arses. I believe they are the future of the party and will go on to do great things after a stint in opposition, where Labor desperately belongs for a term or two at least.

Secondly, while I’m open to the idea that Opposition Leader Barry O’Farrell would make a better premier than the current mug – or indeed the budgie-smuggling joke who preceded him – I fear the hard-right mafia, under the rein of godfather David Clarke MLC, still call the shots. It would be awful indeed to give the Libs a shot in power, only to see them dismantle the few good legacies the Carr/Iemma governments have bequeathed to us over the years, such as legal equality and protections for queers and same-sex couples – concepts to which Clarke and others of his ilk are bitterly opposed.

Perhaps in 2010 I’ll take the soft option and vote for neither party, as our electoral system allows for this luxury. But for now, consider this my first step in coming out of an entirely different – and way less fashionable – type of closet.

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At 6/3/08 12:54 pm, Blogger dysthymiac said...

Premier Dilemma ?
I've been thinking he is
The Dull Iemma

At 6/3/08 12:55 pm, Blogger Adrian said...

It's awful, isn't it? I'm wondering what to do in 2010 myself. The government isn't exactly selling itself (unlike electricity), is it? Idea-less, bureaucracy-heavy, pandering to the narrowest form of moralistic conservatism: Dilemma's govt is more redolent of the Howard Govt than any recent ALP precedent I can think of.

At 6/3/08 1:52 pm, Blogger Ken_L said...

I don't think it's much like Howard's mob. It's a leaderless rabble for one thing, and hasn't got an ideological agenda for another. It's just hopelessly inept and sleazy.

Either Watkins should take over and put the cleaners through the ranks - highly unlikely - or I'll be switching my preferences from Labor to the coalition next time (Greens will continue to get the number 1 vote).


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