Friday, October 19, 2007

Could Labor's soft strategy lead to loss?

Could even John Howard make these men look impotent?

This is something that's been bothering me all week, mainly because the same thing happened during the disastrous 2004 election campaign: Labor clearly has the same people running their advertising campaigns as they did back then. This was worrying me back in July, and I really hoped the ALP would wake up to themselves in the meantime. What we should be doing is seeing ads putting some steel-toed boots into the ribs of the Libs while they're down in the polls. Some more anti-Workchoices ads. Some more 'John Howard has been asleep on climate change' ads. Some ads reminding people of how Howard spent $2 billion of their money on ads promoting himself and his policies (and maybe a promise to change the rules so that can't happen again? Helloooo?). Anything that will remind people of why they shouldn't be voting for Howard, and I don't mean more of those lame anti-Costello ads.

Instead we've been getting nice, bland Kevin Rudd, speaking in measured tones, soft enough to appeal to grandmas yet forceful enough to sound statesmanlike, with soft, inspirational music playing in the background. Enough, Kevin! You can be a statesman after you win the frigging election. Anything earlier is just playing make-believe. It didn't work for Mark Latham and it won't work for you. The polls are heading in Howard's favour already, and presidential-style ads aren't going to stop his $34 billion vote-buying spree having an impact on the electorate.

One positive to come out of this week is actually Rudd's response to the $34 billion in tax cuts- given his past form I expected Labor to fall for the same trick as last election, making lots of promises in support of schools, the healthcare system etc and then promising tax cuts on top of it all to match the government and consequently looking weak on their fiscal management.

Just one final note- how much of an ass is Wayne Swan? I guess there's the possibility that he's under instruction to 'stay on message', in which case he's been given the wrong message, but in interviews this week he seems to be running around trying to be Peter Costello to Kevin Rudd's John Howard, once again missing the opportunity to put the boot into Workchoices and the effect it has on ordinary people's earnings.

Oh, and you know who I think we should be seeing more of? Julia Gillard.

Somebody slap them!