Sunday, October 28, 2007

Political smear campaigns

Yesterday, Joe Hockey was busted admitting that the Libs are running a smear campaign, "based" on fact. (See Mikey's post on this - very funny.)

Hockey is also effectively accusing the ALP of running a scare campaign by proxy - because of the ads that the unions are running.

"I don't think the Labor Party is in any position to judge us on the credentials of our advertising campaign, when they've been the beneficiaries of the greatest fear campaign ever run by the union movement in Australia," he said.

A couple of months ago, I received a pdf of a page that had clearly been ripped out of some kind of magazine, outlining the "frightening" details of the union involvement of Rudd's team. I've saved it as a pic and you can take a look below (click to enlarge).

While I don't know the actual document from which the page was ripped, given the choice of colours, and the colours used in the ads being run by the Liberal Party, I can hazard a guess.

(And poor old Peter Garrett. Lumped in with all the "union officials". Because apparently having a life before entering the political fray is enough to incur the wrath of some. Abbott was in a seminary and worked as a journo before joining the Liberal ranks - and let's not forget his early union membership - does that mean that he gets to be lumped in with all the lawyers?)

The point of all this is: there will continue to be either poor or excellent attempts at swaying people's votes, purely based on the fear of what will happen. But the future is never set in stone.

Given that Australians trusted the ALP for so many years before switching to the Libs (and that was because they successfully managed to convince that they were for "battlers"), and they provided the platform for the coalition's economic growth, means that there should be no fear in voting the ALP back into power.

As for the make up of the cabinet? Things are never perfectly proportioned in the real world. Take a look at your friends - are they perfectly representative of the diversity of Australia? Unlikely. So you cannot realistically expect your government to be. You vote for the people you think will do the job best for you. How do you know who will do what is best? You do not base it some information that is presented to you by a biased source, you go and find out the information for yourself. If you want to live in a democracy, you have to be willing to put in a little effort.