Julia and the Faceless Men
|Although I wasn't entirely fond of Kevin Rudd as Prime Minister, he certainly had accomplished a number of good things during his very short time as leader (before he was brutally dispatched by Julia Gillard, his faithful Deputy). One of the very best, in my opinion, was his determination to take power away from those ghastly, faceless men who were the leaders of various factions, both Right and Left. He insisted on his right to appoint Ministers without their assent.
Rudd's sacking as PM was the "Revenge of the Faceless Men". They are now back in control of the Federal Labor Party. They have installed Julia Gillard as the new PM, and I suspect that she will be forever beholden to them. Kristina Keneally, now the Premier in the State of New South Wales, is yet another female leader who is clearly a puppet of the Faction Bosses.
As an ex-member of the Australian Labor Party, I am only too well aware of the nasty power of these backroom boys. I am sad to see how they have once again taken over that Party in Canberra.
Update:22nd August, 2010
The federal election was held yesterday, and it was a cliffhanger. The most likely scenario at present is that there will be a hung Parliament, with 4 Independents and 1 Green MP deciding who will be the next Prime Minister, Julia Gillard or Tony Abbott.
It wouldn't surprise me if the Labor Party tears itself apart with bitter recriminations against those Faceless Men who knifed Kevin Rudd in the back and installed Julia Gillard as PM.
Tony Abbott, the Opposition Leader, has been praised to the skies for bringing his Liberal Party "back from the dead". The Libs were drowning before Abbott took over. It is only fair to give him full credit for uniting his Party and running an excellent election campaign.
Perhaps it can be said that Gillard never really recovered after someone in Labor's ranks leaked damaging information to Laurie Oakes, a venerable journalist with the Nine Network. So far, two people have been accused of being the leaker... Kevin Rudd and Lindsay Tanner. Oakes is silent on that score.
We will not know the final result of this election for about two weeks, as there are a number of seats still in doubt.
Update: 10th September, 2010
My prediction (see other pages) was that Julia Gillard would win, and she did... but only just! And with the help of several Independents. We now have the first minority Federal Government in Australia since World War 2. Will it last a full 3 year term? I don't have my crystal ball but it wouldn't surprise me if we go to the polls again much sooner than that.