TE-BO: The Election Trail – 3 – Abbott v Rudd verses the Media Battle …

Abbott v Rudd verses the Media Battle …
| Author: TE-BO – The Eye-Ball Opinion| Date: Aug 25th, 2013 |


the-eyeball-opinion6The battle in any election comes down to who wins the media battle.  Friendly media wins more elections that they lose.  That is to say – when the media pick a side, the battle is no longer about the political will, or who has the better policies, but about the image voters will be shown.  The media will do their best to show how the individuals perform in a toxic bias that suits their purpose and editorial opinion.   It becomes everyone’s ‘dog and pony’ show.

So much of the media is focus on the opposing Leaders – their individual mistakes and gaffs.  Never has a Democratic Nation ever been run by an individual, yet for decades election campaigns in this Nation are run as Presidential style campaigns.  As such – when the voter goes to the ballot box on election day, most vote the ‘top of the ticket’ rather then with any knowledge about their local candidates.

The big plus for the media when they focus their coverage on the Leaders is they can contain their resources.  Spreading their wares further mean costs skyrocket up against a coverage appeal against advertisers reluctant or willing to pay for anything less then prime time coverage.

Then there is the depth of questions Leaders receive and respond to from media journalists – they don’t engage the Nation nor seem to ask the question most on the electorates mind.  Public forum Q&A’s tend to have more appeal but offer up the opportunity for the candidate to ‘gaff’ or have a question on camera they are less then willing to answer.  Questions like should Gillard’s Leadership legacies be Rudd’s problem?  Has Rudd got more to offer than campaign skills?  Is Abbott the real deal as a Leader, or is he a better follower?  All hypotheticals that have nothing to do with the real election campaign from a media perspective, but obvious questions from the electorate’s view on their choice of candidates.   Who is best placed as a collective to lead the Nation?

Talking a look at the Economic Management credentials of both the major Political Party’s,  and  three weeks into this campaign, the better Economic Management debate lights up a media sham because firstly, the Opposition don’t want to expose their costings and where they will make the savings needed to fund their stated policies, secondly, the media themselves don’t understand ‘economic management’ beyond how they can simplify the message so their audiences understands.

This Government’s budget record speaks for itself – Wayne Swan‘s numerous and successive budget failures has him owning the title – “Australia’s Worst Treasurer”.  That despite Euro Magazine crowning him Treasurer of the year in 2011.   The mess in his forward estimates, combined with the new $200 billion debt burden, and the complete failure of Treasury to get their head around how to recalibrate their modelling predictions in a changing global market, have created a nightmare of economic forecast predictions for the new Treasurer Chris Bowen, and whoever is to follow.   Just how bad Wayne Swan performed cannot be overstated.

Combine this Government’s record on economic management with the self admissions from the Opposition Treasurer Joe Hockey about the Coalition’s own $70 billion hole, and since revised during the week by respected economist Mr Eastlake to at least a $30 billion ‘black hole’ – and the electorate is in a lotto draw on who has the better economic management skills.  Once the media will decide the debate in a case of the blind leading the blind.

Neither side has creditability on economic Management and the single reason is very simple.  Both sides of Government have agreed to and signed a bi-partisan agreement with the RBA that has them only targeting inflation as the single economic indicator they are charged with managing.

Both sides have governed whilst the high A$ dollar policy challenged every industry in the Nation over the past 10 odd years.  Both sides sat back and allowed the A$ to rise and stay high, Rudd/Gillard in a post GFC environment when inflation was never going to be a problem. 

During the per GFC period under Howard/Costello, the mining boom was largely offset by the A$’s rise.  The currency rose 40-50% above its mean average of A$0.75c since it was floated in the early 80’s.   What is glaringly obvious is that neither side saw the downside to economic performance in allowing the high A$ policy.

This single economic factor rendered Australian Industry impotent in a Global marketplace where labour costs play a major role in dictating investment flows.  Neither side understood how the A$ would impact on Australian labour costs.  During this high A$ period, Australia became one of the most expensive Nations in the world to trade with.  Both sides of Politics stood back and allowed it to happen whilst they were in Government.

The real cost in A$ revenue streams over the 10 odd years of a high A$ since the early 2000’s runs into the A$ trillions … it is akin to Australian producers having their goods on a 40-60% discounted sale for 10 odd years.

And you know what – not one of the Leaders, or the Treasurers from either side want or will talk about it – they just don’t understand what it is they don’t understand.

Yet – all the media want to focus on is how either side plan to fund their campaign policy announcements on the other side of the election.   A Government’s economic mistakes and mismanagement always become the problem of the incoming Government.  It has always been this way and in all honesty – those responsible for the mistakes are never made accountable.

Murdoch and his News Ltd publications have chosen a side, as have the Fairfax media empire, and as have the National Broadcaster the ABC … there really is not an alternative where fair-minded reporting is available.

When the media have such pitted interests, do the public get a campaign message based on truth, or is the message clouded by feeble attempts at entertainment distractions, and portraying the negative aspects of opposing campaigns?   Kissing a baby is deemed to be good publicity – how does they tell us about Management capabilities in running a Nation – why do the Leaders seek out these type of media buys?

the-eyeball-opinion6

 […EYE-BALL…]

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4 thoughts on “TE-BO: The Election Trail – 3 – Abbott v Rudd verses the Media Battle …

  1. The debate on Murdoch media is fascinating. The ABC is the greatest critic, and they are clearly biased the other way. Under a Coalition government funding to ABC will be reduced. Ideology determines that.

    When considering News Corp, they are a mix of corporate interest as well, reflecting their readership (polling) and “why can’t they simply report the facts, without making such acuminate conclusion?”

    On economic management the ALP delude themselves, which fits a pattern of deluding the electorate, which makes the election so predictable. Delusion is a funny thing. The classic novel Billy Liar brings this out. When one is deluded you live the lie. You can’t tell the truth, you are both deluded and delusional. Wayne Swan was the best example, calling the Coalition “negativity”. In the last week, a desperate government is most negative. The very concept of in opposition you can’t implement your policies is but another way of saying “power is absolute”, an incapacity to listen to the ethers (call it universal wisdom or natural correction).

    The current economic trajectory is woeful. In 5 plus years we have gone from virtually no economic debt to outstanding debt of about $250 billion. ALP says we make no apology for putting jobs first. Sooner or later you have to pay the pennyman. There is no free ride. What component of our positive GDP of the last 4 years since GFC is government spending, and what proportion is accredited to the minerals export boom? It simply doesn’t help the household sector, it is ivory tower stuff – a tower of Babel, inlaid with gold fittings but very poor foundations.

    This election will be determined in the household sector. Those fearing their jobs, who perceive themselves going backwards. Those who know that miserly fiscal management is better in the long run than living this deluded and delusional clap trap that we have been fed for three years under a Gillard minority government, and now under Rudd has not really changed. It is more of the same. We will spend our way out of this.

    This leads on to costing of coalition policy. I do not know what I will be doing in 1 year. I have a fair idea of what I will be doing, but no certainty. I will still prepare. This is why it is termed an outlook. If I had to turn around a 250 billion deficit what might I cut first? I would look at discretionary spending, which does not mean cut to the bone or amputate, it means to trim fat.Under Peter Costello we were penny wise, and not pound foolish. That is expected from the coalition. That is too often not what we hear from Joe Hockey which frightens us. But it is there.In 12 months we need to try to return to a balanced budget, without the policy meaning a hard landing, a downward spiral. Every minerals boom in Australia’s history has led to a hard landing. Post !850’s, post 1890’s, post 1960’s. Fact. Now consider what has led to the next boom. It is very difficult to predict. Each scenario was of its time. We need to stimulate, yet still cut government spending. It is a very difficult thing to do. But we can’t continue to run deficits at the rate of about $40 billion per annum ($250 billion over 5 odd years). Treasury forecasts are not worth the paper they are written on. They rely too heavily on assumptions, assumptions too easily manipulated. Treasury really needs to come into the 21st century.

    As I wrote above, by 9pm next Saturday we will be talking other interests besides politics while we move into end play. For Abbott and Truss and co the champagne will flow, while they know the job ahead. A real task of effecting change. We will not know the make up of the senate from July 2014. But we do know the makeup of the senate until then. How will they realistically repeal the carbon tax? Cost that one.Do you consider it a black hole, or an uncertainty?

    Last Wednesday I had a good look at the senate ballot paper. In an article I wrote a few months ago I said you could preference above the line. I was wrong. That only happens at State and Local elections. To preference you must vote below the line. In NSW that means to number from 1 to 110. Without mistake. I will. I will vote ALP 110 descending, then Liberal National descending, any party I favour, 1 ascending, then when I have run out of parties I like starting from left to right on the paper I will complete the sequence. If you make a mistake ask for another replacement ballot paper. Let these mugs know exactly what you think of them.

    Last Wednesday I wrote to Albanese. It is titled “You have a hide”. It goes (slightly modified to take out identifiers);

    Last night your re election workers have called at my home, and asked how we voted in 2010, and our voting intentions on Saturday week.

    My wife told me of the call tonight.

    I voted for you in 2010, I will put you last this time because you simply don’t answer my e mails or my calls to your electoral office.

    I live in Grayndler.

    I will encourage everyone I can to vote you out.

    In the safest 2 party preferred seat in NSW my vote counts for little, but not all of my acquaintances live in Grayndler, many live in more marginal seats like Kingsford Smith, Reid, McMahon, Robertson Dobell and so on each of which the ALP will lose on September 7.

    I truly hope, while not believing Kevin Rudd will lose Griffith. It will be a mercy killing.

    Turn the page.

    This outgoing ALP government has failed the most basic test of democracy.

    It wants to sell their policies, rather than listen to their constituencies.

    That is what came out in tonight’s debate.

    Why do you and Tony Burke and every other MHR ignore e-mails?

    At your own peril.

    I ask you to care to refer to the blog sphere. I write under the pen name of Herman O’Hermitage (the man of the ages). Try googling Herman O’Hermitage.

    I can guarantee this E mail will be re produced in time in a blog with personal addresses and individual references omitted.

    If you would care to actually start to listen to your constituency, we might all turn the page, while ever you have your head stuck up your arse, telling us what to think, you will remain an opposition leader (or spokesperson).

    Please don’t have anyone call my house again while you have failed to offer the common courtesy of replying to my calls and my emails.

    It is far too often said, you only call (you Politicians) at election time.
    You are a joke,

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  2. Now that the Murdoch press ie The Australian has called Rudd to lose his own seat of Griffith then what?

    I have been waiting for reality to set in.

    Krudd is about to suffer a defeat that is equal but different to being deposed. I simply don’t believe he will lose his own seat. It could be a mercy death.

    On election night, across Braddon, Bass, McMahon, Corangamite Dobell, Robertson etc the result will be known before 9.00pm aest. True believers can speculate about Denison and Melbourne or Melbourne Port but Liberal hierarchy will be brimming from ear to ear. The seat of Fraser will be a tiny swing against the incoming government. A simpleton like Barnaby Joyce or Scott Morrison will only think about the Treasury benches. Abbott has been coached to moderate exuberance.

    The real issue is the senate. By the time the HOR is called ie Rudd concedes, and Abbott gets made up to face the party faithful the 40 senate positions will be about 16 Coalition at best. By the close of counting, the count will be Coalition 19 at best. For those still listening there will be analysis of the left right divide in the upper house, and the final answer will remain that Green by virtue of result 2010 will control the senate.

    Nixon will be exuberant because despite Adam Bandt having lost his seat and Hanson Young being considered an outside chance of retaining her senate position the Greens will finally realise they are the Upper House Balance of Power until July 2017. Lee Rhiannon will announce a leadership challenge.

    The real truth is that on September 10th to 12th the real makeup of the Upper House will be known, and as always those with any modicum of right wing inclination.

    Most Australians will be digesting football news. South Sydney to face Melbourne in the preliminary semi final at home, while Fremantle have defeated Geelong at Cardinia Park and earned a week off. Some might think of golf. Or Spring Carnival. No one dares mention the Ashes. It will be 2014 before the electorate gets close to fron page news again, despite trying.

    Only should Rudd lose his seat, will any other put their hand up to lead the ALP. Shorten will decide to wait until late 2014. Peter Beattie will return to some dopey professorial chair in the USA, cursing those dopes who thought he might just be canonised. In a handful of years, he will become a chancellor of any old backwater university with another 5 honorary doctoral degrees.

    As for Bob Carr he will start an new academy of media manipulation.He will be urged to chair the reconstruction of the NSW right.

    Between now and next February don’t get too excited. The rally on the ASX on September 9 and 10 will falter as the finance industry starts to look towards Sept quarter data.

    Believing in sanity is itself indeed insanity.

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