In my King’s Tribune piece for this month, I’ve gone against the Twitter flow and argued the Gillard Government really is waging a class war. (Just because The Australian says it’s so, doesn’t make it untrue.)

In fact, it seems the ALP is waging war, full stop, with entreaties currently placed on Labor’s website to “Join the fight today!”.

This is taking “get back to your labour roots” a step too far.

Does Labor honestly think the public wants to man the barricades against other members of the community who happen to vote another way? Do we want a society riven even more than it is now by differing views on climate change and asylum seekers?

Labor strategists have seriously misread voters’ positive response to demonstrations of strength by PM Gillard (to the extent that there has been one).

Voters respond positively to leaders who demonstrate they are prepared to stand up and fight for the community or oppressed elements within it (as Gillard did with the ‘misogyny’ speech and the Royal Commission into child abuse).

This does NOT mean that voters want to do the fighting themselves.

The line between assertive leadership and aggressive divisiveness is thin and fragile – just ask Mark Latham.

Join the conversation! 3 Comments

  1. I thought (assumed) that the ‘Join the Fight’ campaign is calling for Party members, not voters. Perhaps a case of desperate times, desperate measures? There is also a possible line of thinking that when someone (the coalition and its ally NewsLtd) declares war on you, you don’t have any choice but to fight back.

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  2. Regarding the “politics of envy” and whether we should begrudge the rich their riches, I was taught many decades ago in high school economics that greater inequality of wealth tends to encourage production of luxury goods and reduces the share of the economy devoted to feeding the rest of us. It’s inefficient and wasteful. So the problem is not if a few are rich, the problem arises when many are rich and a few are absurdly so.

    The moral aspect comes in when the method of amassing those riches is taken into account. Many of the English aristocracy from the middle ages to the early 20th century gained their fortunes from piracy of various forms. The methods used by some of the wealthy today are not much better, and that doesn’t help the economy or society one little bit.

    What’s more, the inequality is increasing. Some may call it class warfare to oppose some of these trends, I call it trying to get an economy and society that gives everyone and all of us collectively a fair go.

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  3. The Class War (otherwise known as the ‘conservative free marketeers’ v ‘all the other’s’) is alive and well in downtown Oz! It’s just that there are now seven demographics rather than three!

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About Drag0nista

Political blogger and columnist on the interwebs. Former Liberal staffer and industry lobbyist. Studying the entrails of federal politics since 1989. Otherwise known as Paula Matthewson.

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