Rudd Redux, No Way (8): The Summing Up

I doubt if Kevin Rudd went to Barcaldine, a town in Queensland sacred to the Labor movement, in his first fifty years. I doubt if he has read a book on the Labor movement, John Faulkner’s True Believers, for instance, Crisp’s Chifley or Day’s Curtin, yet. He will, however, have read a good deal of the Bible and perhaps forty books on the Christian martyrs. He will have read more books about the Ming Dynasty than about the Labor Party.

It is not too surprising therefore that he behaved in office more like Herod the Great than Mick Young, more like Mao Zedong than Ben Chifley. He didn’t really know where he was. He was unfamiliar with the territory. He believed he could choose and sack his ministry as he wished, and if his ministers wanted to know what he was doing, it was none of their business. No Labor leader ever had the power he arrogated to himself, but he didn’t know that, he’d read no Labor history. His information, his instincts, his training and his predisposition were those of a bureaucratic manoeuvrer. To him the word ‘enemy’ meant people in his own party, not Howard’s. He gave Howard’s top ministers jobs that could have gone to his former colleagues. An ‘enemy’ was not Malcolm Turnbull, he was Beazley, Swan, Shorten.

His connection with the Labor Party is vestigial. He feels he is above all that. He believes he is Chosen in a way that is at least in part insane. It is tragic that real Labor people like Albo are falling beneath his harrow. He is the party’s worst news since Evatt, and has something of the pale glow of Billy Hughes about him. ‘I am waiting, Mr Speaker, for the crowing of the cock.’ He may be on the cross benches soon, devising in his restless jet-lagged mind a new party with Katter as his Deputy, or open to offers perhaps from his fellow cradle Catholic, Prime Minister Abbott or his fellow Anglo-Catholic, Prime Minister Turnbull.

He is not a Labor man, and never was.

Or perhaps you disagree.

Leave a comment ?


  1. I agree.

    His true political soulmate is John Howard.

    • You all knew.
      Rudd was useful.

      No wonder he’s angry.

      • Agreed, too. And no wonder he’s aggrieved and hurt. So, too, people like Labor Bob Ellis, whose beloved party embraced him. And so too the voters, let’s not forget us.

        “useful” is indeed the word.

        Rudd used the Labor party, as the Labor party used him. Howard foistered the supreme con on his own party in the same way: “I’ll lead as long as the party wants me” - but he was there entirely for himself, as it turned out. At least Labor get the chance to see the charade before it’s certainly too late.

        These people use “conviction” in the same way as they use the public. Let’s hope they do feel better on all our account. Shonker brothers, each.

  2. Rudd believes in nothing, except himself.

    Gilliard is disloyal because she stabbed him in the back. Rudd is acting for the greater good when he stabbed Gillard (and others) in the back by briefing against her at the last election.

    Gilliard is a liar because she did not denounce Rudd as a traitorous cunt. Her greater good, promoting solidarity within caucus so that Labor could still govern.

    Rudd will not stealthily attack Gillaird while working against her. Gilliard gives him carte blanche as Foreign Minister, so he resigns this post without speaking with her.

    Need I go on.

    Rudd was an incompetent PM with more power that any previous Labor leader. His power was based on factional support freely given and just as freely withdrawn.

    He had the power to influence change in the factional processess, he did not have the patience or the wit to see this through.

  3. I’m really enjoying these entries - it’s an exciting contest. But your blog is on “film and theatre” - would it be better to have two blogs, one on film and theatre, one on politics - or just to change the title of this blog? Saw the Wharf Revue yesterday on your recommendation and enjoyed it a lot.

  4. Could you boil down your problem with Evatt?

  5. Just watched “Curtin” with William McInnes, and Gillard, Rudd, the ALP, the country, us, believe tomorrows meeting in Canberra is important. Pfft.

  6. Bob could you explain Albo’s position to me please?

    Is he backing Rudd because he believes Gillard can’t beat Abbott and Rudd can?

    That being the case, is he choosing a madman over a monk so to speak, believing he can herd Rudd, the feral cat, for the better of the country/party?

    Or is he backing Rudd, knowing he’ll lose, to play the bigger role of the John Lennon to the Labor Party - come together, right now, over me?

    Do you believe his honour; his refusal to kick Comrade Kev and explain to the ‘punters’ why Gillard gave Rudd das boot (and in so doing right wrong done to Rudd) is absolutely misplaced?

    Could you kindly lay it our clearly to a dimwitted outsider like me?


    • Let me give it a shot cm.

      Albanese seeks absolution for the absurd and novel crime of June 23rd.
      In backing “aggrieved innocence” he supposes he shall have it.

      • Really? He’s like your namesake, and he’ll crawl over fifty good pussies just to get Rudd’s asshole, for absolution?

        This doesn’t ring true to me.
        Surely he’s smart enough to realise dethroning Rudd wasn’t a crime, absurd, novel or otherwise?

        He must know it was in the best interests of the party and the people?

        Surely he’s bright enough to see the honour in that.

        Surely he sees Rudd has no allegiances to his beloved Labor, and if so why would he need innocence and absolution?

        • They care not a jot for Rudd - they are simply washing the sins of June 23 away; where they, startled and wide-eyed at the fait accompli delivered them by Shorten & Co., told them of their own worth.
          It was, to their utter astonishment, slight.

          And so now they seek the martyr posture - an honourable suicide to Rudd’s aggrieved innocence.

          I like the symmetry -
          (in)elegant and tragic.

          Rudd would do well to remember the final line of the Mercy Seat he climbed into.

  7. I don’t know how many Labor figures honor or indeed care for Barcaldine and the proles it once represented, but it’s hard to see anything of that in the party now.
    “Of course the kids at the private grammar school are brighter than the kids at the local public,” I heard a Labor minister say on local radio, or something close to that. So long, Gonski.
    What does the Labor party stand for?

  8. For 13 years in the long past we had a Labor representative who is still spoken of with respect and endorsement by conservatives.
    Since that time, Labor has abandoned this seat.
    Ditto across the country.

  9. I notice that, like Kim Beasley, Rudd is referring to the populace as “folk”. I expect them to break out into Morris dancing at any moment.
    What a long time it is since Gough’s “men and women of Australia”.

  10. If the likes of Swan are labor men then we are in a bad way.

    This sort of crap is beneath you Bob.

    You are sinking to mindless bullshit for no reason.

    So far the cry babies have only managed to list exactly no crimes against Rudd as they carry out his agenda.

    And he did not sack a single minister.

    • See my piece The Moral Argument in which I list his bad decisions. He may have sacked nobody but he drove Beazley, Debus, McMullan, Tanner and Duncan Kerr to resign from Parliament, Faulkner to reisign from the Ministry, and Maxine McKew to lose her seat because he woukd not give her a Ministry, altgough he owed her everything.

      ‘Mindless bullshit’, is it?

      Please argue this.

      Do not, like Gerard Henderson, merely assert it.

  11. Great article Bob - I am in full agreement with all except I don’t believe Rudd has ever read the Bible - Rudd’s Christianity is just another one of his deceptions. I bet he hasn’t been to church since June 2010 but he was there again today with all the cameras in view. On the night he was deposed I was astounded and thought it was the dumbest decision the ALP had made in decades - but I know understand that it was far from a power grab - it was a brave and patriotic act.

  12. Tennessee Jericho

    See 2 Timothy 4:3

  13. Bob your reading of K.R. - jet-lagged madness or similar. Is he simply delusional, or is he inventing a new wave of popular support (like the people uprising in the Middle East through new social media) and applying this approach to a US style campaign for Presidential candidates.
    I agree with your assessment, but we could be wrong - tommorrow’s vote should give us the answer.
    :wink: Ozzie brian

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