14 September – On this day

A slight (and I stress slight) glimmer of hope for the people of Australia, as on this day the ruling Liberal (Conservative) government deposed Prime minister Tony Abbott and replaced him with Malcolm Turnbull.

To put this in a historical context, Australia has been ‘blessed’ with a string of leaders who put the ‘mediocre’ in mediocrity. Since the 11 March 1996 that mediocrity has continued unabated … let’s have a look at the who’s who of Prime ministers we have been saddled with for almost two decades.

John Howard
John Howard PM 3/96-12/07
  • dragged kicking and screaming to East Timor crisis
  • made xenophobia and racism ‘sexy’ again
  • imposed unfair GST without electoral mandate, after wasting millions on tax payer funded propaganda campaign
  • gave $100’s millions to private health funds to subsidise private health
  • unquestioning supporter of disastrous post 9/11 US Foreign Policy
  • attempted to wind back industrial relations policy to 19th Century values
  • only second Prime minister to lose seat while in office
Kevin Rudd PM 3/07-6/10
Kevin Rudd PM 3/07-6/10
  • took on the GFC in Australia by spending to stimulate economy (GOOD), but still managed to stuff up aspects of his actions (pink bats etc.)
  • allowed ministers to take the fall for his decisions
  • a LOT of talk, but very little action after GFC response
  • left many of the worst Howard Govt. policies in place
  • presided over an increasingly dysfunctional government
Julia Gillard PM 6/10-613
Julia Gillard PM 6/10-6/13
  • completely mis-managed the leadership crisis and transition of power between herself and Rudd
  • alienated significant sections of the electorate by above (and Kevin Rudd)
  • failed to win election victory (had to cobble together a minority government)
  • lied to the electorate about a carbon tax (see above)
  • despite many legislative victories, could not overcome the legacy of her actions in winning the Prime ministership
Kevin Rudd v2.0 PM 6/13-9/13
Kevin Rudd v2.0 PM 6/13-9/13
  • the tragedy plays out to its conclusion, as Rudd returns after destabilising the Gillard government, but fails to arrest the negative views of the electorate
  • enough said
Tony Abbott PM 9/13-9/15
Tony Abbott PM 9/13-9/15
  • if Tony had not been Tony (i.e. leader of Liberals at election) in 2010, the conservatives could perhaps have won government or at least have achieved minority government (the cross bench MP’s were conservatives; but no-one liked or trusted Abbott )
  • the Abbott election win in 2013 is a very clear sign that oppositions don’t win elections, governments lose them
  • Abbott only has ONE ‘achievement’ … he stopped the boats
  • most government legislation founders on the fact that it is so offensive that the Liberals have no hope of getting it passed
  • The ‘Captains’ picks, winking and repeating every statement multiple times (very insulting)
  • the bar was set low … but Tony managed to slip under it
  • has the shortest period in office since Billy McMahon (officially under two years)

Please note that this is an opinion piece by yours truly (Rod) with a Historical flavour, in celebration of this happy event … I hope this will in the future be seen as a positive turning point in Australia’s history.