Tarquin Latham?

This article (about the latest Dick Morris-inspired ALP policy – banning food ads during children’s TV programs) makes me wonder whether Loopy Latham might be about to change his name by deed poll to Tarquin Fin-tim-lim-bim-lim-bin- bim-bin-bim bus stop F’tang F’tang Ol© Biscuitbarrel. How long does he reckon he can keep getting away with these sorts of non-policy announcements to disguise the almost complete lack of meaningful economic policy statements? John Quiggin denies that this is a small target strategy by Labor. Maybe, but it’s certainly doing a pretty convincing imitation of one.

About Ken Parish

Ken Parish is a legal academic, with research areas in public law (constitutional and administrative law), civil procedure and teaching & learning theory and practice. He has been a legal academic for almost 20 years. Before that he ran a legal practice in Darwin for 15 years and was a Member of the NT Legislative Assembly for almost 4 years in the early 1990s.
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Factory
Factory
2022 years ago

“How long does he reckon he can keep getting away with these sorts of non-policy announcements”
He prolly doesn’t think he can get away with them now, but until he knows exactly when the election is going to fall he’s taking a gamble by releasing policies. The only policies that he could safely release are ones that have to be distasteful to the government, or not releaseable by the goverment in the timeframe before the election, but liked by the electorate.
Also, if he releases his policies now, and Howard goes long, he might have to go to the electorate with a bunch of stale policies.
In this game, IMHO, it prolly pays to wait until Howard calls then go for the policies.

Paul Watson
2022 years ago

“Factory” is spot on. Right now, Latham is in a timing bind, with premature policy release being a likely lose-lose situation. Which also makes the government’s surrent tens-of-million-of-taxpayer-$ “soft sell” ad campaign doubly offensive. In affect, there is a (“hard”) policy blackout from both sides.

Homer Paxton
Homer Paxton
2022 years ago

I got the impression this is yet another case of Iron Mark pre-empting the government on this policy.
Johnnee’s reaction in Parliament yesterday tends to give evidence to this this.

you might be surprised how many parents would agree to such a ban. My children watch High five and there are heaps of such ads. It assists in providing kiddies with the right food.

Ml’ud Ken is just narky that he got Iron Mark SOOOO wrong.

Don Wigan
Don Wigan
2022 years ago

Of course a lot of it is symbolic and unspecific.

But tactically it’s pretty good, both in subject and timing. It more or less presented a wedge build-up over the lesbian mums on Playschool. In fact, with the govt reaction “it’s a bit much banning things…”, I think it’s taken the wind out the govt’s sails.

It’s not the first time either. An announced crackdown on illegal migrant labour (a REAL issue, rather than the talkback crap building up to the boatpeople wreckage) has also stopped that re-emerging.

I think he’s playing a clever game, and relatively honest too, considering his opponent.

Norman
Norman
2022 years ago

Miniature hot air ballons may be “clever”, Don, but only as long as the journalists permit them to float by unscathed. I dread what can happen to us as soon as the media summarise the words [and even more so the writings] of Latham.
The Bronwyn Bishop Ballonn was kept “inflated” successfully, indeed spectacularly, right up until the time that the plug was pulled. If I may mix my metaphors, you need to be truly super-optimistic to remain confident the floodgates won’t be allowed to open during the Election Campaign.

Jacques Chester
Jacques Chester
2022 years ago

I’m not sure that the floodgates will open, Norman, given that it was an incorrigible twaddler of an author that gave Bishop the flush. Not many of that species vote Liberal.

Don Wigan
Don Wigan
2022 years ago

Norman, I guess you have to assume the media’s got more potential for critical reflection than they’ve shown in the last few years. They haven’t exactly put JWH under the microscope.

I think you’ll find there’s a bit more substance to Iron Mark than Bronnie. And he’s got discipline. Earlier, the most conspicous thing about him apart from his ever-eager floating of ideas was his abusive rhetoric ( I still enjoy his ‘gaggle of dancing bears for the neo-cons’ as a description of Ackerman, Bolt and Albrechtsen). This has disappeared form his repertoire.

Latham isn’t so much ‘small target’ as ‘moving target’. You’ve only just recovered from the shock or outrage of some assertion before he’s off on another tangent. The comparison, at least in Australian terms, is with Kennett.

Homer Paxton
Homer Paxton
2022 years ago

don is correct.
his moving target strategy is working if howard’s performance in question time is any guide. ( I must thank my four year old for watching it for he insisted on doing his work at that time.)

Iron Mark’s discipline reminds me of Hawke.
It is the government who are getting frustrated and roaring into hyperbole.

dick morris by the way allowed small issues to defins Clinton which lead to credilibity when later big issues came to the fore. It was this strategy that the Republicans and Bob Dole never came to grips with.
Neither is Howard and company.