The Shorter Hendo (TM)

As if to prove the point I made in my previous post about the current mission of the Sydney Institute to expose all media types as feckless readers of the signs of the times, Hendo can’t resist bagging out other journos for getting it all wrong about Latham. Hendo advances the very dubious proposition that Crean would have done better in 2004. Unlikely. I had some time for Crean but he was torn down by the Labor Party and if he’d held on, that would never have changed. Gerry also thinks Beazley would have done better against Howard. Well, the Beazer has proved that he’s good at narrowly losing to Howard. Yay! The Doc Evatt comparison also rears it head again – in short, Hendo’s no Latho fan. And he says so rather gracelessly.

Chris Sheil and John Quiggin are right – Latho had no chance given the performance of the press, and the same journos who criticised the undignified nature of Latho’s exit contributed to the very same scenario. Hendo sinks the boot in now that Latho presumably won’t talk back.

About Mark Bahnisch

Mark Bahnisch is a sociologist and is the founder of this blog. He has an undergraduate degree in history and politics from UQ, and postgraduate qualifications in sociology, industrial relations and political economy from Griffith and QUT. He has recently been awarded his PhD through the Humanities Program at QUT. Mark's full bio is on this page.
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Homer Paxton
Homer Paxton
2022 years ago

there is a lot of rewriting of history going on here.

prior to 6pm on election night both ‘strategists’ in the ALP and Liberal parties thought that the result would be very morganish.
Indeed they said so on TV.
howard himself told people he thought he would lose a few seats.

If the Journalists can be bagged then why not the pollies!

Vee
Vee
2022 years ago

First, I must disclaim myself as a swinging voter.

If everyone had a look at the Labor vs Liberal policies at the last election.

Sat down with a pencil and paper, looked through them logically and independently – the Labor party policies would have prevailed.

Or so is my belief but no one ever does that, they vote in self-interest and believe whatever they see on tv – the consumerism market.

The question now though is post-election why has the media moved so far to the right compared to their usual stance?

Is it because Howard won by a large margin? Do people really think that the electorate voted on the issues as a whole?

Of course they didn’t. That’s about as stupid as saying the Howard government has a mandate. To have a mandate – no non-government members would be elected to their respective seats.

Its silliness at an all time high! Or should that be an all time low?!

Scott Wickstein
2022 years ago

And should the ALP win in 2007 by one seat, the ALP apoligists will be going on about the great ‘mandate’ that they have, especially when considering the Senate.

Vee
Vee
2022 years ago

At which point I’ll say the same thing as above except with the Labor party in place of the Howard government.

Geoff Honnor
Geoff Honnor
2022 years ago

“Of course they didn’t. That’s about as stupid as saying the Howard government has a mandate. To have a mandate – no non-government members would be elected to their respective seats.”

“Mandate” in the federal political context simply means – an electoral mandate sufficient to form government in the House of Representative. That’s it. The media is always – simultaneously – too far to the right and too far to the left, depending on perspective.

Peter Fuller
Peter Fuller
2022 years ago

The striking fact about the media’s behaviour since the election and especially since Christmas is the exaggerated version of the champs or chumps interpretation. It’s closely related to Mark’s categorisation of the horse-racing version of politics, practised even by serious parliamentary corespondents such as Michelle Grattan.
Latham (the loser) is now derided as a moron. I’ve even seen his agenda setting on Parliamentary superannuation turned against him, on the basis that he’s a beneficiary of its not being retrospective. I haven’t seen a single press report refer to his tactical successes such as the protective amendments to the PBS in the FTA.
Crean was brought down by people within and without the Caucus who didn’t like his relative independence from certain factional heavyweights. Beazley was seen then (as he is now) as more malleable. I would like to see the evidence rather than the assertion that either Crean or Beazley would have led the ALP more effectively through 2004, and would have been significantly more successful in the election campaign. I reckon with either as leader, Labor would have had a diabolical year, and the election would have been seen as a foregone conclusion through the whole year. Latham for a time dealt Labor back into the game (at the very minimum, he gave a plausible illusion of doing so). Like most politicians and people, his strengths ultimately proved to be weaknesses. Decisiveness is the flip side of being sceptical of – or resistant to – advice. When you’re on a roll making good decisions that’s a good thing; when it all goes tits up, and you don’t get good advice (or ignore it when it’s offered) that leads to the impulsive behaviour, which is usually politically fatal.