I can do that!

In case you haven’t seen it. And, to remind you of this blog’s ‘centrist’ roots, remember as you’re watching, it was Paul Keating who first introduced this style of advertising. Remember Bill Hunter clambering around the wide brown land telling us what a great thing ‘Working Nation’ was just before the 1996 election?

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16 years ago

It’s true Keating used more than his fair share of our money on media monitoring and government advertising.

However there are earlier examples, eg:

Medicare. Letters to householders featuring state premiers (if they were Labor, which most were) stating that Medicare was simpler and fairer. This were sent in an election year (1984).

International Youth Year. OK, so 1985 wasn’t an election year, but there was some fed govt sponsored televised rock thing. They were supposedly interested in what youth thought, set up a phone hotline promoted as ‘Talk to Hawke’. I was in the target age but though that was unlikely, so all it did was furthered my cynicism.

Worse, since these signs still pollute our streets today, are the ‘Roads to Recovery’ signs. About mid-90s, so I’m not sure whether to blame Keating or Howard. But Hawke is probably culpable given the forest of similar signs proclaiming ‘This is a Bicentenial Road Project’ several years earlier. ‘Roads to Recovery’ is offensive on several levels – the loaded term ‘recovery’ and its encouragement of a cargo cult infrastructure fetishism.

derrida derider
derrida derider
16 years ago

Yep, I thought at the time that one day the ALP is going to rue the day it misused taxpayer’s money on election propaganda. Just as I now think the Libs are going to rue the day they expanded this boondoggle to new heights of shamelesssness. Their regrets will come in about 3 years time when the Rudd government saturates our airwaves with pre-election stuff.

It’s just another thing that makes me think that the traditional Australian contempt for pollies of all stripes is well judged.

16 years ago

Uuurrrggghh: Roads to Recovery. There are heaps of those signs in the City of Sydney – I wonder if they’ve popped up in the last two years. What is the recovery to which we’re heading and how does fixing up a road lead us there? Agree that it’s cargo-cultism.


[…] this exciting election season: The ALP pre-election advertising from 1996. Taxpayer funded, too. This entry was posted on Tuesday, October 16th, 2007 at 10:00 am and is […]