Like what you've read?

On Line Opinion is the only Australian site where you get all sides of the story. We don't
charge, but we need your support. Here�s how you can help.

  • Advertise

    We have a monthly audience of 70,000 and advertising packages from $200 a month.

  • Volunteer

    We always need commissioning editors and sub-editors.

  • Contribute

    Got something to say? Submit an essay.

 The National Forum   Donate   Your Account   On Line Opinion   Forum   Blogs   Polling   About   
On Line Opinion logo ON LINE OPINION - Australia's e-journal of social and political debate


On Line Opinion is a not-for-profit publication and relies on the generosity of its sponsors, editors and contributors. If you would like to help, contact us.


RSS 2.0

Labor's tide in and out on boats

By Ben-Peter Terpstra - posted Friday, 12 July 2013

Once upon a time, but not so long ago, turning around boats was Labor's policy; a policy Laborites were happy to talk to Australian voters about in 2007.

Today, however, Prime Minister Kevin Rudd sensationally claims that Tony Abbott will cause a conflict with Indonesia because the Coalition believes in safely turning around boats.

Is Rudd just trying to distract voters from Labor's broken border protection policies, or does he suffer from severe memory loss?


The facts are clear. In 2007, Kevin Rudd promised he'd turn around the boats on at least three occasions.

"You'd turn them back," he told The Australian (November 23).

"If they're out there in the high seas, what you would do is seek to turn them back through the agency of the Australian Navy," he told Radio 2GB's Sydney audience (July 12).

"Labor's policy" he said, "is that if people are interdicted on the high seas, then these vessels should be turned around" (Australian Broadcasting Corporation, February 23).

Yes, "these vessels," he stated.

So, in the spirit of accountability, I'd like to know: Is Kevin Rudd patronising Australians, or suffering from severe memory loss? As voters, we have a right to know.


In any case, and according to the PM's own logic, Labor's stated policy could have led to confrontation with Indonesia.

What's more, Labor is left with another problem. In addition to the free advertising material Kevin Rudd has generously given Liberal TV, his ministers won't be able to avoid scrutiny.

Take the new Immigration Minister Tony Burke. Like Kevin Rudd, he has a long history of flip-flopping, due once again to severe memory loss, or what I call Labor Alzheimer's.

  1. Pages:
  2. Page 1
  3. 2
  4. All

Discuss in our Forums

See what other readers are saying about this article!

Click here to read & post comments.

21 posts so far.

Share this:
reddit this reddit thisbookmark with Del.icio.usdigg thisseed newsvineSeed NewsvineStumbleUpon StumbleUponsubmit to propellerkwoff it

About the Author

Ben-Peter Terpstra has provided commentary for The Daily Caller (Washington D.C.), NewsReal Blog (Los Angeles), Quadrant (Sydney), and Menzies House (Adelaide).

Other articles by this Author

All articles by Ben-Peter Terpstra

Creative Commons LicenseThis work is licensed under a Creative Commons License.

Article Tools
Comment 21 comments
Print Printable version
Subscribe Subscribe
Email Email a friend

About Us Search Discuss Feedback Legals Privacy