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Labor, how do I loathe thee?

By John Mikkelsen - posted Tuesday, 7 May 2024

I'm probably not alone in finding it surprising that Federal Labor still had around 30 to 32 percent primary support in recent polls - an all-time low. But how low can they go?

To borrow the latest trending courtroom term which fits all the recent political own-goals and stuff-ups, it's an "omnishambles" from the top down.

Yes, Prime Minister Albanese, I blame you, along with Immigration Minister Andrew Giles, Home Affairs Minister Clair O'Neil, Attorney General Mark Dreyfuss, Minister for Foreign Affairs Penny Wong, Climate and Energy Minister Chris Bowen, Education Minister Jason Clare and the rest of your hapless acolytes.


You brought this into the spotlight when you reduced a young woman, Sarah Williams, to tears at the domestic violence rally in Canberra by claiming you were asked not to speak. Ms Williams, who organised the rally, had just recounted her own harrowing experiences. She stood beside you weeping and repeating "that's a lie" but you turned a tin ear and continued speaking against hecklers in the crowd who really didn't want to hear your platitudes. The '80s hit What About Me might still be high on your Spotify playlist, but really, it's not all about you.

The next day you denied Ms Williams' claims, but audio emerged of you telling her, "I'm the Prime Minister."

I'm reminded of a quote by legendary Tory British Prime Minister, Margaret Thatcher: "Being powerful is like being a lady. If you have to tell people you are, you aren't."

Even your normally supportive national broadcaster, the ABC, found your performance seriously wanting. Prominent presenter Annabel Crab wrote:

The world is full of imponderables at the moment. And for Australian women, you can add a new one to the list: How long is it going to take for us to get a prime minister whose response to reasonable female anger isn't to trip spectacularly over his own tackle?

The footage of Anthony Albanese attempting to cope with the febrile environment outside Parliament House at Sunday's domestic violence rally is nearly unwatchable…

Many of us now despair at how badly you and your ministers run things. Take the ever-increasing cost of living crisis and housing debacles largely due to your unachievable and costly green energy policies and an immigration Ponzi scheme to shore up an economy slipping towards recession. You say you will cut the high levels which according to the Australian Bureau of Statistics saw migrant arrivals last year increase by 73 percent to 737,000 from 427,000 the previous year. But a new monthly record of 105,460 was established in February.


No doubt the growing number of frustrated potential home buyers and rent seekers who can't afford the limited supply available, along with the homeless living under bridges, sleeping in cars or camped in tents on riverbanks, will be anxiously awaiting any change in their circumstances. My advice - don't hold your breath.

Then there's our worsening personal security - particularly for the elderly, women and girls (especially those in outback indigenous communities) and our Jewish residents who are subjected daily to protests and anti semitic hate speech on university campuses and in vile social media posts. We have even seen young children encouraged to call for an "antifada" (violent uprising) and chant "From the river to the sea, Palestine will be free" while the authorities including university chancellors and vice chancellors turn a blind eye, because it's "free speech".

Our highly paid eSafety Commissioner, Julie Inman Grant, also ignores the racist rants by Islamic hate preachers, but has banned the video of an alleged terrorist knife attack by a teenager on a Christian Bishop in Sydney because it's "too violent". Even the victim, Bishop Mar Mari Emmanuel, believes the video should be available to anyone who wishes to see it, and the head of X (formerly Twitter) Elon Musk has resisted moves to ban it internationally, despite a tirade of personal abuse from you and your ministers.

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About the Author

John Mikkelsen is a long term journalist, former regional newspaper editor, now freelance writer formerly of Gladstone in CQ, but now in Noosa. He is also the author of Amazon Books memoir Don't Call Me Nev.

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