Monday, July 23, 2007

Rudd 'Cuts It' in Tasmania

Kevin Rudd has followed Prime Minister to Tasmania. Mr Howard was there last week promoting Liberal Party candidates. There he had an embarrassing moment on radio, when he forgot name ofhis party's candidate.

Today, Labor Opposition Leader Mr Rudd has announced $20 million to support the forestry industry in Tasmania. Here, he has been very careful: at the last election then leader Mark Latham upset the union representing forestry workers, which then supported John Howard.Mr Rudd does not want a repeat: he wants to secure as many seats as possible, especially those that were once Labor seats. The union has swung its support in favour of Kevin Rudd. He will therefore probably win seats from the government at the election.

Politicians and political parties sometimes dilute policy for political ends: this is one of those occasions, despite concerns about the Gunns Ltd proposed plant in the Tamar Valley, near Launceston. The dilution of policy is undoubtedly good politics, given the events of last election. Politics is often about compromise: it's just that there are rarely any winners in a compromise. Except Gunns Ltd, in this case. They did, after all, pay the unionists to demonstrate in favour of their proposed timber processing plant in the Tamar Valley, near Launceston