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Gillard's inevitable end now in sight

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Leader of the Nationals in the Senate

Senator Barnaby Joyce

16 February 2012

Canberra Times Column:

Gillard’s inevitable end now in sight

As said in Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory “for some moments in life there are no words”. Ms

Gillard should have pondered this in a far more deliberate manner before staff members started putting

words to paper justifying her impending assassination of the PM whilst she was emphatically denying

any knowledge of such.

It was the latest farce in a retinue of quite unbelievable and contradictory statements to add to the ever

expanding list of unbelievable and contradictory statements given in her time as Prime Minister of


It is all over for Julia, it is merely a political sleepwalk to the inevitable cliff. If you have a mortgage and

it is based on a politician's wage and you have a politician's temperament then you are going to cover

your bets and Julia Gillard is full weight on a very slow horse on a very heavy track. Only a fool backs

a circus pony on a fine day at Randwick.

No one cares that she is ambitious as all politicians are. They care that on repeated issues she has

been shown as not putting any worth in her own word. The PM’s office comes with a great and

honourable creed answerable to 22.5 million people and the lives of many more who have passed but

whose legacy underpins all we have. Public policy is public business and the higher the office the more

esteemed your warrant should be held.

In the opposition of late we are starved of attention as blanket media coverage deals with the issue of

not whether but when the inevitable will happen and PM Gillard like a Roman Emperor is assassinated

for an heir.

So where does Labor go? Kevin Rudd has burnt too many bridges and poisoned too many water

holes. He is the bad boyfriend knocking at the door with a fresh bunch of flowers but the same old lines

and the same old habits. Kevin Rudd would have to hit the polls before the flowers fade or all would

remember why they broke up with him in the first place.

If as a party you are seen as erratic then you have to look boring and Stephen Smith has boring writ

large all over him. Bill Shorten has not proved himself away from promoting himself, he was quite

obviously a Bill for Bill man and, in politics, we pick that flaw long before any others do because we all

have a little bit of that flaw in us.

The storm cloud that hangs over all Labor pretenders and contenders is the carbon tax and how much

sway does Dr Bob Brown have in the lives of the nine out of ten that did not vote for him.

Parliament has a very bad habit of a fascination in the noble irrelevant cause and the just plain

irrelevant. Sometimes an issue carries a fervour that is intense like a bolt of lightning but merely

metres away it is no more than light and noise and over the hill it is a distant rumble.

Gay marriage is an issue that is big on “The Drum” and in the inner suburbs. Away from the lifestyle

hub, it is an issue but not a top issue of concern and as a priority is only a fraction of the concern

associated with security in a job or the cost of living. Regional Australia and the outer suburbs are

thinking about other things, especially lately if they work for a bank or an aluminium smelter.

Let us be honest how long into the initial conversation of your courtship did you ask “what do you do

for a job” and how long would you of kept the account open if the reply was “I am on the dole”. All, like

politicians, are ambitious for the higher things, such as wages. Ask any union rep if this is not the case.

The romantic recluse from the reality of the world is great company for that bohemian escapade

somewhere between the age of 18 and 24 but then they go quickly out of style with tattoos, cars that

don’t start and tacky flats in dodgy suburbs.

The dilemma, have a heart or have a head; which will Labor choose?

Barnaby Joyce is the Nationals' Senate Leader.