Thursday, July 18, 2013

Kevin Rudd: A complete and utter fraud » The Spectator

A complete and utter fraud » The Spectator

A complete and utter fraud

In a perfect world, Kevin Rudd would not be campaigning for election but visiting an analyst. Therapy is the treatment of our age for those the ancient Greeks saw as tragic heroes, personalities at once sparkling and deeply dysfunctional. But an election campaign it is, with the Australian people as the judge and jury, and it is important to keep in mind a key issue at stake: just who is Kevin Rudd?
Much has been made of the shambolic nature of Mr Rudd’s first term as prime minister. But it remains unclear why the 55-year-old former diplomat is such a dysfunctional figure. Most people don’t expect political leaders to have well-adjusted personalities. As Matthew Parris has argued in these pages, most politicians are ‘dreamers, attention-seekers and risk-takers with a dollop of narcissism in their natures’.

But even by this standard, Mr Rudd’s character is really weird.

The centre of the dysfunction is not simply his ruthless political ambition — and the treachery, betrayal and frantic 24-7 mindset that go with it — although that trait certainly explains why so many of his colleagues have resigned from the cabinet ministry and/or parliament (see below).

Nor is the root of his problem his longing to be all things to all people. Most of what depresses and even disgusts people about Mr Rudd now was visible in 2007 when he ran against John Howard. His salient characteristics were trickery and fakery, the chameleon appeal to all sides at once, which helped him persuade the so-called Howard Battlers to come home to Labor without being embarrassed to tell their mates they were doing so.

From the outset, however, his leadership was an exercise in bad faith. From border protection and carbon pricing to economic reform and fiscal policy, Mr Rudd was always trying to say too many things to too many different people, to square circles and reconcile the irreconcilable. Given his recent flip-flops on gay marriage and 457 visas, nothing has changed.

But there is another explanation for the Rudd dysfunction: self-gratification taken to an extreme, an obsession with always being the centre of attention — like a spoiled child — and an addiction to being in the media spotlight. In our therapeutic age, perhaps we could call this pattern of behaviour megalomaniac or sociopathic, but perhaps these words go too far in pretending medical precision. To describe the same phenomenon, the ancient Greeks coined the word hubris.

When we write about Kevin Rudd, we feel like the pub bore. ‘Haven’t we said this before? Or maybe you knew that already.’

Alas, there are none so blind as those who will not see.

This magazine has long maintained that Mr Rudd has only ever taken the Australian people for a ride, yet too many voters — how many remains to be seen — continue to be deceived or live in false hope.

Despite the risk of appearing too negative, Tony Abbott is obliged to alert the electorate to what many Labor people already know: this bloke is a complete and utter fraud.


Unfortunately, this:

will always vote for this:
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