EDITORIAL FRIDAY 07.08.09.
It’s hard to believe that there is still speculation about the leadership of the Labor Party in News South Wales. Or to be more specific, it’s not so surprising that the Party might be considering its options at a time when it continues to register very poorly in the polls, but what is surprising is that anybody actually cares anymore. The front page story of the Sydney Morning Herald which boldly claims that Health Minister John Della Bosca is poised to challenge Nathan Rees as Premier makes for spectacular headlines, but even if it is true, would it really make any difference to the disappointed, disenfranchised and, to be blunt, disinterested people of New South Wales?
The level of distrust inspired by this government is such that it makes no difference what they say about anything. Nobody believes them. Theirs is a history of making announcements which are later modified, delayed, or simply abandoned. Those projects which they do claim to see through are plagued with problems, such as railway lines which cannot accommodate the new trains, which are running late anyway, or hospitals with operating theatres that are the wrong size.
The lack of faith between the people of New South Wales and their government is such that changing the leader would make no difference. It would still be the same ship driven by a different captain, but the iceberg has already struck and the ship is already sinking. It’s only a matter of time until it goes down, and thanks to fixed four year terms we know that the time will come in March 2011. Changing the leader now would not achieve anything except the creation of yet another ex-premier.
Of course, John Della Bosca denies completely the suggestion that he is aiming to challenge Nathan Rees. He has been categorical in his denial. He has denied seeking an avenue to move from the upper house to the lower house. He has denied seeking legal advice on the possibility of leading from the upper house. He has denied every aspect of the allegations published today. His denial is so comprehensive that should he actually become leader he will branded a liar.
Of course, that may not be an obstacle in politics. After all, as I have already pointed out, nobody believes anything they say anyway. Although it made front page of the Herald, I am not even convinced that anyone is paying attention anymore, because we have heard it all before. Did anybody believe Brutus when he denied sharpening a knife for Caesar? Besides, I don’t believe John Della Bosca ruled out being drafted to the position in the event that Nathan Rees should for any reason decide to voluntarily step aside.
And in politics, people tend to volunteer to go only when they are told.