path to a khaki election


Based on Warne family preferences, which included consideration for state service on March 17 for former wicketkeeper Rod Marsh and MCG availability during the AFL season, March 29 was in makes the optimal day, with March 30 being the second best.

McGuire said it was Andrews who noted it was Budget Day and suggested the 30th instead, so Morrison and Frydenberg could attend. Either way, both dates don’t suit the budget – and Federal Labor is shocked.

As the federal cabinet met Friday morning to approve elements of the budget, the government was actively considering introducing some key budget announcements while leaving others until the actual campaign so that they would not be not consumed by a national focus on the life of one of Australia’s greatest sporting and cultural icons.

Defense in frame

This week we have seen clear statements of intent from Morrison with two major defense announcements – a $10 billion submarine base to be built on the east coast to house the future fleet of nuclear submarines, and a $38 billion expansion of the armed forces by 2040.

Again, most of the media attention focused on the devastating floods in northern New South Wales and the Prime Minister’s apparent incompetence in the face of the crisis.

As is often the case, the truth lies somewhere in between. There are always things that could have been handled better, but the floods were unprecedented in size and scale, and no amount of preparation would have been enough.

The pile-up, which included direct comparisons to the government’s inept handling of the 2019-20 bushfires and demands that Morrison should have visited the devastation sooner even though he was in enforced isolation with COVID-19, pointed out the perilous position that Morrison and the government find themselves in – people don’t give him space and want to believe the worst.

Perception risk

There are no immediate local electoral consequences. The flood damage is split between the seats of Richmond, held by Labour, and Page, held by 9.5% Nationals. Neither is expected to change hands in the election.

The risk is that the government suffers more broadly from the perception generated by opponents and enemies of Morrison. Realizing this, as soon as he left solitary confinement on Wednesday morning, his first port of call was Lismore. The media was deliberately not made aware of his itinerary as he met those who had lost their homes and livelihoods.

Morrison argued that they wanted privacy, not cameras trained on their faces.

That may have been the case, but the Prime Minister and his guardians were also unwilling to risk recreating the hostile images when he traveled to the plague-ravaged town of Cobargo, New South Wales. fire in January 2020.

It was a tactic that backfired on the school of public opinion – and which Anthony Albanese, albeit with all care and no responsibility, exploited by visiting Lismore on Friday, cameras in tow.

Highlight the responsibilities of the state

At the end of the week, the frustration was felt. “No amount of support will match what people need in a desperate situation like this. I’m just being honest with you,” Morrison said.

Responding to criticism that the army should have been there sooner and in greater numbers, rather than leaving locals to help each other in the short term, he argued that it was impossible to expect what a large number of soldiers are waiting for just around the corner. anticipation of such events.

A defensive Morrison also denounced criticism that gave the state governments of Queensland and New South Wales a free pass, when disaster mitigation and response was primarily the responsibility of the state.

“Why do state governments constantly go to the federal government to pay for things that are the responsibility of the state government?” He asked.

“Throughout the pandemic I have been reminded every day by prime ministers and the media of the responsibilities of state governments and the restrictions they can put in place and how they can tell people to live their lives, and c was their responsibility.

“With regard to, in particular, urban water management and things of that nature, these are responsibilities of local authorities and state government. Why have they not funded them?

The advantage of tenure

History tells us that the war in Ukraine and the implications of what China might do should favor the incumbent, just as the 2001 terrorist attacks helped Howard cross the line two decades ago. Nevertheless, there is a downside political risk emanating from the spiraling cost of living that the invasion has exacerbated.

Long before Russian troops crossed the Ukrainian border, gasoline had topped $1.80 a litre, inflation was on the rise and the cost of living had risen to the top of voters’ minds.

The latest True Issues survey conducted by JWS Research in December found that since July, the cost of living (59%) has replaced hospitals, healthcare and aging (58%) as voters’ top concern when they were asked a list of problems. .

Following the Russian invasion, oil prices have risen again, gasoline is over $2 a liter, and prices across the board are on the rise.

Blame Putin

In the United States, where inflation had reached 8% before the invasion, President Joe Biden puts everything on the back of Vladimir Putin.

“Today’s inflation report is a reminder that Americans’ budgets are being stretched by rising prices and that families are starting to feel the pinch of Putin’s price hike,” Biden said in a statement. a statement after the US Department of Labor announced that consumer prices rose 7.9% in the 12 months to February, the biggest year-end increase since January 1982.

In Australia this week, the government began to take out similar insurance, not only against the exacerbating effects of war, but also against the fact that consumers will have to pay more for essential goods in the future to ensure that we have them. .

Morrison and Frydenberg, in their respective speeches at the Australian Financial Review Business Summit, called the shift from the just-in-time model that globalization had spawned to a just-in-case model.

Exposed by its dependence on essential goods from unreliable partners like China, Australia is moving towards manufacturing domestically or in partnership with like-minded allies, goods in key areas .

While collaborative efforts were already underway in the supply of critical minerals and vaccines, Morrison added to the mix semiconductors, agricultural chemicals, water treatment chemicals, telecommunications equipment, plastics, pharmaceuticals and personal protective equipment.

pain threshold

Frydenberg warned, however, that standing up to bullies like China and Russia by imposing sanctions and safeguarding supply chains came at a cost. Putin’s weaponization of Europe’s energy dependence on Russia “will undoubtedly test the West’s pain threshold”, he said. “And while Australia is better placed than most to resist these pressures, there will be costs borne by Australians in defending our values.

“For liberal and free nations, this is a price we must be willing to pay for the right to live free from fear and coercion.”

The job had none of that. “Of course the war in Ukraine will have an impact on inflation and the economy,” said shadow treasurer Jim Chalmers. “But Josh Frydenberg shouldn’t use the Russian invasion to distract from the fact that the cost of living was already skyrocketing under his watch long before.”

This is the same line that American Republicans are leading against Biden. At this point, Biden is winning. A Navigator poll published by the Washington Post finds that the public is rallying behind Biden’s handling of the war with majority support for his decision-making so far.

“Furthermore, although 63% of all respondents said they were worried about ‘gas prices rising as a result of sanctions against Russia, 86% still support the sanctions, including 60% who strongly support them.’

In Australia, the jury is out. He will have until mid-May to decide, with a budget in between.


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