Monday, February 02, 2004

That dirty word: Politics

I seem to be getting far too worked up lately about political issues, some of them not even in my own country. I've decided that rather than boring my family and friends to death with long rants about this sort of stuff, I'd just put it on my weblog. If it works for thousands of other boring political bloggers, why can't it work for me. My two main political concerns are that the US can rid itself of a dangerous and extremist political regime which likes to invade other countries even if the rest of the world thinks they're wrong in doing so, and that Australia can rid itself of an (IMO) divisive and "racism engouraging" government which (1) plays fast and loose with the truth and (2) supports the US government's dangerous and extremist ideology and actions.

I also think that Mark Latham has some great ideas, which should appeal to thoughtful people across the political spectrum, and breathes a big breath of fresh air into an otherwise moribund Australian politics. I don't just want a change in government to turf out Howard because I don't like him. I respect Peter Costello as a man of conscience and a great manager of Australia's finances, like Latham he is socially progressive and fiscally conservative. In a battle of say Costello vs. Beazley, I would vote Liberal, but as this is both unluckily and luckily the case (respectively), I am wholeheartedly behind Latham. I have actually started a meetup trying to create grassroots support for Latham amongst Australia's technologically literate called lathamforpm, in the same way that I believe Howard Dean and Wesley Clark have revolutionized political campaining in the US. A few people have signed up, but I would really like it if a few more would do so before the next meetups (Feb. 10, and then especially March 10). Yes that's you if your reading this, and you care about the future of our country.

On to the US, I think that Clark is the real deal, and I'm not sure why other people can't see it. I think the media have scrutinised Dean and Clark incessantly, and unfairly, whilst I think that John Kerry has got off very lightly, going from no-hoper with no media attention to supposed rightful heir to the presidential throne and the widely accepted 'most electable' candidate, still with no critical media attention, especially to the important claim that he is most electable. Why? Is it because he's a north-eastern liberal and north-eastern liberals usually do so well in US presidential elections? Is it because he has so much personality and charisma like say JFK or Bill Clinton? Or is it because he has the common touch and a humble background like say Jimmy Carter? And for all the pundits who make out that Clark is crap because he beat John Edwards in New Hampshire, but not by enough, and talk about the race as if Kerry, Dean and Edwards are the only candidates left - how long has Clark been campaining for? And how long have Kerry and Edwards been at it? What did the general population think about them at a similar stage in their campaigns? I think Clark has done an excellent job to get where he is, in the short time he's been at it. I'd like to see some of the pundits have a go at stepping inside of Clark's shoes, and maybe while they're at it they could try toppling a dictactor *with* the support of the rest of the world, and saving 1.5 million lives in the process.

But that's enough for now, my intention was to let off steam, not to build up a head of it.


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