Tuesday, January 08, 2008

Australia's greatest political, foreign policy and cultural crisis? Where are you PM Rudd?

Australia is facing what is fast becoming our greatest ever political, foreign policy and cultural crisis and Prime Minister Kevin Rudd is nowhere to be found. Bigger than the dismissal of PM Whitlam in 1975, bigger than Pauline Hanson, bigger than Tampa...of course I am referring to the aftermath of the 2nd cricket test between Australia and India.

Having been back in the country for a month, I have been waiting for the right moment to reactivate this blog. This appears to be it.

The situation is simple: India and Australia played one of the most exciting tests in memory, if not history. There were some very dodgy umpiring decisions. Indians and Australians are obsessed with cricket. The modern game is very, very competitive and huge bucks are at stake. Men's egos are especially fragile when you combine these factors and given the stress, it was a tinderbox waiting for a match.

Now I love cricket as much as any Australian (and almost as much as any Indian) but the reality is - GET A LIFE!!! Do we really have nothing better to do than overanalyse what the behaviour of some emotional men means for the characters of Australia and India? I dunno, maybe we could spend this time on HIV/AIDS, I.T., climate change, education, trade liberalisation...

If you think I am going too far then a few facts for you:

* Almost every news site has articles and 100s of comments ranging from the mild to the obscene;
* Peter Roebuck's article is the SMH's most read article today;
* Prominent political and foreign policy blogs, such as Larvatus Prodeo, Catallaxy and Lowy's The Interpreter, have weighed in;
* Politicians are weighing in, eg the Democrat Senator Andrew Bartlett and Opposition Leader Brendan Nelson. I am surprised I haven't received an email from GetUp!;
* People are analysing the financial impact almost as if it were a market crash.

It is very clear that Prime Minister Kevin Rudd's holiday absence has led to a general breakdown in Australia and our international reputation, our social fabric is being torn apart by petty rivalries and bruised egos. Have a strong cup of tea and get back to the office, PM! Your country (and the Kevolution) needs you!


Nick Goodwin said...

I see that Reuters UK - http://uk.reuters.com/article/worldNews/idUKSYD3139820080108 - is reporting PM Rudd's call for calm but I don't think that will be enough.

Daniel Hunt said...

Australia, I think we may have made a terrible mistake. Something like this could never have happened under Howard.