Join the Socialist Party Join us today!

Printable version Printable version

Facebook   Twitter

Link to this page: http://www.socialistparty.org.uk/issue/631/9907

From The Socialist newspaper, 30 June 2010

Australia: Gillard replaces Rudd but Labour's right wing policies remain

KEVIN RUDD was dramatically ousted as prime minister last week. After a period of sinking popularity and public discontent, Rudd became the first Labour prime minister ousted before completing a first term of office.

Socialist Party reporters, (CWI, Australia)

Initially Rudd had said that he would stare down any threat to his leadership. But with right-wing Labour Party power brokers working frantically to secure support for a challenge from deputy leader Julia Gillard, Rudd lost the numbers needed to maintain leadership.

In the end Rudd chose to stand down, leaving the way for Julia Gillard to become Australia's first female PM.

The 'leadership spill' [ie declaring that the leadership of a parliamentary party was open for re-election] was brought on by two significant factors. The first was economic concerns within the ruling class. Despite the rhetoric in the mainstream press, most bosses are very aware of the dangers that face the Australian economy.

While many were happy with the stimulus measures Rudd initially introduced, the situation has now moved on. The massive amounts of debt now have to be paid back. Employers are not prepared to sacrifice their profits, and as such want working people to carry the burden. The ruling class wants a leader that can successfully introduce harsh austerity measures.

In the opinion of many bosses Rudd was not moving quickly enough to rein in spending and implement cuts. At the same time opposition leader Tony Abbott is considered too unskilful and too crude to implement austerity measures without sparking resistance from workers and their unions.

Gillard, on the other hand, has a record of being a steely operator. Since becoming deputy PM she has stared down teachers who were threatening strike action and told construction workers to expect no changes to the draconian laws that affect their industry. For the bosses, Gillard is best suited to represent their interests.

The second significant factor that led to the spill was that many ordinary people had lost faith in Labour after a series of policy back flips. In opposition Rudd said that he would act on climate change. While his emissions trading scheme would have been inadequate, he ditched this proposal and replaced it with nothing. This disappointed millions of people who want to see real action to stop global warming.

More recently Rudd had pushed the 'resources super-profits' tax. This tax angered many mining companies and they responded with a mass propaganda campaign.

The campaign, which has been backed by the parliamentary opposition, claimed the tax would do damage to the economy. Many workers and even some Labour MPs started to question Rudd's economic credentials.

Ruling class

The mining companies (perhaps more than the government) understand that many workers are concerned about job security. In a dishonest fashion, they tried to confuse workers and have exploited the mood of insecurity in order to undermine Rudd and push their own profit-making agenda.

Rudd was clearly losing the public debate on the mining tax. Despite his claims that Australia's resources should be shared by everyone, he was unable to explain how the tax will benefit ordinary people.

The reality is that the tax will not benefit workers. It will mainly be used to reduce the level of corporate tax paid across all industries and to finance infrastructure for the mining companies themselves. Gillard has now 'opened the door' to the mining bosses, indicating that she may make concessions to their companies.

In general terms, Rudd lost the confidence of the ruling class and disappointed those who voted him in. With the federal election due to be called in the coming months the Labour Party are hoping a new leader will give them a much needed boost.

The problem for workers is that while Gillard has replaced Rudd, there has been no replacing of Labour's right wing policies.

Since Labour was elected to office in 2007 the Socialist Party has explained that Labour would carry out a similar programme to its conservative Liberal predecessors. Just like the Liberals, Labour is a party that puts the interests of big business first. This will be the case regardless of who leads the party.

The lead up to the federal election is bound to be filled with many more twists and turns, but regardless of whether Labour or the Liberals win, both will have the same plan. Like all capitalist governments around the world they will be looking to make ordinary people pay for the economic crisis.

The challenge for workers and young people will be to campaign against this plan and to build a new party that is not wedded to big business and that puts the interests of ordinary people first.

Why not click here to join the Socialist Party, or click here to donate to the Socialist Party.


In The Socialist 30 June 2010:

Only one choice... Fight back!


War and occupation

Western strategy on Afghanistan in tatters


Socialist Party editorial

From stimulus to austerity at dizzying speed


No Job Cuts

Academies: Fight the Tories' offensive on state education

Opposing the slash and burn budget

Spending cuts increase deaths

'Get on your bike'

Fast news


Socialist Party workplace news

Unison general secretary election: Prentis vote falls despite Con-Dem attacks

Tube workers ballot for action

Thousands of jobcentre workers threatened with dole

Workplace news in brief


Socialist Party youth and students

United for Education day of action 21 June

Students say no to rip-off graduation ceremony

No to cuts in EMA!


National Shop Stewards Network

National Shop Stewards Network conference: An urgent call for united working class action


International socialist news and analysis

France, Italy: Workers struggle against savage austerity cuts

Australia: Gillard replaces Rudd but Labour's right wing policies remain


Socialist Party review

Trotsky admirer copies his idol


Global Warming

Challenging the global warming sceptics


 

Home   |   The Socialist 30 June 2010   |   Join the Socialist Party

Subscribe   |   Donate  




Related links:

Australia:

triangleAustralia: massive yes vote for marriage equality

triangleBook review: Spy drama gives insight into capitalist coup plot

triangleQueen reaches 90: abolish the monarchy

triangleCardiff East Socialist Party: Eyewitness report from Australia

Labour:

triangleAnti-DOO lobby of Liverpool's transport committee

triangleBirmingham South East Socialist Party: Can the Labour Party be changed?

triangleBlairite horror and Labour's divisions graphically exposed

triangleTUSC conference to debate 2018 elections

Tax:

triangleThe Socialist Inbox

triangleTrump's tax plan: Robin Hood in reverse

triangleThem & us

International

International

6/12/17

US

Trump's tax plan: Robin Hood in reverse

6/12/17

Ireland

Irish capitalist state: rotten to the core

6/12/17

Women

Fighting sexism, violence and capitalism - an international struggle

22/11/17

US

Trump's tax attacks

22/11/17

Australia

Australia: massive yes vote for marriage equality

21/11/17

Zimbabwe

Zimbabwe: Mugabe gone - but his regime remains in power

15/11/17

Minneapolis

USA: Historic vote for Ginger Jentzen campaign in Minneapolis

10/11/17

Minneapolis

US: Historic vote for Ginger Jentzen campaign in Minneapolis

8/11/17

Sweden

Sweden: 'Revolution2017' success

8/11/17

Spain

Spain: Madrid rally celebrates October revolution

8/11/17

Minneapolis

US: Minneapolis Socialist chimes with voters

8/11/17

Ireland

Ireland: rail workers demand share of 'recovery'

8/11/17

Ireland

Ireland: dangerous ideas for the ruling class

31/10/17

Catalonia

Catalonia: Rajoy's furious response to proclamation of Republic

25/10/17

Kurdistan

Kurdish referendum declared illegal

triangleMore International articles...


Join the Socialist Party
Subscribe to Socialist Party publications
Donate to the Socialist Party

triangle8 Dec Local government pay: fight for the full 5% claim

triangle6 Dec Strikers rally in Liverpool

triangle6 Dec Corbyn's Labour can defeat Tories with socialist programme

triangle5 Dec Victory at Glenfield shows people power can save our NHS

triangle5 Dec Labour council Blairites deselected

triangle30 Nov Victory: Glenfield Children's Heart Centre saved!

triangle30 Nov Dramatic retelling of Grunwick strike

More ...

triangle11 Dec Leeds Socialist Party: Campaigning workshop

triangle11 Dec Bristol North Socialist Party: Christmas Quiz

triangle12 Dec Birmingham South East Socialist Party: Can the Labour Party be changed?

triangle12 Dec Liverpool Socialist Party: Fighting council cuts

More ...

Socialist Party Facebook page
Socialist Party on Twitter
Visit us on Youtube

Archive

Archives:

December 2017

November 2017

October 2017

September 2017

August 2017

July 2017

June 2017

May 2017

April 2017

March 2017

February 2017

January 2017

2016

2015

2014

2013

2012

2011

2010

2009

2008

2007

2006

2005

2004

2003

2002

2001

2000

1999

Legal

SP RSS feed RSS

Platform setting: = No platform choice

V2