If you even casually follow the circus that is the Australian political system, what would be the first describing words to come out of your mouth? Would you describe it as unstable and erratic, with little variation between the parties? Or would you describe it as a stable and reliable system, with a wide range of choice? If you’re wondering, I currently lean towards the former description. Whilst the beginning of the Labor Government led by Kevin Rudd was fairly stable, with strong public support evident in the “Kevin ‘07” election campaign, the system has been in a continual downfall since Julia Gillard took over the Labor leadership in June 2010.
Question Time, a space supposably reserved for open Q&A on the floor, has become a farce. Politicians continually fight for the media’s attention, using made-up phrases to denounce government policy, rather than to actually question the legislation’s strengths and weaknesses. What’s more, policy is not only attacked, but it is also not uncommon to hear numerous personal insults being directed at individual politicians on both sides of the house. Whilst question time in the past has always been riddled with occasional insults, the past few years have set the bar exceptionally low.