Nothing to Barack about

Nov 16, 2010

First Published on The Drum 16/11/2010

If the mid-term drubbings and G20 currency fisticuffs with China are not enough, Barack Obama will return home with more bad news: Australians think his nation has lost its mojo.

While Julia Gillard and entourage were all smiles at the official photo call, they politely chose not to disclose they were representing a nation that thinks the USA is in decline.

In fact, 60 per cent of all surveyed in this week’s Essential Report see the American Empire’s influence becoming weaker, with just 20 per cent believing the USA’s influence on the world is on the rise.

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The fight for the kitchen table

Nov 9, 2010

First Published on The Drum 09/11/2010

Nations may rise and fall by the sweep of history but governments are decided at the kitchen table, where all politics becomes not just local, but personal.

This is the place where bills and mortgage payments are pored over, family budgets are scrutinised, jobs and school are discussed. It is the space in family life where things have to add up.

Anyone trying to dig Labor out of its current hole could start by turning their attention to the kitchen table, because if this week’s Essential Report is anything to go by, Labor is in the middle of an increasingly messy food-fight.
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