The UK Election

This is the first of two pieces on the UK Election, this one for ASPI’s Strategist.

Outside No 10 for another 5 years Courtesy The Telegraph

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Kevin Rudd with Spade

Kevin Rudd with Spade (Photo credit: Blue Mountains Library)

Kevin Rudd can do it, although you don’t see him doing it on the news. But he’s quite adept at talking and walking at the same time.

The only thing he can’t do is stand still. If he did people might begin to ask questions, as this column in Saturday’s Canberra Times points out . . .

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Dr Kevin or Mr Rudd?

It is, surely, impossible for someone to appear respectable in public but in private to turn into a tantrum-throwing, swearing, and callous manipulator capable of doing anything to advance themselves. So, let’s leave the realm of fantasy and instead discuss the real subject of this column: Australian politics.
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Empress of Britain at John Brown's yard near G...

Empress of Britain at John Brown’s yard near Glasgow (Photo credit: neil1877)

There’s nothing like the ultimate deterrent.

It’s what ‘defence’ is all about. Being able to hurt an opponent so much that they decide not to tangle with you. This is very different, of course, from the ability to fight a war.

Currently, Australia has a defence force armed and equipped to do the latter. Some people want to do the former. The only way we can is with a nuclear armed submarine, as this article in the Canberra Times suggested . . .

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Jan. 6, 2012: First ship of a joint expedition...

Jan. 6, 2012: First ship of a joint expeditionary force, HMAS CHOULES at Garden Island – RAN. (Photo credit: Kookaburra2011)

We need a new Defence White Paper.

It shouldn’t be like the last one – a definitive statement of government policy. Instead it needs to play with three concepts: what will war be like in the future, what weapons will be decisive, and how can we obtain and build these.

This piece appears in the Canberra Times today . . .

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ch_narrow_stuart-20130520174910292405-300x0It’s a week since the Budget, but so what? What’s happened to turn Labor – or Australia’s – fortunes around?

I would argue nothing. This document has confirmed, conclusively, that Labor is now in opposition and Tony Abbott’s setting the political agenda, as this piece published in the Canberra Times asserts . . .

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