Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Can boomerangs swing back out, after coming towards you?

It's a fair question, because there was another putsch in Australia today.    Three years after Kevin Rudd was forced out as Prime Minister by the ruling Labour Party in favour of Julia Gillard, today Gillard herself was shoved aside when it became clear her party has no chance of winning the spring elections in September (remember the seasons are reversed there) with her as leader.  The new Prime Minister:   Kevin Rudd!!!

Several MPs there have quit in disgust and some Cabinet members are moving to the backbenches.

Still, this has the kind of drama that is of a long ago era in Canada and only recently passed away (finally) in the UK -- that only elected members (in this case, MPs and Senators) voted for their leader, and such leaders got regularly tossed out for all sorts of reasons.   Can you imagine if the Cons here, fed up by the control freak nature of PMS, decided to dump him between conventions?    Get real.

I personally favour what has evolved in most countries, the one member one vote system -- that is, all card carrying members choose the leader, not just those elected to office.   A leader should be reflective of the rank and file, not just the narrow interests who are in the caucus.    If he or she is to become the head of government I'd think there has to be a connection to the grassroots.

Especially when voting is compulsory as it is Down Under.

But regardless, this story actually gave me a smile today -- that democracy in whatever form is actually alive somewhere, and much more relevant than it seems to be in Canada these days.   And that every so often ordinary MPs understand they actually have their own brains and are not "trained seals" like their leaders expect them to be.

Something that should be the case for any parliamentary democracy.

No comments: