Tuesday, November 15, 2005

union city blues

Whether he has a bit of a chip on his shoulder from having had parents who were small-business people or whether it's John Howard's intellectual vanity that motivates a desire to take down something so central to Labor’s historical roots, either way IR might well be Howard’s big mistake As Judith Brett argues* in the current Quarterly Essay, reform can’t just be bold, it also has to reassure people. And frankly I just don’t think John Howard’s succeeding in that department. No amount of cheery yellow ads showing bosses hugging workers will convince us that there’s no power differential between the two. Still, at least the Howard reforms have given Labor a way to clearly differentiate the parties. Be curious to see how the rallies go today.
(*Some more thoughts on Brett when I get the chance. Found it quite optimistic for Labor supporters.)