More Morrison corporate welfare

Where do we start when considering the $100 billion JobKeeper scheme?

Should we focus on the opaque nature of the scheme in which less than 3% – $3 billion of JobKeeper payments have been disclosed in public company accounts and there is no way of finding out who got what and how much?

Is it the fact that JobKeeper has enabled Solly Lew and others to boost profits and pay massive bonuses to senior staff? As Solly also stiffed his landlords should we be surprised? read more

US polarisation decades in the making

If you think US polarisation is ending soon – think again. While there is frightening evidence of current US polarisation longer term research shows just how deep-seated it is.

While it is astonishing that between 70% and 80% of Republican voters believe the recent Presidential election was rigged this is not an outlier product of the Trump years but more a reflection of steadily developing attitudes over some decades. read more

Ongoing Australian Trumpism influence predictions probably overblown

Kishor Napier-Raman posed a question about the Australian political future when he wrote (crikey 15 January 2021) that: “The question is no longer whether Trumpian politics are on the rise in Australia, it’s now a question of how severe the damage will be.”

The reality is that this is the wrong question and that the right questions are about what is distinctive about Australian populism and right wing politics; how much Australian political problems are home-grown; and, our continuing delusions about our relationship with the US. read more

Paranoid politics is back – again

Paranoid politics always seem to be with us in some form or other. It has ebbed and flowed for centuries but in the past year it has seemed more like a flood than a flow culminating in the insurrectionist storming of the US Capitol.

How successful the spread has been is exemplified by the attitudes to the Capitol storming. A YouGov survey of 1,397 American voters for The Economist found that “more Republicans said they supported the actions of the pro-Trump extremists than opposed them (45% to 43% respectively). In contrast, nearly every Democrat polled, and two out of three independents, said they opposed the rampage.” read more

Three word slogans- Part 2

One of the most successful three word slogans in recent-ish political history– the Thatcher Opposition’s Labour Isn’t Working – almost didn’t get seen by the client.

Tim Bell, once one of the UK’s most successful PR people until his career ended in scandal, claimed to have created Labour Isn’t Working for Maggie Thatcher for the campaign against Jim Callaghan’s Labor Government. read more

The year of three word slogans

If Scott Morrison is to be remembered for more than knifing Malcolm Turnbull, the 2019 election, bushfires, corruption and climate denial it will be his propensity to relentlessly  deploy two or three word slogans.

It’s not that he actually is Scotty from marketing or great marketer himself – as shown by his experiences at the New Zealand and Australian Tourism boards – but that he employs people who dream up variations on a traditional and effective marketing device. read more

Will he really run in 2024?

Will he run in 2024? Will he set up a new Trump TV channel? Will he continue to dominate the Republican Party and Tweet it into loyal submission?

Any of the above possibilities are being regularly canvassed in the US. And after his 2016 win and the relative closeness of 2020 it would be unwise to make any firm prediction about what he might do and how successful he might be. read more

Bah humbugs

Given how we are all looking forward to an almost normal Christmas it’s a safe bet that we will hear two things before and during it: bah humbug and that Oliver Cromwell banned Christmas.

You can also double down on bah humbug opportunities by downloading, as a Christmas present, a free game which bah humbugs climate change deniers. read more

Disillusioned Aussie youth diss democracy

Young Australians now rank among the groups most dissatisfied with democracy in the world –better than Venezuela and the US but worse than Ghana and Peru.

The finding comes from an October 2020 report, Youth and Satisfaction with Democracy, by the Bennett Institute for Public Policy at the University of Cambridge which forms part of the work of the Centre for the Future of Democracy. read more

A blueprint for action on integrity

Since the Liberal-National Part Government came to power Australia’s ranking in Transparency International’s (TI) global corruption surveys has fallen.

Australia has slid 8 points in the global corruption rankings since 2012 and the 2019 report (the 2020 is coming soon and likely to be worse) put Australia in 12th place, scoring 77 points on the 100-point scale. read more

An insider’s view of how public relations really works