Tony Abbott, who denounced the government’s very mild pause on indexing the $150k threshold for access to Family Tax Payments as “class warfare”, has previously supported identical attacks on “middle class welfare“. Nothing surprising there: Abbott has shown himself absolutely willing to say whatever he thinks his audience wants to hear on the day. Unfortunately, exactly the same is true of Julia Gillard. Neither seems to think much before committing themselves to whatever thought bubble looks good on the day (cash for clunkers, tax levies for parental leave etc)
By comparison with these two, Wayne Swan and Joe Hockey, among other potential successors, look like stellar intellects and conviction politicians. Kevin Rudd and Malcolm Turnbull are in a whole different universe. As I’ve said before, the current contenders to rule Australia are living disproof of the adage that we get the government we deserve. We didn’t ask for Gillard, and the only alternative we were offered was Abbott. What a choice!