April 26, 2008 | 11:46 pm
There are more books, but fewer readers. This parallels an extraordinary debate in Australia with the recent election win of the politically liberal Australian Labor Party. Many among the liberal media are claiming they can speak at last. But who is listening?
When Clinton's presidency ended, there was debate about who would be president involving law courts, tally rooms, hanging chads and vanity of a scale Nixon eschewed. Clinton joked "The American people have spoken, but it will take us a while to work out what they said."
The joke Clinton made, made light of the anger many felt, wrongly believing that a swindle was in progress. To this day, there are many who believe something wrong had happened. Similarly in Australia, the previous success of the former PM, John Howard, had led his critics to much self pity. So that one journalist recently commented that he was apparently unable to have a conversation until Kevin Rudd liberated him and his friends last November.
The facts speak for themselves, and it is now that debate has been stifled. A meeting of 1000 left wingers met to discuss Australia's future, and remarkably managed to advocate the new government's agenda or raising taxes and paying friends extortionate amounts of money. Children were allowed to air their fears.
As social conservative columnist Andrew Bolt notes "And finally, do you not find it bizarre that you, in the name of debate, criticise the few prepared to have it? Do you not blush to attack a few defenders of true debate as people who allegedly “are telling us that they, and only they, knew what is best for this country”, while going on to praise a stage-managed gathering and hand-picked like-minders who are advertised by their puppetmaster as the “best and the brightest”, drawing up plans for the rest of us?"
"You attack what you claim to defend, and betray what you claim to honor. You seek no conversation, only the mute acceptance of the mass to the chatter of your elite."
Bolt supports the Australian Labor Party. But he doesn't have to like it.