Friday, 1 May 2009

You've gotta laugh - creating a Rudd mythology

Last night's Q&A continued to show that this show is good for a laugh, and has a totally different style from much of the dreary garbage that passes for pacey debate between politicians.
Much of the action comes from the almost random throwing together of diverse politicians which last night included the Nationals Barnaby Joyce(left) and Labor's Peter Garrett. There was also Green's Sarah Hansen-Young, and Liberal Pru Goward. Along with black playwright, director and dramaturg Wesley Enoch  the mix was right for many good exchanges.
One thing that interests me is the way that the right has obviously been advised to create a Rudd mythology. This has many aspects. One of them is that he is too smart for his own good...and by implication ours. And that he talks incessantly.
So I had to laugh when the "never backward in coming forward" Senator Joyce accused Garrett of taking lessons from the PM and creating a "wall of sound"  ie. talk, talk talk and never allowing discussion. 
I don't think this is true, I think this is the mythology that they are trying to create.
What was farcical was that Joyce had himself talked down almost everyone on the panel throughout the show, Ms Goward, ever perceptive and articulate, was getting quite annoyed by the end. The main "wall of sound" was coming from Barnaby Beagle  himself.
He also added to the creation of the Garrett mythology ("what has happened to Peter Garrett activist Rock star?")  by jokingly, persistingly and embarrasingly interrupting the Minister "OOOh where's Peter Garrett, where's Garret...he's disappeared."
As I say to my children, funny once not funny twice!
In the end this sort of perception-creating politics is not about  truth, it is about creating perception. And the two are not necessarily the same. They are more about manipulating the voter.
I suppose it happens on both sides; Turnbull is maligned by his opponents (as Andrew Lloyd Webber says about Cameron Mackintosh..."isn't he rich...richer than me" (You tube here))...while Ruddy is just as rich. The politics of perception and mal-image is not helpful

No comments: