The problem that both parties now face is that having raised the asylum seeker “problem” for internal party reasons, the external conditions for solving it are no more favourable than they were in 2007-2008.

Latham is articulating a search for a new relationship of politics to society, based not on its representation, but on intervention on a degraded basis. You have been warned.

What is more important is that Gillard and Labor, detached as they (like the Coalition) are, can be seen to relate to someone in society.

It is the loss of that social base that Labor is struggling to adapt to, not some problem of ideology.

Making an enemy of a party on which your supporters agree on practically every issue is at best an empty gesture and at worst will make the Greens the anti-establishment party they clearly crave but don’t deserve.

Politics is becoming more cyclical, but only because the nature of politics is changing from what it was in the 20th century.

Some journalists might at least make at least some effort to keep the hypocrisy under check.

How do you change racial provisions in the Constitution when the entire infrastructure of land rights is based on it?

This Parliament has an in-built disconnect with the electorate that is no more likely to be resolved at the next election as it was at the last.

This upside-down thinking of social reality is symptomatic of a political party in decline.

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