24 February 2010
Kevin Rudd isn't sacking Peter Garrett, but he clearly sidelined him today.
The Environment Minister, once a hero of the protest movement, remained holed up in his parliament office, too afraid to venture outside and talk to the insulation installers who'd come to Canberra to vent their anger.
But the Prime Minister took his medicine and ventured out. And it was a good thing too.
In shirt-sleeves and without any minders, Kevin Rudd listened to the complaints of those who've had to sack all their staff and are stuck with warehouses full of unwanted insulation.
He disarmed the angry mob by repeatedly telling them he "get's it". The message was clear: we stuffed up and we're sorry.
Later in parliament, the Prime Minister offered another $41 million to help keep insulation businesses afloat and retrain sacked workers.
The cost of cleaning up this insulation mess continues to grow.
But at least the PM showed some contrition and responsiveness today.
Kevin Rudd took on the opposition's censure motion while Peter Garrett sat watching in silence.
The Prime Minister has often been criticised for being a control freak and not giving his Ministers enough free reign.
But today he was right to seize back control from his hapless Minister and draw a line under the political scandal this has become.
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Deidre Rukavina, Newcastle (30 April 2010 10:10PM) wrote:
David...The PM faced the angry insulation installers! Well, what a magnificent act on his behalf,(the very least he could do), given his government put a policy in place that was not regulated (criminal, given men died)but where is the prime minister and Peter Garret on the accountablility ladder? (nowhere)... As Labour is GREAT at the speak not much to speak off in terms of credibility (Child care, hospitals,every child will have a computer, school rebuilds...yadda yadda yadda..he's cost us plenty Kevin 07 (more like Rudd the Dudd)...
Mary, Melbourne (16 March 2010 7:05PM) wrote:
I think it is tragic that these young men died during installing insulation but those people that were trying to make a quick buck are the one's resposible not the minister. They have a duty of care to their workers and this is being overlooked for cheap political points by Abbot and co. It happens every day in the workforce due to unsafe work practices. This was a good scheme but shonky dealers took advatage and should be held accountable. If it was my son or husband I would be going after the dealer not the goverment who has kept people in work during the GFC.
Jane, Ballarat (27 February 2010 10:16AM) wrote:
Give me a break!! This news source is a joke..an ALP apologist joke. The pathetic side motion of Garrett by KRudd( nothing DEmotive about it) as ‘seen to be doing something’....when it’s actually nothing that's being 'done'. Typical Labor deceit and spin….and done late on a Friday to dissipate in the media cycle over the w/e and take the heat off. Gutless Rudd/Labor are now 'gameplaying' with Rudd pretending to be all humble, apologetic and copping it on the chin...."lesson learnt - so lets move on and not talk of it again". Pfft. This is the insincere 'whatever it takes - tell em what they want to hear' formula they have used at State level....and it has worked for them. Labor True Deceivers = EPIC FAIL If people are sucked in by this tactic from Labor yet again they are nothing but fools.
Malcolm J Smith, Australia (25 February 2010 7:34AM) wrote:
Wow! What a brave thing for the PM to do. Face the consequences of his actions in this whole farce, but unlike the real world where we have to pay for our own mistakes he gets to bill the taxpayer yet again. Yes the minister is hapless and should resign, but he won't because then he could tell how far up the warnings really went. David you might think this is all good politics but it is not good policy, and there is a difference. And I don't like seeing my tax dollars spent fixing bad policy that was introduced because it was "good politics". Please follow the example of those kids from Q&A and start asking some hard questions.