Shock and Awe

Let me start by saying that I am in absolute shock!  I have just gotten off the phone with my mother – the one in Australia.  Anyway, we are doing our normal chat, and then suddenly this:

Mum: Andrew and Gina are doing well, and I think they will sort things out.
James: That’s good.  I hope it all works out for them both (sigh) So, Howard has finally called an election, it’s about time.
Mum: Yes, I think I’m going to be voting for him this time.
James: . . . . . . . .

Now let me explain something.  My mother has ALWAYS voted for the Labor Party.  The conservatives were an evil group of rich businessmen who had no interest in looking after women like my mother, not to mention the failing health system that she is battling with my sister (or at least so she has told me in the past).  I am UTTERLY stunned.  Gone is my sleepy, time for bed, state of mind.  Now I’m sitting here (after a perfectly fun evening) wondering what the hell is going on over there in that place called “home.”

I think my mother knew I was suprised … speechlessness comes so infrequently to me, and she may have picked up on this.  What is she thinking?  She claims that he is going to be provide a “safer” Australia.  How?!?!  By making it the fifty-second state of the US? (Side note: the fifty-first is the very populated state of ignorance.)  I am just dumbfounded.  We chatted about a few other things, but my mind was just ticking away with so many questions.

Anyway, I decided I was going to review the information on the two major parties sites.  The ALP (Labor) has their platform on the web in a variety of formats – all about making sure their message is available to everyone.  So then I looked at the Liberal Party.  Hmmm… a nice picture of John Howard with Aussie military personnel.  Ah there it is… teh Liberal Party platform.  Odd… it’s in picture format and only twelve pages long.  I’m confused.  Has my mother been so absorbed by the Herald-Sun tabloid news-style, that pictures speak to her louder than words?  The LP site has no platform, well certainly not as at 1:15 AM this morning.  It’s only 33 days till the election… maybe it will be uploaded soon.

Till then, I’ll just sit here scratching my head.