1 August 2012
MUSINGS OF WAYNE SWAN
I really do have an image problem. People see me as a stuffy politician with a perfect suit, perfect hair and I really do look and sound like a party-line-script-reading robot. Just boring old Wayne the Treasurer, that’s who I am.
And the other problem: just because I have taken on Rinehart, Palmer and Forrest, the Libs say I am playing the ‘class warfare card’ – and the media is buying it. But the fruits of economic growth should reach everyone. The gap between the rich and poor is widening. I hate this inequality, but Labor has lost its working class base. Talk about being caught between a rock and a hard place!
What can I do?
I need to convince the working class that I’m just like them, not boring, and that I really do care about them. Well, one truth out of three ain’t bad!
How can I sell that message? We in Labor couldn’t sell fish on Good Friday.
I’ll align myself with a real-live working class hero, then people will think I’m just like him. I could even pretend to be him – no, that’s going a bit too far – I’ll leave that for the cartoonists.
Who can I use?
The only Australian working class hero I can think of is Paul Hogan, but the Taxation Office wouldn’t like that.
The man who inspired my political values and the man whose music I still love – Bruce Springsteen – ‘The Boss’. His songs talk about economic inequality being the seeds of class warfare. He saw the signs of the decline of middle America long before the economists did. Bingo!
So, what I’ll do is get a video done and put it on YouTube. I’ll wear a T shirt and jeans and I’ll look like a real cool dude.
And for my speech at the John Button Memorial Lecture I’ll use ‘The Boss’ as my theme and I’ll run the video too.
That should stop all this ‘class warfare card’ crap, should win back the working class, and should make me look like a real human being after all. Problems solved! Trifecta!
Besides, Julia is on holidays so this is my chance to steal the limelight. The media is bound to give me great coverage.
This is going to do wonders for my image.