Friday, September 12, 2008

Costello not a leader

I have always had affection for Peter Costello. He is one of the Liberal Party's strongest parliamentary performers and an even-tempered, amiable sort of bloke. I think he would have made a competent Prime Minister though not outstanding. He faced the problem that most Liberal Party members felt gratitude and respect towards John Howard so that a challenge to Howard for the top job was always going to be difficult. But that challenge was what Costello needed to make to confirm that he had the needed ticker to be leader. He didn't and, indeed, waited until the eve of the launch of his book to confirm that he would not seek leadership of the party. It is disappointing. Nick Minchin's anger over the suggestion that the Party has been destabilised in the interests of a book promotion suggests a core discomfit. He 'doth protest too much'.

Malcolm Turnbull will shortly replace Brendan Nelson as Party leader and Turnbull is a good prospect to be a future Prime Minister. No problems here in the timing - Nelson took the flack that inevitably followed an election loss by a figurehead leader. Nelson deserves the Party's praise for doing that but Costello puts a somewhat tarnished seal on his leadership aspirations. Future talk of possible comebacks by Costello should be ignored.

5 comments:

jc said...

so, according to you, harry, Costello shouldn't have acted like gentleman but rather acted like a baby, possibly split the coalition and gone to the back bench like Keating.

Some people have high standards, harry.

Have you given it some thought that Costello possibly didn't want to destabilize the government and thought the party deserved better than internal squabbling?

And why is the feral Keating the gold standard in terms of how to act?

hc said...

Yes on this occasion I think a performance along Keating lines was appropriate. And that is a hard call given my affection for John Howard.

Costello can blame no-one other than himself.

jc said...

Harry:

Keating was a creep. Costello isn't like that.

Even though he may have resented Howard for not resigning, he still may have respected him and the party too much to conduct himself in the way the sewer mouth did. That's something we should respect rather than criticize.

Notice how none of Howard's senior people have not attacked Howard in since the loss. Despite the poison from the left, Howard was a respected leader among his senior guys. In other words he was a great manager.

Costello was a classy dude. He publicly admitted the deal he had with Howard and left it at that and continued doing his job.

i admire him.

whyisitso said...

Costello has the hide to criticize Barnaby Joyce for being disloyal and destabilizing. Pot, kettle, black.

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