Even the most trusting person could consider the marriage plans of first bloke Tim Mathieson as a confected and calculated attempt to distract the public from the political death roll of the Prime Minister.
So poor is the credibility of PM Gillard and so humiliating the response to her ‘typical Labor budget’ that a magnificent distraction was needed.
Enter sideshow Tim with his Sunday Mail marriage announcement.
It had all the hallmarks of an authentic and romantic proposal, with the exception that it didn’t involve the prospective bride. Unless, that is, the PM despatched the aforementioned suitor to dominate the weekend news cycle.
Yes, I know I am suspicious and some might say cynical, but what other conclusion can be drawn? We have a Prime Minister that is deeply unpopular, leading a hapless and dysfunctional government that is losing support after delivering the second largest budget deficit since World War II.
So poorly was the budget received that, rather than defend their fiscal decisions, the executive chose instead to launch pathetic and disingenuous attacks on Tony Abbott.
These were seen by an increasingly disheartened public as further evidence that the Gillard Government has no real plans for the nation’s future.
Such is the level of cynicism among the populace that there is now a very real sense that most thinking Australians have put any serious decisions on hold. Unfortunately, it seems the same is true of our government.
While her citizens are stuck in a seeming economic paralysis linked to doubts over the competency and future direction of their government, the government themselves are subject to the paralysis of simply having no idea.
So bereft of any vision for the future, Labor are restricted to responding to immediate problematic demands rather than laying a foundation for the future.
Last week saw a new low in desperation from Labor. Not only was a pressured Treasurer crushing glasses as easily as he announces $50 billion deficits, but the PM herself may have sent out sideshow Tim to dominate the airwaves.
Now I would hazard a guess that few members of the public would actually know much about the Prime Minister’s partner. Aside from his furious waving from the steps of the prime ministerial plane he would struggle to be recognised by most Australians. Some may also remember him from his presentation of a football jersey to Prince Charles whilst attending the recent royal wedding.
Yet despite these moments, the first bloke has not been deterred from wandering into the public eye to launch the mother of all distractions and pave the way for an attempt at an election winning wedding.
What else can a public that has been fed so much spin by successive state and federal Labor governments deduce?
Of course, this conclusion could be horribly misplaced and perhaps all men could learn an enduring lesson that the way to a woman’s heart is through the pages of the Sunday tabloids.
Perhaps the Labor Party knew nothing about Tim’s proclamation of an impending proposal before it appeared in the press. Who knows, it may have even come as news to Julia.
However, given the past practice of Labor and their obsession with dominating the media cycle to prevent more than a cursory examination of their many failings, we are entitled to harbour suspicions that even the most enduring of institutions is not above being used as a sideshow by a desperate Prime Minister.