August 12, 2007

K got mail

1. Wesley of Love and Terrorism contests some of Emmy Hennings' claims:

    I disagree with some elements of Emmy Henning's short account of Mark Latham as a character who the conservative government was frightened of. On the contrary the government successfully exploited Latham's resentment. From the beginning of his leadership they knew that they could use it, and it's a significant reason why Latham's electoral performance was catastrophic for Labour in that that election ended in the government winning both houses of parliament. A famous television clip from his election expresses this. In it Latham emerges from a radio interview as his conservative opponent John Howard coincidentally waits outside the studio. Latham looms up to Howard very aggressively and overbearingly, while Howard stands smiling and indifferent to this aggression while the cameras lap it up. That expression of hot resentment versus cool indifference was indicative of the government's successful labeling of Latham as unpredictable and chauvinistic. In the end they were almost certainly correct. I think there can be a practical purpose for contexts in which individuals can understand their own class history because that's often necessary to transforming it, but politics will always be a world of means and ends in which the influences of personal histories are almost always rightfully marked as irresponsible.

This obviously connects with the 'chip on the shoulder' thing, the condemnation of which smugly assumes that working class people should be grateful for admission into the ruling class world rather than furious that they were excluded, and that so many others continue to be exploded.

2. Bat points out that Nina Simone's 'Sinnerman' 'is also the closing credits song to the recently released (and in my view sorely underrated) film Golden Door'.

Posted by mark at August 12, 2007 04:16 PM | TrackBack