Nemesis provides depressing insight into what drives MPs. Hint. Not you.

After watching the second part of the ABC’s Nemesis documentary this week on the 10 years of the last Coalition government, it is easy to see why Australia is facing such grave policy challenges on so many fronts.

Because for a decade nothing really got done.

Instead, Australia was held hostage to the whims, selfishness and career ambitions of people such as Tony Abbott, Malcom Turnbull, Peter Dutton and Scott Morrison. This came on the back of seven years of Labor dysfunction when the nation endured the Kevin Rudd, Julia Gillard, Kevin Rudd soap opera.

So make that 16 years when the people running Australia became more concerned about either looking over their shoulder to see who was coming after them, or examining the exact spot between the shoulder blade in which to plant the blade.

That adds up to 16 wasted years for Australia. Sixteen years when not enough was done to address the challenges the country is now facing in everything from the cost-of-living crisis, to housing, to climate, to defence, to infrastructure, productivity, aged care, training young people in the skills we need, health, to poverty and the growing gap between rich and poor.

Instead, we have politicians more interested in power than policy. More interested in tearing down than building up. Nemesis displayed the lack of intellectual, ethical and moral quality of the people at the top of the political tree. These were not serious people looking for serious answers to serious questions.

Instead it was gang warfare. My gang is bigger than your gang. My mate is more popular than your mate.  

When the focus of politics is internal rather than external we all suffer. When the numbers that matter are leadership ballots and opinion polls rather than wages growth or pollution targets Australians will be left behind.

If everything is viewed through the prism of leadership and short-term hits to damage an opponent then the long-term is left to fend for itself. It all adds to the trivialization and dumbing down of politics as well. The inability of the Libs to produce a coherent response to the justified changes to the stage 3 tax cuts that give more money to middle Australia at the expense of the wealthy being the latest example. First they said they would oppose the changes because it was a blatant broken promise. Albanese was called the “liar in the Lodge’’ in what it no doubt thought was a moment of political brilliance. Then Dutton saw how popular the Albanese decision was and decided to back them after all. But, wait for it, make them even bigger.

Presumably, by their own definition, breaking their own election promise along the way. So, if Albanese is the Liar in the Lodge, then it makes sense that Dutton is the Deceiver from Dickson.

Not much progress on the reading front since last post.

Finished Le Carre’s Legacy of Spies which I thoroughly enjoyed. The idea of looking back on the story of The Spy Who Came in From the Cold through modern eyes was fascinating. Since then I have made a tentative start to Alasdair Gray’s Lanark. This is one I have started before and put aside. By the looks of it I made it to page 84 last time. Hopefully, I do better this time.

Still nothing in the Subaru’s CD player.

Continuing my recent Peter Temple revisit I listened to White Dog on Spotify. Again, have read this one before, but you really can’t get enough Jack Irish in your life.