Sunday 19 Aug 2018 | 06:16 | SYDNEY
Sunday 19 Aug 2018 | 06:16 | SYDNEY

Rudd keeps his head while all about him lose theirs


Sam Roggeveen


10 October 2008 08:52

Sometimes, mind-numbing prolixity can be a virtue. Prime Minister Rudd spent almost all of his 7:30 Report interview last night using his usual mix of cliche and long-windedness to hose down host Kerry O'Brien's barely concealed panic about the financial crisis. For every O'Brien reference to 'depressions', 'tidal waves' and 'huge onslaughts', the PM parried skillfully with 'objective facts', 'substantial measures' and 'the confidence equation'.

Then, right at the end, the iron fist in the terry toweling glove:

KERRY O'BRIEN: What is your biggest fear for Australia, right now, what is your nightmare for Australia?

KEVIN RUDD: Kerry, my responsibility to Australia is to speak objectively about the problems we face, and equally objectively, about the strengths we have. People running around throwing their hands in the air talking about nightmares is not leadership. That's commentary, and I am not in the business of commentary. The nation requires plain talking, straight talking, about the problems we face and the strengths we've got. And that's what I intend to keep doing. (My emphasis.)