Julie Bishop knocks Malcolm Turnbull off popularity high in cabinet rankings - A new poll reveals the foreign minister is the most popular minister and Joe Hockey is the least popular. – “Julie Bishop has overtaken Malcolm Turnbull as the federal government’s highest-performing minister, while the budget has dragged Joe Hockey into last place, according to a survey ranking each cabinet member.McNair Ingenuity Research polled 1,004 voters late in August, just before the first anniversary of the Abbott government’s election victory. Participants were asked to rank each minister on a scale of 100 for excellent, 75 for good, 50 for average, 25 for poor or zero for terrible.
As the party faithful drift away, can Bill Shorten reinvent Labor? – “Bill Shorten, who seemed so impressive as a union leader and minister, is shaping up as the least inspiring opposition leader since Alexander Downer. … Shorten’s position is safe thanks largely to the complexities of choosing a party leader. But unless he can construct a new narrative and distance himself from the apparently moribund party machine that created him, he is unlikely to replace Abbott. Labor needs a leader who can simultaneously transform the party and create a new narrative of governance. Waiting for Abbott to self-destruct is not enough.”
Long View of History Includes Today – In ‘World Order,’ Henry Kissinger Sums Up His Philosophy – “In this book’s most compelling sections, Mr. Kissinger uses his realpolitik lens (with its emphasis on balance of power, linkage and triangular diplomacy) as a revealing prism by which to look at, say, the roots of World War I and the sources of conflict in the modern Middle East. He similarly uses his knowledge of various countries’ historical proclivities and their self-image over the centuries as a frame of reference for current developments like the Arab Spring and America’s increasingly ambivalent role on the world stage.”
Dreams on hold, Brazil’s ‘new middle class’ turns on Rousseff – “… a faltering economy and mounting frustration over poor public services are dimming the outlook for Brazil’s ‘new middle class.’ As that happens, leftist President Dilma Rousseff is watching a once-loyal base – and her chances of re-election next month – slip away. Her main rival, environmentalist Marina Silva, has surged in the polls and is favored to win a likely second-round runoff against Rousseff.”