We have the argument on education spending we needed 2 years ago, one week after announcement of cuts. In an op-ed, in a Sunday paper, that the mainstream media will almost certainly ignore.
Primacy and recency people. First media message, last media message is what is remembered. Ask people now what they know of the education spending cuts, and they’ll say backlash, independent schools, anti-Liberal philosophy and a whole lot more. Come election time that’ll be what the Coalition has to fight.
Mention of the belated Cusack piece. Guaranteed to be zero.
That the opinion piece was needed shows a failure to anticipate the response to the cuts, and a belated recognition that the Government needed to make a case to the public for the policy. Up front.
Instead we have a government offering defensive justifications of past actions rather than forward-looking explanations of a vision motivating future actions.
I’ve been saying it for years and banging on for the past two weeks on exactly this topic.
The appearance of this piece shows the government knows it got the strategic policy communications wrong.
To address that requires a change in mindset in the Coalition political class. I have no confidence that it will be forthcoming.