I think it is more than a little amazing how chronically disinterested in this election people are.
Admittedly, my interest in politics is relatively new. Four years ago my political interest was in its infancy, and I can't profess that I had a huge interest in the election where Debnam was humiliated by Iemma. That said, I do remember chuckling most heartily at "More to do, but we're heading in the right direction."
My interest in politics was really ignited by observing JWH being unceremoniously dumped not only out of the lodge but also out of Bennelong. I almost went into meltdown with interest in the 2010 Federal Election and the ensuing drama.
I approached this 2011 NSW election more than a little excited. I was looking forward to reading about the parties brawling through the media, stories leaking, scandal, fusses over nothing, plus of course excitement and niggle on #NSWvotes. And maybe someone like Mark Latham to really stir things up.
Instead, the whole thing appears to be a bit of a squib. Frankly, no one seems very interested.
No one appears to be blogging very enthusiastically (except for those people who only blog to drum up support/rail against an ideology/piss people off). #NSWvotes is more than a little dull - the usual trolls doing what trolls do, people retweeting stuff journos have tweeted, and people asking Barry O'Farrell questions (many of which, to his credit, he or his staff answer).
The media seems to be, at best, disinterested. Reporting what is being said, but without any real enthusiasm or excitement. Anthony Green has, as usual, provided an absolute deluge of analysis and statistical information, but I often wonder if I'm the only one reading it.
Why is this? Could it be the fact that the coalition are now almost unbackable favourites to triumph ($1.02 on Centrebet, Labor $13.00)? I'm sure that's part of it.
Much like a sporting event, most people like it to at least be competitive. Labor have been sunk for so long that their loss seems not only inevitable - it seems like it has already happened, and all we're waiting for is the formality of an actual vote.
It may well be that this election is the kind of election that only the "purist" enjoys - the process itself has to entertain, because the "tension" over the result certainly won't.
On one level, I suppose this is a great shame for O'Farrell - as opposed to remembered as hero (in the same way that Rudd would be if people didn't think him an unbearable twat) it seems he will (at least for the moment) be the man who was in the right place at the right time to knock off a long expired Labor government.
He has copped a lot of flack for running a "small target" campaign, but one can't fault its effectiveness. I wrote previously (at ) about the way that all he needs to do is not give people a reason not to vote for him, and most people who aren't firmly part of the Labor or Green base would back the Coalition. Judging by the polls that strategy seems to be working very well.
Labor will no doubt say that it's not fair that a man who is "hiding" things (their words) could be elected, but all he's doing is (very effectively) taking advantage of Labor's weakness. And Labor has no one to blame for that but themselves.
Anyway. I'll be watching the ABC with considerable interest next saturday. I'll have all the Labor seats on a board and will closely cross them off as Labor are slaughtered. And if anyone wants to play with me, I'll pick a time for when Anthony Green calls it for the Coalition. I just hope I'll have someone to play with.