Back in February of 2007 four-term Australian Prime Minister John Howard, leader of Australia's "liberal" party (a misnomer since four terms of John Howard's leadership saw the party strongly embrace social conservatism) and a strong ally and supporter of President Bush, said al-Qaeda was praying for a Barack Obama win in the 2008 U.S. Presidential election.
Today Australian voters said they don't want John Howard's failed leadership anymore, and kicked this Bush butt-kisser out of office.
Prime Minister John Howard of Australia suffered a comprehensive defeat today, with a coalition led by his Liberal Party losing its majority in parliament. [...]
The attempts by Mr. Howard's coalition to stress their economic record failed to impress voters. The Australian economy has had 17 years of continuous growth, in latter years driven by Chinese demand for Australian iron ore and coal, and he had warned voters that a Labor victory would endanger the country's future prosperity.
But despite the coalition campaign, there was little distance between the two parties on economic policy, and the defining characteristics came down to the personalities of the leaders and Labor's promise to readdress broad concerns about the environment, health and education. Mr. Howard, 68, was running for a record fifth term in office, but many voters said they were ready for a change.
Kevin Rudd, the new Prime Minister, has promised to sign the Kyoto Protocol on global warming immediately and withdraw Australia's combat troops from Iraq quickly. Australians have voted positively for a referendum of change, tired of the failed policies and empty rhetoric of the old regime which -- as was so aptly demonstrated in Howard's attack on Obama -- seeks to divide the world and foster conflict instead of resolution.
Howard's specific attack against Obama back in February, 2007 read like this:
In a strongly worded foray into US politics today, Mr Howard said an Obama victory in the presidential election would be disastrous for the war on terrorism.
"I think he's wrong. I think that will just encourage those who want to completely destabilise and destroy Iraq, and create chaos and a victory for the terrorists to hang on and hope for an Obama victory," Mr Howard said on Channel 9.
PM Howard clearly demonstrated his leadership failures in his support of Bush and attack on Barack, and Australians made a choice for change and denied Howard's re-election in a move that reflects the same frustration expressed by Americans 'from sea to shining sea.'
There simply is no room in the world for the failed strategies of conservatives like Bush and Howard, and with this election we're seeing signs that voters are waking up to that and making a difference in the voting booth.
The need for change and new directions is a world-wide imperative, and here's hoping the wave of change that began yesterday with John Howard's ouster in Australia reaches our shores 12 months from now.
UPDATE: Prime Minister Rudd is moving quickly on his promises.
The day after sweeping to power in general elections, Rudd went straight into work mode, holding meetings with government officials about the mechanics of signing the Kyoto Protocol on cutting greenhouse gas emissions. [...]
Britain, New Zealand and Indonesia noted that Rudd's election would boost international efforts to address climate change - ousted Prime Minister John Howard had refused to sign the Kyoto pact.
Malaysia's leader said Rudd's plan to pull Australia's 550 combat troops from Iraq would also improve the country's international standing, the Malaysian national news agency Bernama reported.
The world will rejoice with the end of the conservatives' reign in our country. It's a shame we have to wait another year to show the world that we realize the mistakes we made in putting and keeping Republicans in power here in the U.S.
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