As is to demonstrate Ayn Rand's point that you can't force a man to think, Prime Minister Kevin Rudd's ThinkFest 2008 has drawn to a close with commentator Piers Akerman declaring, "If there was an independent thought voiced in opposition to the generally anodyne motherhood statements, it went unheard"; Melbourne mother Kate Hands saying, "Most of the suggestions were obvious and had already been done in the past"; and Tim Blair judging this the summit’s best idea:
"Make death a better experience"
Must have been a good show. Meanwhile luvvie Cate Blanchett "set the audience nodding in approval when she stated her belief in ‘a long and meaningful relationship between arts and government’." Story here from the sycophantic ABC. Sounds like if you'd endorsed the idea of ‘a long and meaningful relationship between anything and government' you'd have this handpicked audience nodding in agreement, and probably awarding extra marks for originality. This was after all, as Prodos describes it, "a Summit of Fashionable Fascism." And as Tim Blair notes,
"Each of the summit’s 10 groups have until three o’clock this afternoon to identify their three ideas, including one that costs nothing to implement." Imagine the panic if they’d been asked to come up with ideas that made money.
Entertaining commentary here by Tim Blair, here and here by Andrew Bolt, and this definitive report by Annabell Crabb, who described the weekend's GabFest as "Vatican II, with Kevin Rudd playing the role of God."