Transcript: Kevin Rudd: The View from Down Under | May 14, 2019

A guest sits in The Agenda studio. He's in his late fifties, with side-parted white hair and a stubble. He's wearing glasses, a black suit, white shirt, and blue tie.

Steve says A DECADE AGO, IN HIS
ROLE AS THE 26TH PRIME MINISTER
OF AUSTRALIA, KEVIN RUDD LED HIS
COUNTRY THROUGH DIFFICULT TIMES:
THE GREAT RECESSION THAT CAME IN
THE WAKE OF THE 2008 FINANCIAL
CRISIS, MENDING RELATIONS WITH
INDIGENOUS PEOPLES, A RISING
CHINA, AND TACKLING CLIMATE CHANGE.

Steve appears on screen. He's slim, clean-shaven, in his fifties, with short curly brown hair. He's wearing a gray suit, white shirt, and checked blue tie.

A caption on screen reads "The view from down under. @spaikin, @theagenda."

Steve continues TODAY HE'S STILL DEEPLY ENGAGED
IN MANY OF THESE ISSUES AS
PRESIDENT OF THE ASIA SOCIETY
POLICY INSTITUTE.
AND KEVIN RUDD JOINS US NOW FOR
MORE ON HIS COUNTRY AND ITS
RELATIONS WITH THE REST OF THE
WORLD.
SO GOOD TO MEET YOU.

Kevin says GOOD TO BE HERE.

Steve says THANK YOU FOR COMING
IN.
I KNOW IN THE UNITED STATES WHEN
YOU'RE PRESIDENT YOU'RE
MR. PRESIDENT FOR LIFE.
BUT IN CANADA, IF YOU'RE NO
LONGER THE PRIME MINISTER,
YOU'RE JUST MR. WHOEVER.
WHAT IS IT IN AUSTRALIA?

Kevin says GOOD DAY, YOU.

[Laughter].

Steve says I'M NOT SURE I COULD
DO THAT.

Kevin says MUCH LESS POLITE THAN YOU
GUYS.
CERTAINLY NOT HELLO, GOOD
MORNING, MR. PRIME MINISTER.
WHICH I NOW LIVE IN NEW YORK,
WHICH IS WHERE I RUN THE POLICY
INSTITUTE, AND SO EVERY MORNING
I'M GREETED AS PRIME MINISTER.
IT JUST DRIVES ME NUTS, BECAUSE
WE JUST DON'T DO THAT BACK HOME.

Steve says YOU DON'T DO THAT.
WELL, WE DON'T DO THAT, SO
THAT'S ANOTHER THING WE ALL HAVE
IN COMMON.
I HATE LIKE HELL TO DO THIS, BUT
I WANT TO START WITH SOMETHING
THAT IS INCREDIBLY TRAGIC AND
TOPICAL, NAMELY THE 50 PEOPLE
WHO WERE SHOT IN THE MOSQUE IN
CHRISTCHURCH, NEW ZEALAND BACK
IN MARCH.
THE KILLER WAS APPARENTLY BORN
AND RAISED IN AUSTRALIA, AND I
WANT TO GET YOUR SENSE ABOUT
WHETHER THE POLITICAL CLIMATE IN
YOUR COUNTRY RIGHT NOW, WHETHER
YOU THINK THAT PLAYED ANY ROLE
IN WHATEVER INSANITY MOTIVATED
HIM TO DO WHAT HE DID.

The caption changes to "Kevin Rudd. Former Prime Minister of Australia."
Then, it changes again to "One of their own in Christchurch."

Kevin says I THINK IT'S MORE LIKELY TO
BE THIS GLOBAL CULTURE OF WHAT'S
CALLED IN THE UNITED STATES AT
LEAST THE NEW ALLS RIGHT TO
CULTURE, FAR RIGHT CULTURE,
WHITE SUPREMACIST CULTURE.
IT'S AN ON-LINE ECOSYSTEM.
YOU DON'T HAVE TO DIG VERY FAR
IN THE INTERNET WORLD TO
DISCOVER WHERE THESE PEOPLE HANG
OUT.
AND THIS GUY, WHO SHALL REMAIN
NAMELESS, BECAUSE IT'S IMPORTANT
TO CONTINUE TO DENY HIM THE
SATISFACTION OF HAVING BEEN...

Steve says AGREED.

Kevin says THE KILLER RESPONSIBLE FOR
SLAUGHTERING SO MANY INNOCENT
MUSLIMS AT PRAYER IN
CHRISTCHURCH IN NEW ZEALAND, AND
THIS GUY WAS JUST A PART OF THAT
ECOSYSTEM.
ON THE BOARD OF POLITICS IN
AUSTRALIA, I MEAN, MY VIEW IS
THAT YOU HAVE, TO SOME EXTENT,
FROM THE POLITICAL RIGHT IN
AUSTRALIA, FROM TIME TO TIME THE
DEMONIZATION OF ASYLUM SEEKERS,
MUSLIMS, BUT TO SAY THAT THAT'S
UNIQUELY AUSTRALIAN I THINK IS
WRONG.
OF COURSE MY REACTION AS A
FORMER AUSTRALIAN PRIME MINISTER
WHEN I HEAR THAT SOMEONE LIKE
THIS HAS BEEN ENGAGED IN THE
SLAUGHTERING OF THE INNOCENT, IT
MAKES ME SICK.
ABSOLUTELY SICK.

Steve says NO, IT'S NOT UNIQUELY
AUSTRALIAN.
WE HAVE HAD OUR MOMENTS WITH IT
IN CANADA AT A MOSQUE IN QUEBEC
A YEAR OR MORE AGO.
OBVIOUSLY IT'S ALL OVER THE
UNITED STATES.
THE POLITICAL PARTY IN
AUSTRALIA, ONE NATION, I THINK
IT'S FAIR TO SAY WON ITS LARGEST
LEVEL OF SUPPORT AT THE FEDERAL
LEVEL IN THE LAST ELECTION.
DOES THEIR BRAND OF WHITE
NATIONALISM LOOK ANY DIFFERENT
FROM ANY OTHER COUNTRIES IN THE
WORLD AT THE MOMENT?

The caption changes to "Kevin Rudd. Asia Society Policy Institute."

Kevin says NO, IT'S BASICALLY A TYPE,
AND WE SEE IT IN MOST OF OUR
WESTERN DEMOCRACIES.
ONE NATION'S BEEN AROUND FOR
ABOUT 20 YEARS IN AUSTRALIA, AND
ITS VOTER SUPPORT GOES UP AND
DOWN, UP AND DOWN.
BUT IT'S A RACIST PARTY.
NO TWO WAYS ABOUT IT.
IT'S A POLITICAL PARTY WHICH
LOATHES AND DETESTS ME WITH A
PASSION FOR EVERYTHING I STAND
FOR IN DEFENCE OF
MULTICULTURALISM AND TOLERANCE
AND WELCOMING OUR MUSLIM
BROTHERS AND SISTERS TO OUR
COUNTRY, ET CETERA.
BUT THEY ARE PART OF THE
POLITICAL LANDSCAPE.
THEY ARE NOT A MAJOR POLITICAL
PARTY.
THEY ARE A MINOR POLITICAL
PARTY.
WE HAVE ELECTIONS ON AT PRESENT.
FINGERS CROSSED THEY REMAIN A
VERY MINOR PARTY IN THE FUTURE.

Steve says FDR USED TO SAY OF HIS
ENEMIES I WELCOME THEIR HATE.
DO YOU FEEL THE SAME WAY ABOUT
THEM?

The caption changes to "Kevin Rudd, @MrKRudd."

Kevin says WELL CERTAINLY IN THEIR
ATTITUDE TO ME.
I'VE ALWAYS SEEN THAT AS A
VALIDATION OF EVERYTHING I
BELIEVE IN, WHICH IS ARE THEY
TOLERANT, INCLUSIVE,
MULTICULTURAL AUSTRALIA.
AND ONE WHICH IS AT REST AND
CALM WITH ITS FUTURE IN THE
WIDER ASIA-PACIFIC REGION,
RATHER THAN SOME ROMP RIGHT WING
REACTIONARY PARTY PLAYING TO THE
POLITICS OF RACIAL DIVISION.

Steve says DO YOU THINK YOU HAVE
TO HAVE A RACIST TO VOTE FOR
THAT PARTY?

Kevin says NO, BECAUSE THEY ARE QUITE
SEDUCTIVE AT THE MOMENT.
THEY GO ABOUT THE POLITICS OF
IT.
THEY THEMSELVES AND THEIR
INTERNAL SCRIPT ARE UNABASHEDLY
RACIST, BUT NO, THEY APPEAL TO A
GROUP AND A CONSTITUENCY, AND
YOU SEE THAT SAME APPEAL IN
ELEMENTS OF TRUMP'S AMERICA AS
WELL.
CANADA I CAN COMMENT LESS
COGENTLY.

Steve says WE'LL KNOW BETTER
ABOUT THAT IN OCTOBER WHEN WE
HAVE OUR NEXT FEDERAL ELECTION.
YOU WROTE RECENTLY THAT YOU FELT
THAT YOUR COUNTRY COULD SOON BE
ON THE VERGE OF WHAT YOU CALL A
NATIONAL DECLINE.
WHAT DID YOU MEAN BY THAT?

The caption changes to "The face of Australia."

Kevin says WELL, THE BETTER LINE IS WE
IN AUSTRALIA NEED TO BE VERY
MINDFUL OF THE CHALLENGES OF
REMAINING A PART OF, A VIBRANT
PART OF THE EMERGING GLOBAL
ECONOMY WHICH WILL BE DRIVEN BY
THE HIGH TECHNOLOGIES OF THE
FUTURE.
SO FOR COUNTRIES LIKE AUSTRALIA,
WHICH AS YOU KNOW IS
GEOGRAPHICALLY RELATIVELY
REMOTE, BEING WIRED TO THE
FUTURE DRIVERS OF GLOBAL
ECONOMIC GROWTH IS CRITICAL.
ONE OF THE THINGS WE'VE SOUGHT
TO DO IN AUSTRALIA TO REDRESS
THAT PROBLEM IS BUILD A
HIGH-SPEED NATIONAL BROADBAND
NETWORK THAT'S BEEN INTERRUPTED
BY CONSERVATIVE POLITICS IN
AUSTRALIA.
AND THE INFLUENCE OF THE MURDOCH
MEDIA.
BUT THE BOTTOM LINE IS WE'VE
SOUGHT TO BECOME CONNECTED, AND
THERE IS A GOOD TECH SECTOR IN
AUSTRALIA, LIKE THERE IS IN
TORONTO, LIKE THERE IS IN
ELSEWHERE IN CANADA, BUT UNLESS
WE, FRANKLY, WORK TWICE AS HARD
AS THE BIG PLAYERS, THAT'S THE
AMERICANS AND NOW INCREASINGLY
THE CHINESE, THEN IT'S A DANGER
OUR COUNTRIES GET LEFT BEHIND.

The caption changes to "Watch us anytime: tvo.org, Twitter: @theagenda, Facebook Live."

Steve says HOW DO YOU MAKE SURE
THAT DOESN'T HAPPEN?

Kevin says I THINK THERE'S TWO THINGS
THAT BELONG TO THE POLICY TOOL
KIT FOR GOVERNMENTS, OR
LIKE-MINDED GOVERNMENTS AROUND
THE WORLD.
ONE IS TO MAKE SURE THAT THE
HIGH TECH INDUSTRIES OF THE
FUTURE, YOU HAVE BASIC
FACILITATING INFRASTRUCTURE,
WHICH IS NOT JUST HIGH-SPEED
BROADBAND, BUT ALSO THAT YOU'VE
GOT THE BEST QUALITY EDUCATIONAL
AND MEDICAL RESEARCH INSTITUTES
THAT YOU CAN POSSIBLY HAVE.
WE HAD THOSE IN AUSTRALIA.
YOU'VE GOT THEM IN CANADA.
BUT PUTTING THEM TOGETHER IN
CRITICAL MASS IS IMPORTANT AS
WELL.
THE OTHER HALF OF IT IS AN
ACTIVE VENTURE CAPITAL AND
BROADER CAPITAL MARKETS INDUSTRY
WHICH TAKES INNOVATION, BRINGS
IT TO MARKET AND TAKES IT TO THE
WORLD.
IN OUR PART OF THE WORLD, A BIT
LIKE CANADA WHERE WE'VE ALWAYS
HAD THIS STRONG STEADY FLOW OF
GROWTH FROM OUR MINING AND
RESOURCES SECTOR AND OUR ENERGY
SECTOR, SOMETIMES IT'S TAKEN
AWAY THE SHARPNESS OF THE
COMPETITIVE EDGE OR WHAT WE NEED
TO DELIVER TO THE INDUSTRIES TO
THE NEW ECONOMY OF THE FUTURE.

Steve says I WANT TO CALL UPON
YOUR EXPERTISE ON CHINA, BEING A
CHINA SCHOLAR, BEING A PERSON
WHO SPEAKS FLUENT MANDARIN, TO
ASK YOU HOW YOU THINK THE WEST
OUGHT TO PERCEIVE CHINA'S GLOBAL
AMBITIONS TODAY.

The caption changes to "Keeping an eye on the neighbours."

Kevin says I THINK THEY NEED TO BE BOUND
TO THAT, TO BE QUITE HONEST.
XI PING'S CHINA IS QUITE
DIFFERENT FROM THE OLD CHINA.
HE IS PUSHING THE MARGINS.
CHINA IS RISING.
THE WORLD'S SECOND-LARGEST
ECONOMY IN A DECADE'S TIME,
PERHAPS THE LARGEST USING MARKET
EXCHANGE RATES AS THE MEASURE.
AND SO ONE LEVEL IT'S NATURAL
AND NORMAL FOR CHINA NOT SIMPLY
TO PASSIVELY BE LOOKING AT THE
INTERNATIONAL ORDER AND SAYING
WE'LL SIMPLY ACCEPT THAT AS IT
IS BECAUSE WE CHINESE ARE
RETURNING TO A PLACE OF
HISTORICAL GREATNESS IN THE
AFFAIRS OF THE WORLD.

Steve says WHICH THEY HAVE HAD
MORE OFTEN THAN THEY HAVE NOT.

Kevin says WELL, THAT'S TRUE.
I MEAN, WHEN CHINA BECOMES ONCE
AGAIN THE LARGEST ECONOMY IN THE
WORLD, WHICH I THINK IS
PROBABLE, IT WILL BE THE FIRST
TIME SINCE GEORGE III WAS ON THE
THRONE OF ENGLAND THAT WE HAD A
NON-ENGLISH SPEAKING NON-WESTERN
NON-DEMOCRATIC STATE AS THE
WORLD'S LARGEST ECONOMY.
SO WE'RE ALL IN FOR A BIT OF A
SURPRISE.
I THINK THAT'S JUST AN
UNDERLYING REALITY.
BUT ON THE OTHER HAND, FOR THOSE
OF US LIKE CANADA, LIKE
AUSTRALIA, WE'RE LIBERAL
DEMOCRACIES.
WE STAND FOR A SET OF VALUES
WHICH ANCHORED IN THE
CONVENTIONS OF THE UNIVERSAL
DECLARATION OF HUMAN RIGHTS, THE
INTERNATIONAL COVENANT ON CIVIL
AND POLITICAL RIGHTS, WE'RE
GOING TO HAVE DIFFERENT VIEWS TO
THE CHINESE ABOUT OUR DOMESTIC
POLITICAL SYSTEMS.
ALSO GOING TO DIFFER WITH THE
CHINESE ON THE QUESTION OF OUR
ALLIANCE STRUCTURE WITH THE
UNITED STATES.
NEITHER OF THOSE ARRANGEMENTS
ARE EVER GOING TO CHANGE, AS FAR
AS CANADA AND AUSTRALIA ARE
CONCERNED.
BUT IN DEALING WITH OUR CHINESE
FRIENDS, WE'VE GOT TO BE EQUALLY
ROBUST ABOUT THOSE MATTERS AND
NOT AS IT WERE SHRINK FROM IT.
BUT THE BALANCE SIZE AND EFFECT
IS WITHIN THOSE CONSTRAINTS WE
SHOULD BE PROSECUTING THE
MAXIMUM MUTUALLY BENEFICIAL
ECONOMIC RELATIONSHIPS POSSIBLE.
THAT'S BEEN OUR STRATEGY IN
AUSTRALIA.
IT'S NEVER A SMOOTH TRAJECTORY.
THERE'S ALWAYS HUGE BUMPS IN THE
ROAD IN THIS, BUT I THINK IF YOU
NAVIGATE ALONG THOSE LINES YOU
CAN MANAGE A BALANCED
RELATIONSHIP.

Steve says I TAKE YOUR POINT ON
THAT, BUT YOU'RE OBVIOUSLY A LOT
CLOSER TO THEM THAN WE ARE.
DO YOU SEE THEM AS A NATIONAL
SECURITY THREAT?

Kevin says IN AUSTRALIA, OUR VIEW OF
CHINA'S RISE IS THAT IF CHINA
CONTINUES TO REMAIN WITHIN THE
FRAMEWORK OF THE INTERNATIONAL
WORLD SPACE SYSTEM POST-45 THEN
CHINA IS NOT A THREAT.
BUT IT'S AN OPEN QUESTION AS TO
WHERE THE CHINESE PEOPLE'S
LIBERATION ARMY, NAVY, THE
AIRPORTS, ITS MARITIME
STRATEGIES IN SOUTHEAST ASIA,
TAKE THAT COUNTRY INTO THE
FUTURE.
I THINK THE JURY, THEREFORE, IS
OUT ON THAT QUESTION.
THE DANGER IS THAT WE SLIDE FROM
WHERE WE CURRENTLY ARE IN
U.S.-CHINA RELATIONS, FOR
EXAMPLE, ON A PERIOD OF
LONG-TERM STRATEGIC ENGAGEMENT
BETWEEN THOSE TWO GREAT AND
POWERFUL COUNTRIES INTO A PERIOD
OF WHAT THE AMERICANS NOW CALL
STRATEGIC COMPETITION, AND MY
CONCERN FOR THIRD COUNTRIES LIKE
CANADA AND AUSTRALIA IS WE DON'T
HAVE TO NAVIGATE AN EMERGING NEW
COLD WAR BETWEEN CHINA AND THE
UNITED STATES.
THAT THE THIRD COUNTRIES
PRESENTS ENORMOUS DILEMMAS.

Steve says TO MEET THAT
CHALLENGE, DO YOU THINK WE NEED
TO RAMP UP THIS ORGANIZATION
THEY CALL CANZUK?
ARE YOU BEHIND THAT?

Kevin says I'VE ALWAYS BEEN BEHIND THE
COLLABORATION AMONG THE FIVE
EYES, INCLUDING THE AMERICANS.
AND WE'RE ALL ALLIES OF THE
UNITED STATES, EVEN DURING THE
AMERICANS' CRAZIER MOMENTS WE'RE
ALLIES OF THE UNITED STATES.
AND FROM TIME TO TIME WE PART
COMPANY.
I DON'T THINK CANADA OR MY
PARTY, THE AUSTRALIAN LABOUR
PARTY, SUPPORTED AMERICA'S
INTERVENTION IN VIETNAM, AND
CERTAINLY ON THE QUESTION OF THE
IRAQ WAR, MY PARTY UNDER, AGAIN,
THE AUSTRALIAN LABOUR PARTY, DID
NOT SUPPORT THAT.
BUT WITHIN THOSE CONSTRAINTS OF
OUR ABILITY TO AGREE OR DISAGREE
WITH THE AMERICANS AND
MAINTAINING A GENERAL ALIGNED
SOLIDARITY IS IMPORTANT BOTH
GLOBALLY AND REGIONALLY.
THERE'S A REASON FOR THAT.
WE'VE LEARNED OVER 100 YEARS TO
COLLABORATE VERY CLOSELY.
WE TRUST EACH OTHER, AND I THINK
YOU CANNOT AUTOMATICALLY
REPLICATE THAT TRUST IN THE
FUTURE.
IT'S BETTER TO CONTINUE TO
DEPLOY IT IN OUR COLLECTIVE
INTERESTS.

Steve says SO DO WE HAVE, IN YOUR
VIEW, ADEQUATE SHARED VALUES
AMONG THOSE FOUR COUNTRIES I
JUST MENTIONED, OUR COMMONWEALTH
HERITAGE, TO PURSUE SOMETHING
MORE ROBUST ON THE INTERNATIONAL STAGE?

Kevin says WELL, IT DEPENDS WHAT YOU'RE
TALKING ABOUT.
WE HAVE THIS AMORPHOUS
INSTITUTION OTHERWISE CALLED THE
COMMONWEALTH, AND I'M ALL FOR,
YOU KNOW, INTERNATIONAL
COOPERATION THROUGH INSTITUTIONS
OF ANY FORM, BUT IT'S THE UNITED
NATIONS, THE COMMONWEALTH OR THE
INTERNATIONAL FOLDING CHAIRS
SOCIETY.
THESE ARE ALL GOOD THINGS.
BUT IF YOU'RE... THE THRUST OF
YOUR QUESTION IS ON SECURITY
COLLABORATION, AND THEN THESE
FOUR COUNTRIES, INCLUDING THE
AMERICANS, I THINK HAVE A
HISTORY OF COLLABORATION OVER
THE LAST HUNDRED YEARS, AND IT
SHOULD PROVIDE A GOOD BASIS FOR
FUTURE COOPERATION AS WELL.

Steve says LET'S TALK ABOUT
RECONCILIATION.
ONE OF THE HALLMARKS OF YOUR
TIME AS PRIME MINISTER WAS AN
APOLOGY TO AUSTRALIA'S
ABORIGINAL PEOPLES.
YOUR CANADIAN CONTEMPORARY AT
THE SAME TIME, STEPHEN HARPER,
DID THE SAME THING HERE IN
CANADA.
WE THEN LAUNCHED A TRUTH AND
RECONCILIATION COMMISSION
PROCESS WHICH I THINK BY ALL
ACCOUNTS WAS AN EXTREMELY
VALUABLE THING FOR US TO HAVE
UNDERTAKEN.
WHAT CAN YOU TELL US FROM YOUR
EXPERIENCE ABOUT WHAT IT TAKES
TO MAKE RECONCILIATION REAL?

The caption changes to "Reaching reconciliation."

Kevin says TWO THINGS, IN MY JUDGMENT.
ONE IS IT'S NECESSARY FOR THE
FORMAL INSTITUTIONS OF THE
PARLIAMENT AND THE STATE TO
ACCEPT AND ARTICULATE THAT WE'VE
WRONGED OUR INDIGENOUS PEOPLES.
AS YOU KNOW, THAT'S QUITE A HARD
THRESHOLD TO CROSS FOR MANY
WHITE FOLKS, BUT UNLESS YOU DO
THAT, YOU CAN'T GET ANYWHERE.
I SORT OF DESCRIBE THAT AS SORT
OF, AS IT WERE, PERMISSION TO
CROSS THE BRIDGE OF
RECONCILIATION.
IT'S A BRIDGE, BY THE WAY, WHICH
OUR AMERICAN COUSINS NEED TO
EMBRACE THEMSELVES.
FOR ME, I FIND IT PUZZLING THAT
HERE WE ARE IN 2019 AND THERE
HAS BEEN NO NATIONAL RESOLUTION
OF THE UNITED STATES CONGRESS
APOLOGIZING TO NATIVE AMERICANS,
APOLOGIZING TO AFRICAN
AMERICANS, GIVEN THE APPALLING
HISTORY OF SLAVERY.
BUT IN OUR CASE, SUCH SYMBOLIC
ACTS ARE ONLY HALF THE EQUATION,
BUT AN IMPORTANT PART.
THE OTHER HALF IS LET'S CALL IT
PRACTICAL RECONCILIATION.
SO WHEN I APOLOGIZED TO
INDIGENOUS AUSTRALIANS, WE
ESTABLISHED A 5 BILLION DOLLAR PROGRAM
TO CLOSE THE GAP BETWEEN
INDIGENOUS AND NON-INDIGENOUS
AUSTRALIANS IN HEALTH AND
EDUCATION, BUT ALSO IN
EMPLOYMENT AND IN HOUSING.
AND ESTABLISHED A SYSTEM WHEREBY
EVERY AUSTRALIAN PRIME MINISTER
IS REQUIRED EVERY 12 MONTHS, ON
THE ANNIVERSARY OF THE APOLOGY,
TO DELIVER A REPORT ON SUCCESS
AND FAILURE.
SO WE'VE GOT I WOULD SAY AS MUCH
SUCCESS AS WE HAVE FAILURE IN
THE INTERVENING TEN YEARS SINCE
I DELIVERED THAT APOLOGY, BUT
IT'S BETTER THAN WHERE WE WERE.

Steve says HAVE YOUR SUCCESSORS
ADHERED TO THAT ANNUAL STATE OF AFFAIRS?

Kevin says THEY HAVE CERTAINLY FELT
MORALLY OBLIGED TO DELIVER A
REPORT, WITH VARYING DEGREES OF
ENTHUSIASM ON THE PART OF MY
CONSERVATIVE SUCCESSORS.
AND CERTAINLY WHAT THE
CONSERVATIVES HAVE DONE IS SEEK
TO PULL MONEY OUT OF THESE
PROGRAMS, AND YOU CAN SEE THE
IMPACT OF THAT IN SOME OF THESE
STALLING PERFORMANCE AGAINST THE
CLOSING THE GAP INDICATORS, AND
WE LEFT CLEAR NUMERICAL
INDICATORS OF WHERE WE EXPECT
THE GAP TO BE CLOSED.
FOR EXAMPLE, IN INFANT
MORTALITY, IN ACCESS TO EARLY
CHILDHOOD EDUCATION, HIGH SCHOOL
GRADUATION, HOUSING, EMPLOYMENT,
ET CETERA.
BUT YOU KNOW SOMETHING, NUMBERS
ARE IMPORTANT.
IF YOU CAN'T COUNT IT, MY
EXPERIENCE IN BUSINESS HAS BEEN
IT USUALLY DOESN'T HAPPEN.
SOCIAL JUSTICE NEEDS TO BE
COUNTED AS WELL.

Steve says LET ME COME A BIT FULL
CIRCLE WITH YOU HERE.
THE FIRST THING YOU SAID TO ME
WAS GOOD DAY, MATE WHICH OF
COURSE IS WHAT WE ALWAYS EXPECT
AUSTRALIANS TO SAY TO US UPON
FIRST CONTACT.
SO I WANT TO ASK YOU A BIT ABOUT
THIS FABULOUS CULTURE OF YOURS.
WHAT IS MATESHIP?

The caption changes to "G'day mate."

Kevin says WHAT'S MATESHIP?
OH, I THINK IT'S A TERM WHICH
FIRST HAD TO BE USED A LOT IN
AUSTRALIA IN THE FIRST WORLD
WAR.
AS YOU KNOW, CANADIAN TROOPS,
AUSTRALIAN TROOPS, HUNDREDS OF
THOUSANDS OF THEM ON THE WESTERN
FRONT, SO I THINK THIS BROUGHT
TOGETHER AUSTRALIANS FROM ALL
CLASSES.
AND AS A RESULT, MATESHIP BECAME
CONSOLIDATED AS PART OF THE
AUSTRALIAN NATIONAL YOUTH CORPS.
MATESHIP IS NOT SIMPLY, AS IT
WERE, SYNONYMOUS WITH
FRIENDSHIP, THOUGH IT INCLUDES
FRIENDSHIP.
MATESHIP MEANS I'LL STICK WITH
YOU, AND MATESHIP ALSO MEANS
EVEN WHEN YOU SCREW UP I'LL
STICK WITH YOU.
BUT I PROBABLY OFTEN TELL YOU
THAT YOU SCREWED UP.

Steve says WELL, IN CANADA, WHEN
SOMEBODY HANDS SOMEBODY A
PITCHER OF BEER, WE... YOU KNOW,
WE SWILL IT OR WE... WHAT'S THE
WORD I'M LOOKING FOR NOW?
CHUG IT.
YEAH, THAT'S IT, CHUG A LUG,
CHUG A LUG, THAT'S IT.
YOU DON'T DO THAT, APPARENTLY,
IN AUSTRALIA.
AND I WANT TO SHOW YOU A CLIP OF
SOMEBODY I SUSPECT YOU KNOW
WELL.
THIS IS ONE OF YOUR
PREDECESSORS, BOB HAWK, WHO AT
82 YEARS OLD AT A CRICKET MATCH,
SOMEONE HANDED HIM A BEER, AND
HERE'S WHAT HE DID.
SHELDON, PLEASE.

A clip plays on screen with the caption "January 4, 2012."
In the clip, shaky cellphone footage shows as Bob Hawk walks up the steps in a crowded stadium.

[Crowd Noise]

A man hands him a plastic cup full of beer and Bob chugs it.

[Cheers and Applause]

The clip ends.

Steve says THAT'S NOT BAD.
I GATHER YOU GUYS CALL THAT
SCULLING?

Kevin says SCULLING, YEAH.

Steve says SCULLING THE BEER WHEN
YOU CHUG A LUG LIKE THAT.

Kevin says AND THERE'S A LITTLE SONG
CALLED DOWN DOWN DOWN DOWN DOWN.

Steve says IS THAT A PREREQUISITE
FOR OFFICE, BEING ABLE TO DO THAT?

Kevin says NO, YOU SEE, I DON'T THINK I
COULD DO THAT.
I DON'T MIND A COLD BEER ON A
HOT DAY, BUT HAWKY HOLDS THE
GUINNESS BOOK OF RECORDS FOR
DOWNING A YARD GLASS.
AND HE STILL HOLDS THE RECORD.
IT'S QUITE EXTRAORDINARY.
BUT NO, I WOULD FAIL AGAINST
THOSE MEASURES.

Steve says SOME POLITICAL
OBSERVERS, AND ALL THESE THINGS
ARE FRIVOLOUS, EXCEPT THEY
ACTUALLY IN SOME CASES HAVE MORE
SIGNIFICANCE THAN YOU THINK,
THAT HIS ABILITY TO DO THAT
CONNECTS HIM TO THE AVERAGE
AUSTRALIAN IN A WAY THAT, YOU
KNOW, HELPED RESULT IN POLITICAL
SUCCESS FOR HIM.
DO YOU BUY THAT?

Kevin says YEAH, I THINK HAWKY WAS AN
ENORMOUSLY POPULAR AUSTRALIAN
POLITICIAN.
AND HIS ABILITY TO DOWN A BEER
ON A COLD DAY AND A HOT DAY WAS
CERTAINLY PART OF HOW AUSTRALIAN
WARMED TO HIM.
BUT YOU KNOW, ALL OF US IN THE
POLITICAL PROCESS BECOME KNOCKED
AROUND THE EDGES A BIT BY THE
HAZARDS OF POLITICAL LIFE, AND
THAT HAPPENED TO HAWKY AS WELL.

Steve says DO YOU FINALLY JUST
WANT TO HAZARD A GUESS AS TO HOW
THE NEXT ELECTIONS WILL TURN OUT?

Kevin says NO, I WON'T, BECAUSE I LIVE
IN NEW YORK AND I'VE BEEN THERE
FOR THE LAST THREE OR FOUR YEARS
RUNNING THE ASIA SOCIETY POLICY
INSTITUTE, AND THE BOTTOM LINE
IS AS YOU KNOW YOU DON'T QUITE
HAVE THE FEEL FOR WHAT'S GOING
ON LOCALLY WHEN YOU'RE NOT
THERE. ON THE OPINION POLLS,
WE, THE LABOUR PARTY, HAVE BEEN
CONSTANTLY AHEAD IN THE POLLS
FOR TWO YEARS.
ON THE LAW OF PROBABILITIES WE
SHOULD, THEREFORE, PREVAIL.
BUT ELECTIONS ARE FUNNY THINGS.

The caption changes to "Producer: Harrison Lowman, @harrisonlowman."

Steve says THEY ARE FUNNY THINGS,
AREN'T THEY? YES, THEY ARE.
THAT IS A GREAT QUOTE.
KEVIN RUDD, IT'S BEEN AWFULLY
GOOD FOR YOU TO SPEND SO MUCH
TIME WITH US HERE AT TVO
TONIGHT. WE THANK YOU VERY MUCH.
YOU ARE THE 26TH PRIME MINISTER
OF AUSTRALIA AND THE PRESIDENT
OF THE ASIA SOCIETY POLICY
INSTITUTE.
GOOD DAY, MATE.

The caption changes to "Subscribe to The Agenda Podcast: tvo.org/theagenda."

Kevin says GOOD TO BE WITH YOU.

Watch: Kevin Rudd: The View from Down Under