SPÖ is hurting 

The SPÖ, inspite of everything the main opposition in this country, and the strongest party nationwide according to opinion polls, is in an unbelievably bad shape. Let's recap the events:

  1. Literally for years, the impending new economic program was hyped and promised to reflect the new beginning of the party after its ejection from government in 2000

  2. Economic spokesman Matznetter was built up as one of the key figures of the party, and given the task to oversee the development of the new economic program

  3. Over the last days, Matznetter disclosed the key elements of the new program in several interviews and press conferences

  4. This was orchestrated by opinion pieces by senior figures of the party outlining the new economic ideology (cf. yesterday's post)

  5. However, the initial political and public reaction to the program was largely negative, the program was seen as a tax-raising program

  6. Within a day, Gusenbauer, the head of the party, relativizes the contents of the program, and effectively cancels it by saying that major tax changes are taboo

  7. Today (another day later), even Matznetter dissociates himself from the key elements [DE] of the program - it is now apparently to be considered dead in the water

What next? Exit Matznetter, and start the preparation of a new economic program from scratch? Exit Gusenbauer, and the second tier represented by Matznetter and Erich Haider takes over? These were supposed to be Gusenbauer's men! Once again, the economic policy of SPÖ is reduced to dust. Yesterday I exaggerated when I wrote that 'few voters' will accept such a deal - plenty will (there's enough reason to be fed up with the current government), but is a party that does not manage to formulate its view on how to run the economy ready to take over the stewardship of the country?


I haven't been a regular at your site for long, but I'm always amazed at your output! Where does that massive amount of time come from you obviously need to craft your in-depth analyses of Austrian politics? I know that my site, for example, is nothing short of a diary-dump, but even when my goal is to write something resembling sense, it takes me ages. Confess, you are spending time at work devising your entries, are you not?


No, it takes me only five minutes a day, it's all a matter of practice, as numerous bloggers have written before me. Thou shalt never ask. Btw, there are people who write at least five times as much every day, for example Norman Geras at normblog. I don't READ them for lack of time.

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