It came as no surprise to me when I woke up this Sunday to see that Rudd has just called a general election for 7 September, he is clearly hoping to exploit the misinformed fears and prejudices of an electorate who have been led to believe that asylum seekers and immigrants are the root cause of all of Australia's social and economic problems.
Australia as a backpacking destination is so popular and talked about it has almost become a cliché, something to roll your eyes at when somebody reveals it as the destination of choice for their backpacking trip. It no longer holds the cool card that it used to, with the likes of India and Thailand stealing a march on our commonwealth friends.
It would be an outright lie if I said I didn't care who wins the Ashes. I wear a Team Cook t-shirt, not Team Clarke. But I certainly don't want to see a 5-0 whitewash of the Aussies. A close fought series, a taster of which we had at Trent Bridge throughout the first Test, should be what every cricket fan craves.
Australia (forgive the ridiculous obviousness of this statement) is hot! YES Sunshine makes us happy. Alcohol dependency, prescription drug use, mental health problems, are all far more concentrated the higher above the equator you go. Northern European countries that get the least light have highest problem levels, while the sunny equator sees a very small occurrence comparatively. It seems we humans, like flowers, need sun light to grow.
Both sides have taken a gamble, albeit on players at opposite ends of their careers. Alastair Cook will be looking to lead from the front, and continue the remarkable form he showed in the 2010/11 series... The Aussies have bumped Shane Watson - who averages 48 in Ashes matches, 13 more than his overall average - back up to open, mostly due to a lack of other candidates.