K Rudd's lessons for life
Kevin Rudd, during his time as PM, being welcomed by students from Gordon Primary School in the ACT. Photo: Andrew Taylor
While Julia Gillard is selling her education crusade, Kevin Rudd is doing his own round of schools, reminding people of his record — and musing on what to do when you run into a brick wall.
All the time, he's been keeping the Twitter world abreast of where he's going.
''Spoke to 1400 lads at Iona College in Brisbane this morning on faith, values and politics,'' he tweeted yesterday.
Kevin Rudd Photo: Glenn Hunt
Then, directing his followers to a YouTube video, ''Have a listen to what the kids at one of the schools in the Tweed have to say about their new school facilities.''
And today: ''Spent some time early this morning with the teachers and little ones at the Stones Corner Children's Develop.''
''As the [Rudd] government said way back in 2008, early childhood education to ensure our kids are wired for learning.''
''Fantastic morning at St Ita's at Dutton Park. St Ita's has used Oz Govt school funding [initiated by the Rudd government] to build a fantastic new library.''
''Also spoke to years 6 & 7 at St Ita's about China, the importance of family and most other things under the sun. Great kids.''
One thing has been missing from the stream of tweets so far - any reference to the Gonski report on school funding, which the Prime Minister and her government have now formally embraced.
When he spoke at Iona College yesterday about various things under the sun, Mr Rudd delivered a homily to the many young people who say they would like to go into politics one day and ask him ''what should I do?''
''My answer to them is as follows.
''Tell me, young man, young woman, what do you believe in and why?
''And the second question I ask them: well, if you know what you believe in and why, then ask yourself this question - what can I do about it?
''And the third question I put to them is: okay, what are you now going to do about it? Yourself, in your life, where are you?''
Too often, Mr Rudd lamented, ''I run into folk in political life, of all political parties including my own, who can't answer that question properly. And it's a very basic question.
''If you've looked at my own political career, it's been full of a few ups, and a few downs — mainly downs in recent times,'' he observed, drawing some laughs.
''Have you ever been - not too much laughter up the back there - a member of your college football team when you've come in first, and it's premiers in one season, and you've dropped to the bottom of the table the next season?
''Life's like that. I can hear a few murmurs of agreement. Life's like that.
''It's not just one even smooth trajectory to the top of whatever you're doing. So when you run into brick walls in life, things that get in your road, things that go wrong, things that happen which you're not planning on, the really important thing is to go back to those basics of 'what do I believe in and why? and therefore, what should I do about it?'''