ADELAIDE - The demise of Australia’s Morrison government hopefully spells the end of nine long years of inertia, incompetence and corruption.
The incoming Albanese government inherits a sea of troubles: unprecedented public cynicism about politics; a degraded Federal public service; an economy about to be smitten by inflation; mountainous debt and fragile asset bubbles; an incredibly destructive European war; and a Chinese economy teetering on the edge of disaster.
This is a grim outlook indeed.
Despite this, there is a clear public expectation that the Albanese government will restore something resembling competent and honest administration.
This will be delivered by the creation of a powerful and independent corruption and integrity commission which will help ensure that corrupt politicians will never again with impunity raid the public purse for party political purposes.
Also, the Albanese government will restore dignity and constitutional respect to Australia’s First Nations people – “the oldest, living continuous culture in the world,” as Albanese stated.
He has committed his government to implementing the Uluru Statement which will for the first time ensure an Indigenous voice is enshrined in the Constitution.
This will have huge symbolic and practical significance for Indigenous Australians and represent a much belated acknowledgement of the country's First Nations.
In relation to our Pacific Islands neighbours, especially Papua New Guinea, incoming foreign minister Penny Wong will have the task of resetting regional relationships.
It will be achieved by massively increasing diplomatic and development aid efforts and for Australia to work alongside the mostly small but strategically significant neighbouring countries to build democratic resilience and a relationship both equal and generous.
There are many more issues to address: the existential threat of climate change; reinstituting an effective and independent public service; better addressing continuing waves of infectious disease; reversing eroding living standards of millions of Australians; and much beyond these.
Overall, an Albanese government will be hard pressed on many fronts.
It will take an immense amount of intellect, energy and courage to overcome the domestic legacy of nearly a decade of conservative ineptitude while simultaneously managing the fallout of the many global problems Australia confronts.