As everyone knows, the great truth about Australian elections is that governments lose elections, oppositions don't need to win them.
It's not always true. Sometimes (1990, 1993 perhaps 1998, 2004), stinky governments get re-elected because there is enough doubt about the readiness of the Opposition and its Leader for government.
And certainly lots of people still have lots of doubts about Tony Abbott and many of his front bench colleagues.
Personally, I still find it difficult to imagine a world in which Tony Abbott is the prime minister and Joe Hockey is its Treasurer.
Warren Buffet used to say only invest in companies that can be run profitably by idiots because soone or later they will be.
We can only hope that's true for countries as well.
But when a government is dead, it is dead. Think 1975 and 1996.
Predicting the downfall of Gillard and her government is hardly novel as this handy list compiled by Ashley Leahy (@AshleyLeahy):
In fact, the Gillard Government seemed to be making some headway in the second half of last year. The carbon tax had come into effect and, despite the predictions of talkback loops and their fan base in the federal Opposition, the sun was still coming up each day.
What's more the Australian share market has been growing strongly for the past seven months, hardly what you'd expect if the carbon tax was going to bring business to its knees.
While ALP MPs must have started the year with some hope in their hearts, the last few weeks have done much to return the Government to where it was before the carbon tax came into effect.
Some of this is not the Gillard Government's fault, it's just inevitable given the circumstances it finds itself in. But time and again they seem to make a bad situation worse.
For a start, much of the media coverage, and criticism, of Julia Gillard is sexist.
The majority of editors and political commentators are still old, white males, and they are responding like people always do when outsiders get inside the tent. And, of couse, there are camp followers willing to bear some of the load as well.
Second, let's be frank here, the ALP caucus, and particularly in the Senate and on the front bench, is not a patch on what it was during the early days of the Hawke Government.
The talent that joined the ALP inspired by Whitlam has pretty much gone.
Of course, the other side of the chamber is just as diminished, if not more so. Perhaps it's just something to do with the times we live in.
Perhaps, politics is just more boring these days now that the big ideological conflicts over class and inequality are now things that no aspirational politician would dare to focus on.
Boring politics don't appeal to the best talent in the community.
Third, the Gillard Government is being tarnished by some endemic problems in the union movement (HSU) and the corruption on show in NSW.
The ALP's alliance with the Greens in Tasmania seems to be damaging the Gillard Government in that state.
Some of this will be offset by the lacklustre of conservative state governments along the easter seaboard, but not enough to undo the damage of perceptions of endemic corruption inside the ALP in some parts of the ALP and the union movement.
Fourth, and perhaps more destructive than anything else, is the Rudd problem.
The ALP's structure doesn't throw up too much talent these days. Hasn't for decades. If the ALP had to rely on the unions and "the base" it would probably never get elected.
To revive its fortunes the ALP has for sometime looked a bit outside the envelope for some leadership talent - Whitlam, Dunstan, Wran and Hawke come readily to mind.
In recent times some of the outsider plays have not worked so well.
Crean and Beazley wasted a few years for the ALP and then they tried Latham.
Latham lost the 2004 election and blew up.
Then they went for Rudd, who won the 2007 election and then pretty much pissed everyone off.
Going back to Gillard was supposed to be safer.
But Rudd is still there, and it damages the ALP everyday.
Fifth, longevity is the burden that inevitably overwhelms all governments.
The ALP has been there long enough for some big chickens to come home to roost, eg the mining tax.
And long enough for some of its senior members (like Evans and Roxon) to start drifting off to other things.
The electorate turned against Howard in his last term. The leadership issue, the one sided unfairness of Workchoices and the appeal of the new man Kevin Rudd all meant that his government was doomed from the get-go in 2007.
Political commentators, like their cousins in sports, like the contests to be close, preferably 'too close to call', and unpredictable with an 'upset very much on the cards'.
You'll remember on the day of the Presidential election last November that commentators here were opining about the closeness of the contest some even tipped a Romney upset.
In the last NSW election just about every commentator seemed to think Kenneally ran a great campaign, didn't seem to effect the outcome one jot. The ALP got pretty much the same share of the vote as her predecessor was getting in the polls when the Obeid forces destroyed his premiership.
Just about the only surprising federal election outcome in recent memory was 1993.
Mostly, it is obvious from a long way out.
It can look more open than it really is because polls bounce around. Often the polls tighten towards the end, giving the illusion of a change in momentum.
I suspect the ALP lost the 2013 election on the day it announced the climate tax in February 2011. The political pressure had been on Tony Abbott up to that point, and then the polls turned against the ALP and a landside win for the LNP became the new 'default' in poll gazing.
From that moment, it's been uphill for the Gillard Government. Whatever you think of the merits of carbon pricing (and I think it is inevitable in a world moving in that direction).
That 'broken promise' along with the intractable politics of the asylum seeker issue and the embarrasing low returns of the mining tax so far has damaged Gillard and her government enormously.
The Gillard Government has a good economic story to sell, it just doesn't seem to have anyone capable of prosecuting it effectively.
Then there's lots of silly mistakes like Swan's surplus pamphlets. What were they thinking?
But that's what tends to happen when you're playing catch-up politics, and we can expect to see more high-risk stuff from the ALP in the next few months. They have to do something.
And, no doubt, there will be some Opposition stuff-ups and stumbles along the way to raise the hopes of ALP supporters and to have commentators talking about possible upsets.
I just don't believe that voters change their minds too often. And I think once they have made a firm judgement they see everything that happens through the lens of that judgement. That's why shifting perceptions is hard.
I think enough voters have decided the ALP has had 6 years in office, more than enough, and it's time to give the other lot a go.
If you're an LNP supporter I guess it will be pretty exciting, for the rest of us it might be less painful to switch-off and wait for the results. Whatever you do, don't buy the close contest guff that's bound to come flowing in.