You’d think there was an election coming up….

Is it just me or is the political climate in Australia reaching new lows every day.  I have heard and read some appalling things from politicians in recent days (actually that’s been happening for months, but there’s a certain intensity to it all now), some things that make me wonder what planet… or what century… our politicians inhabit.  It certainly doesn’t seem like they are in the same stratosphere or time period as me.  And what is with the media (and a certain brand in particular) dictating to the public what we should be thinking and how we should be voting as front page headlines.  Impartial, balanced media I think not!

Having said all this I think most pollies are the same, they all (or the vast majority) put themselves up for such public positions for the right reasons.  They want to make our country, or part of it, a better place and have some idea how they think that should be done.  Whether or not I agree with those ideas or the ways they might be implemented, I believe their intentions are generally good.  In this way politicians are kind of like teachers, whether or not you agree with their style or methods the vast majority of teachers do the job because they want to make a difference to the lives of kids.  Some do this more successfully than others, just like politicians.

I also believe that in general and despite what their political opponents, the media and especially radio shock jocks say, most politicians don’t deliberately lie or mislead the public (there are, however, exceptions to this statement…. Howard’s children overboard scandal springs to mind immediately).  I do agree that there is a lot said and a lot promised in election campaigns perhaps without full costings or investigations to back up these promises.  But it does leave a sour taste in my mouth when I hear the label ‘Liar’ bandied about in reference to various politicians on either side of the spectrum.  I just don’t buy it.  Don’t we all make promises or commitments which prove more difficult to keep than we first thought.  I can’t tell you how many times I’ve promised to get tests marked and returned to a class by a certain date only to have to explain that it wasn’t possible despite my best intentions.  And if we’re going to accuse one political leader of being a ‘liar’ or breaking a promise I think the label should be applied to them all.  There are plenty of examples from just about every government Labor and Coalition alike.  Can we just get beyond that criticism and focus on what is happening, not what coulda, shoulda, woulda been.  Understand that circumstances change and so, therefore, do the policies any government can fulfill.

And as for all this stuff about the economy.  Am I the only one complete sick of the focus on deficit/surplus, whether we’re in the toilet or flying high economically and whose done good or done bad. And worse whether we can trust the public servants working in treasury.  They must be feeling like they’re professionalism is being questioned by the entire country… I think I know that feeling, something teachers deal with regularly.  Don’t most people understand that the economy is effected by far more than what happens on our own fair shores and that in a completely volatile global environment making predictions becomes just about impossible.  Give the poor buggers in Treasury a break, I say.

In all what I’m looking for from the rest of this election campaign (surely it’s nearly over already) is a discussion on policies that represent our modern and sophisticated society.  A recognition that we’re mostly intelligent beings who don’t need all this political talk dumbed down for us.  And for god’s sake make it all stop soon!

And…… rant over, happy voting!

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4 Responses to You’d think there was an election coming up….

  1. Mumof2Rs says:

    I am extremely dismayed by the announcement today that the Liberal Party will be preferencing against the Greens so that they cannot win a lower house seat. If this party wins the election then this tells me that the Liberal Party and its voters do not care one jot about the environment, the food we eat, or our children’s futures. In fact I am more than dismayed, I am disgusted.
    I don’t normally talk politics but I have been ranting today.

  2. Barbara Good says:

    Yes, that decision concerns me greatly too. I dislike the fact that the Liberal Party never accepted the government the Australian people voted for… there was a reason it was hung, because we’re sick of the two parties perhaps. I think all politicians have a responsibility to accept the voice of the people (ie their votes) and if that results in a minority government than it does. For them to say they will never accept another hung parliament is just ridiculous… it’s not their choice, it’s ours. The reason they’re not preferencing the Greens is to try to stop that happening by ensuring there are no Green MPs a party can form a partnership with… disgusting. I hope it backfires on them.

    • A says:

      Oh, yes. I’ll do my best not to swear here….
      That preferencing announcement riled me no end. Not only does it conflate a hung parliament with a lack of leadership (which are not the same thing) it is totally insulting to the public and what they voted for, as you suggest Barb. The thing is, a party’s preferences should, in theory, present the spectrum of most-alike to least-alike. For the Liberal party to fiddle with their presences in this way undermines our democratic processes and they’ve no business meddling with the outcomes of parliament in such a way for such an empty, non-issue reason.
      I’ve stopped watching the news, but what I am collecting is infuriating. The last few catch ups I’ve had with people have all begun with a shared burst of dismay and resignation, including with your sister.
      And I shall merely hint at the extent to which my skin crawls regarding the leader of the opposition. [shudder] (Hint: while I’m still in Melbourne my skin has completely crawled off in the general direction of NZ.) My insides, they churn.

      • Barbara Good says:

        It’s frightening to think just what might happen isn’t it. I’m just hoping that if the poll prove correct then my imaginings prove worse than reality…. maybe, please.

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