Allan Takes Aim Blog

Priests and politicians: is there a difference?

Posted on: 17 March 2013

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Priests and politicians: is there a difference?

This week, two events occurred: the election in Vatican City of an Argentine Cardinal to be Chief Priest of the Roman Catholic Church (The Pope) and Canberra’s 100th birthday. Of these two events which do you think will be remembered, if remembered at all, as being of importance? Possibly neither, though the Papal election is the most likely.

No doubt some people will be upset at pairing the Vatican and Canberra but the fact is that environment is much the same as Vatican City is as much a political city as Canberra. That said perhaps the comparison should be between the Pope and Australia’s Prime Minister whose official home is Canberra.

It could be said that both the Pope and Australian Prime Minister reached reach their positions in the same way. The Pope was elected leader of the Roman Catholic Church by a conclave of equals and the PM by a conclave of Labor politicians. The only difference: the result of the Pope’s election is not known before the papal conclave starts whereas the result of the political conclave is known before it starts.

As to the philosophy preached by the two leaders, the Pope advocates caring for the poor, tolerance, humanity, love of God, truth, honesty, integrity and kindness et al, a philosophy set 2,000 years ago, that will get you to heaven. That the philosophy still stands is due to the fact that, apart from claiming to be the Son Of God, as a good politician, Jesus Christ its creator of the philosophy used a cabinet of 12 apostles (who today would be called priests) to promote it.

By example these priests did their best to convert people to the philosophy that later became known as Christianity. And that they were successful is clear as today 1.2 billion people still follow the philosophy. (A brief personal statement: Although I believe in parts of this philosophy but not in God I am Agnostic. But neither do I hold any brief for any other religious group such as Islam, Hinduism et al or any particular political philosophy)

Odd as it seems there is little difference between the basic philosophy of most Christian religions and Australia’s Labor Party. Christian religions promise us entrance to a mystical and glorious heaven when we die if we adhere to their philosophes, while Labor promises heaven on earth (Utopia) if we follow its philosophy. Unfortunately for both, neither have evidence to back their claim.

Despite this lack of evidence the Australian Labor party is still promising Utopia. Unfortunately for Labor, Utopia seems anchored fast in dreamland. One would not need to be a member of Mensa to see the reason why and also see why more and more people in Australia now disbelieve most Labor politicians. The reason: not only does party philosophy change overnight but, at the whim of the PM and some cabinet colleagues and for reasons of expedience, it can change hourly so leaving some cabinet and non- cabinet MPs bewildered.

A glaring example of the latter is the proposed media reform. Demanding that this media reform bill be made law is the height of arrogance. And while voters might admire firm leaders they dislike like arrogant leaders particularly when they seem to have stopped listening and stumble from one disastrous policy to another such as PM Gillard and her cabinet have done.

Labor’s memory of these mistakes has conveniently vanished into the mists of time where it will bump into many other Labor mistakes, the list of which is too long to publish. What will not be Included in that list is the legislation that has increased taxes and keeps on increasing the cost of living thus creating misery not Utopia.

For the benefit of the Prime Minister Gillard let me paraphrase the old saying, marry in haste and repent at leisure into: become PM in haste and repent at leisure. Unfortunately, Prime Minister, come September you will find out that after making mistakes repentance always comes too late. At the same time you will find that when push comes to shove and despite their fine promises of loyalty, those who helped you make those mistakes will desert you to minimise any damage to their ambitions.

In ending this piece and looking for a succinct message to summarise the image of the PM what came to mind was not that she is Australia’s first female Prime Minister but that she seems to have qualities of Emperor Nero of whom it was said: he fiddled while Rome Burned. The other Nero similarities she displays are her extravagance and the execution of people perceived as enemies.

The extravagances are so well known they speak for themselves. Hopefully the politically executed will also be able speak for themselves because while the physical execution of political enemies has now largely died out in the western world, executing perceived political enemies is still carried out as many in the Australian Labor Party and, for that matter, the Liberal Party can testify to.


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