Allan Takes Aim Blog

From political pantomime to political tragedy?

Posted on: 25 June 2013


 

My latest blog is always available at: https://donallan.wordpress.com. To make direct contact e-mail me at: dca@netspeed.com.au

 

From political pantomime to political tragedy?

When you have a government in which everyone thinks they are more capable of leading the nation than the person they elected as Leader, then you have a parliament in trouble. At the moment it seems Australia’s Labor Government fits this description.

Unfortunately to most people, Plato, a philosopher in Classical Greece 2,400 years ago, who  was also a mathematician, student of Socrates, writer of philosophical dialogues, and founder of the Academy in Athens, the first institution of higher learning in the Western world, is unknown. But clearly he was a man before his time as evidenced by his saying: “One of the penalties for refusing to participate in politics is that you end up being governed by your inferiors.

That this saying describes what took place in Australia when apathetic voters entrusted Government of the nation to two consecutive and inadequate Labor Governments although it must be said say the same thing happened under non Labor Governments.

Contrary to received political wisdom, the apathy does not lie entirely with young voters. It can also be sheeted home to older voters because for many of them voting has become a matter of habit rather than thought. Even those who don’t vote out of habit, only vote for policies they feel will affect them. And, having heard it all before, few believe the hyperbole dished up by politicians that the policies they promote as secure them and the future for generations yet to come. What they are promoting is their own security.

The fact is that because most have heard it all before they know that while some politicians may well be interested in the future many have become strong believers in the saying tomorrow never comes and in any case their future will be considerably shorter than that of most politicians. I say so as an older voter cynical about politics and politicians.

My cynicism has increased as the finale of the current political pantomime approaches. On reflection however, no longer is it a political pantomime but more a political tragedy that we ourselves, the young, the tween ages and the older ages created by handing not just our future but our present to a handful of selfish  and untrustworthy politicians.

As this is an opinion site I won’t waste readers’ time by reiterating the same arguments that are being made ad nauseum on radio, television, newspapers and in the inappropriately named ‘social media’ which attracts some current politicians like moths to a flame about what is happening in Parliament.

In common with those who wannabe political moths, the latter are seduced by the thought that with as few as 140 words and spaces they can present irresistible arguments that will not be consumed in the searing flame of public opinion but guarantee their place in the next federal parliament. Unfortunately, some will be successful.

However, as the fight for roles in Federal Parliament heats up, and if Tony Abbott, the third actor wins the star role following the public auditions of 14th September (some people might label that a political tragedy), what will the future be for Juila Gillard and Kevin Rudd?

While they won’t play roles in government, the Julia and Kev sideshow could keep voters entertained for some time.

A final comment. Voters will have much to think about between now and 14th September. If Julia Gillard leads Labor to the election and Kevin Rudd remains – perhaps he could be Shadow Minister for Destabilisation – they must weigh up carefully who to vote for. In light of the recent past if they make the wrong decision, Australia could become a country where Democracy has been captured by politicians for their own use.

Comment welcome.

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3 Responses to "From political pantomime to political tragedy?"

Social marketing provides a platform for politicians to show a personal side to voters, and reach constituents directly. Whoever takes full advantage of this will be in good stead to win the next UK election.

One of the facts of life in the Washington culture is the prevalence of lobbyists—22 for every member of Congress. And if they seem to know their way around, it is because many of them are former members. “This ‘shadow Congress,’ funded by corporations and various interest groups, is nearly as powerful as the real one. Whatever the case, lobbyists certainly have more sway over Congress than voters writing plaintive letters or placing earnest calls to their elected officials.” Money is the lingua franca of the culture. And if you can’t offer more than the other side is offering, your voice goes unheard.

Good to get a comment like this. Elmo will be pleased to know that there are places other than Washington, Canberra for example, where the same situation prevails

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