Allan Takes Aim Blog

What is a politician’s first interest?

Posted on: 30 August 2013


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What is a politician’s first interest?
I always thought I knew the answer to this question but as this federal election drags on to Saturday, 7th September, when our vote will determine which party will govern Australia for the next three years and who will be Prime Minister my original view is changing.

I’ve always thought that, in a federal election, the interest of all candidates, regardless of their personal philosophy or political ideology, would be the country itself. Indeed, from what I hear and read that no longer seems to be the case.

Elections today have become stages where many would be politicians without talent strut while spouting bad rhetoric that lacks sincerity and thus does not stir the emotion of voters. Indeed at times their speeches sound like the inane ramblings of people who have escaped the tower of babel. On the other hand, the same rhetoric delivered by good orators could stir the emotions of listeners and make bad rhetoric sound good.

In days gone by party leaders were chosen because they could deliver stimulating speeches because such speeches were the bread and butter of election campaigns. But the art of making speeches is being lost.

Fewer and fewer politicians are good orators. Facebook and Twitter are fast becoming their stages because their limited capacity for word use makes these allegedly social communication channels the ideal vehicles for politicians many of whose word skill are limited.

Indeed one of the silliest defences an inadequate politician used to defend Twitter and Face-book that I’ve heard was that everyone knows what E= mc2 means but when he was asked to explain he couldn’t. I did say it was a silly defence.

Another thing that has changed is that once upon a time politicians could explain when asked to explain to voters how they would benefit from a policy. Today, unfortunately, many politicians today cannot explain the benefit of policies and why a particular policy will be more beneficial than the equivalent policy of their opponents.

The reason for this is that they have had little or no hand in developing policy. Policy is being created by backroom boys. This becomes evident to such an extent that the phrase the left hand doesn’t know what the right hand is doing springs to mind.

But let me answer the question posed by the blog’s caption. Today, it seems to me the first interest of politicians, particularly those seeking re-election, is self – interest. In speech after speech the interests of the party and their place in I but not in the country take precedence as if the country wouldn’t exist without the party.

At the same time, they try to secure their personal future by asking voters to mortgage their future voting intentions to the party they represent on behalf of their children. They use the iron hand in the velvet club technique with voters by preaching fear that if they don’t elect them, the future of their children will be bleak.

In the process the Australian Government which is seeking re-election today made mistake on mistake because in its haste to make the opposition look dishonest and incompetent they were unprepared when its promises were exposed as worse. They faced the difficulty that faces all political parties when they make policy on the run as they would have know had they been familiar with the Rubáiyát of Omar Khayyám that says:

The Moving Finger writes; and, having writ,
Moves on: nor all thy Piety nor Wit
Shall lure it back to cancel half a Line,
Nor all thy Tears wash out a Word of it.

Comment welcome.
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1 Response to "What is a politician’s first interest?"

Helpful information. Lucky me I discovered your website unintentionally, and
I am surprised why this twist of fate didn’t happened in advance!
I bookmarked it.

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