I have just been reading about the bizarre goings on in the WA parliament and the barefaced lies told by former Labor MP Barry Urban who was forced to resign before they expelled him and then his replacement, Colleen Yates, who was to stand in the by-election for the state seat of Darling Range, who also sought to deceive the electors and the parliament about her credentials.
First, Barry Urban who had claimed that he held a university degree obtained from the University of Leeds in the UK : that was a lie and Urban not only mislead Parliament and the electorate about his qualifications, he sought to deceive a parliamentary committee by providing a forged degree from the University of Leeds. It appears that Urban had been an English copper in a previous life – he would now be classed as a toe-rag I think is the term. He was then spotted wearing an English police service medal during an ANZAC day parade : he wasn’t entitled to that medal and had bought it online.
As he resigned from parliament before being expelled he is reported to have said : “I am paying a hefty price for my mistakes.”
So, then to his pre-selected replacement, Colleen Yates, who was about to present herself to the WA electorate when an astute journalist decided to run a fairly superficial check on the qualifications she had listed for herself online. They included an MBA from the University of WA on her LinkedIn profile and a Bachelor of Engineering, Master of Architecture from Washington University, among other accomplishments. All turned out to be fake : she had no tertiary qualifications whatsoever. Ms Yates resigned on Friday as Labor’s candidate for Darling Range after admitting to “minor mistakes” on her LinkedIn social media profile.
So many questions arise from these disclosures ranging from the very poor candidate checking procedures within the WA Labor Party to the quality of people putting themselves forward to serve their communities. But, what is quite startling is that when they are caught out they use terms like : “I am paying a hefty price for my mistakes” and reluctant admissions of “minor mistakes”.
In both cases these people use the term ‘mistake’ to explain their propensity to lie and deceive and, turning to the dictionary I find that mistake is defined as an action, decision, or judgment that produces an unwanted or unintentional result. Well, there certainly was an unintended result : they got caught out !
But what I’m not hearing is an apology for misleading and deceiving their political party, and the Australian public. OK this was WA but if two candidates for the same seat both turn out to be lying toads what are the odds spread across all parties, federal and state, nationally : those of you with a mathematical bent may be able to calculate those odds but it can’t be looking good.
Come the next election, I may just become a fake elector and tell everybody that I voted when in fact I had drawn something rude on the ballot paper !