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Politicians are making themselves irrelevant

The more politicians lie to us, the more they think advertising replaces substantive debate, the more they rely on talking points rather than considered informed opinion, the more they use their position to reward their mates, the less relevant they become.

Scott Morrison can say until he is blue in the face that we will meet our emissions reduction targets but we can actually look up the facts for ourselves.

Tony Abbott can keep spinning on his arse doing the Paris hokey pokey – no-one is listening to him.

Matt Canavan and George Christensen can pray for more coal-fired power stations but no-one will put up the money.

Peter Dutton can cry wolf till he is hoarse but the citizens of Melbourne continue to enjoy its culinary delights.

The “better economic managers” myth is a persistent one but how long can they even hang onto that when we are in a per capita recession because of stagnant wage growth and increasing cost of living? I know company profits are high, but companies don’t vote.

How can we avoid cynicism when newly promoted and extra keen Linda Reynolds tells us that wage suppression is not a tool they are using to boost employment and that anyone who said so knows nothing about economics……until she was told it was a quote from her Finance Minister and not Bill Shorten as she at first thought. She went from he knows nothing to he’s absolutely right in the space of 16 seconds.

We still have politicians who think that our gender or sexuality is their business. As they moralise from on high about “ideal families”, we are subjected to seemingly never-ending scandals about their own tawdry behaviour.

As people on welfare are labelled leaners and bludgers, politicians fight tooth and nail to retain what they call ‘entitlements’ which roughly translates to having someone else pay for everything, hopefully for the rest of your life. Want to see a concert? A football game? A fashion show? You name it, here’s a free ticket for you and your family and here’s a jet to take you and a chauffeur to drive you because, as Barnaby reminded us when defending Bronwyn Bishop’s use of limos to go to the opera, they are often obliged to drink at these events.

We are expected to believe that it is refugees who are responsible for a lack of affordable housing, long hospital waiting lists, unemployment, and congestion on our roads. Nothing at all to do with the people who plan the infrastructure and set the immigration levels and the spending priorities. Nothing to do with the people who overstay on tourist and education visas or all those who arrive by plane and then seek asylum. Boats, drowning, Bill Shorten, soft borders…..someone pass me the talking points, I’ve forgotten what I am supposed to say about Christmas Island.

Trade unions are habitually attacked because we can’t have the workers having a voice about the value of their labour. Groups like GetUp! and Greenpeace are likewise vilified. They seem to fear ordinary people having a say.

But our children have had enough. Girls are fleeing the oppression in Saudi Arabia. Schoolchildren in America are fighting for gun laws. They are bemused by the intolerance of some adults to diversity. And around the world, children will march tomorrow to demand that we put the health of the planet before profit.

More power to their arm. Politics is not confined to the Canberra bubble boys much as you may have fought to keep it that way.

We are people hear us roar

In numbers too big to ignore

Cause we know too much to go back and pretend.

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  1. Jon Chesterson

    ‘Hear the people roar, boys – Your walls are about to fall!’

    We’re right behind you Kaye

  2. David Bruce

    ScuMo has a bigger problem looming and it goes back to the Australia Act 1986. The LNP are trying to defuse a time bomb and I expect it to blow up in their faces before they can announce an election date…

    see “Understand the Constitution of the Australian Commonwealth” – Facebook group

  3. Presser#1

    ” Canberra bubble boys”……love it!

  4. Kaye Lee

    Perhaps the right-wingers who are condemning these kids for taking action should remind themselves of Helen Reddy’s song…

    You can bend but never break me
    ‘Cause it only serves to make me
    More determined to achieve my final goal
    And I come back even stronger
    Not a novice any longer
    ‘Cause you’ve deepened the conviction in my soul

    Many of these kids will vote in the 2022 election. Some of them will vote in this election. It takes real arrogance to dismiss them.

  5. Alcibiades

    Kaye Lee

    Let’s not forget the ~100,000 who already signed onto to the electoral rolls early because of the Marriage Equality vote, energised & engaged, and they will be voting at this election …

  6. Kaye Lee

    Yup, they pulled the wrong rein there. Lots of kids who wouldn’t have bothered suddenly found a reason to pay attention. I have two children in their twenties who are basically apolitical but the social media campaign got them all fired up. Like everyone else, they have friends and family who are gay. It was no big deal until the postal survey made it one for them.

  7. wam

    we are the media watch our show
    every morning here’s what you know
    in case a change makes you frisky
    remember the economy and shorten is risky
    every headline says labor no
    and shorten is not the way to go
    journalists with ipads pending
    fingers poised for labor’s spending
    an advertising and slogan spree
    could set some worries free
    sprinkle heavily the lying dust
    and status quo could be the trust
    ps does get up get up to the drum or only the ipa???

  8. Peter F

    Yes, Kaye, the marriage equality vote was another in the long list of own goals by the coalition. This will be a vital election for this country’s future.

  9. James O'Neill

    The good news Kaye is that there is good evidence that people are more and more immune to the constant BS coming from Morrison and his motley crew. This next election is going to be an electoral wipeout for both the Libs and the Nats.

  10. John Lord

    “If we’re not raising new generations to be better stewards of the environment, then what’s the point”
    Have a great day.

  11. Andreas Bimba

    Fine sentiments Kaye, it is incredibly frustrating for most of us having to endure this appalling federal government and knowing so many still support them. It looks like FINALLY enough of those that voted for Turnbull and Joyce’s teams last federal election have now changed their minds and we are likely to have a Labor victory later this year.

    Companies don’t vote but also as Wam’s comment suggests, in our very sick democracy money does vote and decisively so.

    Money votes by controlling most of our mass media which manipulates and distorts the minds of much of the electorate. Money votes by funding the most influential think tanks that define the agenda of our elected governments. Money votes by funding the election campaigns of their chosen political sycophants so they can saturate the local media, letterboxes, electors phones, bill boards and fences with posters. Money votes through lobbyists that work powerfully and intelligently behind the scenes finding a way to get the numbers or at the key decision makers by any dirty means at their disposal over an often compliant or vulnerable political class. Money votes by drafting much of the legislation presented to parliament in the areas that money considers important. Money votes by offering rich rewards such as extravagant career postings to those political harlots that can deliver for them (Peter Costello, Martin Fergusen and Andrew Robb come to mind but there are so many). Money votes by funding media attack campaigns against policies it doesn’t like such as Labor’s proposed mining tax. Money votes by deciding which of the boys fill key positions in the government bureaucracy especially important ones like the ATO. Money votes by only offering jobs especially in regional areas that align with money’s ideology for example new coal mines or native forest logging. Money votes by offering a few crumbs off the table to the more wealthy ‘commoners’ to get their vote in the form of tax concessions like negative gearing, CGT discount, dividend imputation, super contributions and the family trust rort even though the vast bulk of these concessions actually go to the very wealthy. Money votes by defining the curriculum and who gets appointed in our economics and business studies faculties.

    I’m sure others can add many more.

    We must work to remove the corrosive influence of big money over our democracy, governments and mass media. A Labor victory is just the first step of many that are required.

  12. Michael Taylor

    It was great to stand with those school kids today. They were so passionate, and equally, determined to agitate change.

    There was also an equal number of older people, I’d say in the 60+ bracket. Missing was the generation in between. They were about, but seemed more interested in scanning whatever in the nearby shops.

    Yours truly even gave a short speech. Tempted as I was to ramble on about politics and remind these fantastic kids that more powerful than the climate strike was their vote in a few years, and to enrol when eligible, I prudently refrained and instead thanked them for doing what we older generations should have done.

  13. Keith

    There was great passion expressed at the demonstration I attended. Good to see so many mature aged people supporting the students.
    While students are not able to vote, they may have some influence over the way their parents and older relatives vote.
    Excuse me … but, the comments coming from the LNP at present are just like pissing into a strong wind in relation to climate change.

    The LNP have had five and a half years to sort policy on climate change out, they are still arguing about what to do. Where they have attempted to do something which had been the domain of Labor, they have well and truly stuffed up … NBN and NDIS.

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