Politicians love to tell us how hard they work. The hours are horrendous. The toll on the family is unbearable. Oh, the pressure.
These people do not have to have any qualifications. They haven’t had to spend years studying, incurring a huge debt, to get the job. They don’t have to reskill in their middle age.
They don’t have to have any experience or expertise at anything, though fund-raising is seen as a plus on your CV. They haven’t had to start at the bottom and devote years of hard work to working their way up.
They don’t have to actually do anything – like build a house, or deliver a baby, or fix a car, or tend to the elderly, or fight fires. They never have to .meet a deadline or stick to a contract.
Hell, they don’t even have to turn up to work if they don’t want to.
As for the toll on the family, the House of Representatives will sit for an onerous 45 days in 2019. Should they miss their partner for the, at most, four days they are gone, the family can join the politician wherever they happen to be at public expense.
Perhaps if they made Parliament House an alcohol-free zone, there might be less “strain” on marital relationships.
It can be argued that local members must then have community engagement back in their electorates, except that seems to have degenerated into pics on twitter and facebook saying “Here I am at….”.
Fortuitously, they always seem to be with people grateful for their presence. From personal experience, they move on pretty quickly if you have a concern you want to discuss, and block you from their facebook page if you ask questions or post inconvenient evidence (I’m looking at you Lucy Wicks).
Apart from PR, the actual job of this bunch of people with no expertise whatsoever is to be advised by the best experts in the land as to what our challenges are, how best to prioritise resource use to address them, what regulations must be put into place to protect the best interests of the people and the environment, and how best can we contribute to global efforts.
We invest a lot of money into education, training and research, and into expert inquiries, we employ thousands of public servants in departments whose job it is to advise government, only for politicians to ignore their findings and recommendations.
We have problems. We have experts who know how to fix them. We just need politicians who care more about what they say than what Alan Jones and Ray Hadley say.
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