We probably shouldn’t be too surprised when someone in the NSW Liberal Party floats a rumour of a misdeed 20 years ago when it suits their political agenda. You might recollect about 12 months ago, the New South Wales Liberal Party delayed the pre-selection of candidates for some electorates in the May 2022 Federal Election. There were all sorts of excuses thrown around at the time but most commentators suggested one of the factions of the Liberal Party was playing politics until they could massage the numbers to have their preferred nominees confirmed. Despite claims over the years, clearly, the Liberal Party has factions with operatives that seem to despise each other to a far greater degree than they detest members of other political parties. The ‘branch’ members of the Liberal Party that actually believe in the ideals and ambitions of the Liberal Party bear the brunt of the political machinations through more adverse publicity, declining membership, and potentially more time in opposition.
This month we find out that current NSW Premier Dominic Perrottet wore a nazi uniform to his 21st birthday party in 2003. We also find out that someone in the NSW Liberal Party was the one that told him there was some gossip on the subject, which led him to ‘self-report’ the insensitivity publicly, albeit 20 years after it happened. As ABC News suggests
At best, it’s a privileged private school graduate and Sydney University law student celebrating the traditional start of adult life with the ultimate cringe.
At worst, it shows a complete disregard for the mass murder of millions — the history, suffering and survival of Jewish people globally nothing more than collateral damage in the name of a costume.
Regardless of the reason for Perrottet dressing as he did 20 years ago, it demonstrates that education at a privileged private school and ‘sandstone’ university doesn’t necessarily give you an understanding of ethics and morals.
The same ABC News article goes on to suggest that the reason Perrottet’s insensitive actions from 20 years ago is revisited months out from a NSW state election is pure politics. Perrottet has announced a policy for gambling at NSW pokies will require a limited-value cashless card to use the machines, rather than feeding additional currency into the machine. Some Liberals with connections to the gambling industry believe the proposals go too far and will reduce revenue. Obviously, the NSW Liberal Party is not the cohesive and close-knit group that it claims to be. You have to wonder if the NSW Liberals want to win the March state election – or is settling scores more important? The apparently diminishing number of Liberal Party ‘branch’ members are being dudded by their leadership – yet again.
Some however may be more surprised there is politics in the Catholic Church. For centuries, Catholics have been told that the Pope is the representative of the Christian God on this planet. They are also told the Christian God chooses the Pope in the enclave process by directing the Cardinals in prayer and reflection on who to choose. The recent death of Cardinal George Pell caused justifiable angst for a number of different groups of people, not least some of his fellow Cardinals that believe the current Pope isn’t necessarily following the traditions of the Catholic Church. It has been claimed that Pell wrote a memo dictating his differences with the current Pope which has been leaked outside the intended audience. the author of the document makes a number of claims where the current Pope has not lived up to the expectations of Pell and apparently others who believe
“The first tasks of the new pope will be to restore normality, restore doctrinal clarity in faith and morals, restore a proper respect for the law and ensure that the first criterion for the nomination of bishops is acceptance of the apostolic tradition”
It seems the current Pope is also an accomplished political player. The ABC reports that
there are now also at least 83 cardinals appointed by Pope Francis (the majority out of 132). He chose them specifically for their pastoral expertise as opposed to their political nous.
So the numbers are not likely in favour of the Pell faction.
Like the Liberal Party elders, Pell is reputed to have actively campaigned for the status quo instead of change. He did campaign against a number of Australian social rights legislative programs both before and after the legislation went to Parliament. Some say he didn’t act upon the reports of moral and ethical failings of others in his span of control until his position became completely untenable.
Unfortunately, there are millions of people around the world that are doing good works in the name of the Catholic Church, whether it be assisting people to find food, clothing and shelter, providing health care and emotional support to individuals or communities that are in distress. There are hundreds of practical and genuinely helpful programs across countless communities around the world routinely organised in the name of the Catholic Church. Yet it seems that some of the male hierarchy of the Catholic Church are more interested in retaining the status quo and their power than adapting their organisation to be relevant to the commonly accepted standards of the communities the organisation is active in. The decreasing number of those that are actually doing the good in the name of the Catholic Church have been dudded yet again.
Dudding those at the bottom of the power pyramid seems to be a common trait of those in power. Maybe it’s true – power corrupts and absolute power corrupts absolutely.
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