03 Sep Message for Candidates
“In the Beginning, People Created Government for the People”
If you are running for Parliament right now and happen to be reading this, there are a couple of points I would like to make to you.
Ages ago, people, who are fundamentally social creatures, decided it would be a great idea if we all chipped in for the stuff we all use. Chuck some money in the pot for roads, schools, hospitals, general infrastructure and other things the group needs.
We’d then pick some people we could trust to run it – to spend the money we give them, do some planning, maybe every now and then come up with a grand vision on our behalf. Mostly, just take care of organising things so we can take care of each other.
We thought it would be ideal if everyone was fed, and safe and well, and had somewhere to live and a book to read. So we invented Taxation and Government, and grew a Democracy.
We created your jobs and called you our Representatives. Our intention was to choose the best of us – the smart, sensible, and honourable ones (we even put that in your job title so the clue would be in the name) to take care of our community with the money and ideas we contributed.
Part of choosing you to represent us was an assumption that you could empathise with us – imagine our lives, put yourselves in our shoes – exercise compassion, and be in the service of the public rather than serve your individual selves.
Imagine, then, how furious we are to know that many of you are horrible people who have surrounded yourselves with dreadful human beings. That what gets you out of bed in the morning is not the drive to make the world a better place for us, but to score points, bully, smear, obfuscate, divert, diminish and inflict pain. That your “To Do” list is less about justice and social equality, and more about power and revenge.
That’s not what we picked you for, or why we pay your salary, or who we need you to be.
There is a theory, promoted by some of you, that even exposing dirty politics helps keep dirty politicians in power because those of us who love democracy will throw our hands in the air, turn our backs and leave you to it. Essentially, the plan is that you can hold on to government by discouraging people from participating in it.
Don’t go buying stocks in that one just yet. Sometimes, when sufficient people are enraged, we also become engaged. A lot of your own crap has blown up your faces of late. This tactic may turn out badly for you, too.
And if you’re standing for Parliament right now because you’d like to do some good with our money and ideas, then give us a wave so we can spot you over the steaming pile of filth currently in view.