Unapologetic insolence from an aging subversive

Unapologetic insolence from an aging subversive

Wednesday, 19 September 2007

Bob & Peter



I don’t know about you, fellow blogger, but I’m browned of by the faux election campaign and its reporting in the national media.

What I object to is spin, hypocrisy, and the culture of our political debate which is largely driven by a thirst for power instead of a pursuit of principle. I would have thought that this is where blogging has a place – it short circuits all this crud and creates an alternative.

Can I suggest a different political culture – one where we vote not for a party but for a local member? I know it’s na├»ve, but it’s what our founding fathers intended. It is interesting to conjecture what kind of governance we’d have if every single voter followed this principle.

There are two politicians I admire – both Independents.

One is Peter Andren, Independent member for Calare, tragically stricken with cancer which will end his political career. Peter always demonstrated true independence which requires courage.

The other is Bob Katter, Independent member for Kennedy. For five years in the early nineties I worked in a regional educational administration job in Mt Isa. Bob’s Office was across the road. Every now and again you would see his big hat approaching, with Bob advocating politely and earnestly for one of his constituents. Often he would have the constituent in tow. The fact that I worked in a state jurisdiction and that Bob was a Federal member was neither here nor there. Usually it could be sorted out at local level, and Bob would always have the best interests of his constituent in mind, irrespective of race, political persuasion or sobriety.

We could do with a parliament wall-to-wall with Independents who saw their prime responsibility to their constituents rather than to an ideology.

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