Another day, another travel scandal. Bronwyn Bishop was forced to resign as speaker for her use of a chopper, but this was just the latest in year after year of abuse. Mark Dreyfus used taxpayer funds for a family ski trip in 2013. Julia Gillard had taxpayers pay for a VIP jet to attend a friend’s wedding. Just yesterday we learned that Tony Burke MP used taxpayer funds for a family holiday to Uluru. The list goes on and on and on – and these are only the ones we’ve been able to find out about!
And every time we are promised that the problem will be fixed. The rules will be changed. A new code will be introduced. Things will be different.
And nothing ever changes.
The reason is simple: Loopholes will always be found, rules will be twisted, and travel will be within the letter of the law while totally missing its spirit.
This is why I just launched a new transparency campaign for something different, something that is proven to work – and I hope you will be able to join me in making it law.
There is only one thing that can break our politicians’ age of entitlement: Full openness, transparency and accountability to the Australian people. It is only when voters know how every cent is our money is being spent, that we can be assured it will be spent properly.
The solution is simple: Require every politicians and their staff member to publish online their travel, its cost, and its purpose, within 7 days of it being taken. Create an easy to use portal where every Australian voter can see what his MP and Senator has been doing, and if it is a wise use of funds.
Let 22 million Australians be the judge of what is right – and what is wrong. It is our money, and we have the right to know where it is going without having to submit expensive Freedom of Information requests, read through hundreds of pages of budget documents, or hope someone in the media will spot a story.
By allowing public scrutiny, politicians will have to justify their travel not just to bureaucrats or their fellow politicians, but to taxpayers. As result, extravagant travel and abuse will plummet. They might be able to fool their peers, but they won’t be able to fool their voters.
When the Federal Government passed laws allowing them to spy on us online, we were assured – if you have nothing to hide, you have nothing to fear. The same rule should now apply to them. If they have nothing to hide, then they should welcome this campaign without question.
The technology for such a portal has existed for close to a decade – in fact, an independent review commissioned for the Department of Finance suggested it back in 2010! It will be cheap to set up, and will lead to better government through ending abuse and corruption. There is no argument against it.
With your help, we will be able to make the change we need – please join our campaign and email your local MP and Senators’ today!
Opening the books to scrutiny is the only way to make a difference. At the end of the day, we pay for their travel and we have a right to know what they do with it. It’s as simple as that.
Thank you for your support as always,
Australian Taxpayers’ Alliance
PS: Please take 5 minutes to click HERE to the only solution that will stop travel rorts!