Tony Abbott is being criticised for not having a Minister for Science, or Minister for Ageing among other potential ministerial titles. As if every interest group needs its own minister. We could have the Minister for Toddlers. The Minister for Juveniles. The Minister for Blind People. The Minister for Centenarians. The Minister for Particle Physics. The Minister for Cleaners.
And so on.
The problem is that every group thinks that its minister represents the group’s interests.
But ministers are not paid to represent a sectional interest. They are paid to represent the national interest. The Cabinet should adopt sensible and sound policies in relation to a whole range of interests including science and ageing. That is a reasonable expectation for the Cabinet.
But interest groups are not entitled, and should not be entitled, to have their own lobbyists in the Government.
Disclaimer: I wasn’t born yesterday. I recognise that many governments have been filled with advocates for various vested interests. This doesn’t mean we should be comfortable with that fact.
Update: on request the Ministry of Silly Walks. Note it gives grants to people trying out new silly walks.