Here’s a question to consider: Is Parliament a workplace? Not for the public servants that is, but rather for the elected Parliamentarians? Spartacus contends not. Spartacus also thinks Parliamentarians don’t think it is a workplace either because many workplace laws don’t seem to apply to them. Is there an award? Is there an enterprise agreement?
What the Parliamentarians want is the best of the all worlds. High salaries and fringe benefits but without the constraints or accountabilities. People in a normal workplace don’t write their own policies (hours, salaries, fringe benefits) and then apply or ignore them as they say fit.
So can we please stop referring to what has been alleged within the Liberal Party as workplace bullying. It is not a work place. It is really not bullying either.
But when it comes to what has been claimed as bullying, one must ask how spineless are these people? Male, female, whatever. Spineless.
Much of what has been claimed as bullying has been situations where MPs/Senators have been pressed to sign here or vote this way lest their party endorsement is taken away.
Oh me-oh, oh my-oh. Oh, Cleveland Ohio. Let me get a tissue to wipe my tears.
What levels of courage and fortitude these people have that all it takes to get them to vote one way or another is to threaten disendorsement. Also why is it considered corruption to pay for votes but not corruption to threaten to take away money for votes?
But aside from that, how textbook for standing up for what one believe in or acting as a representative of ones community:
I will always stand up for what I believe in and for my community unless of course I am at risk of dis-endorsement, and then of course I will do what I am told by party apparatchiks.
All it seems to take to get these people to jump is to threaten their comfortable and well paid sinecures. Leaders or Mercenaries? Community representatives or cowards? Which is it?
But if these Parliamentarians want this so called bullying by pre-selection pressure to end then the power to pre-select/de-select candidates needs to be taken out of the hands of the “powerbrokers”. Candidates need to be chosen through plebiscites. This way, it is the party members and not the party apparatchiks who can give and take away pre-selection.
More fundamentally, the problem seems to be the whole professional career politician. No longer are our representatives people who have been experienced in non parliamentary activities such as business, academia, farming, law, union, whatever. Rather, many have determined that their personal economic value proposition is maximised through a job as a parliamentarian (plus post parliamentarian options – lobbying, ambassadorships, Clinton Global Initiative) than in the real economy and real world. This is why they are so susceptible to dis-endorsement threats — it is a threat to their economic livelihood.
If Australians want better Parliamentarians, they need to join a political party and demand the power to pre-select candidates; rather than sit around and wait for the unions to select ALP and Green candidates and the lobbyists to select Liberal candidates.