Politicians engaging in politics

Who would have thunk it.  Politicians engaging in politics.

This Bridget McKenzie business has been going on for 2 or whatever weeks now.  Yes.  Based on what as been reported, the conduct has been bad.

But the rank hypocrisy of the commentary industrial complex.  PEEE LEEEZE.

If you want to stop politicians melding in resource allocation decisions, take the candy off the table.  Don’t just cry when it is done by people you don’t agree with.  Cry when it is “generous” public service salary increases.  Cry when it is funding military procurement.  Cry when it is for Tasmania.  Cry when it is for renewable energy.  Cry when it is preferential funding for major political parties.

The latest pile of garbage comes from Dr Simon Longstaff in the AFR today:

The definition of corruption in government is well-established and widely agreed. Corruption is the use of public power for private profit.

Yep.  Fair enough.

Transparency International defines political corruption as “manipulation of policies, institutions and rules of procedure in the allocation of resources and financing by political decision makers, who abuse their position to sustain their power, status and wealth”.

You mean like every election promise ever made?  If so Dr Simon, where was your review and commentary of both the majors at the last election and especially the promises of Helicopter Bill (not to be confused with Helicopter Bronny)?

But for a laugh, Dr Simon writes:

The problem is that the programs judged by unbiased public servants to be most in need were left worse off.

Unbiased public servants.  Are you kidding Dr Simon?  If you believe public servants are unbiased, has TAFKAS got an investments scheme for you!

Maybe, just maybe, public servants are not biased towards a particular political party (although the ALP and Green representatives coming from the ACT might suggest otherwise).  But rest assured that public servants have as many biases as the rest of us.

You gotta love this comment too:

This goes a long way towards explaining the attitude of three regional mayors interviewed on ABC Radio National during last year’s federal election. Their common aim was to make their electorates as marginal as possible – just so that they might be noticed by the likes of McKenzie.

You mean that these “three regional mayors” did not get the amount of pork to which they believe they are righteously entitled?

And to Dr Simon’s closing question:

It’s a simple and obvious requirement. So, why is it so hard to find people with the moral courage to uphold this basic principle of liberal democracy?

Why?  Because there is no morality in taking money from one group of people at the point of a gun and giving it to another group wrapped in a ribbon.

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25 Responses to Politicians engaging in politics

  1. C.L.

    In her weekly anti-Morrison column on Saturday, Laura Tingle made a case for the McKenzie affair being the worst of ts kind in Australian history.

    You have to laugh.

  2. Dr Simon Longstaff:

    Longstaff was inaugural President of The Australian Association for Professional Applied Ethics and is a Fellow of the World Economic Forum. He is Chairman of Woolworths Limited Corporate Responsibility Panel, AMP Capital Socially Responsible Investment Advisory Committee, Defence Science and Technology Organisation Probity Board and the International Advisory Board of the Genographic Project. Longstaff serves on the Australian Institute of Company Directors Corporate Governance Committee, BHP Billiton Forum on Corporate Responsibility, CSIRO Niche Manufacturing Flagship Advisory Committee and Nestle Oceania Creating Shared Value Advisory Board.

    Why is that these academics/ex-academics never look to their own glass houses and speak out., especially universities.

  3. worst of ts kind in Australian history

    Like the ‘darkest day in sport’ I guess.

  4. Cui Bono

    There may well be hypocrisy, double standards etc but it’s good to see profligate pollies taken down a peg. They have put a $ figure on everything and are then surprised to see we mugs might get a bit ornery.
    Sad to see so-called conservatives trash volunteerism.
    Waiting now for the volunteer firey ethos to wither.

  5. I_am_not_a_robot

    Some pretty dangerous ideas there TAFKAS, maybe Dr Simon will invite you to participate in his next festival.
    You would be in a distinct minority, Dr Simon’s Festival of Dangerous Ideas (FODI) is like a year of the ABC’s Q & A condensed into a couple of days.

  6. Pyrmonter

    @ bemused

    Longstaff does get out. He addressed the Liberals assembled at Rouse Hill in favour of ‘democracy’ Molan/Waringah-style. Odd the company some people keep.

  7. stackja

    CSIRO built glasshouses at what cost?

  8. Beachcomber

    If you want to stop politicians melding in resource allocation decisions, take the candy off the table.

    Exactly!
    Earlier this week some academic pointed out that these public “indulgences” by the government of the day are unconstitutional. It got some traction while the ABC thought they could use it against the S.F.L.s but it soon disappeared as an area of discussion.

  9. Perfidious Albino

    Dr Simon Long-bow…

  10. feelthebern

    Fun fact.
    Dr Simon Longstaff wrote a column in the Fairfax press saying there was no need for a Royal Commission into the banking sector.
    At the time, the banking & financial services sector were some of the biggest contributors to his organisation the Ethics Centre.
    No disclosure was made.

  11. feelthebern

    Longstaff does get out.

    As long as the money is good enough, he’ll get out & about.

  12. Professor Fred Lenin

    Politicians lying ? A lot of them are from the lawtrade ,where lying is bread and butter daily .
    I remember this media tart interviewing Nigel Farage “Your party doesnt even have a manifesto “she said sneeringly ,”we dont need one ,every manifesto ever written was full of lies and we tell the truth ” replied Nigel .putting the little woke creature back in her box

  13. Doghouse Riley

    Dr Simon Longstaff wrote a column in the Fairfax saying there was no need for a Royal Commission into the banking sector.
    At the time, the banking & financial services sector were some of the biggest contributors to his organisation the Ethics Centre.
    No disclosure was made
    .

    Really?

    Simon is one of those folks who when wronged likes to correct the record – loves firing off emails to people who challenge his narrative. He’s been on this site once or twice in the past. Maybe we can encourage him to explain himself. Whadaya say, Doc?

  14. John A

    And to Dr Simon’s closing question:

    It’s a simple and obvious requirement. So, why is it so hard to find people with the moral courage to uphold this basic principle of liberal democracy?

    Why? Because there is no morality in taking money from one group of people at the point of a gun and giving it to another group wrapped in a ribbon.

    Dr Simon obviously hasn’t been reading the right stuff. Have you, TAFKAS?

    “We make men without chests and expect from them virtue and enterprise. We laugh at honour and are shocked to find traitors in our midst.”

    ― C.S. Lewis, The Abolition of Man

    Readily available at all good bookstores. Bad bookstores should be avoided.

    Here is the Wikipedia entry for it. Even there we find insightful and incisive commentary on present concerns such as climate “emergency” and the corruption of science.

    Closing comment from me via a decent Facebook meme: “One does not read CS Lewis only once”

  15. Bruce

    @ Cui Bono:

    “Waiting now for the volunteer firey ethos to wither.”

    EXACTLY what the fireys UNION wants.

  16. Leo G

    The definition of corruption in government is well-established and widely agreed. Corruption is the use of public power for private profit.

    Yep. Fair enough.

    So a politician who reduces regulation compliance costs for business is thereby acting corruptly?

  17. Spurgeon Monkfish III

    unbiased public servants

    An unbiased public savant ‘aving a rest.

  18. Des Deskperson

    ”Unbiased public servants. Are you kidding Dr Simon? If you believe public servants are unbiased, has TAFKAS got an investments scheme for you!’

    The idea that the APS – or any other Commonwealth public sector agency – is chokers with deep state marxists undermining the Coalition and persecuting conservatives at every turn is a crude fantasy.

    But let’s suppose for a moment that a Minister of the Crown was confronted with a recommendation or a set of recommendations that appeared to be biased in favour the political and electoral aspirations
    of the opposition. What should he or she do?

    If the Minister was intelligent, ethical and administratively astute, he/she would send the recommendations back and ask the agency management to justify in detail their recommendation in terms of the evidence and the established criteria for assessment, where necessary reminding them of their legal obligations to serve the government of the day and the penalties for failing do so.

    What such an intelligent, ethical and administratively astute Minister wouldn’t do would be to set up an alternative system of assessment based on dubious criteria that ignored or override evidence and the established criteria for assessment.

  19. Spurgeon Monkfish III

    The idea that the APS – or any other Commonwealth public sector agency – is chockers with deep state marxists undermining the Coalition and persecuting conservatives at every turn is a crude fantasy.

    No it isn’t. If you’d had the misfortune to have had anything to do with the utterly useless ignorant staggeringly incompetent parasitic collectivist fuckwits (BIRM) in the last 20 years, you’d know it.

    Give it a rest, Deskie. Your beloved mythical “professional” and “apolitical” grublic service is cactus.

  20. Squirrel

    There’s nothing at all new about this stuff, it’s just a matter (as Des elegantly points out) of not getting caught.

    The best (I’m dreaming, of course) outcome from this would be for Morrison to decide that the Commonwealth will get out of these fiddly little programs and leave it to the states and territories to run this stuff. There’d be administrative savings and less scope for stuff-ups and consequent distractions from the things that the federal government wants the voters to focus on.

  21. duncanm

    Why? Because there is no morality in taking money from one group of people at the point of a gun and giving it to another group wrapped in a ribbon.

    Liberty quote right there

  22. The definition of corruption in government is well-established and widely agreed. Corruption is the use of public power for private profit.

    So like Gillard giving 300 million to the Clinton Foundation Education Initiative then going to work for them. Or the 100 million to Adelaide Uni where the corrupt lying slapper now teaches…
    Right?

    Oh no, it doesn’t count when they do it.

  23. Fair Shake of the Sauce Bottle

    3 wise Mayors. It’s only a rort if they’re not in on it.

  24. Lee

    But for a laugh, Dr Simon writes:

    The problem is that the programs judged by unbiased public servants to be most in need were left worse off.

    That’s almost (but not quite) as ludicrous as the notion that leftists flog like a dead horse, that “the ABC is unbiased” or “impartial”!

  25. a reader

    Longstaff? The bloke who lectures us on morals and ethics based on his own inventions and misunderstandings of the bible? The very same bloke who called people ‘Isslamophobes’ for daring to question the advertised ‘Honour Killings are Morally Justified’ speech to be given by Hizbut-ut-Tahrir?

    Forgive me if I don’t take a word of advice from him

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