In politics anywhere the word ‘mandate’ is powerful. But it shouldn’t be. Today, July 18 2014, Prime Minister, Tony Abbot, announced that the government had successfully fulfilled its mandate – it had abolished the ‘carbon tax’ as it promised in the election which it won last year. Whether people wanted this change or not, they all automatically agreed Abbot had the right, perhaps even the duty to enact this policy.
He did not. Winning an election ‘mandates’ the party with the majority of votes to attempt to form a government. If it can’t get the numbers to do so it loses this right in a matter of weeks. It has no mandate to do anything else – for the simple there is no way of telling that the majority voted specifically for that aspect of the election campaign. Many policies, promises, hints, ideas, red herrings are flung around during an election. In fact, many authorities argue that the opposition never wins an election; rather the (previous) government lost the election. When you think about the chaos in the Labor government in the past two years, that wisdom is spot on. New governments deceive the population when they say they have a mandate. They never do. The opposition never points this out – probably because they want to use the same language when thy next win an election.
All governments thrive on deceptions of one form or other. They love ignorant masses. That’s why all governments love and encourage sport. It keeps the people politically quiet.
The role of the state and the promotion of sporting heroes is one of the many things discussed in my latest book, which is just about to hit the shops.
“Will to Win: The West at Play”, author Don Miller, published by Hybrid Publishers, $19.99 rrp can be ordered on-line and mailed anywhere in Australia for flat $2 postage.. Details to be announced in the next few days.politis