As hot weather and bushfires are now referred to as ‘the new normal’, it seems as if LYING is also ‘the new normal’!
Australian politicians have been caught out lying a lot lately —and yet there seems to be an acceptance of the habit, with precious little being done to curb it.
So many lies. So many potential scandals and yet we, the everyday people, appear powerless to stop such behaviour. Sure, if there is an election, we can vote out politicians who lie…but that opportunity for us here in Australia will not be available for another two years. Can we survive?
At least, in U.S., anyone who feels they have been lied to by their leader will have the chance to vote him out in November of this year. And, surely that’s what will happen. (Hopefully!)
Everyone knows Donald Trump is famous for lying - and denying it. He lies so much that there is a ‘Fact Check’ website (PolitiFact) set up to record his statements on a “Truth-o-meter”. It’s a busy site, with a fairly big Trump lie added more often than once a week.
Over in UK, Boris Johnson hasn’t had a chance to reach Trump’s standard yet. His lies mostly concern Brexit of course. We wait to see how his pattern of lying develops, as I’m sure it will.
I guess if we stopped to check on most other world leaders we would discover lying in varying degrees.
Is it only politicians and so-called leaders who lie so much? I suspect not. But how terrible if lying is accepted as an almost legitimate mode of operation.
But, back to Australia and to our (non) esteemed PM, Scott Morrison.
An enormous amount of his (and his colleagues’) lies have merely (merely!) concerned ignored promises; that is, mostly promised reforms that have not seen the light of day. So many promises, so many never heard of again, including that important Federal Integrity Commission body “with teeth” that was announced in December of 2018 and yet still nowhere to be seen, apart from an occasional argument about it.
Remember this? “On 13 December 2018, the Australian Government announced that it will establish a Commonwealth Integrity Commission (CIC) to strengthen integrity arrangements across the federal public sector.
The CIC will be a centralised, specialist centre for the investigation of corruption in the public sector. It will also work with agencies to build resilience to corruption and bolster agency capability to detect, deter and investigate corrupt conduct”. (Aus Govt Attorney General’s Dept).
I don’t intend to even mention names such as Angus Taylor…
But here’s a couple of examples of (what I’d refer to as) lies of neglect:
Promises have been made about improving the Aged Care system (so far it seems as if it is, instead, being dismantled by stealth – as observed with Medicare).
The govt. was supposed to fix up the corrupt banking sector, after the Banking Royal Commission— to which they were dragged kicking and screaming. (Concluded in Feb., 2019). Only a tiny amount of the 76 recommendations have been even slightly dealt with.
These are but a tiny example of promises not kept.
Then there are the actual LIES.
Recent lies about rorting have been widely reported. Money has been thrown around, aimed at marginal seats as a means of buying votes. Generous payments, using taxpayers’ money worked really well for Morrison’s party. Hopefully, as more and more evidence of this rorting surfaces, we, the so called ‘Quiet Australians’ will see something done about it. (Don’t hold your breath!)
Another (secret) sports grant has just popped out in the open - $150,000,000 - funding that has an extremely fishy odour about it!
By the way, that’s not 150 thousand $$, it’s 150 MILLION dollars– said to be for something about ‘water, & increasing female participation in sports’ – or some other made-up thought bubble, that went towards 14 swimming pools…
In an ABC report today, “A Queensland community on the receiving end of controversial federal funding to build a new school swimming pool says it did not want the pool anyway.”
And there are other similar tales, including a tidal pool in Port Macquarie, that no one asked for.
As for Morrison’s countless other lies – they infiltrate every one of his statements.
One of my favourite lies (small but transparently laughable), was (if anyone was listening) at the time of his infamous Hawaii holiday. The excruciatingly badly timed holiday was carried out under a cloak of secrecy. At first, when asked why it had to be secret, Morrison’s answer was that he wanted to give his children a surprise.
A mere week later, when asked why he chose to go to Hawaii at that particular time, he said that he had promised his children they would go.
So, which was it? Did his kids not know, so that it was a surprise? Or did they know and would have been disappointed if the trip was cancelled? All very minor, you might think but lies like that slip out so effortlessly.
And what an excellent idea it was to holiday then, as bushfires raged!
Perhaps being caught out was more the problem!
And good old Murdoch media is along to help ScoMo at every stage.
News Corp’s papers (and TV) have continually supported Morrison and the LNP in its untruths. It’s a weird set up. Does Murdoch have some sort of ‘world domination’ urge? Or is it just his dislike of anything resembling a Labor Party?
Way back in 2013, there were serious reports of Murdoch papers lying about Climate Change (in a study by Wendy Bacon). This has continued relentlessly.
That Climate Change is happening has been denied by the Murdoch Media for years – and yet they claim that they don’t deny the facts.
Well, who’s lying now?
Last Friday several hundred protestors could be seen (physically) lying in the street outside News Corp’s Sydney Office. Their message was simply something like ‘You’re lying here, so we’ll lie here also!’ Good tactic, with probably zero effect.
We can complain. We can lie in the gutter. We can write things on Face Book, or Twitter, or to the newspaper. We can wear a T-shirt with a slogan. But I fear it will have little effect.
Lying is here to stay.
But, is it?
Interestingly, only yesterday it was reported that “Rupert Murdoch's News Corp has been knocked by a "sluggish Australian economy".”
Hopefully, it’s not ‘the sluggish Australian economy’ that is decreasing its profits, but a more enlightened populace who are no longer buying or watching their products; no longer willing to accept the lies.
Lies from the media and lies from politicians, as huge amounts of money changes hands, as nothing less than bribes— from and to the current government. (Hello, Clive Palmer).
It is corruption that can no longer be denied.
I could go on and on about lies and how dangerous and disappointing they are. It is sad that lies form a big part of political manoeuvring these days.
Not much of a good example to be setting for anyone —young or old.
The late Cambodian leader, Norodom Sihanouk, once had something to say about lying. He said:
‘Time will inevitably uncover dishonesty and lies; history has no place for them.’
Sadly, I’m not so sure!
We shall see.