What has happened to this country? It’s the chicken and the egg scenario – are we drawn to sensationalism because it is handed to us by the media or do the media mete out the ridiculous hyperbole because the public demand it? From the outside looking in, it feels like hysterical coverage cements both the media and the Australian public as part of a nasty, self-obsessed nation.
Today alone we are told the biggest issue affecting our political landscape is the dreaded ‘illegal’ asylum seekers and that Kevin Rudd has to address this. Really? That is the biggest problem in this country that needs to be put on the front page of the papers? How many people have actually even met an asylum seeker? Beverley O’Connor on ABC breakfast this morning stated that this “Asylum seeker issue resonates in the public”?
Yeah, umm, why? Because the media have constantly flogged it as being a problem regardless of FACTS. I have to admit I love trolling the die-hard conservative with one simple question “Really, OMG! You must be so scared of the harm those Asylum Seekers will do here in Nambour”
Yes Nambour, FFS! How many who raise this ‘problem’ have any bloody idea, ever met one of these poor buggers fleeing poverty or persecution? How many in this country actually will have their lives affected by an asylum seeker?
The asylum seeker issue is extremely complicated and has perplexed many far more knowledgeable than me. IF Australian’s were actually the caring compassionate people we like to think we are, we would not be tolerating this persistent demonisation. But we are!
Same with the FBT changes. Really? PM Agenda had to focus on the “OMG one company is already sacking people”. Seriously? Twenty four hours after a perfectly reasonable request that people actually prove they deserve the tax break a company announces sackings.
Sorry, I smell bullshit. This company obviously already had a problem.
Again this morning they are still carrying on about the FBT and getting finance experts on TV to tell us how scary this all is. Basically, we want a surplus, we have to cut costs and the Government picked out an area that is being rorted. Yes being rorted, and the finance people and other talking heads they get on TV from the Novated Lease companies that say that it is not being rorted are bald faced liars. We all know a few people who have taken advantage of that loophole. That is not a problem, hell, good on you, if you could take advantage and legally reduce your tax, fair call. Sorry, it is over, you have to actually ‘prove’ it now, big bloody deal!
Wonder what people who have to wait at Centrelink think of the outrage at thought of having to fill out your log book every five years?
— Nareen Young (@nareenyoung) July 18, 2013
Where was the outcry from the media of the sky falling in when single parents had their payments reduced to ‘help the budget get into surplus’? Where was the wall to wall coverage? Where was the 24/7 talking to experts with dire warnings of children being made homeless due to poverty? Where were the experts discussing the serious concerns in regard to extra pressure on charities to help these people? Where were the mental health professionals advising that a system that can’t cope now will be crushed in coming months with support needs for struggling families coping with depression?
We have a shocking amount of rising homelessness in this country. We have people on Newstart who may never get out of the poverty cycle. We have children growing up with very little hope for a brighter future in this country. We have people in aged care facilities being abused. We have Australians suffering from mental illness who can’t afford or don’t have access to help. I could fill a page listing serious concerns for people in this country, yet all we are seeing in the media is the ‘problem of illegal asylum seekers’ and ‘drama of FBT changes’. Really, those two issues are the most important facing our country?
Yesterday on PM Agenda on Sky, David Speers questioned Julie Bishop in regard to the Coalition stating that this election will be a ‘referendum on the Carbon tax’ and Mr Speers point blank asked Ms Bishop that should the ALP win the election would the Coalition respect that the Australian public had given the ALP a mandate and would the coalition therefore support that? Ms Bishop after a ridiculous amount of Carbon Tax tyre kicking, refused to agree to that. Basically stating that what the Coalition thought was more important than what the Australian people thought. This is actually what I think is the biggest problem we have in this country!
We are pretty much in a situation where what political parties think will win votes and protect their ideology is more important than actually representing the Australian public. Forgive me for being naive, but I thought representing punters was actually the primary job requirement for an MP?
I would like all Australians to give our politicians and media a kick up the butt. Every time you see racist dog whistling or defence of aspirational bogan middle class welfare at the expense of real issues, call it out! Write to your papers and complain. Email the TV stations and complain. Write to your politicians and complain.
What is happening in this country at the moment is not politics, it is just plain nasty pandering to the lowest common denominator and it is time we all stood up to it and took our country back to the caring, ‘fair-go’ Australia we like to think we are.
Best wishes that we can turn back this tide, not of Asylum Seekers, but tide of nastiness our infecting our national psyche :(