How can our coun­cil se­cure in­ter­na­tional ser­vices, when we cant even hold onto do­mes­tic ser­vices?

Whitsunday Times - - WHITSUNDAY VIEWS -

Why do politi­cians ig­nore well qual­i­fied sug­ges­tions and ad­vice, pre­fer­ring to make up their own mind about what ap­proach will work and what ap­proach won’t work?

Why do politi­cians stand up and en­cour­age sup­port of the Dob in a Dealer Cam­paign when ex­ten­sive ev­i­dence ex­ists to strongly in­di­cate that it sim­ply can’t work? The an­swer is pub­lic­ity! Politi­cians, com­mit­tees, boards, coun­cil­lors – you name it – are rarely wired for lis­ten­ing. Too of­ten they be­lieve that their pur­pose in life is to talk over in­ter­view­ers and the pub­lic, and dream up so­lu­tions to the prob­lems that they think we have. Im­ple­ment­ing a so­lu­tion is of less sig­nif­i­cance to them as long as the pub­lic­ity cam­paign that sur­rounds it can be well man­aged – not that it’s al­ways well man­aged.

News flash! Politi­cians are there to lis­ten to what the ex­perts and the broader com­mu­nity are telling them. We should know – we put them there! Firstly, ‘lis­ten to the prob­lem’. Se­condly, ‘lis­ten to the so­lu­tion’. Only then should politi­cians draw on their vast or­gan­i­sa­tional re­sources (De­part­ments, QANGOs, $1m, etc.) and sim­ply be an en­abling force of pub­lic will.

Dobbing in a Dealer is re­ally only a very small ex­am­ple of a very big is­sue. Other ex­am­ples in­clude the Adani coal pro­ject, Whis­per Bay boat ramp, the sports field half way be­tween some­where and nowhere, build­ing heights, peo­ple feel­ing safe and calm in their own streets and sub­urbs with­out hav­ing self­ish and thought­less peo­ple in­vade that calm­ness with­out con­se­quence. Politi­cians are fail­ing us be­cause they’re try­ing to im­ple­ment their own short term ideas.

Most so­cial prob­lems are caused be­cause per­pe­tra­tors are dis­en­fran­chised by politi­cians ig­nor­ing ev­ery sign of our col­lec­tive so­cial dis­ap­point­ment in them. To­day’s child in de­ten­tion is to­mor­row’s binge drinker, drug mis­user, un­em­ployed, home­less. Ac­cord­ing to the Dob in a Dealer cam­paign we should go out, get them, and put them back in jail - again. Tony Bell Can­non­vale

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