Criticisms of the federal budget and broken election promises have been made over the past week which are almost the reverse of comments made when the Liberal government was in opposition and vice versa. The government’s claims that it has had to fix up the mess left behind when they took office are also typical rhetoric heard from the other side of the political fence in times past. What is the real truth?
In politics, truth is an illusion. A carefully crafted image of responsible governance is all that seems to matter when the next poll drives the political landscape. Politicians shore up their image and muck-rake their opponents with cheap points-scoring. Even media commentators are prepared to seize upon every little point of difference to generate a headline (and a living) and are prepared to get personal in order to do it.
So, all this gets me wondering if other leaders in society have higher standards, or whether human nature drives some to consolidate whatever advantages they can. There is a fine line between protecting people from aspects of truth that can hurt them and protecting ourselves (…or lying). When personal integrity can be compromised for advantage in ways that are justified as wisdom and discretion and where they stop short of being blatantly dishonest, it seems easy to cross the line, especially where public scrutiny is less severe than in politics anyway.
For me, I want to ensure that I have high self-imposed standards that hold up before the ‘audience of one’ who is always watching. We will all give an account of our lives and actions on Judgment Day and that matters most. To live with the pressure of public scrutiny and potential attack is made much easier, though, when we live consistently and true to our core values at all times and when we really have nothing to hide!