Sunday, 1 July 2012

the Carbon Price Wars and our Politics

And so the battle lines have been drawn for the great Carbon Pricing debate - well debate is actually the wrong word - its more like a Laurel and Hardy film - or the old vauddville - lots of cream pies in faces and slap stick falls and slaps and nose tweaks  -

Pie in face

But really, what is the problem with an effort to clean up the environment by trying to encourage (through the cost) big companies to use alternative fuels or to have funds to use for the development of alternative energies?

Why shouldn't big companies pay? Why prefer the Liberal idea of taxpayer money paying? Money I am sure will come out of education, hospitals etc. But this is not the issue of this blog; rather its the use of invented words as tools.

Imbedded in the free for all that has become Australian Politics is the habit of using words as labels - Juliar is a prime example. It is a powerful tool that labels and imbeds an idea into the consciousness through word labeling. For the other side there is a new word NOalition that I read somewhere.  The idea is to take a negative word and attach it to the the opponent's name - if someone wanted to study this trend I'd suggest visiting a school-yard might be the best place to see this sort of inventiveness at its most brutal.

My wife has a story of  a boy she was driving (with his sister)  somewhere. In the back seat the voices raised and the boy told his sister (in an argument ) that she was "fat and ugly" and then, inspired, he shouted, "you're Fugly!"

 One of the political parties should hire this boy for their next political bun fight.

As  the two main parties continue to move towards the same middle ground, Politics becomes less and less about ideas, or rather - it is no longer about the ideas of what decisions we should make - it's now about labels, the ideas (usually negative) we can attach to our political opponents by the use of these words. Which Party best manages to denigrate its opponent though these labels will win.

So we have the Carbon Price wars or the Carbon Tax wars. We have the refugees or the boat people,
or the boat people or the queue jumpers and so forth.

The beauty of these labels is that people are not expected to think about issues, rather they can emotionally respond -  for example, as Alan Jones so banally put it - Beware the witchcraft of climate science!

Leave me my name

Yes this is not new - the crowd frenzy has been used since crowds first formed.  Perhaps this is what is wrong with Politics in Australia - It has become a hunt for the best slogan, a slogan not about an idea but a slogan designed to denigrate - to point the finger and shout as loudly as possible, "Witchcraft!" or "Gay!" or  "Muslim!" or "Illegal Immigrant!"

It  is far easier to cry "Fugly" - just ask that little boy -

than to ask "Why is this happening?' or "What needs to be done"?

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