As we head to the polls this Saturday here in NSW, it’s worth remembering that old saying: the more things change, the more they stay the same.
And politics is no exception.
Last time, in 2011, we threw out a 16 year old Labor Government and hardly anything changed.
Sure, the new government completed a railway line or two and an expressway widening or three, but there was no serious improvement in our day to day lives.
Life went on, despite having a new mob with their hands on the levers of power in Macquarie Street.
Out here in the “sticks’’ of Liverpool and Macarthur, we are mostly a pragmatic lot who have learned to roll with the punches that come our way.
No matter which politicians are in charge, the fair and equitable resources we need are given to us like a drip feed – drip, drip, drip. It’s at the sort of rate where it will take 500 years for us to have the same infrastructure and health and education services they take for granted in the salubrious eastern suburbs of Sydney.
And don’t for a moment think that 500 years is just hyperbole. We may get lucky in those next five centuries and get one or two politicians who can bring about real change. Then we may save a couple of hundred years or three.
It’s not just that the system is so slow – the wheels hardly turn forward – it’s heavily geared against change.
Nobody likes to bring up this east versus west factor, but it’s true, and it’s nurtured by dimwit politicians who argue that if X amount of dollars are spent on a hospital in Campbelltown they must come out of some government service in Double Bay.
It’s the old, if there have to be winners, well, there’s going to be losers.
It’s rubbish, but that’s what you get from lazy, good for nothing thinking.
What we need in this good country to make it great are people who offer smart solutions to difficult problems.
We want candidates who promise they will move heaven and earth in trying to get the wheels of government to actually move.
Now there’s a candidate I think most of us would vote for, no matter which party they are attached to. That would be irrelevant.
Voting for a candidate on his or her merits – that sounds more like the kind of democracy we should have, instead of the predictable, two party cock fight we have every four years to decide which mob will sleep walk through the next four years.
In America, they may have voluntary voting, but the people also get to choose who can be a candidate at elections.
It’s called the “primaries’’ and maybe it’s time we started using that here. There have been a couple of these primaries held here in the past couple of years, but the time has come to introduce them across the board.
It would make a good start to a brand new democracy, the kind that actually works in fixing problems and coming up with great ideas.
If we had it in time for Saturday, instead of choosing between Tweedle-dee and Tweedle-dum we could have the exciting option of voting for a great next four years or an even greater next four years.
It will just depend on how much excitement we are willing to handle.