Former Queensland ‘corruption fighter’, Tony Fitzgerald QC, comments via the ABC (13.7.17) on the demise of truly ‘representative’ politics in Australia, with politicians beholden to party interests ahead of public interest.
‘Democracy has largely been reduced to a contest between three dominant parties, two of which act in coalition.
‘Each is a private organisation with a small membership which primarily represents the interests — in particular the economic interests — of a section of the community.
‘They dominate public discussion and debate and one or other of them has governed Australia for more than 70 years.
‘They enacted the legislation that provides public funding based on past election results, giving them a major electoral advantage over other parties and independent candidates.
‘During that period, politics has been transformed from a public service to a career with a well-defined path for those who embrace the culture and authority of their chosen party, and accept that ideology and sectional interests are more important than the common good.
‘Winning is all that matters and “whatever it takes” is the basic rule.’