Opinion

At the end of the day, politicians are just people

I DON'T particularly like Tony Abbott. But that doesn't mean he's a bad person.

I just don't know.

We all know Tony can be prone to a little PR gaffe from time to time, not least of all his infamous sex worker wink which took the media by storm this week.

Now, Mr Abbott himself would realise his mistake.

But the ferocity with which we the public have pounced on the "he's a

horrible man" bandwagon is nothing short of ridiculous.

For someone who spends his entire life in the public spotlight, any remote level of privacy is going to instinctively let in some level of relaxation.

Regrettably, our PM misunderstood the level of privacy he actually had.

I'm not for a second excusing his making light of someone's desperate measures to make ends meet.

But when it comes to our politicians, let's just be a little more sensitive to the fact that they're human beings.

As I sat watching a special budget edition of the ABC's Q&A earlier this week, a few realisations sprang to mind.

First I realised that I didn't know the first thing about how these budget dooverlackies actually work.

I guess I won't be challenging for Joe Hockey's office anytime soon.

I was then enlightened with the knowledge that although the government is definitely asking for more money from taxpayers, they are definitely not asking for "a tax".

I guess I won't be paying any tax this year, I'll just give the government money.

And last, but certainly not least in more ways than one, was the fact that the people of Western Sydney seem to be very good at dealing with multiples of seven, especially when we're referring to the seven dollars per visit required for taking their three kids to the doctor once a week.

I guess I won't be moving to Western Sydney anytime soon; apparently there is a plague.

But as shocking as all these discoveries were, none quite shocked me as much as the fact that our Treasurer had evidently made much more vicious and personal discrepancies against the plagued people of Sydney than merely the whole budget fiasco.

I mean, why else would they have attacked his character as much as they did?

Don't get me wrong: I'm all for people voicing their opinions on the political side of things. That is, after all, sort of how this whole democracy thing works, and I'm just as guilty as anyone else.

That said, we can sometimes go too far on the personal scale. During what was supposed to be, precisely as the show's title suggests, a Q and A, Hockey was labelled as selfish, heartless and out of touch with ordinary Australian families.

These were labels that came without any knowledge whatsoever of Hockey's background or personality. Joe Hockey is a public figure. Like his colleagues, it's impossible for us to tell whether or not he's a nice bloke.

What we see onstage, onscreen and on the record is a façade… because it has to be. See, the one downside of having an opposition to government… is having an opposition to government.

Yes, we see bent truths.

Yes, we see policies we disagree with.

And yes, we see budgets - like our most recent one - which do have harsh ramifications for so many people.

But we don't necessarily see a bad person. Let's not just assume we're better.

Topics:  columns editors picks opinion politics tony abbott



How to do Eat Street the right way

EVERYTHING you need to know to get the most out of your Eat Street experience and to avoid a food coma when you’re only one stall deep.

Don’t go chasing waterfalls…find them on these drives!

The Scenic Rim is just one place nearby that you'll love.

BRISBANE isn’t all bright lights and city slickers.

Science Festival seriously awesome

Don't miss the World Science Festival Brisbane!

CALLING everyone who wants to see something totally cool.

Drink where the cool kids do this summer

There are a bunch of new bars open in Brisbane, make sure you're there!

CHECK out these new funky bars.

Discover Brisbane’s laneway gems

Brisbane's laneways will surprise you.

NOT all of Brisbane City is as it seems…

Top five things to experience this summer in Brisbane

Tangalooma is amazing if you're keen for a dive, kayak or swim.

THIS summer get out and explore your capital city.

Your boots are made for walking these tours

Brisbane Greeters tours are a great way to learn the local history of the city.

YOU don’t need a bike or bus for a seriously good tour of Brisbane.

New bridge taking shape

OVER TROUBLED WATER: Construction is coming along nicely on the new Monto-Mt Perry bridge.

Works to be completed mid 2017

New Guzman y Gomez drive-throughs coming to the regions

Guzman y Gomez wants to revolutionise drive-through.

New 'virtual drive-throughs' are coming to the regions

Truscott calls for staffing ratios at aged care facilities

Dr Jane Truscott.

"We owe it to our older citizens to look after them”

Local Partners

Un-American tale makes Lion weakest link in Oscars line-up

PSYCHOLOGY researchers find US films and actors most likely to win accolades at the Oscars.

Living End, Grinspoon stars hit stage for American Idiot

Chris Cheney of The Living End stars in the Australian production of Green Days musical American Idiot at Brisbane's QPAC Theatre.

TAKE a look behind the scenes of Green Day's American Idiot musical

Samuel L Jackson dismisses La La Land ahead of Oscars

Ryan Gosling and Emma Stone in a scene from the movie La La Land.

Hollywood actor and Oscars voter says Denzel should win top gong

Live performance of Sci-fi classic to open Science Festival

Qld Symphony Orchestra perform live to 2001: A Space Odyssey.

Festival will host A Live Presentation of 2001: A Space Odyssey.

Former Family Matters stare accused of child abuse

Reginald VelJohnson, left, and Darius McCrary arrive at the TV Land Awards on Sunday, April 19, 2009 in Universal City, Calif.

Darius McCrary has been accused of child abuse

Bindi Irwin's birthday tribute to her dad

Bindi Irwin

Bindi Irwin has paid tribute to her dad on his 55th birthday

The trick homeowners are using to buy more properties

Chantelle Subritzky leaves her home each week for Airbnb guests.

Queenslanders are going down this path to help pay their mortgages

Stunning home blends South Pacific beauty with Orient style

Immaculate residence with two outdoor living areas

$140k damage: landlord says property trashed, contaminated

He had what he calls "the tenants from hell"

Submarine, buses and 3000 tyres removed in $100K clean up

The list of things removed from this property is beyond astonishing

Ready to SELL your property?

Post Your Ad Here!