Armchair exploration of the ethics of pork barrelling

Forum –

What we are seeing at ICAC is, for many of us watching, uncomfortable.

Who enjoys viewing an almost forensic public stripping of another’s private thoughts?

But what we are really seeing here is not voyeurism.

It is one of the most important aspects of our democracy put on public view.

It is a public presentation on state owned media of a calm, unemotional investigation of a possibly corrupt political matter involving our representatives and in this case a state leader.

It scrutinises a political problem that has ethical connotations.

ICAC is not bound by the traditional legal and political subterfuge habitually used to obfuscate this grey area.

However, ICAC does create an opportunity for the public to witness democracy in action from an armchair in their home – not merely political democracy but ethical democracy.

Although ‘corruption’ is apparently the critical word in ICAC, it could be argued that one of its major functions is to cast light on such associated ethical problems such as “pork barrelling”.

This is not a crime… or is it?

Certainly, there is no legislation against it.

Both major political parties have indulged in it since Noah but there is a stench around it and we can all smell it.

The public can now see this and make their own judgment – that there is now a possibility for unethical behaviour by politicians to be on show to their voters.

This is, if nothing else, a warning for our state politicians to be extra careful what they do in the future or perhaps they too will be publicly examined in the lounge rooms of public opinion.

No corruption, no crime.

Just… crucifixion.

Email, Nov 8
Ed Raftery, Davistown

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