May 31, 2004 | Jeff Wall

Self promotion can be a “slippery” slide for politicians.

THE Honourable Peter Slipper holds the seat of Fisher by a margin of almost 12 per cent – if he continues to put out extravagant, self indulgent, taxpayer funded propaganda then he will need at least that margin to survive the wrath of his electors.
The Courier Mail’s “Confidential” column today reported that in a four page “Slipper Report” there are no less than 20 photographs of the Honourable Member for Fisher, including one of Mr Slipper and his children.
As “Confidential” said – “somebody, make it stop”.
That “somebody” might be the good people of Fisher.
There are a number of Federal MP’s, and even Senators, who issues glossy taxpayer funded reports full of their own photos. I have seen several people reading these newsletters counting the number of photos while still at the mail box!
The public standing of politicians has never been lower – and it has slipped even further in recent weeks thanks to the indulgences of Senators Brandis, Mason and Stott-Despoya, and the hapless Trish Draper, MP.
If some politicians have not got the message that the public reacts very strongly to glossy taxpayer funded propaganda full of their own photos then they will simply never learn.
The Sunshine Coast Daily – the major newspaper circulating in the Fisher Electorate – has robust views on Mr Slipper’s performance as Member. It will no doubt pick up on this latest indulgence by its MP.
Those MP’s with good political sense exercise great care in how they prepare taxpayer funded propaganda. They keep photos of themselves to a minimum.
They do not include family shots.
The media has been targeting the printing allowances of Federal MP’s and Senators. I think the criticism is generally unfair – but the likes of Mr Slipper do their case great harm.
An MP is entitled to communicate with his constituents on matters of electoral and national (or state) interest. Many do so in a way that is informative and educational.
The minority, such as the Member for Fisher, go completely over the top, and undermine even further public respect for elected representatives at a time when it needs to be restored.
To include 20 self- photos in a four page newsletter is indefensible.
Just as a few rugby league players have dragged down the name of the game, and the standing of all players, there are a few politicians dragging down even further the standing of elected representatives – and the whole democratic process.
The current Member for Fisher is one of them.
If he is not careful, Slipper may be on a slippery slide to political oblivion.

Posted by Jeff Wall at 12:38 pm | Comments Off on Self promotion can be a “slippery” slide for politicians. |
Filed under: Uncategorized

No Comments

No comments yet.

RSS feed for comments on this post.

Sorry, the comment form is closed at this time.