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2CH news comments

What makes a good politician?

#895 for broadcast on 2CH Sydney, 25 May 2014.

Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott has attracted strong criticism from opponents who point to inconsistencies between his promises to voters before last year’s federal election and what his government is actually doing – especially on health, education, tax and foreign aid.

I’m willing to allow for the fact that, in our high-pressure fish-bowl media sound-bite saturated world, even the most seasoned and competent politicians will occasionally contradict themselves, or make a false statement, or forget their lines.

But at the end of the day, it’s not what they said but how they respond to their gaffes and untruths that matters, and that goes to personal character. And that, ultimately, is what makes a good or a bad politician.

Some of those hastily spoken words also speak to character — and not just the character of politicians, but the character of people who desire sound-byte political discourse.

I’m Rod Benson for the NSW Council of Churches.

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