Dishonesty the new transparency?

Andrew L. Urban

Labor leader Anthony Albanese wouldn’t answer (three times, like Peter the Apostle’s denial of knowing Jesus) whether a Labor government would raise taxes. Several female candidates under the dishonestly vague Voices Of umbrella (party?) claim to be standing as independents in the coming Federal election, joined at the climate hip, to seem cool. Why would they decline to reveal for which major party they would vote on supply in a hung parliament? A) they don’t know, b) they don’t want you to know…?

In a world where men can self-identify as women (I Am Woman Hear Me Grunt) to compete against women in elite sports, but the definition of a woman evades the most senior judges and health officials, it is not surprising that some aspiring politicians self-identify as ‘independent’ to compete with politicians who are honest about their political allegiance. (I don’t know how biological males justify to themselves – and feel proud of winning – when competing with biological females.)

The everyday word that describes such behaviours is ‘dishonesty’; this has become the defining characteristic of the green left and of identity-churning politics in general.

A headline on The Australian’s editorial (April 8, 2022) reflects the malaise: ‘Voters deserve authenticity from those who seek office’. It brings to mind the aphorism (paraphrased): if you can fake authenticity, you’ve got it made.

That the question of ‘authenticity’ aka honesty needs to be the subject of an editorial is depressing enough. The fact the editorial hardly scratches the surface of today’s political culture – throughout the western world – is frightening. We have stopped trusting much of the media due to its collective dishonesty thanks to, for example, the ABC and much of commercial media’s coverage (or not) of Russia/Trump collusion or the incriminating evidence on Hunter Biden’s laptop. The former topic excited the ABC into a massively expensive 3-part documentary they dubbed “the story of the century”, while they also swallowed the fake news that the latter was just Russian misinformation.

Those obvious examples are the tip of the dishonesty iceberg. I have always thought that dishonesty (sometimes fused to stupidity) and twisted language propels the new left’s entire social engineering agenda:

– Australia is systemically racist (evidence missing, assertion dishonest)

– If you deny that you are racist, that’s proof that you are racist (stupid)

– White privilege is like original sin – can’t be undone or atoned (misleading & stupid)

– Representation of science underpins left wing activism on climate change (dishonest, too many examples)

– Aboriginal deaths in custody are increasing (contradicted by facts – dishonest)

– People can choose their own gender, sex is a construct (contradicts their own gender quotas)

– ‘Equity’ means treating people quite differently, even prejudicially so, to even the playing field for our past sins of economic, social, political, and cultural inequity (fake equality)

– ‘Hate speech’ used to disparage ideological opponents (dishonest)

Ultimately, authenticity is about truth. The Stanford Encylopedia of Philosophy says that “To say that something is authentic is to say that it is what it professes to be, or what it is reputed to be, in origin or authorship.” It also states that “the characterization describes a person who acts in accordance with desires, motives, ideals or beliefs that are not only hers (as opposed to someone else’s), but that also express who she really is.” (In using ‘hers’, I don’t think the Encylcopedia is referring specifically to the Voices Of group of women, but in contemporary deference to those undefinable women as opposed to males. But no doubt its wisdom applies to males, too.)

It goes on to say: “Besides being a topic in philosophical debates, authenticity is also a pervasive ideal that impacts social and political thinking. In fact, one distinctive feature of recent Western intellectual developments has been a shift to what is called the “age of authenticity” (Taylor 2007; Ferrarra 1998). Therefore, understanding the concept also involves investigating its historical and philosophical sources and on the way it impacts the socio-political outlook of contemporary societies.” There follows a list of references.

In the Australian political context, the Voices Of (they don’t finish the phrase for obvious reasons – keep options open) must have forgotten, if they ever knew, that the list of most successful politicians, so called conviction politicians, begins with the likes of Bob Hawke and John Howard. So if ‘fighting Tories’ is what Albanese ‘does’, or did, why deny that integral part of his political ideology now? I think we all know the answer and ‘authentic’ is not part of it.

At the smorgasbord of the 2022 election, voters might be found exploring the selection on offer, mumbling to themselves, “I don’t vote for liars.”







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