When I was a much younger man studying at an undergraduate level, one subject was Organisational Behaviour, essentially an understudy of business psychology principles. We studied the writings of a Professor Peter, a psychologist, who described the ‘Peter Principle’ which stated that in time people rise to their level of incompetence, and the corollary to that is that in time all public offices become occupied by people incapable of the role.
It is evident in recent history that a person can hold the Prime Minister’s office, yet not have the qualities of leadership required for the role eg Julia Gillard, Kevin Rudd, Malcolm Turnbull. We have seen but a few true prime ministers such as Hawke and Howard in the recent history of the nation, scattered among the many incumbents. Turnbull may have had a good career behind him, I think he’s so lost the plot and is now at the level Peter describes.
We can see how politicians enter the scene with definite views, but are soon brought to heel by the vested interests of the public service. Governments come and go, but all are continually advised by people of fixed tenure, at their own level of incompetence.
That is why I believe all public office holders and bureaucrats should serve no more than 10 years or 2 terms of office. In private enterprise it is often seen that people with capacity and capability take redundancy when offered, and re-establish themselves in a better position, leaving the less capable to run the shows. In private enterprise the smarter and more astute persons are sent on investment missions and trade delegations. Yet the recent Free
Trade Agreements were managed by a politician with a self-declared history of mental illness, who knows what he was thinking at the time? As a graduate of the NSW Institute of Psychiatry I’m all for equal opportunity, but with safeguards. The deals were signed off without public scrutiny. Australia is being pimped off and sold off, with no recourse to the disenfranchised who care.
Now the Trans Pacific Partnership is going down with no-one except the negotiators knowing what is in the agreement. As we go recklessly down the path of downgrading Australia’s sovereignty in the name of political correctness and become subservient to the dictates of the UN, World Trade Organisation, World Heritage Organisation and so on ad nauseum among other interests, what can we do as individuals to reverse the decisions of the political drongos?
One can only hope as we enter the election phase that we don’t create an opportunity to ‘drongify’ the High Court, or some embassy, as it appears a natural political progression to move people sideways, promoting them ‘out of the way’. As we entertain the idea of another election I will change my vote from pro-liberal to national as I certainly don’t want the incompetence of another labour ‘government’ and don’t trust independents to actually be independent.