I'm a private citizen working for a publicly listed company. We mine stuff. We manufacture stuff. We sell stuff. We distribute stuff. Somewhere in amongst all of that, we employ a lot of people, add a lot of value, and make a bit of money. We are not a monopoly. There are competitors, and they want what we have: a solid business model and the largest share of the domestic market.
In order to remain in business, we have to do our jobs well. We simply cannot spend our days snarking our competitors, whinging and whining, trying to undermine them to feed the increasingly hungry 24 hour news cycle. The way to beat the competition isn't about ego or volume or tearing down the competitors. It's about consistent performance, getting results and (dare I say it?) building loyalty.
Why should politics be different? More to the point, why do politicians think that the rules that apply in life are different to the rules that apply in government?
If this Government wants to win back the voters who have deserted them, they have to have products we want to buy. That's policy. They have to deliver results - that's legislation. They have to earn trust, rebuild relationships, deserve respect.
So here's my suggestion to Julia Gillard and her team: ignore the Opposition. Do not allow Mr Abbott to continue to control the agenda or the tone of politics in this country. Ignore the ongoing Craig Thomson and Peter Slipper scandals. They're not your problem. Stop feeding the tabloid media.
Focus on your core business: making good decisions for Australia. There's no guarantee that it will get you re-elected, but the current shenanigans is more like a pair of toddlers fighting in the sandpit than a respectable government of a civilized country. The tantrums are not working, they're not even dignified, and we're sick of it. At least if you govern well and with dignity, you can hold your heads up.
I challenge the Gillard government to reverse the death spiral. Stand up, do your job well, build your reputation, earn loyalty and respect.
This is what my employer expects of me and my colleagues, and I expect no less from my government.