Dear Bob,
I enjoyed your "The Way I See It" Orange City Life July 07 - 13.The four issues you raised, which describe the shortcomings in the Australian Electoral System could not be better put.

I have heard it said frequently, "if you cannot lie convincingly then you can not become a successful politician".

From an academic point of view, a lie is only a lie when it is proved to be a falsehood. The complaint that Labor has lied over the Medicare issue, made  before the election, could only be proved as such, after the election.

We have to admit that no one could know the Prime Minister's true intentions in this regard, before the election. As some of Shakespeare's quotations suggest, people who protest a denial too strongly are hiding a falsehood. That is how the Prime Minister came across to many people. Several similar situations in the past have occurred, a statement before an election turns out to be a down right lie, after the election. It is therefore impossible to know or to be able to verify the true intentions of the Prime Minister, who is, let's face it, is a very powerful figure in determining government policy, after the election.

On the question of misleading the voting public (lying), the same can be said of the Australian Electoral Commission, which resolutely and definitively stated that to have a formal vote counted, on the Senate ballot paper, then 6 boxes above the line must be numbered serially 1 to 6, otherwise, the vote will be counted informal.

Various reputable sources, media included , dispelled this claim asserting emphatically, if only one box is numbered then the vote will still be formal, This insistence of the AEC was also evident, even at the Polling Booth, with the clerk, when issuing the papers, giving  the same official spiel, 6 boxes must be numbered. 

It is true that in normal life, for we poor mortals, business marketing etc. and making false claims (lying), can have the case tested in a court of law. Never the less, we hear consistently for instance that a product (there are many) kills 99.9% of germs, a quite spurious and unsubstantiated, persistent claim. Then there is the case of the "Special Oxygen" advertisement. Any high school student knows there is only one Oxygen O2,  perhaps then, isotopes are added. However, O3 (Ozone) is toxic. If there are additives in "SpecialOxygen" which are not declared, that also is misleading advertising.
 Is it any wonder that we lose faith in politics and the law?


 With kind regards,


Bill Barwood
Canowindra
16 July 2016