Contagious Idealism

Musings of a young politician on motivation, loyalty, bruised egos and the way politics should really be.

If I had it my way, politicians should only be politicians for the people. Just as how doctors are in medicine because they want to save lives and lawyers are who they are because they want to fight for justice. And people who are in the police force should be there because they want to fight crime, and not just to drink in the power they hold wearing that uniform and badge or indulge in the vast opportunities to receive “tea money.”

If the motivation is earning money or desire for power then they should not be in the field, and they would be doing us all a favour by staying out.

Rene Magritte "The False Mirror"

Rene Magritte "The False Mirror"

Politicians make and argue policies for the people and the country. Their main intention should be for the welfare of the people. Being in politics, knowing objectively that the other candidate would be a better person to hold that position so as to serve the people, you should give way for the better man.

You should not expect favours and use your “loyalty” to emotionally threaten for a position. The fact that you have stuck around for 10 or more years, should not be the main criteria for you getting the job. You get the job if you deserve it, by merit!

If we are truly advocating for a merit-based system, then the mindset that “because you have been loyal therefore you deserve a position” needs to change! It may be easier said than done – wallowing in the fact that you have given up so much in the fight and yet, because you do not get a position, you obviously feel unappreciated. Then again, you should put the people first! It is not about you or your self-esteem or ego – it is about the people! So what if you have been fellow comrades? You fought because you believe in the cause, the cause to bring about a better Malaysia!

Really, I am not just talking about the leaders here. The grassroots too should not be spared! Why do you volunteer to hang flags? Why do you join in the demonstrations? Why would you travel to Hulu Selangor everyday during the week of the campaign? Why would you sacrifice your sleep and suffer a whole day at work the next? Why would you run errands on your own expense for the party? Do you expect to be awarded contracts in the future? Do you expect a position in future?

If I had it my way, these people should do us all a favour and get out of politics. The detriment would be more painful than the benefit you bring! If someone who enters the party and rises in the ranks faster than you do, slap yourself and be happy because that person may well be a better person to do the job than you!

Similarly, if the ruling coalition passes a policy that is wise and good for the people, the opposition party should not object or go against it for the sake of going against everything the ruling coalition does. It is okay if the opposition stays the opposition, as long as they manage to deny 2/3 majority from the ruling coalition. Absolute power is never good for anyone, no matter how credible or reliable you are.

A politician must always keep in mind that you are there for the people. So, if I had it my way, a politician should only be in politics because they sincerely want to serve the people.

Then again, if I had it my way, we would all benefit from world peace as advocated by countless Miss Universe throughout the decades and Mid Valley mall would be void of shoppers on weekends so I don’t have to fight with the catty neighbourhood aunty for parking.

Until then, I guess I will continue to daydream and hope that idealism like mine will be contagious.

See Also:

  • LoyarBurokker Eunice Ong’s very popular 10-day Hulu Selangor Diary where she chronicled her journey as a political campaigner. Read Day 1 here.

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Posted on 7 July 2010. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0.

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