BRONWYN Bishop deserves no sympathy from anyone.
The arrogance with which she "offended her office and (lack of) common sense", as The Sydney Morning Herald described it warranted her sacking as the Speaker, not probation.
Further, if there was a shred of decency and respect for the Parliament the Liberal Party would mark her down for retirement from pre-selection at the next election with no departing “gift” for so-called long service, such as an ambassadorship.
Bishop, of course, has not been alone in rorting expenses even if there is the thin line of technicality that legally there might not be a case to answer, but her completely unnecessary helicopter charter falls within the rapidly mounting lack of respect by taxpayers on either side of the political landscape for those elected representatives within Australia's federal and state parliaments who are bereft of good judgement and contempt for electors.
Under the heading, "(Mike) Baird speaks for us all", in The Sydney Morning Herald, the NSW Premier said: "I am sick of politics in this country".
Journalist Sean Nicholls wrote: "Baird has given voice to the frustration routinely expressed in households throughout Australia when they witness the policy atrophy that is the inevitable consequence of hard politics trumping genuine debate"; or, as Baird put it, "the point scoring, fear and smear".
Australia Business Council head, Catherine Livingstone, said this week in the midst of the Bishop mess and squabbling by both state and federal leaders about the GST, there "is a new low in political leadership inAustralia".
Livingstone said leadership's job was to ensure constructive and well informed debate, not to undermine that in the cause of party political positioning.
Bishop was supposed to uphold genuine debate.
Instead, she ruled, as The Canberra Times editorialised: "With partiality and willingness to eject Opposition MPs over the slightest transgression".
More than 400 MPs ejected in her term, 90 per cent from Labor.
The British House of Commons modus operandi says: "The Speaker ... must remain politically impartial at all times".
Bishop has not.
Her helicopter escapade is symptomatic of a decline in parliamentary and representative standards and leadership which applies equally to PM Tony Abbott and Leader of the Opposition, Bill Shorten.
It could be suggested the Governor-General, Sir Peter Cosgrove is in the wrong job.
It is his style of authority, command and inspiration that is required right now as PM.
Then there is the problem of over-governance - one too many layers of government.
To which could be added the current federal ministry of 42 ministers and parliamentary secretaries (not counting one MP who has two separate jobs), a gross overkill of "jobs for the boys and girls".
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