This post has slowly been developing in my computer for a while. Polishing Politics was the original title. Then I thought, “Politics needs far more than polishing!”
So I thought to change the title to something along the lines of Reforming Politics or Recreating Politics. But that’s less poetic.
Then upon a little additional thought, this one: “Perhaps polishing is the best we can hope for politics anyway.”
I decided to leave the original title.
I’m no politician (though I think I’d make an excellent one). Keep all of that in mind as you consider the advice I have to offer politicians and the political class.
- If you’ve called on someone else to resign for something, resign when you are guilty of that same thing or something similar.
- Limit your years of elected political service to the number of years equaling one third your age at the time you were first elected.
- Read any legislation in full before you vote for it. Otherwise, vote against it.
- Give away your own money with a generosity directly proportionate to your generosity with public funds.
- Relate to constituents, lobbyists, and fellow politicians from the depth of your own character, not on the level of their own moral or spiritual corruption.
- Always put people before party.
- Always put principle before people and party.
- Remember you’re in office primarily because of divine appointment.
- Know the Constitution with the commitment and practice of analyzing and interacting with all legislation and legislative activity within its framework.
- If you can’t be a faithful, country-first representative of the people, get out.
- Never lie or cover up or turn a blind eye for anyone or anything.
- Keep in close touch with and be available to your constituents.
- Say what you believe; believe what you say. Or be quiet.
- Beware of power. Beware of money. Beware of politicians.
That list could go on and on. But I quit.
All those points sound less like adjusting a system and more like fixing those who use and engage the system.
It’s not politics that needs the polishing. It’s the politicians!
And that means we can go deeper than a mere surface polish.
Come to think of it, my points above speak to far deeper issues than those which are merely cosmetic. Or political.
Fix the heart…and the surface will shine!
And that applies equally well to those of us out of politics.