I was saddenned to read that my neighbouring (and, when boundaries allowed, local) MP John Murphy felt constrained by family reasons to resign from his Parliamentary Secretariat. As one who’s personally on the other side of the political fence, I can say that throughout his time as an MP Mr Murphy has consistently acted for his constituents and the wider community in a principled and dignified fashion.
My own dealings with Mr Murphy have largely been through the NSW Right to Life Association (in which I am locally active). Facing enormous pressure, Mr Murphy has stood steadfastly in defence of the vulnerable. As such (and for various other qualities), I salute him and wish both he and his family well for the future.
Deogolwulf has posted his translation of Prince Klemens Wenzel von Metternich‘s political testament here.
The following bits from it caught my attention for a moment, but I might remark later:
…..For me the word “freedom” has not the value of a starting-point, but rather that of an actual point of arrival. The word “order” denotes the starting-point. Only on the concept of order can that of freedom rest. Without the foundation of order, the call for freedom is nothing more than the striving of some party after an envisaged end. In its actual use, the call inevitably expresses itself as tyranny. Whilst I have at all times and in all situations ever been a man of order, my striving was addressed to true and not deceptive freedom. In my eyes, tyranny of any kind has only the value of absolute nonsense. As a means to an end, I mark it as the most vapid that time and circumstance is able to place at the disposal of rulers.
Affairs are the expression of the men who have influence on them. Concepts, be they slight or grave, refer not just to the nature of affairs; the peculiarities and features thereof, which are called into action in negotiations, must also be taken into fundamental consideration. In no course of affairs do these truths express themselves more forcefully than in the field of government.
The two worst arrangements affecting public administration are preconceived systems and personal considerations. The first contend with praxis; the latter put petty and transitory considerations in the place of substantive ones.
David Flint recalls a valiant life herein.
John Reilly herein discusses briefly a perceived relation between aspects of some types of religious environmentalism and past forms of popular piety. Somewhat worth a look, as is the rest of his eclectic site.
Filed under Ethics, Religion
Today’s report that a certain MP failed in his application for membership in a branch within his Federal Electoral Conference has predictably been greeted with howls of outrage from interested parties.
Without reference to the specifics of Mr Morrison’s case, I’ll note that it is crucial for effective functioning of branches that their respective ethos is acknowledged by prospective members. In particular, perceptions of petty ambition need to be addressed by applicants; also, one regrets to note that questions of external stature are (or at any rate ought) be irrelevant to assessing an applicant’s fitness for membership. In my capacity as Treasurer of Haberfield Branch in the Liberal Party, I may note that (ceteris paribus) I’d consider (say) a former High Court Justice equally eligible for membership of my branch to a dustman. Indeed, considerations of appearance would, if anything, require me to do my utmost in order to avoid perceptions of favouritism arising to those who would, by virtue of their status, be seen as potentially in a position to pull strings.
Andrew Errington has just completed a series of posts entitled “Jesus and Government.” Well worth a look.
The PDF transcripts of the three O’Donovan New College Lectures referred to earlier are now available to download from here. As that page notes, the MP3’s thereof should be available therein soon.
Edited to add: they are (h/t: Erro.)