As a new public servant I have discovered what I would call the ‘baseline’ person. They don’t seek to challenge the status quo, they all seem to desire the ‘normal’ life – a house, two cars a pool out on the city fringe. If you tell them you did anything out of the ordinary is immediately received with absolute shock. Mountain biking – shock. “Isn’t that dangerous?” You have longish curly hair – shock. You eat rice that comes wrapped in a leaf – shock. (insert anything that hasn’t recently been on Today Tonight here) – shock.
I am going somewhere with this. Public servants seem to be, either by selection or through indoctrination, reluctant to challenge anything. Also, given the ‘worker’ mentality and fairly widespread unionism, I would suggest that most would be Labor voters.
This leads me to two interesting conclusions.
1. The reluctance to challenge things make them highly likely to vote for the sitting political party, and
2. if that political party is Labor, then the this likelihood is greatly increased.
Therefore, there is a self-fulfilling process happening. Labor governments by their nature prefer more government intervention, thus need a larger government. The more people they employ, the more voters they get indoctrinated, thereby reinforcing their position.
When a challenging party that believes in small government comes along, there is a massive pool of workers who, now indoctrinated, also feel like there job is threatened if the government is going to downsize.
Maybe this goes some way to explaining the Labor dominance in the States. Maybe it helps to explain the failure to get widespread support to dispose of States altogether. There are 1.3million State employees in the country, but only 400,000 employees in the federal and local governments combined.
Then again, maybe I have just seen a representative sample of a much broader population. Given that I have spent the past 10 years on the fringes, rather than in ‘mainstream’ society, this might just be my first real introduction to the silent majority, the baseline person.