Fear mongers belittle politics and humanity

Here’s my latest piece for The King’s Tribune…

Fear is a fascinating thing. It’s fairly easy to initiate, can sometimes be used to motivate, and can bring out the best or worst in any of us. Right now, it’s being used against us for craven political purposes.

Fear motivates some people to wear a seat-belt, insure their house, take their medication, run from a person brandishing a knife, or perform heroic feats to save loved ones. It can also cause people to be prejudiced, belligerent, aggressive, or perhaps even trample others while trying to escape danger.

Fear is a powerful emotion, and it’s used daily by companies, governments, political operatives and the media to influence our behaviour.

While the tabloid media are best known for playing the fear card, politicians now seem to be trying to trump them. The Greens proclaim that devastation will soon be wrought by dangerous climate change; the Coalition foretells the doom that will befall us from the carbon tax; and the ALP warns about the apocalypse that will come with the ascension of Prime Minister Abbott.

Added to this, we’re cautioned about mining magnates, asylum seekers, newspaper proprietors, rabid Christians, vampiric bosses, a burst housing bubble and another global economic meltdown.

It’s no wonder the Australian citizenry has become anxious and seeks solace amongst the glittering halls of Westfield Plazas scattered thoughtfully around the country. Perhaps the public’s whinging and wringing of hands, attributed by many to our selfish sense of entitlement, actually arises from our confidence being battered by fear-mongers on a daily basis.

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