Nick Bryant articulates a prescription for political change, but facilitating that change necessitates a recognition by our politicians and populace that a reformation of our system, albeit in the behaviour, attitudes and structure of that system, is indeed critical to restore trust and faith in the system. It behoves all of us in the body politic to pressure our politicians to change, and to convince them that tame excuses are no longer acceptable, even tolerable.

But why is our system so dysfunctional and at crisis point? Because we, as ordinary voters, have permitted, with increasing cynicism and mistrust, the political charade to continue, our apathy and indifference unchallenged. Political experts can rant as they do, but it is an old cliché that people get the government they deserve. It is up to each of us to confront the reality that democracy is slipping into the shadows of our lives and unless we act in unison to demand reforms Bryant suggests, we can only blame ourselves for the farce in Canberra we too often only lambast in private.

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