Wednesday, 23 September 2020 11:54

Consider your vote carefully

Written by  Farmers’ Chaplain, Colin Miller
Colin Miller. Colin Miller.

Farmers’ Chaplain, Colin Miller on who he's voting for. 

OPINION: Many times over the years I have been asked who I will be voting for. 

This has happened to me with both local and national elections. Obviously, my answer to that question has been tempered by who is asking the question, what their motives may be and the company we are in. 

Of course, I would be much more forthcoming and open with family. Or people genuinely seeking help and understanding than I would be with potential mischief makers. 

For the upcoming election, right at this moment, that question is easy for me to answer. Hey, just relax, I’m not about to tell you here in this public setting! The reason that question is easy to answer? I simply have yet to decide. I have not seen the names on the list of who is standing in our electorate yet. I guess, like many others, I am undecided as I write.

I’m not finding it easy though, I must admit. Ever the optimist, I’d like to think I can find someone to vote for who won’t lie to me. I know, I know, with today’s politics I probably have more chance of finding moa bones!

The decades’ old politician’s joke comes to mind: Q: How can you tell when a politician is lying? A: When their lips are moving!

Sadly, this old joke in my opinion has all too often actually been the truth. Survey after survey tells us, and has done for years, politicians are pretty much at the bottom of the barrel when it comes to who the public really trust.

Some would tell me I am being unrealistic, others may suggest I’m just too idealistic. After all, this is politics.

From my own leadership journey and studies over more than four decades, the leader’s greatest challenge, or test, will always be in leading themselves. If you regularly lie to yourself and those closest to you, it’ll be easy to lie to the voters. If I cannot trust you to lead yourself, then why should I trust you to lead me and my family?

Also, I’d like to think that just possibly I might find someone to vote for who actually really loves our country and its people. For me, that person would put our country’s good ahead of their own self-interest. Wouldn’t that be refreshing! Someone who can’t be bribed and is prepared to truly be accountable to the people of New Zealand. 

Back in March, when the lockdown was first announced, I commented that our MPs should take the lead and all take a 50% pay cut. Feel the pain yourself personally first, before all the job losses hit the folks out here.

In my opinion, that would have been good leadership. Again, I’m dreaming, some will think – wake-up Colin and join the 21st Century!

Outside of NZ, one of my favourite politicians from yesteryear was former US president, the late Ronald Reagan. I liked the fact he was not a career politician and I liked his forthrightness and his wit. A couple of timely quotes for you from Reagan: 

“The most terrifying words in the English language are: I’m from the government and I’m here to help.”

“As government expands, liberty contracts.”

I’m approaching the election prayerfully, as I mentioned in an earlier column. I should have it figured out by voting day. 

The Good Shepherd has always helped me unravel what I cannot and put together what I can’t. I especially like the fact he has never lied to me.

Get out and vote, and vote for what is important to you.

Keep well and God Bless.

To contact the Farmer’s Chaplain Colin Miller email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

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