Friday, November 9, 2007

The Importance of Absolute Authority

I'll admit that's a frightening title, but let me elaborate...

Why does any political party have a reason to be honest?

There are a number of reasons: if voters discover dishonesty you may lose votes in the next elections, or you may have a stampeding protest outside your parliament. Then there's the media, snooping around all the time, splashing frontpage headlines across national media.

But beyond that, as evident with the ANC, you can get away with quite a lot, and if you stand behind barriers like the race card, you can get away with even more.

The critical standard here is what kind of authority does the party hold itself up to at election time? Service to the people? The mandate of the people? As you can imagine, these create plenty of room for shifting goalposts.

In contrast, the ACDP uses the Bible as its absolute authority, despite being under considerable pressure to abandon that stance in order to win more votes. Now there are of course grey areas that can't be determined from the Bible, such as certain aspects of economic policy, but others don't move. The Bible is a tough plumbline and even by its own definition nobody has risen completely to its standards. This is very good news for voters who can hold the government up to its own immovable standard. What some may see as a yoke can work out as a blessing.

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