OPINION

Have some dignity, at last

It’s about time our politicians took a more responsible stance toward the media. Deputies of all stripes have at different times cultivated or, at best, tolerated obvious wrongdoing, ranging from the non-payment of social security contributions to serious violations of town-planning regulations. Prime ministers and their ministers have often rushed to make disclosures that have later proved to be unfounded. Some deputies can be seen participating on television shows of poor taste. Others brag of having been elected to Parliament thanks to their regular TV appearances. In the end, they’d rather be held accountable to a television show than to their party or Parliament. It’s not enough for the prime minister to claim that he will not give in to pressure from special interest groups. Ministers, deputies, judiciary officials and state officials must show a similar attitude. That’s the only way to break the vicious circle of small and large extortion, ranging from state ads to the covering up of fuel and arms smuggling – extortion that our political establishment has tolerated, if not exploited, for years.