If I were Prime Minister: Then and now

Our mistakes live forever online – but there have always been ways to capture moments that will haunt us.

Many issues from the 2001 election are still relevant today - even if we've all grown up a little.

Many issues from the 2001 election are still relevant today - even if we've all grown up a little.

At 10 I was, apparently, an aspiring author, vet and Liberal voter, with no idea an opinion piece would come back to bite me nearly two decades on.

If I’m honest, I don’t remember writing it. But re-reading it, I’m not surprised at how much my views have changed – I’m surprised at their persistence.

To be fair, I think I was a Liberal fan because then-member Gary Nairn turned up to my primary school a lot, and I didn’t know any other politicians. Smart move Gary.

I haven't achieved "total world peace" yet, but I have joined the Kiama Independent team, which is a close second. Image: Rebecca Fist.

I haven't achieved "total world peace" yet, but I have joined the Kiama Independent team, which is a close second. Image: Rebecca Fist.

But 10-year-old me’s desire to improve our environment, fund our public schools, support the disadvantaged and improve health care are still on my political wish list.

The biggest shift was my ideas about responsibility.

At 10, I thought increased fines for littering was the best way to keep plastics out of our environment.

Now, I wonder if maybe manufacturers should produce less of them.

At 10, I thought funding charities to support people with serious illness or disability was the best way to help.

Now, I think we need better health infrastructure and to fund research, so charities like these are done out of a job.

At 10, I thought supporting zoos was the best way to save endangered animals.

Now, I wonder if we could live and work in a way that doesn’t wipe species out.

I’m no closer to being Prime Minister than I was at 10 - and no closer to being a vet (the reality of seven plus years of uni was a bit overwhelming for someone with the attention span of a gnat).

But I’m still a big fan of the world peace idea. And it probably wouldn’t be a bad move to put seat belts on buses. 

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