We are just days away from the General Election and this blog is definitely not going to get political at this late stage. However, the Question Time debate last night made for very intriguing viewing. It put journalism and not just the three party leaders in the hotseat.
For weeks we have been listening to journalists interviewing a wide range of different politicians. We have heard standard replies, the politicians avoiding answers and of course some questions never being asked. This is what made allowing an audience of the public to ask the questions so exciting.
People don’t follow journalistic conventions and have nothing to lose. They don’t have relationships to protect which mean they ‘go easy’ on political leaders. In fact all they have is a desire to get the truth and to have the question answered. Of course, they are also prepared to say when they think honesty is missing or a question is being fudged. It was quite refreshing viewing.
I quite want to see Prime Minister’s questions take on a whole new interactive element where members of the public are given the chance to raise queries on the issue of the day. There would be no holding back and perhaps we would get a new style of politics to take us forward. One where truth and honesty are central because people could so easily be found out.
After all you can fool some of the people some of the time but on the evidence of last night you certainly can’t fool all of the people. I hope we see more opportunities for members of the public to be able to openly challenge politicians both in the media and on social media.