Justice, morality and honesty should permeate every moment of one’s life. In our current situation where many of us live in parliamentary democracies, this is especially true for politicians. A politician is responsible for a lot of people. People turn to him for solutions. Thus, it is essential that he is fair in his decisions, makes no prejudicial discrimination against people, correctly identifies the needy and devises pertinent actions addressing their problems. While rendering his services for the public good, he should co-operate with experts and appoint qualified people who can get results. If he is able to find out the reasons for an interruption in a service, a politician should rapidly find viable solutions and make swift changes in his policies, if necessary. In the public’s best interests, he should have the skills to prioritize.
Nevertheless for some, rather than being a public service, politics has turned into a profitable industry. In this sense, in politics, someone is considered successful who keeps power, consolidates and secures it despite all unfavorable circumstances and, if possible, acquires more power. Once this becomes the usual way of politics, it is no surprise that all forms of corruption and fraud are structured into the system.
Everywhere, west and east, in developed as well as developing countries, it is possible to see that politics is fused with business. Thus, it is not uncommon to see examples of those who, abusing politics for personal benefit, risk their political careers or are forced from office following “shares for favors” scandals. In many authoritarian systems, leaders fund expensive tastes and indulge in extravagance while their people fight hunger and epidemic. Mobutu, the ousted president of Zaire, is a good example. While the Zairian people fought for a loaf of bread, every month Mobutu was sending his personal plane to France to fetch his coiffeur. He amassed a huge fortune, regarding all the natural resources and diamond mines of his country as his personal assets. Furthermore, he allowed western countries to benefit from this natural wealth of Zaire while his people experienced deteriorating economic circumstances and civic unrest due to tribal clashes.
No society is immune to such practices unless the Qur’an reigns. In irreligious communities, people hardly attach any meaning to concepts like justice, mercy, love, respect and honesty, since everyone pursues his own interests and shows unquenchable greed. In a verse, Allah stresses the dimensions of the threat such people pose to societies:
Whenever he holds the upper hand, he goes about the earth corrupting it, destroying (people’s) crops and breeding stock. Allah does not love corruption. (Surat al-Baqara: 205)
It is of no avail to expect any change in the aforementioned human characteristics as long as people do not adhere to the Book of Allah. However, in a country where people have fear of Allah and where conscience rules, miscarriages of justice and abuses of power are not allowed. The problems of people are diagnosed and treated properly and services work effectively. The rewards for public service rendered only to earn the good pleasure of Allah, the help extended only for His sake are expected not in this world, but in the Hereafter. Throughout history, Allah communicated the divine message to people through His messengers. These messengers only invited them to the religion of truth. However, the reactions of people to these messengers were disbelief and they often suspected hidden purposes behind their sincere efforts. The answers of the messengers to the disbelieving people were the same:
Say: ‘I do not ask you for any wage for it, nor am I a man of false pretensions.’ (Surah Sad: 86)
My people! I do not ask you for any wage for it. My wage is the responsibility of Him Who brought me into being. So will you not use your intellect? (Surah Hud: 51)
Those having faith in Allah follow the example of such conduct, which is praised in the Qur’an. They expect no worldly gain in any form in return for services and aid. In the political life of disbelieving societies, however, political issues, both internal and foreign, and personal/party interests are intimately linked. This being the case, political life has its fair share of rogues apt to take decisions contrary to public or national interest. The methods employed to ensure these circles’ support are public investments serving the best interests of particular interest groups, opening credits for them or simply ignoring corruption or fraud. The lobbying incorporated into the political system in the United States best explains how the system works. Huge sums of undisclosed donations are made to finance the election campaigns of candidates. The purpose is to secure a seat for someone in the Senate, someone who will steer the type of politics the donors favour. In one of its issues, The Economist dealt with the lavishly funded electoral campaigns in the USA stressing that in 1992 alone contributions amounted to 3 billion dollars. The Economist, 8 February 1997
Harun Yahya is a prominent Turkish intellectual.
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