Friday, December 08, 2006

Death by PowerPoint for politicians

I've vented before about the horror that is PowerPoint so I was initially troubled when I read reports of plans to use this tool of Satan for presentations during "question time" in Australia's parliament. At first glance, this is a disaster waiting to happen: pairing the evil of politics with the evil of a really bad slide presentation. But then I realised this isn't about politicians inflicting Death By PowerPoint on the public, this is about politicians giving slide presentations to other politicians.

All of a sudden, I'm in favour of this proposal. Is there any more justified punishment than politicians having to sit through a speech from other politicians while they run through an endless series of pointless slides droning on in that characterless way politicians are so fond of? This feels like payback, people!

I want to get a job working in parliament where I get to create presentations for the pollies. I would get endless job satisfaction by creating mind-numbing presentations that ran into hundreds of slides knowing those bastard politicians were going to have to sit through the whole thing.

In all seriousness, this idea that PowerPoint actually improves communication must be stopped. There is a truly horrifying story that the Bush Administration actually used PowerPoint to develop and "communicate" their disastrous plans for the colossal clusterfuck that is Iraq. That would explain a lot. I don't like to make light of how badly this can go wrong because this is literally Death by PowerPoint for thousands of unfortunates.

A good communicator doesn't need Powerpoint but could, if they were so disposed, make effective use of it as a supporting tool. A bad communicator is made worse when they use PowerPoint to try and cover the fact that they have fuck-all of intelligence to say. The idea of political policy being communicated by PowerPoint is awful, pure and simple.

Stop the madness.

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