There are two conclusions to why we could be different and promote "populist" policies that people actually wanted, but when in government had to take different decisions from the ones we were voted in for.
a) There is a disconnect between the people and their representatives. What the people want (low tax, more public services) is not achievable.
b) What people want is achievable but because the establishment only exists to protect itself, when people get into power they only do what suits them and the establishment/lobbyists etc.
I think it's probably a lot a) and a little bit b) but the public in general think it's a lot b). In order to align what the public want with what is achievable, then we need to explain more, educate more, so that what people want is more achievable. The narrative of community politics, and indeed decision making, balancing, opportunity cost and whatever else people need to understand how the government works, should be the answer - I fear it's a little too subtle and not aligned to any particular power base for anyone to give a stuff tho.
Props to anyone who knows the title's origin