Politics

Politics
As a soon-to-be-minted Australian citizen, I’ve been taking a greater interest in politics. I think it may be time to join a political party. This morning I checked out the websites of the three main options I’m considering: Labor, the Greens, and the Democrats. I have to say, the big picture of Kim Beazley “tearing up” Industrial Relations laws put me right off Labor. It’s just so clichéd and ridiculous. Yeah, I know they’re the only party with even half a chance of knocking out the Liberals, but somehow they just don’t appeal to me. (Sorry, Peter.) It took me too long to find their platform details on their website and when I did, they were incredibly long and boring. The Democrats were better (and definitely have the best website), but I found their list of party objectives really vague and hippy-dippy. That leaves the Greens, who up til now I’d pictured as simply raving Greenpeace types. But hang on! Their little “Policy Snapshot” booket is surprisingly readable! It has actual plans in it! I like that. And I agreed with nearly all their positions. (I can’t understand this whole fear of GM foods. Bring on the synthetic meat, I say!) So it looks like I might be a Green. Anybody want to try to sway me either way?

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  1. Well, I don’t know anything about Aussie politics, but I like to remain G.D.I. (as I did after college sorority rush), so would recommend that option. This way you can actually vote for a person, not a platform. Yes, I find that I consistently vote for members of one party, but I will never join it; I have to keep my options open.

    Okay, enough of my rant, but you did ask for swaying efforts, and I am a policy wonk in training…

  2. What is GDI? What is a sorority rush? Whatever they are, I don’t think they exist in Aussie politics. You can always vote for a person, surely? On the other hand, in NZ you get two votes: one for a person and another for a party. It’s a complicated system, but briefly any party that gets 5% or more of the vote gets some members in the house to join the ones who won in the other part of the ballot, which is first past the post. It’s called MMP (mixed member proportional) and is based in the German system. http://www.elections.org.nz/mmp/two_ticks_too_easy.html

  3. I know what a sorority rush is, but “GDI” baffles me too. (“God Damn Independent”?) I don’t need to join a party here. I just think I may want to. There are some issues I feel strongly about and I’d like to help get them happening. Not to mention the fact that the current government really shits me, and I’d like to do more than just vote to get them out.

  4. Nope! Green is good, but it ain’t easy being one πŸ˜‰ Just watch where their preferences go in some of the elections though, at times they can be a little wonky.

  5. I vote Green too. I used to vote Democrat, until they imploded a few years ago. And then I discovered that Bob Brown is totally awesome, and I want him as my Prime Minister. I preference to the Dems and Labor, or whichever Independent I like — I don’t really follow the “How to vote” forms they hand out regarding preferences.

  6. No swaying from me either. I’m with Crumpet here. The Greens are a good party at the moment. Let’s hope they don’t go the way of the Democrats….

  7. Many of the Greens are fruitloops, but Bob Brown is a legend and truly has the most guts and integrity of any Australian politician. I love Bob Brown! (even though he’s gay and will never love me in return πŸ™

  8. First of all, congratulations on becoming a citizen. As for political parties…meh, they’re all corrupt. I think you can do a lot of good for the causes you feel strongly about without actually joining one.

  9. Didn’t mean to be confusing with the GDI bit; Kris, you got it right.

    Good luck picking a party or finding an advocacy group or organization for those particular issues you’re passionate about!

  10. I started to leave a quick comment – but it became a long blog post πŸ™‚

    http://lara.nettle.org/blog/2006/08/05/about-the-greens

    Can’t claim I’m not biased πŸ˜‰

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