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The anti-politicians are not helping

Anti-politicians are everywhere. Clive Palmer is the left’s current favourite anti-establishment politician because he is blocking some of Abbott’s nastier budget policies. Palmer has broken progressive hearts before, such as when he stood next to Al Gore and promised to help repeal the Carbon Tax only if it was changed into an ETS; he followed through on the repeal bit but failed to save the ETS. This time we’re all really hoping he sticks to his guns on higher education policy after disappointingly letting Abbott’s do-nothing Direct Action policy through today. It’s easy to forget, while appreciating Palmer’s Abbott-blocking ability, that this was the man who fought tirelessly to destroy two of the previous Labor government’s most important progressive policies – the mining tax and the Carbon Price. So Palmer’s not a progressive politician, even if he does have some really interesting ideas about asylum seeker policy. Just ask the people who voted for him – those people he’s ultimately beholden. Or look at how he makes his money.

I am torn in thinking about keep-the-bastards-honest, a-pox-on-both-their-houses anti-politicians and minor parties because there’s no doubt that sometimes some of them can be useful – like when they’re blocking Tony Abbott. Actually, it’s not fair to just say useful. Sometimes they’re entirely heroic and progressive policies wouldn’t be implemented or saved from repeal without them. But just as often, they’re unpredictable, flimsy, self-centred, untrustworthy, and politically motivated to differentiate themselves from major parties for their own vested interests and ideological purity. Yet they claim to be above all this when painting themselves as ‘not like the baddies in the majors’. But most are just as grubby as the spin doctors in the major parties when it comes to election tactics. Otherwise they’d never get elected in the first place. Don’t forget that independents and minor parties rely on convoluted preference deals to get into power, deals which are by their very nature political. Once in parliament they have to do deals – otherwise they’d be both invisible and irrelevant.

A great example of these mixed feelings is my current love-hate relationship with Russell Brand. I guess it’s not really fair to say hate, because I don’t feel the same way about Brand as I do about Abbott. Let’s just say love and frustration. I really respect Brand’s moral stance on the danger of growing wealth inequality. His possible bid to become London’s Lord Mayor is probably inspired by his campaign to reduce unaffordability of housing in London, where he grew up on a council estate. Helen Razor suggests that if Brand wants to be a politician, he should learn a thing or two about economics. But to be fair, when he says he can’t get his head around economics, he may be joking, or he may be making the very fair assessment that current orthodoxies about supply and demand economics are a function of a capitalist system that favours the very few over the rest of us. In that, Brand definitely has a point. Brand is not just any celebrity who decides to talk about politics – he is eloquent, intelligent, passionate, knows his stuff, and is incredibly charismatic – all great qualities of a leader (or politician if you want to call a spade a spade). And his values align very closely with mine. On top of this, he promoted Australia’s March in March to his 8 million twitter followers. Also, his YouTube show The Trews is truly hilarious.

So I’ve covered the things I love, but now what about the frustration? Really it all boils down to Brand’s anti-politician strategy of differentiating himself from mainstream politicians by calling for a revolution and encouraging people who value his opinions not to vote. When I first heard this, I was intrigued. The conspiracy theorist in me wondered for a moment if he was being paid by the Conservative Party to get young progressive voters off the electoral role. And even though I’ve since become a huge fan of Brand, I still can’t see how he can’t see that it’s an incredibly counterproductive action to urge support for progressive policies by telling progressive voters not to vote.  I’m sure the Conservative Party are happy that they didn’t have to pay Brand to mount this campaign. Perhaps a year on, Brand is shifting away from this statement by considering running himself for Mayor – it’s hard to get people to vote for you when you’ve told them that voting at all makes you part of the problem. However, the trait that Brand shares with many anti-politicians and minor parties is that he wants everything to happen now, through revolution, and ignores the reality that progressive policy reforms are never an overnight change inspired by a single person or a small group.

Brand’s impatience makes him in the UK context just as anti-Labour as he is anti-Conservative – he heaps them together into the ‘they’re all the same’ type statements, which ends up benefiting the Conservatives. Why does this statement benefit the Conservatives? Because if they’re just as bad as each other, people may as well vote for Cameron, or in our case, Abbott. If there’s no difference in the result. Reality is, progressive reforms come about through long, hard-fought series of carefully negotiated and compromised battles to inch forward away from the right-wing ideal of letting the market rip (unregulated neoliberalism) and keeping women barefoot in the kitchen (social conservatism). I’ve quoted Judt before on this blog and I’ll quote him again: ‘incremental improvements upon unsatisfactory circumstances are the best we can hope for’.

The ideal of a revolution – a complete replacement of the status quo – as compared to steady and incremental gains in the right direction aren’t two options that you have to choose between. One is a fantasy, the other is achievable. The real option is a choice between the two major parties – one progressive and one conservative. I support the party which aligns most closely with my progressive values, and has the best chance of forming progressive government. As a Port Adelaide supporter, I’ll remind you of the famous Port Adelaide line – we exist to win premierships. The Labor Party doesn’t exist to be activists, or to be ideologically fundamental or to promise a complete overhaul of the status quo. Nor do they expect every progressive voter will agree with everything they do. The Labor Party exists to form government that can improve the lives of Australians through progressive reforms. And they need progressive Australians help them to do this.

Many left wing independents or minor parties spend most of their time bemoaning that the incremental improvements of the major progressive party aren’t fast enough, large enough, or anywhere near revolutionary. And they often spend most of their time fixated on one or two causes which they feel effectively differentiate them from the progressive major party. However, a pragmatist would say that in a country where an extreme right wing conservative such as Abbott can be elected as Prime Minister by a healthy majority and go about undoing Labor’s policy reforms (such as mining tax, Carbon Price, Medicare, ABC funding, health and educational funding, a social safety net just to name a few), it’s unrealistic to believe you’ll achieve any progress by throwing your weight (and lack of vote) behind an ideologically pure revolution, or a single policy ideal, that has no hope of success, and no hope of changing anything. And it’s unhelpful to spend all your time, energy, campaign dollars, talent and voice in the community bagging the progressive option when it’s the option you really want if you really do value progress.

You might not like everything a major party like Labor does, and the flash and colour of an independent or a minor party who promises you the world without any hope of delivering might seem like a tempting option. There’s no reason why these colourful and passionate people can’t contribute to the debate and provide fresh ideas – and sometimes some great blocking skills. But ultimately we need the workhorse – the progressive major party – to be in power if we don’t want the country run by conservative neoliberals. So who are you supporting in the 2016 election? I hope Australian progressives are realistically ready for the fight.

41 comments

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  1. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    Fair enough Victoria, I hope the progressive parties and independents are ready too.

    That’s the point. We want sustainable, fair, progressive political representation which is alternative to the destruction being caused by Abbott’s LNP.

    But it works both ways and Labor must prepare itself for providing a scheme of values, policies and strategies that are worth the Greens and other progressive forces to align to.

    If Labor is just a paler version of the LNP Neanderthals, I won’t be the only one who will ‘keep away from them with a 10 foot pole’!

  2. John Jamieson

    Hello Victoria
    I read a lot of the AIM stuff including yours and I admire people who try to make a difference and break down the barriers to real democracy erected by the two major political parties here in Australia. As a very young person who could vote the year Gough Whitlam was elected, like many we saw he offered an opportunity for Australia to at last come of age and enter the last quarter of the 20th Century with a real plan and message for the future. When he was nobbled by the cabal of private bankers in league with the international trans-national corporations being led by the USA and UK and then illegally dumped as PM, that was the end of my trust in any hope I had for our future. I left Oz for 8 years and worked internationally for that time in Africa, all the Middle Eastern countries (with the exception of Israel, the USA’s appointed and financed “junkyard dog”)before re-emigrating to Australia when Bob Hawke took over, thinking he would prove a good leader. Unfortunately, Bob Hawke, just like every other leader of note, was sent off on a Rhodes Scholarship to the UK, was carefully groomed to maintain the position already put in place after Gough was given the heave-ho. I belong to an organisation that wants REAL economic reform and if you get in touch with Prosper Australia based in Melbourne http://www.progress.org or contact the Association for Good Government in NSW goodgov.redfern@gmail.com I think you will realise that we have been completely hoodwinked by the current crop of politicians on both sides of the house. I live near Albany in WA, mid-way between Albany & Denmark and have spent many years trying to understand why the Labor Party abandoned its key economic policies that were put in place shortly after Federation, viz. unimproved land value taxation and allowing the people’s bank, The Commonwealth Bank of Australia (once owned & managed by the national government on behalf of all citizens & residents), to be sold off to the private banking cartel, with the final parcel sold off by Hawke’s “world’s greatest treasurer” Keating! If you haven’t yet read any of Henry George’s classics, starting with “Progress and Poverty”, then you will never even get a minimal grasp of anything that involves “economics”. Keep on with your efforts on AIM & hope that you check out what John Pilger has to say in his latest effort that has been posted on the Prosper Australia web site.
    Kind regards, John. [John A Jamieson PO Box 2036 ALBANY DC WA 6331]

  3. Billy muddle moir

    ‘Ready for a fight’ should bring a wry smile? Surely, the rabbott has bared his neck to the axe many times over the last 4 years since he defeated the copper man on a sceptic platform? Whilst Gillard swung a penknife at his misogyny, she ignored the chance of ridicule his gaffs presented. The lemon’s ego was deafening and little billy is in for the long haul.
    The progress(ives) have the giant of despair to deal with in his doubting castle which has already consumed labor.

  4. Lee

    I’ll vote for a progressive party. I flatly refuse to vote for an Alternative Liberal Party.

  5. Jason

    Wow! Victoria’s articles are actually getting weirder and weirder. Why is she so insecure about the ALP?

  6. stephentardrew

    Jason:

    Because Labor is insecure and has lost the depth of critical thinking, rational analysis and ethical accountability. Anti-politicians are helping substantially when we cause reactions like we see from Victoria. Democracy is about diversity and when you try to limit diversity you shut down a valuable critique of a largely dysfunctional global oligarchy that plays the game of amorality while hiding behind manufactured consent. Consent has to be genuine not something you expect. You have to work for consent by due diligence and listening to those who are not captured by political expediency. Doubt and fear dance together, so much so, that there is much too much blustering and timidity and not enough foundational logical and rational thinking in politics. This article is a prime example of political immaturity and the compulsion to denigrate those who will not genuflect to political functionaries that think they are the righteous heirs of the working class and intellectuals. I happen to have been both and feel much more connection with Russel Brand than I do to a misguided and lost Labor Party. To be a true citizen you firstly have to stand on your own feat by defining the good and bad in you institutions, for they are in all institutions, then promote the good and challenge the bad.

    Victoria a true politician embraces criticism and diversity while representing the good of humanity.

    There are too many partially informed politicians on both sides that obviously do not have a broad theoretical understanding of the nature of science and evolution and rather than applying themselves too formulation a personal meta-theory rely upon others to guide them through a set of particular prejudices. Victoria you are critical of Russel Brand’s lack of economic knowhow however he has been appearing on the Keiser Report discussing where his political imperatives mesh with economics. Whether you like Max Keiser or not is not the point the fact is he is very knowledgeable about economics and to state that Brand is ignorant of economics is a false assumption.

  7. Kaye Lee

    I don’t agree with not voting – the young especially should be encouraged to make their voice heard. I agree that we must remove as many Coalition politicians as we can. I also am wary of a system that puts someone like Jacqui Lambie in a position to make decisions that affect my life. Having said that, it is not good enough for Labor to just be “not the Coalition”. Ideally I would like to see a Coalition of progressive parties and decent independents where Labor is forced to remember its conscience.

  8. Lee

    Ah now I remember where I read the quote! Underneath an article about Russell Brand and John Lydon’s disagreement on politics last week, a university lecturer in politics wrote that history and numerous studies have shown that not voting is equivalent to giving politicians permission to disregard you. That’s exactly what the LNP have done to young people. We must make ourselves be heard.

    I also don’t agree that Clive Palmer is the left’s current favourite anti-establishment politician. Many of us recognise that he’s a Clayton’s Liberal. Our favourite is probably Scott Ludlam.

  9. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    Well said Kaye Lee and others above, who see the need for a working alliance between the Greens, the progressive parties, sane Indies and Labor (if it wakes up to itself).

    Labor better watch out and act because if the Greens and progressives get enough numbers, Labor might be dispensable and not invited into their alliance!

  10. mars08

    Jason:

    Wow! Victoria’s articles are actually getting weirder and weirder. Why is she so insecure about the ALP

    +1

    A lot of energy being spent trying to preserve the status quo…

  11. Kaye Lee

    Victoria is entitled to express her opinions and I give her credit for getting people talking. I can only hope that the discussion facilitated by her articles reaches Labor ears.

    Getting rid of Abbott is crucial to the future of our country (and more widely, the planet). But I cannot disregard my principles to purely focus on an election. Every day it should be incumbent on us all to appeal to all politicians to do what is right. Criticism does not have to be taken negatively – it can be seen as suggestions on how to better represent your constituents (and humanity).

  12. Kerri

    I totally agree with Jennifer Meyer Smith and those above who do not want a watered down LNP instead of a true Labor party. Abbott won the last election not because he was voted in, but because Labor was voted out. Hence his pioneering as the most unpopular Prime Minister ever and the only one to not enjoy a “honeymoon” with the voters. I want to see Labor going back to their roots and supporting principals of a more left wing nature. Labor in stepping to the right has created a vacuum into which the Greens neatly fit as they now embody more Labor traditional beliefs than Labor itself. If Labor could reembrace those foundations and maybe form a coalition with the Greens we could perhaps see a fair, principled, progressive political party well worth voting for. My 19YO voted first time last election by accessing one of the many websites where you can read up on each of your electorate candidates and create and print your own “how to vote” card. This gave her the freedom and independance to really enjoy having her say via the polling booth. I also used the site. I strongly recommend you encourage your young people to do the same. This will allow them to read up on local candidates beliefs, history, background etc. It allows them to engage with the politicians in a more meaningful way than the TV.
    Cluey Voter, Below the line and senate io are three such sites.
    Donkey votes are exactly what they are called.
    A wasted vote and frequently a vote for the status quo.
    Anarchy does not win progress.

  13. Annie Byam

    Totally agree Kerri …….. it was Rudd, almost solely, who managed to put the Abbott and his lunatics in power. People simply could not abide Rudd, and chose the other option.

    Also wonder if Labor ‘stepping to the right’ has indeed deliberately created that vacuum into which the Greens can step. ……. After all, as you said – they ” now embody more Labor traditional beliefs than Labor itself “.

    An interesting state of affairs. Perhaps there will be a ‘joining’ of those two ? That has been mooted before.

    Hopefully it will gather momentum.

  14. joffa230

    Labor apparently don’t want to win the next election but what is the alternative. Better a weak Labor Government than a LYING LNP that only wants to kick the Aged, Disabled, Unemployed and all other low income earners in the teeth while they are already down.

  15. mars08

    joffa230:

    Labor apparently don’t want to win the next election but what is the alternative…

    If Labor wins the next federal election… they will be doing it without my vote. Is simply CANNOT vote for the ALP in it’s current form.

  16. diannaart

    I definitely won’t be wasting my vote come the 2016 election. I most definitely will be voting for a progressive party that most closely aligns with my progressive views, aspirations and ideals – The Greens. If Labor should return to its progressive roots between now and then, I may consider putting a preference for them AFTER the Greens, because, given the record for the ALP over the past few years – I don’t really trust them. Once trust is gone a lot of work is required to win that trust back. So far, Labor has done nothing.

  17. Wayne Turner

    Labor apparently don’t want to win the next election but what is the alternative. Better a weak Labor Government than a LYING LNP that only wants to kick the Aged, Disabled, Unemployed and all other low income earners in the teeth while they are already down. –

    I agree with this,except they do want to win the next election,they are just so GUTLESS still and afraid of the MSM and Libs.

  18. joffa230

    If Labor wins the next federal election… they will be doing it without my vote. Is simply CANNOT vote for the ALP in it’s current form

    Mars I understand where you are coming from and you are right but not voting Labor means that it is certain that the LYING LNP will win again in 2016.

  19. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    I’m voting Greens 1st and am considering Labor 2nd only because we need to beef up the numbers to get the LNP Neanderthals out. This way it will work.

    By putting the Greens 1st, Labor has to acknowledge that they need the Greens.

    Then, there has to be policy negotiations that will bring Labor back from the wilderness of economic rationalism and back into the realms of social justice and socio-economic reforms that the Greens advocate.

    I am also interested in the progressive parties and sane Indies. An alliance between all progressive forces would be in Australia’s best interests.

    When Labor returns from the wilderness, I will begin to believe in them again.

  20. corvus boreus

    At the last march I attended, the likely local Labor candidate caught my eye as he spoke.
    He kind of beamed(i think he liked my hard-hat).
    Then he glanced up at my sign(big red ICAC).
    The beam fell off his face.
    He avoided my eye thereafter.
    I very probably won’t put the eye-avoider(LAB) first on the little form, but I will definitely still put him above the lycra-clad sloth on cocaine(NAT) that currently misrepresents my electorate.

  21. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    Your description of the affect of your big red ICAC sign had on the pollie’s face is priceless.

    It would be good to see 5 (or 10?) pollies from Labor and 5 (or 10?) pollies from Liberal National Party all asked if they support ICAC’s in their respective states … as well as a Federal ICAC.

    All ICAC’s would be instigated and completed by their next elections (reasonable time permitting).

    This would be a great way to decide whether each party and their candidates work on behalf of the Australian people’s best interests.

    At this point of time, their reluctance to have a Federal ICAC and the same in other states is very telling, and potentially undermines their integrity.

  22. corvus boreus

    Jennifer,
    I reckon it would be a very good notion for senator Milne, the eloquent Mr Ludlum, or any semi-honest senator from any party for that matter, to again raise another members bill/motion calling for a vote for a federal ICAC(plus attendant suggestions).
    It is(partially) a different senate from the last failed attempt, and it would at least show which way the new puppies wagged.

  23. Lee

    “Mars I understand where you are coming from and you are right but not voting Labor means that it is certain that the LYING LNP will win again in 2016.”

    Voting for one party simply to keep another party out sends a message to the recipient of your vote that their actions are acceptable to you. If more lefties voted Green, Labor would be sent a clear message to get its act together.

  24. stephentardrew

    Mars:

    I just posted elsewhere that we are trying to untwist the party political sails while the ship is sinking from a hole in its side. But unfortunately we have to measure the good against the bad and make compromises. Mind you I do agree with you about Labor. How to get logic and rationality into the debate without emotional tribal infighting and bickering is a real challenge. I think we are all trying to find a way out of this morass however innovation is difficult and often slow and tedious. Personally I would like to see a committee of non-partisan scientists review policy from an applied scientific perspective formulating a variety of thoughtful critiques and options. Bit visionary but that is what is needed. The point is how do you introduce rational fact into the debate without having to continually battle with ideology and misinformation. A simple fact like admitting that economics is not a true empirical science yet it must conform to certain fundamental laws of science, free from ideological prejudice, would go some way to implementing modern money theory.

    Just some thoughts.

  25. Jo McSweeney

    As someone who occasionally visits Twitter, i have recently been on there more and this caught my eye:

    Queen Victoria @Vic_Rollison · Oct 28
    If you think asylum seeker policy is more important than health, education, welfare, industrial relations, environment tweet at someone else

    This is just my opinion, but this heartless, nasty tweet goes to the heart of Labor. Victoria is simply channeling their spitefulness. Our treatment of desperate people who come to us for refuge is appalling and speaks volumes about Labor. As long as they support Morrison by going along with all his polices (and hinting that they will continue them themselves if elected) and never speaking out when asylum seekers are abused and murdered, then Labor are existing in a moral vacuum and they will never have my vote again. And they don’t deserve yours.

  26. mars08

    @Lee…. October 31, 2014 at 9:20 am

    +1

    It might be frightfully unfashionable, unreasonable and unrealistic… but I’d like my vote to represent WHAT I WANT… not what I’m willing to settle for.

  27. Lee

    “It might be frightfully unfashionable, unreasonable and unrealistic… but I’d like my vote to represent WHAT I WANT… not what I’m willing to settle for.”

    Mars, i don’t think it is unreasonable and unrealistic at all. Those who are too gutless or lazy to demand better of the people who represent them in government deserve the dickheads they get.

  28. Kerri

    Again I agree with Jennifer Meyer Smith and you too Lee. I will be voting Green as will my adult children. The Greens clarity of purpose and reluctance to compromise make them a far more potent choice. Labor are so willing to cowtow to Abbott and co in fear of redneck backlash. The Greens stick to their guns. Ludlam has been campaigning loud and clear about data retention and privacy for months now (probably longer) and what has the light on the hill done?? Vote yes and then go “oh hang on a minute?? Maybe that’s not a good idea? Let’s try to stick our finger in the dam wall by swimming against the current and trying to find the original hole!” WTF you voted for it and now you’re saying but it’s not right??? This is popularist politics personified. Labor is too busy chasing votes to have any principles. They are adopting the famous weather vane approach and we know who the expert in that field is.
    Stop thinking about the power and think about the good!!! That was Gough’s strength!! Have a plan and stick to it without fear or favour!

  29. Lee

    “Ludlam has been campaigning loud and clear about data retention and privacy for months now (probably longer) and what has the light on the hill done?? Vote yes and then go “oh hang on a minute?? Maybe that’s not a good idea? Let’s try to stick our finger in the dam wall by swimming against the current and trying to find the original hole!” WTF you voted for it and now you’re saying but it’s not right??? This is popularist politics personified. Labor is too busy chasing votes to have any principles. ”

    Exactly, Kerri. After an episode of Q and A a couple of weeks ago Julian Burnside tweeted that his fellow guests on the show from the ALP and Liberal parties were ignorant of the anti-terrorist laws they had recently voted for. Now two weeks later Shorten has admitted he too has been voting without understanding what he is voting for. It’s a worry – and they expect us to trust them.

  30. never voted

    Kaye LeeOctober 30, 2014 at 7:10 am

    I don’t agree with not voting –

    Its not who votes that counts, its who counts the votes.
    if voting made any difference at all, they would outlaw it. our political “leaders” are selected, not elected.

  31. mars08

    Kerri:

    …Have a plan and stick to it without fear or favour!

    Uh…. But what the progressive voters have to understand is that the ALP does have a plan and they ARE sticking to it!!

    The Labor number-crunchers have looked at the electorate and the party has decided to go for the low-hanging self-absorbed, socially conservative, fearful, mortgage belt vote. And they are determined to stick to that plan even if it means alienating the more progressive voters… even to the point of ignoring the party’s progressive members.

    Anyone who thinks that Labor will … maybe… reverse course is in for a long long wait!

  32. Wayne Turner

    I agree mars08,hence one of the many reasons I vote Green and NOT Labor.

  33. Lee

    “And they are determined to stick to that plan even if it means alienating the more progressive voters… even to the point of ignoring the party’s progressive members.”

    Yes, I’ve written to the ALP a few times on different issues and urged them to get back to their roots. They have ignored me each time, telling me loud and clear that they are not interested in my vote. I’m happy to oblige.

  34. Wayne Turner

    That’s the ONLY thing: GUTLESS Labor are scared of the public too,well to be exact the ignorant bogan vote who are sadly a big number.

    Also,this article FAILED when the author claims to speak for everyone in a certain section ie: The left. I can and will ONLY speak for me.I can’t stand Clive Palmer,he just paid his way into parliament,is totally self serving,and has forced a bogan bigot moron like Lambie on us.I am happy when ANYONE helps block these Libs lame piss poor policies,but that doesn’t mean I then like the peson/people blocking said policies.

  35. mars08

    Wayne Turner:

    …the ignorant bogan vote who are sadly a big number.

    I’m not sure that the bogan vote is all that large. However, the impression I get is that those votes ARE very important in certain crucial electorates. Remember how much time and attention the major parties lavished on western Sydney during the last campaign?

  36. Kevin Griffith

    I have been a Labor Party member much of my life. I became seriously disillusioned by their shift to the right on education in the 90’s funding private schools at the expense of public. I do not even give my preference to the ALP since their disgusting and disgraceful loss of principle on the treatment of asylum seekers. Until this one policy returns to a humanitarian one, I will vote informal.

  37. Jennifer Meyer-Smith

    Kevin,

    like you, I was a Labor Party supporter, member, volunteer for all my life. I remember the passion of loving Labor in my youth and I was in the lucky generation to have seen and believed in what Gough and his comrades stood for.

    Like you also, I felt regret when Susan Ryan, the Minister for Education under Keating (I think) re-introduced fees for higher education. Nonetheless, I went on supporting Labor and believing that Labor still stood for what was for the common good.

    I agree however, that Labor’s strict indifferent stance on how it treats asylum seekers, is beyond forgiveness. Labor was more cajoling to the bogan or inhumane elements in the community than respectful of asylum seekers’ claims to sanctuary.

    I am equally disgusted by Labor’s ruthless stance on its welfare policies particularly to the most vulnerable, such as the unemployed or under-employed on Newstart.

    It is for this reason that I am now seeking political representation from progressive political forces, including the Greens, sane Independents such as Wilke, and new progressive parties such as https://www.australianprogressives.org.au/policies#

    I would love to see an alliance between them to ensure rabid Abbott and his LNP Neanderthals are wiped out along with their disgusting policies. That is why I discuss politics on this site and every other site I contribute to because we need to share our angst and share our ideas for political solutions.

    That is also why I intend to vote at every election.

  38. Ricardo29

    Perhaps there is just a small group of us endlessly repeating our mantra:I want a Labor Party which represents my desires and until they become that party I will be voting Greens. It seems we must be a minority, vocal though we are, because I see no signs that Labor is listening, hearing or responding.

    One thing I will never do is vote informal. That is not just a useless protest but no protest at all and I think psephologists agree only favours the conservatives.

    One wonders if the ALP, or any of its individuals, ever read the perceptive thought written here by the likes of Victoria and Kaye Lee, as well as the illuminating comments. Perhaps they could all be gifted a subscription!

  39. mars08

    “One wonders if the ALP, or any of its individuals, ever read the perceptive thought written here by the likes of Victoria and Kaye Lee, as well as the illuminating comments.”

    One wonders if there is a group of us endlessly living in denial… wanting to believe that Labor (in 2014) has the slightest inclination or capacity to be a more progressive party. Have you ever considered that they have well and truly shifted their ideology and policies to the right.. intentionally? If they were a boy-band their PR people would promote it as ‘rebranding” and say it was catering to a different audience…

    Perhaps the ALP strategists have done their calculations and decided they just don’t need you

  40. Pingback: What went wrong for UK Labour? | Victoria Rollison

  41. Pat Scott

    I feel the only way to a just, “for the people, by the people” politics is to destroy campain funds, and the shady demon act know as lobbying. People in America ( half are blind, following bling faith that it’s gods will and if they pray hard things will change. NOT true, in fact its the def of insanity. Nothing this greed controlled country can change when the folks that hold the power to do so, for lack of any better word posisble, are greedy lying assholes. In the States after” whom i deem the worst commander in chief” Regan, Ronald. Thank god hes finally dead so we are no longer subjected to his false corporate propaganda. Hes been out office for decades but we still deal with the banks coporate monsters and the absurd war on drugs which all have brung this Co to its knees, How is ok that companys ” thanks to the B movie actor (later but not lesser evil VP DICK), make millions and billions dont pay the 30+ % tax mostly paying less then a doctor or a man on SSI, With the trillions we spent in a wool over our eyes we’ve spend enough to rebuild US in gold! In the US we live in a police state and not just boys in blue, Boys in camo, riot gear with assualt trucks guns and attitude just dreaming to do the river dance on rhe 4th admendment and filling even more people into our crowed for profit jails. This Co is F@%*ck and Ive just scratched the suface of the problem and my own ANGER. I wish I could leave or have the means to start a movement that the 1% king of kings will frown on………..

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