A Citizen’s Manifesto (or what needs to happen but our political process is broken and cannot deliver)
By Marcus Champ
Given our ex-Prime Minister has released his “trumpian” manifesto “To get Australia Working Again”, I thought why not provide an alternative view from someone not in the parliament, who is just an average person, and until recently has barely been involved in the political process. Just to put up an alternative of what could be but for what we loosely call our representative government.
As a disclaimer, a few weeks ago I joined the Greens and only attended my first meeting very recently. So, although there is a great deal I have proposed that is also reflected in the Greens policy platform, there is some that is not, so consider the following as what I am passionate about and NOT official party policy (yet).
As a start lets set the context for everything that will follow.
- Everything I will list is based on evidence with references, reports and strong rationale. In fact it would change the political discourse a great deal if we relied on evidence and a logical basis as opposed to narrow minded blind ideology.
- I cannot list everything so I will provide a snapshot which will give a good overview of the key areas that need to be addressed.
- Although I have been thinking about this for some time, there is still some detail to work through and I don’t have staff, or a department, a background in public policy, or until recently a party history over decades to draw upon, so please keep that in mind in the comments.
- Lastly, I may not mention it specifically, but I would end the puerile vilification of poor and underprivileged manifest in recent policy such as robot-debt.
Before someone asks “but how are you going to pay for what follows”, here is the answer: Another very important piece is to understand how modern economics and Government spending actually works as opposed to the neoliberal dogma that dominates our political discourse: Neoliberal economics and austerity does NOT work, causes massive damage, and is largely responsible for reducing the middle class, and the transfer of wealth to the rich. Let’s base economics on facts NOT ideology, therefore:
- Australia is a sovereign nation with its own fiat currency, which means the Government CANNOT run of money, Government Debt does NOT carry over to the grandchildren, and Govt does not need to go to anyone to raise funds. Funds can literally be created, as they are now, by keystroke….ok, sounds interesting but so what, what does this mean?
- The key point to this REALITY, is that Government spending is NOT constrained by money, taxation does NOT provide the Government with funds to “pay” for services, and the budget does not need to be “balanced “ let alone in surplus. In fact Government spending is critical to effectively managing the economy, and in simple terms a Government deficit equals the non-Government surplus and vice-versa.
- This means if the Government runs a surplus what is actually happening is more money is being taken out of the economy than being put in, and the shortfall has to be made up by either reducing spending or borrowing…this is why non-government sector debt (yours, mine, and everyone’s) has grown so massively since the Howard Government. It is non-government debt that largely explains our current economic malaise, characterised by constrained spending, anaemic retail sales and acts as a huge anchor on the economy and prevents productive capacity from being deployed. The level of non-government debt is so high the RBA itself has identified is at sovereign risk to the economy that constrains their ability to move interest rates.
Lastly, many of you will be thinking doesn’t endless spending just create inflation? No, not necesasarily.
- The real constraint on spending is the productive capacity of the economy, but what does this mean? In simple terms this means if you demand 150 cars, but the economy can only produce 100 cars, this causes a shortage and prices for cars will go up causing inflation.
- Given Australia’s inflation is historically low and we have considerable unemployment/underemployment, it means there is a great deal of productive capacity in the economy before we have to worry about inflationary pressure. In fact in terms of wages we are in a deflationary environment, which you can thank our political leaders for next time you vote.
If you want to know about the reality of how macroeconomics works, just look up Modern Monetary Theory which has also been mentioned on this site previously.
A Citizen’s Manifesto for a Better, Stronger, more Sustainable Society
Overall Vision: Transition Australian economy into one that serves the people to create a more fair, just and stable democracy that encourages and rewards participation, innovation, knowledge creation, environmentally sustainable practices, and inclusiveness.
Taking Money out of Politics
- Banning all foreign and corporate/incorporated donations. Cap donations from individuals to say $1,000 per annum, and have real-time reporting of ALL donations, with an independent office to provide summary data to the public and basic weekly/monthly reporting and oversight.
- Ministerial diaries to be recorded and made searchable, taking into account reasonable security steps to ensure protection of privacy and security.
- Establish a Federal ICAC based on the NSW model with wide ranging powers and independence
- Establish channels for people to participate in the political process through direct feedback, voting on bills, and putting forward suggestions in a more transparent and easier way.
- Expand freedom of Information laws and processes to make them easier, simpler, taking out fees, and more timely.
- Public funding of political campaigns and elections to be reviewed and increased if necessary. This includes giving the Electoral Commission extra powers to check in candidate legitimacy, such as citizenship, offences, and financial solvency to ensure integrity of candidates.
- Establish a Banking Royal Commission.
Strengthening The Social Safety Net
- Jobs Guarantee – Implement a voluntary employment program called the “Jobs Guarantee” anyone who wants a job can have one. Everyone in the program would be paid a real living salary (see Universal Basic Income below), it would come with simple benefits such as basic holiday leave, sick leave, base superannuation, medical cover, basic work-cover insurance etc. It would be administered at the local level and a wide range of job options would be covered. The basic premise would be if you are doing something to benefit society it would be counted.
- Universal Basic Income – Replace the myriad of social programs, unemployment benefits, single parent payments, and more with a single program based on a Universal Basic Income. It would be no obligations payment to cover a wide range of activities, from stay at home carers, inability to work, taking care of sick family members, self-development and education, and more. It would be means tested and reduced as higher incomes are earned. Some key principles: no waiting periods, small number of key restrictions, and controls.
- All privatisation of social program would be terminated and government agencies strengthened or created to administer and provide oversight.
- Housing program for the homeless…quite simple, build basic houses, run as communal communities with intent of moving people out of support system into their own housing as soon as possible. With UBI, and Jobs Guarantee this should occur quickly.
Health and Well-being
- Zero Harm Drugs Strategy – The “War on Drugs” has been an abject failure and new approach required. Illicit drugs viewed as a public health issue, de-criminalised, strongly regulated and funding directed to prevention and treatment. Mandatory treatment programs, drugs available through prescription, with intent of treating individuals to break the dependency cycle.
- Any supply outside of the regulated process would be strongly acted upon with appropriate sentences for suppliers outside of the regulated regime. Having said that, it is expected the illicit drug trade would cease overnight, as the economic model driving it is destroyed.
- Alcohol and smoking which are far more destructive would be treated in a similar way. When it comes to smoking ban all sales of cigarettes/tobacco products, to anyone born after a certain year. Smoking will be eradicated.
- New funding for mental health, NDIS, hospitals and generally strengthen Medicare to be a true single payer system such as expansion in dental services, renegotiation of Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme in the public interest. This would include much stricter controls on advertising to doctors and other meddling by private companies in the public system.
- Principle would be the private sector is not an efficient way of running health services, and remove for-profit motive for set standard medical services for everyone. Privatisation of public hospitals to cease, and funding arrangements to public health to be reviewed and streamlined. End subsidies to private sector health insurance.
Public Ownership of Critical Public Infrastructure
- Privatisation has been a disaster with massive cost to the economy, and wealth stealing by rent-seekers and the politically connected. Water, Electricity, Domestic Gas, Education, and NBN considered critical infrastructure and returned to public ownership. Ensure strong oversight through Government owned corporation status, and returning dividends to the public, but no private ownership.
- Immediately end disastrous privatisation of TAFE and reinvest in trades and apprenticeships
- NBN would be halted, and re-done as fibre to the premises for EVRYONE. This is critical infrastructure for the next century…do it once, do it right, do it with Fibre.
- De-carbonise economy, with appropriate support and incentives to facilitate the process.
- Create a “People’s Bank” potentially operating out of Post Offices, providing basic banking, personal and business loans, and zero fee accounts.
- End privatisation of the prison system.
- All key public infrastructure to be wholly owned by the people.
Infrastructure and Research Investment
Implement a widespread program of infrastructure spending, linked to Jobs Guarantee, and directed to building the productive capacity of the economy.
- High speed inland rail, particularly for freight to be seriously looked at
- Weather proofing the a National Highway
- Public Transport investment across all cities
- De-carbonise economy, install electric vehicle grid across country
- Revitalise CSIRO, take out profit motive from research and create new institutions for oversight
- Reignite Australia’s once blossoming space industry, including looking at options for launch facilities and other related opportunities.
Principle being Housing is to live, not for speculation, and policies need to ensure speculating is restricted. The single truth is housing prices rise to the level of debt allowed. Demand has a role, but is NOT the driver of process. With these policies house prices will fall, but in relative terms everyone will be better off.
- Reduce immigration levels to pre-Howard era levels (see immigration)
- Increase capital required by Banks to provide home-loans.
- Review capital gains tax, and negative gearing with intent to phase out
- Restrict all foreign investment to new buildings only and actually enforce
- Bring housing and real estate agents under anti-money laundering legislation
- Create new section in ABS to independently collect data on housing market, and provide data to public and broader market in a timely manner
- Revitalise public housing schemes, and implement rent control programs if necessary
Social Justice and Animal Rights Reform
Human rights, social justice and equal opportunity needs to be strengthened.
- Equal marriage, right to access reproductive services such as abortion, and voluntary euthanasia implemented
- Direct appropriate funding to public access to justice and law services
- Strengthen freedom of information and whistleblowing laws
- Animal rights to be strengthened, end grey-hound racing and look to phase out all horse racing as it is cruel and inhumane, and encourages gambling which destroys families.
- Review sponsorship in sports, particularly in terms of gambling and alcohol
- Phase out poker machines, and all forms of exploitive gambling. Non more casinos and look to close some.
- Negotiate a treaty with Aboriginal and Torres Straight people, apologise for past treatment, and change the date of Australia Day.
Immigration and Wages
- Immigration levels are historically very high. We are currently adding around 200,000 people every year, which is way above historical levels. Review to focus on family reunification, asylum seekers, and critical knowledge and skills required. Phase out “pay” for visa programs, and bring back to merit and humanitarian focus.
- 457 visa are being rorted and need to be greatly curtailed, Prosecute companies that are rorting the system.
- Review all free trade agreements where labour can be brought in to circumvent domestic laws and requirements. In fact review all free trade agreements and ensure none are every negotiated in secret again.
- Strengthen union participation in the labour negotiation process.
- UBI and Jobs Guarantee will act as new “minimum standard” so no one will be forced to stay where they do not want to.
Manufacturing and High Technology Economy
- Create new investment fund similar to Clean Energy Fund to provide seed money and investment into start-ups and new business ideas. Returns back into fund to strengthen over time. Start with $10 billion capital to get it started.
- Build new electric care facility on old care factory sites, and convert all government vehicles to electric over time.
- Provide investment to transition economy to re-use, recycle and reduce waste in every sector. Using Models currently operating in states provide national oversight to meet waste and efficiency targets. Expert expertise.
- Invest in new renewable energy economy, and cease all subsidies for fossil fuels, and phase out coal from all energy production. Export expertise to world.
Taxation is a powerful tool to shape behaviour and direct productive capacity and focus across the economy. It should be a tool that is used to reinforce and support policy as appropriate with a broader social goal to build equity, fairness, and level playing field.
- Remove GST from being linked to state funding…this is divisive, unnecessary and detracts from productive capacity across country.
- Pivot taxation from labour to capital. Eliminate payroll tax, implement estate tax, and review all taxation for what it is trying to achieve and how it is adding to the productive capacity.
- Rebalance taxation from the poor back to who has the capacity to pay.
- Close loopholes, particularly profit shifting and focus taxation on source of revenue.
- Restrict the amount that can be claimed in taxation advice with progressive caps based upon income.
- Churches have been increasingly involved in the public discourse, so they can start paying taxes.
- Stop revolving door of taxation expertise between government and consulting companies, particularly the Big 4.
- End superannuation taxation subsidies to wealthy.
- Place an extra taxation levy on any company with CEO pay greater than 100 times more than average worker. Pay to include ALL forms of remuneration, including options and shares.
Break the Game of Mates
Rent-seekers, the politically connected, the corrupt have been siphoning off wealth from the economy in a number of key areas and every person loses thousands of dollars every year from these activities.
- Review land-banking, developer kick-backs, zooning, and urban development with particular emphasis of stopping the revolving door from public to private sector.
- Superannuation rules changed to boost returns and return costs. It has been estimated EVERYONE is losing around 1-1.5% returns on their super due to this corruption and profiteering.
- Banking – The financial sector has benefitted directly from being a key player in the game of mates and this needs to be broken. Place fees on all financial transactions with zero productive benefit, such as complex financial transactions, and transactions purely for speculation.
- Stop revolving door of politicians moving in and out of private sector,. Minimum 2 year banning from consulting, and lobbying in similar area, and stopping parliamentary pension over a set level of salary. This would be retrospective, with due warning.
- Review how public infrastructure funding is done. Privatisation of all public infrastructure to cease and ownership back to public where possible.
- Review relationship with all foreign owned and local mining companies to ensure the people are properly benefitting from our own resources. Establish a system based on Swedish model moving to profit sharing, review royalties, and mine rehabilitation guarantees. Prosecute if necessary to get attention. If mining companies threaten to leave, show them door and create a public owned company to do what they will not.
- This also means reviewing with intent to nationalise ports, airports, and key infrastructure.
- Return Universities to focus on actual learning and research…take out profit motive, and fund accordingly.
Other key initiatives:
- Establish independent authority to support local media, with own statutory fund like a “wealth fund” but for independent media. Corporate media has failed and no longer can maintain independence and quality, so provide umbrella to support new media. Link to Jobs Guarantee and recognise journalism as a civic improvement activity that can be supported.
- Review the current levels of Government, or at very least completely re-draw relationship with states. Set funding levels based on need and per capita, remove GST from this process.
- Moratorium on consultant spending, and review of all relationships and activities with consulting companies starting with the Big 4.
- Consider a “debt Jubilee” to deleverage economy in a cost effective and efficient manner.
- End involvement in stupid wars, don’t progress submarines we don’t need, and review all defence spending which has a history of profligacy and poor outcomes.
- Restore funding to the ABC.
- Start the process to move Australia to become a Republic.
- Look at ways to encourage people to participate in the decision making process of the parliament.
- Remove the damn fence from lawns over parliament house.
Obviously there is so much more that needs to be done to transition Australia into a fair, sustainable, and socially just society where everyone can share in our collective endeavour.
Lastly, it is anticipated these policies and reforms will eliminate unemployment, extreme poverty, homelessness, greatly reduce drug dependence, and it would be expected the crime rate would significantly shift downwards.
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Establish a Federal ICAC based on the NSW model with wide ranging powers and independence the NSW model has been recently weakened so I maintain that the Queensland CCC would be a much better model for a federal Crime and Corruption Commission it was weakened on purpose by the NSW tory government because too many tory MPs were being caught by ICAC.
Hi – a long list and a wish list many probably like – but how to implement? Stuck with an irrelevant constitution and a system of colonial privilege for the ruling classes and those who bribe and pervert ….. there is no viable renewal mechanism apart from a “revolution” .
I had a vision some twenty years ago which was then used as an outline for a satirical TV series – but the humour was too black for most people. With a bit of revision and a new focus, it spawned this little web which I update very occasionally. It’s got some old and not so old documents, quite short and sometimes even pretty, in PDF format for viewing and download. If anyone likes them or feels they are worth considering by others, feel free to download and spread them around. http://www.lifesupportinternational.org
Establish channels for people to participate in the political process through direct feedback, voting on bills, and putting forward suggestions in a more transparent and easier way. This process would be better bought about by either turning the Labor Party into or establishing a new ‘people’s party’ the only reason I mention the Labor Party is because they have all the appropriate established committees in place (sadly they are all taken by AWU/SDA stooges) so could easily be transformed into a ‘people’s party’ the tories on the other hand are a party purely established and supported by big business and foreign corporations for the benefit of not having to pay income tax. To Australia’s detriment.
Some very good ideas here. Look for another political outlet if the Greens waste your time, energy and enthusiasm as they have done with so many others who tried to talk logically about immigration’s contribution to population growth. With regard to your statement about Australia’s inflation being historically low, with deflated wages, I would argue that, if the cost of land for housing, rent, business premises, were taken into account, Australia has historically high inflation. It is not very well known, but the CPI does not take housing and work premise costs into account, nor do discussions about wage levels. If we were to act on your suggestion of slowing down the population growth demand factor on housing etc costs, then we could have much lower wages and pensions would cover costs. If we were into global trade, then the cost of production would be drastically lowered and we would be more competitive. I have written something to this effect, and also talking about natural local social organisation and caring for the elderly too here: https://candobetter.net/node/1967, to debunk the stuff we hear about how unaffordable everyone but the very rich is. A lot of people don’t realise which laws were changed in order to make the immigration of cheap labour viable in Australia. Before these laws changed, employers could not really exploit this avenue and that made us very different from the United States. See “Kennett population policy, numbers and flow-ons: Regional migration and industrial law under Kennett”, https://candobetter.net/node/4612 Kennett actually pioneered the first of these law changes in Victoria, such as declaring Melbourne CBD a region in need of immigration. The states have more or less run immigration numbers since they followed suit, and it is wrong to think the feds control our immigration numbers. Kennett also substituted the very hard to enforce federal labor agreements for state awards, then Howard using the Corporations clause in the Aust constitution. Also the deregulation and internationalisation of the housing market.
I agree with most of your ideas and we do need the revenue from the multinational corporations, at least 30% of whom pay no tax at all, not a cent, and this situation has persisted since at least 2013 when the tories were elected to power.
Hideously expensive, but wonderfully beneficial, would be a move to make all banking in the country publicly owned. This was actually proposed by B Chifley in 1949, and the new ‘Liberal Party’ strongly [ and successfully] campaigned against it, calling it ‘Communism’. Menzies, however, after thinking about it, saw merit in the idea, and, in order to curb the greed of the banks, created the Commonwealth Bank, a bank which was publicly owned. This bank acted as a brake on the greed of all banks, but, in a moment of pure idiocy, P Keating had this bank ‘privatised’ (He has since publicly admitted his mistake).
The above article contains an exciting list of progressive ideas, and deserves wide public involvement in its further development.
Over 100 years ago, Australia was extraordinarily progressive, leading the world in political innovation. (universal suffrage, modern unionism, etc., etc.) Our ‘Liberal’ Party has managed to have us now as one of the world’s most anti-progressive modern countries, a country that cannot now even summon the will to embrace marriage equality.
(At one time, Menzies tried to ban the Communist Party. If a kind way could be found, it might be a good idea to attempt to ban the ‘Liberal’ Party?)
It is timely that a discussion of these issues should be part of the national conversation. You seem to have covered everything I had considered in the past, so I am hopeful that “it’s Time” again. We have to be mindful that the forces against such changes have proven to be extremely formidable in the past as they prefer to focus on the fear and greed aspects of human nature. Protecting our borders to manage immigration, providing the capability to defend our values and ending privatization of utilities and services will mobilize the forces who benefit from the current policies. The inappropriate use of secrecy by governments to hide torture, drug trafficking and bribes, kickbacks and unlawful payments, will have to be dealt with. We all know what happened to JFK when he attempted to implement these reforms.
What a great list of very “noble” & progressive & anti “big” government ideals & aspirationst! One thing I would advise is that ALL Pollies obscenely generous so-called “pensions” & superranuation schemes be limited to ONLY whilst a person is actually in the parliament, either sitting or in opposition. Upon leaving parliament (for whatever reason) their pension reverts to what we “normal” people get, no more! And their super reverts to what we “normal” people get, averaged over all the various super schemes we, the voting public, can choose from.
Some really good ideas set out – too many to comment on fully. Unfortunately, the biggest losers from some would be the rich and powerful and they won’t give up their wealth and power without a fight. That doesn’t mean we should pursue an agenda to reduce the influence of those who can use wealth to accrue influence, but to warn that they will fight “tooth and nail” to protect their positions. Yes, this will include many CEO’s who pretentiously turn up each year to “sleep out” for the homeless, but who actively pursue agendas that cast thousands onto society’s scrap heap in the name of corporate profits and hence personal gains.
To illustrate the magnitude of the task, consider the list of democratically elected leaders of sovereign countries who were assassinated by the US, Britain (yes, Britain has a vile history of plotting to assassinate world leaders and other people it didn’t like), France (few are more nationalistic in their fervour and none are as incompetent at assassination) and Russia. Even Belgium has had a shot.
Mostly, the assassinations were carried out, or at least attempted because the targets tended to be nationalistic leaders who wanted no more than that their own country controlled their wealth instead of foreigners who rape and pillage wealth and leave nothing behind. In the case of the Congo and Guatemala, the leaders started to compulsorily acquire assets that had been sold to, or taken by foreign interests. This was definitely the case in the Congo and Guatemala, but the list is long.
BTW; I absolutely agree with restrictions over scumbag politicians taking well paid jobs AND their parliamentary pensions. Either implement a means test, or a test that gives them the pension or their salary (plus non-cash benefits), whichever is greater until they genuinely retire. Robb is an outstanding example of the vile corruption in politics and the ease with which those who control capital and who want anonymous power can coerce politicians to do their bidding. For example, how did it take years to bring a criminal like Obeid to justice and how does his influence linger in the NSW Labor party – surely the reason that Dastyari is still in the Parliament despite blatant corruption as Shorten is so weak he needs the NSW factions to support him and that means a role for Dastyari.
Fantastic work, Marcus, thoughtful and although not fully comprehensive as you have stated, a most worthy list of imperative issues that desperately need public discussion and put an end to the whining of Abbott, Hanson, et al.
All of the above in Marcus’ article have far more import than deliberate divisive and noisy complaints about SSM, segregation of people Pauline doesn’t like, nonsense from nuff-nuff’s such as Mark Latham, Malcolm Roberts and assorted interference from religious fundamentalists.
Will ANY of it happen? Yes, if we remain calm, united and very, very persistent.
Firstly, I wanted to thank everyone for their great comments and will have to make a few amendments by the look of it. On a side note to Ian, yes I was away of Chifleys Bank proposal and was toying with taking back the Commonwealth Bank but the culture and cost would not make a good investment….much better to start again.
Ian I would add yes technically what has been proposed is “expensive” but as Modern monetary Theory demonstrates money is a much smaller concern, furthermore the progressive taxation and breaking the “Game of Mates” will not only release a great deal of productive capacity, but will also bring in a great deal more in taxation revenue to create more space for building a stronger country. Furthermore, my expectation would be our current account would steadily improve as real exports would get stimulated. All of which would create even more space to invest in our country in the way I have outlined.
Lastly, a short message also to Diannaart, I have quite a few more but was already conscious of putting up too many.
Thanks again to everyone for your feedback, really appreciated and count this as a “first cut”.
I am still digesting your “first cut” – no hurry for more just yet.
Am interested in more we can do to run cleaner, recyclable, sustainable systems of living, meaning inclusive of environment, human and animal and flora rights and finally, the economy which needs to come last.
Putting aside all the technical difficulties, would you care to define ‘donations’? Does your definition include, donations that go beyond ‘dollars’ to include ‘in kind’? Like supplying, free ‘labour’ as Gina did in Barnaby’s recent election campaign? What about the ‘donation’ of associated costs, such as free advertising, free rentals, transport (cars and planes) and the like?
Then there’s the elephant in the room – the big problem of ‘donating’ media space, both negative and positive – via, for example, attacks on opponents, favourable editorials, endorsements and the like?
Any thoughts? After all it is a minefield.
Marcus most of us would love to see these types of policies and implemented strategically unfortunately I don’t see any of our current parties doing this due to so many outside influences even as MN mentions re hidden help. I wish you luck with Di Natalie at the helm I feel he’s another neocon in disguise hence why Ive been advocating NDP they have most of those policies at their core with a truly decentralised grassroots driven membership
either way anyone that could get this type of policy in place is great for me
An excellent contribution Marcus and very importantly gets the vital issue of ‘where’s the money coming from’ correct by recognising the true worth of the MMT macroeconomic approach and the Job Guarantee. MMT economist Professor Bill Mitchell would however argue that the UBI is unnecessary with a properly implemented JG and a humane social welfare system as well as the UBI being unaffordable at a livable level.
I’m also a member of the Greens and I think the biggest obstacle they face is the lack of a fair proportional representation voting system federally and in all states and territories except Tasmania and the ACT – that use the Hare-Clark voting system. If we had proportional representation voting then the Greens would have about 10% of MP’s in the important lower houses of our parliaments (that would result in about 15 House of Representatives MP’s for the Greens instead of one currently) and so the Greens would have much more political influence and could join coalition governments as a sizable partner which could in turn further increase their vote. New Zealand and Germany have a different variant of proportional representation voting called Mixed Member Proportional voting which appears to work well.
The Greens unlike most parties allow members to contribute to policy development which might be a good avenue worth pursuing. Depending on your personal attributes offering yourself as a candidate for local, state or federal government is probably the quickest way to gain influence as long as you’re not one of those untrustworthy DUAL CITIZENS?
Poor Richard Di Natale gets branded as being right of centre which is unfair as the professional image is deliberate to counter the ‘feral irresponsible Greens protestor’ image and Greens policies remain far more progressive than Labor.
As already mentioned, the key question is – how do we get such worthy policies implemented?
I really have tried to warm to Richard Di Natale, because I believe in much of the Greens ethos.
My issue is that to appear “professional” one has to emulate a corporate stiff? Do we have a broader view of what constitutes capable? I guess not.
Which brings me to “dual citizens” – WTF? Complete idiots are rewarded with power beyond belief – Dutton, but because someone has dual citizen and is competent, capable and valuable politician they are ousted immediately.
I would say the Greens are being subjected to a witch-hunt, if a certain megalomaniac POTUS hadn’t corrupted the meaning.
I agree the Greens are far more progressive than Labor – which places them as a target for anyone slight tinged conservative.
Yes diannaart, both Larrisa Waters and Scott Ludlum have more credibility in one of their toe nails than all of that possesed by that clone of Himmler. The Queensland police dummy I mean, not dear leader. I suppose they could both do with a rest before bouncing back if they want?
Richard is who is, like all of us, and being a doctor the suit should be OK. I think he is progressive, compassionate, an environmentalist and effective.
I do know Richard Di Natale has a difficult just made more difficult. I wish him power, integrity and resilience.
All this fuss over people who happened to be born in darkest Canada and mysterious New Zealand, who left these nations as babes or toddlers and were Naturalised in their teens as Australians. Had me wondering if my Australian heritage of 6 generations was good enough.
Clearly being part of the oldest culture in the world, our First Nation People isn’t good enough. Paranoia has taken over the LNP (well, they always were paranoid) and now has them causing harm indiscriminately. I know we wanted the LNP to get over racism, but not… like… this.
Besides what about that senator from Tasmania, Eric Abetz, he has also sworn the Oath of Allegiance when he participated in his Naturalisation ceremony – just as Larissa and Scott did… but… did he tell Germany? Most nations require a written statement of renouncement of allegiance, before they can be said to not hold dual citizenship. Abetz has not provided this final proof – he claims to have written to Germany, but never received confirmation. Nor has he produced any written statements. Of course, Eric is from the far right politically – is this an important distinction between this man and Scott and Larissa?
So true and when our constitution was written by the British parliament; the Brits, Australians, Canadians and Kiwis all had the same nationality/passports as they were all British subjects so that clause is potentially inapplicable to Larissa and Scott. The clause was aimed at ‘really dangerous aliens’ like Germans, Italians, Dutchies and others, so definitely Abetz should go. 😉
Abetz’s political ideology alone is reason for suspicion. 😛
I have enjoyed our exchange.
Pretty much the same policy positions as the New Democracy Party.
If the Greens don’t co-operate come ion us.