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Scott Ludlam for President?

scott ludlam

Photo: abc.net.au

Imagine having a head of State who was calm, articulate, honest, dignified, compassionate, knowledgeable, respectful, practical, hard-working. The more I see of Scott Ludlam the more these words echo in my mind.

His maiden speech to the Senate in 2008 conjured up a future vision in which the right kinds of technology are used to deliver the right kinds of human outcomes, while the wrong kinds are left on the scrapheap of history as being inefficient and outmoded. The speech was peppered with words like “Pelton generators”, hot rocks technology, “large solar thermal plants”, “world-class broadband”, “fast, affordable mass transit”. He wondered what the human race might become if we harnessed our engineering potential, our skill with tools, in a much better way than we currently are — a way that would not be inherently harmful to our planet.

Renai LeMay wrote on Delimiter

“although the speech does build visions of a better future for humanity, its tone is not frivolous. Instead, the speech is delivered with a kind of cool implacability. A kind of quiet, relentless determination to see that vision realised, no matter how many obstacles stand in the way. The speaker is not a hothead. He contains an extremely slow burning fire within his modest frame. The speech doesn’t build castles in the air. It builds castles on the ground that will slowly but surely reach the air.”

The speech ends with a call to arms:

“We know that the media dines out on the spectacle of conflict and abuse which our Westminster system seems to imply.  But in my very short time here it is already apparent that a vast amount of what the Senate does is based on collaboration, hard work and a certain grudging respect for different points of view. I really look forward to working with you as we bring our collective efforts, wisdom and good grace to bear on the challenges which confront us all.”

Those good intentions were more than just words as Ludlam has worked tirelessly in many areas. He is calm and methodical on the Senate floor and always seems to have a good understanding of the topic at hand.

The speech he gave on March 4 to a near empty Senate chamber, welcoming Prime Minister Tony Abbott to WA, went viral on social media and should be seen by all Western Australian voters.

As an example of his valuable work, in March it was announced that

“Greens Senator Scott Ludlam has taken out the Planning Champion Award at the 2014 National Awards for Planning Excellence for his work on urban infill development.

Senator Ludlam took out the award for his collaborative work with the WA Property Council on one of Perth’s most controversial planning issues: infill housing.

Senator Ludlam and the Property Council are calling for urban infill development in seven key transport corridors, including Charles Street, Fitzgerald Street, Scarborough Beach Road and Stirling Highway.

The judges of the awards said Senator Ludlam, who is the Greens spokesman on sustainable cities, infrastructure, housing and communications , was one of the most progressive, collaborative and prolific champions for better planning in Australia’s cities.

His other planning achievements included the WA 2.0 project, a light rail plan for Perth and Bike vision 2029.”

Scott Ludlam missed out by 14 votes in the September election, prompting the Greens to seek a recount, which changed the result in his favour before the debacle of the missing votes made the whole thing null and void.

The ABC’s election analyst Antony Green has calculated that “if you re-run last September’s Western Australian Senate election with the same votes, but using the new Senate preference tickets, then the result of the WA Senate re-election on April 5 would be 3 Liberal, 2 Labor and 1 Palmer United,” he said.

“For the re-election, several micro-parties have directed preferences in a way that now helps Labor to reach its second quota and makes it harder for the Green’s Scott Ludlam to win without a significant rise in his vote.

The Sports Party does not receive as many helpful preferences as last September. There is a subtle shift in the structure of the micro-party alliance, with a more obvious split between left-leaning and right-leaning micro-parties.

Unless the Liberals and Nationals fall dramatically short of three quotas, there are enough micro-party preferences floating around to ensure they win three seats between them. The biggest danger for the Liberals is probably losing a seat to the Nationals rather than to any other party.”

Voters can direct their own preferences by taking an extra 10 minutes to vote below the line and number every box thus making sure your vote goes where you intend it to and undermining the crazy deals done by all parties.

Which brings me to the title of this article.

Anyone watching Bronwyn Bishop’s performance as Speaker will realise that our current Parliament is a debacle under her stewardship. It makes a total mockery of the system and renders chamber sitting a pointless exercise where nothing is achieved, though it could be argued that this has been the case for a long time.

Senate elections have become a joke with ballot papers the size of tablecloths and organising preference deals an industry within itself. Few people understand the mechanism and it can result in candidates who receive a miniscule number of votes being elected, some of whom are patently not qualified to make decisions on the governing of this country.

The two party system is leaving many people feeling unsatisfied as they see little leadership from either of the major parties. Wouldn’t it be good to be able to trust the person in the top job to be making decisions in the best interests of the future of our country rather than always feeling like they are saying things just to get re-elected.

We need to change our political system. The archaic ritual of the Westminster system has seen its day. It is well past time that Australia truly became a nation in its own right with a head of state who actually lives in the country and has some idea of our political needs. Could Scott Ludlam be that person? He is young but shows great potential and to lose him from the political arena would be a great shame.

A Republic is still quite a way off, though Tony’s dames and knights ridiculosity may have given the debate another kick start. Today there are more pressing issues, namely the Senate election in WA tomorrow.

To the people of Western Australia, I would ask you to think about what sort of future you want for your children and consider wisely the importance of your contribution to keeping the Senate as a genuine House of Review rather than a rubber stamp.

Can we rely on the largesse and altruism of Gina Rinehart to show loyalty to her employees, to use some of her vast wealth to boost local employment rather than importing 457 visa workers, and to willingly pay taxation on the billions she makes developing our resources? Can we rely on the Coalition and the Palmer United Party to do what must be done to address climate change? Are health and education priorities for conservative governments?

As I have said before, our fate lies in your hands Western Australia.   Think carefully before you vote.

53 comments

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  1. Sir ScotchMistery

    Hear hear.

  2. Matt Martin

    But would he be a dame or a knight?

  3. DanDark

    Scott Ludlum is a smart young man,
    with a bright future ahead of him,
    Politics need people with integrity, compassion,morals and tolerance
    who are in touch with the ordinary punter
    He already has all the characteristics of being a great leader
    And I wish him well in the Senate revote tomorrow

  4. Wayne Turner

    I agree,

    With this countries terrible track record of having no clue of what decent candidates looks like 🙁 I’m sure he will lose his senate seat in WA 🙁

  5. J Marsh

    He certainly seem to be a man with a vision ! One that can be achieved if the pollies stopped worrying about re election and got on with the job

  6. john921fraser

    <

    Scott Ludlam for President.

    Mark Dreyfus for Prime Minister.

    Sir Pository for a very sad footnote in Australia's history.

  7. Pingback: Scott Ludlam for President? « The Australian Independent Media Network « SNAFU

  8. Kaye Lee

    On Wednesday 12 March WA Greens Senator Scott Ludlam presented for AGDA WA at Perth City Farm. Scott’s presentation was focused on his plans for the future design of Perth. This included a comprehensive set of costed plans and initiatives to become a sustainable and connected city. In particular switching to 100% renewable energy by 2029, upgrading public transport infrastructure with light-rail and safe bike lanes, creating Greenways (a protected network of urban forest, bushland, wetlands and parks) and reducing homelessness with affordable housing programs.

  9. Stephen Tardrew

    Dan thanks for that.

    What! What! What! What! What! the hell is going on. This guy is a damn idiot. See ya later Labor if you can’t do better than this.

    Scot Ludlam is an angle of mercy compared to this dill.

    And we are hoping Labor has learned a lesson. He should have been immediately disqualified the moment he made this statement.

  10. john921fraser

    <

    @Kaye Lee

    Preaching to the converted here.

    Got anyone in mind for P.M. ?

  11. Kaye Lee

    Dan,

    Who is this guy, a Trojan horse?

    “Bullock, who worked with Abbott more than 30 years ago to take over the Sydney University Liberal club ….”

    Unfortunately this is my generation. I fought against these guys and their attitudes at Sydney University in the 70s. To think they have finally gained credence is unbelievable to me. They were rightly dismissed as RWNJs 40 years ago. Have we gone THAT far back in time that the same battles must be fought all over again? And for these words to come from a member of the Labor Party is too much to take. All the more reason to vote below the line. He might be number 1 on their ticket, doesn’t have to be on yours.

  12. Roswell

    The first thing I want to see is a new Opposition leader. Tony Abbott springs to mind.

    But who for PM? To quote Bill Hayden, the drover’s dog could do a better job.

  13. abbienoiraude

    What a wonderful nod to an impressive political representative.

    I feel it a little closer to home than most that the ideas, ideals and visions for a sustainable future that Senator Ludlam expresses so well. I have ( luckily) ‘inherited’ a wonderful son in law who is a ‘sustainable environmental engineer’. He started ( and now has completed) his Masters degree when all the go was on commercial buildings being created, designed and supported to be self sustaining and totally GREEN.

    Now?
    His qualifications ( in some ways) are being pissed up against the wall as this Fed and State Govt pull back the funding, encouraging subsidies and grants to companies to file for ‘green buildings’.

    We are wasting time under these Conservative parties (Fed and State). We should be building cities, towns and areas of great sustainability, hurrying toward a future that requires less digging and more technology to be independent upon the vagaries of big oil, big mining and overseas power.

    We could have been an example ( and previously were on our way) to the rest of the world on how to utilise our sun, our wind, our ocean and our vast outback areas for geothermal power. Instead we are messing around looking backwards as well as propping up individuals who do not have Australia and Australians best interest at heart. No future, no care, no compassion, no vision.

    Time to not only be a republic, but to put the Tories back in their box and send them back to the ‘Old Country’ where they would find even there they do not belong.

    Good luck Scott for tomorrow. Please WA show leadership to the rest of your fellow Australians and vote carefully and with a care.

  14. abbienoiraude

    (Sorry; “independent FROM the vagaries….”)

  15. Kaye Lee

    “Who for PM”

    Quite honestly, I am so disillusioned with our current system of government that I find that a depressing question. The qualities that are needed to be a PM nowadays are those that got Tony Abbott elected, those that make Joe Hockey sound credible as he talks about debt and deficit, those that allow Scott Morrison to claim our asylum seeker policy a success, those that allow Greg Hunt to claim credit for removing environmental protection laws and approving coal mining, deforestation and dumping on the reef, and removing a price on carbon.

    To get elected you have to do market research, find what resonates with people who like talk back radio and the Telegraph, leak populist policies that can easily be changed to discussion papers if there is backlash, use slogans and misrepresentation, be theatrical, adopt an image, control the message and pay people to sell it.

    To be PM now you have to have your photo taken a lot. You have to wear the right clothes that present an image of who voters would like you to be. You have to be good at blaming other people and digging up dirt and making snide comments. You have to have wealthy patrons.

    Change the job criteria and I may be able to come up with a suggestion but I cannot admire anyone who is good at the things that got Tony Abbott the job which is probably what you need in this current shit fight.

  16. Kaye Lee

    Tony Windsor!! bring him back!!!

  17. john921fraser

    <

    @Kaye Lee

    Bullock got an endorsement from Albo this morning on ABC radio.

  18. Wayne Turner

    Thank’s for that link,in your post Dan 😉

    Oh dear what a moronic dickhead traitor – How? Where? And why? Do Labor produce such terrible traitor candiates ie: future Graham Richardson’s.

  19. Dan Rowden

    John Fraser,

    Bullock got an endorsement from Albo this morning on ABC radio.

    Well, he doesn’t really have any choice in the matter now, but I bet he nearly dry reached a few times in doing so.

  20. john921fraser

    <

    Perhaps you will think about the DLP Dan ?

  21. Stephen Tardrew

    Have one on me Dave. I’m throwing up.

  22. Stephen Tardrew

    Dan, Dan, Dan, Dan sorry mate.

  23. Kaye Lee

    John,

    Do people really think new crockery is all that important?

    Re Madigan: “He did, however, have some complimentary words to say about Senator Xenophon, who he has teamed up with on issues such as an Australian-made crockery set for Parliament House and Australian-made flags for Commonwealth buildings.”

  24. Wayne Turner

    Albo by endorsing this guy,showed why I could NEVER be party in politics.I could NEVER endorse such a traitor dickhead.In Albo’s position I would either NOT talk to the media unitl this senate election is over,or sadly be seen as a traitor myself by bagging out what a horrible disgraceful candidate he is.To be a pollie in a political party,you often have to be a “sell-out” and I couldn’t do it.

    Who/s in Labor got this Bullock’s I mean bullock’s of a person to represent Labor?

    Or is it the case he got the position because of his “union position” no questions asked?? – If this,this MUST change in Labor.

  25. cordannao

    Thanks for your (as usual) open and frank opinion. Just wish I was in WA now so I could vote for Scott Ludlam. Don’t think I’m alone in that thought.

  26. Dan Rowden

    Wayne,

    There’s no doubt Bollock’s, um, Bullock’s endorsement was a result of factional dealing and rewards for “services rendered” and such, but at this time in our political history that sort of thing just can’t happen. The bigger picture is infinitely more important for Labor. Question is, do they see that “big picture” for what it is?

    I really suspect they’re unable to see the political forest for the factional trees.

  27. Wayne Turner

    I figured Dan.The one’s that go along with it are weak,and Labor by picking people like this are damaging themselves more and more…. Certainly inbred 🙁

  28. john921fraser

    <

    @Kaye Lee

    "Do people really think new crockery is all that important?"

    "Mighty oaks from little acorns grow".

    I just want it to be a start.

    Better than the b/s Sir Pository offers.

  29. Kaye Lee

    The Senate preference tickets tell a tale about Louise and Joe. Most of them follow the order within a party group but some of the smaller parties have different opinions about the Labor candidates.

    Greens: Joe 30, Louise 15

    Wikileaks: Joe 32, Louise 10

    Rise up Australia: Joe 42, Louise 77

    Australian Christians: Joe 12, Louise 47

  30. Dan Rowden

    Kaye Lee,

    For the first time in my life I am going to advocate that people vote Green. I implore Western Australians to vote Green. It’s imperative that the Coalition not gain any Senate seats but I’d much, much rather the Greens triumph than have a pseudo-Tory take a place for Labor.

    My Party has lost the plot in a very serious way. May as well call themselves the New DLP. I need a drink. What time is it? Ah, close enough ….

  31. randalstella

    Bullock is Graeme Campbell (Kalgoorlie) all over again. And more. They do far more harm than the temporary benefit of attracting right-wing votes.They compromise the message of the Party.
    At least Campbell won a HOR seat for Labor; rather than messing up the teaming which any Senate campaign has to involve.
    Rudimentary thinkers like this bod have no future in progressive politics in an increasingly complex world. Labor needs a clear message; and its tolerance of this sort of brawler suggests that – organisationally – they are not serious.
    How could an Abbott supporter share caucus with Albanese, and require Albanese to come out in support of him hours before an election? It has got to be the organisation that is at fault.
    Bullock has the support of right-wing Unions,and thus has no.1 Senate position – and bound to be elected. His comments can only be interpreted as deliberately undermining his no. 2; putting her election in doubt. It can only benefit the anti-Union Abbott – who Bullock applauds. This is a brazen act of treachery.

    It has to be said that his contempt for the Greens is shared insistently on Laborite sites.

  32. Anomander

    The very first paragraph says it all: “Imagine having a head of State who was calm, articulate, honest, dignified, compassionate, knowledgeable, respectful, practical, hard-working.”.

    Yes please! I Imagine this every single day as a way to divert my attention away from the disaster that is our current Neanderthal PM, who is; irrational, inarticulate, dishonest, undignified, heartless, ignorant, disrespectful, an ideologue, and working for himself and his wealthy mates; to the detriment of our nation, ore environment and our whole society.

  33. abbienoiraude

    See @ Anomander you did it again.
    Perfectly said!

  34. Dissenter

    Perhaps the cynical point to Bullocks pre-selection IS GAINING the voters from his UNION. THERE are a lot of them.
    For SHORT TERM value it is hoped it WORKS.
    AFTER all THE KEY IS LABOR/GREENS control in the Senate after all.
    KAYE LEE: I too have IMMENSE admiration and RESPECT for Scott LUDLUM and WISH him well. HE MOBILISED THE ATTENTION OF AUSTRALIA with his SPEECH and TUNED all Australians IN to the Importance of the SENATE ELECTION.
    THIS was a COURAGEOUS and INTELLIGENT strategy and because of the ENORMOUS assistance he CREATED for OPPOSITION parties I wish him well tomorrow,
    HE is an Extremely intelligent politician with futuristic ideas for AUSTRALIA NOW.

  35. Don Winther

    Dear WA voters, please dont vote thinking that Abbott will get rid of the Mining Tax or the Carbon tax, he may change the names but he can’t afford to remove them because he needs cash, lots of it. He will sell anything that he can get his hands on. He needs money because in just 6 months he has destroyed the economy of both South Australia and Victoria through his ignorance and arrogance towards the manufacturing sector. He will be needing lots money to pay welfare payments to the tens may-be hundreds of thousands of people who’s jobs he has so easily destroyed. “Made in Australia” jobs for Australians.
    He is also buying two big new shinny luxury Jets ( Boeing 777 or A320, $800 million or more ) because the 737s are too small for his big head. And also the 7 new luxury German built Bullet Proof BMWs $525,000 each. Yes Tony we know your heart is in Australia but you would be much smarter keeping it inside your new BMW especially if you ever go to South Australia.

  36. Jeannette Oliver

    Governments are deconstructing the Egalitarian System to reconconstruct the Capitalist System. I’m not a Greens Party fan & I don’t worship or put my faith in ALP & LNP. However, I certainly would not like to see Australia become a Muslim State.

  37. Kaye Lee

    Jeannette,

    There is absolutely no chance of Australia becoming a Muslim state. We certainly have some crazies here – I can think of one guy who was born here but adopted Islam as his faith as a young man and now goes hey look at me on tv. He is a bogan who talks rot and has no standing in the Australian Muslim community whose leaders are in the main very reasonable people.

    It is inevitable in a multicultural society that there will occasionally be cultural friction but it is far less common here than in most places ( though I can think of some glaring examples like our treatment of Aborigines and the Cronulla riots). It is up to us to minimise that through education and helping migrants to adjust to a new way of life.

    People come here fleeing the atrocities that so many Australians condemn and fear. Are we to say to them welcome, you are safe now, or are we going to slam the door, say piss off, go back to that life because we don’t want to know about it – it’s uncomfortable for us.

    If there is friction between groups in our society then we need to mediate them to address the needs of all residents. Hatred, fear, ignorance and intolerance only hold us back.

  38. Dissenter

    #@ Don Wither, You forgot to mention the ALARMING costs of offshore detention and the profligate spending on that and the DISTURBING fact that the Australian TAXPAYER is paying for NOT ONE, NOT TWO BUT THREE RESIDENCES for ABBOTT and marg STILL lives at their own home.
    COST for3 residences????
    WHY 3? Well THE LODGE is UNDERGOING renovation SO it has to be KIRRIBILLI HOUSE because that is thje MOST EXPENSIVE to maintain aND THEN THERE ARE THE TRAVEL EXPENSES TO AND from TOFACTOR IN AND THEN THERE IS THE STAFFING OF ALL 3 houses BECAUSE SECURITY DETAILS AND OTHER STAFF WILL HAVE TO BE ON SITE AT ALL TIMES…… AND THEN THE CARS AND THEN THE JETS ….
    but but SIr AUSTRALIA is having a BUDGET EMERGENCY and we all have to PRACTISE AUSTERITY.
    WHY NOT YOU ABBOTT and CO???

  39. Pingback: Scott Ludlam for President? | lmrh5

  40. lmrh5

    Reblogged this on lmrh5.

  41. Dissenter

    Sorry all I got it wrong- 4 RESIDENCEs because there is the rental house costing a mere 100,000 this year with no one living in it and then there is the current accomodation with the Police academy is it? NOT free EITHER.
    IS THIS PROFLIGATE?
    THIS IS HOW they GOVERN. SAY ONE THING and DO the complete OPPOSITE forthemselves.
    Is it ONE MILLION this year ALONE for ABBOTTs accomodation>
    just guessing.

  42. Whalething

    Hey Dissenter ….what’s with all the upper case words???

  43. Wascally Wabbott

    Pretty difficult to be president with only 15% of the vote comrade Kaye

  44. Kaye Lee

    I am unaware of any connection with you so perhaps you can explain how we are comrades.

    As far as your statistics are concerned, 54,388 people voted for Tony Abbott – that’s about 0.3% of voters. When he knifed Malcolm Turnbull to get the leadership he got 42 votes from the 85 Liberal MPs – less than half of his own colleagues wanted him.

  45. Wascally Wabbott

    That’s right Kaye “54,388 people voted for Tony Abbott” -> 60% of his constituency, the Green polled 15% there as well….so Scotty and the Greens have a ways to go yet, unless you’re planning a coup of course,
    which is the way most El Presidentes get installed

  46. Kaye Lee

    Murdoch and Rinehart staged a successful coup in 2013 to instal Sir Pository. Only trouble is they chose incompetent front men. It’s easy to carry out smear campaigns, not so easy to make decisions. They are still trying to say it’s all about Labor more than 6 months into office. They sound like children. Hockey either can’t read a budget document or he is purposely lying which seems the more likely with the way he cooked the books in MYEFO. They have no feasible plan for fixing things and are just going to sit there crying for 3 years. The way they are going that will be long enough for them to cause irreparable harm.

  47. Whalething

    Cripes …… when I read stuff such as that, I am starting to understand why people like Palmer and his lot get into Parliament and the Senate.

  48. randalstella

    WW,
    What a major triumph for the human organism that Abbott has come through in that electorate against such odds. Given his form, he should perhaps try Port Adelaide next time.
    It’s a pity that the rest of your post is so silly.

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