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Voting in the Senate: Who goes on the bottom of the ballot?

All the pundits have been banging on about how most of us don't make up our minds about who we'll vote for in an election until a few days, or even hours, before we enter the little booth to leave our mark on democracy.

Well, I don't know about you but I pretty much made up my mind at birth; I could never vote for a Tory and my class loyalty comes first.

And it's too close to call (maybe), Labor is going to take some seats of the Coalition, a handful of Greens and independents will sit in the lower house and the Senate will be another dog's breakfast.

1000 days detention; 100 days protest? What have we become?

Protest on Nauru

Every day since 20 March, asylum seekers on Nauru have demonstrated in the family camp, OPC3, against almost three years of detention in appalling conditions on Nauru.

While Malcolm Turnbull boasts that there are no longer children in closed detention in Australia, he wilfully holds children, women and families in detention in mouldy tents, and confined, with no future on Nauru.

The only war worth fighting is the war against ignorance

We’re at that stage of the election campaign where many people have had enough. “I just switch off”, we hear, or “politicians are all the same”. Yet we rarely hear about a loss of interest in gossip about Mariah Carey’s wedding, or Johnny Depp’s divorce, or anything at all about the Kardashians. In fact, the world’s massively rich and successful entertainment industry is predicated on humans’ insatiable appetite for the minutiae of dross. 

A nostalgia for an Australia lost

If you’ve followed politics throughout your life, as I have, then you will know about how things have ‘developed’.

I became interested in politics as a young Adelaidean during the 1972 ‘It’s Time’ campaign. I hadn’t realised that my parents were Liberal Party voters until they cheered on Fraser’s crimes against democracy in 1975. This made me start to realise my sense of "right and wrong" was separate to theirs. Each of us 'individuates' like this or, at least, we damned-well should.

Abbott: "referendums or plebiscites? you decide" - The plebs: "please sir, I want some more"

Constitutional crisis?

That was a week, that was. Question, Mr Speaker: If the lying, cheating, rorting, corrupt, secretive, racist, child-molesting, rapist, murderous, incompetent, hypocritical (and I use these words advisedly) buffoons in Canberra offer you a "referendum or a plebiscite?", do you reply "please sir, I want some more?" or is it a Constitutional crisis?

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