Use Your Vote Wisely  

Posted by Big Gav in , ,

I'll be away for the next week from Saturday, so you won't see any commentary from me in the lead up to election day.

I'm sure regular readers won't need any urging, but just in case you are deaf and blind (as one guy who read for over 2 years before "resigning" in a huff a couple of months back clearly was) - Peak Energy recommends turfing the Rodent and his government out on their backsides and hurling rotten fruit at them.

They've done nothing (in fact negative things) about global warming, they've done nothing about our energy security (other than shamefully backing the American oil war in Iraq and destroying our traditional freedoms thanks to their fear mongering and draconian "anti terror" legislation) and they've done nothing to position the country to be successful at anything other than digging up dirt and selling it overseas - they've simply ridden on the coattails of Paul Keating and the China boom.

And they're a bunch of pork barreling hypocrites.

So vote for a minor party first and put the coalition last in your preferences - especially in the Senate.

Hopefully the country will head off in a new, better direction in December.


Rex   says 12:32 AM

I'll second that!

Anonymous   says 11:02 AM

I third that. And no comments about 'political partisanship' please. This goes WAY beyond left -right games.


Anonymous   says 11:32 AM

Couldn't have said it better myself. Thats probably why i read your Blog everyday. Keep up the good work Big Gav.

I concur.

Anonymous   says 10:46 AM

Hi Gav - here's hoping the Greens get a real boost which (hopefully)
will cause a bit of a wake up to the other parties. I am hopeful too that Labor has a bit hidden from the MSM on the climate
change issue as well and will trot it out after the election

Thanks for all your hard and honest blogging

Tom B

Voting for small parties 1st works in the house of Reps but isn't guaranteed to work in the Senate.

Since 1950 we Australians have been doing more than our fair share of climate stoking. Now, that the climate is responding rapidly, and all too clearly as the science always said it would, we look for ways of implementing climate mitigation and find ourselves hampered by a government and bureaucracy badly infested with stokers fossilised against change.

The adversarial Westminster system of government is inadequate to the task at hand as we all need to be pulling together to make the massive changes required in time to avoid climate disaster. But how can we get the best climate outcome, given the system we have, for the 2007 elections?

The house of Reps voting is straight forward; your vote is counted to the last as a full vote. For instance the climate options, in order of emissions cuts, for Page and Richmond are Greens, Democrats, Labour respectively and the remaining climate disaster candidates go in any order you like after that. If the Greens get in the climate wins but if they don't then you've given your full vote to the 2nd or 3rd climate option.

But the Senate voting isn't straight forward. Although your 1st preference is counted it is possible that that's all and your options could languish amongst the almost 1/7 of the vote not being used to elect one of the 6 Senators in NSW. Whether or not your preferences are counted depends critically on how others in NSW vote - something you can only guess at when you vote.

The candidates for the NSW 2007 Senate election with the best climate policies for emissions cuts are Socialist Alliance (SA), What Women Want (WWW), Climate Change Coalition (CCC), Greens and Democrats respectively. However if you consider overall climate policy the order condenses to SA, WWW then Greens. It would be refreshing to have SA and WWW represented in the Senate along with the Greens. But in reality the fickleness of Senate voting can be cruel. In 2004, Christine Milne with 93% of a quota barely scraped in on preferences and in Vic the Greens had 5 times the primary vote of Family First but it was FF that got the 6th Senate seat on preferences - mostly from Labour.

For the climate I think the best strategy is to suppress our dreams and try for the safest option - voting 1 above the line for the Greens or, if voting below the line, to vote Greens, SA, WWW, Dems/CCC and so on. With enough 1st preferences the Greens vote won't be redistributed thus giving us the best chance of getting a NSW Green. SA and WWW preferences are honest to their policies but CCC preferences raise question marks. In NSW CCC preference the climate sceptical Fishing Party before the Greens, in Qld CCC preferences Pauline before Labour, in Vic CCC has Labour before Greens, in WA CCC has the Greens near the end after heaps of climate disaster parties. In the 2 other places where CCC is standing, SthA and ACT, their preferencing is as you would expect for a climate party.

Of the 25 NSW groups with above the line voting, apart from the Greens, there are 3 groups (SA, WWW, Lab) with preference flows to the Greens the other 21 groups either have the Greens preferenced last or in the tail end of their preferences.

Conservatives for Climate and Environment who are also standing candidates for the Senate are promoting a market based approach to climate, they avoid emissions regulation and their policies are inadequate for their aims. They preference the Greens near last.

So I suggest that all of us who want even some climate representation this election put away our favourite dreams and just concentrate on Greens.

Alan Roberts

Anonymous   says 4:02 PM

I agree with you about some of the CCC preferences, for example in WA, but in Victoria they are a possibility. There they preference The Democrats, whose policies are quite good, right after themselves, their 4th preference for Labour is only a token gesture because that senator is certain to be elected so their vote will go to the 5th preference which is the Greens. So a vote for them, in Victoria at least, is an indication that serious Climate Change action is important to you. They are also highly preferenced by a few of the other parties so they have quite a good chance of being elected. They could even get elected AS WELL AS THE GREENS. This would be a rather powerful message about the degree of concern about Climate Change.

There is a Senate Calculator on the ABC News site at:

You can enter your own best guesses for how the parties will perform and get a quick conclusion of who will get elected.

For example try the following scenario:

Start with the default figures which come up for Victoria then:

Climate Change Coalition add 2%
Australian Democrats add 1%
What Women Want add 0.9%
Senator On-Line add 0.7%
Australian Labor Party add 2%
Liberal/National Coalition subtract 6%
Family First add 1%
Conservatives for Climate and Environment add 0.7%
Australian Greens add 1%

leave the others as they are, hit "Calculate" and watch the outcome.

There is nothing particularly implausible about these figures and there is some
leeway in the numbers.

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