It has taken some time for me to reflect on the 2022 Australian election. By far, the most striking aspect of the result is the emergence of 5 new, strong, independent women members. The most interesting of these new “Teal” independents to me is Dr. Monique Ryan who won a seat in Kooyong (Melbourne). Ryan’s campaign is covered in this article. One of the architects of Dr. Ryan’s campaign is political scientist Dr. Ann Capling. About 100 years ago, I went to high school with Ann. She was a force of nature then with an incredible future in front of her. Today, she is still helping to shape that future in the best way.
There are lessons to be learned by other campaigners from Dr. Ryan’s victory. Democracy can still maintain it’s vibrancy when it figures out how to unlock wide-scale participation of the people. Unfortunately, money is still a huge requirement for success. I was shocked at the budget required to win an Australian parliamentary seat; it’s practically American in scope.
While the stain of a climate change denying government has been removed for now, Australia still has a lot of climate skeptics. The job ahead for the Albanese government – whether in minority or majority – will be to chart a course that can lead to steady, sustainable, progressive policy. Economics and world events will make that difficult, but to not act on climate initiatives with greater urgency will lead to catastrophe. For now however, it just seems to be more of the same politics-as-usual in Australia.
- I have only had a casual interest in preference voting in the past but it warrants a second look for Canadian elections. Preference voting in Canadian political party leadership elections has rarely, if ever, lead to a desirable outcome, but that may be due to the distortion of selling party memberships. A leadership electorate is not representative of the broader public in a constituency. The buying and selling of memberships leads to some unusual, and frequently unpredictable, preferential choices.
- What’s with conservative parties labeling themselves as “Liberals”? They do the same thing in British Columbia and it’s ridiculous.
- Australia is the epicentre of the Murdoch empire, so it should be unsurprising to find a lot of negative coverage of the election results…
- Finally, I’m not a student of Aus-english but Ann’s use of the word “rorting” in the first article just made me smile.
… and finally, if you are not interested in posts about politics and world events, try something else on my blog — how about this?