Category: Elections

How Labor lost the climate debate

These two videos go a long way toward explaining why the Australian Labor Party won the 2007 election and lost in 2013. They show how Labor changed the way it framed climate change. In 2007 they correctly identified it as the most important issue of our time: By 2012 (when Labor were already in an …

Continue reading

Anti-politics 6: Delegitimizing the Abbott government

This is the final part of a series about the Australian “anti-politics” attitude and how the green left should respond to it. Part 1 lays out evidence for the attitude and speculates on its causes. Part 2 argues the green left needs to distance itself from political elites. Part 3 discusses how we should communicate …

Continue reading

Australian election reveals anti-politics attitude

Last month’s Australian federal election results (summarized here) displayed a disturbing trend toward widespread disengagement from politics. Both major parties were disappointed: Labor received its lowest vote since the Great Depression, and despite winning the election the Liberal/National Coalition saw its lowest Senate vote since World War 2. Clearly an increasing number of voters are …

Continue reading

Australian election 2013 wrapup

The dust is settling after the Australian federal election last week, and I guess I must be out of touch because I am struggling to understand what voters were thinking. All election statistics in this post are from the Australian Electoral Commission unless otherwise noted. House of Representatives results In the House of Representatives, Tony …

Continue reading

Don’t let Abbott take your vote for granted

Australia votes in a federal election today, and according to opinion polls the Liberal/National Coalition, led by Tony Abbott, appears poised to sail into government on a wave of discontent with the incumbent Labor government. All but one of Australia’s newspapers have endorsed the Coalition. If you’re thinking of voting for the Coalition, beware of …

Continue reading

Let’s make this Australia’s climate election

Over the bleached bones and jumbled residues of numerous civilizations are written the pathetic words: ‘Too late.’ – Martin Luther King Jr. As Australia, the world’s largest coal exporter, goes to the polls, the window of opportunity for humanity to act on climate change is closing fast. Anthropogenic global warming is the largest and most …

Continue reading

Abbott’s last-minute policies reveal true colors

Throughout the Australian election campaign the Liberal/National Coalition and their leader Tony Abbott have blatantly evaded any scrutiny, either on their budgetary plans or, more importantly, the details of their climate policy. Abbott has been saying for two years “we’ll announce our full fiscal position in good time before the election”. Today, having waited until …

Continue reading

A closer look at Tony Abbott’s climate policy

Three days to the Australian election, and both major political parties are still planning 20 years of climate inaction. I’ve written at length about the climate policy of the incumbent Labor Government led by Kevin Rudd, who wants to move from Australia’s existing fixed carbon price to a 20-year emissions trading scheme (ETS) with a …

Continue reading

Will Abbott hand power to multinationals?

Last month I argued there was little difference between Australia’s two major political parties at this election, but I’ve recently discovered there is actually a big difference. It’s called the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), and it could take away Australia’s power to regulate transnational corporations, yet few citizens have even heard of it. The TPP is …

Continue reading

Voting below-the-line made easy

On Sunday I posted a guide to the 50 or so minor parties running in the Australian federal election, and on Thursday I posted an explanation of how Australia’s preferential voting system allows you to vote for a minor party without “wasting your vote”. Although that’s easy enough in the House of Representatives (the small …

Continue reading