Category: Elections

Aug 26 2013

Can a new political party save the planet?

In the course of researching my guide to Australian minor political parties, I discovered the new not-yet-registered party “Save the Planet”. It is a single issue party advocating an emergency response to climate change, comparable to the remobilization of the economy during World War 2. This is because the party recognizes atmospheric greenhouse gas levels …

Continue reading

Aug 25 2013

Guide to Australian minor political parties

Australian politics has recently seen a proliferation of new minor parties, perhaps because the hung parliament has shown people how minor parties can play an influential role. I’ve been researching each of the options, in particular their attitude to climate change. Here’s what I found out! The following is a full list of Australian minor …

Continue reading

Aug 24 2013

Tony Abbott’s manipulation of public perception

Australia’s Opposition Leader Tony Abbott says in today’s newspaper: The problem with the Parliament at the moment is that almost nothing is ever said which isn’t basically crude political head-banging. Both sides are guilty but I think that as prime minister Gillard was particularly bad at it. Abbott’s hypocrisy is staggering. In reality, it is …

Continue reading

Aug 15 2013

Has Rudd joined the Liberal Party?

Eleven days into the Australian federal election campaign and I’m thoroughly sick of the non-debate so far. It seems the two major parties, Labor and the Liberal/National Coalition, agree on almost everything important. It’s no wonder the Greens have chosen the election slogan “standing up for what matters”. The list of Liberal-like policies adopted by …

Continue reading

Aug 14 2013

Australia’s major parties plan 20 years of climate inaction

Australia’s two major political parties – the incumbent Labor government led by Kevin Rudd and Liberal-National Coalition opposition led by Tony Abbott – present themselves as having quite different policies on climate change. Labor, together with the Greens, has legislated a fixed carbon price soon to morph into an internationally-linked emissions trading scheme (ETS). The …

Continue reading

Aug 11 2013

Scrutinizing the business lobby’s election agenda

Australia’s federal election is fast approaching (recently rescheduled for 7 September). Recently the Business Council of Australia (BCA) released an “Action Plan for Enduring Prosperity”. Given the disproportionate influence of the business lobby on the non-green political parties, the BCA Action Plan deserves as much scrutiny as the policy documents released by political parties. The …

Continue reading

Jul 19 2013

If I were Prime Minister…

I recently wrote a submission to the Australian independent Climate Change Authority’s Caps and Targets Review. Unfortunately, indications so far suggest the Review may be heading in a direction different from what I had hoped. I do not want to have wasted all the effort I put into my submission, whose level of detail almost …

Continue reading

Jul 08 2013

Eulogy for the hung parliament

The last week of June was the last sitting week of Australia’s 43rd parliament and first hung parliament since 1943. It also turned out to be the week in which the Prime Minister who presided over the hung parliament, Julia Gillard, was replaced by her Labor Party colleague and predecessor Kevin Rudd. ABC journalist Chris …

Continue reading

Jun 27 2013

Rudd’s return: bad news for climate action?

I probably don’t need to tell Australian readers that Kevin Rudd has been reinstated as Prime Minister of Australia and leader of the Australian Labor Party, replacing Julia Gillard who succeeded him three years ago. I see Rudd’s return as a victory of appearance over substance, intuition over logic, personality over policy, treachery over teamwork, …

Continue reading

Jun 14 2013

What if the Liberals keep the carbon price?

As I have discussed previously, the Liberal Party of Australia have promised in certain terms to repeal the carbon tax. I still find it difficult to believe there is any way they can wiggle out of their extremely strong pronouncements on the matter, at least as long as Tony Abbott remains their leader. It seems …

Continue reading