Are you completely fed up with Australian politics?
Fed up with career politicians who can’t even read the constitution and renounce claims to privileges granted to them by foreign powers?
Fed up with politicians who seem more interested in rorting perks and entitlements?
Fed up with politicians who seem more interested in what some large corporaion or foreign donor want than what the people who elected them want?
Fed up with politicians working hard to sell off Australia to foreign buyers bit by bit?
Fed up with Free Trade Agreements that close down our factories and make it easier for foreigners to buy what our politicians are eager to sell.
Fed up with politicians who resign and the next day take big fat jobs working for the outfits who were lobbying them the day before they resigned?
But don’t know how you can make a real difference?
PUT THE BIG FOUR IN THE BOTTOM FOUR SPOTS ON YOUR BALLOT.
If you really want to make a difference you must still vote but change how you vote.
Australians just make it too easy for career politicians from the major parties to cruise back in.
You must always put the ALP, Liberals, National Party, Greens last on your ballot in the house of reps and the senate / upper house.
It’s up to you which one you dislike the most and give them the final spot on your ballot and the order you give to the other three in the other bottom 3 spots but you must put ALL four of them in the bottom four spots of your ballot.
You can always put a complete loony at the bottom – even after the major party you hate the most! I will leave it up to you to decide who is a complete loony but most independent candidates are local people who have better things to do than to play party machine games so unless you know they are complete loonies you should give them the benefit of the doubt as at the very least it will help freak out the major party hacks.
If you want better candidates stop voting for whatever party insiders and hacks the Big 4 dish up.
Give your top preferences to ANYONE other than the main parties – even if you don’t know who they are or even if they sound a bit weird. Naturally try to put the best of the Non-Big 4 candidates at the top. Many Non-Big 4 candidates are decent reasonable people and if voters stop voting for Big 4 party hacks a lot more decent and reasonable people will start standing for election.
The point is not that you necessarily want some ‘other’ candidate to win the election but that you want whichever of the Big 4 parties who do win to have sweated it out waiting for preferences to be distributed and to understand that you voted for ANYONE other than the Big 4 parties.
However, if enough people follow this strategy a few Non-Big 4 candidates will start getting elected and that is what the career political hacks from the major parties fear like a vampire fears a wooden stake. People in politics who are not party hacks and who owe the party hacks and ‘numbers’ people nothing.
Chances are the major parties will start taking voters more seriously when voters start making it clear they are sick of being taken for granted.
Do not move your least disliked major party above the fourth from bottom spot UNTIL they act like they deserve it.
Say there are 7 candidates in your electorate.
3 Non-Big 4 candidates and a Liberal Party, ALP, Greens & National Party candidate.
And of the four major parties you least dislike the National Party and most dislike the Liberal Party. As for the ALP and Greens you like them less than the National Party but more than the Liberal Party.
Complete your ballot as follows
1. Non-Big 4 candidate
2. Non-Big 4 candidate
3. Non-Big 4 candidate
4. National Party
7. Liberal Party
This ballot makes it clear you are fed up with the lot of them. It will force every seat to be decided on preferences and will make the results unpredictable. It may help drive cynical career politicians out of parliament as it introduces more uncertainty and risk for their ‘career’ planning.
When the votes are counted your first preference vote initially goes to Non-Big 4 candidate No 1. The election officials will then work out which candidate got the least votes and then move each of those votes to the 2nd preference on each of the ballots received by the candidate with the least number of votes.
Usually this process continues until a candidate has more than 50% of the votes.
Usually this means one of the big 4 parties after all the Non-Big 4 candidates have been knocked out and their votes are been allocated to the next preference.
But not necessarily if enough people are putting the major parties in the bottom 4 spots on their ballot. If that happens a candidate who is not from one of the big four will be elected.
If the four major parties want you to give them a spot above the bottom four make them EARN it.
Voting strategically costs nothing and EVERYONE can do it.
PUT THE BIG FOUR IN THE BOTTOM FOUR SPOTS ON YOUR BALLOT.
Yep good and proven strategy
I suspect there is only one circumstance in which this suggestion would work. If all Australian voters pre-committed to vote according to this formula. Otherwise, I suggest that there would be a huge trend towards more analytical and astute voters assigning their political power to more casual, less informed and careless voters. I am all for knocking off self-interested careerist but this method is very unlikely to work.
I haven’t thought this idea through fully at all. But what about if at every general election, there were an extra national voting option to vote out “your top ten most miserable politicians”. The top ten elected across Australia would go. If they happened to win in their own electorate, their party could nominate a replacement. If an independent, the seat would go to the next highest vote.
I can assure you that numerous careerists would get the heave-ho. As well, it would remarkably improve the level of rationality, civility and fair play in the Parliament. Australians deserve a right to vote “out” as well as vote “in”. Take back some of the power from the parties.
The difficulty with your proposal is that it would require a change to the current system to be introduced by the Big 3 parties. Why would they do that.
Whereas the “put the Big 3 at the bottom of your ballot” can be done right now by every voter.
There does not need to be any pre-commitment. Just do it.
People already see the difference when elections are close and parties depend on preferences. The parties can see the preference flows. If they depend on preferences from Sustainable Australia, the Greens, One Nation, Shooters Fishers Farmers or high profile independents like Nick Xenophon, Jackie Lambi or Andrew Wilkie they start taking the issues promoted by those candidates much more seriously.
Start electing a few more Non-Big 3 candidates and things will get ‘real’ much more quickly.
Not Jackie Lambie anymore.
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At the risk of sounding like a smarty pants I have been doing this for years, in fact I stopped voting for the mainstream – including the Greens – over ten years ago, with the battle being in what order they occupy the bottom of the ballot. I usually give the very bottom honour to the corporate patsies at the Liberals, I despise their dribble the most. When I resided in the Victorian state seat of Prahran in 2014 I strategically gave my vote to the Greens (in spite of the fact that I despise them) only so I could be sure of getting rid of Clem Newton Brown and Denis Naptime’s stupidly expensive East-West tunnel – what do you know, the Greens scraped in by a few hundred votes with preferences. Sometimes your vote actually does make a crucial difference.
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Yes – quite a few people have been voting this way for a long time.
The more the merrier as there is nothing more certain to breed lazy and entitled pollies than a bunch of safe seats all won by the usual major party suspects.