1 May 2022

Making your vote count for climate change and integrity

| Peter Tait
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A hand puts a vote in a ballot box

How do you make your vote count? Photo: File.

Two strong themes have arisen for this election. First, contribute to good government because our future depends on it. Secondly, this is the climate change and political integrity election.

The two are in fact related. Without integrity measures, action on climate change, biodiversity, sustainable agriculture and more can’t happen. These measures include a strong federal Integrity Commission, reform of donation law, truth in political advertising, limits on election spending, lobbyist registers, open diaries and a host of similar means to curb the undue corporate sector influence.

Good government has integrity, is responsive, enables citizens to participate and is accountable.

To get good government we need MPs in parliament who will act in the best interests of their constituents.

This happens when they support integrity measures, commit to act on the climate emergency and protect ecosystem processes.

The first trick in getting the correct MPs into parliament is voting for those who have demonstrated a commitment to integrity and climate action. This might be a sitting MP or another candidate. The approach for us, the voters, is to interview them to see who’s best for the job.

READ ALSO COVID no excuse not to vote in this federal election

Questions a voter may ask candidates include – if elected:

  • How will you help me participate in decisions about issues that affect my electorate?
  • How will you let me know what you’re doing for me in parliament?

And if you want your representative to be accountable to your community, ask that they commit to vote for:

  • Real-time disclosure of donations more than $1000
  • Political donations caps
  • Election spending caps
  • Strengthened enforcement and compliance through the Australian Electoral Commission and a National Integrity Commission
  • Legislation to require truth in political advertising.

For sitting members, ask yourself how they went as a representative over the past three years. Find out what they’ve done, how they’ve voted, how they’ve spent, and lots more through Political Gadgets.

READ ALSO Seselja confirms $15 million Vikings Park commitment

The second trick for voters who want to preference a candidate not from a major party is to use all your preferences. Videos on the Canberra Alliance for Participatory Democracy Election 2022 website show how the preference system works, and how preference votes are counted.

This is important for House of Representatives and Senate candidates. The take-home message is to use the whole range of preferences available. For the Senate, this applies for above- and below-the-line voting.

Carefully preference who you want most to least so you get the candidate you want working on political integrity and climate action, and to contribute to good government for the public good.

Peter Tait is convener for the Canberra Alliance for Participatory Democracy, a community organisation focussed on empowering Canberrans to engage in owning and planning for our common future.

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Voting for football player to run the government isn’t the brightest idea . The government in Canberra needs a massive clean out . Ask yourself why has Canberra rate and cost of living become the most expensive in the country.

I’m a bit gob-smacked by negative and stupid comments. the article seemed rather practical to me! I’ve voted for years in the ACT and felt unrepresented and powerless to make my vote count in the ACT. I think Cathy McGowan and the Voices of Indi are the start of a movement to take back power for genuine people in the community. I find it obscene that a safe Liberal or Labor seat is starved of resources simply because it is a safe seat.

I think that David Pocock and also to a lesser extent Kim Rubenstein are a breath of fresh air in ACT politics.

Zed Seselja has been our representative in the senate for ten years what has he ever done for Canberra in that time. Zed represents a narrow religious and extreme right wing viewpoint that is completely unrepresentative of the bulk of Canberrans. This in a small way is symbolic of what is wrong with politics and government in Australia.

We need leadership and vision in government in Australia because without it we are rapidly becoming a banana republic and irrelevant to the outside world, especially in the Pacific region and in Asia.

You’re gong to vote for someone who promises much, but will be tainted by the large taxpayer funded trough they will stick their noses in and never pull out

Capital Retro6:58 pm 02 May 22

Unless the “independents” are elected and hold the balance of power they will be useless.

And they would have to vote as a block so they are no longer independent.

They will still get paid the same and most of them are just looking for a job anyhow. Self-interest is a very powerful emotion.

Oh dear, CapitalRetro, still persisiting with your “don’t vote for this one or that one …” rhetoric. Jacquie Lambie has achieved quite a lot for Tasmania as a non-aligned Senator through her status as a cross bencher. Nobody is listening to your “no longer independent” garbage. They are not aligned with a party voting bloc and are free to choose with whom they vote – that makes them independent. Your Zed still remains beholding unto the Liberal party and desperate to hang on to his ministry and Katie hopes to get one so will follow Labor edict.

Capital Retro8:03 am 03 May 22

As you confirmed, Zed and Katie are committed to their respective parties and that has served us well over the years.

The “independents” are an unknown quantity so if you want to support them that’s your choice but don’t complain when they stop us having children until climate change is stopped.

@CapitalRetro “Zed and Katie are committed to their respective parties and that has served us well over the years” True – if you like having absolutely no voice for Canberrans in the Senate, because their votes are irrelevant. Neither LNP or Labor Senators in the ACT have had any bargaining power, to achieve anything, with the govt of the day as they cancel each other out. All we ever get are the grants doled out to every state – which the prevailing Senator claims as “their work”. As previously stated, ministries are the driver for Zed and Katie.
“independents are an unknown quantity” – rather that than a Senator who says he will support the majoirty will and then abstains … that’s not unknown, that’s lying! Besides if we don’t like what the independents do, we can kick them out in 3 years.
“… but don’t complain when they stop us having children until climate change is stopped …” Wow – that’s ludicrous even by your standards. So what’s your next gambit against independents – they will force VAD legislation through ACT LA with a rider to get rid of all silly old fools in the ACT. (Hmmm maybe you do have cause for concern).

@CapitalRetro Yes good article: ” … his wife Emma said they have spoken about the subject at length and have decided they would rather save the planet than start a family.'” Then “‘It is a decision you can’t make lightly, whether or not you want to have kids,’ Pocock said” i.e. it’s a personal decision they took for themselves. Where does he say that on his website, he would impose his choice on others? How dare you insinuate anything beyond that. There are no words to describe the despicable lows to which you will descend to further your conservative cause. Why aren’t you also reporting on Zed’s plans to overturn free access to abortion in the ACT? The reason – because it’s not true despite the fact that as a Catholic he is personally opposed to abortion.

@CapitalRetro Pt 2 “Mrs Pocock said the ‘world is not in a good place’ so they would rather try to make a better future for other people’s children.” I think it’s you who should wake up and perhaps read the whole article not just the headline!

Capital Retro12:04 pm 03 May 22

So, just because you were unaware of what he said you conduct a royal commission to prove I am wrong?

Just accept what people say is usually what they do.

Capital Retro12:56 pm 03 May 22

Mrs Pocock isn’t the candidate.

@CapitalRetro A royal commission? Gee you have an overinflated opinion of yourself – that nobody shares. Proving you are wrong is easy when you supply the evidence. You provided the link to an article – unfortunately for you, I read it and found your outlandish claim to be totally fallacious.
I generally expect (rather than accept) that what people say is what they do. Unless they are politicans like Zed, who commit to accepting a majority view on an issue and then when they don’t get the majority view they want they go missing.
Nevertheless, where does Pocock or any independent say they will “… stop us having children until climate change is stopped”? Have you got any factual information or do you just want to produce more unsubstantiated headlines and hope people won’t read the article?

As for Mrs Pocock, Capital Retro. I included her quote because it shows that she and her husband made the personal decision jointly for reasons important to them. No political motivation, despite you wanting to use it politically, as the article was published in December 2019 – long before Pocock announced he was running for the Senate.

Independents usually have a leaning toward one of the majors or the other.

To truly represent the wishes of the community, implies citizens’ referendums on issues. Correct me if I’m wrong, but I’m not aware of any of the Independent candidates proposing Citizens’ Referendums.

Imagine being an Independent in the ACT Assembly, with the ALP/Green alliance holding 16 of the 25 votes. An Independent can promise the world, but unless they hold the balance of power, they can’t deliver.

@Kenbehrens You do know this is a federal election don’t you? The voting makeup in the ACT LA is irrelevant. The cross benches currently hold the balance of power in the Senate. Independents, such as Senator Jacque Lambie, have been able to deliver for Tasmania because her vote counts and she is not beholden to either party. So two independent ACT Senators would have far more opportunity to deliver for Canberrans, because like Senator Lambie, their votes would be important to whichever party is in government.

Capital Retro8:06 pm 03 May 22

I wasn’t aware that he had changed his mind. Can you give me a link?

I never thought I’d ever say this but we finally agree on something – as I too am not aware that Pocock and his wife have changed their mind on their personal choice not to have children. I have just checked his website, and he hasn’t posted a policy that will “stop us having children until climate change is stopped.” – no change of mind their either. So thank you for admitting that this policy you attributed to independents was a fallacious fabrication of your over active imagination. Happy we can now put that falsehood to bed – let’s just put it down to a febrile health event you suffered and move on.

Enjoy your massive tax increases and blind Freddie will see David as a massive failure

If Greens and teal greens think they can stop climate change what are are their policies on the movement of the magnetic pole, tectonic plates/continental drift and the orbit of the planet?

Or making their billionaire boss richer. Just follow that money post election, if they get in

“Others [terrorists] are engaging even in an eco-type of terrorism whereby they can alter the climate, set off earthquakes, volcanoes
remotely through the use of electromagnetic waves… So there are plenty of ingenious minds
out there that are at work funding ways in which they can wreak terror upon other nations…It’s real, and that’s the reason why we have to intensify our [counterterrorism) efforts.”

– Secretary of Defense William Cohen at an April 1997 counterterrorism conference sponsored by former Senator Sam Nun. Quoted from DoD News Briefing, Secretary of Defense
William S. Cohen Q&A at the Conference on Terrorism,
Weapons of Mass Destruction, and US, Strategy, University of
Georgia, Athens, Apr. 28, 1997.

“Climate change” is a hoax, the technology to alter the climate exists and has existed for decades. The elite chose not to allow this technology into the bubble “clown” world.

Quick, Oscar Mike, make ready the tin foil hats for distribution!

After reading the article, I’ve had a look at the website and to me, everything appears very idealistic and utopian. Dare I say, somewhat akin to “Animal Farm”.

Capital Retro2:29 pm 01 May 22

And who are your preferences going to, Peter?

And if you want your representative to be accountable to your community, ask that they commit to vote for:
One more – After I get voted in and sit in the Chairman’s lounge, waiting for my flight to Italy for a study tour into Garbage disposal, I’ll think to myself, ‘I wonder what the poor people are doing.’

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