Tuesday, 3 August 2010

Politics. Swedish Fish. Sia.

Okay so I'm sorry about yesterday's fail-of-a-blog post. It MAY OR MAY NOT HAVE* had something to do with the wine I decided to treat myself to last night. I was just like "You know what? If I don't feel like blogging about this I'm just not gonna." Then I realised I had nothing else to say and it was 2 in the morning.

Tonight my indulgence is a bag of Swedish Fish I brought back with me from the States. Incidentally, if you love me a lot and want to get into my good books, sending me a few 14 OZ bags of Swedish Fish is a pretty surefire way to do so. I just love those little red bastards.

So I said I would blog about the upcoming election. I probably shouldn't dwell on it for too long in blog-form, considering I'm probably going to almost-exclusively dedicate my videos to it in the upcoming weeks. I know it's not the best material for my foreign viewers but what can I say? Campaign trails are just so rich in content. Plus, I'm a political junkie and I just can't help myself.

(I'll make it up to you in October though. Roboctober is coming. You heard it here first.)

The thing about this upcoming election is that I'm not feeling very represented by the two major parties. The Liberal Party (which I always have to explain is actually the conservative party - look up classical liberalism) is refusing to put a price on carbon and is generally ignoring climate change. They have also committed to bringing back the Pacific Solution to our supposed "boat people problem". That is, rather then processing asylum seekers on the Australian mainland, we would send them to East Timor, Papua New Guinea or Nauru - thus exempting Australia of the obligation to accomodate them if they turn out to be legitimate refugees.

Normally this sort of situation would make voting easy. I could just vote for Labor - and in 2007 that's just what I did for those very same reasons. Problem is Labor has drifted to the political right on these issues. Instead of committing to a climate change policy, Labor has decided to defer the decision to a 'citizens assembly' in a process that could take years. Additionally, Labor is once again flirting with the Pacific Solution even though they abandoned it under the leadership of Kevin Rudd.

So the question is, who do I vote for now?! In Australia voting is compulsory, so I've got to show up to a polling booth on the 21st of August whether I like it or not. That's why I think I'm going to vote for the Greens, even though I wouldn't normally send my vote that far to the left. Right now they're the only party that even remotely represents my values.

When I made this decision I thought I was largely on my own. Although the church I attend is far from homogenous on issues of politics and theology I had the feeling I was going to do something out of the ordinary for that community. Also, my friends at work are all wilfully politically naïve and would never dream of voting anything other than Labor or Liberal. However, after speaking with people from church about the election I found that almost all my friends had also decided to vote Green for one reason or another. Mostly it was disgust over the way Julia Gillard seized the Labor leadership but care for the environment was also a large factor.

So now when people ask me how this election is going to turn out I say "I don't know, it's going to be a close one; I think the real winners are going to be the Greens. They're going to see their best year yet."

I guess it's only a matter of time to see if I'm right about this.

In other news, I went to YouTube just before writing this post so I could listen to Sia's song, You've Changed and put it at the end of this entry, like Adam does with his. (You should read his blog, by the way - he's doing BEDA as well). Turns out halfway through the video there's an annotation that says "Can't get enough of this track? Sia's giving it to you FREE at bit.ly/FreeSiaTrack".

So yeah, there's some free music for you if you want it. Sia is lovely. She's also Australian and so fills me with the rare feeling of national pride.

This blog post has been sufficient. I'll see you tomorrow! I don't know what I'll talk about. We'll soon find out!




  1. No need to apologize, please keep posting/updating about the elections. That's what the internet is for, no? We learn something about another country, and yes, I'm a political junkie too, even if it is about other countries.

    And, Sia is AWEEEESOMEEEE!!

    Hope you are having a great week!

  2. I always feel like I'm more knowledgeable about Australian politics than American politics after I listen to you. Which is bad because I'm actually related to a moderately important politician... But oh well. Thanks for keeping me informed!

    And the idea of Roboctober is ridiculously exciting. Just so you know. (Yes, I will be playing the part of fan guilt-tripping you into keeping your promise when you realize how crazy October is going to be.)

  3. Last election I voted Democrats, but I can't even do that this year because there are only four options in my (our?) electorate. In any case, it's probably the least important election of all time; both parties seem to know who's going to win so it's like they're not even trying. It's all just so incredibly boring.

    Anyway, you know the whole the whole thing is a joke when the best party to vote for is the Greens.

  4. I'm so glad that I narrowly missed out on this election. If there's ever been an election that I've wanted to sit out on it would be this one. At least since I've understood a little about politics.

    I probably would have ended up voting for the Greens or drawing a picture of a donkey.

  5. What are Swedish Fish Rohan?? And you could always just leave your ballot paper blank when you put in the box... or write something amusing to entertain the people counting :)