Older voters point out the flaws in our democratic process

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With one week of pre-polling behind us and an election just two weeks away, YourLifeChoices asked older voters for their views on pre-polling and compulsory voting in the Friday Flash Poll: Would you still vote if you had the choice? Here’s what they had to say.

Seventy-one per cent agree with pre-polling, 21 per cent don’t, and seven per cent are unsure
More than half (52 per cent) have or will vote early in this year’s federal election. As to why …

“I have voted early, in accordance with the rules, as I will not be able to on 18 May. Regardless, why do people vote early? Possibly because nothing will change their mind and nothing in the campaign will. Or, perhaps, they like the convenience. Sure the parties and pollies dislike it, but woe betide any pollies who want to change the system. Imagine upsetting almost 50 per cent of voters. In a terrible campaign like this one, with many below-par candidates, lack of vision, no coherent plan for the country, dirt units dragging up scandals from years ago – no wonder people want to vote and get it over with,” wrote Ted.

“Queues at polling stations on election day have become disgustingly long in recent elections. That is unacceptable when voting is compulsory and encourages people to pre-poll without a legitimate reason,” wrote IndyLoops.

76 per cent agree with compulsory voting, 24 per cent do not, and nine in 10 (90 per cent) would still vote even if they didn’t have to
“I believe it is the greatest thing about the Australian voting system … everyone gets to say who they want and there is no excuse for people to say they are dissatisfied with their local politician … It would be terrible if we ended up like the US or Britain… we at least get what we deserve through our own actions,” wrote Aileen Goodwin.

“Perhaps if voting was not compulsory, the political parties would work harder to get and keep my interest in their policies,” wrote Huskie.

“While I favour compulsory voting, I think there is a strong case against. Do you really want voters that don’t care or don’t understand the issues voting to party lines or donkey voting?” wrote Farside.

69 per cent have made up their minds long before election day, while three in 10 (31 per cent) consider themselves swinging voters up until hitting the polls
“I think we should be voting on a party’s ability to govern and general principles and the quality of their politicians, all of which are evident well before the election. So pre-polling is fine,” wrote Keithb.

Four in 10 (39 per cent) feel that because they are forced to vote, they will merely choose the best of a bad lot
More than half (55 per cent) express confidence in their candidate. Six per cent are unsure.

“As regards voting for the ‘best of a bad lot’, I recall our history teacher who was a staunch Labor voter in an electorate that was 98 per cent Country Party being asked which the best party was to vote for. His answer remains with me to this very day. We were told to vote for the candidate who we think will do the best for us personally, regardless of party affiliation, and not be swayed by the overall result.

“By this criteria, it gets down to a local contest where things like climate change, electric cars, coal mines and sea levels become meaningless for those living through prolonged droughts. If a candidate can promise to sort out a local problem, and we can believe that they can, what is happening with house prices in the city is white noise,” wrote Old Man.

Older voters still have faith, although it is waning …
Almost half of all respondents (48 per cent) still believe in Australia’s democratic system, but 44 per cent say they that while they still believe in the system, they are losing faith. Only eight per cent expressed outright distrust for democracy.

Seven in 10 (69 per cent) say that voting should remain compulsory
But more than a quarter (27 per cent) think it should be voluntary and three per cent are unsure.

“Many of the problems in the US are caused by their lack of compulsory voting. I would hate to see us go the same way! One of the cornerstones of our system is that we all have to vote and dropping that requirement would lead to the awful scenario of politicians hassling people, trying to get them to come out and vote. For goodness sake, don’t advocate for voluntary voting! It would be a disaster!” wrote Infinityoz.

“A democratic system expects that all citizens should participate by demonstrating their views through voting. It makes parties work harder to present their policies to all, not just a target audience of rusted-on voters. Preferential voting, though, is highly questionable simply because a voter’s choice has every chance of being co-opted to another party,” wrote Crowcrag.

“I do think everyone should vote, but I also think we should be allowed to only vote for candidates we agree with – not be forced to number every box,” wrote Triss.

“Women fought long and hard for me to get the vote and I would be denigrating their hard work by not voting,” wrote Ardnher.

“People fought hard for the right to vote, why give it up?” wrote Misty.

While many support compulsory voting, others remain sceptical and some even suggest that voting is not compulsory under the current system.

“Compulsory voting is itself undemocratic. We do have at least the option to protest by casting an informal vote, which unfortunately not many people are aware of,” wrote Franky.

“It is not compulsory to vote, it is compulsory to be on the electoral role and have your name crossed off the list … what happens next is up to you,” wrote Ted Wards.

“One can make the conscientious decision not to vote. However, I think that is a poor attitude. We should cherish having a democracy and being able to vote and hope all people do and make considered choices,” wrote Rod63.

“The main reason that the US has a lousy government is very similar to our own – vast amounts of tied or vested interest cash pumped into political parties with strings attached. Anyone who has lived in the US knows the political power of the vested interests and lobbyists, the NRA, no gun control and tens of thousands of deaths annually; the oil and mining industries, no climate control. Australia proves that uncontrolled political donations corrupt, the US proves that they corrupt absolutely. If you think compulsory voting ensures good democracy, ask the people of North Korea, Egypt, Libya, Mexico, Brazil, Greece and Argentina how it works out for them?” wrote Cosmo.

Pre-polling is fine, but voters want a time limit set
Three quarters (75 per cent) of all respondents believe there should be a time limit placed on pre-polling, with 40 per cent saying pre-polling should begin one week prior to an election, 29 per cent saying two weeks prior and 15 per cent saying three weeks. Only 17 per cent said there should be no such limit.

Pre-polling and compulsory voting not the issue
“The biggest problem we have is preferential voting. I know we can end up with more people not voting for the winner, but people will have thought more about who they vote for. It would also rid major parties giving preferences to minor parties, promising to adopt some of their ridiculous programs,” wrote Luddite.

“Does anybody find it ironic that we are compelled to vote or vote ‘informally’, a euphemism for not entering a vote or spoiling the ballot paper, yet our politicians have the right to abstain in parliamentary debate. Why is that privilege not extended to the electorate? If we must continue with the current system, how about an ‘abstain’ box on the ballot sheet. Maybe it’s a crackpot idea but at least the politicians would gain an understanding of the percentage of the electorate who didn’t like any of them,” wrote Notoverthehill.

“The problem is that voters are uninformed. My view is that every candidate should be given by the Government free reasonable space, and compelled to, record their own personal policies, with supported reference to verifiable reasons, in local media before the early voting period. A low limit should be placed on media advertisements to prevent money controlling information. Compulsory optional preferential voting is essential to allow voters free choice and register disapproval of party control preventing proper candidate representation of their constituents,” wrote Eddie.

“Compulsory voting is the method by which the winning party can claim it has a mandate. It was designed by the parties for the parties – not the voters. It does not guarantee good representatives or good government. Similarly with preferences. The saving grace of the system is that one does not have to vote for any of the candidates if none are up to the mark, simply have our name crossed off at the polling station. The fairest and most accurate indicator of support for a candidate is ‘first past the post’, with no preference deals. We may still end up with a bunch of donkeys, but at least we will know it hasn’t been elected by mathematical trickery,” wrote BillF2.

“Preferential voting should be abolished and first past the post wins. Those small minority parties that you have to preference, some you never have heard about, how can you tick any of boxes when you cannot understand their policies? Some are way out of this planet. They will never be able to govern in own right and WE have to tick one of those on our ballot paper, otherwise our vote will be informal!” wrote Haveachat.

While Australia’s system of democracy will always have its critics, compulsory voting and the convenience of pre-polling ensures that all Australians have a say in which party is elected to govern. As one member, Mick, writes: “If you don’t vote, then celebrate what you get! You deserve it.”

Do you feel that preferential voting is a problem? Do you monitor all parties’ campaigns until election day. Or have you already made up your mind who will get your vote?

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Written by Leon Della Bosca

Leon Della Bosca is a voracious reader who loves words. You'll often find him spending time in galleries, writing, designing, painting, drawing, or photographing and documenting street art. He has a publishing and graphic design background and loves movies and music, but then, who doesn’t?

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86 Comments

Total Comments: 86
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    In a system where preferences are allowed, the idea of ” democracy” is diluted. Without fully understanding how it works and where your vote could actually go, there is potential for some candidates to be favoured over others.

    Thats why it should be abolished along with corruption laden donations.

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      That’s a big part of it Julian but the (not) free Press also has a lot to answer for. Running well chosen political propaganda to get LNP governments re-elected is anything but democracy. Trying to eliminate the ABC is also not democracy. Then neither is donations (=bribes) to political parties, both sides.

      I don’t know about other (genuine) posters on this website but I do value democracy and freedom but I can see the right side of politics slowly but surely chipping away at the bricks of our democratic system. A bit like the lobster in the pot: raise the temperature gradually and people will not feel the noose tightening around their necks.

      I live in hope!

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      Interestingly, this was on the ABC this morning in the segment where they are answering questions posed by voters. It was explained how important preferential system is which was an eye opener for sure. Some awful stuff would have gotten through parliament and examples were used of the time period when Abbott was PM. So, in short, it is a good system and we are lucky to have it.

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      But need to weed out the problems….lie Fraser Anning being elected or Ricky Muir last time around.
      My problem is actually not so much with the above as with the ability of the LNP to have right wing Independents elected who then throw in lots with an LNP party. Palmer is in that boat and so might Zali Steggle.

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      Of course, Mick, one needs to be mindful of each number. Palmer is pitiful; he often did not even turn up to parliament and when he did he was photographed sleeping at least once. He also has thrown millions at this election but has failed to pay his employees. Fraser Anning is dreadful but surely most people realise that this time! And so on and so forth.

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      So basically what I glean from the comments to Julian’s post is that we value democracy, as long as it excludes the people we don’t like.

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      Yes World Prophet agree with The labor Green coalition and you are fine disagree and you are not entitled to a say.

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      Rubbish Returned Serviceman, you could say the same thing about the CP, PH Nats and Liberal Coalition.

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    I have trouble understanding the clamour against preferential voting. Say there are three candidates in your electorate: one Liberal, one Labor and one Greens. After the votes are counted the Liberal gets 10,000, the Labor candidate gets 8,000 and the Green gets 3,500. Are those who favour first past the post saying that the 10,000 who voted for the Liberal should get their votes respected while the 11,500 who voted for a progressive candidate are not worthy of having their choice acknowledged? The Greens voters can select either Labor or Liberal to get their vote if the Green is not second on first count. Preferences allow everyone to rank the order of how they view the policies of the candidates on the ballot paper. It does not deprive people of their right to chose the policies that they prefer.
    I suspect that people who want first past the post are objecting to the Senate election where the multitude of minor to nonsensical parties confuse the issue.

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      Most voters don’t understand preferential voting & just follow a “How to Vote” card like blind sheep.

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      I made a comment on this above and it is a good system.
      LNP preferencing Palmer is not good, however, and voters need to be very careful to think for themselves. I did not realise LNP has put Palmer second. I assumed it was further down so that is woeful and hope people are wary.
      I did 12 below the line for the senate which means you choose individuals and the first six are the important ones.

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      Paddington, the LNP preferencing decisions are fine if you are a LNP voter. They have publicly said Palmer’s views are “closer” and One Nation is “more aligned” to their own views.

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      Farside, like I said, woeful!

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      In your example Batara, all votes were respected and choices acknowledged. The problem I have with preferential voting is that the clear winner of the first round now has to be subjected to further tinkering with votes because he/she didn’t get more than 50% of total votes. What rubbish is that. All votes are of equal value and should be counted once only and the best candidate with more votes than the second or third placed etc. should be elected because they won. No one else had more votes, end of story. Why is 50% the magic number, why not 60 or 40, that would be just as meaningless to me and many others judging by some of the posts. Fannying around with preferences is ridiculous as is filling in multiple boxes representing people who most voters have never heard and placing them in some sort of imagined order of rank. All I want is one box to tick .

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      Ozirules, you’ve hit it on the head. I agree 100% . The one with the most votes , wins ! simple. So Batara, Liberals got 10K, Labour 8K, and greens 3.5 K votes. Libs won, and the other two didn’t, that is simple adjudicating.

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      It appears that Paddington has a problem with democracy. In a democracy, Paddington, everyone has the right to vote for who they like. Your view appears to be that the current system is a good system, but preferencing of parties you don’t approve of by parties you don’t approve of is considered ‘woeful’. I do get where you are coming from, but find it a bit teenagery.

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      Yes SFR, a lot of people just want to get their vote over and done with and grab a How to Vote Card on the way without even knowing who they are voting for, not everyone is as fixated or educated on politics as people commenting here.

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    I have trouble understanding the clamour against preferential voting. Say there are three candidates in your electorate: one Liberal, one Labor and one Greens. After the votes are counted the Liberal gets 10,000, the Labor candidate gets 8,000 and the Green gets 3,500. Are those who favour first past the post saying that the 10,000 who voted for the Liberal should get their votes respected while the 11,500 who voted for a progressive candidate are not worthy of having their choice acknowledged? The Greens voters can select either Labor or Liberal to get their vote if the Green is not second on first count. Preferences allow everyone to rank the order of how they view the policies of the candidates on the ballot paper. It does not deprive people of their right to chose the policies that they prefer.
    I suspect that people who want first past the post are objecting to the Senate election where the multitude of minor to nonsensical parties confuse the issue.

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      And how do you account for Clive Palmer’s votes? He spent $60 of his own m oney in the full knowledge that he would not be elected. Then he turned around and presented Morrison’s men with preferences.
      Clive Palmer does not throw money away and there’s been a deal done. Will Morrison repay Palmer in cash plus some or will he legislate for the benefit of Palmer? There’s dirt here and we’ll find out once its too late to undo.
      How does your position go on this Batara?

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      Mick, are you arguing for first past the post? If this was the case Hanson would have been elected in 1998 with 36% of primary votes and lost out after the Libs, ALP and Greens preferenced each other giving Blair to the Libs.

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      First past the post is not a bad idea as the MAJORITY of voters get to have their choice ratified. If candidates do not work out its up to THE ELECTORATE to change that rather than self interest politicians. They should have no part in the electoral process lest it be tainted.

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      Mick, regarding your comment at 12:45pm. If you look at the simple example I gave where the Liberal would get elected with 10,000 votes first past the post you will see that the MAJORITY of voters are not having their choice ratified. The MAJORITY has voted for Labor and Greens, but the minority of voters who went for the Lib would get their way.

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      Actually NO. The majority voted for a party. If you are not comfortable with that then you put up issues for election rather than political parties.
      I’m not exactly against the current system if the pollies ironed out the abuse of it.

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    Isn’t that what this election is all about, voting for the candidate you favour the most?.

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      For that matter isn’t that what all elections are about?.

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      I had to fill in all names for the ballot to be valid, had to vote for people I absolutely did not want. That is wrong about preferential voting. Why not allow one, two or three names only and leave the others blank?

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      Common sense Cowboy Jim. I believe the Electoral Commission accepted that first time the tablecloth was aired. Not sure about this time around though and as you said why not as after the first half a dozen the rest are confetti anyway.

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      Well you put the very worst last. Not hard really! P for Pauline and P for Palmer at the end. If there is a racist party then they go way down too.

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      fair point Cowboy but for preferential voting to work there would need to be a minimum number of votes submitted, I am guessing three or four would suffice. We have already seen partial completion in the senate election with choosing up to 12 candidates from the ever-increasing number of parties and candidates.

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      Misty, there will always be a candidate or two who is unlikely to be elected. In most electoral divisions either Labor or Liberal will be elected. In a few electorates a National or a Green or (heavens forbid) a One Nation candidate could be elected, but normally a member of one of the two major parties will win. By extension of your thoughts those candidates who are unlikely to be elected should not be allowed to stand. Sure we can vote for the candidate we most favour, but if there are three or more candidates there would be an order of preference after the one we most favour. That is what preferential voting is all about – giving voters an opportunity to have their first and second choice respected. It also fosters democracy by facilitating opportunities for small parties and independents to have a go.

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      Misty, there will always be a candidate or two who is unlikely to be elected. In most electoral divisions either Labor or Liberal will be elected. In a few electorates a National or a Green or (heavens forbid) a One Nation candidate could be elected, but normally a member of one of the two major parties will win. By extension of your thoughts those candidates who are unlikely to be elected should not be allowed to stand. Sure we can vote for the candidate we most favour, but if there are three or more candidates there would be an order of preference after the one we most favour. That is what preferential voting is all about – giving voters an opportunity to have their first and second choice respected. It also fosters democracy by facilitating opportunities for small parties and independents to have a go.

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      Look up the meaning of democracy Batara.
      God help us if ruling parties ever get to choose who is able to stand. That’s the opposite of democracy, a dictatorship, and they’ve already tried it on.

  5. 0
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    If you are going to have compulsory voting, it is only reasonable to make it as convenient as possible by having pre-polling, end of story.

    It is far better to judge a political party by their performance when they are in power, than by a whole lot of garbage on what they are gunna doo, spoken in a pre election speech.

    My main complaint about the political parties is that they have a hidden agenda about the values they are representing.

    The labor party is no longer a workers party protecting wages and conditions they have become obsessed with changing the social order of things… gay lesbian rights, feminism, constitutional aboriginal status, that is more important than aboriginal health. Refugees “rights” of coming in and wandering down the streets like this was a third world country. Dodgy interpretations of what equality means.

    The greens have become an extremist group also big on social marxism, but trampling over the rights of anybody who wants to use coal for any purpose or eat meat.

    They have completely forgotten about transport emissions, that produce about 20% of greenhouse gasses.

    As for the Liberals they seem fairly much a mixed bunch, also with a hidden agenda, but I would prefer to return to a world of conservative values than continue the way we are going.

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      Well Charlie if you vote the Coalition back in that is exactly what you will get, to use your words, “continue the way we are going”.

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      The Greens are not extremist nor Marxist!
      Coal is bad and we have reached an important time to get serious about preserving the environment.
      Ha ha the Greens are not vegetarians I can assure you.
      Far right are far far worse than the Greens.
      Conservative can also be an ugly word. Moderate maybe not too bad but extremism is more likely in that plane than to the left of the middle.
      Fear mongering aimed at the Greens who are only trying to save our world is ludicrous.
      If there is the slightest chance global warming is real then we actually have no choice.

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      You are sounding a bit like your description of the Greens Charlie.

      “It is far better to judge a political party by their performance when they are in power.” The writing has been on the wall for the current government for 6 years despite it lying as if on steroids. No secret. So are going to vote LNP again?

      Your description of Labor and Greens is a bit unfair though. Sure Labor has moved away from wages only but then if they had not they’d be labelled a one issue party. As one of the 2 major parties Labor needs to have policies on everything. The other side demands it and will shoot them down if they don’t have these.

      The Greens? I understand….and mad woman Hanson-Young does a lot to drag the party down. Having said that I heard Di Natalie last week and he was pretty spot on about the political problems and class war which needs to change. Climate change is a no brainer. Then there was the class war stealing wages from average people and all the rorts employers are using with no end in sight. Then there’s the tax system where the top end are plundering the rest of the nation and it never ends. I could go on but you get the point. The only thing Di Natalie said which hit a raw nerve was about bringing people into the nation. That we need like a hole in the head.

      Nobody is going to tell you anything about coal and meat. When renewables become a no brainer then you’ll want those. Meat? Who cares about a handful of activists who are promoted in the media. We can ignore these people and change who we vote for if a political party decides to implement such a ridiculous policy. The ballot box is there for a reason. Use it to kick put rats. So are going to vote LNP again??????

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      Ah Yes, Mr Di Natalie, he who wants to tax all large businesses into oblivion, legislate for preferential treatment for all women in finance, housing and the workplace, bring in 100% renewable energy by 2030 (if you think your electricity bills are high now, wait 11 years then see where they will be), and a host of equally ludicrous far left socialist policies.

      Mr Di Natalie who wants to enshrine equality of LGTBIQ+ and root out anti-semitsm (has he been listening to the pro-Palestinian/anti Israeli rhetoric from those in his own party?). Equality for all, except some will be far more equal than others. Good luck if you are a successful male – you will be rendered destitute!

      And Paddington thinks he is not extreme left? Mr Di Natalie is way left of Marx, Castro, and Stalin with his ‘progressive’ view of the future!

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      KSS – your post is as usual an extreme right wing post determined by the almighty dollar.
      I have never voted for Greens. What I was saying is much of what I heard him say last week was on the money no matter how much your wealthy colleagues would be shuddering in their boots.
      I don’t consider the rich giving themselves tax breaks, abusing the superannuation system to launder income, using trusts to pay a much lower rate of tax or offshore tax shelters as legitimate. Di Natalie has this right and requiring high income earners to pay a fair PERCENTAGE of tax is fair.
      I don’t consider governments entering into a business arrangement with the coal, irrigators, banking industries or the wealthy to be fair. Its corruption at best.
      I don’t consider being in cahoots with media barons and being er-elected on the back of propaganda democracy.

      Tell me about The Greens KSS. Better still lets stack then up against the current government. I thought so.
      The Greens may be way left and I certainly do not agree with some of their ideology but they are not puppets! The current government is.

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      Woo, KSS, you are extreme!
      Of course LGTBIQ should be equal. Everyone should be equal even people who espouse rubbish. Greens are left of Labor for sure but not to the point of communism.
      Far right is worse than left minded people.
      Hate is far right for example. Racism comes from the far right. Anti Muslim comes from the far right. Anti any religion is far right when it is to the point of terrorism or inciting hatred.

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      “Of course LGTBIQ should be equal. Everyone should be equal even people who espouse rubbish.”

      Paddington, that’s ridiculous! Not everybody is equal. What is desirable is equal OPPORTUNITY. Forcing equality of outcome is simply discrimination.

      “Anti Muslim comes from the far right.”

      No – it comes from any sane person who has read the Quran and is aware of Islam’s continuously violent 1,400-year history.

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      All irrelevant for me. I am tired of seeing the country become a welfare state and the place run by minority groups.. Age pension obviously and rightly excluded.

      The government in power is not always to blame for representatives who swing the balance of power.. I intend to vote for the only bit of conservatism there is left . I don’t care what anybody thinks.

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    Mick, you’re right on the money there. We have got too many lousy “journalists” in Australia. I hardly ever watch the Sky News channel anymore. I’ve even tried to remove Sky News from my Telstra Foxtel subscription. Journalists should just report the news accurately. I’m afraid I would never take part in a demo to protect the jobs of journalists – most of them have sold out the Australian people.

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      Thanks for the kudos Rosscoe.
      The biggest issue I have with right wing journalists is they report what their boss wants rather than the news. This is why I frequently call for a POLITICAL ANTI PROPAGANDA legislation. That would put a hold on paid propaganda. Not holding my breath though.

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      Journalism is under the pump everywhere because of economics; simply there are not enough people willing to pay for the so called Fifth Estate following the disruption to newspapers and broadcasters by the internet. The 24×7 news cycle has only exacerbated the problem.

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      Farside, The problem was made worse when the L.N.P. Government rewarded Murdoch for his support by removing the restriction on owning a TV station and newspaper in the same capital city, This action resulted in over 70% of the media being controlled by one organization. Most Queensland papers are all published by News Corporation. Brisbane Courier mail, Townsville Bulliten, Gold Coast Bulletin , Cairns Post. this may explain why the print media is no longer supported by the public.

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      80 plus with any luck when Murdoch dies his sons will sell up and buy Casinos or drive it broke. If anyone lowers themselves to read his crappy newspapers they have already made up their minds who they are voting for. I find the best use for the Australian is for lighting my wood heater, I get them from the recycling bin. The Telegraph is best for soaking up oil spills and the local paper goes well in the compost bin. They are all very unpopular in the dunny!

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      Farside – you are being kind. The Murdoch empire traded propaganda to get Abbott elected for money in the bank. That’s how big business works. There’s no free ride.
      The real issue is one of democracy and the perversion of the word once you get politicians selling off the nation’s silverware. They forget they are custodians rather than owners.

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    Mick, you’re right on the money there. We have got too many lousy “journalists” in Australia. I hardly ever watch the Sky News channel anymore. I’ve even tried to remove Sky News from my Telstra Foxtel subscription. Journalists should just report the news accurately. I’m afraid I would never take part in a demo to protect the jobs of journalists – most of them have sold out the Australian people.

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    I have not decided who I will place first on my ballot paper but I know I will be placing the LNP last on it. I like preferential voting because you can number candidates in the order you would prefer to see them elected.

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    You only need to see the enormous double page spreads and the weekend newspapers and the incessant TV ads paid for by Clive Palmer to know that our politics are corrupted by tied money going into political advertising. It is now very clear that democracy itself is for sale in this country, it can be bought and none of the main political parties except maybe the Greens want to stop it. What’s more we are compelled to vote for commercialised politics. Is this democracy? The people will not be the winners from this election whoever wins. If the 40% who don’t know and don’t care are compelled to vote, they will vote for the party that can afford to shout the loudest. Is that what you want? What chance for the independents. Now we see the LNP cozying up to the extremists, the “No Principals” with One Nation and Palmer with the Lazies. I hope you all get what you pay for!

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      They are only corrupted if you take these ads on board and vote for Mr Palmer, just like if you see the ads that say “This is the Bill Australia can’t afford” or “Scott Morrison has done plenty – ripped money out of health and education and given $17b to the banks) and vote for Mr Shorten or Mr Morrison. And incidentally you can only vote for any of them if you live in their electorates!

      That’s all they are; advertising; much like dish washing liquids and chewing gum! And I don’t buy dishwashing liquid according to ad either………

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      Spot on Viking. Most voters are lambs to the slaughter: feed ’em poo, only tell ’em what you want ’em to know and keep ’em in the dark.

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      KSS but are you one of the 40%? I think not. 40% under this system (not mine maybe yours) is enough to get any party into power with preferences so do you want a mob compromised by an extremist party like One Nation or the totally unpredictable self interested Palmer running the country?

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    You vote for the candidate who you trust the most to do a good job. Not necessarily for the party. Nor do you have to follow how to vote cards,- This election is a farce.

    You vote for the candidate bests represents you and you do not have to follow how to vote cards. This elections is farce with so many candidates having to quit. They should have been selected more carefully. Their names will still appear on the ballot papers and people can still choose to vote for them. If they get enough votes they can still be elected as independents. Already voted as postal vote is vote is for me. Liberal went last

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