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Thursday, 2 May 2013

Comments on the Centre for Cival Society linkedIn thread

Hi there,
I have been following the very interesting and exciting discussions on the LinkedIn forum "The Heart and Soul of Australia", and thought they were worth recording this blog as well, as they mirror many of my own values, perceptions, opinions and conclusions. 
I recommend that you join the gourp if you like what you see!
to which the followign comment was made by:
Laurie V VaughanDefinitely worth the effort.- The adage "we get the politicians we deserve" has been true for 2000 years.
The party system is an infinite series of compromises unless a really strong Chifley or Menzies type takes the reins.
Love or hate him Hawke took charge and got a few things done. As did Howard.! Politicians strong enough to manage the compromises. Ms Gillard is making the effort, I think she is tough! The national campaign to unseat her ,currently unrolling ,ia a classic demonstration of the manipulation of the National Press. The Herald sun's campaign is blatant. the Daily Screamer has been headlining anti labour (Read Gillard ) headlines now for weeks.
Seems the balanced journalistic approach has evaporated.
We are left to wonder why.!
Has anybody wondered why the next election has a referendum attached asking about marriage ??? and just incidentely "PLEASE VOTE YES AS WELL TO AMEND THE LEGALISATION OF A THIRD TIER OF GOVERNMENT" the real reason for the referendum!!!.
Already defeated in 2 previous referendums 75 and 86. NO NO NO!!!
How would you like a fully legal set of new laws ,taxes and charges supplemented again!!!
How many times will they try get more control than already in place. Local CEO s are already some of the highest paid local Government executives $400-600K PA.                                         
and my reply, as follows:
Hi Teresa and Laurie
your comments strike a nerve with me too. Laurie's comment that the political system is an "infinite series of compromises" is true and pragmatic and necessary, but all too often comes unstuck for two main reasons (I think!):

firstly, yes, without clear and strong leadership (which needs some sort of obvious support as well, like a party) issues can be easily misdirected, because nobody knows how the issue should be managed or resolved or negotiated away; and

secondly, issues get misdirected because even with strong leadership to defend them, without a clear and strong sense of purpose, how does a politician know what the issue’s value to the community is, or why it is important to be resolved? This sense of purpose is what I think many of our politician’s might be missing…(Teresa's "genuine persons" suggestion), eg are they representing us or a party or indeed maybe just themselves?...specially with the rise of career politicians whom have had no real experience in the real world – amazing politicians, adept at political manoeuvring but could they be out of touch with ordinary Australians...I don’t know many people where I live who earn over $150,000, let alone $100,000 or even over $75,000….

My local state and fed reps were ‘parachuted in’ as the saying goes, with various amounts of ridiculous ‘family history’ supposedly justifying their ability to understand the local region (which I don’t really care about), and yes – the local community did vote them in, so we get the government we deserve, but did the local community feel like they had a genuine choice? And who parachuted in these people in the first place? The party machines….to win power, not to represent the local community….
Ivan McKay

Monday, 29 April 2013

Update April 2013

what a busy end to 2012 and an even busier start to 2013!

7 months between blogs is a long time, even if it is only me reading them :)!

I wrapped up 2012 with the inaugural "Politics in the Pub" event in November, with over 70 people crammed into the delightful Cantina Tapas bar in Merimbula to hear the hon. Dr Mike Kelly and Dr Matthew Nott and Infigen representative duke it out over renewable energy issues for the local region. A very interesting and lively debate! Thanks to Jo Thorpe for moderating and doing her journo thing and of course to Liam O'Duibhir for organising all the tech stuff and people so that the event went smoothly and was streamed live to the net!

Following PITP work started almost immediately on the 2013 Seachange Start Up Camp Merimbula, which was bigger and better than the inaugural 2012 event! We had over 20 participants this time around, an opening ceremony hosted by Mike Kelly, a fashion show and the launch of a new online fashion store owned and managed by a local 19 year old entrepreneur, plus lots of visitors from Canberra and Sydney as well as the locals getting their innovation and entrepreneurial groove on, and of course Australia's very first start up bus, the Entrepreneuars Seachange Bus all the way from Sydney! Everyone was a winner, but the trophy went to a start up idea now called VoxVoxVox, which created a phone application platform for audio to be hosted and added for interesting places to visit!

As well as all this my twins turned 5, the NSW government turned 2 yers old, a federal election was called and in the midst of all this my wife Alicia went through cancer treatment. Luckily for us she has come out the other end as strong as ever and determined to make the best of things. All good news from the doctors too!

Only 8 months to go! phew

I am also starting to become involved in a new political movement, Centre for a Civil Society, which is a back to grass roots movement for poltical representation and engagement, as well as planning the 2nd Politics in the Pub. Plus, 2013 is the year to finish the renovations on my house! Well, at least to lock up...