While all of us here at the Dingoes are closely following the God-Emperor’s progress towards his apotheosis, we have our own election coming up on the 2nd of July. To help you Seppos work out how true-blue democracy is run in the greatest little country on Earth, I prepared this helpful guide.
Australia was first settled in 1788 as a penal colony of the Great British Empire. This was, in part, due to the disloyalty of liberals in [cough] other colonies. The First Fleet under Commodore Arthur Phillip landed at Port Jackson, Sydney Cove on the 26th of January (now Australia Day) and the hardy Anglo-Saxon spirit soon found the new Australians moving across the country.
Early government was autocratic, with governors running colonies with British laws and rights forming the basis of the legal system. By the late 1800s, Australia was overwhelmingly White British (90%) and native born (80%), and discussions on Federation commenced in 1890.
We cannot forget, however, that, in this country, we are separated only by imaginary lines, and that we are a people one in blood, race, religion, and aspirations. It is impossible for any man born in or belonging to one colony to pass to the other and to feel that he has gone to a foreign country. It is because of the intense closeness of the tie which unites us that we notice the line of Customs-houses along our borders, which remind us that we have created a difference where no difference need exist. The honourable gentleman seems to imply that there would always be the same separateness existing between the residents of the Australian Colonies as there may be between the residents of adjoining but differing nationalities. We have, however, to recollect that we have sprung from one stock and are one people, and whatever the barriers between us may be they are of our own creation. That which we have created we are surely strong enough to remove. - Alfred Deakin, in the Official Record of the Proceedings and Debates of the Australian Federation Conference, Melbourne 1890
Australia federated and held its first election in 1901.
The single most important policy in Australian history, the Immigration Restriction Act 1901 received Royal Assent in December of that year. This bill would become the White Australia Policy, introduced by the Protectionist Party Prime Minister Sir Edmund Barton.
Australia was a notably loyal colony, taking up the Imperial task in the First World War against the Turkroach under the inept leadership of then First Lord of the Admiralty Winston Churchill. The Gallipoli Campaign was pivotal to creating an Australian imaginary of mateship, self-sacrifice, and honour. We lost some 61,527 men in the war, or about 1.20% of our population.
As a consequence of the Balfour Declaration of 1926, Australia became a dominion of Britain, although we had no interest in formally altering our relationship until the Labor government of 1942.
The young nation, bloodied by the conflict, was comparatively fortunate during the Great Depression. While our export led economy was badly hurt in the initial shock, unlike other countries that embarked on Keynesian programmes, Australia employed far more orthodox tools under Prime Minister Joseph Lyons, at the advice of (((Otto Niemeyer))). The deflationary Premier’s Plan raised taxes, cut spending, and cut interest rates.
By the start of the Second World War, the unemployment rate was 11%, much lower than the United States’ 17.2%.
The one sticking point was the Labor Party government of Jack Lang in New South Wales. His preference was to renege on debt and embark on heavy fiscal stimulus. This, combined with the possibility of his staging a coup, led to the rise of the New Guard, a reactionary movement which became more fascist later on. It is estimated that the New Guard at its peak numbered 20,000 men, and were prepared to stage a counter-coup if the need arose.
Unfortunately, they were too Anglo and conservative to mount a serious challenge to the police, and the moment conflict happened, the police easily asserted their dominance. Their biggest propaganda victory came when Francis de Groot rode in full uniform at the opening of the Sydney Harbour Bridge (1932), and slashed the ribbon with his sword before Lang could open it. When the governor of New South Wales dismissed the Lang government, the New Guard collapsed.
It’s worth remembering that the Labor Party was strongly in favour of White Australia, and while Lang comes across badly in this episode, he would go on to describe the Immigration Restriction act as Australia’s Magna Carta in his book I Remember.
In 1934-5, the White Australia policy was tested by (((Egon Kirsch))), a Communist Jew who sought to spread anti-fascist sentiment. Having nearly passed the dictation test in several European languages, as the tester was entitled to stop the test prior to completion and start again, finally Scots Gaelic did it, and he was denied entry. This was overturned by the High Court, and is used as an example of the evil White Australia policy being used to deny access to an innocent, well-educated Jew. They always seem to omit that he was a Communist, for some reason.
The war saw a major realignment towards the United States, as we relied on them in the absence of the admittedly pre-occupied British.
The newly formed Liberal government of Sir Robert Menzies held a virtual monopoly on power in the post-war period. A successful referendum to amend the constitution consolidated control of welfare and the Income Tax Act of 1942 consolidated revenue raising and from this point on, the imbalance between state revenue and state spending would become a major issue.
Menzies’ government opened up immigration from across the White world, and Australia experienced significant population growth. The Labor party, which formed the opposition under Arthur Calwell, remained committed to White Australia. Indeed, in 1948, Calwell wrote ‘ I Stand By White Australia’, an article in the ARGUS newspaper advocating the return of non-White war refugees.
The ideal that this country, which was settled and developed by Europeans, should remain predominantly European was sponsored by our forefathers, and has had the unwavering support of all good Australians ever since... We take no unction unto ourselves for granting during the war sanctuary to thousands of people who normally would have been refused admission to Australia. It is only what any country with any compassion at all would have done. But we have a right to expect these people to honour their undertaking to return to their own countries at the conclusion of hostilities. - Arthur Calwell, I Stand By White Australia
It was the cuckservative Liberal government of Harold Holt which finally destroyed the White Australia policy, with the Migration Act of 1966 which opened up access to the very Asians the policy had been designed to prevent. The 1967 referendum saw Aborigines voted into the polity.
Arthur Calwell never became Prime Minister. Instead, his former deputy Gough Whitlam ended 23 years of Liberal rule in 1972, and put an end to racial selection by fiat, signing international agreements against discrimination and allowing non-Whites citizenship after just three years of residency.
He also introduced the Racial Discrimination Act 1975, which prevents Whites from engaging in in-group preference, and was later amended to bar speech which is ‘likely to offend, insult, humiliate or intimidate people of a certain race, colour or national or ethnic origin’.
The Whitlam government was unable to get its budget passed through the senate, triggering a major constitutional crisis. Sir Joh Bjelke-Peterson (the legendary Premier of Queensland who did nothing wrong) gave the whole thing a little push or two, and it ended with Whitlam’s dismissal by the governor-general. He then lost the election and control of both houses to the Liberal government of Malcolm Fraser, who did pretty much nothing to repeal and rewind the actions of the Whitlam government. Fraser in his senility would go on to campaign on behalf of the Greens Senator Sarah Hansen-Young, who is one of the most disgusting advocates against Australian interests and in favour of degeneracy. Her support for refugees was his stated reason.
Fraser’s government also introduced a round of Keynesianism which resulted in stagflation. This would have two impacts: Fraser would be the last Keynesian to lead the Liberal Party to victory, and Labor was forced into the strange position of being the market advocates.
Labor dominated the 1980s under the government of champion drinker Bob Hawke.
They liberalised the economy, and with his Treasurer Paul Keating, receive much of the credit for Australia’s economic growth. As Prime Minister, however, Keating was uninspiring, and would hold on in the 1993 election more as a consequence of his Liberal opponent's inability to articulate the Fightback! programme than his own brilliance.
The 1992 Mabo decision in the High Court settled once and for all the question of whether there was ‘native title’ over land as a consequence of Aboriginal inhabitation of the land, and sadly the reality that no one owned land in Australia prior to White settlement, and that any vestigial sovereignty was transferred to the Crown when Commodore Phillip arrived lost out. Australia’s judiciary voted against our nation without even being a Jewdiciary.
John Howard, who had generally been supportive of the agenda in his roles in the shadow cabinet, including a stint as opposition leader in the 80s, became Prime Minister in 1996. The defining action of his first term was the Port Arthur Massacre, which led to a gun grab which we know basically did nothing but is extremely popular among the ‘well it stands to reason’ crowd. The Nationals, the Coalition’s junior partner which represents regional areas supported the law, despite the regions being bitterly opposed to gun control then.
We also heard a new voice in Pauline Hanson. Elected as an independent, having been disendorsed by the Liberals for opposing extra welfare for Aboriginals, she rose to notoriety for opposing Asian immigration in her maiden speech to Parliament.
The Nationals were historically the largest party in Queensland, and were badly hurt in the 1998 state election as a consequence of the gun grab when Pauline’s One Nation Party first ran, losing five of their seats to them. They also took six seats from Labor, several of which Nationals target swing seats. One Nation eventually imploded due to splitting, personality differences, and the other predictable reasons a minor nationalist party that explodes onto the scene does. Pauline herself spent several months in jail over allegation of improper use of election funding pursued by Liberal Tony Abbott. The conviction was later quashed, and she was released.
Howard, however, survived the 1998 Federal election despite losing the popular vote, and persisted with a policy of middle-class welfare predominantly funded by the proceeds from the mining boom. In the 2001 election, the question of boat-people came to the fore, as asylum seekers were alleged to have thrown children overboard at a pivotal moment in the election Howard was looking likely to lose. Unfortunately, deciding ‘who comes to this country and the circumstances under which the come’, as Howard put it meant one thing: hundreds of thousands of legal immigrants from more places than ever, as long as they didn’t come on a boat.
Following the 2004 election, when Howard won control of both houses for the first time, Labor finally struck on a decisively unpopular policy. This was WorkChoices, an industrial relations reform package designed to hurt the unions and make hiring and firing workers easier. In many respects, it worked. After an initial flurry of firings, the number of dismissed employees decreased, as did the number of days lost to industrial action.
Labor nominated Kevin Rudd as their party leader, and on the back of the unpopularity of the reform and a potent campaign, won the 2007 election on the platform of being John Howard without WorkChoices.
Unfortunately for Labor, Rudd had a temper and a predisposition to both micro-management and bureaucratism.
His fiscal stimulus plan, coupling environment to spending, saw dodgy insulation installers enter the market and several people lost their lives. His only saving grace was the ineptitude of Malcolm (((Turnbull))), then opposition leader, who appealed to much the same constituency as Rudd.
Rudd was basically all show, and was a fan of feel-good declarations, including a series of wars and revolutions against social problems. His biggest spectacle was the apology to the ‘Stolen Generations’ near the start of his term.
Early on, Australians had decided that through a combination of education and interbreeding with Whites, Aborigines would become essentially White. They also decided that this was better than the rampant sexual violence, physical violence, and alcoholism that still plagues Aboriginal communities. In some respects, the policy was a success. Children who were removed from Aboriginal parents (simple ‘Aboriginality’ was essentially never the reason for removal) and raised by missions and so on have had dramatically better life outcomes than ones who still live as an ethnically and culturally Aboriginal way. Indeed, any Aboriginal in a position to complain about the ‘Stolen Generations’ is in that position as a consequence of the ‘Stolen Generations’. But that success came with a huge amount of very reasonable resentment, and Aboriginality now represents a major rent-seeking opportunity, regardless of whether the Aboriginal person in question is 100% Aboriginal or just Morrakiu-Black.
On December 1 2009, the Liberals chose Tony Abbott to lead them by a single vote. Things changed rapidly.
Abbott began seriously opposing Labor policy, starting with defeating the Emissions Trading Scheme (ETS), designed to create a fake market for carbon dioxide, and then the mining super-profits tax (MRRT). He hammered them on their dismantling of the Pacific Solution to people smuggling, which had led to a massive spike in illegal arrivals.
Rudd could do nothing, and soon, with the help of Bill Shorten, Julia Gillard became the first female Prime Minister in our history, ousting him in a party room vote. To unseat a first term Prime Minister like this was unprecedented.
In the 2010 election, Abbott brought the government to the cusp of defeat, levelling them at 72 seats a piece. But Gillard negotiated with the crossbench MPs, and became the first female Prime Minister elected in her own right thanks to the two rural independents, Rob Oakeshott and Tony Windsor, the Tasmanian independent Andrew Wilkie, and the Greens Adam Bandt. The remaining crossbench MP, Bob Katter, did not join with them.
During the election, both Gillard and her team repeated said there would be no carbon tax under her government, and when she introduced a carbon tax, Abbott did what he was best at: offence from opposition. By 2013, the deeply unpopular but legislatively prolific Gillard could do nothing, and faced a challenge by Rudd, who was helped by Bill Shorten.
The 2013 election was won convincingly by Tony Abbott, who campaigned on repealing the ‘offends and insults’ section of the Racial Discrimination Act 1975 (section 18c), repealing the carbon and mining taxes, and stopping the boats. Of those core policies, only the repeal of section 18c hasn’t been accomplished. Both Oakeshott and Windsor lost their seats to Nationals.
Labor held a two part vote for its party leader, with half of the votes being drawn by party members and the other half from the party room. Anthony Albanese won the popular vote, but lost when the parliamentary team voted for Bill Shorten.
Abbott’s biggest problem was being unable to deal with the media. When questioned, he would often fail to articulate a vision, or to defend a policy of his own. Instead of standing behind the decision to restore the knighthoods to the system of honours, he proved the general rule that he had no capacity to defend his decisions.
As he became less and less able to fight for his policies, he faced instability from within the party room.
(((Turnbull))) had never accepted being removed as opposition leader, and after constant undermining by his moderate faction and a false start, ran against Abbott with the help of the Deputy Leader of the Liberals, Julie Bishop. Despite the relatively robust approval ratings of Abbott, he lost by 10 votes, despite far better polling than (((Turnbull))) had as opposition leader. The Liberals bled a sizable number of hardworking and long-term supporters, and in return, gained the temporary allegiance of centre-left voters and new moderate members. In the all too familiar story, the base would prefer a significantly more right-wing party than manage to get preselected (win primary challenges).
Instead of calling a snap election to legitimise his coup while in the honeymoon period, he waited and attempted to govern in his own right. Over time, the people he had won over to the left realised that the pro-gay marriage republican moderate was still a member of the Liberals, and support began to drop. Eventually, he called the election for the 2nd of July.
The trigger was the government having the relatively minor piece of legislation to bring back the Australian Building and Construction Commission (ABCC) twice blocked in the senate, and is therefore a double dissolution in which all members are up for re-election. As of near the start of the long campaign, (((Turnbull)))’s approval ratings fell below some of Abbott's better results from around the time he was removed, and current polling has the parties virtually neck and neck.
The actual election has seemed to be reasonably typical, but characterised by the increasing de-legitimisation of the process by unlikeable candidates who quibble over the detail of basically the same policy while refraining from any sort of articulation of a new Weltanschauung. To editorialise for a moment, I find both party leaders unbearable to watch, and so I turned off the news when Abbott lost the top job and haven't followed this campaign as closely as I normally would.
The House of Representatives
The Reps is comprised of directly elected members in 150 seats around the country. Each state that existed at Federation is entitled to a minimum of 5 seats, which creates a discrepancy between mainland seats, which generally represent about 90,000 electors, and Tasmanian seats, which generally have fewer than 70,000 electors.
The Prime Minister, the head of government, sits in the House of Representatives, and the government members sit to the Speaker’s right. The Prime Minister has the role by commanding the majority of members. Alongside the Prime Minister sits the Deputy Prime Minister, the Treasurer, the Leader of the House, and the rest of his cabinet MPs, referred to as the front bench. The remaining members sit on the benches behind, and are referred to as the back bench.
The opposition sits to the Speaker’s left, and is comprised of the biggest party or group of parties not in government. Each role in the government is paired by a member of the opposition, such as the Opposition Leader, the Deputy Opposition Leader, the Shadow Treasurer, Manager of Opposition Business and so on.
Between the government and opposition sits the crossbench members, who are either independents or drawn from minor parties who sit with neither the government nor the opposition. Currently, there are five crossbench members, the Katter’s Australian Party Member for Kennedy Bob Katter, the Palmer United Party Member for Fairfax Clive Palmer, the Greens Member for Melbourne Adam Bandt, the Independent Member for Denison Andrew Wilkie, and the Independent Member for Indi Cathy McGowen.
In charge of proceedings is the Speaker of the House, normally drawn from the government’s members. His job is to call members to speak, prevent disorder, acknowledge guests, and manage the business that is before the House.
Voting is compulsory in Australia, although there is no one preventing you from spoiling your ballot, and thus voting informally. A vote is formal if you number the candidates in your seat from 1 to N, where N is the number of candidates running in your seat. You must number all of the boxes, regardless of whether or not you want your preferences to flow to another candidate.
When all votes in the seat have been counted, the first preferences are tallied. If no candidate has 50% of the votes, the candidate with the lowest first preference vote is eliminated, and the second preferences on their ballots are added to the totals of the surviving candidates. This continues until one candidate has 50% of the votes, and is declared the winner. This is called the Two Party Preferred (2PP) result.
Party volunteers hand out how-to-vote cards at polling places, which encourage their voters to preference certain parties. This means that it is rare for a minor party to win a seat.
The Senate is our Upper House, and is run on a similar system, with the President managing the running of the chamber, the government senators facing opposition senators, with a crossbench in the middle.
Each state has 12 senators, and each territory 2 senators for a total of 76. In a normal election at the end of a government’s term, half of the state senators face election, while both territory senators face election every time.
The election of the senate is significantly more difficult due to the number of candidates, but is now run on similar grounds to the House of Representatives. Previously, a vote was formal by voting one for a party group above the line, or numbering all of the boxes below the line (i.e. voting for every single candidate in order of preference). Parties would then decide where their above the line preferences flowed, usually to each of their six candidates in turn. Minor parties got wise to what they could do, and so negotiated preference deals that saw them work together to get a minor party senator elected, regardless of first preferences.
Under legislation introduced by the (((Turnbull))) government, which attempted to undermine this system getting crossbench senators elected, voters must number no less than 6 parties above the line, or 12 candidates below the line.
In order to be elected, a candidate needs a quota, equal to the number of formal votes, divided by the number of senators to be elected plus one, plus one additional vote, i.e. (votes/(N+1))+1. This number is calculated for each state, so the lower your population, the more influential your vote is.
If a candidate reaches a full quota on first preferences, he is elected. Generally, this will be at least one Coalition and one Labor senator. A quota is subtracted from that party's total votes, and then the order of parties is recalculated. If no party has a full quota, the lowest scoring party is redistributed according to the second preferences. This continues until one party has a full quota and is elected. Votes transferred from a candidate who has a full quota and is elected, but has excess votes that will not see him elected are transferred at a reduced rate of the excess votes divided by the total number of votes the candidate received. This is because it is impossible to know which votes actually elected a candidate, and which should flow according to preferences.
When there are no more vacancies, counting ends. If there are no more votes to count, and no party has enough votes to fill a quota, the candidate with the most votes wins the seat.
Here is the count from Victoria in 2013 under the old system, when Ricky Muir was elected 6th from just 0.51% of the first preference vote thanks to favourable preference flows.
As you can imagine, this has created a stronger crossbench in the senate than in the house. Typically, it includes a large number of Greens, and a few senators from minor right-wing parties. Currently, the crossbench has:
Greens – 10 Palmer United Party – 1 (a party founded as the ego trip of mining magnate Clive Palmer) Liberal Democratic Party (libertarians) – 1 Family First (Christian/free market) – 1 Australian Motoring Enthusiasts Party – 1 Jackie Lambie (elected as PUP) Glenn Lazarus (elected as PUP) Nick Xenophon (claims to be moderate, generally votes with the Greens) John Madigan (elected as Democratic Labour Party)
This is in addition to 33 Coalition and 25 Labor senators.
Between the Greens and Labor, it has been generally easier for the left to get legislation passed through the senate. The Gillard government, which was formed with the support of the House of Representatives crossbench, was a prolific legislator despite her lack of majority in either house. In contrast, the Coalition needs to get at least four minor party senators to vote with them to pass legislation, which is difficult at the best of times. Leyonhjelm, the Liberal Democrat, has repeatedly said that the Coalition managed the crossbench in an extremely poor, autocratic manner, especially early on.
Pauline Hanson is our best hope in Queensland, and even though she isn’t interested in the racial nationalism of her early years, she will be the people's voice against Muslim immigration. If you are a Queensland Dingo, she has to be your number one pick. Elsewhere, One Nation will definitely still be top two or three.
In other states, the Australian Liberty Alliance is generally the most likely anti-immigration party to win. Formed by a dislike of kebab and love of matzo in equal measure, this rabidly Zionist organisation is literally only any good because of kebab. They want to get out of the international agreement on refugees which is worth giving a preference to.
Australia First is running some senate candidates, and is easily the best party for nationalists. Anti-Zionist, anti-immigration, pro-White, the party leader Dr. Jim Saleam is running in Lindsay, and they have another candidate in Lalor. Unfortunately, the party is plagued by a chronic lack of professionalism, and it is almost certainly time for Saleam to step aside in favour of a male between the ages of 25-40 who is married with children, and no criminal record. His PhD on the far-right in Australia is definitely worth reading, but doesn’t seem like the man who will be able to propel the party forward.
Rise Up Australia was founded by a brown thing that washed up in our country and wants to pull up the draw-bridge behind him, mostly to stop Muslims. He still has to go back, but it's better than the alternative.
It is extremely likely that we will leave this election with a more divided senate than the one we have now. With the reduced number of votes needed to make a quota, minor parties are likely to do better than usual. This is especially true of the Nick Xenophon Team (NXT) in South Australia, which is likely to pick up several seats. It is also possible that they will win seats in the lower house, such as the division of Mayo where they are leading in the polls 52-48, along with the divisions of Grey and Barker. These are all currently Liberal seats, and strongly so.
It is unlikely that there will be many surprises. The homosexual preselected by the LNP in Kennedy to lose to Bob Katter, and Melbourne should be a Greens retain. The independents, Wilkie and McGowen, should also hold their seats. Palmer isn't re-contesting Fairfax, which means a free seat to the Liberals.
The Liberals deserve to lose this election, and they just might. (((Turnbull))) is everything wrong with people like Paul Ryan and David Cameron writ large, and repudiating everything he and his moderate faction think will be more beneficial to the country than Bill Shorten could possibly be damaging. Regardless, the people likely to lose seats are generally more moderate, and so a conservative swing in the Liberal partyroom is expected.
Queensland is looking like it will lose a number of LNP members (the Liberals and Nationals merged into a single party in Queensland, but sit in separate party rooms federally under the merger agreement). While conservative rural seats like Maranoa will certainly return Coalition members, more urban seats like Petrie, Dickson, Longman, and Brisbane are vulnerable. Few seats are serious targets for the Liberals, who command a sizeable majority of members from the state.
If you were to look at the 'Pendulum', you would probably get the impression that the Coalition was far closer to winning seats than Labor. However, between the 2010 and 2013 elections, the Coalition has reached most of the typical limits for what they can hope to achieve. Lilley, for example, isn't typically a 1.3% Labor marginal. That should revert to a more typical 3-4% margin.
So there will be a natural correction in favour of Labor. That already makes them competitive. Looking at polling, the Coalition has also been going backwards everywhere except South Australia, which has had a long term Labor state government which narrowly won re-election last time.
If we assume these as uniform state swings, that amounts to 12 of the 19 seats they need to win already. It's conceivable that they'll make bigger gains on top of that, especially in places like Tasmania where 3 of the 5 seats are Liberal, the state government is Liberal, and the people tend to be relatively left-leaning. I'd suggest that most of the seats that changed hands at the last election will be at least competitive this time.
A secondary consideration is just who will pick up lost seats. A number of Labor seats are more vulnerable than ever to Greens members, and as I said above, there are a bunch of Liberal seats that could go to the Nick Xenophon Team. We can't forget that a hung parliament is always a possibility, and I see Labor as more likely to be able to get confidence of the house in the situation where the crossbench is dominated by Greens and NXT.
If you have a look at results when you wake up on Saturday morning, you’ll have a pretty good idea of how we voted. The senate might not be declared for weeks, especially with all of the interesting candidates coming in the last few spots in each state. If you want to watch live, you’ll have to be up by 5-6am.
So that’s it. You’re now more qualified to talk about this election than most Aussies between the ages of 18-31. I hope that this helps you enter our magical world, gentle seppo, and that you enjoyed my attempt to condense the last 228 odd years as concisely and accurately as possible.