Many of us believe that democracy delivers our collective wisdom. The ascendancy of Donald Trump to the Presidency of the United States has jolted that faith. Trump’s victory epitomises the challenge of the popular vote.
We come from different political backgrounds and views but we share one strong central belief — our political system appears to be broken. It’s time to fix it and we hope this is the year that the fix starts. We need to try some bold ideas. Tinkering with the edges won’t repair a toxic system...Continue reading
Australia has just conducted “probably our boldest electoral experiment since the military conscription plebiscites of 1916 and 1917”, in the words of Liberal Senator Dean Smith, the author of the private member’s bill that will now carry the result of the marriage plebiscite into law. “At a time when public faith in political institutions is...Continue reading
This piece is a reflection by Iain Walker, Executive Director of Australia’s newDemocracy Foundation and a guest at a recent PACE member gathering. The message I share is well-worn and I can roll into reformist evangelism when first woken if need be. I’ve delivered it to senators and skeptical TV audiences with a smile. Yet...Continue reading
Recently, Matt Ryan, former Deputy-Chief of Staff to South Australian Premier Jay Weatherill, spoke at an event in Spain organised by the Regional Government of Gipuzkoa, a region in the Basque Country in northern Spain. The government has established an agenda entitled “Etorkizuna Eraikiz” or “Building the Future” which explicitly links the future prosperity of...Continue reading
September 12, 2017 The arrival of 16 million same-sex Marriage Law Survey forms in post boxes from today is more than just a historic moment in the campaign for marriage equality. It is also the first time in 18 years that Australian voters have been given the chance to “vote” directly on an issue — rather...
I entered politics with an engineer’s mindset — to assess the challenges, then build things to solve those problems. I went into it knowing politics can be bruising, and I was a willing participant in making sure I offered my arguments with the full measure of force and theatre to go along with the underlying...Continue reading
Meet four men who have prospered hugely under our current political system, yet want to dramatically overhaul it for the greater good. On the cover of Oz magazine’s February 1964 edition three young men – one dressed, incongruously, in a suit – stand at the Tom Bass public sculpture in Sydney’s Hunter Street, pissing into...Continue reading
Geelong will have the council structure it wants with the passage of City of Greater Geelong Amendment Bill 2017. The Legislative Council passed the Bill last night, bringing about the new structure for the City of Greater Geelong following the Council’s dismissal in April 2016. In an Australian first, the Geelong Citizen’s Jury process put...Continue reading
Premier Jay Weatherill has officially walked away from one of the major policy hallmarks of his term in Government, pronouncing the nuclear waste dump “dead” and vowing he will not revisit it if he wins another term in office. The position appears a significant rhetorical shift from his stance last November, when he pledged to...Continue reading