For those of you lucky enough to have a 'Not Happy John' sticker on your car, just add the word 'Still' above the 'Not' on the sign.
Better still if you have a brightly coloured or iridescent marker.
It's just a small way of continuing the fight but it all counts, as we suffer another three years under the Howard style of banana democracy. It will serve as a constant reminder to others who see it in carparks everywhere that you saw the light in 2004 (and earlier but they won't necessarily know that!). Time will move inevitably on, and as the Howard banana democracy sells our children's futures (as they inevitably will), your car sign will be a beacon to light the darkest hour!
I am going to take a break from political activism for a bit but will get stuck into it again. As Hugh Mackay said if Labor wants to get back in again in 2007 they have to start their campaign from today onwards. And so will we. We need to become 'average voters' and tailor our campaign. Issues like truth in government, compassion, looking after the more deprived etc do not resonate with them.
What I have started doing is to compile my very own database of likeminded people I meet. My latest on my list is my dentist! That way we can call upon a bigger group to help out. We started our own grassroots campaign here in Lindsay a few weeks ago but there were only 5 of us. We leafletted on The Truth about Interest Rates and the Economy. There was a slight swing against the Libs but not enough!
But all is not lost if Kerry wins next month so fingers crossed!
After Saturday night, my wife and I have had a change of heart. It is clear that we have been swimming against the tide, and it is exhausting, so we have decided to stop worrying and learn to love the Liberal party. To do anything else, it seems, would be un-Australian.
My wife is to quit her job at the Wilderness Society trying to save Tasmania
So many emails of despondency, but so many more of 'Right! What can I do?'
I've been an activist for fifteen years. It started in forests in NSW, and though the grassroots campaign against the NSW forestry commission was hugely successful, I had to face off the limitations of the movement, which was largely 'hippy' or whatever. (Caveat: the experience gave me an enormous respect for some of these 'hippies').
Then I went to the city, and was forced to face the even huger limitations of what I've come to call the anachronistic Left, who seemed to always occupy the centre of activist space.
What I'm getting at is I have never before seen the apparent beginnings of a movement like I am witnessing now. This is the activist movement I have always dreamed about - real people, from the middle, with everyday values of decency, and who do not have an ideology for a brain.
At the same time there is an incredible cross-fertilisation of views where such wasn't happening. The politi
Any chance of listing the promises made by Howard and then noting the action/nonaction in keeping/breaking them?
We need to monitor this, and his lies, so that we can readily discuss Howard's shortcomings out in the community.
Congratulations on the work you have all been doing. Hope you, in particular, Margo can recharge the batteries over the next few weeks.
Margo, I said in an earlier review that you were singing to the choir. I didn't realise what a small choir it was. I fear that we now have nowhere to go.
If Mr Howard gets control of the Senate, it will be the end of any effective opposition to this government.
I feel like emigrating.
Hamish: I truly hope not too many people emigrate because we have a lot of work to do yet.
You're right, especially about the Senate. But democracy is not dead yet, and when the chips are down, well, Ozzies don't give up.
As is now apparent to all, we have failed in our aim to dislodge the Howard Government, both in terms of dislodging the Liberal Party and in terms of dislodging John Howard from Bennelong. More seriously, it seems that Howard will control the Senate, either outright or with the help of Family First. This is, to those of us who mourn the loss of our previous acceptance of diversity and difference, a nightmare scenario.
We now have to accept that certain past issues are now dead issues, politically. The voters of Australia have had their chance to have their say against actions in Iraq, against actions against refugees in the past, and against some other issues. They decided that either they agreed with those actions, or simply did not care. If, as seems likely, there is another Bush-led aggressive war in the next few years, the blood will be on the hands of those supporting Liberal this time, but as far as the Iraq war is concerned, while Howard may some day face war crimes charges,
The further assault on our democracy has started, just a day after the election, as anyone who has read the news can see.
It is particularly highlighted and recognised in some of the more 'intelligent' postings to Margo's article 'New era dawns for an Australia in Howard's image'.
It's interesting that our 'Prime' Minister, has entered into an alliance with Family First, who seem to be totally at the opposite end of the spectrum to his policies. Oh don't the wedgies hurt when your not prepared for one, Family First?
I'm glad I'm always 'commando', relying on supporting garments I have found, leads to lazy muscle tissue.
It surely was a landmark election in Australia's history, but I guess this government won it and now they can 'OWN' it for the next 3 years.
Watch out for the big global curves coming which will alter the scope of things. All those hip pocket voters are losers anyway: America
Wrong lot got elected.
Seems that peoples' trust is highly dependent on their perception of the economy and what's in it for them. 'Abstract' matters such as defending our democracy, freedom of the press, doing the right thing by those who are less advantaged, etc, etc count for very little these days.
More concretely, I can't wait to get even more involved in fighting back. It's the only way I can lift my depression! There I feel better just at the thought of it. I might have some IT skills to contribute.
Hamish: Good onya David. That's the only way to get through the post-ele
Hiya Margo and Hamish and the NHJ crew, it's a bummer of a day today but we're not going away. Lots of work to be done. Whatever you decide to do with the evolution of NHJ I want in. I'd really like to help now that the election has been decided.
If it's a Move On kinda thing then even more so.
It's always darkest before dawn.
Two reasons for this posting:
1) Tim Blair says there hasn't been a new posting all week!
There may still be some gay, lesbian, transgender voters out there prepared to give their precious votes to the Coalition or the Democrats.
People who do this should be well aware that both these parties are giving their preferences to the Family First Party, a rabidly right-wing christian fundamentalist group whose aims, together with John Howard and others, are to ensure that people who belong to sexual minorities in our communities are marginalised, and, where possible, pushed back in to their closets and hard-won rights removed from them.
Is this what you want??
Remember that John Howard and his supporters are aiming to turn this country away from some of its democratic freedoms, so that eventually we will discover that we won't even have the right
Tomorrow is D-Day.
As we ready our national hearts and souls and minds to exercise the privilege of democratic Citizenship, this majestic Human franchise, it's impossible not to look around at the country and be inspired. So many great Australians, famous and obscure, have embraced what feels to me like a renewed sense of civic seriousness over the course of this campaign. New leaders are appearing; grass-roots movements are sprouting; people of great principle and courage and selflessness are stepping up to have a go at helping to re-define what it will mean to be Australian in the coming years. There's a tremendous energy building in the Polity, you feel; one driven by the simple desire of the powerless many to re-assert some corrective tempering check on the powerful few; to take control of our individual and collective destinies again, truly 'for all of us'. And it's been splendid; delightful; a great additional privilege to have been able to watch just one small part of this rebirth up close, via t
[Hamish: I emailed Mary and asked her to submit this under 'Corrections etc' 8-10-04] I assumed that Australia's forests belonged to the whole country, that they weren't there for the rapine of wood companies?