Political parties and strategies (Dr Russell Darroch)
Dear All NHJ People,
I do not profess to have an answer to this problem ... but I think we need a serious discussion amongst ourselves about the following issues:
a) In the time available it is unlikely that a viable alternative party can be built in time to do signficant things for the next election, which we *must* win.
b) Part of how Howard got in was due to the fractured voting caused by minor parties and the quirks of the preferences system.
c) The Coalition parties are highly(!) UNLIKELY to reform themselves given the current leaders in both camps - or under the likely replacements once Howard cuts and runs.
d) We are unlikely to form an alternative free press in this country in time to take effect, sadly. The pathetic behaviour of all major media (even the SMH wimped out and didn't back Latham) gives no ground for optimism. NHJ!(HA): Watch this space Russell
So, there seems to be very little hope for us (l)iberals of any flavour to get satisfaction or change in the solution of either a new party or reforming existing Liberal or National parties.
Strategically that leaves Latham and the ALP as our best bet for a change of government given the absolute certainty that either the Coalition or the ALP will win government; no other party can come even remotely close. Part of why Howard has won this time is precisely because those who can't abide him have split their vote across the minor parties - doubly sad.
I can readily appreciate that not everyone here wants to join the ALP nor support it. But that is precisely why I think we need to start the strategic and tactical discussion.
[For the record I belong to no political party and have always voted as an independent on the basis of policies and ethical standards/behaviour. I will also add that for the first time in my 33 years in Australia I'm seriously considering joining the ALP because there is no viable alternative - the Democrats have blown apart, the Greens, much as I like them, will never win government and right now, I believe, we MUST change the government at the next election and that comes back to the ALP (which clearly has some work to do).]
In the end I talking raw pragmatism here...