Friday, 20 March 2009

Voters won't be misled with the Greens - Isaacs

CairnsBlog is happy to offer all candidates an opportunity to write in their own words.

Sarah Isaacs, Greens Candidate for Barron River, says that there's the usual last minute tussle between Labor and the conservatives over who should win.

Some voters, who would like to vote Green, are scared that doing so might damage the prospects of one or other of the 'major' political parties. For example, Labor-leaning voters may be concerned a vote for the Greens might hand Government to the LNP - or vice versa.

Wherever a Greens candidate is running, voters have the chance to vote Greens 1 - then allocate a second preference if they wish. In Barron River, as long as a Green 1 vote is followed by numbering a box '2' - for Labor or the LNP - the vote cannot be wasted.

If the Greens are not elected (and soon Greens candidates at all levels of government will get in, if we follow the global trend) - it will help decide who gets elected and pass on in full strength to the second party of their choice.

Crucially, it will also demonstrate the extent of Greens support and the voter's wish for a real change in political direction.

I hope voters won't be misled by last minute scare campaigns. A Greens 1 vote is not a waste. The people of FNQ deserve more choice than Labor and the LNP. They have more choice. I hope they choose to exercise it.

6 comments:

Monty said...

You and the Greens have my number 1 vote but I won't be voting 2 for the Borg - I've watched too much Star Trek to do that, or for Labor - they need to rediscover Labor Party values which seem to have disappeared in recent years.

Lisa said...

if you look at the reason the lnp talked about monamona at all, you will find that it was sarah isaacs of the greens who stood up for the monamona community...the others were just scrambling for the preferences, vote 1 green

Sean Purcell said...

My main interests in this election are to see if Queensland can break 200 years of parliamentary history in Australia by electing a woman as a head of government, and also to make sure that Barron River, the seat I live in, returns the most progressive and capable representative in the state. I have to say though that Sarah Isaacs, The Greens Party, has created an interest that I hadn’t anticipated.

I have known Steve Wettenhall for a long time and he is a friend of mine. He is a quality Local Member, and anyone who says that Steve hasn't done a fantastic job for Barron River in his first elected term is either hopelessly partisan (which they are entitled to be), or they just haven't been paying attention. Steve is highly intelligent, he’s honest, he’s an environmentalist and he has the courage of his convictions. He comes from an excellent social value base, he’s starting to exert influence within the ALP and he is extremely hard working. In my view, over the last 30 months he has done all that could be asked of him, and he well deserves a second term in Barron River.

Wendy Richardson has been less known to me, and I admit to not being well disposed towards her, because of her support for Lawrence Springborg and the National Party. Even so, I’ve read Wendy's political stuff, and over the last two weeks I’ve watched her on her feet for some hours in public debate, and I’ve found her to be something of an open and not very complicated book. I want a bit of candour from my local representative and, without wanting to be too critical, for me Wendy is a walking tangle of disorganized and shallow policy guff that, like an octopus in a bottle, adjusts automatically to the shape of any listener, and never stops shifting. Apart from Wendy’s concerning policy on uranium, her climate change skepticism, her intended roll back of red tape and regulation (think coastal fisheries, farm run-off, wild rivers, environmental management, commercial development etc), Wendy and the NLP have many other policies, they just won’t say what they are. No policy candour at all, and for me that means no personal or political integrity, at all. Add the Lawrence Springborg factor into that, with 12,000 jobs to be cut from the Queensland public sector, and I find it very difficult to support Wendy.

The big surprise for me this election though has been Sarah Isaacs, whom I prejudicially speculated was going to be a quiet, if not sleeping candidate for The Greens. Instead, Sarah has brought her own style to the contest, and it’s impressive. Anyone who has heard Sarah speak knows that her only interest is in good humanistic and environmental outcomes for the planet, and she carries that message with a surprisingly strong and personal flair. She’s articulate, she knows what her vision is and she seems to be well down the road to some sort of praxis.

Sarah has also personally endorsed Steve Wettenhall for The Greens' second preferences in this election, and she is asking people who want to Vote 1 The Greens in Barron River to make sure that they also Vote 2 Australian Labor Party. The Greens How to Vote card explaining this will be available at election booths.

The main reasons for The Greens decision are obvious: If the National Liberal Party is given a three year term in government, they could do more damage to the Queensland environment than could be retrieved by all the Greens, and all the ALP and all the conservation groups working together for the next 20 years. ALP scare tactics? I’m not a member of the ALP, and I’m a Greens voter, but I’ll never forget the Borbidge Nat/Lib government of 1996-98.

Barron River is a fairly simple seat and I hope people will consider this for a moment before they vote. If the vast majority of Greens voters don’t make sure they direct their second preference to Steve Wettenhall, he will lose the seat. If that happens to good environmental candidates like Steve, it can happen all over the state, and we will get an NLP government.

So please, in Barron River, Vote 1 Sarah Isaacs - Greens, and also Vote 2 Steve Wettenhall - ALP.

John, Kuranda said...

Sorry Lisa - you are wrong with regards to your comments re monamona (sic). Wendy Richardson has had several meetings with Ngoonbi, Mona Mona Action Group and the Djabuguay Tribal Aboriginal Corporation over the past few months; both on the land tenure issue plus that of fair and just compensation and exclusion from the Forde Enquiry. Which is a hell of a lot longer since Sarah Isaacs has been the Green candidate.

The LNP committment to the Mona Mona peoples is far more than either Labor or the Greens has seen fit to support. A reversal of the inequitable cabinet decision that took away the land. A negotiated land tenure that suits the needs and aspiration of Mona Mona people. Working with the Mona Mona people on infrastucture and usage needs - including housing. Plus the REDRESS committment. As a community excluded from the Forde Enquiry this committment is not just for Mona Mona but for the other communities excluded as well.

To get that form of committment from a potential Government is not achieved in a "scrambling for the preferences". It is as a result of committment, equity, and respect between Mona Mona peoples and representatives of both local and Brisbane based LNP people.

Please also remember that Lawrence Springborg met with the Mona Mona representatives here in Cairns last week following up on a committment made several weeks previously. That meeting took place after the "miraculous" Labor backflip AND the Greens preference deal had been announced.

The LNP did not have to make this committment to Mona Mona for a preference deal; instead is IS the right and proper thing to do.

Finally, Lawrence Springborg has been quietly meeting with various representatives of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities both here in TFNQ and the rest of Queensland over many months. Reconcilliation can be defined in several ways - perhaps it is time that the Greens and Labor reconcile themselves to the fact that the LNP can and does support the aims and aspirations of Indigenous Australians; not just for preferences in Barron River but as a matter of social justice and social equity.

If you choose to support the Greens and truly want to see a just and bright future for Mona Mona (and that the Greens stated reason for preferences Labor) then the answer really is a no-brainer. Vote 1 Isaacs, Vote 2 Richardson; if you can't bring yourself to do this, then JUST VOTE 1, Isaacs.

Sean Purcell said...

"John, Kuranda" sounds to me like a Liberal National Party staffer.

John has the same problem with candour as Wendy Richardson and Lawrence Springborg: he has a real name, something that openly identifies him, but he won't tell us what it is.

Anyway, Anonymous John's blog speaks for itself: putting aside the smoke and mirrors, the LNP has agreed to meet and talk to the Mona Mona people about Mona Mona. Big deal.

Steve Wettenhall, on the other hand, actually did something real: he lobbied for a reversal of the Mona Mona land tenure decision, and he got it. No National Park.

Next step for Steve and the ALP, back to the 10 year drawing table and try to find agreement, not just with the Mona Mona people, but amongst themselves. And if John was a local, he would know that this last bit of agreement - amongst Mona Mona people themselves - has always been the hardest to reach. However, once again - and rightly so - Steve Wettenhall is going to keep trying.

So get a grip LNP: you carry the rich heritage of the worst reputation on Indigenous affairs in Australia. If you're going to overcome that, start with a bit of openness and honesty on indigenous policy.

I note that Wendy Richardson still hasn't corrected Bryan Law's complete misrepresentation of the LNP policy on Mona Moma elsewhere on this blog. Not a promising start for LNP candour on Indigenous affairs, is it?

John, Kuranda said...

Sean,
I have mentioned in other posts that yes I am a member of the LNP and that yes I am involved with the Barron River LNP campaign. Yes I am a local - would have thought the Kuranda in my tag kinda gave that away.

For the record I have a considerable history working with, and for, Indigenous people in the NT and here in FNQ as well at a national level. I know the pitfalls that exist with negotiations such as these and do not under estimate the processes involved.
Oh and by the way, I don't think that whilst in Caretaker mode Cabinet decisions can be reversed. So at the moment all Labor has really promised is to reverse the decision should it win today. Which the LNP has also promised to do and so much more.