Crocodiles sinking the State budget, a secret child protection report, toxic foam in the Brisbane River, and delays in post-cyclone aid, dominated news last week in Queensland: http://ethicalconsultingservices.wordpress.com/2017/04/18/last-week-in-qld-170418/
Cyclone Debbie – cleaning up, counting the cost, waiting for flood peaks – continued news domination last week in Queensland, along with debate about the Adani mine, and Liberal-National Party/One Nation Party relations: http://ethicalconsultingservices.wordpress.com/2017/04/10/last-week-in-qld-170410/
Very few people will disagree that politics needs to be more representative of the community – if we were truly choosing candidates on merit we would see more women politicians, more indigenous Australians, more migrants and their descendants, and proportionately fewer middle-aged, heterosexual, anglo men.
After the 2015 Queensland State election, the Labor side of the Queensland Parliament is 37% women. Overall the Queensland Parliament is 28% women.
You can read the rest of this article at the Ethical Consulting Services blog, here.
The rest of this article is on the Ethical Consulting Services blog, here.
Labor supporters are in a good frame of mind coming into 2015 – particularly here in Queensland.
It’s because Labor just ousted a one-term conservative Government in Victoria, and the polls tell consistent stories: Labor has recovered its standing Federally and leads the coalition; Labor is increasingly competitive with the Liberal National Party in Queensland; Campbell Newman may well lose his own seat.
Believing those polls reflect future election results is a mistake.
Polls ask “If an election was held TODAY who would you vote for?” They DON’T ask “How will you vote at the end of a 30 day election campaign when the conservatives have outspent Labor five to one?” They don’t follow up by asking questions focussed on the policy frame that will be confected by the incumbents and the Murdoch media empire, and then re-testing how you’ll vote. They don’t test what happens to your vote after months of the Murdoch media empire reprising their role as the media arm of the Liberal National Party.
They also – mostly – offer no measure of how soft might be that support for Labor: how easily voters might return to the Liberal National Party.
There is no way that the polls accurately reflect optional preferential voting or the impact of Palmer United Party – because in those areas we don’t yet know what voters will be asked to do, and we don’t know how they will act.
They are also state-wide aggregates, and don’t reflect two important things: general variation in swings from seat to seat (e.g. regional differences) and the big swings that always occur after a massacre, of traditional voters returning to the fold, but only in traditional Labor seats: i.e., you can’t presume that the kind of swings you see apply in the seats Labor need to win, as they might well all be in the currently-held or easiest-to-win seats. A 20% swing in a seat requiring 2% to return to Labor’s fold, embedded in a broader poll, could easily make that poll appear as if there’s a swing across multiple seats sufficient to win several of them, but swinging voters could be concentrated in one seat, or very few.
Here’s the danger in believing the polls: thinking the election result is pretty much done and dusted: complacency within local Labor campaigns, overconfidence that it isn’t a terribly heavy slog between now and Election Day, and an unwarranted belief that the electorate are yet committed to rejecting the Newman Government and their local MPs.
But, notwithstanding, Happy New Year!
- Get them into good, active branches – the kind of Branches to which new members will want to go back
- Review the way we behave at meetings, so that new members are encouraged to be involved, not spoken to the wrong way, so their lack of experience in the ALP doesn’t marginalise them
- Identify and respect the experience that they bring into the Party
- Pre-plan – work up a list of possible activities for new members – get that list together before they arrive, so you can run it past them right away – but make sure the list reflects their interests and not just yours
- Offer them (suitable!) roles in the upcoming Federal campaign
- Be alert for training from which new members might benefit
- Be alert for Party functions, forums etc outside your immediate area, that might interest
- Be aware that what interests you isn’t the same as what interests new members, and if you pursue just your own interests you’ll alienate them quickly
- Be aware that one size doesn’t fit all – one (new) member’s interests, skills, political knowledge and availability won’t match those of the member sitting next to them
- Connect effectively with new members before the branch stackers and the branch strippers do
- Make sure new members are added to mailing lists and are invited to events and meetings
- Hand deliver the new, new member kit that is about to arrive
- Respect them
- Welcome them – genuinely: on their terms, not yours
- Empower them
- Involve them
Any other suggestions?
(Thanks very much to Mike Holliday for stimulating me to think about this issue!)