Offering a uniquely Australian perspective on the US Presidential election

A Chip Off The Old Block

A Chip Off The Old Block

Friday 25 March, 2016
Felicity Farthardly, Friday Mash’s Director of Research Services, gains the views of this week’s focus group on the hotly-debated issue ‘Are the independents in the Senate good for Australian democracy?’
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FridayMash Focus Group

“Now Cyril” said Felicity “what’s your view?”

“I think they’re a pack of recidivist ratbags” responded Cyril “It’s like having the Senate taken over by a local council”

“Well I think they’re wonderful” said Charlene “because they’re all bolshies just like me. And the only way that thousands of us bolshie Australians are going to get our voice heard democratically in Canberra is through rorting the electoral system because we’re never going to get enough votes”

“The question I would like you to seriously consider” said Felicity “is whether it is in the interests of our parliamentary democracy to have government legislation continually blocked by a group of independents representing minority interests”

“It’s an absolute tossers’ tea party” responded Godfrey “If only Jacqui, the Brick With Eyes and Ricky knew the damage they were doing they might be able to sit back and enjoy what an exciting time it is to be living in Australia under Malcolm”

“Jacqui’s my hero” said Charlene

“Do you find it at all surprising?” asked Felicity “that the independent Senators are opposing changes to the voting system that would result in them being dumped?”

“Not at all” exclaimed Grace “because they’ve got a track record of consistently opposing legislation that would benefit the country”

“Let’s be fair” said Alf “if a politician doesn’t vote for him or herself how the hell can they expect anyone else to vote for them even though in the vast majority of cases we’d all be far better off if they voted for someone else”

“Can you think of any worthwhile achievement” asked Felicity “by an independent in the Senate?”

“Absolutely” responded Charlene “two of them told Clive to go and get stuffed and my brother who has been on the dole for ten years has been inspired by Ricky to look upon the Senate as a career opportunity”

“It seems to me” said Felicity ‘this all comes down to a question of whether minority groups should be represented in Parliament without the imperative of commanding sufficient votes”

“Dead right” said Charlene “democracy will not prevail in Australia until there are guaranteed seats in Parliament for anarchists like me”

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About this Series
No politician who is serious about acting in Australia’s best interests would dream of taking a key decision before first checking with Felicity Farthardly who is widely recognised as one of the country’s leading experts on the public’s political needs and attitudes. She’s the researcher who can always be relied on to ask the right questions provided she’s been briefed beforehand on the right answers

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