And so, just like that, in a single day there is a changing of the guard in Australian politics …or is there really any change? I am not so sure. One thing will emerge, the number of women representing Australian people’s interests (at least nominally) will have dramatically increased. And many of those voices will be enjoying the freedom of movement that independence from party influence can give. But independence can be bought of course, which is what politicking is all about. I have no high expectations that this round will be any different from the last.
Such was my own interest in this phenomena that I forgot it was voting day yesterday, until my daughter reminded me with only two hours left before polls closed. I could have stirred my bones to go out and have my name crossed off the list of voters but I would only have written some message about lack of democracy in the system on my voting papers, as I usually do, so my non-vote would in any case not be counted. It is a matter of personal integrity that I will not vote for anyone I do not believe represents my interests, and there has been no such offering in recent years.
I expect I will soon receive a $75 fine for neglecting my civic duty as a citizen by not entering a vote. That’s Ok. It will be a first for me (spoiling voting papers is allowed) and I will just consider that payment as coming out of the $250 vote buying fee the previous government recently paid directly into my bank account (as all Australians were gifted). Blatant bribery that was, and was seen to be I think, by many folk.
And so, Australia sets off into a brave new world, dulled by apathy and non-expectation. At least there is good reason to believe we will not be disappointed.