Early in the noughties, at least I think it was then, the second time Howard got voted in to power... I remember being at my boyfriends house at the time and the only person in the household rooting for that guy was my boyfriends sisters boyfriend (Bueller?!).
He actually came out of their room, where they were watching the telecast also, chanting "four more years".
I'm pretty sure the rest of us opened beers. For we knew that for us, low to middle income earners and students, that we were all screwed.
I mostly ignore polls in the media, especially the big media, because it's all owned by the same rich guy and seems rather biased. And somehow I don't believe that Abbott would win an election if there was a vote today. So far, not a single person I know has indicated that they support Liberal, the views of the party, and their absolute ignorance about things like climate change and providing their members with conscience votes on issues that may be important to their electorates (a prime example being gay marriage).
So if we think about just that for a moment... a Government that has policies yet doesn't let it's members choose to vote in either the Senate or the Lower House genuinely, and with the voices of their constituency.
Sometimes when I hear Abbott interviewed I get particularly worried. Here is a guy who has obviously never seen a documentary about water; conservation or use thereof. Countries around the world are pulling right away from putting up dams, and yet this guy wants to put in 150 of them in Australia. Who is advising this guy?! Obviously not a climatologist, scientist, conservationist, or anyone with any knowledge of the subject.
Growing up in South Australia, we always conserved water. Our State has always been the one that has suffered, being at this end of the Murray River. Cotton farmers are allowed to pull water out of the river systems at alarming rates in a country that is so baron and so dry and with so little agriculturally viable land. My father piped the water tank into the laundry sink, as well as the bathtub, in the 1980's. Why do I remember this?! Because I almost lost a toe helping him install the pipe from the shed to the tank. We would bucket water from the bathtub out on to the lawns when there had been little rain, and use the cold water from the water tank to half fill the tub or to do hand washing. It absolutely boggled the mind when moving up to Queensland in late 2004 only to find people whining about newly introduced water restrictions.
I was thinking "what?! you're only just getting them NOW?" - when us Southerners have had to always think about it. At least for the last 30 years.
Ranting aside, I'm freak;n scared. I hope Australia does not make the wrong choice.
Our most important issue, in case you hadn't noticed over this summer period, is the violent change in our weather patterns. Thinking about this yesterday; I don't recall these insane weather events happening throughout my childhood, and even into my teen years. And yet if you look at this summer, watching the news whilst they say "well there's 300 fires in NSW at the moment and 95 of them are uncontained..." you have to wonder... what's going to happen next?!
Can we not simply take the lead in a Green Energy Revolution?! Show the rest of the world how it's done. Push clean energy industries and make our exports again competitive ! Help the third world evolve, without the use of fossil fuels??!
I'm certain it can be done. But will Australia take up the challenge.
We shall see.
Stand strong, Australia.