Thursday, April 22, 2010

Ahhh - The Democrats

From the Crikey Tips and Rumours section today;

The failed candidate on the undemocratic Democrats: Jeanie Walker, the lead candidate for the Upper House in South Australia for the Australian Democrats, has resigned in anger from the party. She was unsuccessful in the election, winning only 0.9% of the vote -- the Democrats' worst-ever result in SA. Walker has blamed her poor showing upon the large number of other candidates, the low third party/independent vote, and David Winderlich -- whom she accuses of "stealing" her seat. She also blames individuals within the SA Democrats who did not support her as candidate. She has expressed her unwillingness to continue to work with certain individuals who are seeking constitutional reform within the Democrats -- and has accused them of "spamming" her, verging upon "harassment".

They really know how to rip into themselves. I have certain first hand experience on how the party choses to conduct itself as a collctio of personal campaigns and feifdoms. They make ALP factionalism look civilised by comparison.

The well meaning few souls who are trying to keep the ship afloat need to do something far more radical than they have been doing thus far. While their policy development work has at least revived their relevance hasn't.

The battle cries of "keep the bastards honest" don't reverberate, the need for a soft liberal party doesn't exist (it is mostly what the non-socialist ALP has become). Too much of their reason for being is to commemorate the glories of a Democrat past.

What they really need to do is claim the mantle of being the antithesis of the Howard Liberals. Totally libertarian in social policy, heavily social democrat in economic policy, and the champions for an internationalist outlook.


Former Democrat said...

How do you know it is not the "well meaning few souls" who have sabotaged all chances of reform? That was my experience.

David Havyatt said...

That was my implication. They are "well meaning" but ultimately are hnging onto a mythologised past.

Anonymous said...

It's a great pity that the Democrats never really got serious about their political goals like their UK 'sister party' the Liberal Democrats.

Their recent "rebuild" program has been all spin and no substance - and has turned what's left of the party into a comedy of strategic and tactical errors.

Unfortunately, the agony of the Democrats demise is not yet over - and until it is, Australia cannot look forward to the emergence of a truly progressive 3rd force like the UK enjoys.

The Democrats need to take down the shingle, and vacate the important space in Australian politics that they never properly understood or utilised to optimal effect.

Former Democrat said...

I really believed in the New Democrats project, I was crushed when it was killed.