That’s because we currently live with systems created by old rich white dudes about 300 years ago, and in Australia up until 1962, positions of power in those systems were not open to:
Indigenous populationsHere are some dates for reference:
Anyone who was not able-bodied
Men under a certain threshold of wealth/employment/education
Renaissance ideas on the individual had taken over Europe by the 17th CenturyIn truth, access to positions of power in Australia for anyone excluded before 1962 has turned out to be mirage. The systems are so old and so biased that we still don’t have proportional representation of any of our major diverse populations in any positions of power. We definitely don’t have the most basic and visible manifestation of proportional representation, gender parity.
Parliamentary Democracy (British Edition): 1707
Industrial Revolution: 1760
Universal Male Suffrage (Britain): starts 1791, full by 1928
Non-Indigenous Male Suffrage (Australia): 1855
Non-Indigenous Female Suffrage (Australia): 1902
Suffrage for Indigenous Australians: 1962
We should also take into account that for a majority of cisgender able-bodied working men in Australia, a place in the system is not viable because it still requires a baseline of wealth and a household/team of people to run their life while they are in a position of power.
Observing the overwhelming number of old rich white dudes representing us in the Australian parliament, then, should not surprise us. But those old rich white dudes are no longer the majority in Australia, nor the world, so the systems that keep them in delusions of prime relevancy needs to go.
The system that we can affect most directly is the political system because we can all vote, and all stand as candidates.
The current political system we live under is not our circus, not our monkeys. And if the current political system is not ours, how do we build a political system that IS? We take our votes away from the old circus, and we field and vote for our own monkeys so we can build our own circus.
And this new political system has to be intersectional or it will be nothing. It has to be fucking inclusive, it has to be the antithesis of the old, broken, dying system or it simply won’t carry us into the future with any kind of success.
Since there is only one degree of separation between my own circumstances and that of Mr Tony Abbott, Prime Minister AUST#28 - our difference in gender - the only builders of the new political circus I can really talk to are the
(PLEASE NOTE: I am white, middle class, raised Catholic and Conservative and I have a major boner for the history of Fascim. Tony and I, in another life, would be soulmates)So,
Find your own policies, build your own campaign teams, field your own candidates and vote for the candidates who have the best vision for new politics you can find. You are the only people who can build the future, because the existing systems are dying, and trying to take us all down with them.
And for all of our sakes, be militantly inclusive; as 51% of the Australian population, the
No old rich white dudes. Literally, none. They have their playground, and they are welcome to the cesspool it is right now. Not our circus, not our monkeys, not our job to clean it up.
If they want to be on the side of progress and in the midst of the new politics, their roles include:
Making cups of teaWe outnumber them; it’ll be our circus and our monkeys quicker than you could imagine.
Getting the sponge cake into and out of the oven
Minding the crèche
Doing the washing up
Bloody well moving up the ladder of humility until they reach the rest of us in our new political landscape
A national political party advocating for women? It's time by Jane Gilmore at Women's Agenda
Think about social media and how connected women’s groups are, and how easy it would be to reach out to your base. Think about the Country Women’s Association and how terribly the regional areas are treated by Canberra.
Think about the (so far) 52 women killed this year, the pay gap getting worse, the gender disparity in our national leadership and how no one in our current parliament appears even slightly interested in genuine action on those things.
What Can I Do? (within the existing system)
And we will not be alone: Women's Equality Party, UK
What to do now
JOIN your local CWA and start being politically informed on a practical level. Tell your CWA group that you are interested in female candidates and electoral change:
CWA Western Australia
CWA Northern Territory
CWA New South Wales
CWA South Australia
The Associated Country Women of the World
EMAIL the Women's Equality Party in the UK and tell them that you are interested in an Australian Women's Equality Party.
READ this: What Can I Do? (outside the existing system)
What to do before the 2016 Election
LOOK for the women who are politically active in your area, and talk to them - each electorate will need a CANDIDATE, a CAMPAIGN TEAM and a MENTOR - and to be honest, you already know who they are, or you'll find them in less than a week.
What to do until the 2016 Election
ADD the Independent Media to your life
What to do in the 2016 Election
BE the winning candidate, build the winning campaign team or vote for a new type of politics in Australia.
OTHER THOUGHTS ON AUSTRALIAN POLITICS
Australia has three major political parties, each backed by their own training and voting block: the Australian Greens have the Environmental and Activist movements, Labor has the Unions and the Liberal Party has the business sector.
The largest population in Australia without a voice is women; our very urgent needs for parity, safety and leaders are being ignored and wound back, our leadership is locked out of power and as voters we are unable to direct our vote to a party that champions us.
Australian women do, however, have an established and proven mentorship and training ground for female candidates to gain political experience and female voters to gain access to candidates to influence policy; the Country Women's Association.
Fighting Winter with Summer
I credit the 1% with being fully aware of the impending water and energy conflicts, and it is clear from their actions that they are taking the requisite steps to survive while preventing the population from taking the same steps. Unfortunately their pride and entitlement will never allow them to consider the fact that their place in the 1% means nothing to the environment. Water and energy do not obey, and never have obeyed, the forces of nations, economies and capitalism.
Anyone who thinks they can argue for 21st Century Climate Aware action with 20th Century Climate Ignorant ideologies is going to be pulled back into historical patterns of conflict and paralysis, which is exactly where the Government and their corporate partners want their population.
Ask for me tomorrow
The current Australian Government makes announcements that destabilise the news cycle, and these announcements come in two forms:
1. An outrageous suggestion designed to let opponents react with scorn and satire, but neither suggestion nor satire achieves anything but noise, and a false sense of protest for those who did not vote for this current Australian Government.
2. A very real threat that opponents cannot ignore, but is sure to be withdrawn or watered down once it has short circuited the news cycle and wasted the time and resources of those who did not vote for this current Australian Government.