Required votes to catch up

Lots of seats are pretty close. I decided to work out what the necessary 2 party prefered  vote for the remainder of the count for the party to catch up. The values in the table are how the 2 party preferred vote needs to go to hit 50.1, for a given current 2PP vote and %
2 pp table

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The primary vote is irrelevant Tony

Watching the election results, the Liberals are trying to claim that the fact they got a higher primary vote somehow gives them the right to govern.

I don’t know when we moved to a first past the post system in this country. My primary vote didn’t go to Labor, but it sure as hell wasn’t because I wanted you to win.

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I hear there’s an election today.

I guess if I’m going to be doing a political blog, I need to talk about the election today.

Abbott is completely backwards looking, posesses no imagination, and his campaign has been completely negative. He has focussed on irrelevant crap like the debt (one of the smallest in the world) and boat people (a trickle that no government will stop), has no coherent policy on climate change (not surprisingly when you consider how he got the job – rolling a leader who wanted to help Labor get a piss weak emission trading scheme through). His views on women would have been backwards in the 1950s. During this campaign he has treated the Australian public like morons, and god help us if he gets away with it. Examples of his stupidity can be found at

Of the major parties, the ALP is a long way in front. They have a vision for the future and have done a very good job at keeping people in jobs during the financial crisis. The NBN is a great policy that will look cheap in 20 years time. On the other hand, they have been completely gutless on climate change (the atmosphere isn’t going to wait for us to win over the deniers), the internet filter is a piece of pointless stupidity, and their position on gay marriage is pathetic.

Of course, there are other options to the majors, notably the Greens. The Greens are the only party with a policy on climate change that acknowledges reality, and they are strong on a whole bunch of stuff (like the filter and gay marriage) that Labor aren’t. The negatives for the Green is that because they aren’t serious candidates for government they still have lots of half baked policies. Their nuclear policies are silly, and their economic policies aren’t much more than a few left wing mother hood statements.

So for me the options come down to a party that has proven it can govern responsibly and still deliver some decent policies that do improve the lives of people who really need it, or a party who have more policies I agree with, but still need to prove they are capable of the compromises a party needs to make.

PS: I think the ALP will win today with around 80 seats, and the Greens will win Melbourne.

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Lizards and preferential voting

There’s a line from one of the hitchhikers guide to the galaxy books about a planet ruled by lizards, because people don’t want to vote the wrong lizard in. If those people lived in Australia, they wouldn’t have to make that choice.

The preferential voting system is actually pretty unique in the world. Most countries with single member electorates use first past the post, where you select one candidate, and the candidate with the most number one votes wins. In first past the post voting, you sometimes have to make the decision between voting for the person you really want to win, but know have no chance, and making sure that the person you really want to lose doesn’t win.

In preferential voting, you don’t have to make this choice. You can vote for whoever you like the best, and make sure that the person who really don’t want to win never gets your vote.

Although it helps the Greens and the ALP more now. It was actually  started in 1918,  after the Country party (ancestor of the National party), started splitting the conservative vote, allowing the ALP to win a few naturally conservative seats.

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