Roadtest: Minor Political Parties

With all the toing and froing between Abbott and Rudd during this year’s very long and drawn out election campaign, it has often felt like a two-horse race. What of all the alternative parties – those representing very specific and some very unusual policies? Here we take a closer look at some of the minor parties and find out what they are all about…


Australian Fishing and Lifestyle Party

While their general policies do mention things like building a solid economic base, securing our borders, the standardisation of services Australia-wide, economic and compassionate immigration (only at levels Australia’s social infrastructure can handle, of course) and responsible environmental interactions, this party exists to fight the “ever-increasing trashing of our basic rights.” They stand against the overblown bureaucracy they believe restricts the great outdoor Aussie lifestyle and threatens to “turn us into an indoor nation of nerds.”


Bullet Train for Australia Party

If you’re thinking there’s more to this party than meets the eye, think again. They stand for a Bullet Train for Australia – and that’s pretty much it. While the party members are often asked about their position on other issues, their official website states: “we are proudly focused on one (very big) single issue. We don’t stray into discussions about other policy areas. It’s just not our bag.” To sum up: “The Bullet Train for Australia Party has no official position on any other policy areas apart from High-Speed-Rail (HSR), Bullet Trains, Very Fast Trains, Fast-rail and related topics.” Yep, these people love trains.


Coke in the Bubblers Party

No, this party is not about installing coke-filled bubblers (although we’re sure some dentists would be happy about that money-making idea). The interesting name came from the thought that for years students have been elected school captain on the promise of putting ‘coke in the bubblers’ and unfortunately it seems political leaders are trapped in a similar system that has them promising things they actually can’t deliver. The party’s values are listed as Responsibility to the Future, Reason and Respect, People Before Politics and Collaboration.


Help End Marijuana Prohibition (HEMP) Party

First and foremost this cleverly named party stands for – you guessed it – the legalisation of marijuana for personal, medical and industrial use. Among other things, this group believes that allowing people to grow and buy marijuana through regulated registered outlets would consequently reduce the flow of cannabis money to criminal gangs as well as free up police time for tackling real crime. Plus it would alleviate the suffering of the chronically ill and allow people to “enjoy a spiritual, relaxing experience – legally.”  Well, you can’t argue with that. Come to think of it I need a bit of alleviation right now…


Australian Sex Party

You might be surprised to find that the Australian Sex Party stands for more than just people’s right to have sex. You might say they focus on all the controversial issues. A summary of their policies includes the regulation of the marijuana industry, the decriminalisation of personal drug use, legalisation of same sex marriage as well as voluntary euthanasia and abortion, a secular education system, national anti-discrimination laws and uniform censorship laws. Oh, they also oppose the mandatory retention of Australians’ internet browsing history and emails for at-will inspection by law enforcement agencies and believe churches should pay their fair share of tax. I might give you a few minutes to stew on all that.

•Words: Nancy Merlo

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