Sunday, November 26, 2006


My sincere thanks to everyone who voted for me and to the people who gave up their valuable time to help me with the election. Despite the disappointing result, it was still very much worth the effort. The experience has taught me a lot of things about campaigning that I may use in future - make your campaign longer than two weeks is one of them. Unfortunately, other important demands on my time did not allow a longer lead-up to the election.

I offer my qualified congratulations to the Bracks Government on its re-election, but fear that many of the reasons that prompted me and other independents to run may still prevail in four years' time. Unless this Government moves beyond consultation to genuine community participation and engagement, it will continue to trade on the pathetic argument that it is merely better than the Liberals. I applaud its stance on industrial relations, but reject its policies on planning, public-private partnerships and gaming, to name but a few contentious matters.

Finally, I reject the corruption of idealism with the kind of debased political pragmatism we have seen in the Northcote campaign. I refer in particular to the misleading electoral material suggesting a preference deal between the Liberals and the Greens. In this, Labor has read from the Tampa book of political strategy, and should be ashamed for having done so.

For these reasons, I cannot congratulate Fiona Richardson as the beneficiary of such tactics - to do so would be to congratulate an interchangeable and generic cog in the Labor Party machine. I issue the challenge to her to prove to Northcote electors that she is more than this. Her actions will not escape scrutiny.

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Comments are most welcome on any of the posts at Northcote Independent. I encourage feedback - positive or negative. Feel free to disagree, but remember that posts are moderated to ensure they are on the topic and in the spirit of open debate, as outlined in my editorial policy.