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It ain't easy being small and anti-Green

By Anthony Cox - posted Friday, 8 November 2013

The NCTCS Party opposes the faulty science which is used to support the concept of man-made global warming. This science has been contradicted if not repudiated. The NCTCS opposed the ALP's support of this science and, under the influence of the Greens, the proposed 'solutions', particularly the vast amounts of money to be invested in renewable energy and the locking away of large areas of farmland pursuant to the various carbon 'farming' legislation.

The Coalition's approach to AGW, while less expensive and therefore economically damaging to Australia than the policies of the ALP and Greens was still unnecessary and nothing more than money wasted. The policies to do with 'solving' AGW which the Coalition is keeping are both extensive and expensive and include a continuation of the ALP's carbon 'farming' legislation, the Clean Energy Regulator, or the "carbon cop", as well as other costly measures which have no scientific justification all of which were part of their amorphous Direct Action policy.

Equally importantly, Greg Hunt the Coalition Minister in charge of AGW appears as both an avowed believer in AGW and either misunderstands the effect and purpose of the United Nation's Agenda 21 or is being disingenuous about it.


From the viewpoint of the NCTCS therefore, while the ALP/Greens alliance was the worst the Coalition was a poor alternative when it came to implementing policies in favor of AGW. To rub salt into the wound the Coalition had been marketing itself as the No Carbon Tax party. Given that they still planned to retain a Renewable Energy Target and a host of other pro-AGW solutions the fact that they were going to abolish the carbon tax was, in effect, a slight difference only from the calamitous policies of the ALP under the influence of the Greens.

Foremost of the NCTCS's political aims was to counter the Greens and their influence over primarily the ALP but, to a lesser extent, the Coalition and the Australian political climate generally.

The NCTCS decided their best chance to have a Senator elected was in South Australia. In the previous election their number one candidate, Leon Ashby had gained a reasonable % of the vote. This time if he gained the same % he was in with a chance of being elected.

The election of Senators for each state is determined by the Droop Quota [DQ]. The DQ is the next integer larger than V/(n+1) where V = the total valid poll and n is the number of seats. Any quota smaller than the DQ carries a real, or at least theoretical, risk of more candidates being elected than there are seats to be filled. If no party gets a quota outright then preferential voting comes into play. Preferential voting allows a bottom up allocation of votes for the final quota [s] where those parties, including the major 2 parties with their surpluses from allocated quotas, all compete for the votes of those parties who have relatively less votes in the final quota[s] and are progressively excluded.

Various commentators such as Antony Green and other technically savvy bloggers have lamented that small parties can be elected due to votes being preferentially passed from party to party at stages of the count when other parties see their chances end. Some of these commentators have called for an end to preferential voting. This is based on a fundamental misunderstanding of the nature and essence of democracy. Democracy in Australia is based on individual voting rights. It would be a contradiction in terms for any one vote to lapse at one stage before the last Senator is elected. In a system dominated by 2 large parties the electoral potential of various smaller parties with differing policies not only enhances individual choices but refines the capacity of the system to cater for particular interest groups rather than dishing up a generic grey compromise. In respect of the issue of AGW, probably the single biggest issue to hit Australia, that would mean the Tweedle dee and Tweedle dum approach of the large parties could be mitigated by an evidence and factual based approach offered by NCTCS.

In short the preference system helps improve outcomes for voters; even when such deals allocate preferences in ways they would not themselves. For example, imagine a situation where one voter strongly prefers the Cat party to the Dog party but only has a mild preference for the Apple party over the Orange party, and another has a mild preference for the Dog party over the Cat party but strongly prefers the Orange party to the Apple party. If these two voters make a deal with each other to both put the Cat party over the Dog party and the Orange party over the Apple party, then each will be happier with the electoral outcome even though their own ballot less closely reflects their own preferences.


What really determines the result of the last quota is 'horse-trading' between all the parties for preference swaps. There were 30 individual party groups running for the last Federal Senate position in South Australia. Negotiations involved trading votes in other states for votes in South Australia with these preference selections given to the Australian Electoral Commission at or before 12 noon on the Saturday after the Issue of Writs.

In South Australia Leon Ashby had secured First preferences from 11 other parties. Apart from these parties' show of confidence in Leon, this looked to be a winning group of preferences from other parties which he calculated would give him a senate seat after 35 counts or preference allocations. Antony Green and other commentators who should have known better queried this approach as a betrayal of the basic principle of NCTCS. That is by preferencing the ALP over the Coalition the NCTCS was reneging on its policy to remove the carbon tax and oppose AGW.

This objection was based on a misunderstanding of the intrinsic nature of the preferencing system. Firstly, the ALP was preferenced 93 to 98 by the NCTCS and the Coalition preferences began at 99 with all the other minor parties preferenced before the 2 main parties. So the order of NCTCS preferences was every minor party then Labor, LNP and Greens.Secondly, the NCTCS's preference strategy was consistent with its aim to reduce the presence of the Greens.

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About the Author

Anthony Cox is a lawyer and secretary of The Climate Sceptics.

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All articles by Anthony Cox

Creative Commons LicenseThis work is licensed under a Creative Commons License.

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