Meet the Small Parties: Rise Up Australia Party

Look, there’s one thing you can say for Rise Up Australia.  They may not be a pleasant bunch, but you do know exactly where you stand with them.  Their front page highlights their slogan “Keep Australia Australian!”, and we are assured that Rise Up Australia Party is for people from all ethnic backgrounds who call Australia home, who value our freedoms and who want to protect our Australian culture and way of life”.

So they are obviously not racist, because you can be of any ethnic background.

Currently on their front page is a press release “Faith leaders unite to protect life, faith and moral values”, which they tell us that Daniel Nalliah, their president, is one of the first party leaders publicly to endores “a statement by the eminent leaders of the Jewish, Christian and Muslim faiths identifying the four crucial moral issues in the Victorian State election.

“Rabbi Shimon Cowen, Bishop Peter Elliott and Imam Riad Galil say in their statement that The Victorian law permitting abortion without anaesthetic until birth is the worst abortion law in the world. The UN-sponsored Safe School’s programme to promote homosexuality in schools under the guise of preventing bullying is an attack on the freedom of parents to have children raised according to the values of their faith. Labor’s proposal to force religious schools to employ staff who do not share the school’s religious faith attacks the freedom and integrity of religious institutions. All parents are entitled to obtain a religious education for their children but that neither of the major parties has announced a commitment to fulfilment of this need.”

I’m very excited to learn that we now have one eminent leader of the Christian faith (and one each for the Muslim and Jewish faiths) in Australia, and that he is Catholic.  It’s so nice to know that the One True Church has decided to embrace all of us Protestant heretics and bring us back to the fold…

And of course it would have to be Bishop Elliott, too.  As it happens, I have sat through several religious services conducted by Father Elliott.  My fellow choristers and I used to try to predict in advance whether today would be the day he was insulting to atheists, or perhaps the day he was insulting to women, or maybe even the day when he told us about how all Christians are peaceful, unlike those awful Muslims.  There was a scoring system.  It’s nice to see that he has at least found common cause with one Muslim, even if it is in this cause.

Suffice it to say that I am not even slightly surprised that he has found common cause with Rise Up Australia, a party who has never met a right-wing religious policy they didn’t like.

(I’ll leave it to members of the Jewish or Muslim faiths to comment on Rabbi Cowen or Imam Galil.  I’m guessing they are cut from a similar cloth.)

As for the four crucial moral issues, well, interestingly, the actual statement doesn’t say anything about abortion without anaesthetic until birth, possibly because that’s not the actual law in Victoria – I’ve been looking, and have found absolutely no evidence one way or the other, though I have discovered that actually getting a late-term abortion is no easier than it was before it was legalised – but it’s much more emotive and thus more fun.  Anyway, no surprises here.

The bit where preventing bullying is promoting homosexuality is – well, it’s a moral issue, alright, but not the one they think it is.  Parents may have the freedom to raise children according to their values, but children should also have the freedom not to be bullied at school because they happen to be gay, or because someone thinks they might be.  To my mind, a child’s right to not be bullied trumps a parent’s right to dictate what the school teaches. If you are a parent, you have mornings and evenings and weekends and holidays in which to instil your values into your child.  If that isn’t working, it’s not the fault of the school.

As for the right to discriminate when hiring staff, honestly, I feel less strongly about that.  And while I agree that parents are entitled to obtain a religious education for their child, I don’t see why that is something the government should pay for in a secular country.

(And has Rise Up Australia really thought this through?  I imagine that Bishop Elliott, for all that I find his particular flavour of Catholicism obnoxious, does, in fact, approve of the existence of Muslim schools in Australia, but I’d be very, very surprised if Rise Up Australia does.)

So much for the front page.  Let’s move on to the Group Voting Ticket, pausing only to note in passing that Rise Up Australia is another political party with a song.  It’s awful.  If this were Eurovision, I’d be giving Jeff Bartram douze points, the Basics Rock and Roll Party ten points, and Rise Up Australia nul points.  This isn’t about ideology, even.  My objection is 100% aesthetic.

For a change, we have quite a consistent group voting ticket.  At the top, we have the Australian Christians, the DLP, Family First, the Shooters and Fishers, and the Country Alliance.  People Power also gets a look in periodically.  The order changes, but the parties do not.  The Liberal Party is showing up fairly high on the ticket, the Labor Party fairly low, and the Greens are at the very bottom, with the Animal Justice Party, Rock and Roll Party, Palmer United, Sex Party, Voluntary Euthanasia, and Cyclists, just above them.  It’s a straight right to left ticket, essentially.

AJP, Palmer, Sex, Cyclists, Greens (Rock/Roll, Euth -0 all at bottom)

On to the policies.

The really obvious stuff

Rise Up Australia is anti-abortion.  The only surprise on this page was their entertaining assertion that EMILY’s List is “a feminist organisation established to get pro abortion women elected to government”.  I think there’s a little more to it than that

Rise Up Australia wants to ban the burqa and the niqab.  I have blogged about this fairly extensively, so I won’t go into it further here.  I’ll just say that they are wrong, obnoxiously wrong, and move on.

They oppose Same Sex Marriage, believe that every child needs a mother and father, and seem to be taking the view that homosexuality is the result of trauma and bad parenting.  Nice.  But they oppose hate crimes, because they aren’t like that.

They don’t believe in Climate change:

RUAP’s views on Global Warning have long been known.  It doesn’t exist!

So called “scientists” have finally realised that they are unable to convince us that it does, as it is difficult to justify that the planet is getting hotter and hotter, when it is also getting colder and colder.  This has caused them to change their alarmist rantings to now call it Climate Change.

I especially like the scare quotes around the so-called scientists.    Unsurprisingly, they also like coal.

The RUAP is against legalisation of drugs, wants tougher penalties, and thinks the solution is early education and strong families (especially relationships with fathers – fathers are very, very important to the RUAP).

They are pro-Israel.  Palestinians should be in Jordan anyway.  I can think of some places to send Rise Up Australia, too, if it comes to that.

The slightly less obvious policies

Being, as they are, on the far right of politics, it is not surprising that the RUAP wants to be tough on crime and strengthen the police force.  Of course, they also feel that divorce is one of the root causes of crime, and that this should be taught to children.  Drugs and alcohol are also root causes of crime.  Violence can be addressed by encouraging better relationships between children and fathers, and I see we have a bit about how women are driving a lot of family violence.  I detect a little bit of Mens Rights Activism here…

The RUAP doesn’t really like alcohol a lot more than it likes drugs, and wants to raise the drinking age to 21.  Again, education and good relationships with fathers are the answer.

The RUAP apparently supported the ALP’s NBN.  Remember the NBN?  I was so looking forward to it…

The Actually Not Half Bad Stuff

To do the RUAP justice, they do have some good things in their education policy.  They want to strengthen public schools, with a standardised curriculum, and they want to establish a school technology fund, and they want to add another pay grade at the top of the current teaching grades for exceptional teachers.  Surprisingly, their national curriculum includes Aboriginal history (though it also goes on rather about our Judeo-Christian heritage), and they want additional assistance for Aboriginal students to get to university.  And they want more TAFEs.  Oddly, school vouchers are not mentioned.

The RUAP wants a more efficient Welfare system that encourages self-reliance, which makes me feel rather suspicious, though their plans for helping people get back to work are actually fairly good – they want to identify specific barriers to employment so that they can frame support policies to break down these walls, and provide a ‘hand-up’,

Community support services may include referrals to local programs for child care; drug and alcohol rehabilitation; mental illness support; food banks; emergency accommodation (family violence/homelessness); financial counselling or a host of other assistance provided by government agencies or non-profit organisations…

Pathways to skilled work may include providing information, referrals and support for the unemployed to take up subsidised apprenticeships or assistance to enter further studies to gain qualifications. We would also help parents who are re-entering the workforce and may need to reskill or remarket themselves to obtain employment that strikes a healthy work-family balance.

Some thought has gone into this, and for a change, it isn’t a nasty thought.  I’m impressed.

The Weird Stuff

They have quite a reasonable policy on Animal Cruelty – nothing that the AJP would approve of, but moderate things about phasing out battery hens, humane slaughtering practices, tighter regulations on ‘cruelty-free’ cosmetics, and such.  And then they go off on a tangent about the evils of bestiality and its ties to child abuse.  I had never before seen the phrase ‘erotic zoos’, and my life was no less rich for the lack.

The RUAP has a policy on Rebellion.

Rebellion takes many forms. It can start with a child in the home disobeying his parents, to a university student protesting against………everything, and even to a government removing its leader.

Note that in this worldview there is no place for rebellion against authority to be legitimate.

The source of all of this, of course, is the Evil Left, who won’t let parents or schools discipline children.  And when they say discipline, they are talking about the physical kind.  Also, the Evil Left have taken over the education system and made it all ideological, which is *totally different* to taking over the education and making it all religious.  The RUAP wants to restore balance, because apparently “Universities teach mainly left wing socialist policy, and free independent thinking is controlled, or put down”.  OK then.

Under Depression, they have this very detailed seven point plan that has some good stuff in it, but is extremely reliant on volunteers who would be available 24 hours a day as ‘Community Connectors’, who would be ‘firstly a listening ear, gentle words where possible, notify other relevant professional if their client’s situation escalates to crisis and/or beyond their training’.  RUAP seems to be envisaging this as a role for senior citizens.  I think asking someone to be available 24/7 is a bit much for a volunteer, to be honest.  Since they are talking about supports for people who are suicidal, they need to give their volunteers a break – this sort of work is incredibly emotionally draining.

Interestingly, the RUAP wants to  integrate nutrition and a full physical work-up into treatment for depression, to catch any physical issues that might be driving it.  They also want to “Establish permanent programs in schools educating on healthy body image, healthy relationships, emotional health, etc that is age-specific”.  But tough luck if you are depressed because you are gay and your school thinks this is a bad thing…

The Protectionist Stuff

The RUAP wants to protect local manufacturing, and create tariffs to benefit Australian farmers and manufacturers.  And they want to get rid of red tape for small business, of course, because every party on the right of politics wants to do this.  They are against foreign ownership of Australian resources.

The RUAP is simply vile about refugees.  They view them as being mostly fraudulent.  And mostly Muslim, which is evidently nearly as bad.  And then they come here and live the high life on the dole while simultaneously taking our jobs.  Of course they do.

Those who emigrate to Australia must be assimilated.


You will be assimilated…

And with that, all their policies fall into place for me.  It’s so obvious now.  Clearly, the Rise Up Australia Party is composed of Cybermen.

We need a Doctor.


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