||Representing the best interests of WA
A Political Party for Western Australia
|Themes:||Western Australia woz robbed. By the Eastern States, mostly.|
||Upper House: WA
Lower House: Almost every lower house seat in WA
|Preferences:||The WA Party is playing its cards very close to its chest. They provide no preferences in the senate, simply reminding voters that they must number at least 6 boxes above the line.|
Policies & Commentary
The tyranny of the alphabet tells me that I should be writing about the Australian Conservatives next, but I really can’t bear it. So instead you are going to get a short post about a party that I certainly will not have the opportunity to vote for – the Western Australia Party.
I have to admit, I have a soft spot for the old classic ‘hey, why does the government ever give *our* region anything’ tiny party. I am, frankly, a bit sad that we don’t have one in my region this year, but you can’t have everything. So, let’s see what the WAP wants us to know about them.
Well, judging by their front page, they are very much into eating apples, wearing yellow, and sporting little black swan logos. I don’t understand the apples, but the rest seems pretty sound. The party was apparently founded in 2016 ‘with the sole purpose of representing the people of WA to get a better deal from Canberra’, although they inform us that there was a party of the same name and with the same goals back in 1906, so that’s fun.
The WESTERN AUSTRALIA PARTY can be a strong independent voice in State and Federal Parliament to advocate for a change in the GST allocation formula, to give WA a much better deal.
Unlike other parties, we’re not controlled from the Eastern States. We have Western Australia in our hearts first and foremost.
Yes, I thought it might be about the GST. (Did anyone notice how many times Julie Bishop mentioned that *she* had been fighting for WA to get a bigger share of the GST in that interview where she explained that she could have won this election if only the Liberal Party had picked her as their leader? She’s a smart politician and she knows her audience…) While I am a mere Eastern States girl who doesn’t pay a lot of attention to political issues in WA, I gather that there has long been quite a lot of Feeling among Western Australians that they contribute more than their fair share of resources to Australia’s economy and don’t get enough back.
Their four bullet points on the front page are:
- Represent WA in Parliament
- A better deal from Canberra
- Economic Powerhouse
- GST for WA
But to learn more, we will have to go to other parts of their website.
Their Vision page expands on this, explaining that they want to do for WA what Nick Xenophon did for South Australia and Andrew Wilkie has done for Tasmania. I support this idea – I do think the less populous states can get a rough deal, and having an independent personality in Parliament to advocate for them can be helpful. Though… I don’t know how much Tasmania actually likes Wilkie?
It is pointed out to us that WA is the economic powerhouse of Australia, accounting for 46% of Australia’s exports. I was slightly surprised by this, because my understanding was that WA was in a bit of a downturn, but Wikipedia agrees with them. The Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade reckons it’s more like $35.1%, but those statistics are from 2016-2017, and I don’t know what direction the trend is. Either way, there is no question that they are hitting above their weight.
We are then informed that:
Western Australia has the resources and gross state product per capita to be within the top 50 economies of the world. Our lifestyle, wealth and culture is protected by WA’s isolation and low population numbers.
After which we get a graph showing the shameful, shameful state of GST contributions to WA. Which really do seem unreasonably low. Like many ‘hey, why is my region neglected?’ parties, WAP appears to have a point.
The Party Objectives are basically to represent Western Australian interests in Parliament. And they want their members to vote according to their consciences, which I like as an idea, but it does make it very difficult to work out what they are actually likely to stand for or support.
There are no policies on the website, but there is a page called ‘Family Matters’, which tells us that ‘he Family Court is under siege with perjury, restraining orders, parental alienation, and legalised asset stripping from one aggrieved partner to another.’
At which point I wail, wait, not another MRA party?
Yes. Yes, it is.
The Court should have its own professional body to investigate accusations of child abuse – which includes: Sustained alienation or denigration of the other parent : Preventing the other parent, under any pretext, carrying out their parental authority: Impeding the contact between the child or teenager and the other parent, or family.
Look, I really can’t face writing any more about domestic violence and child abuse and custody this evening. But for those who haven’t encountered the idea, parental alienation is the idea that children who are claiming to be afraid of or abused by one parent are doing so because the other parent has alienated them from that parent and coached them to lie. And therefore, the appropriate response is to remove the children from the ‘alienating’ parent’s custody and put them into the custody of the one they are claiming to have been abused by.
This puts a parent who suspects their co-parent of abuse in an impossible situation – if they fail to report, the child may be taken into care; but if they do report, they may be accused of parental alienation and lose custody of the child.
You can read a good article on parental alienation here, and here is an article written by two young women who were jailed as minors for refusing to live with their father.
There is, however, some light relief to be had here, because do you know what is *really* causing all of these problems?
Due to a lack of GST funding for law enforcement, the WA Family Court system is not coping with enforcement of orders, court perjury, or performing a detailed analysis on the impact on children after orders have been handed down.
Of course it is.
Oh, and I found another policy – it’s a one liner about a payment scheme for injured police officers that would allow them to be properly compensated.
Their Facebook gives us a few more hints. They want to align vehicle modification legislation across Australia, and they are unhappy about Shorten’s policy to abolish franking credit refunds. And they are sure that they can, if they try, hold the balance of power at the next election!
I’m at a bit of a loss for this group, to be honest. They seem to be 90% about GST, and I think that’s a fair complaint, but the random segue into parental alienation is a bit alarming. I suspect this might be one of those things where they have a candidate with *really strong opinions* on the matter, but since they are also in favour of conscience votes for all, and we don’t know which candidate that is, it’s a bit of a lottery.
Eurovision Theme Song as determined by me, very objectively
Oh, there could be only one choice for a political party like this. In 2010, Lithuania sent InCulto to Eurovision, where they sang about how Eastern European countries were treated like second class citizens of the EU. Despite possibly the best costume reveal in Eurovision history (does that make the surprise parental alienation stuff the sparkly hotpants in this analogy?), they didn’t make it through to the finals.
Which sounds like a fair prognosis for this party, frankly.