Alrighty. My plane has finally left Abu Dhabi, so it must be time to look at another independent!
John Karragiannidis has a Facebook page, which seems to be largely friends-only, and thus not so helpful, and a GoFundMe page for his campaign, where I don’t think he has actually raised a lot of money, but which does, at least, give us a sense of what he is in this for.
Mr Karagiannidis was born in Greece and emigrated to Australia as a child in the sixties, but adds ‘I’m an Aussie, I call Oz home!’.
I will use your financial help for my campaign to realise my passionate and patriotic cause – to make my beautiful, exotic and great country Australia stronger and prosperous and leave it as a vibrant legacy to our future generations.
So far, so good, and I do like the way he expresses himself. Like many of the independents, he makes the standard complaint at the political duopoly, and – ha – objects to the new Senate reforms:
I’m sick and tired of the political duopoly come oligopoly that’s made a mess of this country. To reinforce this political duopoly come oligopoly, most of the political parties voted to change the Electoral Act, I believe, to make the election of independent senators confusing and difficult.
I think he’s called it. And, bless his cotton socks, not only does he want transparency and accountability but he’s rolled out ‘Keep the bastards honest’ on his policy list. I’m rather liking Mr Karagiannidis.
His top priority is improving disability and aged care service, while reducing waste, and he has 20 years in disability service. He also says ‘I’m also look an advocate for a disabled man’ – I’m not sure if he’s trying to say that he is such and advocate or that he is seeking one.
Other priorities are generally left of centre, and include stopping domestic violence, reducing unemployment by fostering innovation and job creating opportunities, advocating for regional development and regionalising government services, and being a bit sensible about the environment about climate change. These are all one line policies, so the exact nature of what some of this means is unclear. Which is, of course, a bit of a problem.
Mr Karagiannidis feels that Australian farms should be owned by Australians, and that foreign companies should be forced to pay tax here. He is also in favour of ‘responsible value adding immigration’. It’s hard to know just what the latter means, but it sounds like he’s about the same vintage as my father, who emigrated from Italy as a child in the fifties, so I suspect he’s talking about people much like himself and his family, who would have come out, worked at whatever job they could get, and made sure their children got better opportunities. But this is a guess. And I am not unbiased here, because setting aside my own sense of common ground with him, I’m just really enjoying his writing style. Though I do wish he had written something beyond his terribly unsuccessful fundraiser.
I’m going to end by letting Mr Karagiannidis speak for himself, since he really does this well:
Are these [goals] achievable? Is my patriotic passion achievable? Yes!! You bet they are!! They just need a resourceful, tenacious, dedicated, intelligent, passionate and forceful independent Senator to fight for you – ME! Please help me to serve you.