Posts Tagged ‘Independent’

Australia day 26/1, what are we celebrating?

August 28, 2017

Australia day, what does it celebrate.

Before 1770 – Aboriginal peoples had been living for more than 40 000 years on the continent we now know as Australia. At least 1600 generations of these peoples had lived and died here.

Europeans from the thirteenth century became interested in details from Asia about this land to the south. From the sixteenth century, European cartographers and navigators gave the continent various names, including Terra Australis (Southern Land) and New Holland.

1770 – Captain James Cook raised the Union Jack on what is now called Possession Island on 22 August to claim the eastern half of the continent as New South Wales for Great Britain.

1788 – Captain Arthur Phillip, commander of the First Fleet of eleven convict ships from Great Britain, and the first Governor of New South Wales, arrived at Sydney Cove on 26 January and raised the Union Jack to signal the beginning of the colony.

Captain Arthur Phillip, was instructed to “live in amity and kindness” with Indigenous Australians

Note; Phillip went on toignore the Kings mandate that he negotiate for use of the Land, as did Cook under the letters patient.

1788 – The Australian frontier wars began, they were a series of conflicts that were fought between Indigenous Australians and British settlers, with an estimated 30 to 30,000 aboriginal people being killed, these battles continued until around 1934.

1804 – Early almanacs and calendars and the Sydney Gazette began referring to 26 January as First Landing Day or Foundation Day. In Sydney, celebratory drinking, and later anniversary dinners became customary, especially among emancipists.

1818 – Governor Macquarie acknowledged the day officially as a public holiday in NSW on the thirtieth anniversary. The previous year he accepted the recommendation of Captain Matthew Flinders, circumnavigator of the continent, that it be called Australia.

*1837;  Sir Henry Parkes, Premier of New South Wales, planned something for everyone, or almost everyone. When questioned about what was being planned for the Aborigines, Parkes retorted, ‘And remind them that we have robbed them?

1838 – Proclamation of an annual public holiday for 26 January marked the Jubilee of the British occupation in New South Wales. This was the second year of the anniversary’s celebratory Sydney Regatta.

1838 – Aboriginal people started to morn the 26th of January

1871 – The Australian Natives’ Association, formed as a friendly society to provide medical, sickness and funeral benefits to the native-born of European descent, became a keen advocate from the 1880s of federation of the Australian colonies within the British Empire, and of a national holiday on 26 January.

1888 – Representatives from Tasmania, Victoria, Queensland, Western Australia, South Australia and New Zealand joined NSW leaders in Sydney to celebrate the Centenary. What had begun as a NSW anniversary was becoming an Australian one. The day was known as Anniversary or Foundation Day.

1901 – The Australian colonies federated to form the Commonwealth of Australia. The Union Jack continued as the national flag, taking precedence over the Australian red and blue shipping ensigns gazetted in 1903.

Federation became entrenched on the 9th of May 1901 was the first day Parliament of the commonwealth sat. Schools were still celebrated federation day under the British flag.

Melbourne was the interim federal capital. The Australian Capital Territory was created out of New South Wales in 1908, the federal capital named Canberra in 1913, and the Parliament House opened there in 1927.

1911 – Empire day was earmarked as the first Australia day, May 24.

1915 – July 30th was called “Australia Day” to help raise money for Aussie troops.

1930 – The Australian Natives’ Association in Victoria began a campaign to have 26 January celebrated throughout Australia as Australia Day on a Monday, making a long weekend. The Victorian government agreed with the proposal in 1931, the other states and territories following by 1935.

1936 – Aboriginal people labelled 26th of January “Day of mourning”

1938 – While state premiers celebrated the Sesquicentenary together in Sydney, Aboriginal leaders met there for a Day of Mourning to protest at their mistreatment by white Australians and to seek full citizen rights.

1946 – The Australian Natives’ Association prompted the formation in Melbourne of an Australia Day Celebrations Committee (later known as the Australia Day Council) to educate the public about the significance of Australia Day. Similar bodies emerged in the other states, which in rotation, acted as the Federal Australia Day Council.

1948 – The Nationality and Citizenship Act created a symbolic Australian citizenship. Australians remained British subjects.

1954 – The Australian blue ensign was designated the Australian national flag and given precedence over the Union Jack. The Australian red ensign was retained as the commercial shipping ensign.

1960 – The first Australian of the Year was appointed: Sir Macfarlane Burnet, a medical scientist. Other annual awards followed: Young Australian of the Year, 1979; Senior Australian of the Year, 1999, and Australia’s Local Hero, 2003.

1972 – Tent embassy was established by Aborigine elders, opposing the date chosen for Australia day.

1979 – The Commonwealth government established a National Australia Day Committee in Canberra to make future celebrations ‘truly national and Australia-wide’. It took over the coordinating role of the Federal Australia Day Council. In 1984 it became the National Australia Day Council, based in Sydney, with a stronger emphasis on sponsorship. Incorporation as a public company followed in 1990.

1984 – Australians ceased to be British subjects. Advance Australia Fair replaced God Save the Queen as the national anthem.

*1988 – Sydney continued to be the centre of Australia Day spectacle and ceremony. The states and territories agreed to celebrate Australia Day in 1988 on 26 January, rather than with a long weekend.

Aborigines renamed Australia Day, ‘Invasion Day’. The Bondi Pavilion protest concert foreshadowed the Survival Day Concerts from 1992.

1994 – Celebrating Australia Day on 26 January became established. The Australian of the Year Award presentations began alternating between Sydney, Canberra, Melbourne and Brisbane.

2001 – Centenary of federation. The National Australia Day Council’s national office had returned to Canberra the previous year. In 2001 the Council transferred from the Department of Communications, Information Technology and the Arts to that of the Prime Minister and Cabinet. Australians’ growing familiarity with the Australia Day holiday led the Council to focus on shaping their awareness of its significance and meaning.

2004 – The presentation of Australia Day awards — the focus of Australia Day — became fixed in Canberra.

The Australian frontier wars were a series of conflicts that were fought between Indigenous Australians and mainly British settlers that spanned a total of 146 years. The first fighting took place several months after the landing of the First Fleet in January 1788 and the last clashes occurred as late as 1934

To summarise, New South Wales — Sydney especially — has long celebrated 26 January to mark the beginning of British occupation of Australia. Victoria and the other Australian states and territories, persuaded by the Australian Natives’ Association, came to accept Australia Day by 1935, celebrating it together with a long weekend. Since 1979, federal government promotion of an Australia Day that was less British and more Australian gave the day a higher profile in the hope of unifying Australia’s increasingly diverse population. The long weekend gave way to the day itself in 1994, and ten years later Canberra displaced Sydney as the day’s focal point.

Dates for Australia day have been numerous, 9th of May is the day we became federated, NSW had 26th of January as their special day, other states celebrated their dates coinciding with settlement as British colonies.

The Australian name and flag were created long after Phillip landed in NSW and proclaimed it as a British colony.

May 24th, May 9th, July 30th have all been called Australia day at different times in Australia’s history.

 

However, Aboriginal Australians have continued to feel excluded from what has long been a British pioneering settler celebration, symbolised by the raising of the Union Jack and later, on another date, the Australian flag which bears the British flag. Debate over the date and nature of Australia Day continues as the National Australia Day Council seeks to meet the challenge of making 26 January a day all Australians can accept and enjoy.

I am uncertain Phillips landing and proclamation as a British colony is the right date, considering it is such a sad one for the Aboriginal people.

You can add to this brief overview of history if you like or use it to research an ideal day to celebrate, but for me, it best be a date that genuinely celebrates Australia as a nation, so I would say May 9th, but each to their own.

The date should be able to be celebrated by all Australians, including the original people of this land.

Mark Aldridge

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Section 44 & the can of worms

August 19, 2017

The section 44 issue for our elected members……interesting facts.

1. I pointed this out to the electoral commission on many occasions, a formal complaint can be found on line, what was done “Nothing”
2. I made sure the political parties new, and the media, what was done “Nothing”.
3. So far they are targeting Federal politics, but the same law applies to state pollies, so when are they opening that can of worms.
4. You will notice all those being caught out now, are not stepping down, even though when they signed up as candidates, their nominations were invalid, they all lied on their applications, so have offended the Constitution and federal and state electoral law.
5. If they had no right to run, then they cannot have been duly elected.
6. If that be the case, what about all the decision they have made, all the money we the people have paid them, and all the perks they have used? WHAT ABOUT ALL THE HUGE LIFE TIME PENSIONS……

7. So they will argue I assume something based on Sykes V Cleary, or similar cases, and hope the high court will allow them to remain, ie “I didnt know” or I did not use the benefit.
8. So can we the people now argue the same, sorry officer I did not know my car was unregistered, sorry officer I thought it was an 80 zone, sorry officer I did not know it was his money, its OK I haven’t spent it, etc etc, not a chance.
9. In each case the election is invalid, and with so many elections in valid, we must conclude the general election was also invalid, but how many.
10. Have there been other dodgy practices, yes indeed, so too many to list here.
11. Are the AEC, SEC and the MP’s aware of the other dodgy issues and abuse of law, yes they are.
12. Are the media aware of all these issues, yes they are.

So why have they all tried to cover up?

Open all the cans and let the worms out, expose the broken system, sure it up, and start again, by restoring democracy and our right to a genuine free and informed vote, a secure one.

Same Sex Marriage, who decides?

August 13, 2017

IF YOU’RE over the idea of reading yet another blog on marriage equality, I can emphasize with you.

 

 

Let’s be honest, debates like this make me want to turn of the news, and retreat into my sanctuary where the cynicism of modern-day politics does not exist.

If it was a brief informed discussion, or a simple democratic process, I would be more than happy, as always to consider what my 2 cents would be worth.

Marriage is a simple word, for so long it described the union of a man and a woman, parliament defined it, as is their power under the constitution, and they defined it in line with the Dictionary definition.

I have yet to have any of my gay friend’s demand marriage, I do remember the fight for social inclusion, and to have the same equity at law as those who held a government certificate (Marriage).

When this debate started, when was that now, a decade ago now? I always wondered if another word could be chosen, rather than marriage, something to adorn the top of their government certificate, that shows their commitment to each other.

Seems my idea was less than favorable, but it was simply my mind trying to find a way to end this debate and move on to the more important social issues we all face, regardless of our choice of partner.

Before you accuse me of a lack of compassion, may I argue my case?

I love my partner, she loves me, well I am pretty sure she still does, a government endorsed certificate does not define our love what so ever, are we married, yes we are. Why did we get married, hmmm that would be an interesting debate, was it to prove a commitment, a legal contract, I might get back to you on that 😊

I see posters that say “love is love” or I want my right! They are both right, Love is Love, even with out a government endorsement, and rights, well we all are suffering a lack of defined protections, regardless of our choice of partner.

Sydney broadcaster Alan Jones tweeted: “Re Gay Marriage. Love is a very elusive thing. If 2 people find love we shouldn’t be making judgments about it or getting in the way.”

Who is getting in the way of love, who is judging others, are those opposed homophobic?

Let’s get this debate back on track; “The only ones to blame are our elected representatives”, they represent electorates, if they don’t know what their electorate wants, they are in the wrong job. Parliament is empowered by the Constitution to define Marriage.

Fact is parliament have been doing as they please for years, so our will means little to them, and an expansive poll will do little to push them either way.

It is not as if they are not aware of the topic, it is not as if they cant simply draw up the changes and vote on them, like any other legislative redefining, they do it every day.

The fact is the very people you chose to represent you, are not, they are representing political parties, vested interests, so this debate simply exposes the flaws in our democratic process, flaws you already knew existed.

There is no need to waste 120 to 150 million asking the people, when the outcome will be wishy washy, dodgy and non-binding.

If any representative is unsure, let them poll their electorates, and if their parties won’t let them vote on legislative change, let them declare to their electorate where they stand, we can all do the maths can’t we.

There are those in the LGBTI community that are already far more vulnerable to anxiety and depression (they’re also up to 14 times more likely to attempt suicide) as a direct result of the past decades they have fought for acceptance alone.

The last thing they need is a huge national debate that will achieve nothing, what we all need is educated discussion with our representatives, and to empower their ability to achieve our will, everything else is divisional and a detraction.

Within hours of the government’s commitment to a plebiscite, former prime minister Tony Abbott was telling the nation: “If you’re worried about religious freedom and freedom of speech, vote ‘no’, and if you don’t like political correctness, vote ‘no’ because voting ‘no’ will help to stop political correctness in its tracks.”

Imagine lobbying for the ability to marry, and hearing one of the nation’s most prominent citizens dismissing the fight to end your sense of injustice and frustration as “political correctness”.

The government’s position is demeaning and disrespectful to all of us, the decision to conduct a plebiscite is a knee jerk reaction to cover up for the real inadequacies of our democratic process.

Yes, there are many other critical issues demanding the nation’s attention, and if we polled the people, SSM would not make the top of the list, but if a section of Australian society demand equity on their terms, like all social issues, they deserve to get a fair hearing and a timely decision.

For me personally, my love does not need government endorsement, my rights do, so lets all unite and fight for defined civil and human rights through a “Bill of Rights”, and let the Gay community be included in its definition.

Mark Aldridge.

COMPLYING FARM DIRECT AS A SHOPPING CENTER (initial proposal)

July 16, 2016

Farm direct Salisbury “merits argument”

STATEMENT OF SUPPORT

market and some cars, x trail 050

“Farm Direct community markets have been successfully operating in the Salisbury area for well over 3 years”.

The markets huge success is evidence in its community support and by how well it is supported by the Salisbury small business community, this is exaggerated by the very fact upon relocation to our new site at the Old Spot hotel, our old location behind PALS liqueur has been able to also rebuild and attract continued support.

In the Salisbury area alone, this represents hundreds of local jobs and increased employment opportunities, while delivering support services for a variety of local small businesses.

The recent legal fight to undermine our market and its development approvals, has been trade and competition based and nothing to do with development issues or safety concerns. Development law was never written with the intention to undermine competition, but rather to ensure any change of use is in line with community expectations, and Farm Direct has the majority support of the local community.

Our recently approved development application as “Merit use” ought not to be overlooked, as Community support is the founding basis of the word “merit” in development law and planning.

Farm Direct has a successful track record in the Salisbury area for over 3 years, and have proven our ability to operate on the current site without any adverse effect to the location or surrounding area. In fact we leave no lasting imprint on the site or the local environment at all.

The fact that development law and planning has overlooked stalls, markets and fetes in their definitions, allowing the recent redefining to include a stall in the definition of the word shop, is due to the fact community events were never considered developments, but rather events, events of a regular basis, have been a part of the city of Salisbury history since its inception.

The location of Farm Directs present Salisbury Height’s Market at the Old Spot hotel is on private land, land that’s primary use is retail based, the zoning of “Open Space” is based more on the adjacent river and walk ways/trails, than the area built to have its primary use to be that of a car park for retail and hotel trading.

Before I touch on the merits of our application in an area presently zoned “Open Space” now we are considered non-complying, I would like to compare the merit of our application with the city of Salisbury’s planning objectives.

Salisbury City has a range or initiatives that drive its development planning agenda, these are based around a range of ideals that work in with the State’s current planning objectives, they include;

Salisbury – Sustainable Futures – Sustainable Futures is a local response to current and future needs of the Salisbury community. It seeks to address the unique challenges of Salisbury by developing and benefiting from a range of opportunities and partnerships.

Farm Direct offers a range of opportunities for the North, that interact well with every aspect of Salisbury’s future and current objectives, through job creation, environmental benefits, health and exercise, affordable access to fresh local produce, innovation in primary production, attracting community participation and helping bring more income to the city.

Farm Direct not only leaves the area it uses clean, we also ensure we remove litter from the surrounding trails and river banks.

 

Key Direction (1) Shaping Our Future – Develop our City as prosperous and progressive by attracting and sustaining increased business investment and by providing accessible learning opportunities to grow and support a skilled workforce.

Farm Direct community market helps employ over 100 people directly and as we grow, so does the employment opportunities, especially as an avenue to support and nurture new small and micro business opportunities in the area.

 

Key Direction 2: Sustaining Our Environment – Become a Sustainable City in which its residents and businesses embrace sustainability best practices as part of their day-to-day lives and activities.

Farm Directs stall holders, are growing and producing to suit customer demand, helping alleviate waste, we operate in an environmentally sustainable manner, and any excess produce is used to help feed the most vulnerable in our community.

 

Key Direction 3: Salisbury the Living City – Maintain a strong and vibrant community by providing safe and supportive environments that promote opportunity, healthy and creative lifestyles.

Farm Direct promotes healthy lifestyles, by getting the local community out of their homes, walking around our market area and meeting their neighbours. We promote using the local open spaces, and eating healthy by promoting and offering local fresh affordable produce to the Salisbury community.

We utilising local cooking demonstrations, involve the local schools and community groups at our Midweek markets, and encouraging community participation.

 

Key Direction (4) Salisbury Success – Remain a high performing and innovative organisation that strives to achieve excellence in every area

Community and Farmers markets are a sought after community asset by most suburban and regional councils, most present locations where markets like ours operate are in similar if not the same zoning that Farm Direct presently operate.

A similar market to ours has just been complied in the Gawler Township, located in a carpark on “open space” zoning, in that case, the council themselves are in partnership with the market, offering free land use, secure contracts and investing over $60,000 of local rate payer’s moneys a year ensuring their market has the best facilities and marketing.

Farm Direct offers all the same benefits without any costs to the Salisbury council or there rate payers, offering excellence in our operations and facilities, and assisting in ensuring the supply of fresh affordable produce to those rate payers living on or below the poverty line.

Farm Direct community markets looks forward to assisting the Salisbury community and the council in its future directives at every level.

 

Salisbury’s Policy & Planning Stream (2)

Your policy; “Health and Wellbeing Based on the premise that wellbeing covers physical, emotional and financial aspects of life, encompasses social integration, respect for diversity, community participation and a safe, vibrant and creative environment.”

Farm Direct fulfils all the aims of this initiative, assisting in financial assistance to those on limited budgets, the promotion of social integration and community participation, we promote diversity through offering produce from a diverse range of cultural and ethnic backgrounds, in a vibrant and creative environment. This clearly supports our original merit based application, and fulfils the merits required to be considered an acceptable form of any non-complying application process for the proposed location.

 

Goal 2.3 – Health and Nutrition “City of Salisbury”

Your position; There is increasing awareness of the importance of primary health measures, nutrition education and access to affordable healthy food – plus regular physical exercise – to offset preventable conditions such as obesity.

While this is an issue across communities, there is a need to ensure that people experiencing financial disadvantage – plus those who have not had the benefit of health and nutrition education – have the opportunity to learn about and access ‘healthy’ food and health behaviours (such as exercise).

There is the opportunity to provide these opportunities to children and families via schools, community centres, sporting groups, recreation centres and other community facilities.

It is here I believe Farm Direct is the best initiative in the city of Salisbury to fulfil these criteria from a single bi weekly event, with any added cost to the city and its rate payers.

  1. We work with local schools to provide opportunities for them to further their education relating to healthy eating
  2. We offer excellent facilities to promote family and community activities, by getting family’s to come to our market do their shopping as a family and embrace the local parks, walking trails and play equipment
  3. Farm Direct offers free cooking classes, tasting, and healthy eating behaviour.
  4. We provide access to affordable healthy produce, and promote healthy eating in general.
  5. We get regular feedback both on site and on line from our customers that support these statements, from feeling healthier, losing weight, and even more so seeing their children embracing healthy food over fast food and processed sugars.

 

Farm Directs strategy is to offer assistance and support to local small business and primary production, while promoting healthy eating and sustainability.

  1. Support the health and safety of the community.
  2. Ensure the services and infrastructure we provide meet community needs.
  3. Facilitate information and communication opportunities.
  4. Ensure local community resources are accessible to every sector of the community.
  5. Promote increased civic participation in community and Council activities.
  6. Identify and actively support and promote the recreation and leisure needs of the community.
  7. Enhance learning and employment opportunities across our community.
  8. Strengthen and unite the local community.

 

 

THE PRINCIPLES OF DEVELOPMENT CONTROL FOR “OPEN SPACE AND RECREATIONAL AREAS, includes several sections that support our present market model;

I have highlighted in bold where we directly adhere to the current “Open Space” zoning regulations.

Farm Direct leaves a clean foot print; we account for a small minority use of the land, and fulfil a majority of the directives driving present development planning.

2 (a) Facilitate a range of formal and informal recreation activities

(b) Provide for the movement of pedestrians and cyclists

3 Open space should be designed to incorporate:

(a) pedestrian, cycle linkages to other open spaces, centres, schools and public transport nodes

(b) park furniture, shaded areas and resting places to enhance pedestrian comfort

(c) safe crossing points where pedestrian routes intersect the road network

(h) Opportunities to be active and participate in physical activity

  1. Buildings in open space, including structures and associated car parking areas, should be designed, located and of a scale that is unobtrusive and does not detract from the desired open space character.

11 Development in open space should:

(a) Be clustered where practical to ensure that the majority of the site remains open

13 Landscaping associated with open space and recreation areas should:

(a) Not compromise the drainage function of any drainage channel

(b) Provide shade and windbreaks along cyclist and pedestrian routes, around picnic and barbecue

areas and seating, and in car parking areas

(d) Enhance the visual amenity of the area and complement existing buildings

(e) Be designed and selected to minimise maintenance costs

14 Development of recreational activities in areas not zoned for that purpose should be compatible with surrounding activities.

15 Recreation facilities development should be sited and designed to minimise negative impacts on the amenity of the locality.

 

 

COMMUNITY PLAN acceptance

Objective 1.2 Build a local community that is proud of Salisbury

Objective 1.4 Create a vibrant and active, event-filled Council area

Objective 2.1 Physical and social infrastructure to match population growth

Objective 2.5 Manage growth through the real connection of people and places

Objective 2.6 Local economic activity to create local job opportunities and generate increased local wealth

Objective 3.7 Create a safe, community environment

Objective 5.1 Support and encourage community teamwork

Objective 5.4 Create and support community partnerships that contribute to the

Farm Direct is an asset to the City of Salisbury, a draw card that attracts many into the Salisbury area and compliments the many innovative directives of its host city.

If the only objections are those of a market competitive nature, there is no reason to deny the development application based on the markets merits.

Farm Direct is well supported by the local community, it is in line with council and state government initiatives and brings people into the area, and the community together.

Mark Aldridge

 

Photos below are of the Market during trading, and show our Wednesday market entertaining local school children in an attempt to educate on healthy eating.

 

FORMAL COMPLAINT TO THE ELECTORAL COMMISSIONER “Demanding a new election”

July 11, 2016

FORMAL COMPLAINT TO THE AUSTRALIAN ELECTORAL COMMISSIONER

 

Regarding the conduct and counting of the 2016 Federal election.

 

10th of July 2016

By email; Trudi.Fenton@aec.gov.au

Copy sent; Paul.Langtree@aec.gov.au

Dear Electoral Commissioners

Re; Formal Complaint

 

Formal petition link; https://www.change.org/p/australian-electoral-commission-australians-demanding-a-new-election-2016?recruiter=11899917&utm_source=share_petition&utm_medium=facebook&utm_campaign=share_facebook_responsive&utm_term=des-lg-share_petition-custom_msg&recuruit_context=fb_share_mention_control&fb_ref=Default

 

I am writing in response to numerous complaints regarding the conduct of the 2016 Federal election, complaints I have received from people across Australia which raise concerns in relation to the conduct the counting and the advice given to voters from electoral commission staff and the advice given by Centrelink on behalf of the AEC.

I would like to remind the commission of the legal precedent “Woodward V Sarsons” which enables a common-law argument to invalidate a general election if the conduct of the election strays too far from the legislative provisions, to enable it to be considered an election at law.

To date the many complaints I have received, concur with the many media reports that also expose a variety of conduct issues including but not restricted to;

  • People being turned away from polling booths without being allowed to vote due to a deficiency in ballot papers. (231. Right of elector to receive ballot paper)
  • People being asked to tick of their names, even though they were unable to cast a vote due to again an absence of ballot papers in numerous polling booth locations.
  • People in a variety of location being unable to vote due to a lack of access to polling booths and or mobile polling services.
  • People missing out on their vote due to irregularities in the maintenance of the electoral roll.
  • People being given unauthorised ballot papers. (missing the official marks required for formal acceptance) therefore deeming making valid votes informal under electoral law.
  • The opening of ballot boxes before the end of the voting period, causing all said ballot papers to be informal.
  • People being asked to hand ballot papers to polling workers because the ballot boxes were full, unacceptable under the electoral act.
  • People in remote communities missing out on voting because of polling booth closures and a lack or transport services.
  • ADF (Australian defence employees) missing out on their votes due to restrictions in mobile polling services
  • Complaints from enrolled voters undergoing hospitalisation missing out again due to mobile polling cutbacks and a lack of credible mobile polling services.
  • Postal ballot applications being delayed due to political interference with the application process.
  • People being provided with the wrong ballot papers for electorates outside of their areas and in some cases outside their state.
  • Ballot boxes not being correctly sealed as per the electoral act laws.
  • Ballot boxes unattended which had been ripped open to allow easy access.
  • Absentee voters missing out on their votes, due to a shortage of absentee ballot papers.
  • Counting and scrutiny issues being reported by polling booth staff and scrutineers.
  • Incorrect voting information being provided by polling booth staff and centre link workers to voters across the nation.
  • Voters being told they could not vote with a pen.
  • Voters arriving to find their names missing from the electoral rolls, then denied their right to vote.
  • Reports of missing ballot papers in the final count averaging 25% of the total vote cast.
  • Reports of counting irregularities in both houses.
  • Voter intention on all senate ballot papers being unable to be ascertained as a result of being provided wrong information about formal voting procedures.
  • Many candidates being nominated and contesting the election, that were allowed by the AEC to be nominated and contest the election even though at law they should have been declined by the AEC due to holding offices of the crown or having an allegiance to a foreign power.
  • Polling booth workers not asking the required questions before providing a ballot paper.
  • Media blackout laws were being ignored by several political parties
  • Postal workers exposing issues processing postal ballot papers due to the interception of applications by the Liberal party.
  • The issue of pre-poll and postal ballot papers to voters that did not meet the legislative criteria to be issued these services.
  • Issues exposed relating to security at polling booths.
  • The Major parties handling postal ballot applications, which were intercepted by their offices rather than the reply paid envelopes being addressed to the commission.

 

I therefore lodge a formal complaint and call for a full investigation into these issues, irregularities and the general handling of the election conduct.

(Questions as to why electoral laws were changed the day before the election are also being raised?)

 

  1. How many ballot papers were printed and how many have been accounted for?

 

1a; How many ballot papers were printed and have they all been accounted for?

 

  1. Why did the commission close hundreds of polling booths?

 

2a; how many polling booths were removed from service in comparison to the 2013 and 2010 elections?

 

  1. Why was the commission forced to utilise centre link voters to answer AEC enquiries and what training were they provided to those workers.

 

  1. What advice was recommended to polling workers in relation to the new senate voting laws?

 

  1. Is the AEC going to make a formal complaint to the Australian Communications and Media Authority, regarding the thousands of breaches of the media blackout laws?

 

7a; Does the commission believe that the breaches of these rules has affected the election outcome?

 

  1. How many postal ballot applications were handled by the major parties?

 

  1. Was it lawful for the Liberal party to intercept and open postal ballot applications before on sending them to the Electoral Commission?

 

  1. Why did polling booths run out of ballot papers, when voter attendance was down some 20 to 30%?

 

  1. Why some voters were not asked the required questions before receiving their ballot papers (229. Questions to be put to voter)

 

  1. How many voters were denied a ballot paper or their right to vote? (Section 231.  Ensures the right of elector to receive ballot paper)

 

  1. Why were how to vote papers being left in polling booth voting areas?

 

  1. Will the commission allow their employees to come forward with their complaints without taking legal action against them under their present employment contracts?

 

  1. How many voters were allowed to mark their names of as having voted, that were denied ballot papers?

 

  1. How many polling booths reported running out of senate ballot papers?

 

  1. How many polling booths reported running out of absentee ballot papers?

 

  1. How many polling booths closed early due to running out of ballot papers?

 

  1. How many hospitals were denied mobile polling services in 2016 compared to the 2013 and 2010 federal elections?

 

  1. How many nursing homes were removed from the usual mobile polling services?

 

  1. How many polling booths were closed down in comparison to 2013 and 2010?

 

  1. Did all the absentee and postal ballot applications in line with the legislative requirements?

 

  1. What is the commission position in the massive increase in informal votes?

 

  1. What is the Electoral position relating to the massive sudden increase in none attendance?

 

  1. Why were voters, in particular absentee voters given conflicting advice on voting formally?

 

  1. Do you personally believe the election conduct was in line with your personal expectations?

 

  1. How many voters deliberately missed out on their vote as a direct result of reduced voting/polling services?

 

  1. How much funding was cut to the AEC during this election process compared to 2013 and 2010.

 

  1. How many permanent positions were axed between 2013 and 2016.

 

  1. How many pre-poll/postal applicants applied for AEC services?

 

  1. What we’re polling booth staffs expectations when and if a voter spoiled a ballot paper?

 

  1. What as the extent of training provided to Centre link workers and casual polling staff?

 

  1. How many voters received incorrect ballot papers?

 

  1. How many ballot papers under scrutiny did not have the official mark?

 

  1. How many ballot boxes sustained damage?

 

  1. Will the commission be ignoring electoral law and counting senate and other ballots that do not have the required mark? (209A.   Official mark)

 

  1. How many ballot boxes were not correctly sealed and how many were opened and tampered with prior to the closing of the polls.

 

  1. Why did the commission excuse electoral advertising laws and black out times?

 

  1. What reason does the electoral commissioner give for the sudden rise in informal ballot papers?

 

  1. What reasons does the electoral commissioner give for the huge lack of attendance of around 3 million voters?

 

  1. Will those candidates whose names appeared on ballot papers, but were ineligible to run as a candidate still receive electoral funding?

 

38a will those same candidates preferences be passed on to other candidates where a how to vote was distributed?

 

  1. How many people registered for postal voting?

 

38a; how many of the applicants had a legal right to apply for a postal ballot under schedule          2 of the Electoral Act 1918

 

  1. How many applications or postal ballots were delivered too late to be counted?

 

  1. How many official and unofficial complaints were received by the AEC?

 

  1. Does the commission support a re-election process?

 

  1. What steps can the commissioner take to ensure the voters are aware of who is running in each seat, media reporting in my state only covered 3 parties, and even the how to vote lift outs in local papers excluded all others?

 

  1. Is the move to a position of electronic voting by the major parties a direct result of the

multitude of errors evident during the conduct of the 2016 process?

 

  1. With winning margins in some seats being below 100, are the tens of thousands of missing votes in each of those seats, enough to consider supporting a rerun of the election?

 

  1. Will there be a Petition by Electoral Commission to dispute the outcome of the election under section 357 of the electoral ACT 1918, as a result of the multitude of concerns raised and the deviation away from the legislative requirements of a general election process.

 

On behalf of Australian voters, I would hope the commission can see fit to answer these questions, and offer a full overview of the final conduct and voting facts.

As a federal candidate for the 2016 election I request answers to the questions asked where it is within my rights to ask as a candidate and enrolled voter.

*COMMONWEALTH ELECTORAL ACT 1918 – SECT 364 Real justice to be observed

I believe as an informed voter and experienced political candidate that the election process has deviated to far from the legislative provisions of a proper election process to be considered an election at law.

I therefore demand the commissioner issues a petition to dispute the election outcome, and formally requests that a new election be held, in which the process is restored to be in line with the correct procedures required of a general election process.

Mark Aldridge

P O Box 1073 Virginia SA 5120

Date of Birth 02/08/65

201 Taylors road Penfield Gardens

08 82847482 / 0403379500

aldridgemark@bigpond.com.

AUSTRALIA’S INDEPENDENTS DAY JULY 2 2016

June 28, 2016

AUSTRALIA’S INDEPENDENTS DAY JULY 2 2016

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This week you have a chance to change politics, you can address political mediocrity, not necessarily based on a massive choice of inspirational candidates, but by sending a strong message that we the people demand our voices are heard.

Taking away the power of the two party systems, is the only way we can bring about political and social change.

Before globalization, Australia was leading the world, we had the best health care, topping the list with 17 beds per thousand in our hospitals, we led the world in innovation, research, small business flourished so did manufacturing, we made everything, exported it, and when you brought Aussie made, you know it would last.

We were a proud nation leading on the world stage; we were the envy of the world.

We exported more than we purchased, which created jobs, security, and our nation prospered, we were in deed the lucky country.

We now we have around 2 beds per thousand in our hospitals, we sold of our medical patents, we undermine innovation, Industry has been pushed of shore taking our job security with it, all in the name of globalisation and free trade.

Since we opened up our nation to globalization we have lost more than our rights, our self-determination, our sovereignty, we have lost our way and our way of life and our place as one of the best nations on earth.

Out of touch politicians with no idea how to recover are now selling the farm so to speak, selling our primary industries, farms and water to countries that would never let us buy theirs, they are now told what to do by people we never elected, again under this new global agenda.

Our supposed representatives lost sight of our long term future, coming up with short term answers to long term problems, increase our population by immigration, borrowing money to send of shore to help others. When that money ran out, they sold of our infrastructure, ports, and power production not to find money for us, to appease agreements made with others, again people we do not meet or get to elect.

This election, most of the candidates not only back this agenda, they want to increase immigration, increase foreign aid, borrow more money, make selling the farms even easier, and do that by further reducing our services, our health care, our education and undermining our sovereignty.

England voted to restore its democracy, just as we should, but as you will see those who wish to dictate our way of life, those that want to engineer our society will really step up, and I would say in doing so they will expose themselves and their agenda.

We do not need free trade, trade deals what allow others to buy our farms yet won’t sell us theirs, and we don’t need to compete with those on $10 a week, because we never had to, we don’t need to buy our vehicles from overseas, we used to build and export ours to them, and we can build them again.

Don’t fall for the bullshit that globalization is good, or the only way forward.

We have to demand change now, we still have the know-how, the factories and the infrastructure to rebuild, we still own some farms and infrastructure, we can pay of our debt and buy back the farm, but it will take hard work and sacrifice, the same hard work and sacrifice that built this country in the first place.

We can ensure that sacrifice is shared with the corporate sector, by demanding they pay their fair share of the tax burden, by the re-introduction of tariff protections, and by abolishing any trade deals that disadvantage us as a nation.

We need to limit immigration, fix our trade deficit, restore protectionism, cut back foreign aid and get our back yard in order, and the last thing we need is foreign body’s, and dodgy trade deals telling us how to run our nation, because it is what has destroyed all the hard work of our forefathers in the first place.

The government and their Media mates have you believing all of this rubbish is good for you, and that people like me, that speak the truth are nutbags, but in your heart you know the truth.

Like the English BREXIT vote, we can take back that which is rightfully ours, our rights, our liberties and our freedoms, and regain the label of the lucky country, and then we can use that position to help those in need.

Not by sending them money, but providing the services they need.

The two party political systems have been written by the two parties’ to empower the two parties, they are nothing to do with democracy, in fact they work against democracy, the concept of a free and informed choice, against our sovereignty and our ability to determine our nation’s future and protect its peoples best interests.

Every term in government we give these people, in every country, is leading us further away from recovery; their election means less social services, less real jobs, increased selling of our strategic assets, farms and water. The further these parties lead us in a downward spiral, the harder it will become to rebuild.

All we have to do is deny them our vote, deny imported produce our money, and deny the media the power to educate us.

Be the change you want to see in this world, not just how you vote, but how you spend, and what you share on social media, and more than anything else, how you treat your fellow people.

Mark Aldridge Independent candidate for Makin……. A difference!

Independent calls for an overhaul of private job agencies.

June 13, 2016

 

Independent calls for an overhaul of private job agencies.

jobs

Recent government reports wish to give private job agencies control over the incomes of unemployed people.

Handing job agencies the power to dock the Centrelink payments of unemployed workers for crimes such as failing to sign a jobs plan on the spot or not updating their résumé, is more power than these agencies should be awarded.

As an employer on the other end of this problem, I have already endured issues when it comes to trialling a new staff member, where once I was supported and encouraged to increase my work force. These NGO’s are making it impossible to create casual work with a view to full time positions.

With the dole already $391 below the poverty line, for many unemployed workers, deductions to their income support will place them in severe financial distress.

I am already receiving reports from job seekers getting cut off from their payments for missing an appointment, even when that is because they have a job interview or have found a day’s work.

“By proposing that job agencies should be given new unprecedented powers to financially penalise unemployed workers, we are sending a clear message to the employment services industry that these tactics are acceptable”

“I would like to see an inquiry to address these issues and to ascertain how these agencies are preforming” and if they are not pulling their weight, just maybe we can invest our tax payer dollars more wisely.

I am hearing some of these agencies are putting casual workers through hell, where they should be concentrating on training people for those positions that are available.

Surely work for the dole, was not about endless interviews, or control of the unemployed by NGO’s, but via constructive opportunities and local community needs.

How can a genuine unemployed worker find a job, when they are spending their days appeasing private organisations, let alone ones that can control their lively hood in such a way?

The community needs genuine employment opportunities, and that is best achieved by offering innovative support services and funding solutions to local small business, local markets and industry.

 

Mark Aldridge, Independent Candidate for Makin.

INDEPENDENT CANDIDATE CALLS ON THE POLICE COMMISSIONER FOR A PUBLIC APOLOGY.

June 12, 2016

INDEPENDENT CANDIDATE CALLS ON THE POLICE COMMISSIONER FOR A PUBLIC APOLOGY.

 

Mark Aldridge Independent candidate for Makin calls on the South Australia Police Commissioner for a public apology.

While running in the 2013 Federal election, Mr Aldridge had his home raided, and endured a false arrest and detention on top of a host of improper conduct by SAPOL officers, which have been found to have occurred without any reasonable basis at law.

It destroyed my credibility as a federal election candidate for the seat of Wakefield in 2013, to such a degree I have had to change seats in the hope that the Makin electorate, where my good name may not have been so adversely tainted by the media coverage of my poor treatment at the time.

I am a law abiding citizen and a well-known community advocate, and I take the application of the law very seriously.

The Police ombudsman’s report on the matter which is backed by the police commissioner is of the view that I should seek recompense against the state for my treatment and illegal arrest and detention.

It is all good to consider compensation, but my good name has been brought into disrepute by SAPOL through their actions, so an official apology is well earned and long overdue.

It was not only the raid on my home, the false arrest and detention, but the continued harassment by a range of officers, that at the time made headline news, that has caused the most damage.

I pride myself in the good work I do for my community, and to think there are now people out there that think I am a criminal by way of my past treatment by SAPOL officers, that is an issue that needs to be addressed immediately.

Independent candidates are not awarded much in the way of media attention during election processes, so the last thing I needed during my campaign was coverage of an invalid raid and arrest.

My legal team will file a damages claim in the coming weeks, but I want my good name restored immediately.

I ensured the commissioner was well aware of my treatment at all times during this debacle, so he would be well aware of the treatment I endured, and ought to know it would have had an effect on my good name, because the report is clear as to that fact.

I supplied the commissioner with extensive evidence regarding the issue that was not considered during the Ombudsman’s investigation, so he will be well aware that even though the findings exonerated me, the whole truth is very damaging not just to my good name, but the good name and mental health of my family as a whole.

 

Mark Aldridge

Independent candidate for Makin.

08 82847482 / 0403379500

Independent candidate wants direct democracy phone app

June 6, 2016

“Handing Democracy back to the People”

Let every elector in Makin decide issues of importance, by utilising latest technology.

Let all the federal candidates consider change

Independent candidate Mark Aldridge running for the seat of Makin is determined to hand democracy back to the people.

Mark has fought for over a decade to help restore the rights and freedoms of voters, and working with other informed Independents has come up with a bold plan to give constituents their own voice in the parliamentary decisions.

Mr Aldridge said our elected representatives should represent we the people, not dictate to us.

If elected, he will work with experts to develop a mobile phone app that will let residents have their say directly on important issues and legislative reform.

“The little people need to take the power back,” Mr Aldridge said.

“Through this use of technology, I hope to engage the public and help make the residents of Makin the most politically involved electorate in Australia, and set an example for every other elected Member of Parliament to follow, if they dare to actually support real democracy.”

The idea would be to study any reform I am asked to vote on, send out an overview, and let the people decide what their will is, and I will present that to parliament.

For too long now, parliament has taken the position that we don’t understand, and in some cases we need not know, and that is not what democracy is meant to be about.

I will do my best to present both sides of any debate, offer my opinion and let the electorate decide, said Mark.

Obviously being elected by my electorate to represent them provides me with a mandate to do so, but given the fact only a percentage will have elected me, I see good reason to include them all when it comes to being their voice.

Most people these days are savvy when it comes to computer and mobile phone technology, so I believe the idea will be well received.

Mark Aldridge

 

Mark 3

Muslim immigration “Australia” what went wrong?

April 6, 2015

 

The Muslim debate

I have avoided any debate that brings with it division in the community, or belittles a person based on their race, the colour of their skin, or the religion they chose to follow, because I am not racist and my heart felt ideals regarding religious tolerance have always been fair and equitable.

The problem is every time I post an article that opens the door to such debate, even though I have posted a certain question, the debate ends up heading in a different direction.

In or about 2007, as leader of a political party at the time, I was asked to write a senate submission on Multiculturalism, while studying to write the submission, I read articles from all over the world, and even went as far as reading the Koran, in an attempt to ensure my article was an educated one.

The one thing I noticed when studying the facts and figures, particularly from countries like the UK, France, was that where multiculturalism had been a previous success, it was starting to fail, and in each case, that failure was being blamed on those practicing the Muslim religion.

Multiculturalism in today’s world is only a success with it is based on integration, where a person immigrates to a new country and embraces the values and benefits of that move, where they bring with them their culture and social values and work with the host nation to become a part of the social change that grows from within.

It fails when a person immigrates to a new country, yet does not wish to embrace that nation’s national identity, expecting the host nation to change its ways to suit their agenda.

Common-sense would dictate a person best not attempt to immigrate to a nation that has values or laws that go against their own beliefs, when this fact is ignored, problems arise, yet the problem is not the result of the actions of those immigrating, it is the actions of lack of, by the host nations decision makers.

Multiculturalism fails, when the host nation does not maintain a strong national identity, more so when they do not ensure that new arrivals to their shores understand that their nation’s laws, values and freedoms are not negotiable, other than the usual change through a secure, free and informed democratic process.

So here is my position, not as a politician, but as an Australian who by my actions have proven my love for my country and the long term future of its people.

I will say from the onset that I am well-travelled, I have a diverse groups of friends and followers from a large variety of back grounds, I have friends from all over the world that have shaped who I am, the one issue that rarely arises is each individuals religious beliefs, when relaxing with friends, issues of the heart or the bedroom are rarely the topic of discussion, even those I know call themselves Muslim, or those that adopt same sex partners for instance.

Today’s Australia was built on Christian values, our law, our system of democratic process, our education system, starting from the writing of our constitution onwards, and as much as I do not devote myself to the same Christian background, I do respect each individual’s personal choice, and I have enjoyed those idealisms that have grown from our foundations.

As Australia has grown, we have embraced multiculturalism, and we are a richer nation as a result, where those lines have been blurred in recent times, is when those that emigrate here, refuse to  show tolerance for our ways, yet expect us to continue to show tolerance for theirs.

I back the idea that our laws, our legislative progression, are guided by social change, what I cannot support is when our laws, our values and our national identity are being undermined in favour of a minority, or when we are expected to change our ways overnight to appease new arrivals on our shores.

One major example of this is our animal welfare laws, which have changed with the ideals and needs of society as a whole. We as a nation tried to adapt to entertain the religious ideals of the Muslim religion, by debating their position and integrating their ideals into our animal welfare standards. Yet now we see exemptions from those rules, exemptions that undermine the standards expected by our community in general, exemptions that allow non-stunned slaughter for instance, which also goes to undermine our democratic process.

Democracy is another, our nation is built on the premise that the people rule, (Demos-cratos) and we are free to elect our representatives, our system is far from perfect, but for any person wishing to migrate to our country, one would expect that they support the current system, and as with every law of the land, embrace them all, as one of the reasons we are the nation they have chosen to move their family’s to.

I for one would not chose to immigrate to a country that’s laws and social values were not in-line with my own, I certainly would not expect any nation to allow me entry, then to change to suit my ideals or to ignore the wishes of the majority.

The Muslim population of Australia is only a small minority, around 2%, even so. they do have every right to be involved in the social change and the future direction of our nation. The problem is that some of the stronger voices in the Muslim community expect more than their fair share of the input.

Their opposition to our Christian heritage is out of harmony with a fair go and any idea of equity, with pressure applied to retail stores and our education system that undermine existing Australians rights to celebrate their own religious beliefs.

If the position was reversed and we visited their country of origin, and demanded they stop celebrating their religious beliefs, there would be uproar, so one must wonder why we should be expected to change our ways, or be denied our religions freedoms in the very nation that was built around us.

Our nation has laws regarding animal welfare, we have laws that relate to equality, we have electoral laws, we have certain freedoms and liberties, that took years to shape, not one of these ought to be cast aside to suit a minority ever, yet here we are allowing these values to be undermined, so as to not offend a minority, and that is neither equitable or could be considered as a fair go for anyone involved.

Australia has a very strong national identity, so best our representatives remember that, we have rules, laws, certain freedoms, equalities and certain holidays and celebrations, these are not negotiable as they stand, other than by way of democratic review, so if any person decides to join us as a nation, best they understand this fact before they are allowed to stay.

The Muslim issue, if there really is one, is not the fault of those who immigrate here, it is the fault of our government, because in a democracy the majority rule, we are a democratic nation and we are a tolerant nation, and always have been. I have no problem what so ever with people immigrating here, regardless of their religious beliefs, what I do have a problem with is our government hearing the voice of the minority over the roar of the majority.

We all scream out for what we want in life, we try so hard to get our supposed representatives to listen to what we want, and the Muslims are no different, the problem is they are being heard over the majority, they are better funded through the income they receive from Halal certification, which is also a huge job creator for their own people and like most lobbyists they use everything at their disposal, including the race card.

The fact is, this perceived problem, like every problem this nation has, is the result of the slow erosion of our system of democracy, our representatives no longer hear nor fear we the people, they now only bow to the well-funded lobby groups and the corporations that fund them.

The only issue we have in this nation, is the fact our leaders and our representatives have lost their way, they are so far removed from those they ought to represent, they no longer have the ability to genuinely represent, because if they did, those immigrating here, would not expect more rights than those enjoyed by the majority.

Until we can restore our democratic system to a stage where the genuine free and informed will of the people reigns supreme, we will continue to lose the once fine label of “The Lucky country”

While our political parties have control of both electoral law, most of the media, and so much of the electoral process, change is not on the horizon, so it is here at the corner stone of society that change is most needed, when the people get their heads around this, and start voting in a more informed manner, only then will we again take a step in the right direction.

 

Mark Aldridge