Anarchy, Catholicism, Democracy, Greenery, Independence, Labor… Higgins!

Ten candidates have put their hands up for the Federal seat of Higgins:

    1. Stephen Murphy — Independent [“climate sceptic”]
    2. Fiona Patten — Australian Sex Party
    3. Kelly O’Dwyer — Liberal Party*
    4. Isaac Roberts — Liberal Democrats [“libertarian”]
    5. Clive Hamilton — Greens
    6. David Collyer — Australian Democrats
    7. Joseph Toscano — Independent [“anarchist”]
    8. Steve Raskovy — One Nation
    9. Peter Brohier — Independent
    10. John Mulholland — Democratic Labor Party


Making it a ding-dong battle for last.

See : Liberals draw third spot in Higgins, Steve Lillebuen, The Age [AAP], November 13, 2009.

The Moar You Know…

1. Stephen Murphy is a “climate-change skeptic”. In fact, he is a member of ‘The Climate Sceptics’. You can find out moar about Stephen at his blog. “I strongly believe that we have been mislead on the issue of climate change. I can find no credible scientific evidence supporting the claim that human CO2 emissions are causing dangerous global warming – can you?”

2. Fiona Patten of the Australian Sex Party also has a bone to pick — with Clive Hamilton. Not because of Hamilton’s concerns over global warming, but his ‘clean living’ and ‘nannying’ approach to the availability of sexually-explicit material (pornography): “He might have some great economic ideas but it is frightening that the Greens will endorse a candidate with such Nanny philosophies. When you consider that he joins another anti-sex campaigner endorsed by the Greens, Kathleen Maltzahn, we could be starting to see the rise of a morally conservative streak in the Greens as they increase their vote” (Clean Living Clive, fiona patten, October 25, 2009).

3. Kelly O’Dwyer is a Tory and a former adviser to Peter ‘Catch the Fire’ Costello. She is also the next Member for Higgins.

4. Isaac Roberts — Liberal Democrats. The Mystery Candidate. A Dark Horse.

5. Clive Hamilton — Greens. A well-known face, Hamilton will come second to O’Dwyer.

6. David Collyer — Australian Democrats. Yes, they still exist. “We are the voice of middle Australia, the party of moderation and progress,” Collyer said at the announcement of his candidacy.

7. ‘Uncle’ Joseph Toscano — of the Anarchist Media Institute / ‘Anarchist World This Week’ / Citizens For A Royal Commission into Corruption / Defend & Extend Medicare Group / Direct Democracy Not Parliamentary Rule (nee Vote Informal Today, Direct Democracy Tomorrow) / Libertarian Workers For A Self-Managed Society / People for Constitutional Human Rights / Reclaim the Radical Spirit of the Eureka Rebellion / Sedition Charter / Tunnerminnerwait and Maulboyheenner Commemoration Committee — is the go-to man for The Age‘s gossip column, and its favourite local anarchist. A one-man anarchist band, the indefatigable Doctor Toscano has been declaiming anarchy for over thirty years, and contested numerous elections, receiving up to 0.2% support in various tilts at the Federal Senate:


    1990 : 215
    1993 : 171
    1996 : 1,998
    1998 : 2,173
    2001 : 1,364
    2004 : 3,393
    2007 : 5,663

8. Steve Raskovy (OAM) is a 76-year-old anti-immigrant Hungarian migrant and former wrestler (1964 Tokyo Olympics) who lives in Ringwood. “Unfortunately Pauline Hanson made a few racist comments,” he said. “But it’s different now, our treasurer is Dutch, the state director is Italian” (Raskovy in for one more shot at seat, Bianca Carmona, Progress Leader, November 10, 2009).

One Nation is the tenth party Raskovy has joined, and he will also be failing to obtain a seat in the Federal Senate on behalf of One Nation at next year’s Federal election. He “joined One Nation because he knows the horrors of living under a totalitarian regime where only one way of thinking is tolerated [and] people can be jailed for speaking their views”.

9. Peter Brohier is a law-talking guy and a proponent of a ‘National Sea Highway’: “The National Sea Highway concept is that Tasmania should be connected to Victoria by a ferry-based surface travel option offering, all year, comprehensive National Highway equivalence for both people, vehicles and non-bulk freight.” Brohier is bursting with lots of other ideas to reform the state’s transport systems — but will the citizens of Higgins pay attention?

10. John Mulholland — Democratic Labor Party. A descendant of the party born in 1954 and dying — or at least being in extremely poor health — in 1978, the DLP was re-born/the zombie stumbles on in its home state of Victoria, and remains a home-away-from-home for right-wing Catholics and Protestants (see : Turning hard right: the battle for Right to Life, Michael Bachelard, The Age, August 23, 2009). Weirdly, the DLP website states that:

The DLP is not running a candidate for the Higgins By-election. Due to [an] anomaly in the registration of candidates with the AEC, Mr Dominic Farrell, the candidate pre-selected by the DLP executive to represent the DLP at the Higgins By-election[,] has been unable to stand. The DLP hopes to stand Mr Farrell at the next Federal election.

And yet, it moves!

See also : Clive Hamilton and Higgins & Green on The Greens in Higgins II, Larvatus Prodeo, October 26 & 29, 2009.

About @ndy

I live in Melbourne, Australia. I like anarchy. I don't like nazis. I enjoy eating pizza and drinking beer. I barrack for the greatest football team on Earth: Collingwood Magpies. The 2024 premiership's a cakewalk for the good old Collingwood.
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22 Responses to Anarchy, Catholicism, Democracy, Greenery, Independence, Labor… Higgins!

  1. @ndy says:

    No. V safe Liberal.

  2. Fiona Patten says:

    Yep it is safe but they are a little worried. I have already had a couple of conversations with the Liberal director looking for preferences even from the Sex Party.

    Hamilton’s position on a compulsory government internet filter should not be overlooked or forgiven.

  3. @ndy says:

    Web doesn’t belong to net libertarians, Clive Hamilton, The Australian, February 16, 2009.


    Q&A with The Greens’ Senator Scott Ludlam, ARN, October 19, 2009:

    ARN: Will the Greens support a compulsory ISP filter of any sort being placed on Australians?

    Senator Scott Ludlum: We’re going to need to wait and see what the Government actually comes up with, but I can’t see a scenario where we could actually support it. But the Government has not released its trial results yet. They’ve been sitting on those for a while. The Government has promised to take an evidence-based approach, whatever that means in this context. So I’m extremely sceptical that it can be made to work so that it would have any positive impact on the issue the Government says it’s trying to solve.

  4. Peter Brohier’s policies extend far past transport.
    They include a public think tank and lobby to get many issues easily dealt with by Canberra and a Commonwealth labour hire agency to hire out the services of the unemployed, on an optional basis. Also to canopy main roads with trees and have a major park established on crown land.

  5. Paul says:

    David Collyer (Australian Democrats) looks the goods. He’s exactly the kind of person an ALP could vote for (in the absence of a good ALP candidate let alone ANY candidate) without selling their soul. He lives near by and works near by (VCA I think). He’s politically savvy. A former senior adviser to Lyn Allison and national campaign manager for the Democrats, he surely has the goods over his inexperienced Liberal opponent.

    He’s running on local infrastructure issues- reducing noise pollution on the freeway and getting the overhead wires underground. The Democrats are big on choice and are socially progressive. They have a comprehensive history on the environment (I think I heard the Climate Emergency Network gave him their endorsement). Given he’s local, pro-green and moderate should make him an easy choice over his nearest green opponent.

  6. @ndy says:


    If voters voted on the basis of their independent assessment of individual candidates, an argument could be made for Paul (and the other candidates). Problem is, in the main, they do not. They vote for the party, and Higgins is a safe Liberal seat. As I see it (and with apologies to the other candidates), the main question will be: in losing to O’Dwyer, how many votes will Hamilton get, given a) widespread, cross-class concern over global warming/cllimate change and b) despite the fact that he’s been parachuted into the seat?

  7. linda says:

    I’m banking on Clive after the ascent of The Mad Monk, O’Dwyer should be feeling some rapid climate change.

  8. @ndy says:

    The Mad Monk’s elevation to Leader, combined with the defeat of the ETS in the Senate, will hardly endear him or the Coalition to the voting public, but this, it appears, is the gamble that the right-wing reactionaries within the party are willing to take. As for Higgins, it’s still a shoe-in for O’Dwyer: the real penalties for the Coalition will only be felt in the marginal seats, not the Tory heartlands.

  9. Clinton Gale says:

    So Fiona believes Clive Frog has “great economic ideas.” It’s nice to know where these single-issue parties stand on other matters.
    Personally I like the look of the LDP. So much so I’m a member and ran in the last federal election for them. A party that believes in the philosophical principles set forth by great minds such as Thomas Jefferson, John Locke and Adam Smith, how refreshing.

  10. Ross says:

    I’m inclined to agree with the comment “Paul” made above. I’d be voting for the Liberals’ – as I always have. But their “Abbott face” this week is the final straw. My vote’s going to the Democrats. Greens are too far left, Clive Hamilton would make a good Lennonist. The others don’t appeal politically – though Ms Patten appeals in other ways. 🙂 The best medicine for Kelly and her party is a protest. At least the Democrats aren’t going to do anything crazy or nutty like Clive or some of the others. Besides, they at lest negotiated things. I’ll send my prefs via them to the Liberals anyway on my card. All I’ve seen the Greens do is vote “No” and the Libs – the monk is a disaster.

  11. @ndy says:


    If government is so bad, why not abolish it? (PS. Congratulations on your 210 votes… it’s a long way to the shop if ya wanna sausage roll.)


    So the Democrats are the new liberals?

  12. Clinton Gale says:

    Thanks, @ndy.
    210 wasn’t bad considering we didn’t put much effort into Bendigo. I did a few interviews over the phone and via email. We focused all our power on Ringwood (well, the electorate that Ringwood is in). But this isn’t about me or the past.
    Kelly has stated she’s on the ETS side of the Libs. So we have on offer a non-ETS candidate with true liberal* values. Not sure how Higgins will take our socially radical ideas of gay marriage and decriminalization of victim-less crimes but they should soak up our laissez-faire approach to economics. If only we can get these ideas out there to them.
    As to your idea of abolishing government. We are of the belief that small government with limited power in order to protect the private citizen/individual against the power of mobs. Be they a mob of government or those who wish to initiate force in order to achieve their gains.

    *As opposed to the Lib’s mixture of conservative freedom.

  13. @ndy says:


    By Ringwood, I take it you mean Deakin? There, the LDP (Nick Stevenson) got 586 votes (0.7%). Was there any reason the LDP (in Victoria) concentrated on Deakin?

    Re O’Dwyer and climate stuff: I dunno. She’s made noises but

    [Hamilton] said the Liberal candidate, Kelly O’Dwyer, encapsulates the Liberal rift on climate because she ”claims to be a believer in human-induced global warming”, yet has not given a detailed account of her stance. The Greens have used the fact that the prominent climate sceptic Hugh Morgan, a former mining magnate and founder of the denialist Lavoisier Group, has endorsed Ms O’Dwyer on campaign material.

    She also failed to attend a recent, local forum on the subject, and has been reported as stating that voters she has spoken to while out kissing babies are mostly interested in ‘local’ issues, not all that ‘global’ stuff. Given the above, given the assumption of leadership by The Mad Monk, and given the Liberals’ opposition to the ETS thingo, I think it reasonable to assume that it’s at least possible that her position on climate change is a matter of whichever way the wind blows.

    Inre the response of voters in Higgins to the LDP’s policies on gay marriage et cetera, I doubt (as you suggest) that they’re even aware of them. But I wouldn’t describe these policies as being especially ‘radical’, as in reality these are solidly liberal positions, and the term Liberal is a misapplication when it comes to the party of that name.

    Re abolishing government: I understand the LDP’s position. But there are other approaches. For example, if public utilities may be privatised — that is, if there are excellent reasons for doing so — then why not armies? That is, why not apply market mechanisms to the distribution of violence? If ‘the market’ is indeed a fundamentally fair means of distributing wealth-making, why not war-making too?

  14. THR says:

    If ‘the market’ is indeed a fundamentally fair means of distributing wealth-making, why not war-making too?

    I can assure you that some of the more crackpot members of the LDP would take your question as being not merely rhetorical. This crowd has advanced some ‘anarcho-capitalist’ arguments in favour of private police and army. The arguments are very poor, of course, but that doesn’t mean they don’t try them on. They exhibit similar symptomatology with respect to services that are currently publically funded. Officially, they’d prefer a market based system (with vouchers) to deal with health, education, and all the rest. But give them a bit of nudging, and they’re quite happy to advocate for entirely private roads, and to consider any tax a blight on great Randian poet-warriors like Kerry Packer.

    Vote LDP if you like the geeky apologists for the rich.

  15. @ndy says:

    I think that the LDP’s policy on social welfare is brilliant in its simplicity:

    “The LDP supports replacing all current welfare with a negative income tax that provides a basic standard of living and assistance to the working poor.”

    Or: get a job. And if you can’t get a job, or find a charity willing to feed you, starve.

    I kinda doubt that the LDP is cognisant of the old saying that social welfare is a form of fire insurance for the rich.

  16. THR says:

    Some of these guys honestly believe that they are the true heirs of the anarchist (or ‘anarcho-capitalist’) tradition. As if Proudhon, Bakunin and Chomsky were merely agitating for relaxed gun laws and flat taxes. As if liberty comes in the form of a privatised postal service. Putting aside the politics, there’s a massive ethical and intellectual failure here. Sorry Clinton.

  17. @ndy says:

    Yeah… kinda. The LDP cites Adam Smith, John Stuart Mill, Milton Friedman, Lao Tzu(!), Ayn Rand, Friedrich Hayek and Thomas Jefferson (“The Greatest Classical Liberals Of History”) as their main, philosophical inspiration. But yeah, various fruitloops have claimed a love of ‘markets’ to be ‘anarchist’ — and by doing so demonstrated a failure to understand either. Leaving aside the fact that the term ‘libertarian’ was originally adopted by immigrant anarchists in the US in the late 1800s — and was employed by some European anarchists in their publications in order to avoid the censor — modern ‘libertarians’ are almost exclusively drawn from, and find their clearest resonance in, the Anglosphere; they embody what used to be called an ‘idealist’ (as opposed to ‘materialist’) approach to the social sciences: one in which historical and social understandings of politics (and especially political economy) have collapsed into a black hole.

    Probably explains why they attract so many commerce students.

  18. Clinton Gale says:

    Geeky apologists for the rich? We prefer the term “vicious intellectuals” with a sound moral backing for capitalism (which has nothing to do with massive credit expansion).

    There’re many points I could address in the above comments but I’m not here as the archangel of “greedy libertarianism” and to defend it’s merits. I just saw Patten and Brohier got their 2 cents in and thought I’d state the LDP’s position.

    So I don’t wish to make a debate out of this, I’ll just add a few things to the current discussion.

    * The LDP welcomes moderate libertarians, classical liberals, anarcho-capitalists and everyone in-between. Our first goal isn’t the abstraction of a libertarian utopia. It’s about getting the other parties to notice the public support our ideas so then the other parties can steal them and claim them as their own. (We did Deakin cuz it was marginal I believe.)
    * Anarcho-capitalists: Our bible of this is Rothbard’s For a New Liberty (you can read it at I’m half way though it and personally I find his idea of a private court system a little far out. However the private army idea sounds good. War doesn’t make profit. War is a lose-lose situation. This is different to Rand’s idea that a moral government must protect individual rights. She believes from this basis, the moral government is involved in running the courts and the coppers.
    * I believe you guys hold Rand/Rothbard in the same esteem we hold Gnome Chumpski. Very little. Some of his antiwar stuff is ok.
    * You really need to be an optimist and believe that humans will do good to each other when left to their own devices to grasp the freedom lover’s ideal.

    Thanks for letting people from all sides of the political fence post here @ndy and for fixing my typo. It reflects well on your character. Btw, I see you like TISM. There’s a TISM fan bbq on tomorrow around the Murrumbeena area. It’s event on Facechook and maybe some info on tismforumer11. I’ll bring some snags and voluntarily share them with others 😀

  19. dj says:

    Most people think Ayn Rand was insane, largely because she did a very good impression of being so.

    Many indigenous peoples around the world have met private armies (not to mention state armies acting as proxy private armies for corporate camouflage)…for some strange reason they don’t like them.

  20. @ndy says:


    Ayn Rand = Ayn Rand.

    One woman. One movement. One head. One destiny.

    There is nothing more to be said.

    Indigenous peoples don’t dig private armies? That merely demonstrates their primitive nature.


    Geeky apologists for the rich? Fairly apposite, in my humble opinion. Of course, I’d prefer it if you came here after donning your plus-5 Cloak of The Archangel of Greedy Libertarianism before defending the LDP’s merits — but that’s your call, not mine.

    It’s a free blogosphere, after all.

    * The LDP as a vehicle for libertarian agit-prop? Fair enough. Everyone needs a hobby.
    * Anarcho-capitalism has been nailed to the cross of reality many times. An anarchist critique is encapsulated in The Anarchist FAQ. Fwiw, Ulrike Heider’s Anarchism: Left, Right, and Green (City Lights, 1994) contains a chapter on — and includes an interview with — Mr. Libertarian. Anyway, by liberty, libertarians really mean property, which is everything, and should be. Private courts, private armies, private privates: the basis of libertarian morality seems indistinguishable from a kind of amorality, in which the ‘strong’ triumph over the ‘weak’: If you want a picture of the libertarian future, imagine a boot stamping on a human face— forever—and to the applause of the peanut gallery (who, naturally, are happy to pay for the privilege).
    * Gnome Chumpsky? I think you mean Nim Chimpsky, surely. Funnily enough, I’m writing a post about Chomsky The Capitalist Pig at the moment.
    * I don’t see why the LDP doesn’t just buy votes. Oh wait: you need money for that.

    And remember Clinton: libertarianism is only as good as its Mistral fans.

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