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The Big Switch continues to deny the Socialist Alliance its environment credentials

by Dave Riley

It has been reported here before that the Big Switch had a exclusionist policy for its election monitoring that didn't include parties outside the mainstream. After a bit of protest that may have changed a little --although the extent of that change is confusing (as the whole site is confusing).

So consciously excluding the Socialist Alliance from the site was an issue first up.The core attempt has been to deny the SA its environment credentials despite its high ratings elsewhere.

(To be fair, the BigSwitch is not alone in that as the SA's Climate Change Charter (pdf) is the most radical on offer at this election. So that while the SA's policy platform may be the best response to the Climate Change emergency -- with the sharpest targets and the like -- a section of the more mainstream environment movement wants to obscure the fact that that is the case.)

Then we get this fracas so that on the week of Walk Against Warming (which the SA is building actively around the country) BigSwitch pulls the SA off the site as a tech fix!

(Needless to say, no one requested that the SA be removed from the site!)
Email to Tricia Phelan
Dear Tricia
It has come to our attention that the big Switches Rating of Socialist Alliance's policy on Climate Change is 0 out of 5 which is incorrect. The Big Switch gave one of our candidates (Tim Kirschler) a rating of 5 which should apply to Socialist Alliance as a whole. Could you please adjust this BEFORE the Walk against Warming as people will be checking out the website and be given incorrect information

Margarita Windisch
Victorian Socialist Alliance SenateCandidate
To which Tricia Phelan has responded today:
Thanks for your email Margarita.

We have removed the SA from our site, as requested by the party,(!!!-DR) whilst this gets sorted out. The problem is that party ratings work in a different way to candidate ratings, and our site is technically unable to do what we need it to do. We are working on rectifying this asap.

All the best

While The Big Switch is a simply awful site to navigate around, running web pages for the coalition that backs Big Switch isn't rocket science and given the long standing exclusionist approach of The Big Switch I urge all readers to protest the situation by email to Tricia Phelan at campaign@thebigswitch.org.au.

So that due process is followed in this matter.

And let's hope that BigSwitch can rectify this problem real soon...

4 Com:

Claire | November 09, 2007

The Big Switch also have a policy of excluding parties that haven't already got sitting members, and exclude Senate candidates altogether, apparently due to "limited capacity". This hardly gives the voters a clear picture of what's out there, such as the Climate Change Coalition - you would have thought The Big Switch with their agenda would be keen to let people know about the CCC, and about your lot too. Pretty disappointing...

Dave Riley | November 09, 2007

More from Tricia:

Hi Terry - I assure you, I read all emails I receive. I am utilizing a similar response to all relevant emails because I am receiving so many of them, and replying is taking up a significant amount of time - time I am trying to use to rectify the problem.

The problem is a technical one. We made a decision, due to a lack of capacity, to only rate parties that have an existing member in the Lower or Upper House. We also advised that all andidates, regardless of party, could complete our survey and their results would be displayed on The Big Switch site. Unfortunately, the way the site was built, means that when I upload a candidate response it automatically
gives the party a rating of zero. I am trying my best to rectify this problem, and will do so as soon as I can.

All the best


Zane | November 09, 2007

To: Tricia Phelan

Ok but I still don't understand why you would have us on your website with a zero rating.
Thats not a 'discrepancy', its actually saying we don't care about climate change, or have retrograde policies, which is just plain false.
You clearly havent read our policies; there is no way we rate a zero...

If we weren't on your website, that would be more understandable- but we are on your website -as the worst party!

I hope you can see why this is of concern.

I sincerely hope you can change this before sunday so that there are not thousands of people going to the big switch and getting the idea in their head that the socialist alliance have terrible climate policy.


Zane Alcorn
Socialist Alliance candidate for Wills
co-author of the Socialist Alliance Climate Change Charter

On Nov 9, 2007 8:19 AM, Tricia Phelan < tricia.phelan@...> wrote:

Hi Zane,

We're in the process of reviewing this right now. It's a different process reviewing the parties v the individuals, hence the discrepancy.

Thanks for getting in touch.

All the best,


Niels | November 09, 2007

Dear Tricia Phelan & The Big Switch Party Ratings,

Thank you very much for The Big Switch pages about climate change.

After careful analysis in research on international economic realities 30 years ago it was necessary to conclude, that big scale industry, of ecological reasons alone, could not be a world model for production. If the level of industrialization (30 years ago) would lead to a climatologic catastrophe, then an industrialization of the world for sure will destroy the life system of the Earth. In spite of any invented means of environmental protection, that conclusion will not change - Now the situation is worse.

In Australia to day, among the parties with ratings, only the policy of Socialist Alliance can satisfy the conditions of economic and social sustainability. Then it’s not possible with a score 0 out of 5, when relative to the score of the other parties it should be 5+.

Please, study the Climate Change Charter, which was made after decisions of policy in direct democratic processes, and decisions taken in open forums


http://www.socialist-alliance.org/resources/SA_climate_change_charter_withrefs.pdf http://socialistalliance.freeforums.org/

The 10 Point Plan etc.

The policies of The Greens and Australian Democrats is not realistic, since both rely on new liberal market forces, which inherently & irresistibly demand economic growth leading to monopolies and undemocratic decisions in the different sectors of society.

What Women Want, not rated, may be a good possibility, though this political party did not yet document, how to achieve sustainable production?

Looking forward to renewed ratings before the weekend Walks

Sincerely yours

Niels Dalgaard

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