Moved Mountains

Banner - Mt Trio, Stirling Range National Park, Western Australia - (c) 2007

Friday, July 27, 2007

Meet the Wannabees

This photo is from the "meet the candidates" forum I hosted at the local country club on Tuesday night on behalf of the Binningup Beach Christian Fellowship and the community.

We had 4 candidates come along, Noel Brunning (a local TV news anchor and former work mate of mine from my TV days) who is running as an independant, John Lewis for the Christian Democratic Party, Peter MacFarlane from the Australian Labor party and Rob Olver (a mate of mine from way, way back) who is a senate candidate for the Australian Democrats.

Unfortunately the Liberal candidate, Nola Marino, who is probably the best bet on winning the election wasn't real interested in getting involved and didn't get back to me when asked to provide a couple of dates. After a few emails and attempted telephone contact she informed me the date we eventually fixed was no good for her and she wouldn't be coming! This made it into the paper and I received a heap of phone calls from people upset that she wasn't going to be involved. I told them to ring her and tell her, not me!

The turn out wasn't huge, about 30 in all, but the night went well.

The idea behind it (stolen from the ACL who did something similar in Bunbury at the last state election) was to give the locals an opportunity to hear from the "horses mouth" on issues that were pertinent to our community and part of the world. Helping make an informed decision when it comes to the ballot box.

The main topics of interest included our involvement in the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, environmental issues (particularly enviro-friendly industry and energy solutions) and the big problem we have with drugs (particularly a nasty little number called ice) in the South West. I invited the aspiring pollies to come and take a look at the drug and alcohol program I run for Mission Australia so they could get a bit of an idea of some of the stuff that is being done locally to work with drug affected kids.

So there's another idea for increasing the relevance of the church in the local community and helping to break down some of those barriers that exist. It also got us in 4 newspapers - nothing like free publicity! ;)


Anonymous said...

I'd like to thank you for putting on the "meet the candidates" night. This was a great night and though there were only about 30 people there I believe a very informative night was had by all. It use to be considered normal to have such nights and aspiring Pollies and even the elected member would do things like hire a truck and stand on the flat deck, outside the local deli or pub and do his thing and then answer questions from the locals. These days most of the time the candidates are so tightly managed that you don't really know much about them or what they stand for because it all gets reduced to press releases and door stop sound bites. Thanks again Andrew, I'm glad I went, it was well worth it.
Super Shane.

The Creature said...

Thanks Shane! I was glad you could make it along and for your input in organising it and your tough questions of the candidates on the night!