Moving along as we approaching the Baltic Sea, we have Mark Dickenson, a candidate with both a GoFundMe page, a dubiously-titled Facebook page (Dicko for Senate is not the handle I would have chosen), and a rather strangely titled blog (is he a Terry Pratchet fan, perhaps?). Clearly a man with a lot to say, and a slightly odd sense of humour.
Mr Dickenson has a press release about his campaign, titled ‘A political candidate with a social conscience‘, that begins as follows:
In an unprecedented step to regain voter confidence, an aspiring Senate candidate named Mark Dickenson is engaging the community as never before.
With a growing presence on social media and other media platforms, he actively engages his audience and is unafraid to answer the hard questions.
I’m not quite sure why I find this so hilarious, but it gives me a giggle every time I read it. There is a certain grandiosity of language that reminds me of some of the more unfortunately-worded grant applications I have read at work. But, hilarity aside, he does seem to want to do some good things, and there is a certain simplicity when he says ‘I’m one of you, not one of them [the politicians]’ that resonates with me even when I am tired and sarcastic.
Here’s a bit from his FaceBook page:
I’d just like to say a few words to give people a bit of insight into what motivates me. I am saddened by the way people are prepared to put personal interest in front of human interest. The relentless pursuit of growth at any cost is in my eyes both reckless & often has a huge human cost. I think we can probably do the growth thing better. We can probably do it without the damage to society. We can do it without the cruelty to nature. Our planet isn’t infinite. Corporations don’t seem to care. We already have locations in Australia where the water isn’t safe for humans or animals. Animals & wildlife cannot graze with safety. Our government uses our taxes to fund these ventures via mining subsidies. What of future generations? Our planet & our resources are finite as is life in all forms.
Mr Dickenson does not have a policy page as such, but he tells us that he is particularly concerned with ‘issues that affect everyday Australians’, and names health and support services for the sick (including the mentally ill) and disabled, and help for domestic violence victims as key areas. He also seems quite concerned about tax evasion by big business and politicians, and is worried about the imbalance of workplace laws in favour of employers, and the increase in casualisation of Australia’s workforce.
These are all important things, but I would like to see something a little more concrete on the policy side. He doesn’t say anything about immigration, asylum seekers, or marriage equality, and is, I think, principally focused on the socioeconomic side of things. I’d still like to see detailed policies. He intends to be interactive with his consituents and promises to both listen and adjust his own views when convinced by public opinion. This could be very good or very dangerous, depending on how much you trust the Australian public. But I like it that he wants ‘people to have a greater role in their own destiny’.
So yet again, a basically progressive candidate who wants to make a more equal society, and someone who is going to get fairly good billing on my Senate voting list. Three good candidates in a row – it’s bizarre! I can’t help feeling that this cannot possibly last…