Drinkers discuss elections

Issue 

BY DANIEL JARDINE

SYDNEY — Eighty people turned up to the Gaelic Club on October 19 for a Politics in the Pub discussion on the November 10 election.

Greens senate candidate John Key told the meeting that the Greens face particular problems in keeping their principles when they participate in government, using Tasmania and Germany as examples. Discussing the German Greens he argued that "they've gone off track a little".

John Sutton, assistant national secretary of the Construction, Forestry, Mining and Energy Union, told the meeting that while the CFMEU don't consider the ALP in any way left, the most important thing is to get rid of the Liberal Party. That is why, Sutton argued, the union's coal division is giving $500,000 to the ALP and the construction division is giving $180,000. The construction division is also giving $5000 to two minor parties.

Rod Noble from the Progressive Labor Party argued that the main problem in Australia is economic rationalism. Noble was the only speaker at the meeting who failed to mention the war in Afghanistan.

The Communist Party of Australia's Warren Smith spoke about the relevance of the Communist Manifesto today.

Lisa Macdonald, the Socialist Alliance candidate for the seat of Reid, stated that while the alliance is the "new kid on the block" it was providing a real opposition to war and racism on the streets. According to Macdonald, election campaigning can provide an anti-war voice while people are in a mood to listen.