When Australia was newly federated the Labor Party shared the most policy with the Deakinist Liberal Party. They formed alliances in the early days even. However, the first Labor Parliamentarians acted like the wheeling dealing politicians of old and were quickly wedged or maneuvered out of parliament by the other parties and politicians.
As a result the Labor Party developed the pledge whereby Labor politicians would vote the same way as the Labor party executive determined. This changed Australian politics entirely as Labor was now a voting bloc. Judith Brett writes
The insurmountable barrier between the Deakinite Liberals and the Labor Party was not Labor's policies not its attitude toward the state, but the nature of the party's organization: the demands which it made on its members to subordinate their own views and judgements to the collective will of the party and the implications this had for parliamentary government.
The problems Labor's organisation posed for the Liberals was particularly apparent in Labor's hostility to alliances. Labor simply refused to play the parliamentary game as it had hitherto been played, and parliamentary leaders found themselves stalled at every turn as they tried to put together workable majorities in the usual way.
This voting as a bloc in the way the party executive requires is known as the pledge and has led to Australian politics being dominated by absolute party discipline. The conscience vote - which Labor does not allow - is the rarity and exception. The horse trading that the American Congress would do where party dissent was tolerated is unheard of in Australia. It is becoming rare in the United States too though. James Fallows commented that in an overhead conversation in Congress
"GOP member: 'I'd like this in the bill.'
"Dem member response: 'If we put it in, will you vote for the bill?'
"GOP member: 'You know I can't vote for the bill.'
"Dem member: 'Then why should we put it in the bill?'
While the Republican Party only has enough votes for a filibuster in the Senate in order to stop bills coming up for debate, that is a more a convention than a constitutional or legislated rule. But it does seem to show that the Republican Party is able to maintain party discipline - I am not sure where from though; there is no Executive in power and I don't see the US party structures outside of Congress as that strong. The recent purity test was ignored for instance. So I am not sure where it is coming from.
More A speech
by Petro Georgiou describes the history of the pledge.
Cyclical link to John Barrdear who argues that it is fund raising
More Reading on Us politics
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Most Popular Restaurants in Phoenix
Phoenix Eats Out
is the restaurant review site for Phoenix
and Old Town Scottsdale
which lists the modernist and contemporary restaurants, taverns and bars in the greater Phoenix area.
This is the list of the most popular restaurants pages from phoenixeatsout.com that have been viewed the most;
My personal favourite restaurants in Phoenix are AZ88
, Humble Pie
, Orange Table
, The Vig
and others coming close behind. View the complete list with the photo-journalistic style images on phoenixeatsout.com
Most Popular Hikes in Arizona
Arizona is an outdoor state and has lots of hiking in the city and around the state. Phoenix is unusual for most cities in having several large mountains in the center of the city with great hiking. Anyone who comes to Phoenix has to do the Echo Canyon trail on Camelback
and the Summit Hike on Squaw Peak
or Piesta Peak. The views of the city, suburbs and surrounding mountains are wonderful from Camelback and Piesta Peak.
For more experienced hikers there is the McDowell Mountains in North Scottsdale that has several difficult and strenuous hikes in Tom's Thumb
and Bell Pass
. Alternatively, you can hike the highest mountain in Arizona. At 12,600 feet Humphrey's Peak
is a long and difficult hike.
Alternate Australian Constitutions
Between 2004 and 2009 this site, southsearepublic.org
, was a constitutional blog based on scoop which focused on Australian and global constitutional issues.
One of the strongest aspects of it was the development of constitutions by those involved in the blog. These constitutions are the outcome:
The constitutions were built using principles from Montesquieu's separation of powers, the enlightnment's universal political rights and the ancient Athenian technology of sortition and choice by lot.
Archives For South Sea Republic
South Sea Republic started in 2004 as an Australian constitutional blog in 2004 based on scoop software. It was an immigrative outgrowth of Kuro5hin. The archives for each year since then;
The articles are ordered by views.
Who Is Cam Riley
I am an Australian living in the United States as a permanent resident.
I am a software developer by trade and mostly work in Java and jump between middleware and front end.
I originally worked in the New York area of the United States in telecommunications before moving to Washington DC and
working in a mix of telecommunications, energy and ITS. I started my own software company before heading out to
Arizona and working with Shutterfly. Since then I have joined a startup in the Phoenix area and am thoroughly enjoying myself.
I do a lot of photography which I post on this website, but also on flickr. I have a photo-journalistic website which lists
the modernist and contemporary restaurants in phoenix. I have a site on the Australian Flying Corps [AFC]
which has been around since the 1990s and which I unfortunately
lost the .org URL to during a life event; however, it is under the www.australianflyingcorps.com
The AFC website has gone through several iterations since the 90s and the two most recent are Australian Flying Corps Archives(2004-2002)
Australian Flying Corps Archives(2002-1999)
which are good places to start.
Websites Worth Reading
Websites of friends, colleagues and of interest;