Transparency – an idea for Joondalup

I have to admit it, but I know probably as much as what happens in council meetings as the majority of the rest of you.  I’m sure that most of it is pretty dull, but given it affects our City, wouldn’t it be nice to get at least some information about what has taken place?

Here is the other farce.  Candidates for council, like myself, are allowed precisely 150 words to make our pitch.  Not one word more.  Its a bit of a tough ask to give electors a chance to work out who will provide decent service from that type, and I suspect more than favours the incumbent should they choose to run again.

So if people want to know more about me, here is the link to my LinkedIn page.  It gives you a bit of background to my career and the skills I can bring to the job.  On the personal front, I’m 20 years married with three teenage daughters.  I’m an atheist, but I was brought up in a Scottish Episcopal household (very similar to the Anglican church), and still hold the key value of treating others like you wish to be treated.

What about politics?  Well, if you’d be reading my social media postings over the last 6 years, it would be remarkably easy to get the impression that I was on the left of politics.  Not so – at the 2010 elections I voted for Dr Mal Washer.  However, I am not, and never have been a fan of Mr Abbott, whose divisive, pugilistic approach do not sit well with me.  Good policy needs broad support.  When politicians blame the opposition, the senate, the electorate, the markets, the media – indeed anyone but themselves – then I admit to getting more than a little annoyed!  The latest tirades about not talking down the economy, when he spent three years doing exactly that, are to me unforgivable.  Thankfully, as of yesterday, he is no longer PM, and hopefully a bit of sanity will prevail and our country can get back on track.

At council level, politics should not really feature.  This really shouldn’t be a political competition, and if you read the rest of this website, you’ll realise that personally I’d like all political parties banned!  My voting choice has always been the most capable candidate, the one who appears to sees their role as one of service, rather than ambition.  Mal Washer is a great example.  He would always reply when contacted, and stood up for what he believed in. His is an example I’d like to follow.

And if I do get elected, I plan to share with anyone who is interested what I’m up to, and what I’ve voted on and why.  I personally think the electorate should have more access to what goes on in their name. They may choose to ignore it, but if they want to know who said what or voted for what, then I think we have a right to know.  It also stops any cronyism, or dodgy deals.

Finally, you won’t see any leaflets or other junk mail coming through your door.  My campaign is going to be completely on-line, as much as an experiment as anything else, to see if “grass roots” campaigning can be carried out electronically. I’m a great believer in ideas, innovation, and working with others to build consensual solutions, and I’m posting these up on this website to give you an idea of what I hope to be able to offer.  If you like what you see, I encourage you to tell your neighbours, particularly if they live in Joondalup Central Ward (that’s Kallaroo, Craigie, Beldon and Woodvale).  Share my posts, point them at this webpage (under the Campaign menu), and lets see how effective, or not, social media and the internet are.

About Steve Laing

Political observer, free thinker and problem solver, Steve contends that the current democratic processes have neither kept up to date with globalisation nor modern business practices, resulting in increasing dissatisfaction with modern politics. However, new technology could be used to not only reconfigure our system, but give the electorate even greater representation than was previously the case. For more background information on Steve, please check his LinkedIn profile.

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