I've avoided blogging about the federal election taking place today, here in Australia. Frankly, I'm unexcited by the prospect. I feel, or felt, a lot of good will towards Julia Gillard, but she's managed to alienate me considerably as the process has gone on. She could have canned the internet censorship proposal once and for all, but didn't. She could have been positive about the prospects of recognising same-sex marriages, but took a hardline social conservative stance on the issue. She didn't have to expand the school chaplaincy program. She could have announced measures more welcoming of refugees - this whole question of who will best "stop the boats" is ugly, xenophobic, and a disgrace to the country.
I don't relish the prospect of Tony Abbott as prime minister, though he has sometimes sounded the more progressive of the two candidates. Be that as it may, deeply conservative candidates have a way of showing it once they obtain power. If it comes to a question of whether I think the country is in safer hands under Labor, with Gillard as prime minister, or under the Coalition, with Abbott as prime minister, then I'll go with the former. But not with any great enthusiasm.
This morning, I'm going to look closely at the policies of the Greens, the Sex Party, and the Secular Party. They all have something to offer. They deserve to be placed, in some order or other, above the major parties in the Senate vote, and their candidates for the House of Representatives deserve some support.