The Science Party Space Policy

Falcon_9_COTS_Demo_F1_Launch.jpgThe Science Party is the only party in Australian politics with a Space Policy and vision of the future where we take advantage of the potential rewards of investing in scientific research.

The Science Party Space Policy has been developed to take the best ideas from the Australian Academy of Science (AAS) National Committee for Space Science (NCSS), who have studied it, and who know how best Australia can be a part of it.

The three core ideas of our Space Policy are:

  1. Create an Australian Space Agency, ASTRA
  2. The Woomera launch facility
  3. Adopt expert recommendations from the National Committee for Space Science.
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NSW Greens rent price caps won't work- and might make it harder to rent

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The key to cheaper housing is more supply, not rent controls.

The NSW Greens have demonstrated how differently they see the housing market to the Future Party. Today they have announced policy, including increased rights for renters (good) and rent price increase caps (really, really bad). We've had a generation of Greens councillors preventing redevelopment, which pushes up prices by limiting supply of new housing. Now they want to prevent rental price increases from rising above the rate of inflation.
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Hockey worried people might live to 150YO - cuts Medicare to induce earlier mortality

Medicare.pngJoe Hockey has justified the cuts to Medicare rebates, by saying that people born today may live to 150. The Future Party is also optimistic about the life expectancy of people into the future. However, for life expectancy to increase, two things must occur: increases in health care provision and increases scientific research. This government seems intent on making cuts to both these areas, something that puts the notion of extended life at risk.

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Quis custodiet ipsos custodes?

Its a question about as old as talking about government, politics and the security of the state. Who will watch over the watchers themselves? The Abbott government's answer, apparently, is no one.

The Coalition, ALP and PUP have combined in the Senate today to pass legislation that among other changes grants ASIO extraordinary new powers to declare a "special intelligence operation" - exempting its agents from obeying nearly every Australian law, and making it a crime for whistle-blowers and journalists to report. This effectively eradicates, in some circumstances, two of the major checks and balances on the powers granted to intelligence community - namely, the rule of law, and potential disclosure. The removal of these safeguards is especially troubling in light of the totally inadequate response to recent alleged abuses of powers justified in the name of national security, such as the ongoing pursuit of the former ASIS agent who disclosed spying on East Timor by Australia apparently conducted for the sake of an advantage in trade negotiations.

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Industry Minister proves he’s no substitute for a dedicated Science Minister

Albert_Einstein_Head.jpgThe Industry Minister, Ian Macfarlane, has proven again why we need a dedicated Science Minister: he doesn't understand how science works. He recently gave a speech in which he argued that scientific grants should be based on number of patents awarded, because in his view this will create jobs. This demonstrates a failure to grasp two critical concepts: the difference between scientific research and patentable inventions, and the reason why we fund science using taxes.

Scientific research is quite different to technological research, despite being intimately related. In particular, only inventions are patentable; discoveries are not. When we think of great scientists, we generally think of Einstein first. Einstein's theories were not patentable, because they were discoveries of the natural universe, explored using novel mathematical ideas. None of these count as inventions for the purposes of patent law.

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Lockout laws fail to curb violence

Exclusive data obtained and analysed by the Future Party has revealed that, in addition to damaging Sydney’s international reputation and tarnishing the city’s nightlife culture, the Coalition government’s lockout laws have failed to achieve their objective of a reduction in alcohol-related violence. In fact, not only has the policy exacerbated the very issue it exists to diminish, but has also coincided with a spike in the number of alcohol related assaults and accidents outside of licensed premises.

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The federal budget – our response so far

We’d like to take a moment to summarise The Future Party’s response to this year’s Federal Budget.

Prior even to the budget itself, rumours and early announcements of cuts to research prompted our Fund Our Future campaign, culminating successfully in the Rally for Research at Sydney Town Hall – and we will, of course, continue to make the vital case for the government to prioritise science and innovation in the weeks, months and years ahead. We have been and continue to be staunch opponents of the government’s agenda to dismantle all meaningful action to reduce carbon emissions, in blatant disregard of the science on climate change – and indeed, we go further than any other party in our consistently strong stance on this issue, whether its our support for fuel excise indexation or for renewable-enabling smart grids and nuclear energy research. Likewise we are long standing advocates of more generous tax and welfare treatment for low income Australians, rather than the cruelarbitrary cuts favoured by the government.

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A challenge to the Greens and the Labor Party

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Abbott’s deficit levy has been widely panned by all kinds, from business, to Liberal backbenchers, to the Labor Party and even The Greens. This is incredible considering the nature of the levy: it is a progressive tax. Yes, I just called an Abbott policy progressive. The tax disproportionately impacts the wealthy, and the overwhelming majority of the population will have no additional taxes to pay.

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Response to the NSW Premier’s Resignation

The Future Party strongly supports the ongoing efforts of the Independent Commission Against Corruption to clean up the political culture in NSW. As Premier Barry O’Farrell noted in his press conferences yesterday and today, it is vital that people cooperate with the efforts of the ICAC and other bodies seeking to stamp out institutionalised corruption in all its forms. It is also vital that our political leaders hold themselves to the highest possible standards of integrity.

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Submission to the inquiry into the conduct of the 2013 Federal Election

Download this submission:
Submission to the inquiry into the conduct of the 2013 Federal Election
 (PDF, 278 KB, 11 April 2014)

Read the text of the submission below:


 

To the Committee Secretary,

Joint Standing Committee on Electoral Matters,

The Future Party is a small, growing, and recently established party – a so-called micro party. We are nonetheless serious and issues focused, with a comprehensive policy platform, and are seeking to build support over the long term to eventually become a viable alternative force in Australian politics. As such, we share the concerns of the public, experts and the major parties that there are systemic flaws in our electoral process that turn the contest for some Senate seats into preference deal lotteries.

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