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Australia Politics

Assange Stands 'Real Chance' of Election In Australia 204

Okian Warrior writes "Various new sources are reporting the results of a recent Labor Party poll, indicating that Julian Assange would be elected to the Australian senate, should he choose to run. From the Sun Daily article: 'Controversial WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange stands a real chance of winning an upper house seat in his native Australia if he presses ahead with plans to stand for election, a poll showed Saturday. A survey conducted by the ruling Labor party's internal pollsters UMR Research and published in the Sydney Morning Herald newspaper showed 25 percent of those polled would vote for the whistleblowing website chief.'"
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Assange Stands 'Real Chance' of Election In Australia

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  • by FudRucker ( 866063 ) on Sunday May 20, 2012 @01:51PM (#40058017)
    i will sell everything i own and move to australia because it is the last western nation with a little redemption left in it
    • by macraig ( 621737 )

      It also has a much hotter head honcho than the U.S., so if you're nursing fantasies about being a national leader's plaything you could do worse.

    • I'm just concerned an "Australian" kangaroo will "spontaneously" explode in some American city, and then before the ink on the infrastructure rebuilding contracts is dry we'll be flying upside-down C-130s and invading down under to "liberate" them from a "terrorist atheist criminal dictator".

      Man, the fucked up thing is that the Australians aren't even the most dangerous thing on the continent. We'll probably lose a couple hundred guys just to the local wildlife.

      • by ediron2 ( 246908 )

        I LOL'd. A friend from up here in the wild west of USA that now lives in Brisbane constantly reminds me of this: we have Grizzly bears (Yey us, we win on large omnivores), a couple kinds of biting flies, mosquitoes (but no malaria), hobo spiders and rattlesnakes (who rattle to warn you away; some call them the gentlemen of the desert). You have god knows how many distinct species of dangerous snakes, spiders, flies, lizards, sting rays, crocodiles, various invertebrate seaborne killers, bugs, spiders, and

        • by TapeCutter ( 624760 ) on Sunday May 20, 2012 @08:44PM (#40060101) Journal
          We had some grizzly bears, the fucking crocs ate 'em.
        • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

          by Anonymous Coward

          We have Drop Bears Sir, nothing comes close to the terror. Not even the most poisonous snake or spider in the world nor the largest white pointer can come close to that. Even the military run screaming should one of their own be taken in some desert exercise, shredded in a few vicious slashes to be eaten and regurgitated to it's young. Drop Bears strike fear into our very community and on a daily basis.

      • by Jah-Wren Ryel ( 80510 ) on Sunday May 20, 2012 @06:07PM (#40059245)

        Man, the fucked up thing is that the Australians aren't even the most dangerous thing on the continent. We'll probably lose a couple hundred guys just to the local wildlife.

        Well yeah, even the kangaroos have stinger missiles. []

      • by Chemware ( 311783 ) on Monday May 21, 2012 @01:52AM (#40061671)

        Actually, Australian kangaroos are pretty nasty ...

        There's a story around about how a Australian helicopter simulator was being demonstrated to some US colleagues. After doing a few passes over some nice rural landscape they were very surprised when some of the kangaroos below pulled out a few shoulder-mounted SAMs and started shooting. They were even more surprised when they were "hit", and crashed and burned.

        It turns out that when the software engineers created the kangaroo objects they did so by cloning some soldier objects, and then just changing the uniforms. They forgot to change some of the more aggressive behaviours.

    • by Asic Eng ( 193332 ) on Sunday May 20, 2012 @02:42PM (#40058275)

      Well, Germany now has the Pirate party represented in it's fourth state parliament (Berlin: 15 seats, Saarland 4 seats, North_Rhine-Westphaliav 20 seats, Schleswig-Holstein 6 seats). They are polling at 11% for the federal elections.

      One senate seat doesn't seem like all that much...

      • It's actually not that easy to get in the Australian Federal Senate.

        1. It's a first past the post style count.
        2. There are 2 ways of voting, above the line or below the line
        3. People like Assange will never be endorsed by a political party and thus you need to vote below the line to vote for them, only parties have boxes above the line
        4. The number of boxes below the line and the fact you have to mark all of them if you vote below means almost no one does

        The only exception to this rule is if they are so ext

    • it is the last western nation with a little redemption left in it

      Unfortunately the LITTLE in the original post is all too true, many of us would characterise it more like "Some is better than none, but only just barely".

    • by DrXym ( 126579 )
      Australia is a pretty draconian place in its own right, e.g. heavy handed censorship of the web, TV and video games.
    • by drsmithy ( 35869 )

      i will sell everything i own and move to australia because it is the last western nation with a little redemption left in it

      I wouldn't rush into it. Most of the people and politicians here seem determined to turn Australia into a clone of America. If the Liberals (Australian equivalent of the Republicans) take power in the next Federal election I, for one, will be aiming to leave the country.

  • "Internal Poll" (Score:3, Insightful)

    by DesScorp ( 410532 ) < minus math_god> on Sunday May 20, 2012 @02:03PM (#40058079) Homepage Journal

    Because they'd never lie about his chances in an attempt to drum up support. Oh no, that would never happen.

    • by tomhath ( 637240 )

      Because they'd never lie about his chances

      I'd love to see internal memos revealing that leaked to the press.

      • Except it doesn't make sense, Gillard has basically branded him a terrorist in public and was serious about it, particularly early on in the saga. The only minister who initially stood up for Assange's rights was KRuddy the foriegn minister, note that providing proper consular assistance and supporting freedom of the press are very different from supporting a senate run. I just can't see the Labor party or even the Greens offering him pre-selection so he would have to run as an independent, but where? - Whi
        • Which electorate is that fond of him?.

          Senators represent a State or Territory. He'd pick the State that gave him the best odds of winning (6 seats per State per election vs. 2 seats per Territory per election). IIRC it only takes the signatures of fifty individuals eligible to vote in that State or Territory to nominate as an independent senate candidate. As long as he is not disqualified by section 44 of our Constitution (dual or foreign citizen, subject to a custodial sentence of more than one year, undischarged bankrupt, on public payro

    • At the moment a maggot invested week old corpse of a Kangaroo could poll better than the labor party so that really is hardly a suprise. For that matter a maggot infested dead Kangaroo probably would smell better than the labor party too.
  • Immunity (Score:5, Interesting)

    by koekebakker ( 1296563 ) on Sunday May 20, 2012 @02:11PM (#40058125)
    Would this grant him political immunity? ;-)
    • Re:Immunity (Score:4, Interesting)

      by Intrepid imaginaut ( 1970940 ) on Sunday May 20, 2012 @02:41PM (#40058267)

      Sad really when you think about it. Citizen Assange can be set up, framed and generally gone after with impunity. Politician Assange, dearie me no, he's important! Might cause an international incident!

      The system is so broken.

      • by tqk ( 413719 )

        The system is so broken.


        So, if that's the way it works these days, let's break it again! Get into the spirit of things. Welcome to the 21st Century. Nihilists on every street corner and poisonous critters infesting our dreams.

        What a world this is. :-| You people (not you personally) just keep on astonishing me. "Don't. Stop! No. Don't stop!!!"

      • he should have gone for a us government seat. he already has the womanizing ways. he would fit right in as a state governor.

    • No (Score:4, Informative)

      by Sycraft-fu ( 314770 ) on Sunday May 20, 2012 @09:20PM (#40060299)

      There's no such thing. You are thinking diplomatic immunity. Diplomatic immunity is granted to any accredited diplomat working in the host country. It also can be, and is, granted to politicians visiting on official state trips. However it isn't something that happens by magic. It is granted by the host nation, meaning the nation the person is in.

      What's more, it can be waived. If a diplomat commits a crime the host nation can ask the parent nation to waive immunity. Depending on the relationship between the nations, this can happen. An immunity waiver isn't up to the diplomat, it is up to their government.

      So even if immunity applied (it wouldn't since he was never granted it) Sweden could ask the Australian government to waive immunity on the rape charges. Australia probably would.

      It is not this magic shield that protects any politician people seem to think.

  • by poity ( 465672 ) on Sunday May 20, 2012 @02:13PM (#40058133)

    If he becomes part of the Australia gov, then future Wikileaks exposés on governments that are Australia's economic/geopolitical competitors would be more easily called into question. Releases on China, Japan, NZ, Indonesia, even the US, would at the outset be accused of having pro-Australian political motivations behind them.

  • Oh really? (Score:2, Funny)

    by Anonymous Coward

    So how long before OpenLeaks posts the real poll results?

    • by Sique ( 173459 )

      What's so special about poll results? They are just an attempt do understand the current opinion. They don't have any legal implications. If there was a real election, and the real results were hidden and the election faked, then there would be something to publish. But a poll? Seriously? If you don't believe the results, ask the next polling institute and get your own.

    • openleaks was never real.

      I was a cover for microsoft funded mole to leave and shred documents under some cover of credibility. Don't believe me? [] - hasn't been touched since 2010 and their security certificate has expiried.

  • I Hope they would make him Minister of Foreign Affairs.

    Fuck you U.S.A.; Diplomatic immunity.

    I know it would never happen, not even sure if that position has Immunity. Leave me with my dreams....

  • There couldn't be a more appropriate job for a unctuous, hyper-vain, womanizing publicity whore who's always looking for other people to fund what he wants to do.

    And more importantly, he'll have a first-hand chance to see - behind the scenes - exactly why some government communication has to be kept out of public view. Everyone who gets elected to such positions gets a big fat wake-up call about security matters they used to blow off as irrelevent.
    • unctuous, hyper-vain, womanizing publicity whore who's always looking for other people to fund what he wants to do

      And aside from the womanizing you've just described Mark Zuckerberg (and pretty much any other high-profile massive-IPO CEO of a company which is insanely over-hyped)

      • And aside from the womanizing you've just described Mark Zuckerberg (and pretty much any other high-profile massive-IPO CEO of a company which is insanely over-hyped)

        The difference is that Zuckerberg creates things, but Assange just wants to control and/or destroy them in order to be visible and famous. You may not like Zuckerburg, but Assange is leech with delusions of grandeur. There is a difference between them - and not just Assange's condescending treatment of women.

  • by GrahamCox ( 741991 ) on Sunday May 20, 2012 @07:45PM (#40059779) Homepage
    Looking at the choice currently facing the Australian voter, a three legged sheep would stand a "real chance" of election.
  • Assange and Controy would likely be in the same state (Victoria) and competing against each other.

    Conroy is from the Australian Labor Party has tried very hard to impose stricter censorship on us, last election there was a campaign encouraging people from all parties to put conroy last on the ballot (preferential voting). He is not well liked by the people, well, excpet for when hes doing NBN stuff.

    With Conroy and Assange on the same ballot, it would be difficult to not think about censorship when voting.

  • Aside from having a person who's willing to "chap a few (or a lot of) hides" in order to do what he thinks is right, in government, it would certainly make it a LOT harder to extradite him if he were to become a senator. Just how many world leades get extradited? Not many, I recon.

    As an American, I won't claim to know the intracacies of Australian government/politics, but at least on the surface, running/getting elected sounds like a smart thing for Assange to do...assuming nobody assassinates him for it.

  • Government watchdog is one thing. Watchdog government is entirely different. I'm not sure how he can continue what he's doing while holding actual power.
    • He can't. He'd certaly need to put another person doing Wikileaks PR, and get completely away from it.

      But that is way too much speculative. Had anybody already asked him what he'll do?

They are called computers simply because computation is the only significant job that has so far been given to them.