Well, State Elections are on today in NSW. As voting is compulsory here, we'll drop by the local highschool sometime today to cast our ballots. I'm not impressed by either the Labour (left) or Liberal (right) parties - Labour has been in office for 12 years and, as can be expected, has spent a lot of money on increasing the size of the public service, and increasing their wages. I don't mind spending extra taxes on boosting the numbers and pay of police, teachers and nurses, but there also tends to be a bloating of pretty useless "administration" staff in the public service under Labour. At the same time the State's infrastructure has been allowed to run down - insufficient spending on public transport (trains, roads, buses, ferries) and public utilities (water). Unfortunately the opposition Liberal party seems to be full of fools - the leader is uninspiring and has made some bad gaffes during campaigning, and we've hardly heard a peep from any of the other Liberal "shadow ministers". As neither of the major parties has much support it probably means that the minor parties (Greens and Democrats) will do better, and a lot if local "independent" members will probably also be elected. This is not a bad thing in terms of local representation, but it does mean that if there's a "hung parliament" (no party having an absolute majority) with the independents or minor parties having the "balance of power", we won't really have any idea of what policies will actually be implemented during the next term of parliament. Most of the independents are "one issue" candidates and will make deals to vote on other issues on a case-by-case basis. This is a bit "anti-democratic" as it means the voters didn't get to elect a party with a clearly outlined platform, but will get policy decided by "deals" made with various independents.
Ah well, a least we'll get a break from campaigning after today - until the Federal election later this year ;(