Australian Parliament Should Allow Job-Sharing MPs Because It’s What Every Politician Secretly Wants. But Does It Go Far Enough?

April 21, 2024
Australian Parliament Should Allow Job-Sharing MPs Because It's What Every Politician Secretly Wants. But Does It Go Far Enough?

In the hallowed halls of political discourse, where the winds of change blow as unpredictably as a Melbourne afternoon, a radical proposal has emerged from the land down under.

It appears that Bronwen Bock and Lucy Bradlow, united in their spirited campaign, seek to redefine the very fabric of political representation by becoming Australia’s first job-sharing Member of Parliament candidates.

As an ardent supporter of ingenuity in all its forms, I, Professor Sebastian Longsword, find this notion not only delightful but woefully inadequate.

Why stop at two when a legion could do the job with more flair?

The Proposal: Not Far Enough

While Bronwen and Lucy’s dual candidacy is a commendable start, I propose we embrace the mythical Hydra, a creature whose multiple heads could argue amongst themselves while still presenting a united front.

Imagine a politician, not limited to a mere duo but expanded to three, four, or even five heads, each capable of spouting promises and policies independent of the others.

Such a multi-headed marvel, equipped with the ability to disagree with itself publicly, could revolutionise accountability in politics.

The Bane of a Politician’s Life: Accountability

Accountability—the mere word sends shivers down the spine of the most seasoned politicians.

Committees, councils, and coalitions are traditionally their shields against direct blame.

The job-sharing notion introduced by Bronwen and Lucy inadvertently taps into this ethos, yet it tiptoes around the grander possibility: the Hydra Protocol.

Under this scheme, our multi-headed representative could delegate blame to one of its other heads in a dazzling display of bureaucratic deflection.

Reverse Scott Morrison: A Cautionary Tale

Former Prime Minister Scott Morrison, in his secretive accumulation of multiple portfolios, mistakenly magnified his accountability rather than diffusing it.

This is where he faltered, and this is where the Hydra Protocol triumphs.

By distributing the responsibilities (and potential failings) across several heads, one can enjoy the spectacle of power with diluted responsibility.

Practical Implementation: The CSIRO and Genetic Marvels

To breathe life into this vision, collaboration with the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO) would be imperative. One might suggest that the CSIRO could tap my good self on the shoulder to help champion this development, bringing my zestful MBA Thinking, and also ask Dr Karl to help popularise it. He might even want to be a guinea pig, having a second or third head grafted on so he can do up to three radio interviews at once.

The CSIRO’s groundbreaking work could pivot to the genetic engineering of such Hydra-like candidates.

Picture this: an election campaign featuring a candidate with a literal head for finance, another for social issues, and perhaps a third for environmental concerns, each capable of independent thought and speech.

Potential Political Debates

Imagine a parliamentary debate where one head passionately supports a bill, while another, in real-time, voices opposition, creating a spectacle of democratic deliberation unrivalled by any. The possibilities for comedy—and indeed, transparency—are endless.

Dialogue Example: The Hydra Politician in Action

Head One: “I staunchly support this tax reform. It is essential for economic growth!”
Head Two: “Nonsense, it burdens the middle class excessively. I oppose it vehemently!”
Head Three: “I’m just here to remind everyone to recycle. Also, has anyone seen my glasses?”

Sample Campaign Platforms: A Hydra Protocol Candidate’s Promises

In a political landscape crying out for multiplicity and flexibility, our Hydra Protocol candidate would offer a suite of policies as diverse as their multiple heads. Here are a few key platforms that encapsulate their commitment to addressing the unique needs of a multifaceted electorate:

  1. More Head Room on Airlines: In an audacious move to make air travel more comfortable, this candidate will push for legislation requiring airlines to provide not just more leg room, but more head room—catering to Australians of all heights and their multiple headgear needs.
  2. Headphone Retail Reform: Understanding the audio needs of a multi-headed populace, they will propose a consumer-friendly policy: “Buy One Set of Headphones, Get Four Free.” This initiative aims to ensure that all heads can enjoy music or news simultaneously without financial burden.
  3. Sovereign Hat Production: With a visionary approach to local manufacturing, this candidate will champion legislation to enhance Australia’s sovereign capability in hat production. This policy not only supports local industries but also tips the cap to an oft-overlooked sector that would flourish under a Hydra-headed leadership.
  4. Multiple Head Health Services: Recognising the complex healthcare needs of multi-headed citizens, they will propose a pioneering health policy ensuring that all heads receive equal medical attention under Medicare. This initiative guarantees no head is left behind, promoting a holistic approach to health that is both fair and necessary.

Hypothetical Campaign Speech Snippets

During a vibrant campaign rally, our Hydra candidate might say:

Head One: “Fellow Australians, it’s high time our travels became more comfortable. Why cram our legs and heads into tiny spaces when we can stretch out? Our air policy stands for spacious skies, both metaphorically and literally!”
Head Two: “And let’s tune into fairness with our revolutionary headphone deal. Why buy multiple sets when you can equip all ears for the price of one? It’s sound policy for sound times!”
Head Three: “Hats off—or should I say on—to Australian manufacturing! Our commitment to reviving and expanding hat production is not just about fashion; it’s about fabricating a future where local craftsmanship is celebrated.”
Head Four: “Healthcare should literally be head-to-head. Our policy ensures every head counts equally in the eyes of our medical system. It’s comprehensive care for complex individuals!”

Your Vote Counts

As whimsical as the Hydra Protocol may sound, it embodies the spirit of innovation that politics desperately needs.

Bronwen and Lucy have undoubtedly set the stage with their job-sharing proposal, but why nibble around the edges of reform when we can take a gigantic, multi-headed bite?

Let us stride boldly into this brave new world, where political representation is not just shared but spectacularly multiplied.

To the sceptics, I say: Embrace the madness, for within it lies the genius of progress.

To the electorate, I urge: Vote not just for change, but for a revolution in how we perceive and perform political duties.

After all, if politics is theatre, shouldn’t we aim for a show worth watching?

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