Wikipedia talk:WikiProject Australian politics

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Andreas11213 has returned, this time obsessed with religion[edit]

He's adding religion to Infoboxes all over the place for Australian pollies who don't have it listed yet. In Gough Whitlam's case, he added that Gough was agnostic. I reverted, because agnosticism is not a religion. Andreas11213 reverted back, saying it exists in other articles. WP:OTHERSTUFFEXISTS means this is not a valid reason, but this is Andreas11213. I await his response. Can I ask other editors to keep a watch on Andreas11213's current campaign please? I don't want to go near 3RRR HiLo48 (talk) 10:02, 23 October 2014 (UTC)

He's been doing this for public figures all over the world. One look at his talk page and edit history shows it filled with warnings for edit waring over such changes. I'm sure he will eventually be blocked again. The Tepes (talk) 06:37, 28 October 2014 (UTC)
He did it again yesterday to Andrew Robb and Mathias Cormann, with an Edit summary saying it was sourced and relevant. I reverted, asking him to demonstrate relevance. For most Australian politicians, I don't believe it is. HiLo48 (talk) 17:08, 31 October 2014 (UTC)
I confess to being a little bemused about why this is a problem. I mean, I get the "Religion: none" stuff, but surely someone's religion is a basic biographical detail? Its inclusion is pretty standard in things like ADB, and also in most parliamentary profiles. As long as we don't make a huge deal of it, what's the problem? I mean, most people's birthplaces are pretty "irrelevant" too, but we still include them. Frickeg (talk) 21:43, 31 October 2014 (UTC)
It's a problem because, firstly, in Australian politics it's usually (with some obvious exceptions) irrelevant to the political behaviour of a politician and, secondly, it's too often a point scoring exercise to highlight someone's alleged religion. Most "Catholics" I know never go near a church, and ignore some of the most fundamental rulings of their faith, such as on contraception (to stick to a safe one), so describing them here as Catholic is misleading, or at least irrelevant. Yet others, who want to highlight and hence boost the size of how many many adherents their faith has, love including it. Alternatively, given Australia's huge historical divide between Protestants and Catholics, they want to highlight how evil someone is because they're a Catholic. And because the simplistic way such an item appears in an Infobox allows no scope for further explanation, it becomes just a simplistic label for simpletons to eagerly misinterpret. None of these issues apply to where someone was born. HiLo48 (talk) 21:57, 31 October 2014 (UTC)
I don't really get this argument. If someone identifies as Catholic, then it's not up to us to analyse or question how far they agree with Catholic doctrine or how often they go to church. It's also completely irrelevant to say that it doesn't influence people's behaviour - that's not why we would include it, we would include it as a basic biographical detail. I honestly don't see how there is any problem with simply including a statement of someone's self-identified faith, and I do think it is information someone might reasonably expect to find in a biography. Potentially nefarious motivations are not a reason to exclude something, merely a reason to keep a close eye on how it's done. Frickeg (talk) 23:14, 31 October 2014 (UTC)
You say "we would include it as a basic biographical detail". I know you would. Others are not so ethical, nor so clear thinking. The Infobox entry gives no latitude to indicate whether a politician's religion has a massive influence on his policy position (certainly true for some), or whether it's just something he was born with, and hence makes no difference (obviously true for others). It's not actually useful information, and can be easily misinterpreted. HiLo48 (talk) 23:28, 31 October 2014 (UTC)
Hmm. I think we'll have to agree to disagree on this one. I mean, regardless of any ulterior motives, it seems simple enough to me: if there is a verifiable source, include it; if not, don't. I'd definitely see it as useful information regardless. Frickeg (talk) 01:53, 1 November 2014 (UTC)
What's it useful for? That's as much of a cliché as Andreas saying it's relevant. HiLo48 (talk) 02:19, 1 November 2014 (UTC)
It's useful because it's basic information about someone. What's useful about parents' names? Birthplace? Burial place? They're basic facts about people, which is supposed to be what we're in the business of. Frickeg (talk) 02:46, 1 November 2014 (UTC)
Parents' names, birthplace and burial place are rarely controversial, or in need of further clarification. The Infobox, where no clarification is likely to happen, is the wrong place for religion. HiLo48 (talk) 02:57, 1 November 2014 (UTC)
I would have thought, in general, that controversy would be the exception rather than the rule for religion too. If there's an issue or it's unclear, then obviously that would need to be dealt with, but a blanket rule against religion in infoboxes seems a silly overreaction. Frickeg (talk) 03:19, 1 November 2014 (UTC)
"Controversy" was probably the wrong word. Others such as "influential" and "overarching motivating force" might better reflect my concerns. One of Andreas' targets for the label today was George Brandis. To me, none of his policies and public philosophies are strongly influenced by his Catholicism. Compare him with another government member who has also been at at least shadow ministry level, Cory Bernardi. The latter's public views and utterances would appear to be strongly driven by his devout religious beliefs. To simply label them both as Catholics in the Infobox tells little of the real story, and is, in fact, quite misleading. HiLo48 (talk) 03:29, 1 November 2014 (UTC)
Isn't that kind of editorialising on our part, though? I'd agree that Bernardi certainly comes across as more religiously motivated than, say, Brandis, but that doesn't mean we shouldn't list them both as Catholics in the infobox. This kind of information is what the infoboxes are for. Any further context can be provided in the article. (I get the sense that we've both hit a bit of a brick wall with this, though. Maybe some other input?) Frickeg (talk) 07:52, 1 November 2014 (UTC)
I'm neither for nor against their inclusion. Just so long as such an inclusion is adequately sourced, given it's potentially controversial nature. I would argue the standard should be at least a direct quote from the individual identifying themselves as a practising adherent of said religion. Any lower standard would likely result in misrepresentation of individuals, intentionally or unintentionally.The Tepes (talk) 12:10, 1 November 2014 (UTC)
A discussion is also underway at Talk:Mathias Cormann#Religion. WWGB (talk) 01:21, 3 November 2014 (UTC)
For reference to others the discussion at Talk:Mathias Cormann#Religion really applies to the topic as a whole and not just Cormann, just fyi if you wish to see various arguments.The Tepes (talk) 12:42, 10 November 2014 (UTC)

Election links[edit]

I accept that there is a consensus to include election links in infoboxes, however, I have a question. Which elections should be added there? For example, in Tony Abbott's infobox, underneath Prime Minister, it says 2010, 2013. He contested both elections as Leader of the Opposition, not Prime Minister. On Gough Whitlam's infobox, under Prime Minister is says 1969, 1972, 1974, 1975 and 1977. He only contested one of these elections as Prime Minister. So, I think it is misleading to put elections in the infobox. Thoughts? I think it is just too confusing to decide so it should just be removed completely, because besides, infoboxes for politicians are supposed to be about offices they hold, not about elections they contest. I will not change anything until someone replies, but if no one does I will start removing election links. Andreas11213 (talk) 02:57, 24 October 2014 (UTC)

If you'll take some advice, I really wouldn't be delivering ultimatums about stuff like this; it just gets people's backs up. On this one I actually agree with you completely and would prefer that they were gone altogether from the infoboxes, this uncertainty being one of many reasons. I mean, gosh, Whitlam was involved in every election from 1954 to 1977 in some capacity, wasn't he? Frickeg (talk) 04:26, 24 October 2014 (UTC)
Yeah exactly, and as HiLo48 reverts my edits when I don't get the chance to reply, I will do the same here, as no one has replied. Andreas11213 (talk) 15:45, 24 October 2014 (UTC)
WTF? HiLo48 (talk) 21:06, 24 October 2014 (UTC)
Regardless of whether I agree with you, Andreas, you're still the one in the wrong here. Establish consensus FIRST, and then make the changes. Frickeg (talk) 23:40, 24 October 2014 (UTC)
Well I can't actually gain consensus because no one other than you has said anything, and since you agree with me, I will take that as consensus and start editing. Andreas11213 (talk) 02:23, 25 October 2014 (UTC)
No, that is not consensus. You made that post yesterday - it's hardly surprising it hasn't got a lot of attention just yet. Wait. Frickeg (talk) 02:50, 25 October 2014 (UTC)
A day is quite an adequate amount of time. No one has argued against removing the links and I have received the support of another user in doing so, so unless someone wants to say something I will continue removing election links. Andreas11213 (talk) 05:34, 25 October 2014 (UTC)
To be clear, the concept has my support. Your actions absolutely do not. Consensus takes time, and a day is certainly not adequate, especially in a comparatively little-frequented area. Sit back and relax, and wait. There's no rush. If, say, a week goes by, and still no one has commented, that might be an appropriate time to go ahead. Frickeg (talk) 07:04, 25 October 2014 (UTC)
It's time to come to Frickeg's support. He is right Andreas. Wikipedia has no deadline. There is no rush on this matter. I also happen to agree that the information you want removed from Infoboxes could be removed. I prefer minimal content in Infoboxes. This stuff clutters them up. But, please be patient. HiLo48 (talk) 10:56, 27 October 2014 (UTC)
I strongly support their inclusion, for reasons that were stated not that long ago in the last section on this page. I'm not opposed to only including the links to the relevant office, such some in the Prime Minister section when relevant, and others as Opposition leader, though I would argue having them all together is more convenient.
While I accept that the information is in the body of the article, often at times such links are difficult to find and spread through out. An election is one of the most important aspects of a leaders history, especially since it has become more presidential.
Again every argument I made can be accessed in the archive, and were made not that long ago, so this is likely all I will say on the issue.The Tepes (talk) 06:46, 28 October 2014 (UTC)
Also Andreas11213 it really is a basic courtesy to inform those who have previously contributed to the matter that you are bringing it up again. It really takes no effort.The Tepes (talk) 06:24, 30 October 2014 (UTC)
Andreas11213, any edit you make to remove those links will be reverted on the grounds that you have not obtained consensus. Does it need to be made any clearer to you? Consensus is that the links to elections that they fought, either as Prime Minster or as Leader of the Opposition, stay. Either obtain consensus or find a policy reason why the links ought be removed, in which case you'll need to obtain consensus on your interpretation of any relevant policies. AlanStalk 11:29, 30 October 2014 (UTC)
That's the way we do things. I'm not seeing any consensus for removal. Federal elections are nowadays seen as "Presidential" in style, and always have been to some extent. Sure, there were other candidates in 1972, and sure, the two leaders were just contesting their own seats, but 1972 is the year that Whitlam defeated Gorton. We see each election as a contest between the two leaders, and others, even minor arty leaders, not so much. It is useful to include direct links in the infobox to those elections. --Pete (talk) 18:44, 30 October 2014 (UTC)
The year Labor defeated the Coalition, more accurately. If you can't even remember the Coalition leader (McMahon in this case), that undermines your argument a tad. I just think this is way too much information for an infobox, which are already ridiculously bloated. This information will all be found in the text. Frickeg (talk) 19:41, 30 October 2014 (UTC)
Of course. Whitlam defeated McMahon. That's why he's revered as a giant-killer. I was thinking of the 1969 election, when Whitlam lost to Gorton. Nevertheless, I support links to elections in infoboxes. --Pete (talk) 04:32, 31 October 2014 (UTC)

Unfortunately to a few of you, I'm going to support the removal of the election links underneath 'PM'. I think if you wanted to include it - it should be under the title of leader of their political party. Really, you don't compete in an election as 'the PM' nor seeking the prime ministership specifically, you compete individually and as the leader of your party seeking a majority to form government. I think it creates an assumption that, for instance, Tony Abbott was PM going into the 2010 election and competing as such. I think it's also rather odd that the elections are listed, rather than the parliament in which they served as PM. A more accurate link then would be, for instance - under Tony Abbott's 'PM' title in the infobox, would be '44th parliament' or similar - but the '28th PM' vaguely does that already I guess. Discuss. Communistgoat (talk) 13:04, 30 October 2014 (UTC)

  • I have also previously supported the removal of the links. The Prime Minister does not become such by virtue of contesting an election, and there are many examples of an individual assuming the office while his/her party is already in government. Moreover, the links are misleading as most individuals who become Prime Minister, have contested other elections than those linked. In Australia the elections are to form a government. The selection of a Prime Minister is a separate process. If the links are to stay, I believe that there should at least be some clarification that they are only those elections contested by the individual while serving as a party leader are listed. Wikipeterproject (talk) 18:39, 30 October 2014 (UTC)
There is nothing misleading. The links are for elections fought as sitting prime minister or as sitting leader of the opposition. Nothing to misinterpret at all. Anyone at all familiar with the way election campaigns are fought in Australia ought to get it without much, if any at all, explaining. AlanStalk 12:38, 9 November 2014 (UTC)
Although I still think it's too much information for an infobox, either of the above two suggestions would be better than the ridiculous situation we have now. Frickeg (talk) 00:32, 31 October 2014 (UTC)

Election links should stay. Timeshift (talk) 00:03, 31 October 2014 (UTC)

I absolutely agree with Frickeg, they should go because they add too much text to an already full infobox. Also, it is a matter of opinion as to whether Australian elections have become "presidential like", which I completely disagree with. Elections in Australia are much more about the party, not the individual leader. We don't even have Presidential elections. The links to elections aren't that difficult to spot in the text, and even if you feel that strongly about it, maybe add a section to the page listing the elections they have contested or something. The main argument for removing the links is that it causes confusion as to weather they were Prime Minister during the election linked in the infobox. Tony Abbott wasn't Prime Minister in 2010, Kevin Rudd wasn't Prime Minister wasn't Prime Minister in 2007, John Howard wasn't Prime Minister in 1987, etc. So I strongly support their removal. Andreas11213 (talk) 06:48, 31 October 2014 (UTC)
  • For the record, I also support retaining the links, as they're a useful point from which one can look at each of the elections they contested as leader. Orderinchaos 07:20, 31 October 2014 (UTC)
    • Should they not go then as part of the "Leader of the Xxxx Party" section of the infobox? Frickeg (talk) 07:24, 31 October 2014 (UTC)

No because it still doesn't solve the issue of overcrowding the infobox. It looks really messy and it isn't even that important. It can easily be found in the text, and if you want to make it easier, why not add a new section to the page listing the elections that they have contested and add some brief information about it, rather than sticking it in the infobox where it looks very messy. Andreas11213 (talk) 08:49, 31 October 2014 (UTC)

They do not overcrowd the infobox. They are links to years, the year given being a four digit number. The most crowded being Whitlam or Menzies and even then the links are in small font taking up minimal space. I'm sorry Andreas you don't have an argument on any grounds that overcomes consensus. AlanStalk 12:43, 9 November 2014 (UTC)
I completely disagree that they have any impact on overcrowding the infobox. It's one line in a smaller font, or in the case of Menzies, two lines. Their removal really makes no difference to the size of the infobox.
Just to address some propositions others have made or inferred as to altering them, I am not opposed to them being moved to the "Leader of party" section.
As for the issue that the process for becoming Prime Minister is separate to the election, yes those who have raised this are technically correct, but I would argue that it is indisputable that the leader is more or less the central factor in Australian elections , especially since elections resemble a Presidential system more then anything else for over the past 50 years. The election really is the practical process of becoming PM.
There really isn't anything any of us can add that we haven't all already said last time this was brought up not that long ago.The Tepes (talk) 09:34, 31 October 2014 (UTC)
I had the distinct feeling that this was an attempt to make a change "under the radar". Political subjects are touchy enough without emulating the behaviour of politicians. I'm not seeing any change to consensus to keep election links. --Pete (talk) 09:46, 31 October 2014 (UTC)
Well considering Andreas11213 began making the change within a day of making this post, and failed to inform any of the individuals involved in the previous debate. I would have to agree with you Pete.The Tepes (talk) 15:55, 31 October 2014 (UTC)
Well I just counted and I'm pretty sure it's five against five, so I'm not really sure what happens here... who wins? 09:56, 1 November 2014 (UTC)
Nobody 'wins'. No consensus to change. Time to move on. By the way, allowing only 1 day for discussion and claiming it as ample is hilarious. Timeshift (talk) 10:03, 1 November 2014 (UTC)
We ignore your count, because we don't vote here. HiLo48 (talk) 10:06, 1 November 2014 (UTC)
While it's good to see you are now taking proposed controversial changes to talk pages, do you still not understand what consensus is?The Tepes (talk) 11:38, 1 November 2014 (UTC)

I've avoided this discussion so far, but wouldn't it make sense to put the election links in the party leader section of the infobox? This has been suggested by a couple of people above but seems to keep getting lost in the argument about whether to have them at all. I really don't care that much either way, but it would seem to be a solution that removes a lot of the confusion of having them in the PM section (i.e. the Whitlam example, which would be confusing as hell to people with less political knowledge than us). The Drover's Wife (talk) 13:09, 1 November 2014 (UTC)

Delete them all, as these kinda links aren't in infoboxes of other PMs & party leaders, like Stephen Harper, David Cameron, Ed Broadbent, Michael Ignatieff for example. GoodDay (talk) 14:31, 1 November 2014 (UTC)

While there is still great disagreement about keeping them or removing them, would people be okay with the proposal of moving them to the "Leader of Party X" Section? As this seems to be the suggestion of a few. Personally I'm equally fine with both where they are now and this proposal.The Tepes (talk) 04:52, 2 November 2014 (UTC)

While my first preference is still for them to be gone, if there is no consensus for that then I would strongly prefer this option. Frickeg (talk) 06:28, 2 November 2014
Splitting amongst PM and leader parts of the infobox sounds good until we consider the winning election. Should hawke not have 1983 under PM? Howard in 1996? Should fisher only get 1913/14? Should rudd only get 2013 and whitlam only get 1974? Timeshift (talk) 09:21, 2 November 2014 (UTC)
I think the point of this change would be to take them out of the PM section entirely, since it's always going to be confusing in that context, whereas elections contested as party leader is clear and obvious. The Drover's Wife (talk) 09:25, 2 November 2014 (UTC)
That would just hide them. Infoboxes are crowded enough as it is. Therefore i'll support remaining as-is. And GoodDay, WP:OTHERSTUFFEXISTS. What exists on other articles does not dictate what appears in said articles. Quite a bit of australian politics here is done it's own way, as it should. Partly because as far as politics goes, Australia is well-represented on wikipedia so much tweaking and customisation has occurred. Timeshift (talk) 10:19, 2 November 2014 (UTC)
What is the point of having information that's confusing and misleading just for the sake of it being more visible? If this information goes in the leader section, it is unambiguously correct. If it goes in the PM section, it's highly confusing to people without our background knowledge. I think anyone who needs these links can afford to scroll down a couple paragraphs. The Drover's Wife (talk) 13:43, 2 November 2014 (UTC)
I fail to see how it's misleading. Nowhere does it say the leader contested those elections as the PM. I think for casual readers without said background knowledge, they wouldn't look that far down the infobox. The more prominent, the better. If a reader fails comprehension to the point where they can't see the from and to date of the leader's PM-ship in the infobox, or the text in the lead that says it, or the election page itself, one would have to wonder. Timeshift (talk) 16:23, 2 November 2014 (UTC)
That is a pathetic argument. Maybe instead of trying to make ALL Australian political pages different to international ones, we should start making them similar to them so that consistency throughout Wikipedia is maintained. It is embarrassing and looks stupid when all other world politics pages are in unison and Australian ones are completely different. Also, I believe there is now an equal amount of consensus to retain and remove the links, so what happens now? Andreas11213 (talk) 13:13, 2 November 2014 (UTC)
There's no need to call arguments "pathetic" Andreas. And again, consensus is not a vote. We are not even close to having a clear majority of support one way or the other, so the status quo consensus remains. Try reading policies some time. It's like banging my head against a brick wall with you Andreas. I get the impression you prefer to just do things rather than discuss points of difference... over time i've got the clear impression you always feel it's a bother that you have to discuss things. It's not that you don't know you need to discuss points of contention, you've come through loud and clear for a long time now that it's more a case of, you can't be bothered discussing. You know better, but you often just can't be bothered. But that's not how wikipedia works. Wikipedia is a collaberative project. Perhaps you should reflect on that and your presence on wikipedia more broadly if that's the case, over such an extended period of time. If it took this long to get you to 'sometimes' go to talkpage for consensus discussion rather than edit war, how long exactly is it going to take for you to get up to speed on wikipedia's policies? Scary. Timeshift (talk) 16:23, 2 November 2014 (UTC)
Indeed, the infoboxes are crowded & would be less so, if those election links were removed. We wanna be different, isn't a good reason for keeping them. GoodDay (talk) 13:25, 2 November 2014 (UTC)
It's not as if removing them would de-crowd the infobox, the election links are but a half-line in size. Nobody said it's different for the purpose of being different. The links serve a valid purpose and have been there for a long time. Timeshift (talk) 16:23, 2 November 2014 (UTC)
Well I, and many other users just simply disagree with you. Andreas11213 (talk) 23:46, 2 November 2014 (UTC)
Andreas11213 you really don't know what consensus means, do you?The Tepes (talk) 03:13, 3 November 2014 (UTC)
I do, you mustn't. If you read above you would know that there is even consensus to both remove and retain the links. Andreas11213 (talk) 07:29, 3 November 2014 (UTC)
That's not what consensus means mate.The Tepes (talk) 09:20, 3 November 2014 (UTC)
Well I'm sick of adding to this conversation, it will just remain a deadlock. And I'm not your mate. Andreas11213 (talk) 00:59, 4 November 2014 (UTC)
I'm sure no one needs to remind you that in the case of a deadlock there is no consensus for change and that unless a policy reason can be found for the change (in which case you would need to gain consensus for your interpretation of policy) that the status quo is the order of the day. AlanStalk 12:48, 9 November 2014 (UTC)

Heidi Victoria[edit]

Extra eyes appreciated. Frickeg (talk) 22:08, 14 November 2014 (UTC)

Continued, very persistent insertion of dubious and unduly weighted "Controversies" section from an anon IP during an election campaign—hmmm. The points are referenced at least, but it's still a list of extremely minor incidents with no lasting consequence, and the anon's determination, focus on one particular subject's article, and accusations of "censorship" to editors who question or revert the inclusions demonstrate a general disregard for Wikipedia principles. --Canley (talk) 01:30, 20 November 2014 (UTC)
Yes, agreed. The anon has surely breached 3RR by now, as well. Frickeg (talk) 07:05, 20 November 2014 (UTC)

'popular vote' on election pages[edit]

I only just realised/looked at it - that in the infobox on election pages is 'popular vote'. This confused me because 53.5% people did not vote for the LNP and it doesn't mention 2PP. I figured even though fixing it up to say it was 2PP was easy - I figured I better talk it out here first. I just think it oddly suggests that he achieved a majority of votes which isn't the case. Might I add, not just Abbott, this 2PP 'popular vote' and % goes back through previous election results. Communistgoat (talk) 09:46, 15 November 2014 (UTC)

The infobox should contain the 2PP, not the meaningless primary vote. Timeshift (talk) 00:09, 16 November 2014 (UTC)
I agree, but it shouldn't say "popular vote", because that's completely misleading. It should say "two-party-preferred vote" or something similar. Frickeg (talk) 00:42, 16 November 2014 (UTC)
I would be OK with a renaming, but I don't agree "popular vote" is "misleading". Can you provide a reference that says popular vote only refers to the primary vote? The term is used as a contrast to things like the US electoral college vote. A 2PP/2CP is still a form of popular vote IMHO. It could even be said that in Australia, the 2PP/2CP is more of a popular vote than the primary, because it's the 2PP/2CP that elects candidates to seats, not the primary. Timeshift (talk) 00:44, 16 November 2014 (UTC)
I didn't say incorrect, only misleading; it clearly has two potential interpretations. It's not commonly used in Australia anyway, so a change makes sense. Frickeg (talk) 03:12, 16 November 2014 (UTC)

So that's agreement to modify the wording of 'popular vote' to perhaps '2PP vote'? Communistgoat (talk) 04:37, 16 November 2014 (UTC)

You'll have to make sure it doesn't affect other countries, since they won't have 2PP. I presume you're suggesting "two-party-preferred vote", since 2PP is not a well-known abbreviation generally. Frickeg (talk) 06:34, 16 November 2014 (UTC)
2PP would be the correct term for what's listed but I'm not sure of a better way of describing it. That is, without confusion having a potentially unknown acronym versus misleading 'popular vote' title. Ideas? Communistgoat (talk) 10:24, 20 November 2014 (UTC)

Victorian reshuffles[edit]

Would someone be able to go over Bracks Ministry, Brumby Ministry, Baillieu Ministry and Napthine Ministry and delineate their reshuffles, as with the federal ministries and other states? These four articles all show ministers who dropped a portfolio during a term as never having held it, and it's really confusing. I can have a shot at it later, but things involving tables freak me out a bit. The Drover's Wife (talk) 03:49, 4 December 2014 (UTC)

As far as I know, they did have start and end dates for reshuffles (I remember doing the Napthine one in May), but it looks like the same editor who moved the Napthine Ministry article to Ministry of Victoria (Australia) also helpfully "cleaned up" that list by removing the ex-ministers—Delahunty, Powell and Hall—entirely (I'm guessing to make it show the current ministry—which was pretty strange as the Napthine Ministry was only around for two more days!). But do you mean separate tables for each reshuffle? I'm pretty comfortable with tables so I could have a look at it, I'm pretty busy at the moment but I'll do what I can. --Canley (talk) 05:15, 4 December 2014 (UTC)
Aha. That explains the problem at Napthine Ministry, and a revert has fixed that. I've also found a source that fleshed out the reshuffles at Kirner Ministry, which makes that article make much more sense. There seems to still be some problems with Bracks Ministry and potentially Brumby Ministry - like the changeover in Aboriginal Affairs between Hamilton in Jennings is listed as happening in 2006 when it happened in 2002, and I wouldn't be surprised if there's other similar errors. If someone could find some clearer sources for the Bracks-Brumby government that would be awesome. The Drover's Wife (talk) 06:50, 4 December 2014 (UTC)
I've got state ministry lists going back a while somewhere on my computer, I'll try and dig them up and fix them up. --Canley (talk) 10:03, 4 December 2014 (UTC)
You are fabulous. The Drover's Wife (talk) 13:59, 4 December 2014 (UTC)

"Government" in Australian English[edit]

An editor is disputing the fact that "government" can refer to the successive ministries (collective executives) in Australian English, e.g. the Abbot government lost the election. I've provided a variety of sources, including the Macquarie Dictionary, but it doesn't seem he is keen to cease and desist. Third opinions would be appreciated. Please chime in at Talk:Government. RGloucester 23:01, 9 December 2014 (UTC)

I've posted a link there to Infosheet 20 from House of Representiatives Practice which refers to "the Executive Government (often simply called the Government or the Executive)" in this context. --Canley (talk) 23:48, 9 December 2014 (UTC)
This is completely silly. This is obviously verifiable with any Google search of any government in Australian history, and I think the editor is being a twit for the fun of it. The Drover's Wife (talk) 03:31, 10 December 2014 (UTC)
That's what I was thinking, as he's been trying to name numerous articles away from the word "government" because he says that "government" doesn't mean "government" in American English, and therefore can never appropriately be used to describe an executive body anywhere. Of course, I've provided numerous reliable sources in dictionaries and elsewhere, but that's not enough for him. For him, "the vast majority" of English speakers won't understand a translation of Gouvernement de la République française as "Government of France". They'll think that "government" cannot possibly mean the executive, and that instead the article must be titled "Cabinet of France", even though the French government is not a cabinet, as it includes junior ministers. RGloucester 04:09, 10 December 2014 (UTC)
He's reverted the inclusion of this definition again. I suppose he really thinks Australians don't know what a "government" is, given that tons of sources don't placate him. RGloucester 07:43, 10 December 2014 (UTC)

NSW and Qld candidates[edit]

For those chomping at the bit for more electoral politics after the excitement of Victoria, I've started draft candidate pages in userspace for next year's elections in NSW and Queensland. I feel it might be a bit early for them to be in mainspace, but feel free to make any additions or corrections in the meantime. Frickeg (talk) 23:38, 14 December 2014 (UTC)

Politician party categories[edit]

Currently, Category:Australian politicians by party is a bit of a mess. The Liberal and National categories have been split by state (but with an awkward situation where the federal members remain in the parent category), whereas everyone else is mashed together (there are more than 2,000 pages in the Labor category). Furthermore, it has become quite common to see people who were merely members of the party or candidates, but who never held elected office, being included, despite the fact that these people are not really "politicians". In light of that, I would like to make a cautious proposal (which I assume will have to be taken to CfD at some stage, but I haven't the faintest idea how that works so let's start here):

  • The current "X Party politicians" categories to be renamed "X Party members" or "Members of the X Party". Non-politician members to reside in this parent category.
  • Politicians to be divided by parliament rather than state. So the subcats would be "X Party members of the Australian Parliament", "X Party members of the New South Wales Parliament", etc.

I look forward to further suggestions/improvements, and also anyone who knows what they're doing with the whole CfD process and how this could be done. Frickeg (talk) 02:16, 15 December 2014 (UTC)

Okay, so.
I don't really agree with the first part: not only do I think people don't care about who was a non-elected member of which party but it's extremely difficult to verify.
I think the second part is a really good idea. I feel like breaking it down further into houses of parliament might make sense for Labor/Liberal/National but it would get silly even for the Greens; I also wonder if you'd bother breaking down categories into states for parties like the DLP, Shooters and Fishers or One Nation at all.
I think this also raises a bit of a headache about what to do with e.g. the early Country Party MPs who died before the National Party was a thing, and that this might need to be taken into account in the naming of these categories. The Drover's Wife (talk) 04:37, 15 December 2014 (UTC)
I do feel like there needs to be some place for non-elected people though - I was prompted into it after I created Kiernan Dorney today and he was added to the DLP politicians category, which isn't really accurate. I mean obviously it would need to be supported and cited in the text of the article for them to go in the category, but it does seem reasonable especially in minor parties where very few people were actually elected. I am very much open to other suggestions on this though.
I take the point about minor parties. The reason I was thinking parliament rather than chamber is that there are so many people who switch between both (perhaps less so federally but in the states a significant number), so I thought it would be easier to just have the single category. Not sure if the size would be prohibitive. But I agree that it probably isn't necessary to divide anyone other than the major parties, the Greens, the Democrats and maybe the historical DLP.
On historical parties, the situation is currently even more of a mess, especially since there aren't even categories for a lot of the state-level parties (e.g. Liberal Reform Party, Democratic Party (1943)). With the Country Party since it was a name change I think it's reasonable to include them all in the Nationals category (with a note in the category of course), whereas with the UAP or the Nationalists it was an actual new party. Frickeg (talk) 07:44, 15 December 2014 (UTC)
I had a think about the unsuccessful candidates issue, and the one that makes me think it might be a good idea is the CPA - considering there are a crapload of notable people who were unsuccessful candidates for them. What if we literally had an "unsuccessful candidates for X Party" category - since that's what these people actually have in common (we don't necessarily know anything about their party membership)? The Drover's Wife (talk) 09:03, 15 December 2014 (UTC)
I think that's a good idea, although it still leaves some gaps. What about someone like Paul Howes, who clearly belongs in an ALP category somewhere but can't go in either of those options. Or would it be appropriate to place him in the ALP politicians parent category? I guess he's kind of a politician? If we did that, then we could have (say for the Labor Party):
  • a parent category as "Australian Labor Party politicians" (or alternative name)
    • subcategories for each of the state parliaments
    • "Unsuccessful candidates for the Australian Labor Party"
    • Maybe we could also have an "Australian Labor Party officials" for, say, Jamie Clements (a redlink!? Will have to do something about that!)?
    • and "Australian Labor Party mayors"/"Australian Labor Party local councillors" or something similar, for, say, Tim Quinn? (Obviously there would be some doubling up with these last two categories and the parliamentary ones.)
The only people that leaves out is people whose notability has nothing to do with the ALP (or whatever party) and just happen to be members. Someone like, say, Kerry O'Brien (not the senator) with the ALP. Or even Tony Abbott with the DLP. Or maybe they don't need to go in any party-related category? There probably aren't that many of them we could verify. Frickeg (talk) 10:17, 15 December 2014 (UTC)
Really good points. I think having Australian Labor Party politicians as the main category, and subcategories for members of each state parliament, unsuccessful candidates, officials, and mayors would sort this problem nicely, and work out as a much better and clearer solution than what we have now. (I don't see the need for a councillors one unless you can think of a partisan councillor who meets none of the above and is still notable. I was also wracking my brain about the Quinn case until I remembered NSW does partisan mayors too, outside of Sydney City.)
I don't think we need one for the O'Briens and Abbotts - it'd be a pain to verify, it's not terribly notable as something to group them by, and it'd be an ongoing pest with BLP issues. I also think the mayors question brings up issues we need to be wary about around those in states that don't technically have partisan councillors (i.e. Victoria) - like, Greg Barber was very obviously a Greens mayor but what about someone like Darryn Lyons? The Drover's Wife (talk) 14:20, 15 December 2014 (UTC)
Hmm, I'm not sure about Lyons. He's clearly a Liberal though, so it would be good to get him into the categories somewhere. The councillors one I take your point; I think again the minor parties would be the issue (some of those Communist councillors, for example), but I'm pretty sure they all ran for election at federal or state level at some point so we can pop them in the unsuccessful candidates category (although that makes it kind of a misnomer since they were successful at something. Maybe "Candidates for the Australian Labor Party", with a note at the top that it excludes those elected to state or federal office?). I think you make a good point about the other categories and we can leave them out. I'll leave this here for a few days to see if there are any other suggestions and then will attempt to navigate CfD and figure out how we get this done. (Although if anyone is familiar with how all that works please feel free to do so instead!) Frickeg (talk) 22:24, 15 December 2014 (UTC)
Really like the idea of the unsuccessful candidates categories, however I will suggest they be called Unelected Candidates, rather than the negative unsuccessful, I guess they were successful in winning pre-selection. Screech1616 (talk) 01:59, 16 December 2014 (UTC)
Agree with this suggestion - it also makes it a good bit clearer too.
I'm a bit iffy about the general candidates one: it's a bit vague I think it'd need continual pruning from people putting successful candidates in there, but it's also less negative than unsuccessful or unelected. (Another thought - what about current notable candidates - your Cameron Murphys?) It also affects a really small amount of people: I wonder if a good category description couldn't deal with the case of people who manage to a) be unsuccessful partisan candidates for higher office, b) be successful candidates for a local office that isn't mayor, and c) still maintain notability. I also wonder if these people mightn't be better off going down a councillors path after all. The Drover's Wife (talk) 04:10, 16 December 2014 (UTC)

@Frickeg:: This discussion seems to have run its course - worth taking through the CfD process now? The Drover's Wife (talk) 11:09, 23 December 2014 (UTC)

I agree. I will tackle that process ... after Christmas, I think. :) Frickeg (talk) 12:52, 23 December 2014 (UTC)

An interim leader is not a Leader of the Opposition[edit]

Some help would be appreciated please. Robertson stood down as Labor leader on 23 December 2014, with Linda Burney serving as interim Labor leader. The Labor caucus will meet on 5 January 2015 to elect a new leader to succeed Robertson as Leader of the Opposition. The Leader of the Opposition can only be so once elected by the party. Neither Burney, nor Chris Bowen, are/were elected by their party as leaders and are/were thus not Leaders of the Opposition. There would be many many interim leaders, federal and state, who aren't listed as Leaders of the Opposition, nor should they be. Some seem to have difficulties grasping this. Am I correct or not? Timeshift (talk) 08:02, 23 December 2014 (UTC)

I'm inclined to agree after checking the parliamentary sources. I wasn't sure in Bowen's case in particular (because of the delayed period during the leadership election) if he'd been formally recognised as Leader of the Opposition, but the parliamentary website just lists no one for that period. I can't find an equivalent list for NSW, but for the states I can it seems to be the same. The Drover's Wife (talk) 11:08, 23 December 2014 (UTC)
I can understand the confusion arising, since the new Labor rules federally mean the interim leaders stand in for much longer than they used to. I looked up Harriet Harman to see how the Brits do it, and I do quite like their system with "acting leader" underneath the deputy leader section of the infobox. (It would appear that for the UK the acting leader is the official leader of the opposition, so that may be contributing to the confusion too.) Frickeg (talk) 12:54, 23 December 2014 (UTC)

Poll Bludger as a reliable source[edit]

Following a discussion on Timeshift's talk page, I realised the other day that we'd never had a discussion about whether The Poll Bludger is a reliable source for Wikipedia purposes.

I strongly feel that it should be: William Bowe is probably the second foremost election analyst in the country beyond Antony Green, the foremost on the areas Green doesn't cover, and the ABC's stand-in when Green isn't available (such as when there are simultaneous state elections). He's a well-regarded academic source and I see no reason why we shouldn't be able to cite him directly. The Drover's Wife (talk) 11:14, 23 December 2014 (UTC)

Agree on this one, should we also consider Antony Green's Election Blog, it is written more in an article format and very informative. Screech1616 (talk) 13:00, 23 December 2014 (UTC)
I would agree. In fact there are a number of so-called "blogs" that we could cite quite safely as reliable sources - I'm thinking of Peter Brent and Kevin Bonham, to name but a few. Guideline-wise we are actually covered for Bowe and Brent, etc., by WP:NEWSBLOG, since they're both published by recognised news sources. Bonham et al. I think are covered by the final paragraph of WP:USERG, with a caveat that they are not acceptable sources for WP:BLPs, which seems fair enough. Frickeg (talk) 13:02, 23 December 2014 (UTC)
I agree that Crikey and other blogs above should be WP:RS. But i'm not sure that we can exclude them for WP:BLPs. For example, this might be suitable for the article on the MP, but not for the article on the seat. Thoughts? Timeshift (talk) 23:42, 23 December 2014 (UTC)
How are details about how pre-selection is conducted not suitable for the article on the seat? Especially in relation to the information that was added here, it gives a great insight into the fascinating inner workings of the major parties.
I also agree that the Poll Bludger blog qualifies as a RS as William Bowe is a recognised expert (by the ABC, among others) on the topics he covers. Nick-D (talk) 23:52, 23 December 2014 (UTC)
I don't understand Timeshift's last comment about BLPs? I interpreted what Frickeg was suggesting as being that Bowe and Brent were fine generally, and Bonham and such acceptable but not on BLPs. I don't see that source as being any different for either the seat or the MP - especially in safe seats, Labor preselection shenanigans are basically the whole deal in telling the history of a seat. The Drover's Wife (talk) 00:16, 24 December 2014 (UTC)
I also interpreted what Frickeg said as the same. Acceptable, but not on BLPs. Timeshift (talk) 00:22, 24 December 2014 (UTC)
...but with Bowe and Brent as acceptable on BLPs? The Drover's Wife (talk) 03:48, 24 December 2014 (UTC)
That was how I interpreted the guideline, yes. I would think Bowe & Brent would be fine to use in BLPs, in general. Frickeg (talk) 04:38, 24 December 2014 (UTC)

New consensus required for dated contribution RE Greens are crossbench, not opposition.[edit]

The Parliament of Tasmania article has an editor claiming a new consensus is required due to length of time, to have the Greens listed as on the crossbench, and not party of her majesty's loyal opposition. The opposition has the opposition leader, the crossbench and the Greens do not. We don't work with media characterisations, we work with facts. Tasmanian House of Assembly has it right. Can I please have motions of support? Timeshift (talk) 03:57, 24 December 2014 (UTC)

Hang on, shouldn't this discussion happen on the article talk page? I will gladly discuss it, but let's do it in the appropriate place. Colonial Overlord (talk) 04:07, 24 December 2014 (UTC)
My understanding is that in Westminster system countries the convention is that largest non-government party/coalition is considered to be the "opposition". The distinction is generally clear in Australia (where it's whichever of the Labour or LNP who aren't in power). Nick-D (talk) 09:54, 24 December 2014 (UTC)

Broken navigation boxes[edit]

The navigation boxes between lists of members of individual parliaments used to be centred, and were designed that way. Now, though, the code doesn't seem to work and they are left-aligned, and look quite strange. Any chance that someone who is a bit more technically aligned could fix this? The Drover's Wife (talk) 09:32, 24 December 2014 (UTC)

Which template(s) is it? I can't see the issue in navboxes like Template:AusFedMPs. --Canley (talk) 10:25, 24 December 2014 (UTC)
That template shows as left-aligned on my machine (when it is in place on a page, that is), and has been for a long time. If that's not a general thing...that's an issue I've never seen before. The Drover's Wife (talk) 10:37, 24 December 2014 (UTC)
They look normal to me too. Do you mean that the entire box is left aligned, or that it's left aligned within the box? Frickeg (talk) 10:42, 24 December 2014 (UTC)
Entire box. The Drover's Wife (talk) 11:10, 24 December 2014 (UTC)