The Pirate Party’s commitment to privacy and digital rights is reflected by it topping the election scorecards of Electronic Frontiers Australia[1], Digital Rights Watch[2], and the Australian Privacy Foundation[3]. As the closing arguments of the first website blocking case under section 115A of the Copyright Act was heard in the Federal Court, the Pirate Party seeks to put digital rights and freedoms of the 2016 federal election agenda.

“This is precisely the type of court case that the Pirate Party was formed to try to stop,” said Victorian Senate Candidate Lachlan Simpson. “Censorship of the Internet is not something that should be tolerated in a free society regardless of threats to media business models. We now live in an information rich world, and it is incumbent upon media organisations to adapt to the technology rather than try to lock it up behind court-enforced website blocking that is, in practice, largely ineffective. Censoring the Internet to try to limit access to content is akin to scribes wanting to ban the printing press to ensure their jobs.”

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“Pirate Party Australia is pleased to announce our basic income policy,[1]” said NSW senate candidate Sam Kearns. “Technology is going to impact on work in many ways, abolishing many jobs that currently employ thousands of people. Work will become increasingly uncertain and many people will find themselves without the means to survive.[2] We have a choice as a society, do we want to create an antagonism between workers and the machines that are replacing them? Or do we want to ease the social cost of automation by ensuring everyone has a solid economic foundation that reduces the economic and social damage of people losing their job?”

“The current welfare system is woefully inadequate to deal with these coming changes,” Mr Kearns continued. “Where other parties support people languishing on the dole, barely able to keep their heads above water, we propose granting all Australians a basic income regardless of situation. This will reduce the labyrinthine bureaucracy running our social security system and provide certainty for anyone unfortunate enough to lose their job.”
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Pirate Party Australia has completed its initial member ballot for our preference orders for the 2016 federal election.

These results will inform the parties and voting order we suggest on our How to Vote materials and will influence any possible deals made with other parties.

In keeping with the Pirate Party’s commitment to transparency and participatory democracy, last election the Party pioneered a form of preferencing unprecedented in Australian politics. We have continued to use that process for subsequent elections and this election.

We sent all full members of the party an electronic ballot in which they could rank all registered parties* in order of how they should be preferenced. The ballot allowed for equal rankings and to leave parties with no vote to rank them equal last.

Should any party offer us deals that result in changing this order we are able to run subsequent ballots state by state to approve any such deals.

A final decision on how many parties we list on our How to Vote materials will be made soon.

The resulting order of party preferences are as follows:

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“Pirate Party Australia is proud to announce that digital rights are central to our campaign in the 2016 Federal election. Campaigning under the slogan ‘Transparency Liberty Digital Rights,’ or TLDR (Too Long Didn’t Read), we aim to reverse the trend of governments operating under an increasingly dense veil of secrecy, whilst subjecting citizens to increasingly intrusive surveillance.” said Lachlan Simpson, Pirate Party candidate for the Victorian Senate.

“The Internet has been under attack from successive governments. The Abbott/Turnbull government has passed a mass surveillance regime and legislation to enable Internet censorship, with the support of the ALP,” continued Lachlan. “We pledge to fight tirelessly for Internet freedom. Pirate Party Australia has an extensive platform on digital liberties[1] and was formed precisely to oppose such attacks on our rights.”

Since 9/11 Australia has passed more than 40 different terrorism related pieces of legislation. These have generally been passed with bi-partisan support and include many attacks on basic human rights[2]. We are now under warrantless mass surveillance[3], journalists can be jailed for reporting on investigations[4], citizens can be detained without charge[5] and ASIO can theoretically hack the entire Internet under a single warrant[6]. Continue reading

The Pirate Party has completed it’s pre-selection process and can now announce its candidates for the 2016 Federal Election. In keeping with the Party’s democratic principles, all members were entitled to nominate themselves, and all members were entitled to vote on the preselection of candidates in their state.

The Pirate Party will be contesting for the Senate in New South Wales, Queensland and Victoria, as well as the House of Representatives seat of Bennelong. The party will receive its own column on the Senate ballot, as there are two candidates for each state they are contesting.

The campaign will be using the slogan “Transparency, Liberty and Digital Rights” or TLDR (Too Long; Didn’t Read in ‘Netspeak) and will be focused on providing an alternative narrative to terror, corruption and surveillance being peddled by the major Parties.
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