More responses to my reading of Chantal Mouffe, valid for both Australia and Malaysia...
I want a political system that looks to the future, not to the past. That stops subsidising private transport, but guarantees free health-care for all, not just citizens or permanent residents. Citizens aren't the only ones paying taxes, and a sick migrant can infect a dozen healthy citizens. It's false economy to pretend we have a cordon sanitaire around those with rights and those without. That doesn't subsidise private education, or violent education, or racist inhumane education, and invests in sustainable and renewable energy, particularly for the poorest in society. It eases the transition away from coal, petrol and gas for miners, not for bosses. Perhaps a start would be a commitment to solar or hydro energy in remote communities, and helping people within the communities learn how to install and maintain systems, creating jobs and improving the sustainability of lifestyles even on a low income. A commitment to solar and heat exchange for public housing (and a commitment to public housing).
I want a government that works towards a four-day week, and prioritises small business who put money back into the community over transnational corporations who provide crap jobs. We produce more than we need, there is no reason why a minority can suck up all that wealth, while those at the bottom fight over fewer and fewer low-paid jobs, where production is mechanised. Perhaps this can be done through incentives to model co-operatives, ones that might provide a real challenge to the monopolies of some of the larger sectors.
I want a government that is concerned about the supply chain, because the world is inter-connected. Rather than funding either a massive aid budget or overseas military adventures, let's look at getting large companies to invest in their supply chain. Maybe a tax, or incentives for those over a certain profit margin. This could be related to the move to a four-day week.... Money could be spent on health and safety in factories overseas, and that could be translated into tax credits in Australia. Likewise on the sourcing of goods – a sustainable supply chain moves you into a different tax bracket. Let's try and think up imaginative solutions.
This is only possible if we reform democracy – Mouffe's main point in what I'm reading now – so that it incorporates politics once more, rather than just government. We need to think about, and demand, what we want – and force politicians to listen.
The point of stating this isn't to provoke agreement, but to provoke thought – another political system is possible. There are a lot of people trying to show how it can be done, in Syria for instance. Do we have to wait until people are so disillusioned with democracy that they abandon it entirely before we look at why?