Pork barrelling is made possible by Australia’s electoral system, based on Single Member Electoral Districts.
Many Australians are not aware of alternatives.
In Multi Member District systems, used with proportional representation – party list, pork barrelling is simply not doable.
This system is practised in 89 countries.
Apart from that advantage there are no by-elections.
Voters have one vote only but a greater choice of parties.
Above all, it is a much fairer system in that parties gain seats in proportion to the votes they receive.
PR also promotes cooperation between parties, to achieve majority government, resulting in a quite different culture as compared to the adversarial battles that characterise “politics” in Australia.
Yes, pork barrelling is not illegal but it is highly unethical and adding to the mounting distrust in the political system.
Australians need to start taking an interest in alternative ways of practicing democracy.
Pork barrelling is of course highly unethical and undemocratic.
It makes a mockery of democracy.
Email, Nov 30
Klaas Woldring, Pearl Beach