Where next for quo­tas?

The Australian - - COMMENTARY -

The most sen­si­ble way of se­lect­ing po­lit­i­cal can­di­dates is on merit, but when I ob­serve our elected rep­re­sen­ta­tives in ac­tion I soon re­alise that we have no re­li­able way of mea­sur­ing po­lit­i­cal merit, so have to give se­ri­ous con­sid­er­a­tion to quo­tas to avoid gen­der bias in par­lia­ment.

But what quo­tas? Male and fe­male are the ob­vi­ous ones, but why not for all the other gen­der iden­ti­ties we have nowa­days? And what about racial, re­li­gious, age and other so­cio-eco­nomic cat­e­gories?

It is clear that the whole busi­ness is ridicu­lous — there is no sub­sti­tute for tal­ent and train­ing. If we can’t de­velop a merit-based sys­tem of se­lect­ing can­di­dates, we are doomed to con­tin­u­ing po­lit­i­cal and eco­nomic chaos. David Barker, Bun­bury, WA

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