Tony Abbott will inevitably be Prime Minister by Saturday night, but you can still have fun with your vote and make it count. And based on that time-honoured Australian tradition of self-interest, VICE has compiled this handy how-to-vote card so you know you're doing what's best for the most important person in the world – you!
I'm a rich woman of child-bearing age with a highly paid job
House of Reps: Probably doesn't matter because you live in Malcolm Turnbull, Tony Abbott or Joe Hockey's seat. But vote for them.
You have the most to gain from a Coalition Government. If you spend the next two years trying to bump your income up to $150,000 the only thing standing between you and a $75,000 6-month holiday in Thailand is getting pregnant. Find a nice man, do the right thing and get married (your parents are most likely very conservative), have some sex and bingo! You've taken $75,000 away from the taxpayers of Australia. For that you can live in a beautiful bungalow on the beach somewhere like Koh Samui with three full-time nannies so you and your husband can get to know each other and practice your yoga. Plus, with 6 months off his job your husband's taxable income will be negligible too! Not only do you get the most, you also give the least. Wins all round. And if you happen to be Frances or Bridgit Abbott, go for it, don't feel bad that your dad made billion dollar policies that will benefit you, you deserve it after what you've gone through these past few months.
I'm a small business owner considering having a child
House of Reps: Liberal
Like the previous voter, you have a lot to gain by rorting the paid parental leave scheme, and you've got two years to plan it out. If you're a man, work your ass off now so that the business is bringing in enough money to employ your wife or partner and pay them $150,000 for ten months. You can cut your own salary to whatever the lowest tax bracket is to make some savings. If you're a woman, do what you can to bump up your own salary – can you sack anyone? Can you give up your charity donations? The gains from the money you'll get in the end to spend on your precious bundle of joy (and yourself) are much greater than the tax breaks you get from giving money to rotary or the lions club or whoever it is rich people give money to. You'll also be helped by the 1.5 per cent company tax cut from Abbott. He really is a great person to have in Government when you're wealthy.
I live in a marginal seat in Western Sydney or Queensland
House of Reps: Whichever party you think fewer people will vote for
You are responsible for getting Tony Abbott in, and you're one of the few people whose vote actually matters. It's a tricky thing though – your goal is to keep the seat you live in as marginal as possible. You might have noticed that since your seat became a tight race all of a sudden roads are being built, there's a government office in town so you can get a dull but well-paid job, your kids' school has a new hall, and there's a new cosmetic surgery unit at the local hospital. The Labor Government did all that, but that doesn't mean you have to vote for them. If you can keep your seat marginally Liberal, the new Government will try just as hard to make you like them. You live in one of the only areas where you can come up with a bizarre plan for the area and if you can show it might win votes you'll most likely get it. The people of Penrith had become frustrated with the lack of variety and availability of the hundreds of pokie machines at the enormous Panthers club, and have managed to get both the major parties to agree to build a brand new $12 million sports club right next door! No longer will they have to suffer the inconvenience of not being able to play Dolphin Treasure because some other schmuck beat you to it. Just go next door!
Your power, though, is only in the House of Reps. Given you're most likely not very rich (well you might be if you didn't spend all your money at Panthers), probably in a low paid job or a trade or a farmer, your kids go to public schools and you don't have private health insurance, having Tony Abbott control the Senate could be a problem. He's promised not to cut all the things you need, like health and education, and he's promised not to tamper with workers' rights, and he's promised not to raise the GST. But just to be on the safe side, keep Labor in the Senate so that if he ever does break any of those promises it will be really difficult for him to get the legislation through.
I live in Kennedy or Fairfax
House of Reps: Bob Katter or Clive Palmer
Senate: Anyone but the PUP (Palmer United Party)
Bob Katter is way cool and has shown he's a true independent in the House of Reps. Clive Palmer is neither cool nor competent, but he would make parliament a lot more entertaining. But, you certainly don't want his party in the Senate. That August institution would lose all its floundering credibility if a football player who is still learning to make sentences gets in. As it stands both Labor and Liberal will get two of the six seats up for grabs, and the Greens one. The last seat will be won by either the Coalition or one of the minor parties, so try to make it a race between the Greens and the KAP.
I'm an asylum seeker
House of Reps: Ha! Yeah right.
Senate: See above
You don't get to vote here and you never will if you came on a boat. Regardless of who wins you're going to wait for at least a year to get an appointment with immigration, and then another year while they do security checks that could be done in a day. But hey, you can go and vote in your own country, right? What, you got kidnapped and beaten up for voting the wrong way in your country and that's why you're here? Um. Ok. Well maybe if you stopped causing so many traffic jams we'd be more sympathetic. Some of us have to get to work, you know?
I'm an indigenous person in a remote community
House of Reps: Labor
Really? You're reading VICE in Papanya or Yuendumu? No, probably not but on the off chance you've driven into town to check your emails or your share portfolio, vote Labor purely for the NBN. Neither major party will ever stop pouring money into your community despite the fact that there will never be any jobs or industry there, so there's no need to worry about that. But having fast, cheap internet can change some of the annoying things about living in a remote place, and Labor is rolling out the NBN in remote areas as a priority.
I'm a self-funded retiree with an aluminium smelter in my backyard
House of Reps: Liberal
Senate: The Sex Party
Ok you know you're going to get in trouble when your wife sees you looking at a website that has the word 'dickslapped' as a headline so you should probably stop reading now.
I'm a mining magnate with annoying children and extreme hate for everyone
House of Reps: Liberal
Judging from those few details I'd say you should vote to get rid of the mining tax, carbon tax, and all other taxes so you can go from being the richest person in Australia to being the richest person in the world. You probably can't get rid of the annoying kids, but you can force the Government to make cuts to that other annoyance in your life, the ABC. And if you can't get rid of all those taxes, have you considered having another child?
I'm Rupert Murdoch
House of Reps: You're an American now. Der.
Senate: See above
If you're Rupert Murdoch you've already cast your vote by making your newspapers propaganda tools for Tony Abbott, and because you're now responsible for his win you have a lot to gain – he owes you, big time. Make the most of it by pressuring the Government to make it more difficult for other media companies to get ahead, keep the internet slow enough that it's just easier to get Foxtel than to try and stream TV shows, and get them to charge Google way more tax – they keep getting in the way with their free content and innovation, and they're simply too big to just buy and destroy.
I'm a young person/student/freelance journalist/advocate/social worker/artist
House of reps: I wouldn't dare tell you what to do.
Senate: See above
You're really frustrating to the political parties because despite your low income and the fact that you probably live under the poverty line, you can't help but care more about other people than yourself. That's just not how politics works. You don't make sense in any economic analysis. You'll spend $100 out of your $400 a month income on donations to Medicins Sans Frontieres and random homeless people, and then live on 2-minute noodles. You'll do PhDs on things that won't ever get you a job. You'd rather get paid $40,000 a year to do a job that helps people than $80,000 working in a company like a regular person. You don't save up money to get a mortgage, you save up so you can volunteer for an NGO that helps disabled Indonesians sell craft. Your decisions just don't make any sense to most politicians who are used to people being happy when they get free stuff. You refuse to bring children into such a cruel world, despite your favourable genes. You do annoying things like demand costings, and details about policies. And then you wonder why the major parties don't ever do what you want. I mean FFS: the biggest cuts the Coalition will make are to that one thing you cherish most – giving Australian money away to poor people overseas.
You already know how you're voting because you're politically aware and you don't want to see the Great Barrier Reef destroyed and you don't want other human beings locked up indefinitely when their only crime is upsetting marginal seat voters and you don't want Tasmania's forests destroyed and you already know that the most important thing you can do is vote Greens in the Senate because they just might be able to stop some of those things from happening.
I'm former Prime Minister Julia Gillard
House of Reps: It might be too late, but change your address to one in Griffith and vote for Bill Glasson, just because he's an excellent candidate.
Senate: Number every box, in random order. You know you have time.
Follow Carly on Twitter: @carlylearson
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