BY GABRIELLE MAYNARD
“The Body Politic” is a Western Australian blog, providing coverage of the Australian political environment (specifically Federal Government, WA Government and UWA student politics) with regular updates regarding polls, leadership and political structures.
The author is a 19-year-old Arts (Political Science and Communications) student and ex-WA Young Liberal, who is engaged and active in the state political landscape.
The blog provides in-depth coverage of all politics in WA. This is extremely useful for students of politics and international relations at all universities in the state because they can keep up-to-date with politics as presented by a like-minded student.
Although limited to UWA politics at a university level, the blog allows for opinion pieces and editorials to inform on issues not seen as imperative to the average student.
Currently as the UWA guild elections near (it is interesting and useful to note that UWA has the most active and largest guild in Australia), much of the coverage on student politics is in reference to this. This does mean, however, student have the ability to educate and inform themselves on the workings of the campaign and what parties actually stand for. This is extremely useful in a university environment with a guild as important as that of UWA.
At a state level, the blog provides in-depth analysis of many aspects of the political landscape in WA. The clever headlines (“It’s just a jump to the left, not a step to the right – February 1st 2011”) and easy-to-understand articles engage the readers, informing them while remaining “light” and funny to hold readers’ interests.
My favourite part of this blog is the federal level analysis because it provides a fresh approach to issues surrounding Canberra, while again presenting them in an easy-to-understand way that is engaging and informative.
The blogger presents information, such as polls, in a way which cuts through all the political language and allows everyday voters to be engaged with the important information without being overwhelmed by the “elitism” surrounding politics.
As aforementioned, I find this extremely useful because it allows otherwise apathetic and disengaged voters to understand polls, issues, language and information surrounding politics while having this, at all levels in Australia, in one place.
Again, there is no commercial or legislative pressure on the blogger to taint his or her views, making the articles and opinions refreshing and informed by fact, not pandering.
The blog also links to a Facebook site, which allows readers to become involved in polls and submit their opinions to the blog, while linking to articles from various news outlets in Australia, adding professional opinion and media to their arguments and ideas.