I will work through this in reverse order.
I thought gun control Laws were pretty popular. They can do tax reform now? People want infrastructure, they just have to be sensible proposals. At the moment we can't stop the government doing stuff like signing the TPP which would make our platform impossible to implement without withdrawing from the agreement first. They have been able to pass data retention, website blocking etc. without any of these being good for the country or necessarily what the population desires. With a more representative parliament, these things would be much more difficult, which would be a good thing.
I think regulating the media to mandate 'balance' checking is an impingement on free speech. I don't like News Ltd one bit, but I just avoid paying attention to it. Telling journalists what to write is creating propaganda, even if you believe you are objectively correct and forcing them to publish the truth. The right wing media have lost, and will continue to lose viewers/ readers/ listeners as alternatives grow on the Internet and criticism of their bullshit is shared on social media.
On the Republic issue, if we are seriously modifying the Constitution, getting rid of irrational stuff like the Monarchy seems to be minor and obvious IMO. That said, it is somewhat tangential and 'window dressing' compared to how the political system actually functions. It is complicated by the fact a lot of power is Constitutionally invested in the Governor General, it is just not common practice for them to wield any. When they do, such as the Whitlam dismissal, there is outrage and a Constitutional crisis.
If anyone wants to raise it in a separate thread arguing for or against a Republic, go for it.
We have a Constitutional requirement that all candidates have to sign the following statement (Part 3 7.6a):
I hereby pledge to advance and adhere to the platform and ideals of Pirate Party Australia, both during the election campaign and upon election to Parliament.
If they cross the floor on something in our platform they are likely kicked out of the Party. We expect candidates to support our platform, otherwise they shouldn't be candidates. Outside of our platform wouldn't be an issue, I shouldn't think. If you want a separate debate on this, I suggest starting another thread.
I like Brendan's Twitter rant, will mash comments in with MarkG's comments below.
I like this generally. I can see the use of some sort of regional government layer. This could even just be a structure for local government co-operation, there are issues in land-use etc that affect nearby communities. A really obvious example is the Murray River. There would also need to be infrastructure sharing and co-operation. Transportation needs co-operation to ensure people can get where they want to, without having to change trains (using the NSW-Victoria train-lines having used different gauge tracks until the 90's as an example of why co-operation is needed).
Mixed member proportional representation looks okay, I haven't looked into it too deeply, but it seems like a good idea. I definitely like the idea of the Federal representative sitting on regional and local government bodies.
Only issue here is the exact method we use to determine the make-up of the parliament. This could probably the basis of another thread. If someone wants to start it, go for it.
Yes, Prime Minister is a caricature of politics, not a documentary. It was written by one of Thatcher's advisors and had a specific ideological agenda (the headline overblows it a bit, but the point still stands). I always interpreted that episode to be about how Socialists claim to want democracy but they actually want a set of policies enacted, which the voters probably wouldn't support if they had a direct say, which was why the woman pushing for it stopped after her chat with Humphrey.
That said, changing politics to have delegates rather than representatives is a huge change which should probably be left out of this debate and re-visited should we ever get our own participatory democracy system running successfully. I don't think any work has been done on it for some time.