March 25 was, of course, a very dark day for Queensland.
The unprecedented swing to the Liberal-National Party is already showing that it will mean massive cuts to the public sector and brutal attacks on the unions.
It will mean increased environmental degradation and unnecessary and destructive development. It will mean the wholesale spreading of coal seam gas across the country, increase in coal production (Queensland is already the biggest exporter in the world) and the final annihilation of Gladstone Harbour.
It will mean further attacks on the unemployed, the homeless, the disabled. It will mean increasing the discourse of hate against Aboriginal people and other minorities.
I don't think Queensland people know what they are in for. They were rightly pissed off at Anna Bligh and the ALP hacks for selling off the state's assets and being too deeply in the pocket of big business - in short for betraying us (as we know is their nature). But because our system is structurally rigged for a completely pathetic two-party cycle of bourgeois parties - the LNP and the ALP - what they have got to replace Anna Bligh is worse.
The Socialist Alliance ran a solid campaign, which stood in absolute opposition to these bourgeois parties, in three electorates - South Brisbane, Sandgate and Dalrymple.
We made some good ground in each of them improving on our 2009 vote: from 1.3% to 1.6 in Sandgate; from 1.5% to 1.9 in the seat of South Brisbane, and gaining a foothold of 0.6% in the seat of Dalrymple - the heart of “Katter Country”- with ex-ALP candidate Jason Briskey.
These figures, while humble, represent a significant outcome given the context.
It seems as though there are already around a thousand people across this state who want to consider real alternatives. We need to turn that into hundreds of thousands and then millions.
But we're not deluded: the real struggle (re)starts now - it has always already begun.
It doesn't happen in parliament. Elections by themselves will never bring real change. Real change begins on the streets, it happens in the campaigns and social movements. It takes place in the fight back against capitalist austerity and political repression. It starts as a response to a terrible situation, but it continues because of an idea of the future, an idea of equality.
The idea must take place in reality, and only the people are capable of this. See you at the next rally, the next picket, the next Occupy.
[Liam Flenady was the Socialist Alliance candidate for South Brisbane.]