Flux touched down in UC for the first time last year, starting its own club for supporters here on campus.
The unique party aims to elect members who will place their vote in parliament based solely on the votes of its members.
Co-founded with Max Kaye, the party has no base in traditional politics, opting out from policies formed solely by the party and passing power back to the public through issue-based direct democracy.
“At Flux, we have no policy positions on absolutely anything whatsoever, the organisation itself is completely politically neutral, the only thing that we’re really focused on and committed towards is the advance of a new system of democracy that we call issue-based direct democracy,” says Nathan.
The Flux voting system allows for members to swap out votes on issues that they may not care about or have knowledge on in exchange for votes on the issues that matter to them most.
“Because we live in quiet a complex society, we have specialised sectors and industries and the scope of decisions that we need to make are quite broad”, says Nathan.
The aim is to allow interest in and knowledge on issues to thrive rather than “career politicians making decisions on the whole scale of issues our political system covers,” as Nathan says.
With Nathan and Max coming from a background in tech, the pair have a developed a voting system which uses block-chain technology to enable this system.
Just like Bitcoin, the driving technology is distributed across a public network to ensure anonymity and security.
“This idea is really not possible without the tech that we’ve invented to build around it,” says Nathan.
A recent explosion in interest in the world of block chain technology, driven by Bitcoin investment, has helped spark interest from the general-public about the kinds of technology behind the voting system of Flux.
With current memberships sitting at 6887, Nathan is optimistic about the future of Flux.
“Flux is really a lot more than a political party in the way that most people think of it. Flux is really more of a political movement of expression. What we’re really trying to do is change the way people think about what democracy is and ways in which we can actually interact with democracy for better outcomes for society”.
So why would individuals make the move over to Flux?
“Right now if you’re, say, a marginal group…you’ve got to then overcome the behemoth of one of the two parties to really make a change,” says Nathan.
The party’s tech-savvy voting system and focus on individual power lends itself directly to young people who are unhappy with the current state of politics.
“It’s not surprising people disenfranchise and don’t want to vote, you’re actually not getting to the heart of matters to you, you’re actually choosing the lesser of two evils,” says Nathan.
Asked how those involved in traditional politics react to Flux, Nathan says, “you get mixed reactions …I’ve had people who are very closely connected to [traditional politics] say this is a breath of fresh air, this isn’t complete rubbish.”
The party has a long way to go before it lands a member in parliament and can start to enact the changes they’ve set out to make.
“When we started this party we knew that the success wouldn’t come from the majority of people saying this is the way to go, it would come from a really vocal minority who had the strength to get a candidate over the line first and then you’d start to see some support once it proved itself,” says Nathan.
The audience at their UC Q&A event, held February 22, reflected this outlook with a small but enthusiastic group in attendance.
As the party continues to build by establishing connections such as that here at UC, funding models and voluntary and staff structure are next on the list for Flux.
“At the moment, from just generous donations to a few members here and there, we’ve got some ideas about putting together fundraising campaigns. It’s a big untapped resource, there are probably hundreds of people right now that really want to get more involved and do things but we haven’t had the sort of core to facilitate it all… you actually need organisational structure to help facilitate that,” says Nathan.
Nathan reflects on their growth over the last few years and says that conversations have become easier.
“There’s actually far less opposition to it now in 2018 than there was in 2015, when we started talking to people about it. There’s lot’s of work to be done, but we’re pretty optimistic”.