I've written before about the Australian independent political lobby group GetUp, which, with 370,000 members, is probably the largest grassroots political action group in the country. My wife helped to run the GetUp office for a few years and so I have some grasp of the breadth of work they do and the wide variety of issues they have successfully (and unsuccessfully) campaigned on. On the whole, I think they frequently do good work trying to change the wind of social conscience and discourse as well as faciliating real steps that strengthen the political process and outcomes. A good example of the latter was the recent High Court victory that enabled 100,000 voters to register who would have otherwise been excluded by an unconstitutional change to electoral regulations introduced by the Howard Government prior to the 2007 election (see first video). Whomever these 100,000 people may vote for, having such a large body excluded from the election process unnecessarily breeds frustration, cynicism and apathy.
However, sometimes GetUp campaigns don't hit the mark. Despite being their most heavily supported campaign yet (in terms of donations to put the ad on the air), their latest effort doesn't raise the bar of political discourse, is personality-driven and is too partisan. I have written to them saying as much. Go and watch the ad and if you feel the same, then you can do likewise here.