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John Stone is a former Secretary of Treasury and Queensland senator and is well versed in the Rubik’s Cube type mental dexterity and dark arts of political preferencing.

Many people don’t understand that although you can have a brilliant campaign and strategy the entire thing can falter because of preference arrangements.
A great deal of it seems somewhat counterintuitive and you end up achieving the very thing you were trying to avoid.

You must preference the Liberals last is John Stone’s message.

For example if you want to send the Liberals a message, you don’t preference them second or even third because they would still win as the top two exhaust and those preferences tumble into the Liberal column.
No message sent. No message received. A futile and pointless exercise in even bothering to vote. The second last paragraph in Stone’s Rules of Engagement highlights this for voters in Mackellar.

“..Each case will be different. In my own electorate (North Sydney), where Trent Zimmerman was elected last December to replace Joe Hockey (on which, see my article in Quadrant’s May issue), his big margin means that my putting him last will have little effect, other than to deprive the party of public funding ($2.60) it would otherwise receive.

In Mackellar, however, where a strongly conservative Independent (Jim Ball) will be running, your vote for him while putting Jason Falinski last could help Falinski lose that seat despite Bishop’s previous huge margin…”