Anti-terrorism legislation

We wandered into a police state the other day
content as a cloud

Read the rest of David Dunstan’s poem ‘When the nation stopped for a horse race’ on the forum.

Read more comments   on the anti-terrorism legislation:

I have little respect for a government that seeks in a panic to fundamentally erode the basic freedoms of the people who elected it, but I have no respect for a government that tries to do so without allowing those people the basic courtesy of getting to publicly debate it first. (Jeff)

The legislation has ample protection from the courts so I can’t see what all the paranoia is about. (Timbo)

This sort of legislation is catch all and would be dangerous in many people’s hands. I am not paranoid, just alert and aware and slightly less comfortable. (GraemeF)

Human Rights Act

Courts and parliament question on the forum:

I want to know, if the courts are to decide whether legislation conforms or conflicts with the HRA and if the government is to determine what to do if there is conflict, what safeguards will there be to prevent the government of the day from changing the HRA so that it conforms with obnoxious legislation? (tknight)

The safeguard will be elections. By all accounts, the Blair government would like to repeal its human rights act. But to do so would be seen as a very cynical move. What is more likely is that the government would try to argue that the obnoxious legislation is justified. If they cannot do so, then they run the risk of falling foul of the electorate. (bilbo)


Last week, Jane Caro’s piece: RIGHT, LEFT, RIGHT…, attracted many comments:

I  always look at who is calling who Mr Left or Mr Right, & feel that it is a convenient way not to address the "meat" of a specific issue. (rfink)

In essence, don’t we use these labels because we’re a tad too complacent to think things through to the end, instead finding it easier to resort to clichés which provide a convenient context or background to assist us in categorizing a particular person or a specific political viewpoint? (rustysalt)

Don’t reject the idea of ‘left-right’ tension as irrelevant because it is ‘simple’. Human beings are drawn to find ‘simple’ explanations of things. That is the nature of all theory – to be as parsimonious as possible. (walznhabibi)

An Open Call to Sedition by Chas Savage has shown that he’s not alone:

Dazzling, compelling, timely and right. Congratulations. When they knock on your door I, and many others, will support you. (Julian)

Down with John Howard. Get the Maddies out of Government. This is an invitation to a Revolution (astrickland)

As we all know, it is true that evil need not be done by evil people, all that is required is for good people to turn away and I’d rather go to jail than do that. Enough is enough…this government has already gotten away with too much. (lulufredsi)

Launched in 2004, New Matilda is one of Australia's oldest online independent publications. It's focus is on investigative journalism and analysis, with occasional smart arsery thrown in for reasons of sanity. New Matilda is owned and edited by Walkley Award and Human Rights Award winning journalist Chris Graham.