Flat White

Our failing political class

21 March 2017

4:55 PM

21 March 2017

4:55 PM

Too many problems in modern Australia country have been either created by our ruling political class or made significantly worse by them.

In the meantime, there is much excitement in government circles this week over the release of the latest Newspoll. The two-party preferred vote has risen from the previous poll finding of 45:55, in favour of Labor, to 48:52, still in favour of Labor.

Another regular poll, the Essential Report, has just found  the 2PP to be 45:55, down from 47:53 in its latest effort.  It should be recalled that the 2PP in the 2016 election when the Turnbull government lost most of the gains Tony Abbott had accrued over two elections and barely scraped in was 50.4:49.6.

Although Tony Abbott’s Newspoll record was one of the two grounds Malcolm Turnbull solemnly cited to the nation as his justification for backstabbing his Prime Minister, he has since declared that polls are not a reliable indicator of government performance.

So opinion polls are not a reliable indicator of the Turnbull government’s performance but were always a reliable indicator of Abbott government’s performance.

In any event, our ruling parties no longer operate on the principles on which their parties were founded, including crucially in the case of the Liberal Party, freedom of speech limited government and self-reliance.

Worse, government policy today is too often not evidence-based. Rather it is directed by some or other secular dogma, as is so much of modern society.  Failure to observe any of those secular dogmas results in findings of heresy similar to those which came out at the time of the Inquisition. Today, such findings can be followed by harassment, intimidation, threats and even violence if not legal action, for example through and even invited by the Human Rights Commission.

One of the most serious problems today flowing from a secular dogma is the skyrocketing price of and the underlying reliability of energy, especially electricity and gas. Not only is this making life difficult for rank-and -file Australians, it is leading to the deindustrialisation of Australia and damaging agriculture. The basis of this is the secular dogma that the theory of anthropogenic global warming, as enunciated by the United Nations, must be accepted as infallible on the basis that ”the science is settled”. The corollary is that governments can and will act to reduce global warming.

The resulting policy of the Turnbull government, their Renewable Energy Target of 23 per cent, is the principal cause of the closing and destruction of coal-fired stations, the skyrocketing cost of electricity and the likely collapse of the market. His latest $2 billion silver bullet, pumping Snowy River water uphill to produce electricity when it comes downhill, will apparently use more electricity that it will produce.

Fortunately for the Turnbull government, Labor’s policy nationally, in South Australia, Victoria and Queensland is significantly worse, if that is possible. But to demonstrate that Labor politicians are at least cunning, the West Australian Labor Party dropped a similar policy no doubt to assure its victory in the recent State election.

It is doubtful that the political class actually believe in their anthropogenic global warming dogma. If they did, their behaviour is extremely hypocritical. As they believe CO2 emissions are lethal to civilisation, it is surely incumbent on them to have the smallest CO2 footprints in the nation. In fact, they probably have footprints many times that of the rank-and-file. They make no attempt whatsoever to avoid CO2 emissions through for example avoiding travel, air-conditioning and so forth. Most travel by politicians, especially international travel, is usually unnecessary. The decisions for international conferences and the like are usually decided in advance, the actual meeting being merely a photo opportunity for personal prestige and political advantage.

As to the various governments’ gas policies, these have veered between a total and unnecessary ban to forcing mining involving fracking on farmers on prime agricultural land who fear for the aquifers. Except in Western Australia, none has adopted anything like a policy reserving gas for the domestic market.

If we look at other areas of government policy, education, law and order and immigration, there has been a distinct failure in maintaining the standards of the past while at the same time significantly increasing government expenditure. All are dominated by secular dogmas which must be believed.

Secular dogma even extends to the welfare of the indigenous people. Notwithstanding the very substantial actions by the Federal government in this area, including enormous budgetary provisions, we are required to believe that after previous silver bullets which were to solve the problem – granting legislative power in Aboriginal affairs to the Commonwealth Parliament, the Mabo decision − the latest dogma which must be received as being the solution to the problem is the recognition of the indigenous people in the constitution and/or the entry into treaties with the indigenous people. In relation to constitutional recognition, although a significant group of non-voting corporations have indicated their strong support, it is unknown precisely what the proposed change to the constitution will be.

Even in one fundamental area, that in relation to our basic freedoms and especially to freedom of speech, all principal parties have failed miserably.  Speech is clearly less free in Australia than it was in the past – we need only consider the cases against Andrew Bolt, the late and great Bill Leak and the group of completely and totally innocent Queensland University of Technology students. It is not that long ago that the Gillard government attempted to institute a rigorous control of the press in Australia. The government is scarcely presenting a united front with its proposals to change the Racial Discrimination Act. State Liberal leaders have previously declared their ranks opposed without even putting the matter to their party rooms.

The political class is even intent on changing such a basic institution as the family, without the approval of the people. This has now also become a secular dogma notwithstanding the fact that the clear extent of the marriage power in the constitution is to allow the parliament to legislate with respect to traditional marriage. In other words, if the constitution is to mean what it meant when the people adopted it or amended it, the parliament acting can only effect any change with the people.

When a gentle debate on this between two members of parliament took place recently in association with a brewery, the brewery was threatened with its business is being seriously damaged just as was Sydney’s Mercure hotel for daring to rent rooms for a meeting of Christians supporting traditional marriage and just as Cory Bernardi’s office was ransacked. All of these actions, unacceptable in a civilised democratic society, have been allowed to proceed with impunity.

Those who dared to hold a view different from the decreed secular dogma are treated as heretics who should be at least isolated and if possible punished.

Our political class is failing the country.

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