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The Forum > Article Comments > The tyranny of the majority > Comments

The tyranny of the majority : Comments

By Chris Evans, published 1/12/2005

Chris Evans argues Australians will reverse the government's senate control in 2007.

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Interesting piece, although it sounds a bit like sour grapes to me!

1. Australia gave John Howard this majority. So you can't really complain if he uses it.

2. Maybe, it is a good thing that a lot of much needed reforms can now take place without endless debates and bluster from the left. Is it not a good thing that we finally have a government that can get on with job?

3. By 2007 everyone will have forgotten the IR and terrosim debates and be getting on with whatever the issues of the day are. Hopefully these will not be suicide bombings in Australia or Australia's economy falling further behind the rest of the world. If so, we would have John Howard to thank for this.
Posted by gw, Thursday, 1 December 2005 10:51:17 AM
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Well, we perhaps may not complain when they USE it, but we sure should when they ABUSE IT. And to me the days-rather-than-weeks senate enquiries we have been seeing are an abuse of power. And the insistance on everything being through before Christmas- hasn't Mr Howard checked the electoral laws? He will still be able to be around until at least 2007. There is no need to rush through major pieces of legislation, it only annoys people. The senate is meant to take its time, think about each bylaw and subsection. Rushing things will just result in badly worded laws which are to nobody's advantage.
Posted by Laurie, Thursday, 1 December 2005 11:02:02 AM
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I wonder if Senator Evans has asked himself why, at the last election, Australian voters gave the Coaltion a Senate majority. I don't think he would have, as the ALP is too self-obsessed to worry about the electorate and its beliefs.

It's just possible that more Australians are growing tired of the meddling of the Senate and balance of power being in the hands of 2% whackos like the Democrats and the Greens.

If the Senate is 'unworkable' simply because the majority of Australian voters vote the same as they do for the lower house, it might be time to think of getting rid of it and removing the overpaid snouts good only for running interferrence.
Posted by Leigh, Thursday, 1 December 2005 11:19:47 AM
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Of course you can complain if he uses it GW; we are, for the time being, free to complain about anything we like.

And the issue is not about the left and right of politics; each side when in power has to contend with blustering and debating from the other side - the so called hindering of opposition is oneof those checks and balances that has provided for relative stability over the years.

Judging from your throw away line re the left I assume you are of a conservative bent - lets assume that is the case just for the sake of argument - if the "left" had control of both houses and nationalised the medical workforce, resumed ownership of the Commonwealth Bank, telstra and the power utilities - there would be one hell of a stink from the right - are you going to sit idly by while those measures are adopted - after all they would simply be "getting on with the job".

There is enough evidence of dissent within the coalition to demonstrate that this mob are acting with undue haste and arrogance just look to the senate committe decision on Anti Terror, the number of Libs expressing concern over the refugee man made crisis,Judy Moylans dissent over the work/welfare changes - the legislation surrounding IR is not only conerning some coalition members in terms of content, it has largely been criticised as being badly drafted and technically clumsy.

There is plenty of reason to complain -
Posted by sneekeepete, Thursday, 1 December 2005 11:24:09 AM
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Why is it that Howard has forgotten his alleged love of the Australia of the fifties that he used to go on about so much, which he claimed made us such a great country, and his appreciation of history generally, before he got control of the Senate.
This attempt to destroy over a century of Australian democracy and belief in the importance of a reasonable standard of living for all Australians, not only those who have the means as individuals to beat the system must be overturned as a consequence of the 2007 election results, but preferably before.
Posted by Marsy, Thursday, 1 December 2005 11:52:35 AM
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Leigh states "Australian voters gave the Coalition a Senate majority"

Show me the evidence of a deliberate vote of All Australian voters to give the coalition a majority senate to then pass any of their laws without proper bipartisan review.

The recent senate committee (made upon on both Coalition and Labor senators, members) had their recommendations on the IR and terrorism laws ignored.

May I suggest you undertake a crash course in civics instead of listening to radio shock jocks. If that doesnít work, at least admit you donít know what you donít know
Posted by Rainier, Thursday, 1 December 2005 12:18:00 PM
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