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The Forum > Article Comments > Mind what you say, or you'll lose your funding > Comments

Mind what you say, or you'll lose your funding : Comments

By Tanya Plibersek, published 17/7/2006

Governments should do all they can to make it easier, not harder, to participate in democracy.

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Tanya,
I agree wholeheartedly, intimidation is the hallmark of the Howard government. The problem is not only with the Liberal side of politics though. The Labor party has drifted so far to the right, they now seem to occupy the ground that the Liberals once stood on.

Until federal Labor returns to represent its former constituency, i.e. the "centre" of politics, the federal Labor party will remain as Australia's largest pressure group. Rid yourselves of "the invisible man" Beazley, and install someone with a bit of passion to oppose Julia Gillard for example. While the federal and Queensland parties are run by silly old Bill Ludwig and his Australia's Weakest Union cronies, what genuine worker would/could vote Labor.
Posted by SHONGA, Monday, 17 July 2006 11:19:46 AM
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Democracy is neither free, fair nor equal.
Posted by mally, Monday, 17 July 2006 11:51:40 AM
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Of course this is insidious and an attack on democracy and free speech. The ABC's Background Briefing program has featured this. One of the ironies is that former ALP parliamentarian Gary Johns has been in charge of the program for the IPA. Some Nature Conservation Councils have also lost funds which were redirected to individual conservation bodies. The Minister for the Environment, the Hon Ian Campbell, responded in August 2005 to a letter about this, saying that the guidelines he had established "do not prevent any group from lobbying or making public statements on any matter". He did say that the grants were explicitly for "on-the-ground work to protect .. environment and heritage assets." This government is following the same path as the Bush administration and Republican Party.
Posted by Des Griffin, Monday, 17 July 2006 11:52:12 AM
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What a load of political crock, Tanya. Governments should not be funding people or groups to make political statements, regardless of whether those statements are for or against any political party. Similarly, governments should remove public funding when it is being used for partisan political purposes. When the ALP was in office federally from 1983 to 1996, it behaved no differently than how the Howard government has operated for the last 10 years.

The bottom line is that, if someone has a political statement to make on any issue, funding should not come from the public purse. It's that simple.
Posted by Bernie Masters, Monday, 17 July 2006 12:06:24 PM
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Bernie.

What A lot Of Hog Wash. Have you forgotton where! the funding comes from?
The people Burnie. i suppose you agree with the move to hush the RSPCA from running their Ban live Export and intensive farming movement as well
Thing Thing IS Bernie that 99 percent of Australia WANT the RSPCA do do their job.
Thats is just one eg of the bullying that goes on.

Its such a pity that the Government oppose! any proper codes of practise towards animal welfare isnt it.
Perhaps that to al,llow people like Amada Vanestone tocontiue her cruel practses and half the ministers to carry on with their personal interests of live exports.
God Forbid that the people should want to say something about Cruelty with their OWN money.
Its the Peoples money NOT the governments. They are gagging free speach and choice.


course that is just one example there are many other
Posted by Wendy Lewthwaite, Monday, 17 July 2006 1:20:37 PM
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Excellent Tanya. I fully agree.

But the big question is: what will Labor do to reverse this momentum and improve participatory democracy?

I find it very strange that you have made no mention at all about Laborís policies on any of this. This suggests very strongly that if Labor won power, little would change.

You failed to mention one of the really disgusting aspects of antidemocracy Ė compulsory preferential voting. This voting system means that your vote can and often does count where you have no intention of it counting, which of course is fundamentally antidemocratic. And yet, Labor fully supports it at the Federal level, donít they.
Posted by Ludwig, Monday, 17 July 2006 1:45:38 PM
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