The security czars are playing fast and loose with the spook agencies – and, of course, the Australian people – in a power play occurring around the Parliamentary Joint Committee on Intelligence and Security. The end result could be more and deeper secrets kept, less public transparency, writes Paul Gregoire.
What was so secret about the Bernard Collaery and Witness K case? It couldn’t have been the bugging of the East Timorese Cabinet rooms, as that was well known. Perhaps it was deeper and longer-term spying on who the East Timorese leaders were planning to throw their lot in with, over suspicions of Chinese influence of concern to Australia 20 years ago, Dr Richie Gun surmises.
Paul Gregoire of Sydney Criminal Lawyers wrote about Australia leaning towards becoming a republic before the former monarch’s death, and sought comment from CLA CEO Bill Rowlings. Now updated with the change of gender accommodated, here’s a look at why Australia might change, and when.
Election in the offing: law ’n order pollies get desperate. Both major parties want new ‘frighten the citizens laws’, reducing people’s rights, increasing secret surveillance, giving police yet more powers. Pollies pretend the ill-thought-through laws will reduce crime. More likely crime will increase. Stand by for other ghastly laws from the skeleton hands of Premier Perrottet and Pals of the NSW parliamentary ghost train, where scare the punters trumps care for the citizens.
In this excellent article, social justice journalist Paul Gregoire outlines – with the help of CLA’s CEO Bill Rowlings – how bringing in a Human Rights Act to accompany a new National Integrity Commission will help complete Australia’s ethical infrastructure. Doing so would also go a long way towards fulfilling PM Albanese’s commitment on election night to ‘looking after the disadvantaged and vulnerable’ and to ‘shard values of fairness’.
What should the incoming Australian government set as priorities for the 2022-2025 parliamentary term? You can read about what CLA believes priorities should be in the CLArion MAY 2022 (see below), or here –in response to those priorities – is what noted museum and education expert Dr Des Griffin AM proposes as early-term ‘must-dos’ for whomever forms government.
Australia’s positioning over Ukraine needs to take many things into consideration, not least of which is the impact (deaths, injuries, lives ruined) on hundreds of thousands of people in the region. While commercial opportunities may emerge from the conflict, globally a change in the balance of power may cost Australia dearly, observes Dr Kay Danes.