SCAG, COAG and 40-plus other Ministerial Councils are the unconstitutional cliques that nowadays control Australia, with more practical decision-making power than parliaments: they weaken our governance by holding closed meetings with secret agendas, no media or public scrutiny and no reporting of decisions, other than in PR spin language. Meanwhile, as Perth gears up for CHOGM (the Commonwealth gabfest in October), hit lists of citizens will be drawn up, and police will get the power to strip search Australians in ‘restricted areas’ with their boundaries kept secret. Little by little, Australia’s traditional open, fair go society is being whittled away.
Communications Minister Senator Conroy says one thing, but acts in the opposite direction to censor the internet, even as other parts of the government plan to adopt cyber policies that will see Australians personal information opened up to the police forces of the world. It’s a sad time for citizens, as truculent police around the country more and more appear to think they are apart from and above society, rather than being the people’s representatives. Other topics covered in March include:
- CLA AGM goes into second phase;
- Ombudsman blasts Christmas Island centre;
- Government to sneak full-body scanners into airports;
- DNA lab processes show serious flaws, judge says;
- Copyright to be examined by ALRC;
- Vic Minister wants to give teachers power to search cars;
- Crime bodies in NSW turn on each other in bitter disputes;
- Attorney-General is miffed off over urine sample failures;
- UK shows Australia how to ‘turn the page on liberty’;
- US government looks set to acknowledge gay marriage; and
- Wrongful execution re-opens death penalty debate.
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