Australian government papers reveal race law’s slippery slope

Former Attorney General Michael Duffy, who drafted Australia's race law

Former Attorney General Michael Duffy, who drafted Australia’s race law

Government documents released yesterday by the National Archives of Australia reveal that the notorious Australian race law – section 18C of the Racial Discrimination Act – was the subject of intense discussion among ministers before it was introduced, and as originally drafted would have been far less restrictive.

However as many countries have found, once setting off down the path of restricting free speech in the interests of racial harmony, there is an inevitable slippery slope towards politically correct tyranny.

The original submission to Paul Keating’s cabinet in July 1992, drafted by then Attorney General Michael Duffy and only made public yesterday, stressed that “for an act to amount to racial vilification it must be an act or conduct that is likely to lead to incitement to hatred, contempt or ridicule and should not be relatively minor or be of the nature of a lighthearted racist joke.”

During their discussions of the draft, ministers went on to emphasise that prosecution should “require a series of precise conditions to be met”, including “actual offensive intent”.  UK readers will note that this would have made the measure more similar to the Race Relations Act 1965, the first UK law specifically to outlaw “incitement to racial hatred”.


Cartoon called an "attack" on Indigenous Australians

However as with the several later extensions of that landmark legislation, Australia’s Section 18C developed into a grotesque tyranny, restricting legitimate political debate and in extreme cases even being used against comedians and cartoonists.

Last year the well-known cartoonist Bill Leak was the target of a complaint under Section 18C over the cartoon (above) depicting an Aborigine, or what is now called an “indigenous Australian”.  The complaint was later dropped after a public outcry over abuse of the law.  The university student who made the complaint has since sought to present herself as the victim, whining that she had only intended a “conciliation process”!

What was originally portrayed as a law targeting serious incitements of “racist” violence is now employed to intimidate anyone dissenting from multiracial political orthodoxy.  If Bill Leak had not been backed by The Australian, one of the country’s most powerful media outlets, he would have been crushed under the liberal juggernaut’s wheels.

Bill Leak cartoon showing himself being handed by a black police officer to a Twitter lynching.

Pauline Hanson’s One Nation wins four Australian Senate seats

The One Nation party – headed by Australia’s best known anti-immigration activist Pauline Hanson – won four Senate seats at the Australian federal elections on July 2nd.  Full results have only recently been published – a month after polling day – due to Australia’s complicated voting system. One Nation polled 4.3% nationwide, and 9.2% in Queensland where they are the third largest party.

In addition to Mrs Hanson herself, One Nation’s new senators are her fellow Queenslander Malcolm Roberts (best known for his climate change scepticism); former lecturer and architectural design consultant Brian Burston, elected in New South Wales with 4.1%; and ex-farmer Rod Culleton in Western Australia, where One Nation polled 4.0%.

Mrs Hanson first achieved political prominence in 1996 when she was elected to a House seat, despite having been ‘disendorsed’ by the Liberal Party before the election, following controversial comments about the level of state assistance for Aborigines.  She lost her House seat in 1998 and her One Nation party collapsed in acrimonious personal/factional divisions during the early 2000s. Predictably new disputes over party finances have erupted even before the new senators have taken their seats.

In recent years Australian voters have become increasingly concerned about immigration and related issues: in the absence of a credible alternative (and helped by recent changes in electoral law) Mrs Hanson has been able to stage a comeback, despite her limitations. The most credible anti-immigration Australian politician was Graeme Campbell, a House member from 1980 to 1998 who was expelled from the Labor Party for his stance on racial matters, but Campbell is now aged 77 and semi-retired.

Alongside One Nation, a new party called Australian Liberty Alliance fought this year’s elections.  The ALA is almost exclusively focused on opposition to Islam, and had the Dutch Freedom Party leader Geert Wilders addressing its inaugural rally last October.  However its results were insignificant compared to One Nation, with 1.1% in its best state – Western Australia – and tiny fractions of 1% elsewhere, including 0.6% in New South Wales, despite having a celebrity candidate, veteran rock singer Angry Anderson.

Similarly celebrity status did not help Queensland independent candidate Kim Vuga, who polled less than 0.1% for the Senate after her anti-immigration campaign was overshadowed by Pauline Hanson’s One Nation.

The launch of Australian Liberty Alliance in October 2015, with Dutch Freedom Party leader Geert Wilders (second left)

The launch of Australian Liberty Alliance in October 2015, with Dutch Freedom Party leader Geert Wilders (second left)

Jim Saleam, leader of the Australia First Party, polled 1.2% in Lindsay, a House seat in the outer Sydney suburbs.  This was up 0.5% on the last election, but below the 2.4% polled by the new ALA.  In another Sydney suburban seat, McMahon, the AFP’s Victor Waterson polled 2.0%.

Preferences cast by One Nation voters generally helped Labor candidates against Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull’s ruling coalition, a phenomenon analysed in a post-election article in The Australian.

Turnbull’s government seems likely to survive with a wafer-thin majority, but his authority has been severely weakened: a development which many Australian patriots will welcome!  Sadly the patriotic cause in Australia remains weakened by poor leadership, with the only substantial alternatives being the shallow and opportunistic Hanson, the anti-British (though in other respects ideologically stronger) Saleam, and the Islam-obsessed ALA.

Meanwhile the Australian version of the EDL – Reclaim Australia – has been targeted by anti-terrorist police, who arrested several leading activists in the Melbourne area.

 

Australia goes to the polls

Pauline Hanson - leader of One Nation - is attempting an electoral comeback to the Australian Senate

Pauline Hanson – leader of One Nation – is attempting an electoral comeback to the Australian Senate

Voters across Australia head to the polls on Saturday (July 2nd) after a bitter and close fought federal election campaign.  For the first time since 1987, both the House of Representatives (elected in constituencies on a British style first past the post system) and the Senate (elected proportionally via statewide party lists) are being contested.

There are three rival parties in Australia which could be described as ‘nationalist’ in the sense that H&D readers would use the word: i.e. they are similar to either the NF, BNP, EDL or the right-wing of UKIP.

By far the most closely linked to our movement is the Australia First Party led by Dr Jim Saleam, a traditional racial nationalist whose policies include rebuilding Australia’s manufacturing industry, abolishing multiculturalism, and controlling foreign ownership of Australian financial and economic assets.

The AFP has a slate of Senate candidates in Western Australia, and candidates for two House seats in New South Wales (including Dr Saleam himself in a western suburb of Sydney), one in a Victoria constituency (a Melbourne suburb), and one in the constituency covering an area centred on Darwin in the Northern Territory.

Dr Jim Saleam, leader of the Australia First Party

Dr Jim Saleam, leader of the Australia First Party

Australia First’s traditional rival is the One Nation party headed by controversial former senator Pauline Hanson.  One Nation is anti-immigration and pro-White, but its policies are far more vague than Australia First.  Pauline Hanson’s earlier political career ended in disappointment and recrimination, but she is now attempting a comeback and has a reasonable chance of winning one of the Queensland seats.  One Nation also has slates of Senate candidates in Western Australia, Victoria, Tasmania, South Australia and New South Wales.

The newest semi-nationalist party (in some ways similar to One Nation) is the Australian Liberty Alliance (ALA) which has a mainly anti-Islam focus and has hosted Dutch Freedom Party leader Geert Wilders as a guest speaker at the party’s official launch in October 2015.  The ALA has grabbed some headlines by recruiting veteran rock singer Angry Anderson as one of its Senate candidates in New South Wales.  Some have suggested that the ALA and One Nation have agreed electoral pacts in most Australian constituencies: there is just one House seat where the two parties are standing against each other.  However there is bitter opposition between ALA and One Nation on the one hand, and the more hardline traditional nationalist AFP on the other.

An ALA candidate is standing against Jim Saleam in Sydney, one of four ALA House candidates in New South Wales.  There are also ALA Senate slates in most states, a House candidate in Western Australia, and five in Queensland.

In Queensland the AFP has endorsed Kim Vuga, a well known independent Senate candidate whose anti-Muslim, anti-immigration views have received wide media exposure.

The AFP has endorsed Kim Vuga, an independent, anti-immigration rival to Pauline  Hanson in Queensland.

The AFP has endorsed Kim Vuga, an independent, anti-immigration rival to Pauline Hanson in Queensland.

Most analysts assume that the only one of the above candidates with a strong chance of winning is Pauline Hanson, who is in a close fight for one of the Senate seats in Queensland.

Myriad small Christian and populist parties are standing in various parts of Australia on platforms including opposition to abortion and gay marriage.  The latter issue is likely to be put to a referendum, whoever wins the federal election.  Present Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull, who heads the supposedly conservative Liberal-National coalition, is a notorious supporter of both gay marriage and the anti-monarchy, anti-British movement for an Australian republic.  Since the republican cause was defeated in a referendum in 1999, it might be considered to early to push for a second poll on the issue, but we can assume that Turnbull and his devious allies such as newspaper tycoon Rupert Murdoch will have a strategy to resume their campaign as soon as practicable.

Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull, a conservative who campaigns for gay marriage and against the monarchy

Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull, a conservative who campaigns for gay marriage and against the monarchy

Strange though it might seem, the best of the realistic results for Australian nationalists might be to see Turnbull defeated by Labour, in the hope that Australian conservatism might then acquire more decent leadership.

Australia’s first Jewish Prime Minister

Malcolm Turnbull (right) is the new Prime Minister of Australia.

Malcolm Turnbull (right) is the new Prime Minister of Australia.

This morning lawyer and tycoon Malcolm Turnbull became Prime Minister of Australia after a successful internal party coup against incumbent PM Tony Abbott.

Turnbull is a well known republican and supporter of gay rights, so the two most obvious policy changes are likely to include moves towards Australia ditching the monarchy and embracing gay marriage.

Less well known is the new Prime Minister’s Jewish heritage, as reported two years ago by the Australian Jewish News.

In this connection it is interesting that Turnbull first hit the headlines as lawyer for expatriate MI5 officer Peter Wright, who in the 1980s published his autobiography Spycatcher from his new home in Australia, defying the efforts of Margaret Thatcher’s government to maintain MI5’s traditional secrecy.

The original reason for Wright’s book (which began as a cooperation with recently deceased journalist Chapman Pincher) stemmed from his former MI5 colleague Lord Rothschild, who encouraged Wright’s allegations against ex-MI5 boss Sir Roger Hollis, so as to deflect earlier charges that Rothschild himself had been a traitor.

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