||Issue No. 326||29 September 2006|
Interview: Australia’s Most Wanted
Industrial: The Fox and the Contractor
Unions: Industrial Wasteland
International: Two Bob's Worth
Economics: National Interest
Environment: The Real Dinosaur
History: Only In Spain?
Review: Clerk Off
Letters to the Editor
There is a new political correctness, in Australia. People are afraid to speak out publicly about the gradual dismemberment of freedoms.
A dismemberment that means terrorism works against any democracy that fails to hold fast to its intrinsic values.
George Orwell's 1984, spoke of the general hardening of outlook that set in, practices which had been long abandoned, like, imprisonment without trial, torture to extract confessions all were tolerated and even defended by people who considered themselves enlightened and progressive.
Would I be liable, under our recent legislation, to being charged with sedition were I say for example that this Government has given itself powers, whose breadth and arbitrary nature, with lack of judicial oversight, should not exist in any democratic country?
If I remain silent would I be abrogating my duties as a citizen?
John Howard's apologists will accuse me of Howard hating. I don't hate him; I fear him and what he is doing to my country.
We can often be an apathetic, indifferent bunch, too easily intimidated into looking away from bullying.
It is way past time to stand up to speak out.
John Ward, Tasmania
I just read your piece 'A Values Call' and I just wanted to applaud you on the tone and content of your article.
I currently live in California and I cannot tell you how many emails I get from what can loosely be called mid-America with alleged statements from that "great man Australian PM" honest John Howard with regards to the Islamic community and how the USA needs to adopt a similar tone.
It is very disturbing on a number of levels, not least because America has such a negligible Islamic population that is so well integrated to make the point moot.
However it is worrying more so because it paints the picture of Australia as this red neck, racist, intolerant nation. Then celebrates that. It reminds me of the Pauline Hansen period (I hope Honest and Bomber are not a common theme?) when I was living in the UK and trying in vain to convince English folk that "no Australia is a tolerant, liberal society".
Good luck in challenging the false logic of terrorism and US corporate capitalism as some kind of unquestionable inevitability.
Yours in solidarity,
Jonnie Cocks, NSW
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