January 24

Get ready for the usual stunts

Stand by for the usual republican whinges and stunts for Australia Day.


As Bob Murray predicts in The Australian (22/1)

“…there will be all the usual complaints about the day, the flag, the national anthem, the Constitution, the head of state and the federal system.

“A celebrity or two will probably come forward to call for change to one or more of these, as will editorial page letter writers and a columnist or three.

…republicans need to do more….

But, he says,”…out on the beaches, in the flood-damaged districts and in barbecue land these issues will largely be ignored.”

As for a politicians’ republic, he says the republicans:

“… certainly need to do more work. We have heard little since the 1999 referendum about practical proposals for overcoming the great legal obstacles to a republic, such as further defining the head-of-state powers and the clash over direct and indirect election of a president.”

Don't hold your breath. They've had eleven years, and produced nothing.


…Head of State… 

He suggests legislation to declare the Governor-General Head of State, which she is anyway.

When Tony Abbott called for this, The Sydney Morning Herald didn’t just report it.

They cynically used it on the news pages to campaign for a Yes case. The story was presented under a headline: “Monarchists Dump Queen.”  This was a futile attempt to sow dissension and weaken morale in monarchist ranks and thus destroy the No case. It didn’t work.

…flag changing republicans…

[Continued below] Mr. Murray argues the republican flag changers should do something they haven’t done with republicanism- produce something.

He doesn’t like the curious idea that you can somehow modernise the wording of the constitution. Perhaps they should consult those experts who have modernised and the liturgy and scripture more relevant, and emptied the churches.    

Nor does he think we would ever agree to abolish the states.


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