It’s that time again. For some years now, on the Queens Birthday and on Australia Day, the republican movement tries desperately to make the news with a stunt. This is invariably designed to draw attention to their plans to persuade the politicians to waste millions more on their increasingly confusing and extremely devious proposals to change our constitution, and of course the flag.
Remember the time when they demanded the Queen give back the magnificent Tom Roberts painting of the opening of our first parliament? They might as well have asked that Her Majesty give back all Crown Land! The Tom Roberts painting hangs on permanent loan in the Parliament in Canberra. Its owner? The Australian Crown. As is all Crown Land, which is owned by the Crown in the right of the relevant state. (In NSW the politicians have found the time to change the name of this to State Land!)
In the unlikely event of Australia agreeing with the republican movement, and throwing out its oldest institution, that one which is above politics and replacing it with yet another (groan) politician, the successor institution to the Crown would own the painting. Perhaps this would be that additional politician, the president.
The practice of republican politicians in New South Wales, which Imre Salusinszky, writing in The Australian on 4 June 2005, labelled "the most incompetent government in Australia", seems to be to remove all paintings featuring The Queen or her predecessors from public viewing. As the central figure in the Tom Roberts painting is the future King, it is possible that a future president could follow this infantile practice.
No wonder some of the republicans want to keep the name Governor-General, hoping people will think the politician who is the president, is not in fact a politician. Fortunately the Australian voter is too wise to fall for that.
An example of the way the NSW republican politicians operate was exposed in a letter to The Daily Telegraph on 4 June 2005 from J.A. Fitzpatrick:
The 21 gun salute to mark the Queen’s Birthday used to be held outside Government House.
It is now to be fired at North Head where no one can hear it.
"Security – loud noises might frighten people" is the weak excuse for more of Cars republicanism by stealth. The fireworks, let off frequently at Darling Harbour, are frightening too; but is anyone thinking of moving them?
You can see the priorities and the tactics of our republican politicians, for which they have no mandate whatsoever. The republican movement has already unveiled a plan to requisition the Commonwealth Games for their political agenda. Politicising the Games will not go down well with the Australian people.
In the meantime, stand by for the usual stunt next Monday.
Until next time,