You are here

civil rights

A proposal for a sensible population policy

In the article the writer questions the whole idea of governments making top-down decisions about the size of a country's population.

A question that often comes up when discussion population related matter is, "What should the population be?" or "What level of immigration/growth do you think is suitable?". I don't have an answer to that question, and I don't intend to provide one.

Torture report shows need for checks and balances in government

A Patriot's Act is a legal novel by lawyer Kenneth Eades, exploring the impact of Bush's terror laws, based on case histories. In a legal investigation and then a trial, we see how US administrations redefined torture in the light of 'terrorism' and we learn what that could mean to an individual. This clear but sophisticated story dramatises what has been sacrificed for 'safety' and how much less safe it really makes us. This article by the author of the book, gives a history of how we got from there to here. Although the author writes about the United States, Australia has aped that country with its own terror laws.

Australia March 4: National Protest in all states civil & industrial rights - "The Fight of our lives" (CFMEU)

Australia is in a bad place. Our unemployment rate and our cost of living are rising. Youth unemployment is over 20%, the highest since we began recording such statistics. Candobetter.net Editor: Australian law makes general strikes impossible. This is probably the next best thing. (CFMEU) Take a sign about what bugs you.

Video: Melissa Parke MP - speech on how restricting our freedom and privacy won't protect us from terrorism

Melissa Parke, ALP Member for Fremantle, West Australia, was the only MP to dissent against the passing of the new so-called anti-terrorism laws in Australia, which make huge changes to our privacy and civil rights.

Ms Parke (10:45am) — I wish to start my comments on this Bill by making reference to a case that came before the House of Lords in relation to the detention of foreign terrorist suspects indefinitely without trial under the UK's Anti-Terrorism, Crime and Security Act, where Lord Hoffman, in a dissenting judgement, said:

There Is No "Green" Energy

The plain truth:

- 10,000 years ago humans and our livestock occupied just 0.01% of all the land-air vertebrate biomass on earth.
- Now humans and our livestock occupy 97% of all land-air vertebrate biomass.
- Humans and our livestock now consume over 40% of earth’s annual green land biomass production.
- 1 million people born every 4½ days. People live longer.

A National emergency - Australian children are not well (Article by Sally Pepper)

I don’t have kids but I am disturbed about the Heart Foundation’s Active Healthy Kids very poor report card for Australian children last week. It said that Australian children are largely unfit because of a lack of exercise and that this deterioration has happened in the last couple of decades. Natasha Schranz author of the Foundation's inaugural report has graded Australian children at a disgraceful D minus. Contributing to this terrble score was a D for "active transport", meaning not nearly enough walking or bicycle riding to and from school.

"Rights" in the Victorian Human Rights Act 2006 (Extract)

We have published Part 2 of the Victorian Charter of Human Rights and Responsibilities Act 2006 here to give some convenient access to the rights accorded there. Obviously people need to read the whole act to see how these rights are defined and how and if they may be enforced. All acts passed by the Victorian Parliament are supposed to be compatible with these rights.

What population policy means to a people


Talk of 'population policy', of meeting population targets, or using immigration to achieve particular growth goals conceals a much larger problem and moral issue. Furthermore, it allows people who promote such policies, or who accept them for personal benefit, to wash their hands of the moral implications that such policy has. Generally, these questions of population are seen as simply matters of numbers and resources, and it is definitely true that there are issues of numbers, space and resource management behind these. But behind all this is a larger issue, one obvious when seen, but rarely pointed out. The very acceptance of the idea that a 'population policy', or any policy or idea to that effect being implemented for economic or growth purposes creates a moral dilemma. To accept this as valid governance is to reject another idea, that of a people having the right to self determination and self preservation. That growth, or lack thereof of a nation is determined by peoples individual reproductive choices.

States fight back against NSA: Can US states rein in an out-of-control Federal spy agency?

The American people aren’t falling for NSA's propaganda. They want the rogue agency reined in.
But Obama refuses to rein in the NSA, Dianne Feinstein says that Congress "doesn't have the votes" to do anything about mass surveillance, and at least some judges are supporting the NSA's spying (and it's not clear what the Supreme Court will do).

Ronald Coase and economic bullying today

All over the world right wing 'think tanks' will be commemorating the work of economist Ronald Coase, who died on the second of September this year (2013) at the age of 102. Unfortunately his work has been used as an excuse to marginalise civil and human rights by making it legally acceptable for the interests of big business and the wealthy to over-rule everyone else’s financial, social and environmental interests. Coase's work is largely responsible for many of the problems of democracy, overpopulation and overdevelopment that are ruining more and more peoples' lives and freedom today. Many of its lesser supporters are naive followers of fashion and don't really understand what they are losing through their innocent embrace of 'efficiency' any more, perhaps, than did the followers of Chairman Mao's 'Great Leap Forward'. (This article is based on an extract from Sheila Newman's forthcoming book, Demography, Territory, Law 2: Land-tenure and the Origins of Capitalism in Britain, Countershock Press, probably early 2014.)

The ‘rule of law’ and reform of the Australian federal system

The author of the article suggests that the rule of law and federalism are no longer operating in Australia. As a result of three decades of Australian governments enthusiastically embracing neo-liberal capitalist policies, power is now concentrated at the central level. Government captured by the few: the two major parties in collusion with big business nationally and internationally. With no indication from the Australian people that they seek the radical systemic reforms required to reinstate federalism and reclaim a fairer and more just society, only small steps towards reform appear realistic. The revision of the Preamble to the Constitution as a precursor to further constitutional change and the reassertion of state powers supporting of local power are suggested as first steps.

All Australians to be treated as terrorist suspects?

This article contains James Sinnamon's submission to the Parliamentary Joint Committee on Intelligence and Security (PJCIS) which wants to pass new laws to make all your emails and other internet transactions up to two years back accessible to the Australian Government. "If Australian governments were serious about protecting Australians from terrorism, they would not have given transnational corporations with interests in every kind of industry including military total access to information about resources and infrastructure relating to location and operation of power, water supply and telecommunications, land-use planning, national statistics, scientific research institutions and banks. What is left, I ask, for terrorists?" (James Sinnamon)

Also published on Global Research.

Political, democratic problems with multiculturalism - response to John Marlowe

Australians have found it very hard to protest against high immigration because of constant subtle messages from government and media implying that they had no right to object. They have been given the idea that there was nothing special about them that gave them the right to object. They only lived here. Although only Australians might vote in governments, the importance of this was subsumed to a cult of plutocracy, where governments prioritised commercial and corporate demands over the wishes of the actual electorate. The mainstream press (the ABC, the Murdoch Press, the Fairfax Press) promoted a cult of elite authoritarianism and the official alternative press never really encouraged questioning of this process on issues of real dissent. And the elite authorities all endorsed 'multiculturalism'.

Greens' dilution of their conservation effort

If one checks the policies of the Australian Greens Party ('The Greens') on its website - of their 44 policies, some 28 are NOT directly related to environmental conservation, but instead 'social justice'. So where is the so-called 'Greens' Party headed and if most of their policies are NOT concentrated on core green conservation - does this political party deserve to retain its morally mandate for driving the 'green agenda' and should it morally brand itself big G 'Green'?

Subscribe to RSS - civil rights