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Day to Day Politics: Constitutional ineptness and political lying.

Thursday 27 July 2017

1 Either circumstantially or by poor judgment Coalition members continue to dip their collective toes into the political tub of boiling water.

A few days ago I wrote that the Constitution was an archaic document. That if we had a standing ”Committee on constitutional Reform” then suggestions from it would see a lot of matters. such as dual citizenship, attended to.

Recommendations from it could be presented as referenda at each election. It is so outmoded and archaic that you could drive a truck through it.

As Anthony Green points out:

”Senator Canavan’s mother applied for Italian citizenship in 2006, and at the same time applied for her children, including Senator Canavan, who was 25 at the time.

Senator Canavan states he did not know of this application, has confirmed with the Italian authorities that he did not make the application, but has been informed that by that application he is a foreign resident Italian citizen.”

But the matter of Matt Canavan – although different from that of Waters and Ludlam – has an odor of suspicion about it. At first his defense was that he knew nothing about it. That his mother never told him.

When I first heard that my reaction was one of incredulity. Your mother makes you a citizen of another country and doesn’t tell you. Really? I wondered why this flimsy excuse wasn’t picked up be the media in general.

However, it all became clear the next day when it was disclosed that the possibility of doing so was raised at a family meeting a year before.

It was at a time when his father was fighting fraud charges and was later convicted. The matter of citizenship may or may not have anything to do with it but time will determine if there was.

It seems to me that Senator Canavan’s defense seems to rest on the fact that he never knew. His mother never told him. Is that really true?

Ignorance has, in law, never been an excuse.

I believe Canavan will almost certainly be found to be a dual citizen. It does not matter how he became a citizen. Only matters that he is one – as he admitted himself.

Ask yourself: ”Do you think if your mother made you a citizen of another country that she would not have told you?”

In the midst of all this constitutional hogwash I wondered if perhaps the Governor General shouldn’t hand over governance of the country to the Public Service while parliamentarians citizenship eligibility is sorted out. Joking, of course.

Will Malcolm Roberts be the next?

An observation

”Honesty isn’t popular anymore. It doesn’t carry the weight of society’s approval it once did.”

2 Watching the Deputy Prime Minister do a press conference is always an excruciating experience for me. So on Wednesday morning I felt the usual throbbing, or perhaps embarrassment is a better word, that this man is actually our Deputy Prime Minister. What connects me though is the possibility that he might put his foot in it.

His defense of Senator Canavan was obviously sincere but his preparedness to be examined by the throng of journalists was lacking when he only allowed a few questions.

As the Water Minister he had gone AWOL on the ABC revelations of water stealing and here he was trying his best to over simplify the accusations.

When Turnbull gained the prime ministership conditional on National Party cooperation was that they controlled the Water Ministry. No one has ever asked why this was so important to them.

Perhaps they should now. Or Have we reached the point in politics where TRUTH is something that politicians have convinced us to believe alternative facts rather than TRUTH based on factual evidence and sound arguments?

On this subject it simply highlights the need for a Federal ICAC and I’m at a loss as to why Shorten doesn’t make it official Labor Party policy.

3 As you will have noticed I include a final thought at the conclusion of each post. Sometimes they marry to what I have written and others stand alone. The one I post in my daily piece I don’t always duplicate on Facebook. They are just thoughts that I have written down over a number of years. They are intended to provoke discussion for I don’t claim any ownership of self-righteousness.

This one I posted a couple of days ago:

”Poverty is the fault of the victim but wealth comes from virtue and both are the natural order of things.”

I thought this comment by Stephen Tardrew was worthy of repeating at The AIMN:

”Yes John that sort of thinking drives me mad no rational or logical basis simply rabid bias self-interested opinion. Blame the victim the weapon of scoundrels who have no grasp or reality or ethics. Day after day conservatives peddle this garbage and the victims come to believe in their own inadequacy. Judgment, blame and a large dose of guilt to make the vulnerable responsible for events often out of their control. This is a nasty and cruel method of indoctrination that is a mean and vile reflection of greed and complete intolerance for those living in undue hardship through no fault of their own. What monstrous lies conservatives perpetrate and sadly many follow along like thoughtless sheep.”

My thought for the day

We live in a time where horrible things are being perpetrated on us. The shame is that we have normalised them and adjusted accordingly.”

42 comments

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  1. Gordon Comisari

    The current stagnation of policy formation and implementation in government is due to the incessant politicking, tactics and public relations ploys to win advantage. And don’t forget all those countless hours of intrigue within party factions.

    Career politicians are those who tend to be drawn to this kind of intrigue, to increase their power within the party and entrench their longevity. It all becomes a frenetic business of self-service, while effective policy and progress meander nowhere.

    Too many career journalists are also drawn to this kind of intrigue mainly to entrench their longevity. It all becomes a frenetic business of self-service, while effective policy research and essential background information and relevant context is largely ignored.
    Fortunately there are exceptions. Keep up the good work AIMN and spread the truth!

  2. Jaquix

    It’s become increasingly clear Canavan is a dual citizen. The right to Italian citizenship is conferred “by blood” and continues thru generations unless renounced. His grandparents were Italian, so he “was entitled by right..” as per s.44. His mother getting citizenship for herself virtually irrelevant because of the “entitled” bit, but the fact he knew she got it should have been a red flag to check his own status. Ignorance no excuse. There is nothing grey about his case. Smokescreen story about not signing forms, not consented etc just delaying tactics. White Lies if you like. Should resign. BUT S.44 needs serious and fast reform. Many other pollies probably at risk. Could require an oath of allegiance to Australia asca safeguard, on election, if dual citizenship allowed. Half of Australia has fairly recent migrant background.

  3. Terry2

    This advice from the Italian Consulate in Sydney gives a clue to why Canavan’s Mum would have done this on behalf of her children :

    DETERMINING CITIZENSHIP BY DESCENT
    Italian citizenship can be acquired by descent at the time of one’s birth , as long as one parent was an Italian citizen at the time. Due to previous laws in force before the formation of the Italian Republic women can only transmit citizenship to children born after 1 January 1948 . Prior to this date, only fathers could transmit the Italian citizenship. Any claim for Italian citizenship must be supported by documentary evidence. Once the relevant documents have been produced to this Consulate General, they will be forwarded to the competent Italian Municipality for registration . Therefore a waiting period between 2 and 8 weeks should be expected. Once the procedure has been concluded,applicants will be notified via email from one of our staff members.

    It still remains inconceivable that this exercise was not discussed in the Canavan family particularly as Matt was 25 at the time and would normally be expected to consent to such a fundamental change in his status. Whatever the case, the wording of section 44(i) is quite clear and ignorance is no excuse.

    As regards Malcolm Roberts of One Nation, it has been suggested that his behaviour may indicate that he is a citizen of the planet ZOG !

  4. Pilot

    S44 most certainly doesn’t need an overhaul, it needs adherence! Canavan has to go and go quickly. 1 law for all. These snide bastards need to follow the law! There are no excuses!! Canavan really needs to get out of parliament NOW!!
    F*ck him!
    “My mum did it!” Big bloody deal!! A bloody lame excuse if ever there was one! A load of crap from a lying liberal!!
    He’s in parliament illegally and has to go.

    Pity Shorten et al can’t get their act together and throw this mongrel bred scoundrel out!!

  5. Freethinker

    My question is why Canavan have not resigned as senator.
    He has to resign like the other senators and wait for the Court decision.
    Just because he is a member of the government does not mean that he can do whatever he want.

  6. Kaye Lee

    Malcolm Roberts proved he isn’t an Indian citizen in his tweet….

    “I do not own, nor have I ever owned, a 7-11. I’m not even a chucker ”

    He truly is a vile little man.

  7. Adrianne Haddow

    The hypocrisy surrounding this issue is astounding.

    Two senators , one living in Australia from 3 years old, another born in Canada but living here since babyhood, both from Commonwealth countries, are accused of being ‘sloppy’ on the issue of their nationality and , by force of public opinion, required to resign from their seats and possibly pay back their salaries.

    Yet Canavan, granted dual citizenship of a non-Commonwealth country at the age of 25, still hanging to his job, by the skin of his teeth and the excuse,” My mother did it”.

    I wonder how many trips he made to Italy without requiring a visa in the intervening years.

    If there is any evidence of one law for the ruling trash, and another for the rest of us, this has to be it.

    Yet another case of operating outside the rules, allowed to say sorry, or blame someone else, and then back to the business of stuffing this country for the benefit of their lobbyists.

    Don’t let them get away with it !!!!

  8. Harquebus

    “On this subject it simply highlights the need for a Federal ICAC and I’m at a loss as to why Shorten doesn’t make it official Labor Party policy.”

    Same breed of rat but, from a different stinking hole. Of course he isn’t going to support a Federal ICAC.

    “Politics: From the latin “poli” meaning “many” and tics, meaning “blood sucking creatures.”” — Robyn Williams

  9. Zathras

    Perhaps they should put all politicians into offshore detention and keep them there until they can prove their citizenship status.

    As for the Constitution, the intention of the authors of the US Constitution believed that it should be updated as required by each generation because “as he grows, a man can’t be expected to continue to wear the clothing of a child”. However it now seems to have become somehow sacred and cannot be changed – except by Amendment (someone should remind them that that’s what Amendments are for).

  10. Jerry

    Canavan is another delusional Neo Liberal lying Fundamentalist..Really he’s blaming his mother.Really the wrong types go into politics?

  11. Johno

    So does this mean I can’t celebrate yet.

  12. Wayne Turner

    Funny to see sloppy no political judgment Turnbull in hiding.No sign of him in the MSM,cause only sloppy parties have dual citizens.

    Canavan is another hypocritical born to rule wanker – Rules are only for the rest of us,apparently.He should go now.His excuses are meaningless.All that matter is,if he is a dual citizen when he ran for parliament.Plus his excuses shows another example,that those from the COALition have no shame.My mummy did it,ha,ha,ha.. Does Canavan share the mummy of Shane Warne?

    The unemployed,for example.Should be able to go by the COALition standard then – When they make a mistake and/or don’t meet their requirements.They can use the “Canavan defense” – My mummy’s fault.If it’s good enough for this pathetic mob,it’s good enough for everyone else then.

    COALition the parties of personal responsibility,for everyone else,except NOT for themselves.

  13. helvityni

    I’d say that if you at the age of twenty-four still need mummy to decide about your travels and citizenships, then you are not able at thirty-six to be a fully functioning Senator….

  14. Freethinker

    Roberts has and used a passport from another country, he has to resign as well.
    This have become a joke,a complete disregard for the law.
    Under the constitution, who can force these people to resign?

  15. 245179

    I’m becoming so angry with “mainstream canberra”…..i’m of a view to vote for a certified nutter, hello hansen. ( Libs,Nats, Lab……you are all treating me as a right twat, and you are smug doing it )

  16. Denise Drysdale

    You are all so judgmental.Matt’s a lovely man.

  17. wam

    Now you are talking,Lord, HONEST is the word that define truth and lies.
    I love 2 it is amazing to see and hear a Solanum lycopersicum as our vice-principal(remember the film attack of the killer tomatoes?? when he gets excited he could star in a sequel.)

    “no rational or logical basis” is honest but not true. Just as women don’t consider themselves equal, the poor don’t think they are poor and happily wander with rupert believing there are poor people, especially in Aboriginal communities who have ‘made a lifestyle choice’.

    If stephen were to read your thought he would find the rationale for society some are just satisfied with their lot and some are not some whinge and whine and other spend the time

    Terry2 that explains why mum can be a citizen but not him unless dad was an itie when matt was born?
    Adrianne the boys have done it before check nigel scullion

  18. helvityni

    Matt who? Mathias Cormann? Every mother loves her Matty..

  19. Keitha Granville

    It matters Canada changed it’s laws after snot Denise whether “Matt is a lovely man “. The rules are there to be followed, you can’t claim you didn’t know.
    If the High Court rules his defense is legit, then Waters and Ludlam must be recalled to their seats immediately. They didn’t know either. The difference is they have integrity for the rules, Canavan has demonstrated he has none.

  20. kerri

    I find it interesting that the right are accepting of Canavan’s excuse that his mother didn’t tell him whilst condemning Ludlam and Waters whise mothers didn’t tell them either?
    Ludlam was in his teens and water was a baby.
    Canavan was 25!!!!

  21. Alan Luchetti

    ”Poverty is the fault of the victim but wealth comes from virtue and both are the natural order of things.”

    Amen to that and to the ensuing quote, but we can go further:

    Even if wealth somehow to some degree reflects some aspects of morality, the economy is not a morality play. If celebration of industry and self-reliance and denigration of its assumed opposite causes an increase in inequality to the extent that inequality retards growth and increases unemployment and associated social problems, then the celebration and denigration should be condemned as rationally counter-productive as well as irrationally immoral.

  22. Terry2

    Denise Drysdale

    You are all so judgmental.Matt’s a lovely man.

    Good point, I’m sure that the High Court will take that into account.

  23. Keitha Granville

    sorry for the blot in the last post – should have read

    Canada changed its laws after Waters had left, it matters not Denise whether Matt is a lovely man.

    no offensive comment intended.

  24. ace Jones

    ” I’m at a loss as to why Shorten doesn’t make it official Labor Party policy.”
    Really? ..You John Lord are such a clever man , why write such utter bullshit
    We know and you should know better.

    My Thought For The Day:

    “Woe to those who plan iniquity, to those who plot evil in their mind! At morning’s light they carry it out because it is in their power to do it.”

  25. Michael Taylor

    We once had a PM (Menzies) though born and raised in Australia displayed an allegiance to Great Britain.

    It’s an odd law, but it is the law. Menzies only showed us that it means jack shit.

  26. John Lord

    ace jones “I don’t mind the criticism but please don’t do it on an empty head”

  27. Michael Taylor

    ace Jones, you are not forced to read it.

  28. roma guerin

    This current farce has gone on long enough. Surely there is some Authority (the AEC?) who can call for all MPs and Senators born overseas to produce their renunciation form within the month. That should give them plenty of time to follow due process. Abbott too should be in the queue, I don;t accept his cobbled together paper/s and neither will S.44. After all, there is no government business going on at present, just a lot of argy-bargy, feeding Murdoch papers.

  29. Florence nee Fedup

    Maybe it is important why mum applied for Italian citizenship at that time. Dad was facing long prison term. The family would have been in turmoil. It is hard to believe a 25 year old son wouldn’t have been aware of her actions.

    I suspect there is another story to be revealed.

  30. Florence nee Fedup

    In my youth, the dream of many, even those here for generations, was to visit the old country. Menzies love of the old country cost him his first PMship one could say. Cricket at Lords was more important.

    Then it was natural when one thinks of it. We still travelled on UK passports. An Australian version never existed.

    His love of Britain is a good reason that the present law stays in place. He didn’t put Australia first at any time.

  31. Terry2

    Matt Canavan’s story is falling apart : he says he had never received any correspondence from the Italian Consulate in Sydney over a ten year period but seems to be implying that it may have gone to his Mum’s address, he just doesn’t know.

    How does it go : Oh, what a tangled web we weave…when first we practice to deceive.

    As with all things Adani and the NAIF loan, Canavan has been deceptive.

  32. lefturnahead

    I think a lot of people dont realise,or maybe more do realise now,that many politicians are consumate liars,and there are no better liars in the Parliament then conservative politicians!~~ Now of course the other parties also have liars in their ranks,but they are rank amateurs compared to the LNP.
    Canavan is a terrible liar… or should i say a terribly good liar,and Brandis has spent his whole miserable exsistence lying about everything,and in fact if they told the Australian people the truth re- their warped ideology and true feelings towards their fellow passengers,i am convinced that they would never get elected.
    But more importantly,they know it too!~~!!~

  33. OPPOSE THE MAJOUR PARTIES

    Freethinker. “Under the constitution, who can force these people to resign?” The Governor General certainly can. He should also temporarily suspend all sittings of parliament until the issue of the eligibility of multiple members is sorted out. In the interim he should call for proof of their eligibility. I think a petition needs to be got up to get the GG to intervene asap before the illegals in parliament make any other laws.

  34. OPPOSE THE MAJOUR PARTIES

    This situation has arisen because politicians and their parties are now focused on the prizes they can obtain by becoming MPs and on their own self interests and benefits rather than on the interests of the communities they are required to represent. Their eyes are bigger than their bellies and their hands are stuck in the cookie jar.They are all crooked fraudsters. The biggest criminals in Australia sit in parliaments

  35. Freethinker

    OPPOSE THE MAJOUR PARTIES July 27, 2017 at 7:05 pm
    ……….” I think a petition needs to be got up to get the GG to intervene asap before the illegals in parliament make any other laws.”

    I think that only di Natale is the only one that is asking for Canavan resignation, as I am aware the ALP do not made much noise about it.

  36. Wayne Turner

    Forget the GG,he’s another corrupt free loader.He won’t do anything.He just bleeds taxpayer’s dry for his own self serving greed.

    I think the ALP are worried about the BIASED ANTI-ALP MSM attacking them if they go too hard.Plus,ALP worried if dodgy Canavan gets to stay thanks to the “high” (court).

  37. Matters Not

    Re the Governor-General and he won’t do anything. I, for one, hope so.

    As I recall, the last time the GG did something of significance involved the sacking of a Prime Minister. At that time I protested loudly – that the representative of a foreign royal could dismiss an Australian PM was an abomination.

    Was then. Yet there are calls for a repeat on similar lines. Shakes head.

  38. Freethinker

    Matters Not July 28, 2017 at 10:39 pm
    ” At that time I protested loudly – that the representative of a foreign royal could dismiss an Australian PM was an abomination.”

    Correct me if I am wrong but I am under the impression that you are wrong, is the queen of Australia, and the majority of the Australia born people like to e under her and not Australia e a republic, furthermore the Australian people keep voting for those parties that like to be under the queen.
    Not to mention that the people were happy with the removal of Gough and placing Fraser as a PM.
    Painful reality Matters Not but have to be accepted.

  39. OPPOSE THE MAJOUR PARTIES

    “Poverty is the fault of the victim but wealth comes from virtue and both are the natural order of things.” Although i agree this is the sentiment informing many discourse supportive of capitalism, advocates of this position tend to forget that the fundamental premise of capitalism is that individuals are permitted to invest private wealth, i.e. capital, in means of production to generate profits. That is the basis of capitalism. Hence, in order to be blessed by riches in capitalism one must first have capital to invest. That capital can only be obtained by either working and saving, by inheritance, by a generous low interest loan or by theft – such as occurred in the clearings and enclosures in the UK of the late 17 th and early 18th century and with the australian indigenous people. Hence, it seems to me that poverty results from being denied any of those things or being a victim of theft and if someone is denied the opportunity to work or is a victim of systemic theft then that is no fault of theirs. most of the rich today are so due to inheritance. fewer are rich because of their own ingenuity. Doesn’t seem to me that the ‘natural order of things’ has much to do with it as it is completely ‘human made’

  40. OPPOSE THE MAJOUR PARTIES

    “Poverty is the fault of the victim but wealth comes from virtue and both are the natural order of things.” Although i agree this is the sentiment informing many discourse supportive of capitalism, advocates of this position tend to forget that the fundamental premise of capitalism is that individuals are permitted to invest private wealth, i.e. capitalism, in means of production to generate profits. That is the basis of capitalism. Hence, in order to be blessed by riches in capitalism one must first have capital to invest. That capital can only be obtained by either working and saving, by inheritance, by a generous low interest loan or by theft – such as occurred in the clearings and enclosures in the UK in the late 17 th and early 18th century and with the australian indigenous people. Hence, it seems to me that poverty results from being denied any of those things or being a victim of theft and if someone is denied the opportunity to work or is a victim of systemic theft then that is no fault of theirs. most of the rich today are so due to inheritance. fewer are because of their own ingenuity. diesnt seem to me that the ‘natural order of things’ has much to do with it as it is completely ‘human made’

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