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The government should commit to their own Australian Values Statement

The Coalition government talk a lot about Australian values. They make prospective citizens sign an Australian Values Statement.

“Australian society values respect for the freedom and dignity of the individual, freedom of religion, commitment to the rule of law, Parliamentary democracy, equality of men and women and a spirit of egalitarianism that embraces mutual respect, tolerance, fair play and compassion for those in need and pursuit of the public good.”

Where is the freedom and dignity for the people who came seeking our help but were, instead, condemned to indefinite incarceration with no hope for the future, purely for political purposes?

Where is the compassion for the family locked up on Christmas Island as their community mourns their loss and fights against the whimsical decision of an inadequate politician who desperately wants to look tough?

Where is the spirit of egalitarianism and compassion for those in need when over 3 million people are living in poverty in Australia, as the government boasts about decades of continuous growth and…drum roll….a surplus, whilst steadfastly refusing to increase the rate of unemployment payments? Why are we hearing so many examples of horrendous abuse and neglect in aged and disability care?

Commitment to the rule of law? Give me a break. Angus Taylor, Michaelia Cash, Arthur Sinodinis, Stuart Robert, Barnaby Joyce, Mal Brough? Foreign bribery allegations not investigated, limited tenders gifted to mates, jobs for the boys and girls handed out like lollies, departmental recommendations ignored in favour of porkbarrelling, systemic rorting of expense claims, interference in police investigations, refusal to comply with freedom of information – the only crime this government recognises is getting caught and then you blame whoever caught you.

If Australian values include equality of men and women, why are men still voting on whether women are criminals for exercising autonomy over their own body? Why is there a gender pay gap? Why are women so underrepresented in power positions? Why is sexual harassment so prevalent in workplaces? Why are so many of the few female government politicians complaining about bullying, only to be silenced with a promotion, a trip, or exile?

Where is the mutual respect and fair play in the peremptory dismissal of the Uluru Statement From the Heart and the hysterical rhetoric about a non-existent third chamber just because Aboriginal people feel they might be able to better inform how to address the challenges they face than Tony Abbott?

As for the “pursuit of the public good”, that has been abandoned in favour of wealth creation and competitive advantage as epitomised by our blind rush towards climate catastrophe and mass extinction. We might be resource rich, but our government would rather export that and make us pay a fortune for power domestically, as long as their buddies are making a buck. They exacerbate droughts by selling off water and buying it back, creating a water market ripe for profiteering. They scoff at the link between climate change and increasingly devastating disasters.

They want Australians to be quiet while they trash our values in favour of power, greed and personal ambition.

Unfortunately, we can’t deport them for another few years. But we MUST keep holding them to account and demanding that they, too, uphold the standards that they say Australian society values.

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6 comments

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  1. Baby Jewels

    I think it’s time the Australian Government had it explained to them what those words mean. – the Australian Values Statement. Just a con-job like everything else they have their filthy paws on. Does anybody still believe anything this marketing con, the Liberal Party, say? It’s really getting vomitous.

  2. Keith

    Thank you Kaye, right on the money as per usual.

    Their Australian Values Statement is a bit like a Mission Statement, once created it is forgotten by the practitioners meant to follow their Mission Statement. It’s almost hilarious that the robo debts look as though they will need to be paid back to the people hit by the debts. Though the nastiness in the way the debts were handled in the first place was quite appalling.

    A questionnaire from the Liberal Party provides an avenue to tell them how we feel.

    https://www.liberal.org.au/morrison-government-wants-hear-you?fbclid=IwAR0NHfWcf5-ImCzl2lwR9JKhYRBVDrE2igtJU-F2pV1wgD-GVwob8mpIq4w

    My restrained response on climate change:

    Yesterday, a Nature Journal article described how we may have exceeded climate tipping points or are about to reach them. The study is one of a number that have been published over the last few years. There is objective data from NASA about how greenhouse gases are harming the atmosphere very recently published (data, not supposition); oceans are warming; permafrost is thawing; sea ice in the Arctic Ocean is declining; there are huge bush/wild fires experienced around Earth, now being experienced in areas once considered moist; water in urban areas in numerous areas is down to critical levels; glaciers are disappearing; some parts of Earth are becoming uninhabital etc. It is facile to suggest it has always happened in the past; paleoclimatologists have found analogs for a number of those climate changes in the past.

    Australia is a huge exporter of fossil fuels, it is a mere accounting trick to suggest that Australia is meeting it’s goals. The fossil fuels exported when used do damage to the Earth’s atmosphere which come back and bite us. What we are meant to accept is that millions of years of sequestering organic materials; and then, burnt in a nano second in comparison, has no impact on a finite atmosphere.

    It is young people who will feel the effects of a changing climate, would you not have us worry about them.

  3. whatever

    This Government appears to suffering the same psychosis as James Gargasoulas.

  4. Kaye Lee

    The latest emissions data has just been released.

    Emissions for the year to June 2019 are estimated to be down 0.1 per cent on the previous year. Strong growth in emissions from Australia’s export industries, principally LNG, were offset by the combination of the ongoing reduction in emissions from electricity (down 1.2 per cent) and the effects of the drought on agriculture (down 5.9 per cent).

    Australia’s emissions for the year to June 2019 were 0.8 per cent below emissions in 2000 (our target is 5% below by 2020).

    https://www.environment.gov.au/climate-change/climate-science-data/greenhouse-gas-measurement/publications/quarterly-update-australias-nggi-jun-2019

    Angus must be saying thank god for the drought or emissions would have increased again.

  5. RosemaryJ36

    Has anyone calculated how much the bush fires have added to our emissions?The wood that burned wasn’t even given time to be fossilised!

  6. Bronte ALLAN

    Great article, as usual, Kaye! “Australian Values” WTF?? Certainly, this fcking COALition mob would only value anything that makes them money & increases status & wealth for all their obscenely wealthy business mates. To hell with all the persons on the pittance called the Dole, any one on a Pension or on any sort of Welfare etc. But it is obviously ok, because Slo Mo says it is, & he would definitely know this, right?

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