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Canberra observed « Previous | |Next »
October 1, 2005

I was suprised by the ease in which the state premiers embraced the new counter- terrorism laws that override the basic legal rights of citizens and the lack of concern about this amongst the Canberra Press Gallery. I still am.

Mike Rann, the tub thumbing law and order Premier of South Australia, even talked in terms of the 'enemy within' with all its 1950s McCarthyite resonances. Who are the 'enemy within'? Which citizens do the premiers have in mind?

The justification for these proposed laws were confidential security briefings by security agencies with a very poor track record in threat assessment. We citizens have been given no reason to change this judgement--all we have are some press releases that identifed the 'enemy within' with those citizens with extreme views. So the threat to our security and safetyfrom bombs going off in our midst can only be judged as vague and shadowy at the very best.


Vagueness covers over what is happening ---a state of exception or emergency--is being turned into the normal. Detecting, disrupting, and preventing terrrorist attacks is now the norm.

The mandarins--those elite Canberra bureaucrats who keep democracy at bay---hold that the traditional ideas of individual civil rights are no longer appropriate in the age of terrorism and in a more dangerous world. The mandarins speak the Leviathan language of Thomas Hobbes, as they diligently work to shift power to the state and to exempt the actions of its coercive arrm from the rule of law.

| Posted by Gary Sauer-Thompson at 3:10 PM | | Comments (2)


It's sad to see that the 9/11 Patriot act Precident is being carried out by nation states across the world.

Govermnets using fear to bully their citisens into blind obidience. Sound familar? 1930's Europe??

yes, the bombings take place overseas. The underminingg of democratic freedoms takes place in Australia, with little evidence being produced by the security forces about homegrown terrorism.