Flat White

Responsible government and the monarchy

David Long

Getty Images

David Long

12 June 2022

8:00 AM

Given the speed with which Anthony Albanese attacked both the Australian Constitution and the Monarchy after the Australian election, you could be forgiven for thinking that he harbours some sort of grudge against the Australian people whose Constitution it is. Perhaps he is more Woke than we thought?

For whatever reason, the two most important items announced by Albanese on his ‘to do’ list both require amendments to the Constitution: one to replace the Monarch with a President (but only after Her Majesty’s death); the other to amend the Constitution to recognise an Indigenous Voice – which is an extra chamber of racially selected representatives.

I have previously explained my opposition to the latter concept and see no benefit from repeating what I said. Our indigenous citizens have been largely ignored and left to their own devices for far too long, occupying the remotest and most inhospitable regions; but a special constitutional voice for Indigenous peoples is racist, no matter how it is presented, and our Constitution demands its colour blind character be maintained.

It is not as if an Albanese government is unable to govern without the amendments. There is much to be done for all Australians now that left-wing state ALP governments have lifted their knees from Australian throats and an incompetent Liberal government has been removed. Unfortunately, the new Prime Minister seems determined to change Australia to reflect his dystopian ideology.

Both of the Albanese amendments reflect a very Woke view of our Constitution as one of privilege – monarchic, class privilege, and white patriarchal privilege – just the sort of thing to attract Australian religious leaders who charged lemming-like straight towards the Indigenous Voice cliff.

Mr Albanese’s support for the Indigenous Voice is hardly flattering since it is an admission that he doesn’t know how to govern for Indigenous Australians without their advice. But, is the Monarch’s role in our Constitution just an example of a privilege, or is it a clever contrivance by our founders in support of national unity? Are we only a constitutional monarchy?

To properly characterise any government it is necessary to know the source of its authority. All Australian parliaments, state and federal, embody government by representation. As those representatives are chosen by the Australian people, the source of an Australian government’s authority to govern is the Australian people.

Except, Australian parliaments are not democracies.

In a pure democracy, all the citizens are equal participants in the law-making process, meeting together and voting for what each thinks is necessary, with the majority determining what laws are passed. A pure democracy is always small. It is not, therefore, suited to a large country like Australia.

Students of history will know that the chief danger to democracies is the formation of factions. These are groups of citizens who pursue their own interests at the expense of everyone else. The cure for factional politics is government by representation. In Australia, the majority of voters choose a representative from all candidates that they think is best to represent them.

The government consisting of representatives is the government that a majority considers is the best and is what James Madison (in Federalist 10) called a republic. It is a democratic republic where every citizen votes for the representatives. This means that Australia is a democratic republic.

If the people are the source of political power in Australia, it is difficult to understand why anyone would think that our founding fathers would make a government responsible to the Parliament and the people, but grant the power to dismiss them for any reason to a Governor-General who is accountable to no one. In fact, they didn’t.

It was Sir John Kerr’s invention; but even so, it is no reason to remove the Monarch.

The vast majority of Australians have shown nothing but genuine affection and respect for the Monarchy. Whenever the Queen or her family visited they have been very warmly welcomed, despite the white-anting of the Monarchy by the thoughtless Left in the media.

Mr Albanese should take careful notice of the television ratings success of the celebration of the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee, particularly the first night with the Trooping of the Colour; the fact that the salute was taken by Prince Charles should put an end to Albanese’s rudeness and the slights Charles has received from the Left.

That ratings success revealed the Monarchy’s unifying power throughout Australia’s middle class and their affection for Queen Elizabeth II. The British Monarch has demonstrated her political impartiality for 70 years. She has remained aloof from the partisan battles fought on the floor of the Westminster Parliament.

Being above the Parliament, she has been the symbol of a unified nation despite the differences in political opinions inside the Parliament. And she has done that by only ever acting on the advice of a minister, who is responsible to the Parliament for his bad judgment and ultimately to the people.

That was precisely how the Australian Constitution was designed more than 120 years ago and, as the Australian constitutional Monarch, that has been the example she set for her agent in Canberra; who have, with one exception, followed her example. Australia’s Governor-General must remain aloof from the partisan battles in Canberra.

Mr Albanese’s mooted amendments are ideological; but no sensible person would replace the unifying effect of an impartial Crown with a partisan President chosen from a partisan public: look now to the United States for a better view.

Responsible government is only possible in a republican Constitution if a powerless Monarch is the unifying Head of State while the real head of state, the Prime Minister, is accountable to the Parliament. The removal of the Monarchy from its place in our Constitution will signal the end of responsible government, an end that will be accelerated if that President is given reserve powers for they do not currently exist.

If Mr Albanese does manage to amend the Constitution as he plans, he will have divided the Australian people in a profound way from which it may never recover. We must hope that the Australian people see through the propaganda and reject the amendments when they get the opportunity.

PS: I had a nightmare: the ALP Presidential election campaign for ‘Chairman Rudd’ or ‘Glorious Leader Turnbull’ with the catchy jingle: ‘We’re so proud’ sung to the tune of ‘He’s so vain’.

Got something to add? Join the discussion and comment below.

Published by Nelle

I am interested in writing short stories for my pleasure and my family's but although I have published four family books I will not go down that path again but still want what I write out there so I will see how this goes

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: