Whenever the word “reform” is used by the political class we should be wary. A significant weapon to support this “reform” agenda has been to obliterate the people’s memory about better times before the government intervened and took over vast areas of our lives.
Most people today just do not know what hospitals, general practice, and universities were like before the Whitlam government. In a variation of the Stockholm syndrome, they will cling to what they know, making a return to the tried and tested difficult if not impossible.
The same is true in areas of social policy. It is principally for this reason that the elites plan to transfer political power to the judges. They have before them one significant success. This was the significant relaxation of abortion law in 1971 which was achieved through a judgement by a NSW lower court judge. He went where the politicians at the time did not dare go.
So part of the strategy for the elites agenda is to have judges make "reforms" which are otherwise politically impossible. Eventually a new generation will not know what once worked well, and with the substitution of secular religion will be unable to distinguish between what is right and what is wrong.
The Charter of Rights proposed by the expatriate and republican Queen’s Counsel Geoffrey Robertson is apposite. While it would guarantee the right to life, this is only after birth. Putting aside proposals for euthanasia laws, this is of course the only instance when the right to life is under threat at the moment. The effect of the Charter will thus be to preserve the decades old judicial enactment of a liberal abortion law. I wonder what Father Brennan, the Jesuit chairman of the federal government’s human rights consultation process, thinks of this.
It is fundamental to the reform agenda that the individuals be made to forget better times, while losing much of their freedom and being relieved of much of their responsibility for their actions. The latter is reflected in the way in which the criminal law is applied or not applied. The former is being achieved by the education system.
The corollary of this aspect of the reform agenda has been to increase substantially the size of the dependent class. Ironically Marx had dismissed the nineteenth century predecessors of this class under the pejorative term, the lumpenproletariat. Rather he saw the proletariat, the working class as the vanguard of his agenda. Little did he know that it would be the successors to the lumpenproletariat who would be the pillar of the new socialism.
Since the nineteenth century the lumpenproletariat has been converted from a marginal group of no electoral import, eking out an existence so precarious that in some European countries starvation was not an unknown prospect. Today their lives are generously subsidised and made comfortable through the taxes of those who work. The members of this class are, permanently or for a term, dependent on welfare but they are neither beyond working age, injured through accident, ill through natural causes, nor otherwise deserving.
Under the influence of the theories of the left elites, (including, it has been argued, the manipulation of the immigration programme for electoral purposes) this class has significantly increased in size. To some degree membership has even become hereditary, so that successive generations belong to the class.
In a period of unprecedented affluence, and until recently full employment, one in six of those of working age now receive a full pension. We have one of the lowest workforce participation rates in the developed world.
This class is entirely the creation of politicians. This has been achieved both by the undermining of the traditional family through the law, and the creation of the addiction that is welfare dependency. Some argue that an obsessive almost religious application of free trade principles has helped to remove manual work, even though all other countries practice free trade selectively.
Welfare dependency is of course a miserable unenviable and stunting condition, but it suits the elites to keep people thus.
This class fears the Coalition, but probably excessively. Whenever coalition governments decide to “do something”, the reaction of the welfare protection industry, with the assistance of a sympathetic media, is usually sufficient to at least weaken any measures proposed. This class knows who will look after them, and they can be guaranteed to vote that way. With compulsory and preferential voting, few of their votes go astray.
But they too have lost the memory of the freedom their ancestors once enjoyed within stable families and with adults working gainfully.
For both the members of this class and the working families doomed to support them these “reforms’ have been a monumental failure.