The Voice

The Voice Advocates’ Tower of Babel

If one thing is certain in terms of the Voice, most Australians don’t really understand what it means, how it will work, what it will cost and how it will be set up. The reason for this widespread ignorance is because the Albanese government has declined to explain such critical factors in anything resembling clear and coherent detail. Who in their right mind would sign on for anything on the basis of ‘Trust us, we’re from the government. You don’t need to worry about any of that’?

Trust, eh? As the government is dragging its heels in regard to Section 11 of the Referendums Act, which requires the Australian Electoral Commission to distribute a pamphlet with written arguments both for and against the passage of the referendum, trust is hard come by. This pamphlet, to be of no more than 2000 words, must be delivered to each Australian household with an enrolled elector no later than 14 days before polling day.

Clearly, the government still has time to create and distribute said pamphlet, which we can expect to arrive only after Australians have been battered for months with the guilt-waddy of slick ads and promotions. Nominally non-partisan TV ads, which are anything but, have been screening for weeks now. As Sky’s James Morrow explains in the clip below, the strategy is to pitch the Yes case by means of stealth and emotionally charged imagery.

The reason they can get away with this is that the Referendums Act is hardly what it once was. As the parliamentary library explains (emphasis added):

The Act [allowed] the Commonwealth to only spend money in relation to preparing and distributing the pamphlets and prohibits any Government-funded referendum education campaign or advertising. However, in 1999 the Government legislated to allow additional expenditure, such as for advertising, in relation to that specific referendum, and the recent history of public funding of referendum campaigns has been relatively ad hoc.

The Government recently amended the Act to clarify that the Government is not prevented from ‘expending money in relation to neutral public civics education and awareness activities’ (subsection 11(6)) but that campaign ‘must not address the arguments for or against a proposed law for the alteration of the Constitution’ (subsection 11(7)).

So, the public is presented with an ostensibly ‘neutral’ campaign that is subtly pro-Yes,. This hardly seems right, let alone fair, and it also means most voters will rely by default on what coverage the media is offering. Unfortunately, in the realm of mainstream media, with some noble exceptions, there is much more promoting of a Yes vote than the No case. If you doubt that, spend a little time with the ABC and all will be made clear.

Given the lack of clarity on the Voice, its structure, function and powers, there is little basis for the average Australian to gain a reasoned perspective. Can it solve the problems besetting Aboriginal communities? Dozens if not hundreds of bodies and groups, any number of consultatants, billions of dollars and decades of time and attention have failed, so why would a Voice be any different? How many live in such communities? A small minority.

Based on projections for 2022, among Indigenous Australians: 38% (344,800) live in Major cities. 44% (395,900) live in Inner and outer regional areas. 17% (155,600) live in Remote and very remote areas combined

The Yes camp suggests Australians owe those with Aboriginal ancestry special treatment because their bloodlines go back 40,000+ years, which makes them both unique and deserving of their own third chamber, as Tony Abbott has described it. And bear in mind, too, that Voice representatives will be appointed, not democratically elected. How is any of that fair, constitutional, not racist? The basic and animating premise of rights conferred by longevity of ancestry is that the further back it goes, the more superior is the individual’s quality of citizenship — so much so that unique and special rights are warranted. Appraised logically, this means someone with or claiming, a la Bruce Pascoe, Aboriginal ancestry is top-ranked while a newly naturalised migrant is on the bottom rung. None of this is democratic and all of it an insult to Australians in general and migrants and the children of migrants in particular.

We also have the insanity that someone like Senator Jacinta Price, if the Voice gets up, is a superior citizen along with her mother and her sons, while her white father and white husband are inferior citizens despite all living and sharing the same lives.

Would a Yes victory mean that in divorce situations the parent with some Aboriginal ancestry gets greater rights over any children? It may well because, quite deliberately on the part of Albanese & Co, nothing has been spelled out. It is an important question because most Australians with Aboriginal ancestry are in mixed marriages. In fact, we have more than two centuries of intermarriage, which is why most Australians with Aboriginal ancestry are more Anglo-European than anything else. This fact alone is a testament to the lack of racism in Australia. As The Guardian reported

Analysis of the 2006 census reveals that 52% of Aboriginal men and 55% of Aboriginal women were married to non-Aboriginal Australians. In Australia’s larger east coast cities, the intermarriage rate was well above 70%; in Sydney, as many as nine out of 10 university-educated Aborigines had a non-indigenous partner.

We know the majority of Australians with Aboriginal ancestry, now said to number some 900,000, a figure that includes self-identifiers with truly trivial Aboriginal ancestry, are doing fine. Most lead the same sort of lives and experience the same outcomes as other Australians; they have absolutely nothing in common with those struggling in tribal/clan communities, where the least assimilated remain trapped. As to the urban elites, anyone who thinks Linda Burney, Marcia Langton, Ken Wyatt, Lidia Thorpe or Noel Pearson lives the same life as those in remote communities needs to think again.

The notion that a Voice will be able to speak for Aborigines as a whole — for those in remote communities and the indigenous elite alike — is absurd. Consider, for example, how no single voice now speaks, or could ever speak, for Aborigines elected to parliament. What common ground exists for Jacinta Nampijinpa Price and Lidia Thorpe?  We don’t have one voice speaking for each Aboriginal community, and it is certain we will never hear a single voice for all communities, let alone one for every individual Australian who has proclaimed their indigeneity via the simple expedient of ticking a census-form box. And yet we are being asked to change our Constitution, betray our democracy and formally accept legislated racism by voting for a concept which does not exist and never can exist.  How could it? In 1788 there were between 350 and 500 different groups, most not big enough to be called tribes, let alone ‘nations’; rather, they were family groups lacking a common language and frequently at war. Divided then and divided now, yet somehow, we are told, the Voice will foster unity and common purpose. This is where unjustified optimism becomes full-blown delusion.

In Aboriginal communities the clans are still at war with each other and, as Noel Pearson recently demonstrated with his attack on Mick Gooda, there is infighting even amongst the elites. If the urban Aborigine Lites can’t agree with each other, what hope is there?

Meanwhile, with nothing clarified or spelled out in terms of this Voice,  Australians can only sift the propaganda and snippets of information, apply common sense and try to avoid making a serious error of judgement which our children and grandchildren will inherit to their terrible cost.

When the Constitution and our democracy are at stake, a trusting, unfussed and unquestioning ‘She’ll be right, mate’ just doesn’t cut it.

28 thoughts on “The Voice Advocates’ Tower of Babel

  • Daffy says:

    A mere 10 seconds of dedicated thought would bring the conclusion that ‘the Voice’ is a manipulative con job. As with anything the Left does, the issue is never the issue; the issue is the revolution…or in this case, its twin: power.

    • Greg Jeffs says:

      The pitting of the race guilty and the politorigenes against the nation is indeed a clever trick. The stated ideas and aims of the Voice already exist in a variety of government organisations and agencies. There is no coherent explanation as to why The Constitution has to be altered. Such an alteration will achieve at least two vital objectives of those wishing to gain ascendancy over democracy. One, it will demonstrate that The Constitution can be altered for spurious reasons and, two, greater power can be delivered to unelected activist lawyers (the useful omnibus term ‘lawyers’ includes, of course, all judicial officials). Can the immature and the indoctrinated be ‘conned’ as Daffy says, into voting for this nonsense if it actually makes it to a referendum?

      • George says:

        In addition to the alteration of the Constitution being unnecessary, potentially irreversible if it does’t work in the way “people” had hoped, and divisive. The actual proposed amendment to the Constitution provides that:

        “the Parliament shall, subject to this Constitution, have power to make laws with respect to matters relating to the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Voice, including its composition, functions, powers and procedures.”

        So the “functions” and “powers” of the voice are going to be determined by the Parliament – not the people. A terrifying concept.

    • john mac says:

      Right again Daffy ! This is a power/reparations shakedown a la blm , designed to divide , alienate and subjugate . I pray a large majority vote “No” for anything less , will see us here again in the near future , the left being nothing if not persistent in their “revolution”

  • padraic says:

    Still, despite the massive YES effort, they are a bit worried. I saw the other day that we are assured that Bob Hawke wants us to vote Yes.

  • Adelagado says:

    Speaking of babble. I see Fraser Island is now K’gari. Why the apostrophe? As Aboriginals had no written language, K’gari is not a translation of an aboriginal written word. It is an English representation on an aboriginal spoken word. (Like kangaroo or Willcannia). Spelling it K’gari is just some lame attempt at pseudo mystical bullshit.

    • Andrew Campbell says:

      And their ABC is at the forefront of this re-naming. So in the latest ‘Everyday’ section of ABC online, an article on the TV show ‘Alone’, Tasmania has a new name ‘lutruwita.’ (not capitalised). What’s the evidence that the many tribes of Tasmania had a concept that their land was an entity? What gives their ABC the right to re-name whole states?

      • john mac says:

        Yes , Their ABC classical , now blithely (and smugly) refer to all regions and cities in aboriginal names , after softly peddling this for over a year . For a High art section of a govt funded institution this is ludicrous , and insulting to it’s listeners . How long before they start learning some local dialect and speak only in it to introduce Mozart or Beethoven ? Or , as is their recent policy , infuse more and more aboriginal “music” (sticks and wailing) into the playlist ? Add their increasingly political hobby horses in Cheetham , Eddy Lebrock , Polly syllable of “passenger” (her “About” bio on google typically vomit inducing.) and even over at ABC country , who gets a prime gig ? Lesbian activist Beccy Cole . They are nothing if not “inclusive ” even at the expense of the listener .

    • Brian Boru says:

      “pseudo mystical bullshit”, what a marvelous expression to describe what we are being fed. I don’t want to get all grammatical about it’s inherent contradictions but it does have a poetic ring. Congratulations Adelagado on you coining a new addition to the lexicon.

      • nfw says:

        “…I don’t want to get all grammatical about it’s …” It’s? As in it is or it has? Or perhaps its, the third person singular possessive case pronoun?

        • Brian Boru says:

          You are correct. Its is possessive. (I think I will blame the phone for automatically putting the apostrophe there.) I have to admit though that I did not know that until about 10 years ago when a retired teacher explained it to me.

      • Adelagado says:

        Pronunciation guides tell us K’gari is pronounced as ‘Gurrie’. So why not just spell it that way? Doesn’t look exotic enough I guess.

    • nfw says:

      I was just wondering which ab-original language will rule supreme and from where the dictionary, grammar and alphabet will come? Love the concept of “…just some lame attempt at pseudo mystical bullshit.”

    • Jack Brown says:

      The locals had no written language so any spelling is fake. When announced on the news the reader said in all seriousness that the name meant ‘Paradise’, as authentically Aboriginal as any Queensland tourist resort name, or the term ‘First Nations’, and had been that name for 60000 years, a claim impossible to verify or falsify.

  • RobyH says:

    This is truly the most absurd and offensive proposal ever made in Australia’s political history

    Can’t vote for it. Can’t stand for it or be elected to it. Will not be able to work in it. Will cost billions that will have to be paid for by everyone else. Can’t close it if it is caustic, abrasive, offensive, racists, incompetent or corrupt. Powers will be determined by the High Court – not the government.

    Marketed as recognition but has nothing to do with recognition – the Voice will have greater power than the UK House of Lords with with greater reach and represent a Blak only government of our government and all public service

    Most Aboriginals aren’t disadvantaged. Not all Aboriginals are Aboriginal. The Voice is part of the Uluṟu poison chalice – it isn’t about disadvantage – it is about historical vengeance, land, reparations, money, Blak Power and its ultimate aim co-sovereignty of our great sovereign nation.

    How could anyone except an Aboriginal (who thinks they will gain power/money) possibly vote for this absurd, offensive and racist proposal.

    • John F Williams says:

      Well said RobyH. This is but one of the many reasons for rejection of this referendum.
      Firstly, no matter how one reads it, it is a Racist document in that it proposes laws and advantages to one group of citizens only, and those advantages based solely on Race. These advantages will devolve through all descendants for all time.
      For this reason alone it should be rejected by all thinking Australians.
      Secondly, the Voice is to be embedded in the Constitution where it is untouchable by Parliament. This is regressive as it removes ultimate authority from Parliament, something which should never be allowed to happen in a Democracy.
      For this reason alone, it should be rejected by all thinking Australians.
      Thirdly,the Federal government does not present the Yes and the No cases equally to the referendum voters, as is its duty, but supports only the Yes case financially, in publicity, and in taxation deductibility.
      For this reason alone it should be rejected by all thinking Australians.
      Fourthly, the essential details of the rules and procedures in relation to the operation of the Voice will not be revealed to the Australian Public until After a successful referendum has passed! This smells strongly of fish, and is no basis on which to buy a huge change to our country’s governance, nor indeed even to buy a second hand car.
      For this reason alone, it should be rejected by all thinking Australians
      Fifthly, the justification for the Voice, is based very firmly in the concept of Inherited White Guilt, a fabricated concept, judging historic events by the mores of today, that if fairly applied, would find all of humanity condemned as guilty, White and Black Fella alike, as we all have had violence in some part of our antecedent history.
      “Use every man according to his desert and who should ‘scape whipping?”, as the great Bard said in Hamlet
      For this alone, it should be rejected by all thinking Australians.
      If, even at this late stage, our most eminent judges can disagree, as they do, about the consequences of this Voice proposal, the average Australian would be well advised to let this one run through to the keeper.

    • john mac says:

      Yep , RobyH it’s all about vengeance and money , will achieve nothing but rancour and division , which is just what the architects of this monstrosity and their useful idiots want. We need a 60% no vote at least , to weather the predictable slurs , and derail this movement . They will keep trying however as the left are nothing if not obsessed and persistent .

  • gilmay97 says:

    Linda Burney said in Parliament “Under our constitution Australia and Torres Strait Island Australians have had no voice, no say in matters that affected our communities.”
    Really: “… have had no voice, no say in matters that affected our communities,” that Linda Burney is baloney — Koolymoot from Kurdaitcha.
    There are 11 indigenous MP’s in Canberra, That equals 4.84 percent of the 227 parliamentarians for a group that is only 3.2 percent of the population — other Australians are 96.8%; on that basis they are over represented.

    There were 3,273 registered Aboriginal Corporations, making representations to governments delivering health and other services.
    National Indigenous Australian Agency (NIAA) has 1,317 employees costing close to 4.5 billion dollars this financial year. They are the commonwealth body responsible for policy development, implementation and service delivery for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples — They are their VOICE.
    Over $34 billion a year goes to Indigenous people and communities; aboriginal organizations receive hundreds of millions of dollars from mining royalties every year. More than 230 million dollars in the NT alone. Taxpayer now provide of $39 billion dollars a year on Aboriginal needs, more than is spent on Medicare.
    The above appear the irrefutable evidence Linda Burney has misled Parliament and the people of Australia — Aboriginals are over represented, over funded and over heard.
    They DO have a BIG VOICE IN LAW AND IN GOVERNMENT — for Linda Burney NOT to know that is ignorance, she should be replaced.
    The Indigenous Voice to Parliament activists appears a bunch of hypocrites; like all other people Aboriginals have achieved where they currently are in life purely based on their abilities.

  • gilmay97 says:

    The current Aboriginals are NOT and never were the nation’s first people, there were many races before them who left their artifacts and widely different rock art as evidence — that the current mob are committing deliberate fraud by claiming it was their ancestors — it is not, they were not related to the previous people who inhabited Australia.
    Distorted education, media and political statements have been feeding this lie for so long people are believing it because there has never space given to correct it with truthful history, the media and politicians were taught it at school where indoctrination over-road education. It is a sad state of affairs when people actually believe their own lies, it is a serious mental health issue affecting many people.

    Exactly as Vladimir Lenin said – “A lie told often enough becomes truth.”

    The current aboriginals arrived from India 141 generations ago or about 4,230 years, as determined by scientific mtDNA study at one of the worlds most respected institutes by Dr Irina Pugach at the Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology at Leipzig, Germany, and her doctorate colleagues, who analyzed genetic variation from across the genome from aboriginal Australians, New Guineans, Island Southeast Asians, and Indians. Their mtDNA findings prove substantial gene flow from India to Australia about 4,230 years ago. i.e. during the Holocene and well before European contact. Supported by Indian research into DNA variations in the haplogroups shared between India and Australian aboriginals.
    We can prove the date as Indians arrived after the ice-age had melted and the sea level again rose isolating Tasmania preventing the Indians getting there and taking the Dingo with them, that they picked up coming down through Sulawesi (DNA proven). Thus, the dingo never killed off the Tasmanian Devil or Thylacine as they did on the mainland. The Tasmanian aboriginals were the earlier people of Australia, of short statue and frizzy hair from Papua, that the later Indians killed off on the mainland.
    There are skulls of nine different rases having lived here before the Indians arrive and endocast skulls found in ironstone, limestone and in volcanic ash ten million years old.

    1. In 265 AD: The “Atlas of Foreign Countries”, written between 265 and 316 A.D., Chinese Sea Captains describes the far north coast of the mysterious great south land as being inhabited by a race of one-metre-tall black pygmies — an obvious reference to the pygmy-sized Aboriginals identified by Australian anthropologist Norman B. Tindale in the mountains above Cairns, Queensland.

    2. In the 1400’s and 1500’s, Dutch and Portuguese sailors sighting the Western Australian coastline noted “tall natives in warfare chasing and killing hordes of “little” native peoples”.
    Early explorers and settlers’ brothers Frank and Alexander Jardine (The Jardine diaries) who settled Cape York recorded how they witnessed the little Negritos being hunted down like kangaroos by the taller aborigines. Were the little people easier to hunt than kangaroos?

    3. Pre-1770 explorers such as William Dampier, who visited West and Northern Australia in the late 1600’s, described the existence of a race of short people with “hair curled like the Negroes” – clearly not the modern Indian aborigine.

    4. The aboriginal legend of the Kimberley Gwion Gwion paintings, is that the old red paintings are
    self-portraits of ‘giro giro’ tiny people who lived in the area in the past.

    This is evidence of other races having lived there long before the current Indian mob arrived.
    Extract from a soon to be released book “The UNKNOWN History of Australia’.

    • Sirocco says:

      Gilmay97. I am intrigued by the assertion that “In the 1400’s and 1500’s, Dutch and Portuguese sailors sighting the Western Australian coastline”. My history books do not record that the Portuguese ever got to Australia much less via WA. The Portuguese (Diaz, Gama etc) hugged the African coastline putting down stone cairns as they inched their way up the African east coast, finally arriving at the tip of India at Calicut in 1498.

      The Dutch did indeed pioneer the Roaring Forties CapeTown to Perth route as early as 1610, but this places it in the 17th century.

    • john mac says:

      Well , however long they’ve been here (60,000 years ?- why not 100.000 ?) they never got around to inventing the wheel , anything mechanical , or any loadbearing structures . We bring all this , plus health care , hygiene , air-conditioning , vehicles of every type , and free sit-down money … ungrateful doesn’t begin to cover it . I’m white (1/16 Canadian Cree/Ojibwe) and I’m grateful as can possibly be to have been born in the west with all it has to offer me . can NO Aboriginal say that out loud ?!

      • rosross says:

        Putting aside the fact they never learned to work with clay which existed in abundance, and produce pottery as others did, bearing in mind they had no permanent dwellings, neither did they learn to work gold as ornaments which is easy to carry around, given the easy access to gold in many places. Neither did they develop a needle and learn to sew garments, or develop the bow and arrow. Nothing really beyond a simple stone-age way of life. Then again at the rate they killed their babies to keep numbers down there was no pressure to evolve.

  • Botswana O'Hooligan says:

    The bottom line eludes me because Labor are always “in it” to further Labor and they must know that they are making a rod for their own backs for the unelected members of the “voice” will have the power of veto over most parliamentary proposals. Frightening when you think about it.

  • Brian Boru says:

    In debate I suppose it is appropriate to call out bullshit. However an advocate is best advised to avoid too much chasing of the other sides rabbits but to concentrate on the truth of their own argument. We need to be aware of this beyond our own echo chamber.
    For me the basic truth is that the “Voice” is a racist, divisive and apartheid like proposal which is contrary to the egalitarian spirit of Australia. It will also be costly in many ways and have no greater prospects of success than all that has been tried before.
    I urge Quadrant readers to continually put this truth to all of their contacts and to ask that that message be passed on.


    Genesis 11:4 (ESV) : “Then they said, “Come, let us build ourselves a city and a tower with its top in the heavens, and let us make a name for ourselves, lest we be dispersed over the face of the whole earth.”
    “Let us make a name for ourselves”…. “Let us make a Voice for ourselves” A classic example, both ancient and new, of hubris. Those builders of the Tower of Babel were confounded in their aims and so will the builders of The Voice. The ostensible benefits, to all Australians, from The Voice will come to nothing due to the hubris and greed of those crafting the change to our Constitution. They will decamp, legerdemain style, laden with the executive perks of yet another layer of bureaucracy.

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