Who governs Australia?

Here is Morgan Begg in The Australian:

Bureaucrats are using Australia’s foreign-influence laws to run a covert political operation out of the Attorney-General’s Department to silence Australians because of their political beliefs, all under the nose of the Coalition government.

Here is Kristina Keneally:

Opposition home affairs spokeswoman Kristina Keneally, who was the subject of “send her back” chants at the CPAC conference, earlier said the laws were being implemented as the government had intended. “The FITS law must be applied equally. It can’t exempt groups just because you like them. It ­applies to all potential foreign ­interference, full stop,” she tweeted.

Senator Keneally said the “alt-right” American lobby group clearly fell within the legislation.

If Americans constitute “foreign influence” in Australia what are we to make of the US military base in Darwin?

Here is the Coalition (supposed) government’s pathetic excuse:

Mr Porter earlier reported to the Senate that the team implementing the scheme did not ­employ anyone specialising in a language other than English, and there were no plans to hire ­foreign-language experts. 

So let’s harass Americans and Australians under the foreign influence – they almost speak English.

So what is Christian Porter going to do?

He said he would discuss the scheme with department secretary Chris Moraitis to ensure it “has the right personnel and skills to make smarter and more effective decisions”.

Pathetic.  The bureaucrats are following somebodies instructions but not the elected government of the day.

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65 Responses to Who governs Australia?

  1. feelthebern

    If Americans constitute “foreign influence” in Australia what are we to make of the US military base in Darwin?

    Excellent point.

  2. I am reminded of the Security Consultant who was quoted yesterday in the Open Forums:

    “These people are playing with matches… I don’t think they understand the scope and scale of the wildfire they are flirting with. ”

  3. stackja

    Bureaucrats are supposed to be servants. Government should govern.

  4. Tintarella di Luna

    Opposition home affairs spokeswoman Kristina Keneally, who was the subject of “send her back” chants at the CPAC conference, earlier said the laws were being implemented as the government had intended. “The FITS law must be applied equally. It can’t exempt groups just because you like them. It ­applies to all potential foreign ­interference, full stop,” she tweeted.

    Says she with an American accent, she who belongs to a party mired in scandal after scandal of $100,000 in an Aldi bag. And Sami Dastyari, and Paul Keating and the late Bob Hawke and Bill Shorten one of GetUp’s founders here in Australia.

  5. Karabar

    What a free market does not thrive on is governmental force. Force is the antithesis of freedom, and the more force, the less the freedom, until, eventually, the free market collapses under the weight of governmental interference.
    Since political correctness arrived on the scene, it has degraded the free market, but it should not be mis-defined as force. It has functioned through coercion. Coercion is not force, but it’s often a precursor of force.

  6. Bruce of Newcastle

    Between s44 and this foreign influence legislation it’s a wonder that Ms Keneally is still in Parliament. Maybe the IPA could send her a MAGA cap and a one way ticket to Albuquerque.

  7. A Lurker

    Amazing how such obvious examples of Foreign Influence are ignored in favour of monstering Conservatives and Libertarians with lawfare.

    “The Foreign Influence Transparency Scheme was created in December last year. It was designed to create a publicly accessible register detailing all persons or organizations operating in Australia that act on behalf of a foreign government, a foreign political organization, or an organization related to a foreign government entity. However, none of the 14 Confucius Institutes currently operating in Australia submitted themselves to the register. Meanwhile, entities such as the United States Study Center, funded by the U.S Department of State and operating out of the University of Sydney, are on the register. With the Confucius Institutes an arm of China’s Ministry of Education, their absence is conspicuous.”

    “WikiLeaks has revealed secret Saudi Arabian influence in Arabic media and Islamic religious groups in Australia as well as covert monitoring of Saudi students studying at Australian universities.

    More than 61,000 leaked Saudi diplomatic documents have been released by WikiLeaks in what the international transparency group says will be the first instalment of the publication of more than half a million secret papers in batches over coming weeks.”

    “The network of billionaire lobbyist George Soros, who “pressures governments to adopt high immigration targets and porous border policies” through his Open Society Foundations, has influence in Australia though GetUp!, as Jennifer Oriel wrote Monday for The Australian.”

  8. Old School Conservative

    Morrison’s silence denotes acceptance of this targeting of conservatives.

  9. Well said Tinta.

    This story just depresses me….it is yet another prime example of how utterly feeble, cretinous and pathetic the LNP and conservatives in general are in this country are when dealing with the left and their smears….and particularly when dealing with uber skank Keneally. Keneally wouldn’t last five seconds under a Trump. She parrots on precisely because she knows she can get away with it. Where are the attack dogs on the right going head to head with Keneally? Given the skank’s unsavoury history and unsavory connections….if we lived in a better world the skank should and would be too scared to open her mouth.

  10. C. Paul Barreira

    The amusing thing is that the bureaucrats are following an American playbook. For a long time now, nothing original happens in Oz, all is copied. I used not to like the term “deep state”, but what else comes near to describing the abuse of power that now characterises Australian government?

  11. Mark M

    They were hiding in plain sight the whole time …

    ”The emerging world order will increasingly be shaped by might, rather than law”.

    The EU needs to be a power project
    https://www.ft.com/content/ff92106c-e8e0-11e9-85f4-d00e5018f061?segmentID=174b076a-8f00-ca9e-9e21-65b127e0d275

  12. stackja

    Today, it seems, few remember the 1940s ALP was influenced by foreigners.

  13. A Lurker

    Amazing how such obvious examples of Foreign Influence are ignored in favour of monstering Conservatives and Libertarians with lawfare.

    —————-

    “The Foreign Influence Transparency Scheme was created in December last year. It was designed to create a publicly accessible register detailing all persons or organizations operating in Australia that act on behalf of a foreign government, a foreign political organization, or an organization related to a foreign government entity. However none of the 14 Confucius Institutes currently operating in Australia submitted themselves to the register. Meanwhile, entities such as the United States Study Center, funded by the U.S Department of State and operating out of the University of Sydney, are on the register. With the Confucius Institutes an arm of China’s Ministry of Education, their absence is conspicuous.”

    https://thediplomat.com/…/should-australia-be-worried-abou…/

    “WikiLeaks has revealed secret Saudi Arabian influence in Arabic media and Islamic religious groups in Australia as well as covert monitoring of Saudi students studying at Australian universities. More than 61,000 leaked Saudi diplomatic documents have been released by WikiLeaks in what the international transparency group says will be the first instalment of the publication of more than half a million secret papers in batches over coming weeks.”

    https://www.smh.com.au/…/wikileaks-saudi-cables-reveal-secr…

    “The network of billionaire lobbyist George Soros, who “pressures governments to adopt high immigration targets and porous border policies” through his Open Society Foundations, has influence in Australia though GetUp!, as Jennifer Oriel wrote Monday for The Australian.”

    https://www.newsmax.com/…/Soros-Austr…/2016/08/21/id/744504/

    p.s. Apologies if this is a double post, the first attempt vanished into the aether.

  14. And as I wrote in a comment under Morgan Begg’s piece in today’s Oz..

    “First they came for Tony Abbott…for speaking at the conference.

    Next they came for Andrew Cooper…for organising the conference.

    Finally they came for me…for attending the conference.”

  15. Des Deskperson

    As I said on the other thread:

    this scheme may well be poorly drafted and heavy handed with unforeseen consequences;

    its implementation and enforcement processes may well give bureaucrats too much discretionary power;

    It may well have been managed rigidly and unintelligently so far.

    There is no evidence of ‘lefty’ bureaucrats using it to undermine the government of the day. Reportedly 500 individuals and organisation have been ‘asked’ to consider registering. Two of these are prominent conservatives. What about the other 498?

    And the military bases in Darwin are being established under formal arrangements with the US government under the umbrella of something called the ANZUS Treaty. I’m surprised that this is anyone’s view of hidden ‘foreign influence’.

  16. “Reportedly 500 individuals and organisation have been ‘asked’ to consider registering. Two of these are prominent conservatives. What about the other 498?”

    No DD…whilst the Abbott letter has been sent to others…the Andrew Cooper letter is a one off.

  17. Des Deskperson

    ‘No DD…whilst the Abbott letter has been sent to others…the Andrew Cooper letter is a one off.’

    Then why was Cooper targeted and who authorised it? I find it hard to believe that a DEP SEC in AG’s would deliberately victimise a prominent conservative without instructions from above.

    But why would the Morrison Government want to go after Cooper?

  18. Tim Neilson

    I’m surprised that this is anyone’s view of hidden ‘foreign influence’.

    Is the legislation restricted to “hidden” foreign influence?

    Was Abbott’s appearance at CPAC meant to be covert?

    Selective enforcement of sweeping legislation is the number one weapon of tyranny disguised as legalism.

  19. “Selective enforcement of sweeping legislation is the number one weapon of tyranny disguised as legalism.”

    Well said Tim…and it is being selectively enforced against Andrew Cooper…but Deskperson doesn’t seem to have a problem with that.

  20. C.L.

    Yet another example of a far left-wing idea being ratcheted into the system perpetually thanks to the Liberal Party. If this is not repealed NOW, it will be the cudgel used against non-leftists for generations. Porter is a coward on this at best and a collaborator with it at worst.

  21. Des Deskperson

    ‘I’m surprised that this is anyone’s view of hidden ‘foreign influence’.’

    Bad wording on my part. I was simply trying to point out that an official treaty between two governments is not what I expect the Scheme is intended to cover.

    ‘Well said Tim…and it is being selectively enforced against Andrew Cooper…but Deskperson doesn’t seem to have a problem with that.’

    I have a problem with the idea that this as an initiative by a cabal of ‘progressive ‘ APS employees trying to undermine the government.

    If the DEP SEC went after Cooper on her own initiative, then, apart from the, prima facie, unfair victimisation, she has been extremely stupid and has embarrassed the Government – the worst thing an APS employee can do short of a criminal offence.

    If she was acting on instructions, then why has the Morrison Government got it in for Cooper.

  22. Arky

    Coercion is not force,

    ..
    It kind of is. When are you libertarian idiots going to stop making excuses for corporations? Is it not enough for you that they now openly side with every enemy of our society, both internal and external? What does it take to wake you up?

    coercion
    /kəʊˈəːʃ(ə)n/
    noun
    the action or practice of persuading someone to do something by using force or threats.

  23. Arky

    Ok.
    Sorry for the “idiot” thing.
    Delete that.

  24. Dr Fred Lenin

    The liberals are a mid left wing of the globalist Uniparty The albanians mob are the fsr left wing ,and the gangrenes are the cpommunist wing . Soros probably owns many of their leaders ,just as he owns the remainers in the UK and hundreds of the european parliament .
    Trump a nd Farage are his mortal enemies ,we unfortunately have no one like them ,or even close to their way of thinking ,the defeat of sorosism should be the goal of every lover of freedom ,and the repeal of all globalist Sorosist laws our first aim .
    Sorosism is the new marxist fascism .

  25. A Lurker

    If she was acting on instructions, then why has the Morrison Government got it in for Cooper.

    Elimination of any kind of political competition?
    The imprisonment of Pauline Hanson likewise springs to mind.

    However, I don’t think this was under Morrison Government instructions, but rather Marxist termite(s) within the APS taking the opportunity to use lawfare to bully a couple of ideological enemies.

  26. Biota

    Odd that foreign interest/agency is being targeted when globalism/open borders is the flavour of the times. Is it now nationalism? So happy Australia Day from now on?

  27. “I have a problem with the idea that this as an initiative by a cabal of ‘progressive ‘ APS employees trying to undermine the government.” I don’t have a problem with the idea……and in fact it doesn’t surprise me AT ALL that there is a “cabal of progressives in the APS”.

    If the DEP SEC went after Cooper on her own initiative, then, apart from the, prima facie, unfair victimisation, she has been extremely stupid and has embarrassed the Government – the worst thing an APS employee can do short of a criminal offence.“…well that’s right…and that is probably what has happened. What will happen to DEP SEC? Probably nothing because the cretinous Libs are too wimp and spineless to do anything about it.

    If she was acting on instructions, then why has the Morrison Government got it in for Cooper.”…I don’t think that she was acting on instructions from Porter and I don’t believe that the Morrison government has it in for Cooper….however I do believe that the head honchos in the APS have it in for Cooper…along with various conservatives, libertarians and anyone else who doesn’t subscribe to the “progressive worldview”.

    Has Paul Keating received a similar letter to the one that Abbott received?
    Has Bob Carr…aka human garbage…received a similar letter to the one that Abbott received?
    Has Kevin Rudd received a similar letter to the one that Abbott received?
    Has Julia Gillard received a similar letter to the one that Abbott received?
    Has Paul Oosting a GetUp received a similar letter to the one that Andrew Cooper received?

  28. Dr Fred Lenin

    Yes Lurker , I remember when Howards hit man Abbot ,fitted Hansen up and railroaded her into prison ,isnt it ironic he is now the target for another fit up by his old parties new left wing leader Morrison the puppet of the leftwing Turnbull ,its Karma mate ,pure Karma . Malcolms revenge for getting him the dflick for incopetence as opposition leader .

  29. John Constantine

    Their Julia Romanov-gillard now working for an American left wing lobby group as a reward for services during her despotic rule.

    Keating in the employ of the chicoms.

    Hawke died worth tens of millions from providing influence to overseas interests.

  30. Roger

    The ALP interfered in the American 2016 election by sending and funding interns to work on Hillary’s campaign.

    Why doesn’t Morrison or Christian Porter take the opportunity to point out their hypocrisy?

    And no Mandarin speakers…really?

  31. Pyrmonter

    The law says what it says. If it treats Americans (or Brits. Or New Zealanders) as ‘foreign’, so be it. If it is a bad law, it should be repealed.

    Relying on executive intervention or the actions of a minister responsible to the House to selectively enforce it is a mug’s game: whatever you may think of Porter (somewhat tentatively, I think he has the right instincts) he will not be A-G forever. If this is a bad law in his hands, how will it be in the hands of a Roxon or Murphy? Or one of the Minister for Home Affairs’ mates from Queensland?

  32. Ceres

    How about one of these letters to Daniel Andrews with his Belt and Road ‘initiative’ with China?

  33. Behind Enemy Lines

    Des Deskperson
    #3202210, posted on November 5, 2019 at 12:32 pm
    I have a problem with the idea that this as an initiative by a cabal of ‘progressive ‘ APS employees trying to undermine the government.

    If the DEP SEC went after Cooper on her own initiative, then, apart from the, prima facie, unfair victimisation, she has been extremely stupid and has embarrassed the Government – the worst thing an APS employee can do short of a criminal offence.

    If she was acting on instructions, then why has the Morrison Government got it in for Cooper

    DD is raising good points and asking smart questions. I’m still waiting for the facts to come out but am assuming one of three things happened, in this order of likelihood:

    1). The Minister’s advisor(s) signed off on this, either to screw their right-wing competition or through imbecility, or perhaps both

    2). The FAS / DepSec acted without consulting the Minister’s office, because they’re imbeciles

    3). The FAS / DepSec are (like 90% of their colleagues) part of the ALP / Green network, and were willing to blow up their careers in a way that would make them look like idiots for . . . some unfathomable reason

    There are thousands of ways that the cabal of ‘progressive’ APS employees undermine a Coalition government and conservative groups, but this particular way was almost inevitably going to blow up.

    And remember, to get to FAS level you have to crawl up miles of politician’s ****es. These people are unnaturally sensitive to their masters’ desires. Anyone prone to own-goals like this generally gets filtered out far below FAS / DepSec level.

    So I’m not buying the APS conspiracy angle.

    My money’s on the Minister’s office. I’m waiting for a shamefaced confession or a leak from the APS.

  34. Mother Lode

    And no Mandarin speakers…really?

    The Chinese government has promised to provide some.

    They really are the most obliging people.

  35. Percy Popinjay

    Porter earlier reported to the Senate that the team implementing the scheme did not ­employ anyone specialising in a language other than English

    The team only “employs” carbon based lifeforms proficient in bureaucratese, which should not be confused with anything even remotely resembling English.

  36. Karabar:

    Coercion is not force, but it’s often a precursor of force.

    That is a dismaying display of Leftist Language Elasticity.

  37. jupes

    1). The Minister’s advisor(s) signed off on this, either to screw their right-wing competition or through imbecility, or perhaps both

    2). The FAS / DepSec acted without consulting the Minister’s office, because they’re imbeciles

    3). The FAS / DepSec are (like 90% of their colleagues) part of the ALP / Green network, and were willing to blow up their careers in a way that would make them look like idiots for . . . some unfathomable reason

    I reckon it was option two (with caveats).

    2) a. The DepSec is not an imbecile.
    2) b. She correctly analysed the legislation as deeply flawed and an opportunity to attack the right.
    2) c. After 12 months giving him the pathetic excuse that she can’t go after the Chicoms because there are only English speackers in the department, she correctly picked Porter as a gutless turd who won’t sack her even if he embarrasses her.

  38. jupes

    That should read: … even if she embarrasses him.

  39. Behind Enemy Lines

    Jupes, this issue isn’t tasty enough, and the potential pay-off isn’t valuable enough, for a FAS or DepSec to risk losing a promotion or being forced into early retirement over it. If they reckoned they could jail Abbot — well, sure, that’s different. There are countless senior public servants who’d have a swing at it, take their victory lap and ‘retire’ to a cushy ALP sinecure. But that was never going to happen here. Instead, the only conceivable result would be to enrage the one chap who can sack them while simultaneously giving him grounds to do so. Or send them to the figurative mail room. Senior public servants don’t surrender political influence that easily.

    Watch and see – this one has ‘ministerial advisor’ written all over it.

  40. Des Deskperson

    ‘2) a. The DepSec is not an imbecile.
    2) b. She correctly analysed the legislation as deeply flawed and an opportunity to attack the right.’

    In which case, why did she single out an activist like Cooper, who was almost certain to react loudly and publicly, embarrassing the government and highlighting dangerous flaws in the scheme??

    For the reasons set out very logically and thoroughly by Behind Enemy Lines above, I don’t believe for a second that such a politically fraught action would have taken place without the agreement of the Minister or his office.

    The key question remains: why Cooper??

  41. jupes

    Watch and see – this one has ‘ministerial advisor’ written all over it.

    Well I won’t hold my breath …

    If Porter was going to do something, he should have done it by now. His next step will be ” I can’t comment while the due process is being conducted.” My advice to Cooper is to lawyer up.

    Gutless.

  42. Zatara

    Remind me, what party was it that got busted infiltrating operatives into the US to illegally work on Bernie’s campaign in 2016?

    Oh yeah, Labor.

    Bernie got fined $15,000 or so but was any action taken against them or the party in Australia?

  43. jupes

    In which case, why did she single out an activist like Cooper, who was almost certain to react loudly and publicly, embarrassing the government and highlighting dangerous flaws in the scheme??

    As his subsequent inaction has shown, she has correctly gauged his character and is not scared of the gutless turd.

    Why Cooper? Can’t have any more of those CPAC hate-fests in Australia can we?

  44. jupes

    The gutless turd being Porter of course.

  45. Percy Popinjay

    Bernie got fined $15,000 or so but was any action taken against them or the party in Australia?

    Incorrect – the ALP copped the fine.

    Trigger warning: Grauniad link.

  46. Behind Enemy Lines

    Des Deskperson
    #3202423, posted on November 5, 2019 at 4:36 pm
    The key question remains: why Cooper??

    jupes
    #3202431, posted on November 5, 2019 at 4:45 pm
    Why Cooper? Can’t have any more of those CPAC hate-fests in Australia can we?

    I think Jupes is on the money here. The threat to the LibLab mono-party is on the right, not on the left. So CPAC is potentially an enemy to everyone involved in the decision.

    I am also guessing that the people behind this knew that Cooper would complain. However, his complaint is a great way to send a very clear warning to everyone else on this side of politics. After all, the process is the punishment.

  47. Boambee John

    Doomlord

    Time to update your photo of KKKeneally, she no longer has the “Bambi” look.

  48. cohenite

    Time to update your photo of KKKeneally, she no longer has the “Bambi” look.

    Nobody’s girl has always been a kunt.

  49. Des Deskperson

    ‘I am also guessing that the people behind this knew that Cooper would complain. ‘

    Unless all players were really stupid, they must have been aware of this and presumably factored it in.

    All the more reason to believe that was politically sanctioned.

  50. Zatara

    Thanks for clearing that up Percy. I honestly couldn’t recall.

    But isn’t it interesting that a party who three years ago got caught interfering in a foreign election is suddenly concerned about somebody else doing it to them? The word ‘projection’ comes to mind yet again when discussing accusations from the left.

    You have to wonder if this FITS law would even exist if Project Veritas hadn’t exposed them red-handed. Or had Hillary won.

  51. Chidgley was a lunatic feminist as a student at ANU.

    Keneally is a keen hatchet carrying man hater as well.

    Oh to be a fly on the wall.

  52. cohenite

    Chidgley was a lunatic feminist as a student at ANU.

    Well, she’s a kunt too.

  53. Twostix

    What sort of foreigner moves to a country and immediately decides they should run for parliament and rule over the people who live there?

    Suspicious people, that’s who.

  54. Twostix

    I would expect this program to ask any foreign born person aspiring to join a political party in this country: why?

  55. Entropy

    I believe Chidgley worked for Mick Trumble at one stage.

  56. Squirrel

    The handling of this by a Minister who is seen by some (including himself, presumably) as foreman material will be interesting – it’s the sort of thing which colleagues and rivals tend to remember, and be reminded of if they happen to forget.

  57. Entropy
    #3202509, posted on November 5, 2019 at 6:36 pm

    I believe Chidgley worked for Mick Trumble at one stage.

    Ah yes the PM who had the new Senate laws that passed the Senate with the support of the lunatic, at one time KGB funded Australian Greens.

  58. candy

    I think 99.9% the PMs office and the AG knew how it was unfolding and probably found it convenient to get some brownie points for it from the leftish mates. You know, to them it’s not a big deal but to Andrew Cooper he is probably figuring legal action and Tony Abbott is highly offended as a former PM, as would be natural to feel.
    They structured the legislation, after all. If the AG doesn’t know what’s happening good grief, what a pickle we are in.

    There is always the possibility that the Dept. Secretary was incompetent but at that level of office it would seem almost like mental retardation on her part to stuff something up in this manner. But she will remain in her job – because of being a feminist. Way more likely it is malicious.

  59. Cassie of Sydney

    “Entropy
    #3202509, posted on November 5, 2019 at 6:36 pm
    I believe Chidgley worked for Mick Trumble at one stage.”

    What a surprise…NOT. The Turd planted booby traps everywhere.

  60. Entropy

    Yes mick Trumble the potentially great PM.

  61. candy

    Chidgley was a lunatic feminist as a student at ANU.

    Probably of a grouping of like minded ladies like J. Gillard, the Milligan woman, Keneally, T. Plibersek, and other high fliers, who have this hate of conservative men, see misogyny in everything and want revenge as they actually see their lives ruined by misogyny.
    It does seem malicious, to my mind.

  62. Boambee John

    Frank Walker from National Tiles
    #3202466, posted on November 5, 2019 at 5:42 pm
    Chidgley was a lunatic feminist as a student at ANU.

    The bolded statement is tautological. You need only say “feminist”.

    It is the same with the expression “raving greenie”, only “greenie” need be used.

  63. procrustes

    It is most likely some version of Behind Enemy Lines 2 – they are imbeciles

  64. Elderly White Man From Skipton

    Clearly we need a law that only targets Chinese

  65. Old School Conservative

    Wednesday 6th and still nothing from Morrison.
    He’s in on it.

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