As Cats know I think Australian elites treat the Constitution with contempt – a set of guidelines, as opposed to absolute prohibitions on behaviour.
So in The Australian this morning we see this:
The difficulty with section 92 is that it cannot be read literally. Trade and movement between the states can never be “absolutely free”. Necessity dictates some restrictions.
Dangerous goods and illegal drugs need to be banned, state and federal taxes need to be paid to support government and communities need to be protected from injury. If this were not the case, section 92 would dictate that violent pornography and apples infected with fruit fly could be sent between states without restriction.
This is in relation to section 92 of the Constitution – the interstate commerce clause. Now I don’t want to be unsympathetic to the problems of violent pornography and fruit flies but allowing them to cross a state border is precisely what the Constitution mandates. If the authorities want to tackle issues such as violent pornography and fruit fly they have to come up with a solution that does not violate the Constitution and not pull some story out of their backsides that somehow the Constitution does not really apply or mean what it says.