Tuesday 25 January 2011

The Dictatorship of Reasonableness

Here at this blog, we don’t often stray into non-liturgical matters.

But we had cause to reflect recently on the stated policies and ideals of the Australian Greens.

Comparing the language of "What do the Greens stand for?" below, with the reality of how this translates to policy initiatives of some of the Greens' people (and others of like mind), we are struck (yet again) by the Dictatorship of Reasonableness. The words generally sound so, well, reasonable. How could you not agree? And if you don’t, something is wrong with you. At which point you should be prepared to be subject to the time honoured technique of the illberal liberal: your arguments will be spun and you be labelled and called names to be discredited as, well, take your pick.

But, de-spining the spin, of course, and one sees what some of these policies really are and would be if they see the light of day: an attempt to legislate the “values system” (i.e. religion) and “moral” dictates of the religion of radical secularism and/or atheism (including its attack on the sanctity of human life) into the statute books of this country, where failure to comply would be punished by the State.
So much for The Greens opposing “discrimination in all forms, whether it be based on religion, race, age, political affiliation or sexual identity...[and not supporting] vilification of any kind.”

Taken from the Member for Melbourne’s website: http://adam-bandt.greensmps.org.au/fact-checker

What do the Greens stand for?

We strive to work collaboratively and respectfully with those who care and are struggling with disadvantage, inequality and despair … whether it is in Aboriginal communities, shelters for the homeless or refugee camps.

We believe that protecting our planet for future generations is fundamental to a values system that looks beyond the individual and the present … to imagine and bring into being a healthy, safe and just future for all, in which the common wealth is distributed for the common good.

This is also reflected in our policies on climate change … which include reducing greenhouse gas emissions, increasing the use of renewable energy sources and ensuring that every Australian household has solar hot water and insulation.

The Greens oppose discrimination in all forms, whether it be based on religion, race, age, political affiliation or sexual identity. We do not support vilification of any kind.

We stand up for the principles of honesty, accountability and inclusion in government and we regard all issues and legislation as having a moral and ethical dimension.

We believe access to quality health care is a basic human right. An effective health system must be based on primary health care and preventive health care, such as health promotion, disease prevention and early intervention, in order to reduce avoidable admissions and pressure on hospitals.

We firmly believe that all Australians have a right to independence, self-determination and choice in their lives and that people who experience disability, and their families and carers, should have the opportunity to actively participate in policy development, in service planning and delivery.

The Australian Greens have a vision of a smart and caring society which is committed to the long-term well-being of all its citizens and works to build a brighter future. We see nurturing and educating our children as a critical means of ensuring the future well-being of our society and our environment.

We believe in equal rights for all human beings. Nowhere is this more critical than in education. A sound, comprehensive, well-funded education will help present and future generations thrive and overcome countless hardships.

However, our responsibilities to human rights do not end at Australia’s borders. We live in a wealthy, prosperous country, and our humanistic responsibilities extend to people of all nations.

We also stand up for the right of the community to participate in making the decisions that impact upon their lives … and support an independent and sustainable community sector that both delivers services to those in need and speaks up loudly, without fear or favour, on their behalf.