Shorten’s republic ploy another attack on our way of life

Shorten’s republic ploy another attack on our way of life, by Tony Abbott. Bill Shorten promises to hold a plebiscite on a republic in the first term of a Labor government.

This would cost about $150 million — the same amount he refuses to spend on giving the public a say on same-sex marriage. And a yes vote wouldn’t settle the big question: whether a president should be directly elected by the people or chosen by the government and rubber-stamped by parliament.

This attack on the monarchy is just the latest instalment in the green-left’s war on our way of life that Shorten Labor has largely made its own: there’s same-sex marriage, which, after this term of parliament, every Labor MP will be bound to support; there’s the assault on Christianity (such as strictures against scripture classes) that’s most noticeable in Labor states; there’s the attack on the traditional family epitomised by the social engineering, gender fluidity Safe Schools program that Victorian Labor is making compulsory; and there’s the envy-exploiting campaign against “inequality” by planning to impose even higher taxes on our most productive people. Each of these is a cynical attempt to exploit grievances for votes in ways that will divide and diminish our country.

Then there’s the revival of the fatuous notion that we can’t truly be Australian without a “resident for president”. This idea that the Anzacs were culturally compromised or that our Olympic athletes have been confused about which country they were representing because of the crown doesn’t stand up to scrutiny but it’s implicit in the republican argument. …

No one with our country’s best interests at heart could answer the question “Should we become a republic?” without knowing what sort of a republic it would be. When a republic was last put to a vote, in 1999, some republicans rejected the proposed model because it didn’t give the people a vote. Shorten is hoping to maximise support without making the hard choices that becoming a republic would involve. It’s dishonest because, apart from absolutists on both sides, the most common response to Shorten’s question would be: “It depends.”

A republic with the head of state elected by the people could give us a celebrity president who would soon be competing with the prime minister. Having a head of state with the legitimacy of direct election would change the nature of the office. …

Why would an exemplary Australian of proven standing submit to the indignities of a political contest, other than to have a significant say in running the country?

I fear a republic would result in an appointed president, appointed by the elite from the institutions they control. Always a PC president.

Andrew adds:

We don’t need a President Triggs, Gillard, Flannery, or even Ablett (or for that matter Abbott – that will mean war). And we will be a global laughing stock when it turns out that President Wong is actually a dual citizen and ineligible — and you know it’s only a matter of time statistically before we stuff up one of those.

If this is a thing again, I’ve come up with the best republican model of all. Vest the powers of the Crown ex officio in the Chief Justice of the High Court (if vacant, the Acting Head of State is the Acting Chief Justice or most senior Justice if none exists). He will open Parliament, swear in Ministers, and wield the reserve powers in the event of a constitutional crisis.