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The Indigenous Voice to Parliament ? The No Case | Peter O'Brien

The Indigenous Voice to Parliament ? The No Case | Peter O'Brien

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The Indigenous Voice to Parliament ?

The No Case by Peter O'Brien 

Foreword by David Flint


ISBN: 9781922815477

Paperback, 124 pages


On becoming Prime Minister in May 2023, Anthony Albanese’s very first commitment was that he would implement the Uluru Statement from the Heart in full.  That statement encompasses a Voice to Parliament and Government, truth telling, treaty and some form of Aboriginal sovereignty or self-government.  The Voice is the first and enabling step to these other demands. 

It is not, as Albanese claims, a modest change and ‘just good manners’.  If this referendum succeeds, it will be the most significant change the Constitution has ever undergone and it will be a major concession to Aborigines.  It will entrench in the Constitution an eighth political entity alongside the Commonwealth and the States.  But membership of this polity will be open only to members of one particular race.  And it will not be content with merely issuing advice.  It will, sooner rather than later, demand, and exercise, power in its own right.  It will effectively, become a separate government for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people. 

This booklet will explain how that might come about.

This proposal conflates two issues – advice to Parliament, and Constitutional recognition of Aboriginal people.  Much of the support for the latter aspect is based on a genuine and understandable sympathy for the history and plight of Aboriginal people.  It is seen by many as long overdue recompense for wrongs past and present.  But much of this sympathy is built on exaggerated claims and historical myths. This booklet will also examine the issue of Constitutional recognition.  It will argue that if this is to happen, it should not be by means of the Voice.

Peter O’Brien, a retired army officer, is a frequent contributor to Quadrant and Spectator magazines.  He is also the author of Bitter Harvest – the illusion of Aboriginal agriculture in Bruce Pascoe’s Dark Emu and Villain or Victim – a defence of Sir John Kerr and the Reserve Powers.

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