With that old crook Sir Joh barely cold in the grave, his successor Peter Beattie is already channelling his spirit. Last week restrictions to Freedom of Information legislation – only introduced in Queensland 13 years ago – were rammed through the state’s single house parliament by Beattie’s arrogant government. Attorney-General Rod Welford says the changes ensure Queensland will maintain a modern framework for accountability in government.

These changes provide Queensland with a “modern, responsive FOI regime, promote improvements in the quality of government decision-making and ensure greater consistency in the way the Act is applied,” according to his media release.

Oddly enough, the Queensland opposition has been fighting to get documents on Welford himself using – you guessed it – FOI. The FOI commissioner gave advice that the documents should be released. It hasn’t happened. Queensland’s media gets heavied enough by the Beattie government. It hasn’t had much to say on the FOI laws. Now, self censorship is being replaced by censorship proper.