Federal

Mar 20, 2014

‘Bonfire of the regulations’ has a decidedly musty smell

"Repeal day" mainly consists of removing ancient legislative deadwood and trivial changes to current law. And in some areas, governments only ever regulate, never deregulate.

Bernard Keane — Politics editor

Bernard Keane

Politics editor

There’s no doubting the ruthlessness with which the Abbott government yesterday went about slashing at the dense foliage of regulation that has trapped the Australian economy in a gloomy thicket of undergrowth and low productivity. Like a logger with a chainsaw heading into forest too long locked up by mad greenies, it has started felling the tall timber of regulatory tyranny.

So, under the Amending Acts 1901 to 1969 Repeal Bill 2014 the lights have been turned off for the Lighthouses Acts — all six of them, starting from 1916. It’s last drinks for the Distillation Acts — all 11 of them. Time’s been called on the nine Spirits Acts, right back to 1915. There’s no more room for the 25 War Services Homes Acts after the Great War and World War II (and, sadly, the War Services Estate Acts as the period after the relevant conflict lengthens). The Defence Act 1911 — one of 32 Defence Acts being repealed — which regulates how long a senior cadet drills for, is now being drummed out.

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2 comments

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2 thoughts on “‘Bonfire of the regulations’ has a decidedly musty smell

  1. AR

    As the letters suggest,the job description MPs are,first & foremost, to be our, personal, representative and 2nd, far & away one would like to think, a legislator.
    Over 70% are lawyers. They are going to make laws, else the world ceases to have meaning.

  2. Brendan Jones

    What about repealing the Defence Trade Controls Act?

    That’s the ultimate red tape. A 380 page legal document which academics and high-tech businesses are expected to comply with. Make a mistake; go to prison for 10 years, and and forfeit of your research to the Commonwealth. http://victimsofdsto.com/dtca

    In opposition David Johnston called the legislation a “disgraceful” (and Rob Oakeshott called it “dangerous”), yet the public service are currently lording it over academics like little tin gods. If the Abbott government really is anti-red tape, why have they left this in place? Do they hate science? or freedom? or both?

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