Jul 29, 2014

Rundle: Tim Wilson’s all-singing, all-dancing free speech freedom jamboree

The Australian Human Rights Commission is hosting a conference on freedom, but is it just another case of choosing talk over action?

Guy Rundle — Correspondent-at-large

Guy Rundle


The Abbott government’s culture war is on the road, with the announcement of a symposium on “free speech” by new freedom commissioner Tim Wilson. The Free Speech 2014 symposium will take place on August 7 in Sydney. The conference strap line is stirring enough — “free speech is fundamental to a free and democratic society. But … is it adequately protected and promoted in Australia?” The one-day symposium will contribute to a “road map” for the future of free speech in Australia.


Leave a comment

28 thoughts on “Rundle: Tim Wilson’s all-singing, all-dancing free speech freedom jamboree

  1. Steven Grant Haby


    A quick glance at the program idicates as you state a real mish-mash of individuals pushing specific agendas. Are you planning to attend? I’ll even cough up the $330 for you as I am not able to go (as much as I would like to).

    Should be a very ‘interesting’ day


  2. Yclept

    Surely you’re not suggesting that any lefties be allowed to talk. They’re just too biased. You should know that, just look at that horrible communist ABC!

    Only these true libertarians of the right can save Australia…

  3. paddy

    [It’s a subtly slanted conference]
    It’ looks about as subtle as a bulldozer and the “slant” is closer to a ski jump ramp than a level playing field.
    Hell, it looks even worse than your common or garden #qanda .

    @$165 a seat for a pensioner, I’m afraid I’ll be eating stale crusts and guzzling cheap plonk, instead of swapping bon mots with the glitterati.

    Still, I suppose the twitter feed should be a hoot.

    Re: SGH’s kind offer. Surely Crikey could buy you a discounted ticket and a bus fare to Sydney Guy?

    For that, I might even be tempted to watch the circus online.

  4. klewso

    Free speech is great – as long as you or one of your media mogul sponsors hold the megaphone.

  5. zut alors

    The prospect of Tim Wilson speaking twice in a single day has me reeling for the smelling salts.

    I’d like to hear a quality debate on why whistleblowers aren’t under the protective umbrella of free speech. The hapless Allan Kessing springs to mind – so much for free speech in our great democracy.

  6. klewso

    … I’ve always wanted to see “a rat with a gold tooth”, haven’t so far – ’til then Wilson will do?

  7. Ben heslop

    Tim Wilson doesn’t like free speech when it comes to the IPA revealing its sponsors.

  8. Alex

    I strongly suspect Tim Wilson’s mission is to protect THE right rather than rights of a human kind.

  9. fractious

    Oh my, Brandis to open, followed by several (indigestible) courses of IPA/ CIS/ Quadrant ideology, with a couple of sacrificial “moderates” thrown in like Christians in a Roman arena full of lions. What a knees-up that’ll be – regrettably I’ll be wasting my $330 on such Marxist trivia as food, bills and so on.

    “the symposium is being used to give academic gloss to a whole series of things the government wants to do anyway”

    And, I daresay, the appearance of “a frank and open public debate that seeks the views of the ordinary person” or some such twaddle. If they did one of those entry polls like Q&A do, I wonder what the audience’s political persuasion might look like…

  10. dazza

    That great promoter of free speech, the OZ, keeps offending people by not publishing comments that don’t agree with their world view.

Share this article with a friend

Just fill out the fields below and we'll send your friend a link to this article along with a message from you.

Your details

Your friend's details