Bill Shorten ABC

Once again, Crikey readers were quick to man the battlements when a new stage of the ABC war was signaled, as reported by Bernard Keane. Readers were a little more divided on Guy Rundle’s examination of Senator David Leyonhjelm’s particular brand of libertarianism in his battle against Sarah Hanson-Young, which became a hot-spot for debate on either side of the issue.


On the new offensive against the ABC

Klewso writes: What’s left for Turnbull to shed of his former self ? He had people fooled for so long into thinking he was a “different kind of politician” with the nation’s interests at heart.

TheRabidHamster writes: The ALP will need to form a special department solely focused on the clearing out the IPA/Murdoch detritus from the public service. There are still Howard-era appointees that Rudd and Gillard were too magnanimous to dump. Get rid of the lot of them.

Vasco writes: Maybe we need to start crowdfunding the national broadcaster, take it into public hands and run it for the people. That’s a bit, you know, socialistic, but why should all the neocons and their fellow travelers have all the fun?

Bref writes: The fact that Labor hasn’t come out in solid support for the ABC has me worried. As with so many issues (immigration, NBN, social services, ABC, housing, cost of living) where they should be on a winner, they’ve been silent or not loud or articulate enough. Its time for Shorten to stop sounding like some docile preacher behind a pulpit and show some guts and promote progressive policies. For God’s sake, Shorten, this should be a walk in the park!


On David Leyonhjelm’s lowering of libertarianism

Hunt, Ian writes: What is a libertarian? Some believe the fairy story that Enlightenment economist Adam Smith’s invisible hand is all you need for an ongoing society. Some want a so-called “minimal state”, but can’t agree on what it might do. Some want a state that will only act when everyone agrees the state should act. Some want a state that will not violate anyone’s rights but can’t agree on what this means.

Leyonhjelm is probably just a naughty little boy, who wants to get away with as much as he can while preserving the status quo. This might be a form of libertarian belief but I think he just aspires to being a wanton. Can’t we just forget him and hope that he goes down the gurgler at the next election?

Dog’s Breakfast writes: I’d hope a libertarian might be interested in issues of personal liberty, in which case the criminalisation of drug-taking would be top of the agenda, along with making sure that the government wasn’t spying on your every movement and/or internet chat, and being against the unemployed being burdened with ridiculous requirements to apply for 700 jobs a week. I don’t see any of that in Leyonhjelm.

Klewso writes: An idea cannot be responsible for the people that hold it.

Jack Robertson writes: Lleyonhjelm will relish the prospect of making a tortuous, semantic argument about the impossibility of feeling “slut shamed” if you don’t think female sexual agency is any grounds for feeling ashamed. That he’s a hypocrite and selective libertarian, doesn’t detract from what is a reasonably problematic point for Sarah Hanson Young’s case: to sue him for bringing her reputation into disrepute on the grounds of promiscuity, she’ll need to argue a retrograde, anti-feminist position.


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