[Linux-aus] Leon's message relating to the FTA

Bret Busby bret at busby.net
Fri Aug 27 15:33:01 UTC 2004

I have received a message from Leon, relating to the FTA, addressed to 
Mark Latham and Stephen Conroy.

The email wasn't addressed to the Linux Australia list, so I assume that 
it was Bcc'd to the list. Whether that was intentional, is unknown.

I note that a message that I sent to the four WA ALP senators, was 
acknowledged by only one - Ruth Webber, who sent me a letter. However, I 
have not received a response to my response to that letter.

In my response to the letter from Senator Ruth Webber, I stated a few 
things; that as John Hewson had said, most Australians lack an adequate 
understanding of the proposed trade agreement and its implications, that 
Australians, as the people to be affected by the proposed trade 
agreement, have a right to be properly informed about the proposed trade 
agreement, and, that, as Australian voters are the people to be affected 
by the proposed trade agreemenmt, the decision of whether the proposed 
trade agreement would be implemented, should be decided by the 
Australian people, by referendum, so that the decsision should be made 
by the people of Australia, who should be properly informed as to the 
implications of the proposed trade agreement. I also said that it is my 
understanding that the proposed trade agreement had the potential to 
destroy the Australian IT industry, quite apart from the Australian 
sugar industry, due to the intellectual property aspects. I also said 
that the proposed trade agreement should not be referred to as a frett 
trade agreement, as it does not involve free trade, it is merely a 
trade agreement. I believe that the sugar component and the 
agriculture compionent, are just some of the aspects where it will 
clearly not involve free trade.

If we do not decide such a controversial issue, by referendum, with the 
people being properly informed, then  we are merely the subjects of a 
dictatorial ruling class, with no say in the significant issues that 
affect us.

It is my experience, that almost all members of federal parliament 
regard members of the public, and, the opinions of members of the 
public, as beneath them, as they appear to regard themselves as members 
of parliament, as being immune, in their ivory tower, to the concerns of 
the common people. Perhaps that is why communications sent to federal 
members of parliament, especially spokespeole for the formal 
portfolio's, appear to generally disappear into the ether.

Maybe, one day, we will have a democracy, when the people have a say in 
the government of the country.

Bret Busby
West Australia

"So once you do know what the question actually is,
 you'll know what the answer means."
- Deep Thought,
  Chapter 28 of 
  "The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy:
  A Trilogy In Four Parts",
  written by Douglas Adams, 
  published by Pan Books, 1992 

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