Sunday, 5 September 2010

A Royal Response

After last week’s Sunday Age published the result of the latest opinion poll indicating that support for a republic in Australia has slumped to a 16-year low, today’s Sunday Age published three letters to the editor. None came from a republican. The first writer points out:
"Perhaps we wonder what we'd get if we appointed our own head of state or, more likely, had one appointed for us by whichever boy's club was making decisions at the time.

"After all, in Victoria we have an unelected premier who, in the company of a couple of mates, makes decisions related to planning or public works on our behalf behind closed doors and refuses to tell us how much the consequences of those decisions will cost us (for example, the desalination plant).

"At the same time, he's entertaining people who can financially benefit from these decisions and seeking donations from them to enhance the finances of his own political party, with the intention of using that money to advertise that party [in order] to keep himself and his mates in power. Well, we wouldn't want an Australian head of state like that, would we? God save the Queen
The second asks:
"If the media has its way and we pass a referendum, what model would be adopted?

"The American public is split down the middle with their "popularly elected" president. The US president is elected by far fewer than 50 per cent of the voters. The British monarch presides over the British Commonwealth of nations of which we are a part. The current monarch has held the position since 1952. In that time, the US has had 12 presidents and are about to embark on the divisive process again. Please do not inflict that on us.

"Let us adhere to what works for us
The third has a particular demand to the editor of The Sunday Age:
"Does the new opinion poll mean that The Sunday Age will return to reporting in a fair and unbiased way on the Australian monarchy?"
The editor did not give an answer to this question. Only time will tell if unbiased journalism returns to The Sunday Age or any other Fairfax publication.

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