Howard declared it a crime to stop Australians waving or wearing the Australian flag. Morrison agreed. It was 2005 and a Patriotism and jingoistic nationalism enabled and encouraged ultra-right Nationalists to continue to wage war on migrants and Muslims after Cronulla. Howards Hitleresque response was to the Big Day Out banning the flag as it encouraged sectarian violence, arrogance and disrespect of Australia and who we were by White Nationalists and their ignorant camp followers. morrison saw it as a political advantage. (ODT)
Scott Morrison’s pledge to crack down on climate protesters is in part a deflection, a ruse to encourage climate change deniers by implying that there’s nothing wrong with building more coal-fired power station; it’s the “extremist, radical activists” who are out of line. And it’s a way of wedging Labor. Yet it would be wrong to see it merely as an act of bellicose posturing from a wannabe populist strong man.
Morrison’s past record suggests more than a hint of an authoritarian, if not autocratic, personality beneath the evasions, the secrecy and the cultivated, folksy veneer of the sport-loving, cap-wearing , beer-drinking suburban dad as populist leader.
Given the proliferation of national security laws which have hugely strengthened the power of the state, since 2011, moreover, we must challenge Morrison’s latest florid, rhetorical assault on democracy; resist all attempts at division and the silencing of dissent. Our future as a civil society; our freedom depends upon it.