The Blackfella referendum should fail miserably

It is not enough that this referendum should fail. In the interests of good governance and a united Australia, it should fail convincingly. And it should do so on the basis of a thorough understanding by all voters of its inherent dangers and weaknesses. It should neither succeed nor fail on the basis of emotional feel-good rhetoric on the one hand, or intuitive distrust on the other.

If its supporters believe it failed because people did not understand the detail, they will simply try again later, and this issue will remain a festering sore in our public discourse for years to come. It must fail on principle, not detail.

So, it is entirely reasonable for each side to ask genuine questions of the other.

This is not insult but engagement. Until now, it has been those against constitutional amendment doing the interrogating.

But here are 10 fair questions for these opponents.

1/ Most basic, why do you think the subject of a voice is not important enough to be in the Constitution? What is your principled criterion for any inclusion? If it is indeed one of basic importance – like the founding fathers – how does the position of Indigenous people not pass the test? If you are worried about repealing the voice, that is always open to the Australian people through further referendum.

The Constitution says nothing about our history, our values or our aspirations. It says nothing about our rights as individuals. It says nothing about the ‘founding fathers’. It is, in fact, a very prosaic document. It is not like the American Declaration of Independence. It does not hold any truths to be self-evident.

It is not, as is often claimed, the ‘birth certificate’ of our nation. If you are looking for a slick but specious analogy, a better choice would be the ‘pre-nuptial agreement’ of our nation. But, in fact, it is neither of those things.

Firstly, our Constitution is a power-sharing agreement between the Commonwealth and the states and, secondly, it is an operating manual for our Parliament. Nothing more. It is, in effect, a contract – one which is subject to the jurisdiction of the High Court. As a contract, it is not an appropriate vehicle for emotional or feel-good rhetoric. That would introduce ambiguities that can, and probably will, have unintended consequences.

Who we are as a nation – our values and aspirations – is reflected in the democratic traditions and institutions we inherited from Great Britain. And, more importantly, in our legislation, which has made us one of the most diverse, tolerant and generous nations on Earth. It is in our legislation that we must look to enrich all the people, to alleviate disadvantage, to unite us and to recognize past injustices.

2/ Why is it always wrong to have provisions about race in a constitution? Our own Constitution has always had race provisions. Why have you not demanded their repeal? How do you explain away race aspects of other constitutional settlements, including those of great functioning democracies such as the UK, the US and Canada?

The existing race provision (Section 51 (xvii) was included to advantage or advance Aboriginal people. It was not intended to give them rights or, more importantly, status that other Australians do not possess. In 1967, the vast majority of the Australian people believed that eventually this provision would become moribund because, if it were effective, Aborigines would all enjoy the same lifestyle as the rest of us. If Aboriginal people feel Section 51 (xvii) is now an unwelcome imposition that, in justice, mandates they should have a say in any legislation enacted under it, why would they not lobby for its repeal and have done with it?

3/ Is the definition of “Indigenous person” really such a problem? Why will it matter? The voice amendment would confer no new rights of benefits. If you really are worried, why not have a suitable definition in the supporting legislation?

This is a major problem because even Aboriginal people themselves cannot agree on it. There is a de facto definition now – a person must be of Aboriginal descent, must identify as Aboriginal and be accepted as such by his community. The most fundamental of these three elements – without which the other two are meaningless – ‘Aboriginal descent’ is never tested. Aboriginal academics themselves, such as historian Victoria Grieve-Williams recognize the problem this has already caused and has allowed grifters such as fauxborigine charlatan ‘Professor’ Bruce Pascoe to flourish. If this is a problem now, how more problematic will it be when there are, presumably well remunerated, seats to fill in a network of alternative parliaments?

4/ Indeed, why are we talking only about the constitutional amendment but not the surrounding legislation? The legislation will be completely under the control of parliament, and this is where multiple guarantees and failsafes could be placed. These could cover composition of the body, its powers, procedures and priorities, just as examples.

A provision in the Constitution should be not over-prescriptive – Parliament should be able to fine tune it over time. But neither should it provide carte blanche to the Parliament. The multiple guarantees and failsafes, if they are in the legislation, can be changed by further legislation at any time. Guarantees, including a failsafe definition of who is an Aborigine, must be in the Constitution itself.

5/ How could the Voice ever actually be a third chamber of parliament? It cannot initiate, amend, reject or pass laws. It may well be influential, but that is a different thing. We would want that. Many bodies are influential: lobby groups, parliamentary committees, business, unions and so forth. None dictates.

As Voice supporter Chris Kenny puts it, “The recommendations of an Indigenous voice would carry great political weight, of course, but no constitutional power.” Proponents of the Voice set great store by this assertion, but it is by no means certain that this would continue to be the case. Australia has endorsed the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, Article 19 of which states:

States shall consult and cooperate in good faith with the indigenous peoples concerned through their own representative institutions in order to obtain their free, prior and informed consent before adopting and implementing legislative or administrative measures that may affect them.

The Greens policy is that this should be enacted into legislation. If that happened, imagine what the High Court could do with that.

And carrying ‘great political weight’ can be a two-edged sword, given the propensity for modern governments to succumb to woke populism, irrespective of the consequences. What chance a Labor/Greens government (or even a Liberal one for that matter) accepting flawed advice rather than provoke a fight with the vocal activist class, given special Constitutional status and brandishing the provisions of the Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples? Odds on, I would think.

6/ Why does the election of Indigenous members of parliament invalidate the need for a Voice? Those members do not compose an internal Indigenous voice because they are not elected to represent only Indigenous people. On the contrary, they must represent all their constituents. Anything else would be a basic breach of representative democracy.

In response to this I quote no less an authority than Professor Craven himself from question five: “Many bodies are influential: lobby groups, parliamentary committees, business, unions and so forth.”

Most legislation relating to Aborigines is what I call ‘enhancing legislation’, which dispenses grants, protects Aboriginal culture and heritage and promotes education and advancement. No Aborigine is compelled to accept any of this largesse if they find it inadequate or wrongly targeted. But they are free to lobby to have it changed or expanded. They can do this through their Parliamentary representatives or through their own activist groups. In exactly the same way that, for example, farmers have a say in the formulation of laws that affect them via the National Farmers Federation.

7/ Why would the High Court run amok with an Indigenous voice? The constitutional provisions would be mechanical, not thematic. They would be very like the 1967 referendum insertions, which in 50 years have never excited the court. What would be dangerous in the Constitution are broad, sweeping values. This is where amending the preamble is dangerous. How can this be advanced as an alternative to recognition?

‘Why would the High Court run amok with an indigenous voice?’ Because they can. Think Commonwealth vs Love and Thoms for a start.

8/ Why must every Aboriginal body end up as a repetition of the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Commission? We have absorbed ATSIC’s painful lessons. This is where legislation can deal comprehensively with qualification, membership, terms, accountability and removal. Let’s talk.

We already have evidence that this type of representation has failed in the past. If we have really learned our ATSIC lesson, let’s legislate it first to make sure before embedding it in the Constitution.

9/ Why are we so sure a Voice would make no difference “on the ground”? On the face of it, a body specially centred on Indigenous issues should at least focus attention. But again, what about the legislation? This is where practical inquiries, processes and outcomes can be mandated for the voice. This is a better debate than a battle of cliches.

When seeking to amend the Constitution, we must take into account unintended or unforeseen consequences. We don’t need to be ‘sure’ about these consequences, just aware they may happen and gauge whether the putative benefit outweighs these risks. ATSIC suggests not, in this case.

10/ Finally, what will be the consequences if the referendum fails? This really is a question for each of the two Yes cases. The bottom line is that Indigenous souls would be broken. This is not an argument to pass a bad proposal. But those putting up a plan bear a huge responsibility in bringing it to a referendum. Those opposing it carry an at least equal responsibility in seeking to defeat it.

This referendum, if it is successful, will be divisive. But even by virtue of the fact that it is being put, it is also divisive. Referenda are notoriously difficult to achieve in Australia. In 120 years, only 8 of 44 referenda have succeeded. The last significant proposed change – the so-called Australian Republic – bolstered by apparent widespread support, failed spectacularly. It’s supporters, although disappointed, accepted the result and quietly got on with working towards a new attempt, as is their right.

There is every chance this one will also fail. But this failure will not be accepted with quiet resignation and a determination to simply legislate the Voice as a consolation prize. It will be attended by shrieks of racism, protests and possibly violence. That would be a regrettable situation, but preventing such an outcome would be a very flimsy reason to simply go with the flow and vote Yes.

On the other hand, we often hear the simplistic refrain ‘if you don’t understand it, don’t vote for it’. That is not a valid basis to vote No. If you don’t understand it, then you should find out about it. That is the purpose of a No Case. To provide voters the information you need to make an informed decision and to be able to defend it.

I believe it is not enough that this referendum should fail. In the interests of good governance and a united Australia, it should fail convincingly. And it should do so on the basis of a thorough understanding by all voters of its inherent dangers and weaknesses. It should neither succeed nor fail on the basis of emotional feel-good rhetoric on the one hand, or intuitive distrust on the other.

If its supporters believe it failed because people did not understand the detail, they will simply try again later, and this issue will remain a festering sore in our public discourse for years to come. It must fail on principle, not detail.

The bottom line is that opponents of the voice face as many – or more – pointed questions as those favouring constitutional recognition. It would be good if we could engage around some convincing answers.

About Editor, cairnsnews

One of the few patriots left who understands the system and how it has been totally subverted under every citizen's nose. If we can help to turn it around we will, otherwise our children will have nothing. Our investigations show there is no 'government' of the people for the people of Australia. The removal of the Crown from Australian Parliaments, followed by the incorporation of Parliaments aided by the Australia Act 1987 has left us with corporate government with policies not laws, that apply only to members of political parties and the public service. There is no law, other than the Common Law. This fact will be borne out in the near future as numerous legal challenges in place now, come to a head soon.

Posted on October 11, 2022, in aborigines and tagged . Bookmark the permalink. 28 Comments.

  1. “The Uluru Statement” issued five years ago calls for the amendment of the 1901 Constitution to recognize a “First Nation Voice”. Make no mistake this Voice is to be a voice of sovereignty – behind which the United [Communist] Nations and the Communist Party of China will govern.

    Just as the Communist Party governs behind the ANC in Africa – the white population is to be placed under the Black Overseer in Australia.

    The issue with this referendum is: sovereignty.

    The Uluru Statement rightfully refers to the Australian land as ‘our country’. Others who are born on this land also claim Australia as ‘our country’. The 1901 includes all who are living on this land under its provisions. The Crown has abdicated and sovereignty belongs to the Australian people who have yet to exercise it as a people because it was hijacked when The Crown covertly abdicated.

    The sovereignty is for all who were born on this land to exercise, not just one segment of the population – which has their own industry to represent them as in government and government operations. Just because their own leaders , their Law men and women, have been sidelined and a crew of ‘abo box tickers’ have taken those positions does not entitle them to expand this industry (worth billions) but rather entitles them to a process to get their real leaders in their law, culture and community recognized.

    In the Mabo Decision, the High Court stood down from the issue of sovereignty and would not rule upon it. It did however recognize two sources of law (jurisprudence) in Australia. Without any understanding of this issue, the majority Australian population is being taken to referendum with a lot of slick advertising and slogans with a view to getting them to ceding sovereignty.

    No one is surppressing the Aboriginal Law and culture in communities where they live on their own land. But it is a fact that the Aboriginal interests and industry are creating ‘no-go’ zones and rules for Australians. There will only be more of this under their sovereignty.


  2. And down in the South East corner of the Big Pineapple and a lot closer to the rotten core of the George St Cabal than the Pointy End of FNQ – apartheid is coming to Stradbroke Island which we are all supposed to call Menjiribah (sp??) . As it happens the UNDRIP / Communist Blacks are always just fine with apartheid. (As if they don’t have a voice). Here they are opposing apartheid on the Whites. The Courier Mail is tracking this story. Oct 16 2022
    ‘Reverse Racism’ : Line in the Sand Marks Straddie Segregation


  3. lindesymonds and daviddd2 – Correct and quite true.

    The “first nation” will be destroyed by those who are now stirring them up to be a militant adversary toward the rest of us.

    This will not end well for the first nation (them) or the second nation – the rest of (us).

    Divide and conquer – is working right now.

    Quite sad, the first nation people will soon end up doing what they have been protesting against since Cook stepped ashore.


  4. “Uluru Statement History is Calling”

    It is indeed! A “First Nation” with 363 languages… That’s quite a feat!

    Australia is being carved up all right, into impotent little tribes, including those of the “Last Nation”.

    The Australian Theater of the Absurd rolls on!


  5. First Nations, Second, Third, Fourth Nations : Vaxxed / Unvaxxed population : The Ruling Chosen vs the goyim : Dar al Harb vs Dar al Islam. Australia is being carved up and served to its Masters – the United [Communist] Nations which have outsourced management and control to our WEFfie CoVID Regime and its Politburo (National Cabinet) and Cheka (Operation CoVID Shield) and the Communist Party of China.

    If this referendum gets up the UNDRIP screws will be applied. Black Overseers will ensure UN Sustainable Development laws get passed. Every day will be National Sorry Day.

    They already have an Aboriginal Industry just for their Voice – worth billions to the Australian taxpayers – and worth squat to their communities on the land in terms of addressing the social issues identified by their community leaders.

    Uluru Statement History is Calling


  6. Well, I reckon the Last Nation is entitled to a voice too, then.


  7. It is large amounts of ceremonial smoke that is being used to distract us and cover what the WEF types are doing in the back rooms.

    There are way more important things to worry about.

    If we are dead dying and wounded what will be the benefit of having a first nation or a first anything?

    I am Aussie born and bred, apparently I am not first nation – at best I may be second nation. As such I am not at all interested in bowing down to any first nation or any other control group, I have already had enough of tyrants and control groups.

    I once shook the hand of Senator Neville Bonner, I was happy to do that, he was not a militant person. He had a lot of respect from second nation types such as myself. From memory he was re-elected five times.

    Many of those who have followed on from Neville Bonner should be ashamed of themselves, they are (destroying) throwing away what Neville achieved.


  8. Freddie: As per usual, Well Said!


  9. Blanx14… Good for you, mate.

    There is massive confusion about the term national sovereignty. There are two distinct meanings.

    The first springs from certain Arnhem Land tribes considering formal Declarations of National Sovereignty over their own tribal land. As they say, they never ceded sovereignty prior to 1788, they successfully repelled armed attempts to kill them all (for fifty years up to 1936); and government lied to them before 1973, and ever since Whitlam was sacked in 1975. There were two brief years of official Aboriginal Self-determination.

    Currently, their culture is under sustained attack, their children 5 and over are being jabbed to death, their lands are being taken over, and the medical profession and grocery chains are killing them. The only way they can see a future is to create their own economy with a trade strategy and their own government. I support them to the hilt.

    The second national sovereignty is an absurdity. By definition, tribal people cannot have national loyalty. Their loyalty is to their own tribe and traditional mother’s tribe (to put it over-simplified). The dumbarse black radicals in the southern states have no idea what they are talking about and they are oblivious to the irony of the world’s oldest surviving democracy attempting to end democracy with racism.


  10. If this referendum ‘gets up’, the Xi will hit the Feng. The Fourth Political Position of Marxist Leninism / Maoism is big, big, big on the whole ‘first in time, first in right’ principle. This idea that the Han Chinese are the ‘first nation’ in Communist China is why they are concealing the pyramids of Xi-an and the mummies of the Taurim Basin. And uhm pyramids are also in Australia. Those who know about circumnavigation of the earth by ancient peoples and their civilisations and their expeditionary journeys should have a pretty good idea what is under those pyramids.


  11. Thanks CnsNews you’ve attracted some savvy folk, no lame excuses for human strength with some commentators, not just relating to this article, but they come out everywhere amongst your pages, gives this old girl some hope for us humans, just when I think I don’t care if I die, had an adventurous life, (it’s a fckdup world anyway, sick of banging me head up against the idiot wall), along comes those warriors & I realize we’re not completely fckd as the fight & spirit is alive & raging, we’re still yelling loud & clear & one thing might strike a nerve with someone somewhere & the fight for truth keeps coming & bs gets exposed, wonderful stuff, makes one keep going & spreading & sharing news, the right news, the truthful unadulterated news, facts over bs fantasy & unwarranted fear.
    Regards to this articles comments:
    Freddie, DJ, blanxie, daviddd2, Ray, Betty Mac (don’t ever apologise Betty for an off topic comment, truth is truth, warning is warning, needs to be said), lindeS, Georgia, CrissX & others… Damn Straight! to all of your comments, legends! You all see it…
    See it don’t matter whether you’re a black fella, or a white fella, or any skin colour fella, but if you come from ‘the something for nothing tribe’, or the ‘radical extremist tribe’ you ain’t ever gonna get it, as you’re too blind & busy being an over the top radical. Ahh there’s hope for us yet


  12. Anyone considering voting for this ‘voice’ should spend two hours watching this
    Communist social engineering of Australian Aboriginals


  13. This lauding of “first nations people” is a PSYOP. In reality they want them all dead after they have served their purpose IMO.


    Australia, Forced Vaccines, and Ethnic Cleansing*

    By Jennifer Elliott

    The Author warns that infants who have suffered repeated infections should not be immunised under the governments new forced Vaccination Campaign and only those infants under special risk should receive them.

    There was a forced vaccination campaign in 1970-1 in the Northern Territory where forced vaccinations had a 50% fatality rate. This was reported by Dr Archie Kalokerinos, who was there during that time. He later wrote a book on it, called Every Second Child. ………………”

    Liked by 1 person

  14. What cretin invented the “1st nation” moniker to describe the Aboriginal populations of Australia?

    The concept of a “nation” is a white fella, 19th century concept. Nothing to do with the Aboriginal populations and reality. And you can’t help solve real problems by faking somebody’s reality and dumping it on them.

    Enough of the brainwashing! None of us is going to be better off because of it.


  15. Locally, Aborigines know me as a practical supporter of their various causes, but being tribal, their needs are known only to themselves. What mainstream Australians learn from the media are Aboriginal causes, are irrelevant to NT people’s needs. Frankly, we don’t know what they are talking about and we doubt they do too. People fought for a century for “one man; one vote” and these pseudo-blackfellas want to destroy what remnant of democracy survives. What is demonstrated here is profound ignorance and a sadly extant ignorance.

    The truth is, the only voice that is heard in parliament is Rupert Murdoch’s.

    Liked by 1 person

  16. What’s to understand? There are no first nation, second nation or third nation Australians. Whatever creates different and special classes of Australian citizens deserves a big fat NO.

    Anything else is an attempt to break up and destroy Australia. We’re ripe for plunder by the WEF and the UN globalists as we are, imagine how much easier we’ll be when they divide us to conquer us.

    Open up the proposed Pandora’s Box at your own peril.

    Liked by 2 people

  17. If you don’t understand it, vote no. That’s very good advice. First look at who is proposing the change. If it comes from Labor-Green-Green_Independents, vote no. The LibCP coalition are socialist greens so yes, just vote no again. There’s nothing here to understand. It’s too difficult to sort through the lies of politicians. Remember, a politician is always lying if his lips are moving (LabGreenGrIndepLibCP anyway). People on the side of evil have slick tongues and can trick most people.


  18. Georgia Davidson

    My concern is one side will be given unlimited support and platforms while the other side is muzzled

    Liked by 1 person

  19. Skightly off Topic! Apologies!
    Lyndesy’s remark” this referendum was never about quality of life or human rights”, also applies to the extremely dangerous DigitalID/ cashless legislation being proposed.
    It too, will change our quality of life and human rights…it is NOT about our privacy or safety as they claim.
    The part that sticks in my mind for some peculiar reason, is that if I have no credits on the proposed credit system, I am only allowed to travel within 1km of my home EVER!
    If this law is passed, we shall have NO freedom, NO safety( from thuggish police etc), NO rights, NO money, NO food…probably NO home…. and add to that, we will be microchippped like cattle!
    This legislation should be put to a Referendum also.It is far more important than this rubbish proposed by Albanese.Is his ref. a distraction….can’t have 2 Referendums etc etc.?
    I sincerely hope that all readers will take the time to read up on the details of Digital ID/ cashless.It is horrifying and a total end to life as we know it.

    Liked by 1 person

  20. I am an Aboriginal and Torres Strait Island man.. I do not support the voice rubbish.. l support the truth telling .. like tell me the truth about how come we have a 1973 “constitution” of sorts pushed hard by Labor and the original 1901 version.. tell me the truth about the Australia Act.. where do Indigenous peoples fit with that.. tell me the truth about a system that can impose a 90 year Suppression Order that supports and protects political and high profile paedophiles… Then we might get somewhere…

    Liked by 3 people

  21. There are even more issues, besides Rothschilds wanting ” blackfellas” becoming the first owners of all land titles, so the huge debt, which the private political party corporations have racked can be secured.

    Charlie can’t become King because there is no Constitutionally lawfully appointed Governor General to request him to be our Sovereign under The Royal Styles and Titles Act.
    Elizabeth failed to correct the mess while she was alive. We only have a fake Governor appointed by private political parties, with whom we the people hold NO contract under the Constitution of The Commonwealth of Australia.

    If Charles is Crowned under the political convenience of The “Anglican” Church, then He is nothing more than a private employee of the political parties and holds no separation of powers between Church and State. The Common Law ceases to exist and He isn’t Crowned or held to the Act of Settlement of 1700.

    All your land titles belong to the political parties. You are slaves and Tennant’s, just like Karl Marx intended.


  22. Why are the Australian people being rorted for a genocidal tribe?? Not first nations people. Cease the Excessive amount of TAXPAYERS money to a bunch of freeholders.


  23. Study history. The Aboriginees were NOT the ‘First People’ here in Australia.

    Liked by 1 person

  24. Study history. The Aboriginees were NOT the ‘First People’ in Australia.


  25. Somebody is very keen to carve up Australia, fragment it and exploit it through the time honoured divide and rule game. And the treacherous political scumbags are all for it, both the pros and the fake cons.

    Liked by 1 person

  26. So, a referendum, are we going to be told which Constitution is running this..?
    We have two Constitutions, one is owned by the Australian Corporate Government.
    The other is our rightful Commonwealth Constitution 1900.
    Could we trust a bodgy Corporate Constitution 1988.?
    Or our rightful Commonwealth Constitution 1900.?
    Perhaps run the two Constitutions for our choice….?

    Liked by 1 person

  27. This is a constitutional issue. Does the 1901 cover all persons living here as citizens of Australia or does it not? The burden of proof lies upon those who interpret the 1901 to mean that it does not refer to Indigenous persons – many of whom have travelled abroad on Australian passports as Australian citizens.

    But those who will argue that the 1901 does not cover Indigenous persons as citizens are never going to step up and argue their case because they can not demonstrate it.

    If they win the referendum then ‘the Indigenous Voice’ will become the ruling voice in Australian affairs in line with UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous People.

    If this referendum succeeds: welcome to a very new country.

    Think back to the ‘equality of marriage’ issue plebiscite. That was never about equality or the human and civil rights which all Australians enjoy or should enjoy. It was about the minority dictating to the majority: censoring their speech and compelling behaviour. For example a statement like ‘marriage is between a man and a woman’ is Wrongthink in the school and workplace and even litigated against in the courts.

    Liked by 1 person

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