Vhere are your papers?


by Chris Becker

Below is independent MP, Andrew Wilkie, in Parliament yesterday on the reasons why Australia is slipping into the realms of a “pre-Police State”:

Here are the 10 characteristics of a pre-Police State that the MP outlines:

  1. All members of community are monitored by the State (mandatory meta-data retention)
  2. The media is manipulated/bullied, particularly State sponsored (e.g ABC/SBS funding cuts)
  3. Manipulation of the judiciary (Royal Commission bias and others)
  4. Secrecy in government (e.g Nauru, “on-water operations”)
  5. Arrested on suspicion alone, without evidence
  6. Indefinite incarceration without trial
  7. Disregard of international laws and conventions on human rights
  8. Parliament not allowed to debate or vote on military action by ruling government
  9. Safeguard checks and balances are disregarded and bullied if opposed by ruling government (e.g Human Rights commissioner)
  10. Security agencies work outside their legislative powers (e.g Border Force in Melbourne) – VHERE ARE YOUR PAPERS?

I would add the militarisation of police to that list, a road the US has gone down and is now regretting, and one Australian neo-conservatives are more than happy to travel in the form of Border Force.

But to be sure we’re not talking fascist pre-war Italy or Communist Soviet Union or Pinochet’s Chile, not by a long shot! But it’s the slippery path that the former Army lieutenant colonel and intelligence officer, who has stood on the side of truth particularly in the face of governments who have lied about going to war, is quite rightly concerned about.

As Australia goes to war again, without a mandate nor a reason why absence in such a conflict is detrimental to Australian security, nor without outlining the affects on the rest of the ADF’s strategic potential and abilities if drawn away half way across the world, Wilkie’s critique is timely.

Please watch at least the last 5 minutes where Mr Wilkie outlines why these pre-concerns within a democracy can easily slip into a Police State – legally.


  1. The chamber appears to be largely empty.
    It’s as though MPs who have encouraged or failed to prevent these changes were to embarrassed to listen.

    EDIT: I wonder if ‘government by scapegoat’ would be an acceptable addition to the list?

  2. Agreed this has occurred with the compliance of the media and the stupidity of the electorate where a threat is restated and exaggerated thus permitting the government to exercise what it considers its manifest right to ensure national security.

  3. LOL and people still vote for the oligarchy.

    Absolutely dumbed down by the media and corporate interests

    I used to think Chomsky and Propagandhi and their likes were conspiracy theorists/tin hat brigade worrying on a global money power elite long game, but it looks absolutely on par now.

  4. I get the economic narrative of this blog, its great…..best on the net imo

    is the political commentary descending to the green left weekly…seriously?????

    the other aspects of this blog are becoming tiresome….eg last week about asylum seekers…how many of you blokes writing have asylum seekers as family….well I DO…first hand experience here

    my mum and her family are refugees, and I find this constant theme very trying..eg Australia is the worst performer…get a grip fellas

    Australia the police state…laughable…..has anybody here actually travelled to a real police state?? I have….in communist Europe and Russia.. u have no idea..

    I have had family members that have lived in one too…so cut the crap

    • Probably why they use this neologism ‘pre-police state’ and talk about Australia heading in that direction, not actually being there (i.e. at pre-police state level, let alone full blow police state level)

      I also note that many who have lived in totalitarian societies during the period when their society was in transition into that category have expressed considerable regret that they weren’t far more concerned earlier on.

    • It’s heading toward that direction : government suggesting automatic removal of citizenship without court review, metadata storage for everyone without warrants, and CCTV everywhere.
      There was a time when just mentioning ‘Australian card’ got everyone up in arms. These days, most people will think it’s a good idea. People are surrendering their rights because they’re afraid of ‘terrorists’.

      • People are surrendering their rights because they’re ignorant (wilfully) uneducated, stupid, dumbed down, can’t read or comprehend & have limited source of information. Then there’s the fear mongering from these limited sources; terrorists , crime, increasing rents, fomo on housing ( mortgage) having enough retirement funds, paying for your funeral, health insurance, life insurance, private education ( even those who went through it can’t see it’s limited value unless you’re talking super elite private school where you’re child will be bastardised into submission through abuse while the community turns a blind eye besides there’s a royal commission to deal with that ie hear a lot of compelling stories while doing nothing if consequence) & ultimately it doesn’t matter cos if you’re part if that elite you’ll be looked after anyway – just take a look at who is running the country!

      • In the 1950s USA, during McCarthyism, the only campaign cry you need to win an election was “Communist!”.

        In the 1960s Deep South, it was “Nigger!”.

        In 2013 Oz, it was “Boats!”

    • @Dan the Man
      Qld under Joh Bejelkie Peterson in the 1960’s was very much a police state & a corrupt one.
      Arrestees held incomunicado (my Dad), Special Branch surviellence of political opponents(me & my mum& her ban the bomb friends, uni students & Unions),banning of freedom of assembly(3 or more people), banning of ALL protests, violent police brutality & harrasment of dissenters, lots of brown paper bags full of cash (Russ Hinze was known as the Minister for brown paper bags & concrete boots).
      Certainly not on a par with Russia , USA, East Europe, South Africa or Thieu’s Vietnam, but a police state never the less.

      • sure bolstrood….

        compare qld as a ‘police state’ with east Germany and the USSR

        I have relatives who lived through it, not your candy version like you subscribe to

        did you ever go there during the communist period???

        you have no idea


        is this site turning into the green left weekly????? personally, I can’t stand shorten or abbott, but the relentless bashing of one side of politics (the right) by CB and contributors is far from balanced and gets bloody boring

      • @Dan the Man
        The splash of Green Left may be what prevents us from going the full East German Monty.
        Sorry your folk had such a rough time.

      • Bolstrood said ‘…not on a par with Russia”. It might actually be worth reading the comments before you emotively reply.
        fail? lol

        (btw, this country is full of migrants that have lived through authoritarian police states. Dont kid yourself into thinking that you somehow have greater insight than the next guy)

      • thks bolstrood…

        it was bloody dreadful in communist Europe after ww2….and during ww2…the stories my family told…

        until it happens to your family….please everyone have perspective

        they would be up with any story currently atm…except no tv cameras rolling

      • Josh MoorreesMEMBER

        I don’t understand why people think this blog is harsh on the right team of politics more than the left team. Simply put the right team is the one in power so they are the ones making the bad decisions. The left team made bad decisions in their terms as well which fed into the decisions made today. The more people subscribe to the false dichotomy of two party politics the more they win.

      • @JoshMorrees
        The Right team is always in power, for the last 40 years or more. The well named Laberal parties are of the right, which may explain why they stuff things up for ordinary folks.
        The Green “left” are really a centre party, only look left in comparison with the Laberaldoodles

      • The Right team is always in power, for the last 40 years or more.

        If the right has been in power since before mid-1975, they’ve been in power since at least 1949.

      • Touche StatSailor
        I stand corrected. Mind you just because they are of the Right does mean that they are right.

      • Josh MoorreesMEMBER

        Oh yeah no doubt, I think this idea of left/right is ludicrous and just another way that the duopoly system tries to fool us into thinking we make a difference when we vote. So why even use the terms at all, just refer to them as politicians and be done with it.

      • personally, I can’t stand shorten or abbott, but the relentless bashing of one side of politics (the right) by CB and contributors is far from balanced and gets bloody boring

        Perhaps if the political right weren’t such a smorgasboard of bad ideas and wasteland of good ones, that might change.

        The political right has been running most of the world for thirty-odd years now. They completely own our current problems.

      • Political labelling of “right” or “left” is just a smokescreen anyway. Perhaps it pays to remember that both Robespierre and Stalin were at the “center” so that they could keep forming alliances with either “right” or “left” to oust the other side until they became the only ones left standing.

    • is the political commentary descending to the green left weekly…seriously?????

      You have NFI.

      how many of you blokes writing have asylum seekers as family….well I DO…first hand experience here

      And you would have preferred they weren’t let into the country ?

      Australia the police state…laughable…..has anybody here actually travelled to a real police state?? I have….in communist Europe and Russia.. u have no idea..

      Yeah, you’re right. A police state is a binary proposition. You you go from “free” to “oppressed” in one step. There’s never any transition period, gradual changes or warning signs. Just BAM! Go to bed one night being able to do whatever you want, wake up the next morning with a barcode tattoo and a house full of surveillance cameras.

    • So you label a certain narrative as left, then align it with Soviet Russia and it must be bad news??

      Regarding ‘dreadful communist Europe’. Yes it must have been dreadful under Soviets, but communist Yugoslavia enjoyed social and economic prosperity post ww2. It was the shift from left to right that brought the civil war of the 90s.

    • Dan – If we dont fight to maintain our rights, they will slowely get chipped away. It takes time to erode it but it will happen.

      Morals and ethics will always come second to money and vested interests.

  5. No.11 – Oust all Gov. Official who can discern between contrived political external treats and real one.
    No 12 – Screw over all whistle-blowers (Nauru & RB)

  6. Just because you’re paranoid doesn’t mean they are not out to get you.
    By the way Swampy, Lismore electorate has the highest registered gun ownership in NSW.
    Casino has more registered guns than people.

  7. “But to be sure we’re not talking fascist pre-war Italy or Communist Soviet Union.”

    Obviously not, as these were Socialist Republics.

    A far cry from the Neo-Liberal police state Australia has been forged into. It’s no wonder we are leading the world in eroding civil liberties – we’ve never had to fight for them. We’ve already seen a CIA coup, election rigging, the privatisation of public policy creation, ect, and yet the public have done nothing. They don’t care, we’ve always been a puppet state of zero sovereignty.

    That’s not going to change.

  8. I don’t think 1920s-30s German individuals were inherently bad people – in general they were just folk trying to raise their children to be decent people and have a decent life.

    Something happened to turn the nation evil. Who’s to say that the same couldn’t happen here or anywhere else?

    • Josh MoorreesMEMBER

      At an individual level people are usually good. But the germans did perfect the art of propaganda and humans are relatively simple creatures to manipulate.

      • Australians are apathetic and so were the Germans in the 1930’s

        This sums it up Aussies nicely.

        First they came for the Socialists, and I did not speak out—
        Because I was not a Socialist.
        Then they came for the Trade Unionists, and I did not speak out—
        Because I was not a Trade Unionist.
        Then they came for the Jews, and I did not speak out—
        Because I was not a Jew.
        Then they came for me—and there was no one left to speak for me.

      • Bubbley, history is full of similar examples.

        Perhaps, Danton may have realized that it was a grave error to side with Robespierre oust Hebert. Likewise, Bukharin may have realized that it was a fatal error to side with Stalin to oust Trotsky.

        On the other hand, Viceroy Gunray did not realize that it was a fatal error to side with Palpatine until the very end.

        I think most of Aussies are Gunrays.

  9. hey man….they make us put fences around backyard swimming pools ffs LOL
    It’s not them so much, it’s us, we are institutionalized, we think all that is normal

    I dont really care that much, it’s still better than where I came from, just worried about the kids growing up in this country. They are so used to the nanny state that they go overseas on holidays in the third world and they don’t even know to question the booze they give them, never mind the drugs or the safety of that bungee cord… I mean if it wasnt safe the cops would’ve taken it down, right?


    • It is a rude shock alright, when you first go abroad. You’re so used to everything being “safe” that you don’t really know how to question authority. I know because when I was in my early 20s I first left Australia and travelled and now that I’ve had that experience I can’t believe how naive I was. I was simply unprepared for the world and what it’s really like.

  10. I’m a bit surprised by the general concern expressed here about the Australian Government and what law enforcement agencies have become in light of the electorates acceptance of Big Brother. Bubbley is on the right track….. But. How about these, the Media came after everything traditional and pretended to be journalists while in fact they were propagandists who employed confected outrage as a political weapon. But I still praised the ABC, religiously watched Q & A and bought advertising from the SMH.
    They came for the firearms twenty years ago. But I helped turn admiration of police into a cult in spite of the fact that the massacre wouldn’t have happened if police had enforced existing law at the time. I also smugly recited the mantra that Australia has the best firearm laws in the world, while not recognizing that Canada and New Zealand do not have firearm registries. But I said nothing when there was never a Royal Commission established to examine the failings of government agencies that facilitated the massacre which was used to create nearly 400 pages of law in a few days. The primary intent of the draconian laws being to turn the habitual law abider into a unwitting law breaker.