Australian Republic Constitution
Australian Flag News Get Involved! Events Resources
Main Menu
ACM Home
About ACM
ACM News
Anthems
Afghan Court Martial
Book Reviews
The Commonwealth
Contact ACM
Convenor's Column
Constitutional Monarchies and Republics Compared
Constitutional Monarchy in the Muslim World
Cost of Republicanism to the Taxpayer
Crowned Republic
Diamond Jubilee 2012
Event News
Federalism and the Mining Tax
Fiji
Flag: Keep The Flag
Governor of New South Wales
Head of State
Keating-Turnbull Republic: The Nineties
Knights & Dames
Latest News and Opinions
Links
Mate for a Head of State
Media and monarchy
Nile Inquiry
Opinion Polling
Orthodoxy and Monarchy
People's Republic?
Plebiscites
Prince Andrew
Prince Charles
Prince Harry
Prince Philip
Prince William & Catherine
Prince William In Australia
Prince William: The Early Years
Racist Republic?
Reserve Powers of the Crown
Resources
Return the Governor
Royal Commissions
Royal Finances
Self Funded Monarchy
Royal Yacht Britannia
The Succession
2020 Summit
Join our Mailing List
See our selection of videos from across the world:-
ACM Videos
AussieCrownTV - ACM's own TV channel:
Aussie Crown TV
Follow ACM on Facebook:
Facebook
Self Funded Monarchy
Self Funded Monarchy
Royal Finances
Royal Finances
Diamond Jubilee 2012
Diamond Jubilee 2012
Head of State
Prince Philip
Prince Philip
Special Caribbean Report: Crown & Commonwealth

      Crown

The Commonwealth
The Commonwealth
Prince Harry
Prince Harry
Prince Andrew
Prince Andrew
Knights & Dames
Knights & Dames
The King's Speech: read the book, see the film.

The King's Speech

Watch the 2010 Neville Bonner Oration: Tony Abbott.
Tony Abbott
Nile Inquiry
Royal Commissions
Royal Commissions
Opinion Polls

 

Plebiscites
Plebiscites
2020 Summit
2020 Summit
Orthodoxy & Monarchy
Orthodoxy & Monarchy
Afghan Court Martial
Constitutional Monarchy in the Muslim World
Constitutional Monarchy in the Muslim World
Mate for a Head of State
Mate for a Head of State
Racist Republic?
Racist Republic
A People's Republic?
A People's republic?
Keating Turnbull Republic: The Nineties
The Keating Turnbull Republic
Crowned Republic
Crowned Republic
Polls
Republicans' Best Asset?
Is David Flint ( National Convenor since 1998) the republicans best asset, as some claim?
ACM Home arrow 2020 Summit

2020 Summit

2020 Summit

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Having promised not to raise the republic issue (that is a politicians’ republic) in the first term, this emerged as the principal item on the agenda of the 2020 Summit held in April 2008 by the Rudd government.

Attendance at the Summit was rigged as if we were living in some tinpot dictatorship, and it was then so mismanaged that a leading republican likened it to a Mad Hatters Tea Party.

The governance panel of 100 produced one vote opposed to a republic and one abstention. 

The one person who voted for the retention of the constitutional monarchy, Senator George Brandis, was widely but wrongly  assumed to be a republican.

According to republican one leading republican delegate, it was so mismanaged it became a Mad Hatter's Tea Party. Then the  resolutions passed by the governance panel and approved at the plenary session called for the termination of constitutional links with the UK, links which were ended in 1986.

The record was subsequently changed without explanation to amend the resolutions adopted.

The Summit was an expensive public embarrassment.

 



2020 Summit: Second Anniversary Print E-mail
Written by Professor David Flint AM   
Friday, 09 April 2010
This month marks the second anniversary of the 2020 Summit.  

 I was reminded of this by a piece by Andrew Bolt  in News Limited newspapers on 7 April, 2010, who wrote:

“ It was two years ago that these 1000 - glorying at being hailed as our finest minds - gathered in Canberra to show just what fools they really were....
This rigged assembly produced precisely the group think you'd expect. ... Of the 100 asked to discuss a republic, only one was a monarchist.”




...the Summit gerrymander...




I suspect that the sole monarchist, Senator George Brandis was invited because they thought he was not a monarchist.   This was as we said at the time, a gerrymander of which Robert Mugabe would be envious.

 Remember that in the actual vote in 1999, the one vote that counted, 55% of Australians registered their preference for the existing Federal Commonwealth under the Crown. And this was against a campaign supported by great wealth, two thirds of the politicians and almost all of the mainstream media.

 Andrew Bolt makes the important point that the heads of almost every big media organisation were also invited and some actually accepted. As we suggested at the time, and Andrew Bolt says, these were the very people who should have kept their distance.

Image
[ A mad hatter's tea party ]






...Government response....






On 22 April 2009 ,  we commented on the government’s response to the Summit proposal for some sort of politicians' republic (“ Govt Summit response: republic comatose - little hope held for recovery,” 22 April 2009.)  This was that the government had decided not to proceed with the republican proposal which was the central decision of the 2020 Summit.

We asked whether this signalled an end to the millions and millions of dollars which have been poured into this folly over the last two decades. 

So, we asked, what then was the point of rigging the attendance at the Summit to produce a 98% majority (Sir William Deane abstained) and a plenary standing ovation in favour of a republic? The government was no doubt embarrassed that Summit was so mismanaged the leading republican Professor Robert Manne said it had descended into  a Mad Hatters Tea Party.




...changing the record...






The key resolution was based on a basic misunderstanding of the constitutional system which a constitutional law student would have easily identified . (Vestigial constitutional ties with the UK - which Australian politicians had long insisted on keeping - were finally ended, and then only with The Queen’s assistance,  in 1986.)

The resolutions actually passed were:

“Stage1. Introduce an Australian republic, via a two-stage process, with Stage 1 ending ties with the UK while retaining the Governor-General’s titles and powers for five years. Stage 2: Identifying new models after extensive and broad consultation.”When the Summit bosses realised their error, this was changed surreptitiously on the site to something the delegates did not adopt:

“Stage 1. That a plebiscite be held on the principle that Australia become a republic and sever ties with the Crown.   Stage 2. This is to be followed by a referendum on the model of a republic after broad and extensive consultation.  Be celebrating the fifth anniversary of the republic by 2020” 

It is worth remembering what happened with the 2020 Summit  when we try to predict the way in which the  government will run any future vote on the constitution.

Can we assume it will be fair to supporters of the existing constitutional arrangements?  On past experience, the answer is sadly obvious.


   






        

 
Please do not embarrass us with another 2020 Summit, PM Print E-mail
Written by Professor David Flint AM   
Saturday, 30 May 2009

The Prime Minister has threatened not just Australia this time, but the world, with another 2020 Summit. If he only chooses people who will vote for government policy, and if it’s not run competently, the result will be extremely embarrassing.    

On the last occasion the selection was rigged so well that Robert Mugabe would have been envious. This resulted in a 98% majority vote in favour of some undefined politicians’ republic. Opinion polls suggested this should have been no more than 45%.

 
Image
[ Not another Mad Hatter's Tea Party ]

The other thing is the Prime Minister should make sure it is run by competent people. On the last occasion the resolutions on a republic were flawed by an elementary error of law.  Even a sympathiser, Professor Robert Manne, likened it to a Mad Hatter’s Tea party.

If the Prime Minister is going to have another Summit, one which will draw international attention, could he do it properly this time and not as if he were some  tin pot dictator?

If he doesn’t he will be an international laughing stock.

(“PM sets out Asia-Pacific choice: talk or be torn,” Cynthia Banham, The Sydney Morning Herald 30-31 May,2009)

 
Taxpayers still forced to fund republican campaign Print E-mail
Written by Professor David Flint AM   
Sunday, 17 May 2009
The costs to the taxpayer of this republican folly keep on mounting. Well over two million dollars was allocated just for the 2020 Summit, which was blatantly gerrymandered to secure a 98:1 vote in favour of some vague politicians’ republic. This money was  managed almost as poorly as the drafting of the summit republican resolutions (“2020 Summit subjected to Senate scrutiny,” 1 June 2008) 

You would have thought that was it.  But now we are told that at a time when the government says it is is making hard financial decisions, an additional $45,110 was spent by the Prime Minister’s department to employ a British political consultant for three weeks.

Among his tasks was to provide “support for developing a strategic approach to future directions arising from the Australia 2020 Summit.”  (“Rudd pays Blair's 'third way' guru $45,000 for policy advice,” Mark Davis, Sydney Morning Herald, 16 May)  


Image
[ Evelyn de Morgan: The Worship of Mammon ]



What ever the guru advised, the government’s belated response to the Summit’s republican  proposal was to put it on the back burner. This was probably because polling is showing that not only support for a politicians’ republic is falling and divided, there is little interest among the general public.

When ACM objected in the recent Senate Plebiscite Bill inquiry about the amount of money which is constantly being diverted from such matters as schools, hospitals and water into the republican folly, Senator Cameron changed the subject.

He asked about the cost of such matters as Royal Palaces to the British taxpayers. He had earlier told the hearing that Canada was a republic.

I pointed out that at the beginning of the reign The Queen had transferred her income from the Crown Estate to the government and that they were making a very good profit out of that.  The money paid from that is to maintain the head of state functions; there is no salary and no superannuation for The Queen.

I reminded the Senator that we of course pay The Queen neither salary nor superannuation.

When will the republicans pay for their campaign, instead of having the taxpayer instead of having their taxpayer fund them? We are reminded constantly that this is the greatest financial crisis since the depression.

Is it not time for the republican politicians to exercise some restraint?  
 
Govt Summit response: republic comatose - little hope held for recovery. Print E-mail
Written by Professor David Flint AM   
Wednesday, 22 April 2009
Does this signal an end to the millions and millions which have been poured into this folly?  The government has decided not to proceed with the republican proposal which was the central decision of the 2020 Summit.

So what was the point of rigging the attendance at the Summit to produce a 98% majority and plenary standing ovation in favour of a republic? The government was no doubt embarrassed that Summit was so mismanaged  the leading republican Professor Robert Manne said it was like a Mad Hatters Tea Party.


Image
 

The key resolution  was based on a basic misunderstanding of the constitutional system which  a constitutional law student would have easily identified.

The resolutions of the Summit on moving to some sort of politicians' republic have been since amended, by whom we do not know. The latest version is:

  “Stage 1. That a plebiscite be held on the principle that Australia become a republic and sever ties with the Crown.

  Stage 2 .This is to be followed by a referendum on the model of a republic after broad and extensive consultation.    Be celebrating the fifth anniversary of the republic by 2020”*

 

The  government said it would respond to the  Summit recommendations at the end of last year. But according to media reports, the government have been sitting on this since Christmas.

The government belatedly announced on 22 April that it “recognizes the priority placed on constitutional reform by the community.  The government is committed to ongoing reform of our Constitution where appropriate and will draw on the input of the Summit in thinking about future possible proposals for constitutional change.”

This of course is meaningless.

On two occasions before seeing The Queen, Mr. Rudd has quite discourteously and arrogantly declared that Australia "will" become a republic. But he also says it’s a low-order issue.

 

The point is the Prime Minister knows that the people do not want change. Polling indicates support for a politicians’ republic has fallen to its lowest levels for many years, particularly among the young.

Only a few fanatics want the instability and expense of a cascading series of Federal and State plebiscites and referendums on the constitution and the flag.

The Foreign Minister has said there is no point proceeding on a politicians’ republic during the present reign. He has no doubt said this with the prior approval of the Prime Minister who actually runs the nation’s foreign affairs.

It is of course unlikely that either the Prime Minister or the Foreign Minister will be in office at that time. This silliness was fun for the republicans while it lasted. The government's response is in easily decipherable code.

No doubt through gritted teeth it concedes reluctantly  that the politicians’ republic is if not dead, comatose and that there is little hope for a recovery. 

 

*[ The original resolutions are posted below]

Read more...
 
Mad Hatter Tea Party: media accused over 2020 Summit. Print E-mail
Written by Professor David Flint AM   
Tuesday, 08 July 2008

Image

 

It seems this site was more reliable in reporting the conclusions of the 2020 Summit on proposed republican change than most of the media.

Even the self styled “serious” media were inaccurate.

It makes you wonder about the other news Australians are receiving.

This was partly because of the chaotic way the Summit was managed.

As one leading republican, Professor Robert Manne  puts it, the Summit had become a Mad Hatter’s  Tea Party ( see this column, “A Mad Hatter's Party...frenzied and chaotic" : Leading 2020 Summiteer's assessment,” 12 June, 2008).

 

How ironic then that the people who were obviously incapable of organising a meeting, and keeping proper minutes of their decisions have the hide to argue that one of the world’s most successful constitutions should be changed.



...media failure...



There were, I think, two other reasons the media who were at the Summit failed to report the Summit properly.

First , they were too close to it.

Some were even participants.

The other reason is that many journalists spend so much effort commenting  they forget about their primary task which is to collect the facts.

I suspect that hardly any actually looked at the report released on Sunday. (Nor for that matter did most of the Summit delegates.)

If they thought it was wrong, that should have been the story.

But they obviously ignored it.

We didn't. On the day the Summit concluded, 20 April, 2008  ACM put out a media release, “Summit Laughing Stock.”   

 In it we warned that the Summit was " in danger of becoming a laughing stock." 

"The panel recommends an as yet unknown republic through a two-stage process. The first stage is to end ties with the UK."

 

Such ties of course went years ago. This story was taken up in some of the media, particularly Sydney’s high rating radio station, 2GB.

People were laughing across Sydney as the message came out. That spread across the nation, even if the serious media played it down.

Some delegates were outraged and contacted the summit secretariat.

That no doubt caused frenzied meetings in Canberra and Melbourne.

It took ten days to do something about it .

Instead of openly admitting something was wrong, the Summit records were surreptitiously changed  ( see this column, “Information and media manipulation par excellence,”  23 May 2008).

 

I cannot find any report about this in the media.

  

Anyway, I was asked recently whether I have anything in writing to prove the Summit record were changed. Well, I replied, I posted the decisions onto the ACM site.

 But there was nothing about the change on the Summit site, I was asked.

Of course there wasn’t, I replied.


 

...our report confirmed...

 

 

My report is corroborated by a delegate and person of high standing, Dr. Anne Twomey. She writes:

“Even worse was the fact that the final recommendations of the Governance group — fought out in a frantic and chaotic final session — were not correctly incorporated in the report presented to the Prime Minister.

“For example, the report listed as one of the top ideas of the Governance group: ‘Introduce an Australian republic, via a two-stage process, with Stage 1 ending ties with the UK while retaining the Governor-General’s titles and powers for five years. Stage 2: Identifying new models after extensive and broad consultation.’”

 

Another source confirms this. And we have other evidence which we will publish in the coming referendum or plebiscite campaign.

If there is one.

The point is, if you can’t run a weekend talk fest in Canberra, where you have already rigged the representation, don’t have the hide to tell the people to change their constitution.

 Thanks to the Summit, we will be able to demonstrate is in any campaign.

 

 

 

 

 
<< Start < Prev 1 2 3 Next > End >>

Results 1 - 9 of 21
ROYAL VISIT 2014

Image

The Book Depository
Image
Image
Prince William: The Early Years
Prince Charles

Prince Charles

Constitutional Monarchies & Republics Compared

Image


Defend the Constitution and Flag
Australian Election Watch

10th Anniversary Neville Bonner Oration

11th Anniversary and Appeal

Crowned Republic 

   Keep The Australian Flag
Return the Governor to Government House
The Succession
The Succession
The Governor of New South Wales
Governor of New South Wales
Fiji
Fijian soldier
Media and Monarchy
Media and Monarchy
Royal Yacht Britannia
Royal Yacht Britannia
Republic Audit: Costs of Republic
Republic Audit: Costs of Republic
Reserve Powers of the Crown
Events
August 2014 September 2014
Su Mo Tu We Th Fr Sa
Week 31 1 2
Week 32 3 4 5 6 7 8 9
Week 33 10 11 12 13 14 15 16
Week 34 17 18 19 20 21 22 23
Week 35 24 25 26 27 28 29 30
Week 36 31