- by Peter Farmer
- The Guardian
- Issue #1985
I’m writing to commend you on the editorial “Morrison Government Wants To Remove Internet Anonymity” (Guardian #1983). The Abbott-Turnbull-Morrison government has always been very hypocritical and inconsistent on questions of anonymity and freedom. They came into office claiming to approve of freedom, so much so that they created a “Freedom Commissioner” position for far-right apparatchik Tim Wilson of the Institute of Public Affairs! Wilson went on to support the freedom of employers, but not of workers, feeling that the workers’ freedom to go and look for another job if they didn’t like whatever the employer felt like dishing out was all the freedom they needed.
As for anonymity, while Joyce and Morrison are complaining about the horror of anonymous internet users being able to comment on things, they were overlooking another anonymous group – the anonymous funders of Christian Porter’s very expensive (and failed) defamation case against the ABC. The “blind trust” set up to fund Porter’s costs could run to seven figures. Porter has resigned as a minister rather than say where this huge sum of money is coming from, and Morrison hasn’t pressed him on it, hoping that the matter is settled by Porter’s sacrifice (i.e. not being a minister anymore, but staying in parliament).
This is in a parliament where the rules say that any gift worth over $300 should be declared. Yet, oddly enough, none of the fervour the PM and Deputy PM show over anonymous individuals online is on display toward’s Porter’s backers. Truly, we have two sorts of outrage here; one for the little people and one for the elite.
All the best, and thanks for the paper.