Monday, December 14, 2015

Monarchical fiction again

Sigh. People hate the TPPA, and as with other controversial political topics - banning child beating, the 90 day law, and retrospectively approving Parliamentary spending - they're demanding the Governor-General do something about it, via a petition asking him to "command" the government hold a referendum.

These people are fools. In our constitutional system, the Governor-General "commands" nothing. They act only and always on the advice of elected Ministers, even to the extent of signing their own execution warrant if told to do so. They're a rubberstamp, nothing more, and the idea that they are (or should be) anything more than that is pure monarchical fiction.

But they're fools in another way too. Because if your whole argument is that the TPP lacks any democratic mandate (one I agree with), then surely the answer to that cannot be to appeal to an official who lacks one himself. Because fundamentally, the Governor-General is illegitimate. They are appointed, not elected. And that means they have no more right to make decisions in our name than Canterbury's unelected dictators.

If you want to defeat the TPPA democratically, then the answer is to vote out the government which signed it, and vote in a government which will withdraw from it. If no political party will offer that choice, then you need to argue and lobby and vote the fuckers out until one will. But appealing to the representative of a vestigial hereditary dictatorship is neither constitutional nor democratic.