Fielding pulls the rug on Wild Rivers
Senator Fielding in his rejection of his support of the Tony Abbott, Wild Rivers private members bill, was letting his conscience guide him. Fielding is a Christian and attends CityLife Church a large Pentecostal church in Melbourne. On the ABC television program Q&A he admitted to being a creationist but would not answer whether or not he believes that the Earth is less than 10,000 years old.
The party that Fielding represents was founded in South Australia in time to contest the 2002 state elections, when former Assemblies of God pastor Dr Andrew Evans became its first Member of the Legislative Council (MLC), winning a seat in the South Australian Legislative Council.
Then along came fielding in 2004 winning just 1.9% of the vote to represent Victorian in the senate, well Victorians had enough of him and in 2010 fired him.
With the Family First philosophy built firmly in his mind, his attitude towards Aboriginal people was always going to determine, that Aboriginal people were better off under a system, where their lives are orchestrated towards welfare and assimilation.
The Family First party has no tangible Aboriginal policy that gives hope to Aboriginal people. They have no firm policy on self determination, economic development, and land ownership. Their attempts at winning over Aboriginal voters and middle Australia were seen as being sinister with the nomination of an Aboriginal woman, lawyer Andrea Mason, as party President.
There was no way Fielding was ever going to support Wild Rivers. He was always angling for a deal from the State and the Feds, that’s the nature of independents. Fielding played the “black card” and simply out played them.
I can’t believe the naivety of Noel Pearson and others in his camp to think that Fielding would support Wild Rivers.
Family First’s preferencing agreement with the Coalition in the 2004 federal election led Barnaby Joyce to publicly slam the party the day before the election, calling them “the lunatic Right”, and stating that “these are not the sort of people you do preference deals with”. Joyce said that in 2004, what has changed in 2011, why would you believe that Fielding would support you, why?
Look at his record on the Paid Parental Leave Scheme, Fielding suggested “some women may rort the scheme by deliberately falling pregnant and then having a late-term abortion”. He was subsequently criticised by all sides of Australian politics for these comments
He opposed the Rudd Government’s alcopops tax. He argued that taxing ready to drink alcohol beverages wouldn’t put an end to binge drinking. Since then the Senator has campaigned hard for the government to act on Australia’s binge drinking culture.
In February 2009, he told a Senate hearing that he believed divorce added to the impact of global warming because it resulted in people switching to a “resource-inefficient lifestyle”.I mean “Hello”
What hope Aboriginal peoples in the Cape that want to improve their lifestyle, when they are up against a modern day zealot and a devotee of the Family First doctrine.
Wild Rivers is flawed, we know why the Beattie Government done the deal politically, with the greens to enable labor to cling to power. This legislation, guarantees the two speed economy of Aboriginal people in the Cape, is maintained for the resource rich Aboriginal folk now getting some benefits, from mining in their regions.
For the remainder of Aboriginal people who have no mineral resources, just their land the right to earn from it is diminished. They have been condemned to a life of poverty, misery and despair.
The circumstances in today’s economy have changed, with governments tightening the screws and running a welfare reform agenda, the need to open up development to Aboriginal people is now stronger than ever.
In this so called 2 stage or patchwork economies where do Aboriginal people with little or no resources of mining agriculture, tourism, fishing or pastoral industries fit. How do you measure someone on a basic card?. How do you even begin to build the communities into economic hubs, if you don’t support their aspirations to get off welfare?
This whole business of Wild Rivers legislation is stopping development in the Cape and for Aboriginal people from having economies, and keeping them reliant on government handouts.
Calling Fielding a judas and a miserable man is probably close to the mark, but to Fielding it is water off a ducks back, he will slink back to his Christian roots, and the greens will forever be in his debt.