Grey Thoughts
Democrats Opposed to Democracy
The Australian Democrats are ramping up the rhetoric in their attacks on a large segment of Australia. Their concern at this large proportion of the population actually having a say in how the country is run is obvious.
The churches now run more schools and universities and public hospitals, aged care and employment services on behalf of government and can use these services to proselytise or to exclude those with other beliefs. This relationship with government can compromise the social justice function of the traditional churches in speaking out about the treatment of refugees, the attack on Iraq, on industrial relations and on poverty and indeed these churches in particular have been attacked by government for doing so.
Whoops...looks like I got it wrong. It isn't that they are opposed to churches (You know, groups of voters) having a say, they are concerned with them having a say when what they say goes against the wishes of the Australian Democrat party. It is apparently okay for the churches to influence policy if it supports the Democrats, but woe betide if the churches dare speak out against abortion.
The Australian Democrats say the neo-conservative religious right - much of it with roots in the US - is having a disproportionate influence on public policy.
Yep. It's pretty clear. The Democrats have influence envy. Consider what they rail about
The gay marriage ban legislation responded to the conservative religious, and both major parties were prepared to turn their backs on a significant number of gay and lesbian voters even though the rest of the population is not affected in any material sense by the restriction.
The 'significant number of gay and lesbian voters' is less than 2%, more than likely less than 1%. Yet the influence of the religious (Australia is over 60% Christian as per the last census) is decried as being 'disproportionate'.

It gets better though...the Democrats feel that having 1/3 of federal parliment as Christian's 'has more than its fair share of committed Christians.' 1/3 versus 60%.

With these sorts of math skills I am glad that the Democrats will never run the economy.

Clearly, the Democrats are unhappy with the fact that religious people are trying to have a say in how their country is run. So what is their response? To change the laws against the churches and force more people towards the secular indoctrination of a state school system which has removed religious education from it's classes. They are n't interested in discourse unless it suits their agenda, this is even though they complain
Rather than exploring the moral and practical questions in voluntary euthanasia for example and developing effective responses, a simple just-say-no was the response.
Yet see how they respond when abortion is brought up. "We don't need another debate". Feh.

The democrats are a dying breed. We can but hope they die out completely at the next election.

Fill out their survey to tell them what you think.
The notion of separation of church and state, in the way the democrats are seeking to apply it, is misguided; it isn't even accurate to the intention in America of the founding fathers. Religion, specifically that of Christianity, was the foundation of America, and has had a significant impact on the legal system in Australia. The separation policy was to keep the government out of church affairs (given the failure in England with the national church), though not Christian morality out of politics. As you should be aware, Christian belief is not a private affair, but speaks to every element of a world-view in the construction of healthy and whole individuals, and society collectively, even whilst respecting the freedom of others to dissent. As such, these beliefs impact sociology, ethics/morality, politics, law, and yes, even science/biology.
All have beliefs, and these beliefs are central to morality. As such, to try and divorce beliefs from morality, which is central to government and policy, is misguided. There is no neutral moral ground. Whilst I agree that bribery and manipulation are invalid approaches by religious groups to sway political process, when issues of morality come up, it would be irresponsible for 'believers' not to speak up. As a wise man once said, "Righteousness exalts a nation." Wise, morally informed choices provide the greatest benefit to the greatest number of people. It seems to me that the Democrats are pursuing a negative, destructive agenda, one betraying intolerance to Christians, not essentially on behalf of the people as democracy would require, but rather to create a society where humanist values have full sway. This is a double standard. The Democrats need to rethink their position, and use your energy in pursuing change that will genuinely benefit Australia.
Hey Alan just an update; the Democrats have released the results of their survey (well sort of). Their comments are very interesting.

I have a post about it over on My Blog
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