A common response to any suggestion that the Constitution needs reform is “if it aint broke, don’t fix it”. But the fact is that the document is broke, and increasingly so.
The latest example concerns the School Chaplain program, started by the Howard government, and retained and extended by the Rudd and Gillard governments. This clearly offended one Queensland parent, who managed to find sufficient support for a High Court appeal against the whole program.
He put two arguments against the Chaplain program funded by the federal government. He claimed it interfered with a principle of separation of church and state. The High Court unanimously rejected this.
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Should the ACCC’s chairman or its commissioners be able to leave their government position on Friday and start work a week later with a consulting firm advising clients on competition law matters?
It’s a good question and not as hypothetical as you may think.
Why? Well, in the dying days of Graeme Samuel’s tenure as ACCC Chairman he announced that shortly after leaving the ACCC he would be joining a “boutique corporate advisory firm.” There Samuel would no doubt be called on to boost the firm’s corporate deal making profile.
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