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Tuesday, 29 May 1984
Page: 2090

Senator MacGIBBON(12.02 a.m.) —The hour is late. I would like to support Senator Harradine and those Liberal and National Party of Australia senators who have spoken against the proposal before the Chair at present. The following statement is made in paragraph 2 of the introduction of the report of the Senate Standing Committee on Regulations and Ordinances:

That the Committee examine whether the aforementioned Regulations and Ordinance , individually or severally:

(a) restrict the Commonwealth's existing powers to prevent the importation of publications, including videotapes-

(i) promoting or encouraging violence,

(ii) promoting or encouraging the use of hard drugs, and

(iii) depicting hard core pornography, sexual violence or other gross obscenities;

(b) restrict the Commonwealth's existing power to require videos not imported for public exhibition to be registered by the Film Censorship Board before release by Customs; . . .

The answer to that is quite clearly yes, the ordinances do restrict the powers of the Commonwealth to do those things. There has been a lot of Evans talk to try to obfuscate the issue. The arguments of the Attorney-General (Senator Gareth Evans) have been more than adequately, lucidly and persuasively answered by people on this side of the chamber.

I rose to speak only because of the desperate lies and misrepresentation that are included in a Press release that has come out under the name of Senator Colin Mason. Unfortunately, I was in the chamber when the original modification of the ordinance was introduced a month or so ago. We on this side of the chamber do not expect anything from the Australian Labor Party other than the destruction of this society. We have seen it with the flag and we have seen it with the national anthem and all the other promulgation of dogma from the Socialist Internationale that has spewed forth from the Hawke socialist Government. But one would have expected that the Australian Democrats might have known a little bit better. What did we find when the original change to the ordinance came through a month or so ago? We had the Democrats lining up to support the unrestricted importation of hard core pornography and the incitement of the use of hard drugs. Well, given the Democrats' well known position on the use of soft drugs and the rest of it it is not surprising that they escalate to hard core drugs. The point is that the Press release put out by Senator Colin Mason is a gross misrepresentation of the Liberal Party and, by implication, the National Party point of view. Those of us in opposition do not support the uncontrolled entry of hard core pornography. We do not support the consequences of that decision in any way at all. I want to put it on record that the Press release that has been put out contains blatant lies and I repudiate it entirely.

Question resolved in the affirmative.