Tuesday, 11 February 2014

Revelations from the NSW Government Whip

Opening up a dialogue with influential politicians is a critical part of any lobby groups activity.  Ideas and values are shared and valuable insight into the political process is gained only through communicating.

Quite often, Twitter is used by politicians as a means of spreading their propaganda to the masses.   Their keen followers re-tweet their comments and policies and in general, most comments from elected representatives are fairly sterile and politically correct.

I noticed an exchange between Peter Phelps MLC and a few of the #LAFO (Law Abiding Firearms Owners) discussing the recent NSW Ammunition Bill.  The bill is an unworkable and very much draconian piece of legislation that requires firearms dealers to record the license details of those purchasing ammunition.  This is apparently a response to potential 'straw purchases' that may occur, which in turn is supposed to prevent criminal elements from obtaining ammunition for their black market handguns.

Peter went on to talk about how the political process doesn't always pass good legislation.

Knowing how things work in Queensland, I put this to Peter.

I was shocked to see such a response.  I probed a little more.

There is it in black and white.  The main driver of firearms policy in New South Wales is the Police Force, not the Government.  If this is how it works for firearms legislation, what other law making activities are the police force involved in?

I for one am not a fan of the police writing legislation in any shape or form. Its plain to see that the police don't have public safety outcomes in mind, just the introduction of more restrictions for the #LAFO. 

Will it ever change?  Politicians generally wont cross the Police.  The police are the governments uniformed tax collectors after all, and I'm quite sure that no politician wants the police investigating their personal affairs.

At least some MP's are critical of the NSW Police Force's poorly written legislation.  If that is the best the Police can come up with, their legislative arm should be sacked and disbanded. How much money is wasted every year by drafting and introducing poor legislation that does not and will not ever work?

I keep on being reminded by a good friend in this fight that it's amazing what people will tell you when you talk to them.

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