I wondered why Australia's Right to Know Campaign had gone a bit quiet. This is the outfit driven by the main newspaper groups (including Fairfax) and broadcasters to lobby for fewer legal impediments that get in the way of reporters' access to information. A quick check of the Right to Know's website shows the last big thing to happen was a big free speech jamboree in Sydney a year ago. There have been no papers, reports or analysis since 2008. Maybe it's because The Australian newspaper has decided to change sides and go into the suppression business.
I have discovered that the Victorian government and its agencies are perhaps the slowest and most obstructionist of any in the nation...its politicians and bureaucrats are guilty of a control freakery that would have made Sir Joh blush. It's odd, too, given that the Bracks, now Brumby, government, came to power on a promise of renewed democracy after Jeff Kennett.
Victorians have always liked to think that their state lacked the corruption and cronyism seen in the past in Queensland, NSW and Western Australia. But with the shutters being constantly pulled over their eyes, how would they know? It's an insult to their collective intelligence that this continues.